Articles: Monitors

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We continue testing 20” and 21” monitors. If you missed the first part of our test session, where we discussed monitors from Acer, NEC and BenQ, please feel free to check out our article called Closer Look at 20" and 21" LCD Monitor Features. Part II.

And now welcome our today’s testing participants!

Samsung SyncMaster 203B

We are again descending from the sky to the earth as after one of the most expensive 21” monitors I’m now going to talk about recently released entry-level 20” models on TN+Film matrixes. The SyncMaster 203B is an immediate market opponent to the Acer AL2017 (see it tested at the beginning of this review). Both have the reduced resolution of 1400x1050 pixels and differ but very little in price (what’s curious, the Samsung is cheaper at $400-410 while the Acer costs $20 more). Samsung presents the reduced resolution as an advantage, saying that the larger pixel size makes text more readable.

The viewing angles in the official specification are measured by a contrast drop to 5:1.

The 203B looks like a very typical monitor from Samsung. This design has already become a standard for that manufacturer. It doesn’t try to impress you with its exterior, but it looks neat and appropriate on a home desk as well as in office.

The pole of the monitor’s stand is rather large because not only the tilt but also the height of the screen can be adjusted, the latter within a range of 10 to 18 centimeters from the desk surface. The portrait screen orientation is also available, which is quite a surprise for a product from that price category. The screen can also be turned around its vertical axis – the rotation circle is in the base of the stand.

The stand can be fixed with a wire pin. To be able to adjust the height, you need to take the pin out. To block it, you lower the screen into the bottommost position and put the pin back again. This is less convenient than a lock button because the pin is likely to get lost (but you can make your own lock out of an ordinary paperclip.

The monitor has analog and digital (DVI-D) inputs, and an integrated power adapter.

I hold the design of the control buttons on Samsung’s new monitors as an example for many other manufacturers (particularly, for BenQ). There’s nothing superfluous here, no senseless decorations and no designer’s play at the expense of ergonomics. It’s all simple and elegant and very convenient: a row of round cute buttons on the front panel with easily readable and clear labels. A blue LED is built into the Power button. I guess no user is going to have any difficulties setting this monitor up.

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