I've been a programmer and coder for 20 years - here are 3 tips to improve your WFH experience with BenQ's GW2485TC and GW2785TC

Dennis Giam, AsiaOne's resident product manager, has about 20 years of experience in coding and programming - now he's sharing a few tips to help you along.
PHOTO: AsiaOne

After a year or two of working from home, it's inevitable that your desk starts to get a little cluttered - little notes you've placed around your desk for reminders and other work or leisure related paraphernalia might begin to pile up.

Not only that, long hours in front of your computer could also damage your health, impacting your eyesight and posture

Take a good look at your desk now: is it truly optimal for comfort and efficiency?

Even if it's good, it could be better - and sometimes it's best to take a few pages out of someone else's book, especially so if they've been in the industry for a decade or two.

To be precise, Dennis Giam, AsiaOne's product manager, has about 20 years of experience in coding and programming, which means he's probably got a few ideas about ensembling a good desk setup.

To optimise his setup even further, Dennis used BenQ's GW2485TC and GW2785TC monitors for a week, and was instantly a fan.

Eager to share his experience with us, Dennis spoke with us about how he used both monitors to elevate his work environment and care for his health at the same time.

Reduce eye strain by adjusting your screen settings

PHOTO: AsiaOne

Dennis pointed out that after a long day of work in front of a computer, eye strain proved to be one of the most painful problems for him.

"You get tired looking at a screen for a long time," shares Dennis, adding that staying focused becomes an issue when his eyes are tired.

Both BenQ monitors managed to help mitigate this problem for him through their exclusive coding mode, as Dennis explained.

"Coding mode brightens the text and dims the entire screen, so it's actually quite useful," he says, clarifying that the text stands out more on the monitor. "It doesn't strain my eyes as much anymore."

BenQ's coding mode off (left) and on. The difference in contrast is clear. PHOTO: BenQ

Usually, he would have to manually dim the brightness and increase contrast to achieve a similar effect and help him maintain his focus.

With coding mode, his focus, and thus his productivity, is improved, allowing him to stay engaged with projects longer and doing more with his time.

Additionally, the GW2485TC and GW2785TC come with low blue light and flicker-free technology, both of which decrease the strain on his eyes.

Finding it too tedious to keep track of when to take a break and how long a break should you take while working? BenQ also has Eye-CareU software that automates that for you.

PHOTO: AsiaOne

This software allows you to set reminders for you to rest your eyes and also detects when ambient light is too low, helping you manage and maintain an optimal work experience at your desk.

Furthermore, the annoyance that comes with constantly adjusting modes via the on-screen display is avoided through the Eye-CareU - it adjusts that for you through its interface.

Get at least a dual monitor setup - GW2485TC and GW2785TC - to improve your multitasking capabilities

PHOTO: AsiaOne

Whether multitasking actually helps work efficiency is debatable, but when it comes down to the line and multiple projects require immediate attention, multitasking becomes unavoidable.

The best you can do then is to work with what you have, but a dual monitor setup certainly helps.

"On one screen, you'll be able to do your coding, and on the other, you can compile and run the output," Dennis shares.

Outside of coding, having a dual monitor setup also makes transitioning between programming and online meetings much smoother.

"I have meetings almost everyday," Dennis says. "So sometimes I have to instantly go from coding to a Zoom meeting or vice versa - it's really convenient to have multiple monitors."

PHOTO: AsiaOne

Dennis also highlighted GW2485TC and GW2785TC's ergonomic design and their ability to rotate a full 90 degrees, turning the usual landscape orientation to portrait.

For best results, Dennis used the 24-inch monitor in portrait mode, while the 27-inch monitor was in landscape, matching the height of both monitors.

"The coding software doesn't actually use much of the screen [on landscape orientation]," he explained, "so if you change it to portrait mode, you can see many more lines of code."

For programmers and coders or anyone who deals with large amounts of text, this would improve reading fluidity and comprehension of what's on the screen, thus making work more efficient.

Free up desk space for a clearer mind

PHOTO: AsiaOne

Desk space is something vital to someone working from home, and a clear desk makes for a clean environment that is conducive for work and focus.

And while multiple monitors are nice, one obvious drawback of having multiple monitors is the desk space these monitors need and the awful mess wires can create.

The GW2485TC and GW2785TC, however, manage to avoid these problems with two important features that Dennis brought to our attention: the USB-C port that allows daisy chaining, and the monitors' built-in mic and speakers.

If you want a little extra space, you can rid your setup of the bulky desk lamp and grab BenQ's ScreenBar instead - it's mounted on the monitor so it takes up virtually no space on your desk.

PHOTO: AsiaOne

The built-in mic and speakers are also no-brainers when it comes to desk space - internalising them inside the monitor would mean less wires around your desk, and no bulky mic or speakers taking up space.

While quality might be a concern, Dennis shares that the two 2W speakers and noise-cancelling mic in the monitor performed well enough.

"[The speakers' sound quality] is actually quite clear," Dennis says, "and the mic comes with noise cancellation built into it - there's even a mute button, so it's very convenient."

And while headsets do save desk space, Dennis expressed that he wasn't too willing to wear headsets while working from home.

"In Singapore, if you don't have an air-conditioned room, after a while [of wearing headsets] your ears will get hot and sweaty," Dennis adds.

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Dennis emphasised that daisy chaining really helped save desk space by eliminating the number of wires needed to connect multiple monitors as part of a desk setup, adding that conventional multi-monitor setups would require wires such as the power cable, HDMI cable and another additional adapter. Daisy chaining using a USB-C cable sums that up into one.

"All you need is just one power cable for your notebook and two USB-C cables and you'll be able to daisy chain three displays together," Dennis explains.

That's not to mention the fact that USB-C cables are also very slim compared to the older, bulkier cables that may also add to the frustrating clutter around your desk.

Dennis, however, also noted some compatibility issues with Apple products - daisy chaining doesn't work for Macs, and only mirrors the screen.

Additionally, the BenQ Display Pilot software is needed to help configure the multi-monitor setup, and there's an additional multi-stream (MST) option within the monitors' settings themselves that require activation.

So unless you're an Apple user, be sure to take note if you're considering adding these space-saving monitors to your workspace while trying on these tips - you may find yourself working with greater comfort and efficiency than before.

BenQ's GW2485TC and GW2785TC are available at Shopee, Lazada and Amazon.

This article is brought to you in partnership with BenQ.

khooyihang@asiaone.com