Friday, December 4, 2015

Ultrawide Monitors Or Multiple Monitors: What's Best For Productivity?

If you're in the workplace or you just need to be very productive whenever you are on your computer then multiple monitors have always been the way to go. However, a new type of monitor is challenging this status quo, and that is the ultrawide. Ultrawide displays that are packing resolutions that look better than multiple monitors side-by-side. So how do Ultrawides differ from multi-screen setups? Well, there are a few ways.

Ultrawide monitors are displays that have a 21:9 aspect ratio. Depending on the size of your screen, you are probably going to have a resolution of around 2,560 to 3,440 pixels wide and 1,080 pixels to 1,440 pixels high with screen sizes measuring from 29" to 34" diagonally. This gives you a lot of horizontal working space and, sometimes, more than what you get by having multiple monitors next to each other. In addition to that, a single ultrawide monitor offers a seamless working experience without bezels getting in the way and without having multiple connectors running through your workspace.

The ultimate goal would be to have a single monitor that gives you the screen real estate of multiple monitors using a single connector to your video card. Ultrawide displays also give you the ability to run native resolutions on current-gen video cards without having to upgrade to cards with more power, more ports, or even two or three cards if you want a truly smooth experience. At least that's what people want. What they actually get is a little different.

Companies like Dell, LG, AoC, Asus, and Samsung all make ultrawide monitor options though there are typically one or two specific models per company to pick from. Even though there may be a lot of players on the field that doesn't mean there are a lot of options to choose from. LG has three top models, Dell has two top models, Asus has two top models, AOC has one top model and NEC has one top model, all of which range from $350 to $1,200.

The question here is, however, whether or not an ultrawide display makes you more productive then multi-monitor setups. To be honest, the number of monitors you have doesn't matter in terms of productivity. What matters is the amount of real estate those monitors have and how you use it. If you have a couple small displays and you are having trouble scrolling and reading documents and things then these multiple monitors aren't helping you. One really large monitor is capable of accommodating all of this information cleanly and will increase your productivity.

But at what size does an ultrawide monitor start to be better than multiple monitors? Well, at 34" you begin to have more than enough room to work and with resolutions like 3,440 x 1,440 you are getting enough space to open up three or four browsers, documents or applications side-by-side  or tiled without text getting too small to read or menus becoming hard to navigate. In addition to that, 34" monitors are typically the flagship models for a company and have all the necessary ports and connectors that you would ever need.

Basically what it all boils down to is the fact that ultrawide monitors can be great and they could be the future of the traditional workplace. However, the benefits of an ultrawide monitor only really come with the models that are 30" or larger. The curved angles of the ultrawide monitors are also very nice, not to mention that they are all HD monitors. If you have the money to drop on one of the larger, more expensive ultrawide monitors then you may find that the uniform screen and lack of frames cutting things off is exactly what you are looking for. In terms of productivity well that depends on the size of your screen real estate and how you use it.

Content originally published here

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