Philips Brilliance 225B review: Philips Brilliance 225B

Typical Price: $379.00
3.5 stars

CNET Editors' Rating

The Good Low power consumption. Proximity detections dim screen when the user is away. Height adjustment.

The Bad Blacks aren't good, but this is typical of TN screens. Gaming is blurrier than the norm.

The Bottom Line While its display quality is no greater or less than the norm, Philips' Brilliance 225B does one thing very well: saves power. Just don't use it for gaming.

7.5 Overall

Update: Due to additional gaming tests, the score for the Brilliance 225B has been revised since initial publication.

In an age of glossy thin monitors, Philip's austere 22-inch, matte black screen harkens to the past, and is aimed purely at business.

That's not to say it's without charm — the matte screen means reduced glare and reflections, and the monitor's hero feature — the ability to dim the screen when the user walks away — is genuinely useful.

Philips calls it "PowerSensor", and it works through two infrared sensors mounted to the bottom of the panel. Once it detects no presence within a user-definable distance, the screen is dimmed; when a person returns, it resumes the usual brightness. Sadly, the level of dimming isn't user definable, nor can you simply tell the monitor to switch itself off, but any power saving is a bonus.


Two IR sensors at the bottom of the screen detect if a user is sitting in front or not, and dims the screen if no one is there. There is a blue power light directly under the Philips logo — thankfully, you can lower the brightness or turn it off altogether in the OSD. (Credit: Craig Simms/CBS Interactive)

Specs at a glance

Size 22 inches
Resolution 1680x1050
Aspect Ratio 16:10
Pixel pitch 0.282
Panel technology TN
Viewing angles
(10:1 contrast)
H: 170°
V: 160°
Response time 5ms G2G
Max vertical refresh 75Hz
Connections DVI, VGA, 3.5mm line in, headphone jack, 1x USB
Accessories DVI, VGA, 3.5mm audio, power cables; HDMI > DVI adapter

3D view

Stand and ergonomics

Philips offers greater adjustability than is usually given in this class of monitor, with the stand allowing height and swivel adjustments above the usual tilt. At its bottom height, the actual screen panel is 135mm from the ground, and can extend to 205mm.

Philips Brilliance 225B height adjustability

The 225B has quite a decent height adjustment, although the action is not smooth, making it hard to be precise. (Credit: Craig Simms/CBS Interactive)

Cable management is handled by a bifurcated, curved and nooked piece of plastic at the back of the neck. While it looks deceptively unaccommodating, it happily took all the cables we could feasibly plug into the 225B at once.

Philips Brilliance 225B cable management

Cable management at the back of the neck. (Credit: Craig Simms/CBS Interactive)


Philips Brilliance 225B inputs

3.5mm audio in, power, DVI and VGA. (Credit: Craig Simms/CBS Interactive)

Philips Brilliance 225B USB

A single USB port is offered on the left-hand side. Most competitors either offer four, or none. A headphone jack can be found on the underside of the monitor. (Credit: Craig Simms/CBS Interactive)


A single 3.5mm audio line-in jack is provided, along with dual 1.5W speakers. As is typical of monitor speakers, performance is terrible, strangely lacking in clarity at the high end yet still hissy, with very little punch and lacking in bass.

Buttons and on-screen display (OSD)

The 225B's buttons are front mounted and have dual functions — the bottom icons representing what function will be accessed if they are pushed first, the top icons representing their functions in the OSD.

Philips Brilliance 225B buttons

The 225B has front-mounted, easy-to-use buttons. (Credit: Craig Simms/CBS Interactive)

The only exclusion is the power button on the right, and the "SmartImage" button on the left, which cycles through Philips' image presets, labelled "Economy", "Entertainment", "Image viewing" and "Office work", each one adjusting brightness, contrast and sharpness. As is usual with image presets, they're awful, and we recommend leaving them off.

Philips Brilliance 225B OSD

Philips' on-screen display is clean and easy to navigate. (Credit: Craig Simms/CBS Interactive)

Scaling options are limited to full screen ("widescreen") and 4:3.

Performance LCD tests
After calibrating to a target brightness of 140cd/m² with an X-Rite i1Display 2, Eye-One Match 3 and tweaking with HCFR, the Philips was run through the LCD tests.

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