Articles: Monitors

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First Impressions

Alas, my very first impressions from the Acer GD245HQ proved to be rather unpleasant. The monitor has a serious problem with sharpness. Take a look at the photo:

The fonts look normal on the right, but the exceedingly high sharpness adds a bright outline to the letters on the left. Moreover, this picture is not a combination of two photos. It is one photo. The separating line between the normal and “highlighted” parts of the image goes from top to bottom exactly along the middle of the screen.

After some experimenting the following solution was found: you can eliminate that effect by disabling response time compensation (the OD option) in the monitor's service menu.

To enter the service menu you must turn the monitor off and then turn it back on while keeping the left button pressed.

Alas, this is hardly a good solution. The response time compensation is turned off completely, so the monitor becomes an ordinary 5ms model even in 3D mode, which is too slow to keep up with the 3D glasses. In other words, you have to turn the response time compensation back on to play in stereoscopic mode. Besides, when the OD option is disabled, the monitor automatically enables dynamic contrast after being turned on.

There is a way to eliminate the excessive sharpness without turning off the response time compensation option. You go into the service menu, turn the OD option off, choose Reset, then enable OD again, and press Reset. This keeps response time compensation enabled and eliminates the excessive sharpness but only until the monitor is reset (i.e. until the next time you turn it off and on). That's not handy, either.

These somewhat crazy relationships between different settings make it clear that the monitor’s firmware is written in a sloppy manner and is full of various bugs. The response time compensation should not be related to the display of a static image or to dynamic contrast, but it is related to both, and in a poor way, in the Acer GD245HQ.

I checked out two different samples of the monitor manufactured half a year apart: one in the spring of 2010 and another at the end of the summer. There was no difference. Both had the above-described defect. Acer seems to be in no hurry to correct such an unpleasant problem.

Summing this up, I should say that if you care about the monitor’s ability to display text normally and deliver good image quality in 2D applications, you should be very careful and check the GD245HQ out in this respect before purchasing it.

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