HP Display Blows The Test Center Away


The LP3065 isn't cheap or light; it simply provides the best display output we've ever seen


When Hewlett-Packard wants to blow away competitors with better performance, the company makes sure you know it—whether you're talking about PCs, servers or LCD monitors.

The CRN Test Center has had the opportunity to look at one of the biggest monsters in display technology that HP has ever developed, the HP LP3065 30-inch wide-screen LCD monitor. It's not a product that's designed for power savings -- although it's more efficient than we first thought. It's not a product that's designed for cost savings because we've been able to fashion a dual-monitor solution with more display area for about half the cost.

What the HP LP3065 is: Simply one of the best display experiences we've ever had without wearing those funny 3-D glasses. The software we typically use to benchmark out-of-the-box quality, DisplayMate's calibration testing suite, wasn't even quite enough to properly measure the crisp, clear viewing quality HP has produced.

First, the speeds and feeds:

The wide-screen display is 30 inches and maintains an out-of-the-box contrast ratio of 1,000-to-1, a 3,000-to-1 dynamic contrast ratio, 2,560-by-1,600 native resolution and 102 percent color gamut. What that means in real-world terms is this: For video viewing, for 3-D applications and for even simple productivity such as presentations, you almost feel like you could reach inside the screen. A 3-D star gave you the impression, on the screen, that you could spin it around with your hand.

From a power-consumption perspective, it measured a 90-watt power draw, which, frankly, is three times more than some of the PCs we've been looking at in the CRN Test Center lab in recent months. That's about the same as two monitors combined in one, dual-monitor configuration—but you do notice the difference in use. In terms of thermal engineering, the display never rose above room temperature (as measured with an infrared thermometer) during the period we tested it.

The thing is heavy, though. You can feel every one of the 30-plus pounds it weighs out of the box, and the display itself ships separately from the display stand. That makes setup trickier than a standard LCD. Also, a dual-link DVI graphics card is required for the HP LP3065 to work, which means it can't be integrated into just any workstation solution.

It did work great, however, on as low-end a desktop as our lab's Mac Mini. For those doing design work on the Mac OS X platform, for example, it's clear that this HP display has to be part of the discussion. Its quality of display, combined with Apple's technology, is just an outstanding solution.

We like dual-monitor solutions, particularly with components that make it easy and cost-effective, like the Kensington Dual-Monitor Adapter. Over the past two years, we've found they can offer tremendous value in productivity gains without adding too much extra cost.

But while the HP LP3065 is list-priced at $1,217, its ability to differentiate on quality can't be overlooked. Those engaged in high-touch design work or computer-assisted design, for example,
will find the value as soon as they lift all 30 pounds out of the box and get it up and running.

The bottom line: It's not cheap. It's not light. But the HP LP3065
provides simply the best display output we can ever remember seeing and is worth the higher cost of acquisition for those who live all day in a world where design quality is everything. We can recommend it for those scenarios.

BACKTALK: Get in touch with Ed Moltzen via e-mail at
edward.moltzen@ec.ubm.com.