Why You Need a 30″ Screen

By Deane Barker on October 3, 2008

Cool Tools: 30″ Cinema Display: A pretty good explanation of why you need a 30” monitor.

Within a few days of using a large screen I began to experience a much more significant effect, though: when more of the things I needed to look at were already in view, the amount of time spent on visual context switches went down. Having more documents in view not only reduces the time consumed by the switch, but also the “recovery time” needed to remember what I was doing.

I have a 24” Dell monitor, and I don’t think I could go back. I also don’t think I would go back to two smaller screens either. I used to think managing two screens independently would be better because you could maximize one app to each, but having a 24” screen has really eliminated my need to desire to maximize anyway.



  1. Interesting — I just got a 24″ iMac and I love it. BUT I still use Spaces (virtual desktops) although as you say, I don’t maximize windows much any more.

    I still use two 18″ monitors at work, and it’s fine… but we’re slated to get two 22″ monitors each… I’m interested to see if 22″ is as good as 24″.

    Then there’s the guy who got a 42″ monitor (!!!) from Dell…

  2. Do you orient the monitor horizontally or vertically?

    I’ve never been able to do it vertically. The narrow-ness of that set-up is really jarring.

  3. Im a kid and I just got a new tower and monitor. I whent from an 18″ to a 22″ and now I feel realy rich cause my family isnt very wealthy and this is awsome.But I have a question…. If I have a 22″ widescreen monitor how do I figure out the Bottom times the side. I mean without useing a tape measure or a rule. Cause the screen I have now is 48cm along the bottom and 27cm along the sides if I use a tapemeasure but is there an wasier way>??

  4. Dual screens are the way to go. I’ve done this for probably over 7 years. I use one for my main work area, and the other one for communications tools (email, IM, etc.) Of course everyone’s work patterns are different, but the added space always helps.

    Recently, I’ve taken to adding a third screen: my laptop. I set it up next to the other two that are attached to my workstation, and use Synergy to share the mouse and keyboard across the network. I use the laptop to test the websites I am developing, as it satisfies the requirement of being an “external” client.

    Whenever someone new comes in, they boggle as they watch my mouse cursor move across all three screens as if they were one big panoramic wrap-around display.

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