Should I buy a 23” Aluminum ACD or the new 24” LED?
Disadvantages to the aluminum Cinema Display:
- No integrated power cord
- Not as bright
- Smaller contrast range and color gamut
- No integrated laptop AC power cord (that’s nice to have for laptop users)
Disadvantages to the new 24” LED Cinema Display:
- Probably more expensive, assuming the aluminum is used or refurbished
- Only mini-DisplayPort input. Only new Apple laptops can connect to it. The Mac Pro, iMac, Mac Mini, first-generation MacBook Air, and all non-unibody Apple laptops cannot connect to it.
- Glass instead of matte (you may consider this an advantage)
Disadvantages to both over a Dell 24xxFPW-series:
- A lot more expensive
- Stand isn’t height-adjustable
- Can’t rotate physical screen orientation
- Fewer controls
- Fewer inputs
- No VESA-mount support without additional $30 metal bracket
- No integrated card reader
- Fewer integrated USB ports (but the Dells don’t have Firewire ports)
If you don’t mind the physical appearance, the Dells are almost always the smartest buy. But I completely understand the appeal of the Apple displays if you’re willing to pay the premium and accept the limitations.