Crystal clear display, flexible controls, narrow viewing angle
May 20, 2011
Review by gsearle
Rated a Very Helpful Review
User Rating: Excellent
Ease of Use:
Pros:Very sharp display with excellent color, attractive design, narrow footprint.
Cons:Narrow viewing angle, non-adjustable stand, "Magic" settings can conflict with each other.
The Bottom Line: Excellent monitor for the price, but not for the graphics professional.
I purchased this monitor to replace two bulky, aging, power-hungry CRT displays and am very pleased with it. The widescreen 1920x1080 resolution easily takes the place of two CRT screens. The generous desktop space and sharp display is a pleasure to use.
Recommend this product?
Only two connectors are provided for analog VGA or digital DVI input, and both may be connected at the same time if you wish to be able to switch the monitor between two different devices. The VGA circuit quantizes the analog input signal extremely well with no bleed between pixel elements at the monitor's native resolution. It will scale lower resolutions up, with the option of stretching the image "wide" for non 16:9 aspect ratios.
This is not a monitor for graphics professionals. The viewing angle above and below is very narrow, so you must be looking at the monitor straight-on for accurate color and contrast. It does provides some special viewing modes that adjust its color curves for above- and below-level viewing, but this is a crude substitute for an adjustable stand (which you may purchase yourself to attach to the back of the monitor).
It comes with a basic, non-adjustable plastic stand which attaches to the bottom of the monitor. This is designed to hold the monitor for straight-on viewing, but it does sag a little. I had to place a shim under it to tilt it upwards so that I could view it straight-on while sitting at my desk. You may want to place it on a raised surface on your desk.
Samsung claims a staggering 70,000:1 contrast ratio on this monitor. This is really a 10,000:1 monitor with a special "dynamic contrast" mode which adjusts the contrast, gamma curve, and brightness depending on the picture signal to obtain a wider potential range. I found this automatic adjustment to be distracting, and some display conditions with mostly mid-range content actually faded out quite a bit.
As a typical Samsung product, the controls are touch-sensitive and take some getting used to. The controls and menus are fairly standard as far as monitor controls go, with one button that you can assign for quick access to any function. The settings are very flexible and give you a lot of control over your display.
When adjusting the levels on this monitor, you can either use one of the several "Magic" automatic modes, or adjust the levels yourself. You will find that these modes can conflict with each other, so you would need to pick one and stick with it. I prefer to use the manual controls myself, bypassing the "Magic" menus.
The "MagicEco" mode simply adjusts the power draw of the CFL backlight. This backlight turns on instantly, but you will notice a slight dimness to the display until it warms up completely (within a minute).
As an inexpensive monitor, this is an excellent choice. It has a few odd quirks to get used to, but nothing that interferes with its functionality.
Amount Paid (US$): 189
Operating System: Windows
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