Samsung SyncMaster 2253LW 21.6" LCD

Written by Tim Smalley

June 4, 2008 | 02:01

Tags: #8-bit #build #colour #evaluation #film #image #panel #quality #review #screen #syncmaster #technology #tn

Companies: #samsung #test

Subjective image quality

First, allow us to dismiss both MagicBright3 and MagicColor with the disdain they richly deserve. The former is an incredibly blunt instrument.

When displaying an all-black or very nearly all-black image, it admittedly makes a decent fist of reducing backlight bleed to minimal proportions. But it also crushes the lighting to such low levels that any slivers of colour that are being rendered become extremely murky.

Making matters worse, it requires very little image data to convince the backlight to switch to maximum brightness. In practice, therefore, the backlight is rarely running at anything other than full reheat, which rather defeats the object of the exercise.

The speed with which it changes states is also pretty slow, which gives the whole process an extremely clumsy feel.

Samsung SyncMaster 2253LW 21.6 Samsung SyncMaster 2253LW 21.6
Click to enlarge

As for MagicColor, the news is little better. Granted, it does add a little punch to the sludgy default colours. But unless a wonky, oversaturated mess is your bag when it comes to colour balance, odds are you won't be terribly satisfied with MagicColor either. Cycle through the various presets are long as you like, but you'll invariably settle for the more accurate and low key default setting.

The irony in all of this is that the SyncMaster 2253LW's panel is actually very respectable when these largely pointless frills are disabled. With the backlight in static mode, the SM2253LW actually offers impressive light occlusion. The 1,000:1 static contrast ratio is decent by any standard, especially for TN+Film technology.

Samsung SyncMaster 2253LW 21.6 Samsung SyncMaster 2253LW 21.6
Click to enlarge

Likewise, the real-world viewing angles in games and movies are impressive. The dark tone colour inversion that can be so distracting in many cheaper panels is conspicuous by its near absence on Samsung’s 2253LW. The nippy pixel response also makes it a good choice for blur-sensitive gamers. OK, it's not as vivid or as punchy as a good PVA or IPS screen. But once you've adjusted to the low-key look, it's not all that unpleasant.
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