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Maximum PC Staff Dec 13, 2010

Gateway FHX2402L

At A Glance

DEPTH CHARGE

Extremely sharp and detailed images; good color reproduction.

INSTANT DECAF

Can't adjust height or swivel; black-level detail can be lacking.

Gateway’s FHX2402L is one of several super-slim monitors that we’ve received over the past few weeks, but it distinguished itself immediately by being the one that made us sit up in our seats and say, “Wow… that looks really good.” On paper, the 24-inch, 60Hz monitor sounds pretty standard: TFT active-matrix TN display, 1920x1080 resolution, 16:9 aspect ratio, and matte-finish screen. But seeing is indeed believing, and the FHX2402L impressed with its crisp detail and clean lines.

While its range of movement isn’t noteworthy—you can tilt the display but there is no elevation adjustment or swiveling to the left or right—the FHX2402L comes with DVI, VGA, and HDMI cables. We also liked the fingerprint-resistant mesh pattern on the back.

For folks who are sick of searching for the hidden touch-sensitive buttons embedded in a monitor’s bezel, the FHX2402L offers relief in the form of five analog buttons along the bottom-right side of the bezel.

Gateway's FHX2402L impressed us by producing crystal-clear details and sharp lines.

While the colors didn’t pop with the vibrancy that you get with a glossy screen, the FHX2402L did ace the color portions of our DisplayMate tests, displaying each shade clearly in the 256 intensity-level color ramp and giving a stellar performance in the color-purity and uniformity test.

During the still-photography portion of the testing, the FHX2402L displayed images in better quality than we’d previously seen on any display, producing even minute details cleanly.

It also did an outstanding job with the extreme grayscale and the 64-step grayscale tests, where it produced clearly defined lines and color gradation; furthermore, it excelled in the sharpness matrix, resolution matrix, and corner-resolution tests. During the horizontal-line resolution test, the FHX2402L displayed sharp, clean lines with distinguishable spaces between each line, and did better on the Moiré Pattern test than previous monitors we’ve seen, showing almost no fuzz or motion in the lines and patterns.

What didn’t it earn top marks for? For starters, the dark-screen test, which revealed some uneven splotches and the tiniest bit of light leakage on the bottom right (near the menu buttons). This was reproduced during our viewing of V for Vendetta, where the screen didn’t achieve quite the black-level detail that we like to see. It also suffered some during the gray screen-uniformity test, where it displayed slightly darker shades in the upper-right corner of the screen. However, these problems were not readily apparent while watching our test movie or while playing Batman: Arkham Asylum—where the screen continually produced precise details and textures in the characters faces and clothing and didn’t exhibit any abnormal smearing.

Overall, it was easy to ignore the FHX2402L’s few drawbacks, as it consistently produced such vivid and sharp images and detail.

THE VERDICT

Gateway FHX2402L

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