Articles: Monitors

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The menu is standard and identical to the menu of the previous Samsung monitor (see above).

By default, the monitor has 100% brightness and 75% contrast. Increasing the contrast setting above the default results in a loss of detail in lightest halftones. To achieve a 100nit brightness of white, the brightness and contrast settings can be reduced to 20%. Brightness is controlled by pulse-width modulation of the power of the backlight lamps at a frequency of 326Hz.

The backlight is uniform. You don’t lose dark halftones on reducing the contrast setting, but a slight banding appears in color gradients then.

At the default settings the SyncMaster 940BW’s gamma curves go closely to the theoretical ones, but the bend in the top part of the diagram is indicative of too much of contrast. If you reduce the contrast setting by 10%, the curves become almost perfect.

The color temperature dispersion is small, within 500K, in the Normal and Warm modes, but you may be somewhat disappointed if you prefer colder colors: the dispersion amounts to 2000K and more in the Cool mode.

The monitor’s color gamut doesn’t differ much from the gamuts of the other monitors. Note that it covers the sRGB space almost fully.

The specification doesn’t lie: the SyncMaster 940BW is indeed two times slower than the SyncMaster 931BW. Still, its speed is good enough for you not to have any problems due to high response time: an average of 7.7 milliseconds with a maximum of 24.1 milliseconds. Most transitions take less than 10 milliseconds to perform. However, if you want to have as fast a monitor as possible, you should pay attention to the numbers. For example, older 8ms and 12ms models without RTC could be perfectly the same in their real speed, but there is a noticeable difference between RTC-enabled models with a declared response of 2ms and 4ms.

It’s all right with the RTC error level. Although not without errors, the matrix is good as TN matrixes go. The average error is a mere 3.8% and the maximum isn’t higher than 20%. Half of all transitions are performed without errors. Samsung has done a good job on the RTC mechanism if you recall the colossal error level of their early RTC implementations (in such models as SyncMaster 960BF, for example).

The monitor’s contrast ratio and brightness are on an average level as today’s TN-based monitors go.

So, Samsung has come up with a very good monitor that features a fast matrix with low level of RTC errors. Its color setup is good, its contrast ratio is sufficient, its setup options are wide. You may only gripe about its rather too plain exterior design and narrow viewing angles typical of TN matrixes (but as I wrote at the beginning of the article, there is no choice of the matrix type among widescreen 19” monitors), but perfects things are rare in this imperfect world, after all.

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