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DisplayMate's Best Video Hardware Guide

The equipment listed in DisplayMate's Best Video Hardware Guide™ is in our judgment the best commercially available video hardware in each of 50 Award Categories. All of the hardware in The Guide receives DisplayMate's highest Five-Star Award rating. The Awards are based solely on image and picture quality excellence and are recommended as a comparative standard of excellence for consumers, corporate and government buyers, reviewers, test labs, and manufacturers alike. Consult the Guide when you must have the very Best or want to see how well your selections stack up against the Best Video Hardware.

About the Guide
The Guide is the most comprehensive and complete listing of outstanding video display hardware available worldwide. It is produced by DisplayMate Technologies, which is recognized as the foremost source for testing and evaluation of image and picture quality throughout the computer and video industries worldwide. DisplayMate is an industry standard used for judging major international industry events. Over 200 publications in 70 countries use DisplayMate for their editorial testing and lab reviews of video hardware. The Guide is an objective and free service of DisplayMate Technologies. Manufacturers do not pay anything to appear in this Guide.

Testing for the Guide
All of the video hardware is tested and evaluated by DisplayMate Technologies Labs. Awards are based on the accurate reproduction of DisplayMate's most challenging test patterns and test photos using the DisplayMate Multimedia Editions. For in-depth descriptions of the testing and analysis refer to our comprehensive Display Technology Shoot-Out article series for HDTV and Large Screen Displays and Small Mobile Displays.

Models in the Guide
All of the models in the Guide are recent models, but not necessarily the latest model - since manufacturers often upgrade their models more than once a year. The differences between recent models are generally minor, although the manufacturer's marketing materials will make them sound like major improvements they almost never are - the differences are generally incremental improvements.

CRT Models
All of the CRT models listed in the Guide are no longer being manufactured and can only be purchased used, from old inventory, from specialty dealers, or refurbished. We continue to include these Best CRTs because they deliver near perfect color and gray scale accuracy, outstanding Contrast and Black Levels, near perfect viewing angles, and no motion artifacts. They deliver excellent picture quality and make excellent Reference Displays, although CRTs have their own unique issues and shortcomings. Refer to our Display Technology Shoot-Out articles for an in-depth discussion and analysis.

Printing the Guide: If your browser is improperly printing some pages with text cutoff on the right edge then either print in Landscape mode or reduce the font size (View Menu - Text Size) and margins (File Menu - Page Setup). Broken Links: Manufacturers are constantly moving their web pages around. If you find a broken link please let us know by sending Email to info.dm@displaymate.com

Award Primary Award Categories Award

  Best Computer Display Awards
   Reference Monitors       CRT Monitors       LCD Monitors   
   Widescreen Monitors       Large Screen PC-TV       Monochrome Monitors   

  Best Large Display Awards
   Large Screen Monitors       Large Screen PC-TV       Plasma Displays   
   Lightweight Projectors       Projectors       LED Wall Displays   

  Best Mobile Display Awards
   Best Mobile Display       Best Picture Quality       New Display Technology   
   Portable Photo Viewers       Portable Video Players       Game Consoles   

  Best Computer Signal Source Awards
   Graphics Boards       Image Processors         

  Best Television Display Awards
   Reference Monitors       Standard TV Receivers       Large Screen PC-TV   
   High Definition TVs       HDTV Technologies   

  Best Television Signal Source Awards
   Computer Generated       DVD Players       Blue-ray Players   
   Video Processors   

  Best Display Equipment Awards
   Projection Screens       D6500 Lighting       Photometry and Colorimetry   
   Video Electronics       Video Cables   

Award Best Computer Display Awards Award

Award Reference Monitors

Sony Electronics   |   GDM-F520   CRT
19.8 inch (viewable) with resolutions up to 2048 x 1536 at 85 Hz.
This is our Reference Standard for evaluating all computer displays and projectors.
This product is no longer being manufactured.

Eizo   |   Color Edge CG211   LCD   Digital DVI Input
21.3 inch gamma calibrated display with a native resolution of 1600 x 1200.
This is the finest LCD monitor that we have ever tested.

Award Best CRT Computer Monitors
Sub-Categories:

    CRT Shadow Mask
    Viewsonic   |   G225f
    20.0 inch (viewable) with resolutions up to 2048 x 1536 at 80 Hz.
    Horizontal Dot Pitch is 0.20mm.
    This product is no longer being manufactured.

    CRT Aperture Grille
    Sony Electronics   |   GDM-C520K Artisan
    19.8 inch (viewable) with resolutions up to 2048 x 1536 at 85 Hz.
    This product is no longer being manufactured.

Award Best LCD Computer Monitors
Sub-Categories:

    LCD   -   Digital DVI + Analog Inputs
    19 inch Monitors
    NEC   |   MultiSync LCD1990SX  
    19.0 inch Active Matrix display with a native resolution of 1280 x 1024.

    20 and 21 inch Monitors
    Eizo   |   Color Edge CG211
    21.3 inch gamma calibrated display with a native resolution of 1600 x 1200.

    22 to 29 inch Monitors
    Samsung   |   T240HD-1  
    24.0 inch 16:10 Widescreen Active Matrix display with a native resolution of 1920 x 1200.

    Large Screen LCD Monitors
    NEC   |   LCD3090WQXi  
    30 inch Widescreen 16:10 Aspect Ratio display with a native resolution of 2560 x 1600.

Award Best Widescreen Monitors
Sub-Categories:

    CRT Widescreen
    Sony Electronics   |   GDM-FW900
    22.5 inch (viewable) 16:10 Aspect Ratio with resolutions up to 2304 x 1440 at 80 Hz.
    This product is no longer being manufactured.

    LCD Widescreen
    NEC   |   LCD3090WQXi  
    30 inch Widescreen 16:10 Aspect Ratio display with a native resolution of 2560 x 1600.

Award Best Combination Large Screen HDTV and Computer Monitor
Sony Electronics   |   KDL-55XBR8
55 inch Widescreen 16:9 LCD HDTV and computer monitor with a native resolution of 1920 x 1080.
This large screen display is outstanding as an HDTV and giant computer monitor.
This is no longer the lastest model but remains our favorite.

Award Best Monochrome CRT Computer Monitors
Clinton Electronics   |   Products
High resolution monochrome displays provide much sharper images than color CRTs.

Award Best Large Display Awards Award

Award Best Large Screen Monitors
Sub-Categories:

    Direct View
    NEC   |   LCD3090WQXi  
    30 inch Widescreen 16:10 Aspect Ratio LCD display with a native resolution of 2560 x 1600

    Rear Projection
    Mitsubishi   |   MegaView Wall VS-SH10U
    67 inch DLP display with a native resolution of 1280 x 1024 at 60 Hz.

Award Best Plasma Display
Panasonic Professional   |   TH-50PF20U
50 inch 16:9 Aspect Ratio display with a native resolution of 1920 x 1080.
This is an outstanding Plasma monitor.

Award Best Combination Large Screen HDTV and Computer Monitor
Sony Electronics   |   KDL-55XBR8
55 inch Widescreen 16:9 LCD HDTV and computer monitor with a native resolution of 1920 x 1080.
This large screen display is outstanding as an HDTV and giant computer monitor.
This is no longer the lastest model but remains our favorite.

Award Best Lightweight Projectors
Sub-Categories:

    Ultra-Light Projectors
    To be announced.

    Lightweight Projectors
    To be announced.

Award Best Projectors
Sub-Categories:

    DLP : Single Chip Projectors
    To be announced.

    DLP : 3 Chip Projectors
    Digital Projection   |   Products
    Up to 30,000 ANSI Lumens with native resolutions up to 1920 x 1200.

    LCD Projectors < 3000 Lumens
    Epson   |   Products
    Up to 2,000 ANSI Lumens with a native resolutions up to 1920 x 1080.

    LCD Projectors > 3000 Lumens
    Barco   |   Products
    Up to 30,000 ANSI Lumens with native resolutions up to 2048 x 1536.

    LCoS Projectors
    JVC Professional   |   D-ILA Products
    Up to 3,500 ANSI Lumens with native resolutions up to 4096 x 2400.

Award Best LED Wall Display
To be Announced.
Very high intensity large format outdoor displays.

Award Best Mobile Display Awards Award

Award Best Mobile Display
Apple   |   new iPad   In Plane Switching IPS LCD
Excellent 9.7 inch 4:3 Aspect Ratio display with a native resolution of 2048 x 1536.
Very accurate colors and picture quality. Better than most HDTVs.

Award Best Mobile Picture Quality
Apple   |   new iPad   In Plane Switching IPS LCD
Excellent 9.7 inch 4:3 Aspect Ratio display with a native resolution of 2048 x 1536.
Very accurate colors and picture quality. Better than most HDTVs.

Award Best New Display Technology
Samsung   |   Galaxy S   Super Organic Light Emitting Diode OLED
Excellent 4.0 inch 5:3 Aspect Ratio display with a native resolution of 800 x 480.
Super OLED technology is already very impressive and rapidly evolving and improving.

Award Best Portable Photo Viewer
Apple   |   new iPad   In Plane Switching IPS LCD
Excellent 9.7 inch 4:3 Aspect Ratio display with a native resolution of 2048 x 1536.
Very accurate colors and picture quality. Better than most HDTVs.

Award Best Portable Video Player
Apple   |   new iPad   In Plane Switching IPS LCD
Excellent 9.7 inch 4:3 Aspect Ratio display with a native resolution of 2048 x 1536.
Very accurate colors and picture quality. Better than most HDTVs.

Award Best Portable Game Console Display
Sony   |   PSP   PlayStation Portable
Very Good 4.3 inch 16:9 Aspect Ratio display with a native resolution of 480 x 272.

Award Best Computer Signal Source Awards Award

The secret to high image quality begins with a high quality signal source.

Award Best Graphics Boards
Rated for image quality excellence - not for speed performance or 2D-3D features.
Recommended for evaluating and viewing high quality monitors, projectors and HDTVs.
The models listed are product lines - so the features and specifications may not apply to all models.
We use all of these boards in the DisplayMate Labs for our own testing programs and Shoot-Outs.

nVidia   |   GeForce
HDMI, DVI to 2560 x 1600, 1080p Component Video, Analog VGA to 2048 x 1536, S-Video, Composite Video.

Matrox   |   Parhelia
DVI to 1920 x 1200, 1080p Component Video, Analog VGA to 2048 x 1536, S-Video, Composite Video.

AMD   |   ATI Radeon HD  
HDMI, DVI to 2560 x 1600, 1080p Component Video, Analog VGA to 2048 x 1536, S-Video, Composite Video.

Award Best Graphics Board for Computer and Video Monitors, Projectors and HDTVs

nVidia   |   GeForce
The Best all around board for driving Computer and Video Monitors, Projectors and HDTVs.
See the Sub-Categories for details.

Sub-Categories:

    Digital DVI and HDMI Outputs
    In principle all digital sources are equivalent. Occasionally, some combinations of graphics
    boards and displays won't work properly together. Use the DisplayMate Pixel Tracking and Phase,
    Moire Montage, and Gray Scale Linearity test patterns to check for accurate transmission.

    CRT Analog VGA Output - Best performance for CRTs
    Best analog signal transient response with the least overshoot and ringing.

    Matrox   |   Parhelia
    Analog VGA to 2048 x 1536.

    nVidia   |   GeForce
    Analog VGA to 2048 x 1536.

    Flat Panel Analog VGA Output - Best performance for LCD, Plasma, DLP, LCoS
    Best analog signal quality with the best Pixel Tracking and Phase performance and
    the least digital pixel noise resulting in the best analog flat panel image sharpness.

    nVidia   |   GeForce
    Analog VGA to 2048 x 1536.

    Resolution and Video Mode Support
    Support for the largest number of different resolutions and video modes that are used by
    displays is very important. Many boards allow users to program some non-standard modes.

    nVidia   |   GeForce
    The largest set of manufacturer supported video modes.

    BIOS and VESA Video Mode Compatibility
    For running DisplayMate Professional for DOS and other DOS applications.

    AMD   |   ATI Radeon HD  
    Excellent and accurate support for all PC BIOS and VESA Modes.

    nVidia   |   GeForce
    Excellent and accurate support for all PC BIOS and VESA Modes.

    NTSC / PAL Television Output
    Matrox   |   Parhelia
    Excellent NTSC / PAL S-Video and Composite Video signal outputs.

    Component Video Television Output
    High quality analog component video for Standard and High Definition Televisions.

    Matrox   |   Parhelia
    Best Component Video signal outputs.

    AMD   |   ATI Radeon HD  
    Excellent Component Video signal outputs.

    nVidia   |   GeForce
    Excellent Component Video signal outputs.

Award Best Image Processors and Scalers
Pixelworks   |   Products
Excellent input signal processing and scaling chips found inside many high quality displays.

Award Best Television Display Awards Award

Award Reference Monitors
JVC Professional   |   DLA-HRM1U
48 inch 16:9 1920 x 1080 rear-projection LCoS monitor. This is the finest High Definition monitor available.
The HRM1 has better all around image quality than the traditional CRT Reference Monitor below.

Sony Electronics   |   BVM-A32E1WU  
32 inch 16:9 CRT monitor with a resolution of 1000 TV lines, digital and analog inputs.
This is the finest CRT Reference Studio Monitor but is outperformed by the JVC DLA-HRM1U above.
This product is no longer being manufactured.

Award Best Standard Television Receiver
Sony Electronics   |   KV-40XBR800
40 inch flat 4:3 CRT with NTSC, 480p, 720p and 1080i modes, and component inputs.
This product is no longer being manufactured.

Award Best Combination Large Screen HDTV and Computer Monitor
Sony Electronics   |   KDL-55XBR8
55 inch Widescreen 16:9 LCD HDTV and computer monitor with a native resolution of 1920 x 1080.
This large screen display is outstanding as an HDTV and giant computer monitor.
This is no longer the lastest model but remains our favorite.

Award Best High Definition Television
Panasonic Professional   |   TH-50PF20U
50 inch 16:9 Aspect Ratio display with a native resolution of 1920 x 1080.
This Plasma HDTV display delivered outstanding picture quality, including the best
True Contrast Ratio, Black Level, Color accuracy, Gray Scale and Intensity Scale accuracy,
and True Viewing Angle in our LCD-Plasma Display Technology Shoot-Out.
The PF series is available in a number of screen sizes from 50 to 103 inches.

Award Best High Definition Televisions by Technology
Sub-Categories:

    CRT Direct View
    Sony Electronics   |   KV-34XBR970
    34 inch flat 16:9 CRT with NTSC, 1080i, 720p and 480p modes, and component and HDMI inputs.
    This product is no longer being manufactured.

    LCD Direct View
    Sony Electronics   |   KDL-55XBR8
    55 inch Widescreen 16:9 LCD HDTV with a native resolution of 1920 x 1080.
    This is no longer the lastest model but remains our favorite.

    Plasma
    Panasonic Professional   |   TH-50PF20U
    50 inch 16:9 Aspect Ratio display with a native resolution of 1920 x 1080.

    DLP Rear Projection
    Mitsubishi   |   LaserVue L65-A90
    65 inch 16:9 DLP with a native resolution of 1920 x 1080.
    The featured Extended Color Gamut modes are Not recommended if you want good color accuracy.

Award Best Television Signal Source Awards Award

The secret to high image quality begins with a high quality signal source.

Award Best Computer Generated Video
See the Best Computer Signal Source Awards for additional information
Sub-Categories:

    Digital DVI and HDMI Outputs
    In principle all digital sources are equivalent. Occasionally, some combinations of graphics
    boards and displays won't work properly together. Use the DisplayMate Pixel Tracking and Phase,
    Moire Montage, and Gray Scale Linearity test patterns to check for accurate transmission.

    NTSC / PAL Television Output
    Matrox   |   Parhelia
    Excellent NTSC / PAL S-Video and Composite Video signal outputs.

    Component Video Television Output
    High quality analog component video for standard and high definition televisions.

    Matrox   |   Parhelia
    Best Component Video signal outputs.

    AMD   |   ATI Radeon HD  
    Excellent Component Video signal outputs.

    nVidia   |   GeForce
    Excellent Component Video signal outputs.

Award Best DVD Player
Denon Electronics   |   DVD-5910
With digital HDMI, DVI, IEEE-1394 (Firewire), and analog Component Video, S-Video and Composite Video outputs.
Includes a Silicon Optix video processor for deinterlacing and a DVDO video processor for scaling.

Award Best Blu-ray Player
Pioneer Electronics   |   Elite BDP-09FD
The unit provides excellent digital and analog outputs and excellent video processing and scaling.

Award Best Video Processors and Scalers
Silicon Optix   |   Products
Outstanding 1080i motion adaptive deinterlacing and scaling.
For branded products look for the Realta, HQV, Hollywood Quality Video, and powered by Teranex identifiers.

Award Best Display Equipment Awards Award

Award Best Projection Screens
Stewart Filmscreen   |   Front Projections Screens
Superb screens any size up to 40' x 90'.

Award Best D6500 Bias Lighting
CinemaQuest   |   Ideal-Lume
Highly recommended for backlighting the walls behind all direct-view and rear-projection monitors, TVs, HDTVs.

Award Best Photometry and Colorimetry Instruments
Photo Research   |   PR-880   Laboratory Photometer
This is a high performance laboratory reference photometer.

Konica Minolta   |   CS-2000   CS-200   Spectroradiometers
The CS-2000 is a high performance 512 channel laboratory reference Spectroradiometer.
The CS-200 is an excellent, much faster and less expensive Chromameter.

Konica Minolta   |   CA-100Plus for CRTs   CA-210 for LCDs   CS-100A for Projectors
These are excellent color analyzers for production lines and test labs.

Award Best Video Distribution Amplifiers, Interfaces, Processors, Switchers
Extron Electronics   |   Products
A broad line of excellent analog and digital products.

Gefen   |   Products
A broad line of excellent digital products.

Kramer Electronics   |   Products
A broad line of excellent analog and digital products.

Award Best Video Cables
Sub-Categories:

    Digital DVI and HDMI Cables 15 feet or less
    Amazon   |   Cables
    For the DisplayMate Labs we have bought large quantities of generic digital cables costing
    around $15 from Amazon and they have all worked perfectly. It's pointless to spend more,
    but be cautious with cables that are priced substantially cheaper than this.

    Digital DVI and HDMI Cables 15 feet or more
    For longer runs increasingly higher quality cables are generally necessary.
    Results will depend on the quality of the electronics in the signal transmitters and receivers.
    We have runs up to 75 feet. For very long runs consider Fiber, CAT-5 or Distribution Amplifiers.
    We have tested cables from: Extron Electronics   Gefen   Kramer Electronics
    and found them excellent.

    Analog Cables
    Cables that carry analog signals must be very high quality in order to deliver high image quality.
    The longer the cable the more important this is. For the most common short 6 foot cables any
    reasonable quality cable will deliver good on-screen performance.
    For longer runs, get high quality cables.
    We have tested cables from: Extron Electronics   Gefen   Kramer Electronics
    and found them excellent.


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Information for Manufacturers

  • Manufacturers are welcome to issue Press Releases regarding Award selection in DisplayMate's Best Video Hardware Guide™, however, using the DisplayMate®, or Best Video Hardware Guide™ trademarks for advertising, promotion, or any other purpose is strictly forbidden, unless you obtain the prior written permission of DisplayMate Technologies Corporation.

  • In order to be considered for inclusion in the Guide a product must first receive an outstanding review or Editor's Choice award in any of the leading publications that use DisplayMate.

  • Manufacturers that wish to have a product considered for DisplayMate's Best Video Hardware Guide should contact DisplayMate Technologies at info.dm@displaymate.com

  • Specialized or custom hardware not widely available for sale is ineligible for the Guide.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   
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