We are ashamed to have mentally cast off Envision’s G2219w1 at first glance because it looked like a budget monitor. It’s budget in price only, for this 22-inch display offers exceptional picture quality for its class.
It wasn’t perfect, though—Envision’s display didn’t reach the same level of gray detail at the dark end of the grayscale as Gateway’s, but it was extremely close. Envision’s display beat out Gateway’s at the light end of the spectrum by, again, a very close margin.
We want to like this monitor, but too many issues stand in the way.
In DisplayMate, Gateway’s HD2201 consistently reproduced dark grayscale values, pushing out more dark shades of gray against a black background than we typically find from monitors of its class. The same can’t be said of the HD2201’s merely average ability to reproduce light shades of gray against white.
What's standing in this monitor's way? Find out after the cut.
Planar’s PL2210MW display is a classic representation of your average 22-inch display—a 6-bit TN panel that bears the mediocre image quality of that class. In DisplayMate, the 1680x1050 display’s grayscale range was acceptable, although it fell apart at the light end in both the grayscale test and when the screen was tasked with producing very light colors against a white background.
Full review after the jump! Or the bump. Possibly the bjump.
Rarely do you see a 22-inch display float near the price points of superior 24-inch panels. It’s just unheard of, for a smaller display would have to offer some kind of fantastic upgrade over what we typically find in this size classification to be worth the additional cost. How about an extra dimension?
Zalman’s ZM-M220W is the company’s first 3D display and it’s every bit as expensive as some of the best midrange monitors we’ve tested. We appreciate Zalman’s attempt at breaking through the fourth wall using a 3D technology that’s far cheaper than what we’ve seen on similar displays. But we would still trade this extra dimension for a better-looking picture in a heartbeat.
Check out our full review of Zalman's 3D display after the jump!
It’s a shame to test an LCD monitor that’s able to create sharp whites and rich blacks, only to watch it struggle to display common color gradients. And it’s downright frustrating given our benchmarking process. We first test a display’s ability to produce detail in blacks and whites. And in that race, NEC’s 24WMCX finishes toward the front—a noteworthy start.
We were excited when LG’s W2452T arrived in the Lab—we had high hopes this monitor would break the streak of middle-of-the-road 24-inch displays we’ve tested lately. And it nearly did. Although the 1920x1200-res screen was able to hit the grayscale extremes on our DisplayMate tests, this functionality came at a horrible price: noticeable compression when given an increased range of grayscales to work with.
Dell’s newest 22-inch display—one remarkable enough to win attention and awards at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show—retails for $1,200 dollars. Go figure, then, that it’s called the Dell Crystal, although the Dell Diamond works too. Because when you buy this display, you’re buying more marketing hype than functionality. You’re also paying nearly four-times the price of Dell’s $350 SP2208WFP, a carbon-copy of the Crystal’s functionality minus a hunk of Plexiglas slapped over the front.
Dell’s jumbo entry in its Ultrasharp line of monitors, the 3008WFP, performs exactly as the company’s marketing materials promise. This monitor truly “produces darker blacks.” In fact, we think Dell’s underselling the device, because the 3008WFP takes the dark spectrum and covers it with the digital equivalent of a dark sheet. We cranked the device to its maximum brightness and still found ourselves unable to see distinctions at the low end of Display Mate’s grayscales.
ViewSonic’s VLED221wm 22-inch LCD is the first LED-backlit display to grace our Lab, and we were anxious to put the technology to the test. LCD monitors typically sport cold cathode fluorescent backlighting, which can be less than uniform, and because it’s always on in the background, it can impair a screen’s ability to produce a true black. With LEDs, the screen is backlit with a grid of lights that can be turned on and off as needed. Sure enough, the 1680x1050 VLED221wm was capable of a black that exceeded that of any other LCD we’ve tested—but the result was actually overkill.
It’s easy to be seduced by the sheer size of a 24-inch LCD screen—any display that big just looks like it means business. And there was a time when large LCD panels were almost exclusively high-performance parts. That’s no longer the case. As the 24-inch LCDs reviewed here demonstrate, large screens are just as varied and prone to flaws as their smaller counterparts.