Articles: Monitors

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The gamma curves on the SyncMaster 173P+ look well, except that the monitor does not distinguish between the darkest tones of blue (the blue curve just coincides with the X axis there). Other than that, I have no complaints whatever.

It’s worse with the senior model. The gamma compensation value is too low, so the onscreen image seems whitish and washed-out at the default settings. Take note that the 193P+ offers you the option to adjust the gamma compensation value. The monitor’s color reproduction is much closer to the ideal if you set it at +0.3 - +0.5.

Both monitors reproduce smooth color gradients in the same manner: everything looks fine at the default settings, but when the contrast or brightness (which is obviously controlled through the matrix in these monitors) is reduced, barely visible cross stripes appear on the gradients.

The color temperature of the 173P+ is set up acceptably well. There is no big difference between the temperatures of different levels of gray.

The color temperature setup of the 193P+ is somewhat worse: the difference between the min and max temperatures (at the same settings in the monitor’s menu) may amount to 2000K, which is rather too much.

Both monitors have about the same maximum brightness (the senior model is a little brighter, but the difference is negligible) and contrast. The latter seems good if compared with TN+Film monitors for which the typical level of black is about 0.7-0.9cd/sq.m, but as you know from our previous reviews, Samsung’s PVA matrixes can show much better numbers. On the other hand, the contrast ratio of the SyncMaster 193P, the predecessor of these monitors, was not very high and was much lower than that of the SyncMaster 910T and the 920T. I guess controlling the brightness through the matrix rather than through the backlight lamps is the reason for that (unlike the 193 model, the 910 and 920 adjust their brightness through the lamps).

Returning to the main topic of this review, i.e. to response time compensation, the SyncMaster 173P+ and 193+ leave an ambiguous impression. On one hand, these monitors are considerably faster than their predecessors, but on the other hand, they are still not fast enough. Their response time on the darkest colors is still high. And as for the design and the static-image-related characteristics (color reproduction, brightness and contrast, viewing angles, etc), these models have not improved in the slightest. RTC is the only point of difference from their predecessors, but RTC does not have any effect on the static image.

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