Polyview's new 19in widescreen display showed excellent contrast and brightness levels during DisplayMate testing, making it a suitable monitor for watching DVDs as well as viewing two documents side-by-side. The monitor has a native resolution of 1440 by 900 pixels and can be connected using either its analog or digital input ports.
It does have a few shortcomings though. Firstly, its build quality feels flimsy, at best, and its on-screen menu display (OSD) control buttons are located on the rear of the unit, and are not labelled on the front fascia. This makes the monitor quite difficult to adjust unless you've got the button locations and functions memorised.
Secondly, the monitor struggled in our colour tests, especially in tests concerning gradients. Grey colours, in particular, were slightly off and this is no doubt due to the monitor's dithering techniques. It can not display 16.7 million colours so colour combinations for gradients and shades need to be processed from other colours in its palette. Primary colours did show up without problems, as did secondary colours. Gradients showed clear stepping between colour levels, which can be detrimental to photo viewing.
As for its response rate, the V398 is rated as an 8ms panel, which in our text scrolling tests did not produce blurring, but we did notice that the letters did not stay solid as they scrolled across the screen. While watching DVDs, we did not notice any blurriness or ghosting and viewing from the sides was very good.
All up, this monitor is decent for watching movies and for productivity. We especially like the widescreen when it comes to displaying documents side-by-side. However, we think its build quality could be more solid and we wish its colour reproduction was better.
Verdict: The V398 is a decent and inexpensive widescreen display for watching movies and viewing documents. Its colour reproduction could be better, so if you do a lot of photo editing then this is not the monitor for you.
Distributor: Protac URL: www.protac.com.au