Advice on buying a monitor

I’m shopping for an external monitor to use with my laptops (for work and play) and I’m confused to see prices range from $200-$5000. Also, it’s hard to find reviews sorted by monitor size. I want a flat screen about 24" wide (which seems to be typically a 27" monitor) Oh, and i want a vesa mount.

What else should i be looking for?

One thing I’m wondering is whether it’s a mistake to get a screen with too many pixels if i am using mediocre video processing. Will that make it too slow or anything?

I’ll probably use this 80% for work, and the rest mostly for light gaming. But I had issues playing both Minecraft and Witcher 3 that I couldn’t see stuff on my monitor that were easy to see on my son’s. So i don’t think i just want to buy pixels and nothing else, this time.

Same laptop outputting to two different monitors? I’d guess refresh rate and/or display settings.


My laptop was connected to one monitor. My adult son, using entirely different hardware, couldn’t understand why i was complaining about not being able to see stuff, as we played Minecraft together. We sent screen shots back and forth and they were completely different.

I’m not even certain if a “screen shot” is sensitive to the actual screen, or is purely determined by the computer.

Connection ports? HDMI vs. “Display Port”. This might be a difference in why you may not see something (Display Port connection) vs. seeing it (HDMI connection)?

I’d worry less about “pixels” as that won’t really affect price or your other features all that much, IMO. Having a “high” resolution only means that you can (easily) go to any lower resolution.

Built-in speakers?

Don’t need speakers

video graphics card (along with hardware accelerator) can affect how you might see things, too.

Ok, that’s not going to be resolved by the monitor. Your son’s video card is better than yours.


You say that now . . . :upside_down_face:

What would i use speakers for?

I typically use the laptop’s speakers, and sometimes use headphones. I’ve never wanted better speakers.

“Game sounds” . . . my son bought a headset to play Black Ops with . . . only it didn’t produce the “game sounds” . . . just other players’ chatting.

Turns out that this was designed for those who have the big “surround sound” system to provide the environmental sounds around you, but still be able to get the “in situ” communications with the headsets.

We got a different set that also had the game sounds (his system is basically right under our bedroom).

The difference, for what it’s worth, was that everything was dark and hard to distinguish on my screen, and in his it was easy to distinguish shades of gray, essentially.

I know I need an HDMI port or two. What other ports do I need? In particular, I have an older Mac and would like the capability to connect it.

What video card do you have? Can you find the control panel and increase the dynamic range output?

Also, have you checked the in game settings for display? I don’t play either of those games so I don’t know if they have settings you can adjust for brightness and contrast.

What connection ports do you see?

That’s a great question. I have three laptops. The one I was using, I think, was an HP Spectre that doesn’t have its own graphic card, it uses “Intel Iris Plus Graphics”.

LOL, some of those are really old and never used on a Mac, but I have a port shaped like the mini display port, which I think was called thunderbolt, and is compatible with mini display port.

My PC’s have HDMI and USB-C. I bought some kind of port that converts USB-C to HDMI, though.

you can modify your options.txt file in your appdata for minecraft apparently.

Huh! That’s not going to help Witcher, but that might very well help my problem in Minecraft. Thanks.

I need a new monitor anyway, because I’m setting up a new workstation. So I’m still interested in what I should be looking for, or avoiding.

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I think you need to decide how much your gaming matters and what price point you want to get the best quality and do all the bells whistles matter to you. Here is a decent article to kind of fine tune what you may or may not want to look for in a monitor and why.

But mainly I came here under the misread thread tile of “Advice on buying a Minotaur”


Make sure you have a labyrinth designed where you can get out, but the 'Taur can’t.