Acer AL2616WD

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Acer AL2616WD
  • Acer AL2616WD
  • Acer AL2616WD
  • Acer AL2616WD

Pros

  • Sharp pictures, minimal noise, fast response time, lots of real-estate

Cons

  • Some minor over-saturation of reds and yellows, slight contrast issues

Bottom Line

The image quality of the Acer AL2616WD is quite close to being flawless and considering the size and price this is a bargain purchase for anyone looking to take their PC display to the next level.

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With the increasing proliferation of PCs as full featured entertainment devices, the demand for larger, widescreen displays continues to grow. Fitting in nicely between the standard 24in and 27in models is Acer's AL2616WD which measures in at the somewhat bizarre size of 25.5in. It provides great image quality, a massive viewing area and some decent basic calibration options without costing the earth, making it a wonderful option for those looking for something a little larger.

The unit's specifications are quite impressive. Boasting a 500cd/m2 brightness rating, a 1700:1 contrast ratio and a 5ms response time, it can handle basically anything you throw at it. The 1920x1200 resolution also ensures you can fit a huge amount of windows on the display at one time.

During our imaging tests it impressed us. First we ran DisplayMate, which is a piece of software designed to check for flaws on a fundamental level. In the sharpness tests, the AL2616WD was flawless, crafting a crisp, clear picture with no noticeable aliasing or aberrations. The contrast charts were also handled nicely. There was a little loss of definition at the extreme light and dark ends of the intensity ramps, but it was better than we've seen on many display panels.

That isn't to say everything was flawless. In the colour tests, reds and to a lesser extent yellows were noticeably oversaturated. We tried to correct this using the calibration options, but they didn't help. We also spotted some very minor flickering in some of the moire patterns, but it wasn't a problem in any sort of real world scenario.

Meanwhile in our movie and gaming tests, the 5ms response time really had an impact. There was almost no ghosting to speak of even in extremely fast scenes. The crispness we saw in earlier tests also showed through here. Contrast, an area large monitors often come up a little lacking, was well handled. There could have been a little more definition in dark areas, but in general it satisfied our expectations.

The viewing angles are rated at 178 degrees both vertically and horizontally, and we had no issues with multiple people watching the display from a variety of angles. Black levels were also quite good, rounding out a strong performance from this unit.

Aesthetically the AL2616WD is fairly plain, with a matte black bezel and matching stand. It does have a fairly hefty footprint, so keep in mind you'll need a fair bit of space to accommodate such a monstrous panel. It comes packing both DVI and D-Sub connections, although DVI offers by far the best image quality.

A small string of buttons runs along the front, giving access to the on-screen display. This contains some basic calibration options such as brightness, contrast and colour, however, these aren't as robust as those found on some competing manufacturers' products such as Samsung.

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