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Au revoir CRT

For quite some time now, I've been looking for a display to replace my 22" CRT. Because one of the primary uses for my PC is gaming, I've been dissatisfied with LCDs due to their slow pixel response. I recently purchased the ViewSonic VX2025wm due to its purported fast (8ms) response time and large display size. I was a bit put off by the widescreen (16:10) aspect, at first. But, given the fact that there are few standard (4:3) aspect 20" LCDs with response times as low as 8ms, I decided to take the plunge. I'm happy to say that I am very satisfied with the VX2025wm.

Features: The display offers a bright screen with crisp text display. The widescreen aspect takes some getting used to, but I acclimated after about 30 minutes of use. If you've used ViewSonic monitors before, you'll feel right at home with the simple 4-button control schema. Press (1) to activate the menu, the up or down arrows to select an option, and (2) to confirm. The display options are fairly standard: image adjustment, color temperature, brightness/contrast and display setup. Both DVI and VGA inputs are available. ViewSonic also included a nice cable-management feature at the rear of the monitor which essentially keeps your cables out of sight.

Performance: The display is connected to my primary PC. I subjectively tested the performance of the display with a number of first-person shooters like Battlefield 2, Quake 4, Half-Life 2 and Unreal Tournament 2004. None of these exhibited any ghosting or smearing. Tearing was minimal to non-existent. Less-fast paced games like Battle for Middle Earth II and World of Warcraft performed admirably as well. DVDs also displayed well, with no tearing or ghosting apparent in my test material (Revenge of the Sith and Return of the King). As noted above, text is very crisp for productivity or Internet applications. Some may find that the text is too small at the default font size - this can be adjusted within Windows to accomodate for the higher-resolution display (it didn't bother me, however).

The display does have a few shortcomings, most of which aren't a big deal to me, personally. First, the monitor does not support HDCP. While this isn't a big deal now, it's something to keep in mind if you will be migrating to Windows Vista next year. Windows Vista will require video cards and monitors to pass an HDCP token when viewing protected content (e.g. HD video). If you don't care about watching movies on your PC, then this won't be a big deal. The second shortcoming is the lack of height adjustment on the stand. The display height is just about perfect for me. And, I plan to purchase an adjustable arm for the display. But, some users like more flexibility in the display height, so it's something to keep in mind. Finally, the monitor does include integrated speakers hidden under the display. I didn't bother hooking them up, as my Klipsch Promedia 2.1 external speakers are more than capable of producing quality sound. Personally, I would have preferred that ViewSonic omit the speakers and offer the monitor at an even lower price.

Minor quibbles aside, this is an excellent display for both gaming and general use. And, it's nice to free up some valuable desk space. Highly recommended.

Pros:

  • Bright, crisp text
  • Fast pixel response
  • No dead or stuck pixels
  • Simple, intuitive controls
  • Clean design, built-in cable management
  • Excellent price and value

Cons:
  • No HDCP support (not an issue until Windows Vista hits the market)
  • No height adjustment in stand
  • Speakers are an afterthought

Comments

Update:

Tom's Hardware recently did a round-up of 20" widescreen monitors, including the VX2025wm. In short, they really liked the ViewSonic. Makes me feel even better about the purchase!

Read it here.

Posted by: Deinonych [TypeKey Profile Page] at July 7, 2006 11:05 PM

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