As IPS panels become more and more popular, the prices will continue to drop. The time when every monitor with an LCD panel other then TN was consider the professional’s choice has come and gone (well obviously they are still the professional’s choice, only cheaper and more accessible). The budget monitor manufacturer AOC confirms this notion by launching two IPS-based screens on the cheap end of the scale–one 21.5-inch model and one 23-inch called i2252Vwh and i2352Vh respectively. The new monitors have all of the inherent characteristics of IPS panels including more accurate reproduction of the 16.7 million available colors in this case, wide (178 degree) viewing angles and just about everything else that you don’t get with a TN-based monitor. AOC’s new monitors are not as well equipped as Dell’s UltraSharp U2711 for example, but many amateur photographers and “prosumers” in all shapes and sizes will most likely be more than happy with an upgrade to one of AOC’s new models from their old washed-out TN displays.
Another interesting fact is that the manufacturer claims a response time of just 5 ms, which would make these panels perfectly suited even for gaming. IPS, which is no new technology in any sense of the word, has historically had a weak spot in the response time area–reinforcing the uses for professional applications and photography. It is therefore very promising that even the most affordable IPS monitors have started to come down to response times with the potential to appeal to the masses.
The reason why prices are dropping is primarily an increased demand for higher-quality panels, but also because the monitors now have the specs that make them truly desirable for consumers. A higher demand leads to increased production and in turn lower prices.
AOC’s new models come with Full HD resolution (1920 x 1080) and LED backlights, while the inputs are VGA, DVI and HDMI. The brightness and contrast values are also typical: 250 cd/m² and 1,000:1 static / 20,000,000:1 dynamic.