Design and Ergonomics
Samsung’s designers had not been easy to find fault with before, but they surpassed themselves with their work on the ToC series. The exterior design of these monitors is excellent.
The key point of the ToC design is the shining-from-within plastic of the front panel. It does not actually shine although some reviewers thought it did when the Touch of Color was introduced at the expos in the spring of this year. The impression is strong, anyway. From a technical point of view, the monitor’s case has a transparent acryl panel covering the screen bezel and forming a decorative perimeter, and a second layer of toned translucent plastic underneath.
It is thanks to this translucent plastic that the effect of depth is created – although a photograph cannot convey it well enough. And this distinguishes the monitor from other models that have an acryl panel glued on top of ordinary opaque plastic.
The color of the monitor is chosen with taste, too. The plastic has a colored band along the bottom of the case that smoothly transitions into the black color of the rest of the bezel.
The color of the bottom band can be red, green or blue.
And this band indeed makes the impression of shining. But it doesn’t shine actually. It only reflects any light falling on the monitor.
The smooth outline of the ToC design resembles Samsung’s other models, particularly the SyncMaster 2032BW. The ToC is far more appealing, though. I guess it is going to be liked by people who thought the 2032BW to be too round and sleek as well as by people who are tired of standard square monitors.
The back panel is made from black plastic. The stand fits the case elegantly; the connectors are covered with a decorative cap.
Take note that the ToC monitor doesn’t have fasteners for VESA mounts. It is going to be a problem to wall-mount this monitor.
Glossy plastic looks prettier but also gets dirty and scratched easier than matte plastic. Greasy fingerprints are not very conspicuous on the front panel of the ToC monitor, yet they are more visible than on ordinary matte monitors. You will have to clean the monitor periodically with the included micro-fiber napkin. I wouldn’t recommend using any other material. If you scratch the monitor, you won’t be able to restore its appearance whereas even small scratches are going to be conspicuous on the glossy surface.
You may have noticed already that the monitor’s matrix is matte in the photographs. I didn’t process the photos – the matrix is matte indeed. If you want to have a glossy matrix, you should consider the models with the letter G at the end (e.g. SyncMaster T220G). I personally prefer matte matrixes, though. A glossy matrix produces more flares and is more difficult to keep clean.
The monitor’s stand only allows to tilt the screen backward. Tilting it forward or changing its height is not possible.
Attached to the monitor, the stand resembles the one of the above-mentioned SyncMaster 2032BW, but the method of fastening is different. Instead of a plastic cylinder that would go into a rubberized groove in the monitor’s bottom, there is now a steel plate. It is easy to attach the stand: it is just inserted into the monitor until a click. To detach the stand, you must put the monitor down and pull at the stand while holding the case with your other hand. This operation isn’t as complex as it sounds, though.
You can’t use the monitor with any other stand as the monitor has no other means of fastening one.