Need to buy a gift for somebody who loves technology but you can’t afford the big ticket items?
BenQ Australia FP241W
- Excellent picture quality, wide array or connections including HDMI, 1080p support.
- No speakers, a little expensive
The BenQ FP241W is an excellent monitor with brilliant image quality and a wide range of connection options that gamers and graphic designers alike will adore.
Price$ 1,299.00 (AUD)
The BenQ FP241W is a 24in 16:10 widescreen LCD monitor with a native resolution of 1920x1200 and support for video resolutions up to 1080p. It has a simple and effective design, a wide range of connection options (including HDMI) and most importantly, excellent image quality.
The BenQ comes ready to use out of the box so you won't have to spend any time attaching the base. At 567mm x 248mm x 474.2mm this unit is smaller than the ASUS PW201 but this is solely due to its lack of speakers. The design is fairly simplistic, with a thin 150mm black bezel around the display and function buttons on the right hand side. The D-Sub, DVI-D, S-Video, Composite, Component and HDMI connections are situated at the bottom of the unit making them a little fiddly to use.
This was an interesting monitor to test due to the many video signals and connection types it supports. Normally, when we test a monitor, we connect to it a PC at its native resolution and run DisplayMate Video Edition and a handful of PC games to test performance. For this monitor we decided to incorporate some of our TV testing methodology into the process due to the HDMI connection and 1080p support. Overall, we found the performance of the monitor to be excellent and the 6ms response rate (gray to gray) compared well to other gaming monitors, with no visual aberrations.
We connected the monitor to a PC running at 1920x1200 via HDMI, D-Sub and DVI and ran DisplayMate Video Edition with each connection. Across all the connections we found no problems whatsoever. The colours were rich, blacks were excellent and there was no evidence of any backlight bleeding. The grayscale tests revealed no discolourations or stepping with a subtle blend along the gray scale.
We also played F.E.A.R. and Unreal Tournament 2003 to check for ghosting; a tell-tale sign of a mediocre response rate. Both games ran smoothly with no ghosting whatsoever. Motion seemed natural and when coupled with the superb clarity and the sheer size of the monitor, we highly recommend this unit for gaming.
To test the 1080p support, we connected the monitor via HDMI to a PC running a Sapphire Radeon X1600 Pro graphics card set to output at 1080p. We then ran high definition WMV, Quicktime and DivX files, all of which looked brilliant.
For our final tests, we connected the Xbox 360 gaming console to the monitor via component at 720p and 1080i resolutions. We played Marvel Ultimate Alliance, albeit without sound, and found the clarity and overall visual quality to be exceptional. We also played Saints Row to check how well the monitor would handle the deep oranges and reds of a Stilwater sunset (the fictional city the game is set in) and found the colours were reproduced just as well as on most LCD televisions we have seen. With results similar to our PC gaming tests, the high degree of motion in Saints Row also showed no ghosting. We also played some DVDs via the Xbox 360 at 576p and had no problems there either.
The BenQ FP241W is a great all-round monitor. It will easily work well with gaming but has the versatility to adapt to any video signal you can pump into it. The only complaints we have is the exclusion of a speaker system and the price tag which, while consistent with its competitors, is still quite high.
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