Most helpful positive review
134 of 136 people found the following review helpful
An excellent VA panel monitor
on 22 September 2013
To put this in perspective:
- there are three types of monitor panels, TN, IPS and VA. Because all panels need light from behind, black is a very problematic colour to display (well, black is not a colour, right?)
- TN panels: cheapest and you probably already have one in your home, office or laptop. They have good response times (2 - 5 ms) so are usually good for gaming, but are very bad at colour reproduction and gamma shifting and viewing angles (colours change when you look at them even from a slightly different angle)
- IPS panels: very expensive, excellent colour reproduction and viewing angles, can reproduce colours using between 6 and 10 bit. Usually all are produced by LG. The cheaper 6 bit, while still better then TN panels, are not that impressive. A bit on the slow side (response times > 8ms usually). True professional monitors will use 10 bit panels and cost about £1000 (search for Eizo).
- VA: medium to high price, usually 8 bit colour reproduction which is very good, best contrast and black levels. Eizo actually did use VA panels in one of their very expensive monitors. Until recently, they were slow. This BenQ claims to have a 4ms response time, so very fast.
I own two other monitors, a 27" IPS and a 25" TN. This allowed me to compare this one side by side in real life with all other technologies.
I also had another VA, a 24" older model Benq. I returned that one because although the image quality was absolutely incredible (as in good), I found it too slow. Since then, I kept hoping a faster VA panel would come on the market.
When this one appeared, claiming to be the fastest VA and with zero flicker, I jumped on it.
- In the box, there is a HDMI cable, finally, no more useless D-SUB cables.
- Has integrated speakers, for me this has always been important, as it allows me to have more space on my desk.
- Flicker free: must be good, but cannot say I noticed a huge improvement there, although I have very sensitive eyes.
- Thin frame, makes it look about the same size as my older 25" monitor.
- Good image quality, with good black levels.
- although I was very worried I'll find it to be slow, it is actually fast. I am not going to return this one!
- I can work on it comfortably even in direct sunlight !
The not so good:
- The speakers are only 2 x 1W. However, I knew what to expect there, and I still think all monitors should have them since the HDMI carries sound.
- Some noises can be heard on different stages and resolution changes. Very discreet, I am only mentioning them because I am very hard to please. The same applies for a lot of other monitors so not a biggy.
- Even at lowest brightness setting, it is still a bit brighter than my other monitors, so not recommended to work on a dark room, however, no reason to work in a dark room anyway.
All in all, I would recommend this monitor. Having a true 8 bit panel, VA and flicker free, and speedy enough, must be impressive. You need to install the driver from the disc, and play with calibration and ClearType settings in Windows (Win 7 in my case) to get the best image.
I work as a web developer, programming and I am always looking for ways to keep my eyes strain-free. I cannot say I see a huge difference, but I do like it so far. If you find a better monitor for your eyes, let me know please!