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As a programmer, it is a pain to work with 1 monitor, I generally have at least 2. My last setup was 2 19" monitors, they were not widescreen they were just regular. In fact I have never used a widescreen monitor and now it seems that is all you see in a store pretty much.

So I am looking to get new monitors, probably start out with 2 and then upgrade to 3 or 4. So I am just a little curious is there any pros or cons to using widescreen monitors in a multi monitor setup?

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4 Answers 4

up vote 3 down vote accepted

Generally, they are a little thinner from top to bottom - however getting a higher resolution bigger screen (22" 1920x1200) more than makes up for this!

I have two monitors and really want a third - The fact is, one is not enough for modern day work, two is a good amount to work with as it allows you to compare / reference whilst working but I think that three is the best amount as it means you can do your dual monitor work whilst having a third for your every day stuff (internet browsing, refreshing superuser.com! etc.)

I have seen many people with widescreen monitors that use them for displaying two windows side by side, however I really just can't work like that... Another good use that I set up for one customer is to rotate them and use them portrait. (My client has three with the middle one set up like this - it is amazing!)

Anyway, go for it - you won't regret it. Just make sure you get at least 1920x1200, DVI and HDMI with HDCP and it should last you for years to come!

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+1 on rotating a wide screen monitor. I really like looking at big chunks of code or PDFs on a tall, skinny monitor. –  Doug Harris Oct 8 '09 at 21:58
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The monitor I was thinking of using is 1920 x 1080 resolution it's an 23" HP located here bestbuy.com/site/… do you think that resolution is ok? Hard to find the 1920x1200 –  jasondavis Oct 8 '09 at 22:15
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Personally, That price doesn't seem to bad - but I still would rather have 1920x1200, If you look around, I am sure you will find one - I cannot really recommend any over any others as being in the UK, I am not sure what you have available. –  William Hilsum Oct 8 '09 at 22:34
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... And, most importantly - if you are going from square to widescreen, and you actually like square, you really do want to have the biggest vertical resolution you can have. –  William Hilsum Oct 8 '09 at 22:35

I have two 22" widescreens and I have to say, I'm not completely in love with the setup. The desktop just seems too wide and not high enough.

I'm now thinking about getting a 4:3 monitor to put in between the two 22" screens or just getting one big 30" from Dell.

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Before you buy that 30" Dell, if you're not deadset on 4x3, compare against the price of a 32" 1080p TV, keeping in mind that it has a tuner as well as that big screen. –  JMD Oct 8 '09 at 22:27

For people who are in your situation you might consider the AMD Eyefinity feature on their newest Radeon video cards. These support up to six DisplayPort connectors, hence up to six video screens. The video card can render all six as a single very large surface. Then, you could go out and get something like the Alienware super widescreen monitor which appears to use three seamlessly merged monitor screens with just a single bezel to encompass them all. No break-ups in the middle where the panels are butted up to each other.

Put these in a side-by-side, top-over-bottom (horizontal or vertical) configuration and now you have a bitchin' system to brag about :)

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For my desk at work I use three 4x3-aspect monitors. But for my office at home, which doubles as a guest room when company is in town, I chose a 32" Sharp Aquos 1080p TV. 1900x1080 resolution is sufficient for the work I do at home. Plus, there's the wow-factor when friends come over and see this massive "monitor". heh

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