Gaming laptops are traditionally full of compromises.
Samsung Series 8 (S27A850T) business LCD monitor
This 27in monitor is detailed, has wide viewing angles and a great anti-glare coating
- Good detail at native resolution
- Excellent viewing angles
- High quality AG coating
- Wobbly pivot hinge
- No analog audio input
Samsung’s top business monitor is expensive, but it has excellent image quality in almost all aspects. It’s also generally well made and has a wide range of connectors.
Price$ 1,099.00 (AUD)
The Samsung Series 8 (S27A850T) is a 27in LED edge-lit LCD monitor using Samsung’s proprietary PLS panel tech. This monitor may be expensive at $1099, but its image quality is impressive. Power users and design professionals — the monitor’s target market — are well catered for with plenty of digital connectors and a wide range of ergonomic adjustments.
Samsung Series 8 (S27A850T): Design and features
The Samsung Series 8 doesn’t have any hidden surprises in its design. The monitor’s sharp corners and edges are utilitarian, the bezel is reasonably thin but its plastic is a generic businesslike grey, and the telescoping stand and base don’t have any unnecessary flair. This is a pleasant surprise coming from the company behind the flashy Series 8 and Series 9 LED TVs, and we think the Series 8 monitor would look good in an office setting.
All the Series 8’s buttons are arranged under the Samsung logo, at the centre of the screen’s bottom bezel. They’re labelled but are unobtrusive, and give easy access to the reasonably comprehensive on-screen display. The on-screen menu itself is confined to the absolute bottom of the screen by default, and is quite small. We would have liked to see it larger and more readable: with 27 inches of screen space there’s more than enough room for menu option descriptions, for example.
The back panel of the Samsung Series 8 has a small range of digital video connectors and accessory ports. Our test model, marked SyncMaster SA850T, had a single DisplayPort, single DVI-D and single HDMI port. Each of these connectors are able to display the maximum 2560x1440pixel resolution of the monitor successfully. There’s also a DC power connector, and a nifty dock for the Series 8’s DC power brick. A USB 2.0 input jack lets the monitor function as a four port USB 2.0 hub.
There’s also a 3.5mm audio jack, marked with a headphone symbol, but there’s no analog audio input. It only functions when there’s an audio input from the HDMI port — we plugged a Sony BDP-S580 Blu-ray player in and watched a movie with audio from the headphone jack. You could plug a set of speakers into the Series 8 for HDMI audio playback.
The stand of the Series 8 (S27A850T) is reassuringly solid. The base is large, measuring 355mm wide and 255mm deep — it’s not large enough to take up too much desk space, but there’s more than enough room to keep your iPhone, wallet and keys during the work day. The front section of the base is also deep enough to accommodate a standard-size computer keyboard — sure to please the neat freaks amongst us.
The stand of the Samsung Series 8 monitor is able to telescope from a minimum monitor height of 442.5mm (from the base to the top of the top bezel) to approximately 600mm. This range of movement is excellent, and the monitor can be adjusted to suit a wide range of seating heights. There’s a cable-tidy clip on the back of the stand.
There’s a wide range of movement on all axes — tilting, swivelling and pivoting. The straight-on image of the monitor shows the extra movement past perfectly-level landscape orientation.
The screen also tilts up with an excellent range of motion although downward tilting is minimal. It swivels against the base over a very wide range of motion — an overall arc of around 90 degrees from left to right. It can also pivot from landscape to portrait mode in an anticlockwise direction, with a little extra movement possible past perfectly-level portrait and landscape orientations.
We like the comprehensive adjustment options available — they’re as good as any monitor on the market today that we know of. There is a bit of ‘wobble’ in the stand, though; swivel it or tilt it and the monitor shakes a little with the momentum of the movement. There’s no shaking unless the monitor has just been tilted or swiveled, so it’s solid and stationary at most times.
Next page: Performance, image quality, and conclusion
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