Any advice for good monitors to add at my workspace?

shauntothemax Member Posts: 14 Member
edited January 2022 in Social Club

hi there,

been working quite intensively lately on my Ableton and VST's, enjoying that a lot. I bought some great monitors (Tannoy Gold 8), and would like to complete my setup with a big monitorscreen to be placed on my producer desk. I have a Zaor Miza 88, see foto. I bought a second stand for the right monitor, which is gonna give more space on the desk.

I'm just thinking on what type of monitor would be best and whether to place it on the top or middel shelf of the desk. The keyboard drawer is going to be either open or closed, and i have to find a way to put my computer keyboard and mouse in a place where i can access them easily without constantly reaching for them.

So placement of monitor is important, i'd like to hear your experiences. The way i look at it now, is that the top shelf is prob not gonna be a good space, since you have to look upwards the whole time. Anybody experienced this situation? Ideas, thoughts are welcome..




  • JesterMgee
    JesterMgee Member Posts: 2,474 Expert
    Answer ✓

    I can say as someone who has built their whole desk to specifically suit my dimension and used computers for 30 years, if long use is required and you don't want to suffer issues with cramps and pains, correct setup and spending money on that first (IMO before gear) is the best thing you can do.

    I have my monitors on a shelf but it is specifically measured for my exact sitting eye height so my eyes are basically centre of screen when I sit straight. The shelf I built custom and actually estimated it wrong initially, it was about 1 inch higher but after a month I noticed I was looking slightly up and getting slight neck cramps so I pulled my setup apart and cut that inch off the legs of the shelf.

    Because the desk is also a lift desk it rises to the same point when standing so my neck is never looking up or down. Note my centre monitor has no stand, it sits flat to the shelf and the side monitors are a little smaller because they have stands but the tops all line up. Paired with an ergonomic chair, ball mouse and a foot stool I have not suffered back, neck or arm/wrist issues in 10 years where I use to get all the above by the time I was 30. Paying for a chiropractor was enough incentive to invest in proper equipment.

    I can't suggest a monitor specifically juts would first do a test when sitting to determine where your eyes fall then decide if that shelf is a little high/low because down the track if you are cranking your neck up it will start to cause you issues.

  • nico5
    nico5 Member Posts: 49 Helper
    edited January 2022 Answer ✓

    I'm using a big screen 40" 4K TV as my main monitor on my desk (I also have a keyboard drawer similar to yours - except mine is a self-made IKEA hack 😀 )

    However, if you hate having to move your head, when looking at various parts of the monitor, then this wouldn't be a good solution for you.

    I like having move my head a little - makes me feel like I'm in front of a large wall of hardware 😎

  • JesterMgee
    JesterMgee Member Posts: 2,474 Expert

    Yeah my keyboard draw is also self made, it's scrap wood and a couple of soft-close kitchen draw sliders left over from a kitchen renovation I was doing, so cost nothing.

    I had a 42" TV as my main monitor for a while as I was into PC gaming too (still am) but I found it very difficult to use that close, bad for the eyes and as you mentioned I had to move my head way too much it was slowing me down on a lot of things as moving the eyes is far better so I downgraded. My guess is you are still rather young (30 or under)? if you use your computer for 4 hours at a time daily you will eventually start to feel it.

  • Milkman
    Milkman Member Posts: 200 Advisor

    Ive got a 32" BenQ PD3200U screen, which is aimed at graphic design and production professionals.

    It still sits around $499-599, but its a nice screen, it has a KVM switch built into it, an audio chipset and speakers, many in/outs, a nice external puck controller, and EXCELLENT image quality. It is not the highest DPI of the bunch (there are more expensive versions of this with higher DPI and HDR), but it is high DPI and drives my audio production environment well.

    A criticism of this screen: if you've used it for 10,000+ hours like I have, you do begin getting light ghosting/burn-in. I see very light burn-in right now if I leave cubase up a couple hours and come back. When I move windows around on-screen I see a light ghost for about 15 seconds. Screen is 4 years old - but HEAVILY used for gaming, production, browsing, everything.

  • shauntothemax
    shauntothemax Member Posts: 14 Member

    hi there, thanks for responding. i've used a Sony Bravia TV also, since i have it in the house. But i'm wearing screen glasses, for which the best distance to the screen is about 75 cm to 100 cm. I was looking into curved screens, cause they don't make you move your head too much. No, i'm not that young (50 up), so I know how it feels if you're working environment doesn't support your workflow.

    As for draw, i have a new drawer now for the keyboard. The old one broke cause i attached a drawer myself underneath it for the computer monitor and mouse. That's another one i got to crack, how to design my workflow that i don't have to move so much between keys and computer keyboard...

  • shauntothemax
    shauntothemax Member Posts: 14 Member

    did try the 4K screen (sony bravia), but still uncomfortable. Looking into curved screens now...

  • shauntothemax
    shauntothemax Member Posts: 14 Member

    did try the 4K screen (sony bravia), but still uncomfortable. your screen seems to quite high (although can't see it on the photo), don't you get neck and shoulder pains from looking up? i'm looking into ultrawide screens now..see if that would help

  • Milkman
    Milkman Member Posts: 200 Advisor

    Sorry -- that was a wide angle photo in order to get the full desk area. Makes it look much higher. ; )

    I also have an Uplift Desk with the motorized lifter, so I raise/lower my desk all day for ergonomic benefits. The BenQ screen goes up/down with it, and also on its own base. The screen surface is actually about 2 - 2.5 feet from my face, and my eyes are aligned with the top 3/4 of the screen. (I was an ergonomics assessor at my old job).

    At this point., I have a LOT of neck/shoulder pain that I've had to go to the doctor about. : / Ive been a gamer for 38 years, and have spent 100,000s of hours in front of screens and systems between my job, hobby. Right now the pain in my right shoulder/neck/back is very minimal, and I CONSTANTLY think about it. I get up every 15 mins and stretch.

  • shauntothemax
    shauntothemax Member Posts: 14 Member

    hi milkman, yeah hear ya. Ergonomics are a b@#$ if you don't take care of them. Since i'm a profesional piano player, i try to avoid ruining my back n shoulders by looking for the mimimal amount of 'switching' between the verious devices, mainly midi keyboard (Arturia MK88 II), and computer keyboard and wireless mousepad. With some applications its really nasty, like in Sibelius you really need the numeric pad for entering notes. And yet switching between the alphabetic and the numeric section of computer keyboard is already a hassle.I really need both computer and midi keyboard at a specific height for me to work without constantly tensing my muscles...having a good monitor can also contribute i imagine...

    I want to have a setup that works as intuitive as possible. So taking as much switching out as possible, having the majority of controls under my fingertips. I was also looking into buying a loupedeck, see: expensive, but might save a lot of hand and shoulderpain. anyway, just sharing my thought...

  • JesterMgee
    JesterMgee Member Posts: 2,474 Expert

    My old...old monitors were BenQ back when things were still in a 4:3 square format, first LCD screens I even had after CRT screens and they lasted for about 10+ years, I use to use them as dual screens.

    Monitor I have now is a 27" AOC brand, very crisp but only 1080p but has done close to 10 years now, used for about 6 hours daily for a range of things, no burn in issues, no ghosting or lagging refresh and not even a single dead pixel I can see. It's one reason I don't wanna upgrade because a mate who purchased a huge rurved monster has a single dead pixel after just 3 months which has gone "open" so shines white and once you see it you cannot un-see it especially in a dark movie or game as it is just off centre of screen.

  • Kubrak
    Kubrak Member Posts: 2,762 Expert

    Cannot recomend mark or size of the screen. I agree with Jester that very important is the placement. I have spent over 35 years at the screen, almost 100 000 hours till now.... And another 100 000 hours more to the end of my life, I hope.

    In my opinion, the right vertical position is that eyes are centered at the upper third of the monitor, not at the middle. But one has to try.... Also the distance is important.

  • Simchris
    Simchris Member Posts: 184 Advisor

    I have the 32-inch 4K BENQ I run at 1440p, simulates my prior Apple Cinema Display (27 inch), just everything bigger for my tired eyes. I have the standard BENQ, not the photo one with hood (I have 27-inch photo model with hood). Also added the LG 48-inch OLED which I love.

  • NodeOperator
    NodeOperator Member Posts: 11 Member

    Build your own if you can, think about your preferred style of music making, keyboardist, Push, MPC drum, modular synths, and go from there, this is your place. Make it work for you, make it inspiring to be in, it’s pretty obvious what’s knackering about a studio, though lot’s of artists and performers are enjoying a standing position these days. I think that’s great, especially with hardware. I lack the room, but, it’s amazing what you can build when your up against limitations, just like your DAW :)

  • shauntothemax
    shauntothemax Member Posts: 14 Member

    that desk looks super pro to me...if you build it yourself...congrats :) I guess your setup is more Machine (or Push? can't see it that well) operated right? I also use the computer keyboard and mouse a lot, since i work most in arrangement mode. it's a little bit different mindset i think...

  • xr0ckstar808
    xr0ckstar808 Member Posts: 6 Member
    edited January 2022

    49 inch Dell super ultra wide. They also make a 46 inch and a 34 inch I believe.. the 34 probably would have been enough but I'm crazy like that

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