Product Type: Viewsonic LCD monitors
Newest Review: ... the best mix of quality and price. Opening up the packaging, I was really impressed by the external design. The monitor is built with bl... more
Great value 22" monitor
Member Name: rambo26
Date: 25/10/09, updated on 25/10/09 (169 review reads)
Advantages: 22" size, stylish design, great low price
Disadvantages: No DVI socket, not perfect picture
When my 19" widescreen Xerox PC monitor suddenly stopped working, I didn't hesitate to order a new and bigger screen to replace it. Before the Xerox LCD, I had owned a 17" Iiyama CRT and a 17" Neovo TFT LCD. I definitely prefer monitors that display rich colours, sharp images and have a large screen. I also think wide screens are a better design, in part due to my preference of stacking windows side to side and not on top of each other. Using 15" and smaller screens when I was younger, I was always impressed by 17" and 19" CRTs (which seemed huge to me before 2000). I like big screens but of course the price can increase steeply with the size variable.
Looking through various online stores and at different models, I found the Viewsonic VA2216w on offer for about £110 including VAT. This seemed great value for a new 22" widescreen monitor, perhaps the quality would lack? Impressed by what what I'd seen, I ordered it promptly.
Viewsonic are monitor specialists so one would imagine they make good quality products. Friends and family of mine are quality connoisseurs and prefer brands like Iiyama, Sony and perhaps Samsung, but I like to find the best mix of quality and price.
Opening up the packaging, I was really impressed by the external design. The monitor is built with black and silver plastic and is quite thin and lightweight, the plastic border of the screen is narrow. The bezel stand is also black and is fairly sturdy yet inconspicuous, allowing up and down angle movement. I think the physical design looks great and is the best of any monitor I've owned, it also nicely matches the rest of my PC.
Starting up the screen with my existing PC and windows installation and the handy 'auto-adjustment', I immediately thought the image looked very good, and loved the big screen size. As with most modern LCD screens, you will want to use the maximum resolution for all your applications, as it most suits the screen size and dimensions. In this case the fairly large 1680x1050, 16:10 aspect ratio, widescreen resolution. Continued examination lead me to think there is slight blurriness to the display, but this is very slight and not a bother. A more expensive monitor would surely bring a crisper image, but I'm happy with this compromise. The colour is quite rich, especially when I increase 'Digital Vibrance' under Nvidia 'Colour correction'. I like to do this to get richer shades of colour, but it might not be to everyone's taste. Another good thing is that there were no dead pixels on this monitor, when my Xerox had an annoying green pixel. Of course I can't guarantee others will be clear of dead pixels. Overall, I'm happy with the quality, in a way I thought it would be worse due to the almost dangerously low price!
The specifications of importance are:
Display area: 21.6 inch
True resolution: 1680x1050
Dynamic contrast ratio: 2000:1
Brightness: 300 cd/m2
Response time: 5ms
It is often recommended to ignore contrast ratio figures as they aren't standardised and the impressively high ones aren't visible to the human eye. Whatever the case may be, 1000:1 or higher should suffice for most people. Brightness in candela per square metre is actually to indicate how visible the screen is in bright conditions. It seems most monitors have 300 cd/m2, so this also seems fine. I think for monitors, the specifications alone don't give the true picture (literally and metaphorically!), and you need to see the image for yourself. There is also the slight annoyance of only VGA connectivity and not the newer DVI format. I use an adapter and it works fine, but be aware of this limitation.
I just love playing games on a bigger monitor like this, you can see things further away, spotting details more easily and the whole experience is more immersive. I tend to play first-person shooters the most, and these are one of the most suited to a larger screen, allowing you to aim more precisely and see things more easily. I also now spend a lot of time multi-tasking in the way Windows was meant to be used, by having two windows side by side. Perhaps a Firefox window (on Dooyoo of course) on the right and Windows media player with a video playing on the left. This lets me be more productive and to just do more things, I recommend others try doing it! With a small monitor or resolution this is much less of an effective method.
In the non-near future I would probably go for a 24" monitor of higher quality, but this is absolutely fine for my current use. I think that 24" is possibly the ultimate size for a desktop computer screen and any bigger would probably involve too much actual looking around and you would have to position yourself much further away.
This is not the best monitor around for visual perfection, but the price is bordering on amazing. A great monitor for gaming or not, I highly recommend it.
(review also at Ciao)
Summary: Stylish and big PC monitor for a very low price
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