The Viewsonic VX924 is a 19" LCD display that sports a 4ms response time. As part of Viewsonic's Extreme range of displays, it's designed for gamers, rather than image professionals or home users. How, then, does it measure up as a gamer's monitor?
19" displays are not insubstantially small. The extra screen space that it affords over a 17" display might not seem like much, but is enough for it to be noticeably bigger when used in-game - the effect is akin to a 20" CRT monitor, and we all know how huge those are.
The base is rather cool, and is hollow - ideal for sticking stuff underneath, meaning you don't lose too much desk space by plonking this on your work surface. However, the stand is a little inflexible, sporting just a forwards and backwards tilt. We'd like to see a height adjustment option on this.
The bezel is black, and its curved edges fall back onto a silver, outer bezel. The effect is quite striking, but some might say that the silver and black colour scheme is inoffensive without being amazingly stylish.
At the rear of the monitor, there are sockets for mains (the monitor has an integrated PSU, rather than relying on a chunky block underneath your desk) as well as analogue and digital outputs, as you would expect. You can easily switch between these using the OSD.
The display sports a resolution of 1280x1024. This is the same as a 17" LCD monitor, and a step down from a 20" LCD monitor which provides 1600x1200 resolution. The consequence of this is that you get no extra desktop working room from having a 19" over 17" - you just get what you have already, bigger.
Some will find that this is off-putting for general windows work, and think that things are made a little over-large. This is an understandable complaint, and some people hate 1280 on a 19" as much as some love it.
However, the resolution has one major plus-point when it comes to gaming - size vs
power needed. To run a LCD at the native resolution for best image quality, you'll need to run 1600x1200 on a 20" display - a big leap in graphics processing power for just an extra inch of screen space. The flipside of this is that with this 19" monitor, you get 2 extra inches of screen space over a 17" monitor with no increase in graphics power needed. If you can't afford to splash out on the latest graphics card, this will surely be a boon.
Also a major plus point is the way in which the ViewSonic handles scaling. Simply put, this monitor sports the best resolution scaling I've seen. I have run resolutions like 800x600 or 1024x768 on other LCD monitors, for gaming performance, and had to switch off after a while because of the atrocious image quality, as the monitor tries to map the game's 800 pixels to its 1280 pixels. This monitor scales upwards admirably, providing image quality that's almost as good as native 1280. This really gives it an edge over other gaming monitors, as many gamers won't play all their games at the same resolution every time. If there's one feature on this monitor that can be classed as outstanding
, it's this.