This is the next installment of our series of reviews dedicated to LCD monitors with a screen diagonal of 17 inches. This time around we’ve got eleven models from several manufacturers. Two brands – Philips and ViewSonic – make their debut in our tests today.
The recent changes in the market of 17” LCD monitors can be characterized with two observations. First, LCD monitors are becoming ever cheaper, so their average retail price is closely approaching $400 while junior models from major manufacturers can be had for $370-380. This has led to a sharp distinction between near-$400 device as product categories differ by as little as $15-20. For example, basic models are coming out for $380, but a more serious product can be bought for $400, and monitors with a digital input – not so long ago a DVI connector was a prerogative of monitors with a price of half a thousand bucks – cost from $415-420 and up today.
Second, many manufacturers combined their price cut announcements with an introduction of monitors on 12ms matrixes. And new models with a specified response time of 12 milliseconds are included into this review, too.
LG Flatron L1730S (L1730SSQT)
In its new L1730 series LG successfully crossed the outward solidity of the L1710 line (which looked too clumsy and “sloppy” in comparison to the competing models) with the unusual smooth lines of the L1720B which had been the company’s visiting card in the market of 17” LCD monitors, but not very suitable for people who prefer the classic design. The L1730S has got rid of the main disadvantage of the L1710 series – I mean the bulky and clumsy base that used to take much space and spoil the monitor’s appearance without offering any conveniences instead (no height control, no portrait mode). The case has become nobler, too, as the front panel is now flat, without a recessed bezel around the matrix, while the simple round buttons of the 1710 series have moved to the bottom edge of the case.
Still, this junior model lacks functionality as the base only allows adjusting the tilt of the screen (running a little ahead, I should say that the functionality of the senior models is better).
The monitor is equipped with an analog input only; the power adapter is integrated into the case. The connectors can be hidden under a silvery cover, and the cables – under a silvery decorative bracket at the back of the monitor’s stand.