Have you started working remotely from home, or started your own home business? Then you’ll need to be sure to have the right size monitor in order to be productive. However, when you begin shopping for a monitor, it’s easy to quickly become confused and overwhelmed by all the monitors that are currently available.
So, exactly what do you need to consider when it comes to the size of your monitor?
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Monitors come in all shapes and sizes, which makes choosing the right one for you a little more challenging. The screen should be large enough to see what you’re doing and provide plenty of space for your work. Working on a screen that’s too small will decrease your productivity, while working on a monitor with more space will increase your productivity. The goal is to find a monitor that lets you work comfortably and efficiently.
For instance, you’ll want to look for a monitor that will fits the space where you’ll be working. Will you be working at a table or a desk? Then the monitor will need to fit that space comfortably.
Another consideration is if you’ll need more than one monitor. It’s quite common these days to have a computer with two monitors, depending on the type of work you do.
Just to give you a starting point, many people find that choosing a 24” monitor is a great option. The price is right for a monitor of this size, with most costing about $100 or even lower. Another popular option is a 27” monitor, which is great for anyone working in IT or graphic design, though some may prefer a 30” monitor for these types of jobs.
Another consideration to factor in is if you’ll be using the monitor for other things such as watching movies. Here, a 50” screen is ideal. However, monitors that are larger also come with a larger price tag, and you may not really need something so large for regular office work. Plus, you’ll need to see farther back from such a large monitor. It can also be difficult to find media that displays at the right resolution on these larger screens. Your picture will possibly become distorted and stretched or be surrounded by a black border.
So, a monitor that’s about 24” to 30” should be a great option for most people. You get all the best in regard to resolution, color, and they’re large enough to view documents side by side, or even two web pages at the same time. In addition, monitors in this size range are more affordable.
Other Factors to Consider When Buying the Right Monitor
Along with size, there are some other factors to consider, too, including the following. We’ve created a section for each factor.
These days, most monitors are LCD and use LED lighting to keep the devices thinner, while also saving energy.
The larger the screen, the higher the resolution. A larger screen will have a higher number of pixels, which means the image on the screen will be crisper and sharper.
The larger the monitor, the higher the resolution you’ll need. Here are a couple of examples as a guide: for a 27” monitor, you’ll generally have a resolution of 2560 x 1440, for a 34” screen, you’ll have 3440 x 1440 resolution.
The most common resolution is 1080p: this allows for a reasonable amount of clarity, if the monitor’s not too large. 1080p is best for 21” or 24” monitors. You’ll have great picture quality, and the prices will be lower. Remember that if you want to go with a larger screen, then the monitor will have to be larger, too.
The other common resolutions you’ll come across include 1440p, 4K, 5K, and 8K (which is the highest).
This is the way images are displayed on the screen and is the ration between the monitor’s length compared to its height. The most common ratio is 16:9. This works with a wide variety of content, and it’s perfect for movies and gaming.
This is another important aspect of choosing the right monitor for working from home. Most monitors now come with 300 to 350 cd/m2. This is a bright screen that makes it easy to work in a room that has a lot of natural light. However, to avoid eyestrain, many people choose to go with a 250 cd/m2 monitor.
This is the difference between how white and how black a monitor can become. A higher contrast ratio is good because the colors will be clearer. However, there’s a wide range of measurements for contrast ratios. So, if in doubt, it may be best to ask the vendor about this.
HDR stands for High-dynamic Range, which is a newcomer to the world of monitors. This can have a huge effect on visuals; however, many monitors are simply not bright enough to really take advantage of this feature. So, don’t choose a monitor based solely on this factor.
This is the rate at which a monitor refreshes, which is rated in Hz (hertz). That means this is how often a monitor updates the image on the screen. Most monitors fall in the 60Hz range, but you will find others that have a higher refresh rate.
Higher refresh rates mean less eyestrain and can mean you have a higher frame rate for your favorite games. So, if you’re into gaming, then you may want to go with a monitor that has a 120Hz or 144Hz refresh rate. If you choose a monitor with a higher refresh rate, make sure it has a graphics card that’s strong enough to work with it.
This is the measure of how fast the monitor shows image transitions. A low response time is OK for video that’s fast-action. Response times are measured in milliseconds.
You’ll find that the best screens are able to switch pixels (images) in about 2 milliseconds. That’s great, but you may not need this capability for working from home.
This is the angle isn’t as important for monitors; however, if you’d like to watch programs with others, then you may want to go with a larger viewing angle, so everyone can see the image clearly. A viewing angle around 170 degrees will be perfect.
Here, you’ll want to make sure the monitor will be compatible with your laptop or desktop ports. In other words, your new monitor will need to have same type of connections that are available on your computer. The most common ports for monitors are USB-C, Thunderbolt 3 and HDMI.
And if there are other accessories you want to connect to the monitor, you’ll need to make sure the monitor has the proper ports to accommodate these devices. Examples of accessories include a mouse, keyboard, webcam, and more.
This is another important factor to consider when choosing the right monitor for working at home. Even though you’re working from home, ergonomics is still very important to your health and wellbeing. This is especially true if you’ll be working long hours.
Having the right equipment is essential. So, look for a monitor that is able to adjust both the height and tilt. This way, you’ll be able to set it up that you can sit correctly, without leaning into the monitor or hanging over the keyboard.
In addition, look for monitors that have low blue light, and are flicker-free in order to maintain your eye health.
Color is another essential factor to consider when choosing a monitor, especially if you’re a creative. In this case, it’s best to choose a monitor that has a wide color gamut, with true color accuracy.
You’ll find there are different types of color spaces including Adobe RGB, DCI-PE and sRGB. You’ll have the widest color space with DCI-PD3, which also gives you the riches images.
You may want to also consider a monitor that has a built-in colorimeter, which makes it easy and fast to calibrate colors on your creative projects.
Design & Mounting
Most experts recommend a monitor that’s easy to use, and one that comes with a stand that can be adjusted (tilted or rotated, for instance).
Some monitors even include built-in controls to help you navigate the device’s menu and choose different modes and settings.
However, if you’re looking to mount your monitor on the wall, then you’ll need to be sure and buy the right monitor mount. It should be strong enough to support the monitor’s size. Another option for mounting on the wall is an arm wall mount. These are nice because you can usually adjust them in various ways to accommodate your work, and if you’re sitting or standing.
This is another factor it pays to consider. These days monitors are certified to use low amounts of energy. You may find monitors that have an Energy Star or an EPEAT rating. Choosing this type of monitor can save you as much as $50 each year in energy costs.
Advanced monitors have features that make it possible to save even more energy.
Summing It Up
Having the right monitor for your work is essential to your productivity, health, and well-being. While there are many factors to consider when shopping for a monitor, we’ve covered the essentials in this article.
For most people working remotely, a 24” screen is usually a great choice. Monitors in this size range will be $100 or less and are perfect for office work. If you do more specialized work with graphics, IT tasks, and more, then you may want to choose that’s from 27” to 30”.
Investing in the right monitor will ensure you can effectively and comfortably, which will increase your overall productivity.