The computer monitor market for a long time was limited to just two options for most consumers. Either you could get an affordable screen with a TN panel, or an extremely expensive one with an IPS panel. In recent years that huge pricing gap has largely disappeared, and you can now find IPS monitors that aren't that much more expensive than good TN screens. High time for Hardware.Info to take a closer look at 20 affordable IPS monitors.
So why are we focusing on monitors with IPS panels? TN (Twisted Nematic) and IPS (In Plane Switching) aren't the only types of panel. Most are related to one of those two, but VA (Vertical Alignment) is an altogether very different technology. VA monitors typically have the best contrast, since VA technology is able to block the most light from the backlight. Therefore, it creates the best black values. It does have its own drawbacks, however. VA screens tend to use more power, they tend to have relatively slow response times and colours change noticably when you look at the screen from an angle. The viewing angles are still better than on TN panels though.
Not many consumer monitors exist with VA technology, but they're out there. Samsung, among others, has the SyncMaster LS24C750. BenQ and Iiyama also have a number of monitors using the same technology.
In this article, we'll focus specifically on IPS, primarily because of the better response times compared to VA. That's often a quality that's important to people looking for an alternative to TN screens (which have very fast response times). What TN panels are not good at, is displaying colours properly, especially when viewed from an angle. You can read the rest of 20 affordable IPS monitors group test on Hardware.info.