For anyone in the market for a new monitor, I wanted to show something that is really incredible.
Let’s start with a pic:
This is an IPS monitor with the panel quality of an Apple Cinema Display and Dell U2711 (same panel, just not A+) for not more than 300€.
The monitor is a pure awesomeness. I don’t know how else to describe it. Space encore, very easy on my eyes, since there is no AG-coating, it’s VERY sharp. It’s a glossy display, so make sure you have no window behind you. That’s one downside.
Another is the stand: it’s bad as they can only get. Imagine basically a great picture with the crappiest plastic stand ever, it’s wobbly, it’s hard to move… ugh.
But: considering that you can find stands for 10€ which are quite stable and just screw them in, I don’t think that’s a huge deal breaker.
Now, this monitor has a great picture quality – it is a A- graded panel, which is good for everything except hardcore photography. Mine came with a slight defect – I call it slight because I only noticed it with a monitor test program. Normal use, whatever the picture I gave it, I didn’t see it. I would call it a color smudge, but reeeeeeeally have to look for it. I bet most screens have some sort of defect, even those 700€ U2711s (I remember reading about yellow tint, backlight bleed etc). Camera can’t pick it up.
Another thing is a pixel thing: in Korea, where this monitor is from, there is a 5 stuck/dead pixel tolerance. Meaning the monitor can have up to 5 stuck pixels and does not have to be replaced. Now, the sellers in Ebay give you a possibility to buy a “perfect pixel guarantee”, which guarantees you won’t get stuck pixels. Probability of dead pixels is also very very small. And in the end, there is one seller – bigclothcraft, who offers to check the monitor prior to shipping for defects (serious backlight bleeding, defects on the panel, dead pixels and tells you he won’t send a defective product…).
I ordered from him and I got a perfect product.
There is one big downside though, and that cause me quite a bit aggrevation:
Monitor stand removal. You can’t remove it without completely opening the monitor up. You have to remove the bezel, unscrew, disconnect and remove the panel, just to come to inner screws that remove the backside arch, under which the holes for VESA mounts are found.
Hard to remove stand/arch.
Somewhat risky with warranty since you have to send it back if it dies at your own costs.
No OSD (either manually change via driver or get a colorimeter, like I did)
Excellent panel quality + great picture.
Price – 27incher IPS with 2560pixels for 300€!
Shortest delivery EVER (2-3 days from Korea to Austria, including customs), included in price
Gamer-friendly – no 27incher out there has really such low response time and such low input lag (I think someone measured about 10ms was it?, not sure)
No AG-coating (not sure if upside, as this is for you to decide, but for me definitely an upside)
Since it was this cheap, I had some budget left over to buy some accessories. I always wanted a good monitor arm, so I decided to get one of the best: Ergotron MX, basically can hold anything up to 30inches, and quite heavy too.
Also got a colorimeter, which I can use also for my 2nd screen and my laptop – datacolor Spyder4Pro.
All in all, about 500€ investment, while a Dell or HP with the same panel quality cost from 600€ up… (maybe you won’t get that mini-unvisible smudge and you can replace it if you have a dead pixel).
That all said, I love my Catleap, and if I had to do it all over again – gladly. I am sold.
Btw. there are more versions of this screen, including a 120Hz version sold at 120hz.net.