The case of this monitor is well-designed, with the framing painted light-beige with a tincture of gold like anodized aluminum, but that’s of course plastic. The buttons are metallic, joined in twos (save for the power button – it is single, but elongated to maintain the uniformity of style).
The framing around the screen is wide, but the monitor doesn’t look clumsy on the desk. The base is small, low-profile, made of black plastic and weighted with a steel plate in the sole. Only the screen tilt is adjustable.
CTX S730 is equipped with an analog input only and the signal cable is not removable: there is no D-Sub input in the case.
I can’t omit the fact that CTX offers unique warranty service. You can exchange the monitor in 101 days since the purchase day if there appeared just a single bad pixel in the matrix. After this term, the monitor can be exchanged according to the warranty (it lasts 36 months now) only if it has as many as 7 dead pixels.
The menu resembles other monitors from CTX, starting from classic CRT models. It is of average user-friendliness and beauty. You can quick-access auto-adjustment (by double-pressing the menu button) as well as brightness and contrast controls.
You are offered three variants of color temperature: user-defined (by default, it means 6250K white and 9620K gray), “6500K” (corresponds to 5670K white and 7800K gray; I tested the monitor with this setting), and “9300” (this setting produces 7040K white and 10,060 gray).
The viewing angles are good enough. The white color is into yellowish at an angle of 45° already, but the vertical angles are larger than in monitors on now-fashionable 16msec TN+Film matrixes (CTX claims this monitor to have such a matrix, too, but this is not so, as we will see shortly). When you look at the screen from above, there is a dark stripe across the screen, and the top becomes dark when the screen is viewed from below. You may want to sit behind this monitor so that your eyes were at a level with the upper edge of the screen, while the screen itself is strictly or nearly vertical. This way, you won’t notice the deficiencies of the viewing angles.
Auto-adjustment takes about 5 seconds, and I don’t have any complaints about the quality of the final result it provides.
By default, both brightness and contrast controls are on their maximums. To achieve a screen brightness of 100nit, I dropped the brightness control to 50% and the contrast to 80%.
The color curves don’t look as neat as they were with the two monitors we have just discussed. The monitor is non-linear at reproducing light tones. What’s harder to see, it is also bad at reproducing the darkest tones. Moreover, the blue color is too intensive in the middle of the range, and too weak on the ends (in light and dark tones).
It’s all practically the same at 100nit screen brightness.
Although the specified response time is 16msec, my measurements showed 39msec! This monitor resembles the above-described Acer AL1713 rather than modern “fast” matrixes in this parameter.
The contrast ratio is not that bad. Yes, the monitor is no record-breaker, but the level of black never goes above 0.73nit, providing a contrast ratio of 200:1…300:1. That’s average, considering the relatively low maximum level of white.
Unfortunately, the retail price of CTX S730 is not that low: it costs $10-20 more than Acer AL1721 that I have just discussed above. Meanwhile, the Acer solution is better in all parameters: response time, color reproduction setup, level of black, functionality (digital input + integrated speakers). While this situation remains, I can’t honestly recommend you the CTX S730. If it cost just a little lower, it would be a good monitor for home or office use and for people who are not very fastidious about the matrix speed and the color reproduction setup.