Dell 3007WFP: Appearance and Design

The 3007WFP is almost a direct clone of the 2407WFP, at least in terms of the outward appearance. It's basically the big brother -- and we definitely mean BIG! Most users already think that a 24" LCD is pretty large, but the 2407WFP is absolutely dwarfed by the 3007WFP.

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Other than the change in size, most of our commentary about the 2407WFP applies to the 3007WFP. It's attractive and it comes with a base stand that allows a reasonable amount of travel (about four inches).

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You get tilt, swivel, and height adjustment courtesy of the base stand. If you prefer, you can also remove the base stand and use a standard 100mm VESA wall mount. Unlike the 2407WFP, there's no ability to rotate the display. Considering the size of the panel, that is to be expected -- you would need a base stand with about six inches of vertical travel to even be able to accommodate the increased height of portrait mode.

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The rear of the display is relatively nondescript, but all of the connection ports are facing downwards so they aren't immediately visible.

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As far as input ports go, as mentioned earlier only a single DVI port is present and the display requires a dual-link capable graphics card in order to run at its native 2560x1600 resolution. The 3007WFP can still function as a USB hub, and the USB input as well as two USB ports are located on the back of the display. Besides the main power connection, a power socket for an optional speaker bar is once again present.

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Like the 2405FPW and 2407WFP, the left side provides two additional USB ports along with a flash memory reader. The same flash memory types as the 2407WFP are supported via the 9-in-2 reader.

Describing the On-Screen Display for the 3007WFP is extremely simple: there is no OSD! At the bottom of the display are three buttons: power, increase brightness, and decrease brightness. There are 20 levels of backlight intensity, but there's no immediate indication of your current setting. This is definitely taking minimalism to an extreme, and while many of the other features usually present in an OSD are unnecessary considering there is only one video input available, we really would have liked to see at least a few more options.

Speaking of options, we would also really like to see more video input choices. Granted, no analog signals are going to be capable of driving 2560x1600 resolution without experiencing signal degradation, but the 3007WFP does a good job at scaling non-native resolutions so it still should have been possible to include a VGA connection as well as component inputs and simply limit the maximum resolution with those connections to 1920x1200. We would also really like to be able to run single-link DVI at resolutions above 1280x800.

As it stands, the 3007WFP is intended pretty much only for use with a computer. Considering a 30" LCD is larger than a lot of people's televisions, it seems a shame to limit the versatility of the display.

30 Inch vs. 24 Inch

Having used both of these LCDs for a while, we felt it might be useful to provide our impressions of the experience. We used 21" CRTs for a long time, but the upgrade to a 24" LCD still broght noticeably more screen area. Personally, I held out switching to LCDs due to concerns about refresh rates and pixel response times, but when I finally upgraded to a 24" LCD (the 2405FPW), I was extremely pleased with the result. Some people still have complaints about LCDs versus CRTs, but overall we feel the benefits far outweigh the negatives and all of us are more than happy using LCDs on a daily basis.

If a 24" LCD feels pretty large compared to a 21" CRT (despite the fact that it weighs about one third as much), a 30" LCD is absolutely huge. Provided your eyesight is good enough, you almost feel the need to sit back several feet further away from the computer. Of course, the native resolution is such that icons and text are actually slightly smaller than what they would be on a 24" LCD, and if you end up sitting close to the screen like most people a 30" LCD can almost feel too big.

Another potential problem with such large LCDs is that they can require a ton of graphics power in order to run games at their native resolution. A single fast graphics card like a Radeon X1900 XT is generally sufficient for running most modern games at 1920x1200, but until the launch of the GeForce 8800 series it simply wasn't practical to play most games at 2560x1600 without dual GPUs. Even if you've got the graphics horsepower, configuring some games to run at the native resolution can be a pain, although thankfully this is getting better with time.

24" LCDs are pretty expensive still, and 30" LCDs are even more so, so before going out and spending a lot of money on a large LCD you will definitely want to try one out in person. Provided you have the hardware, using a 30" LCD is a really enjoyable experience for gaming and multitasking, at least from our perspective. Not everyone feels that way, however, and considering the price we feel that the 22"-26" LCDs are currently the sweet spot. You could purchase two 24" LCDs for the price of a 30" LCD right now, and there are also plenty of desks where it simply isn't practical to try and use a 30" display. If you've got the money and desk space, however, a 30" LCD definitely won't disappoint -- it just might take a little time to get used to having such a huge monitor.

Dell 2407WFP: Appearance and Design Subjective Evaluation
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  • mongo lloyd - Saturday, March 3, 2007 - link

    As for the .303mm pixel pitch, keep in mind that a 19" 4:3 1280x1024 screen that I would wager is the most common LCD in use right now is like .295mm and I never heard anyone complaining about the 19" displays...

    Well, you've heard one now. Out of ALL LCDs (minus the IBM T221, since that one is... a bit... special), the only panels I could ever begin to consider (and that's ignoring all the other faults with LCDs -- CRTs still beat them, and probably always will, if you ask me (at least as long as they use DVI with crappy refresh)) are the 30" 2560x1600 and 20.1" 1600x1200 monitors. I consider 1600x1200 on a good 19" CRT to be the optimal resolution, and the dot pitch on pretty much all LCDs are pitiful in comparison -- and the dot pitch is even more important on LCDs since the pixels are square and thus very sharp.

    Also, you probably meant 5:4, not 4:3.
    Reply
  • exdeath - Monday, March 5, 2007 - link

    I love my F500R 21" .22mm AGP @ 1600x1200 CRT.

    But when it dies... there is no getting a replacement.

    I have dual 1905FP Dell 19" LCDs at work, 1280x1024 5:4 .295 pitch and its quite sharp. They seem to be the standard by which I judge other LCDs by since that is what I am used to staring at all day. The higher pitch doesn't bother me at all.

    In fact, being a graphics programmer and having a close up eye for pixel perfect detail, I tend to prefer images with sharp square pixels.
    Reply
  • kmmatney - Saturday, March 3, 2007 - link

    They do make laptop screens that are 15.4" and 1920 x 1200 resolution, which is a pretty amazing pixel pitch. So LCD dektop monitors are easily capable of better pixel pitch, there must just not be a market for them yet.

    Everytime I try 1600 x 1200 on a 19" CRT, it looks like crap, and I;'ve tried quite a few CRTs.
    Reply
  • JarredWalton - Saturday, March 3, 2007 - link

    Funny thing is, I go the other way. Laptop LCDs tend to have text that gets a bit difficult for me to read now. Oh, I can do it, but even 17" 1920x1200 displays are a bit tiny text/icons. I don't think I'd like a 15.4" 19x12 LCD. To each their own, of course.

    As for the rest, I fully agree that 1600x1200 on a 19" CRT looks pretty lousy - too small again, and I *love* the perfectly square pixels of LCDs. 20" (viewable) CRTs are required for proper 16x12 resolution, in my opinion. Refresh rates are definitely the one issue I have with LCDs - running CRTs at 100 Hz made it so I wouldn't notice shearing due to vsync, and you can't do that with LCDs. To counter that, though, all the pincushion, stretch, rotate, etc. necessary to get a CRT to properly fill the screen always irritated me. Heck, I'd even take an analog connection LCD over CRTs!
    Reply
  • exdeath - Friday, March 2, 2007 - link

    "Its a 27" compromise between the wider range of capabilities of the 30" and the smaller size of the 24" "

    Oops that should have been "limited range of capabilities of the 30"
    Reply
  • JarredWalton - Friday, March 2, 2007 - link

    I haven't used a 2707WFP yet, but I will see if I can get one sent for review.

    Take care,
    Jarred Walton
    Editor
    AnandTech.com
    Reply
  • lash - Friday, March 2, 2007 - link

    First of all, thank you for the review. Does anyone know if this monitor suffer from input lag, like most of the 24" models ? Would it be hard to include a input lag test of the monitors reviewed ? Personally I think of it as a big problem when playing fps or online. Reply
  • Resh - Friday, March 2, 2007 - link

    Thanks for the review, particularly the section on colour accuracy where you use objective measurement in the form of a colorimeter. Thanks!

    However, I note that I can't find the calibration targets you used. For example, when I calibrate my display, I'm targetting about 80 - 120 cd/m2 (depends on display type; brighter for LCD) for brightness, gamma 2.2, and a colour temp of 6500K or D65. This is important as it affects, particularly on LCDs, the display's ability to render colour accurately. For example, my Dell 2407FPW can perform with the level of accuracy that the review describes, but only when its brightness is allow to rise close to 300 cd/m2. While this is great for colour accuracy, it isn't very good for screen to print matching as the screen is far too bright for the print to match. Also, that kind of brightness is retina-searing!

    In my case, my HP CRT is capable of astonishing accuracy at 80 cd/m2 -- the brightest it can go. If I screen match and make the drop the 2407FPW to that level, suddenly it isn't so accurate -- acceptable, but no match for the HP.

    So it would be great if you could calibrate and profile to targets that are relevant for photographers and also make your targets known. Failing that, at least let us know what your targets were and how the eventual profile compared. For example, I asked ColorEyes Display to target 80 cd/m2 on my 2407FPW and the eventual result was 74 cd/m2.

    Thanks!
    Reply
  • JarredWalton - Friday, March 2, 2007 - link

    I used the default (6500K 2.2 gamma), but I'll have to check on the white point value. Obviously, post-calibration it was still very bright (see page 6), so I may need to run calibrations for a lower white point. The Dell's can manage that, but the Gateway is sort of up a creek, since it couldn't get lower than 356 cd/m2 by adjusting the brightness. With contrast set lower, it might be able to get below 200 cd/m2, but probably not while providing any reasonable amount of accuracy. Sorry to say that I don't do anything with print, so that aspect of testing just didn't occur to me. Reply
  • strikeback03 - Monday, March 5, 2007 - link

    I bought the Gateway over the weekend. It can go much lower than 356 cd/m^2 if you go to User color and lower the color channels all by the same amount. They ship set to 100, I lowered them all to 60 or so, which allowed me to set brightness to 120cd/m^2.

    I have some interesting calibration results, I'll post them in the Gateway comments when I get home from work.
    Reply

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