BenQ EW2420 review: BenQ EW2420

To test refresh rate, we used DisplayMate's motion graphics tests and watched a bunch of graphics fly around the screen, looking for evidence of streaking. Compared with the Samsung PX2370, the EW2420 showed more visible levels of streaking. Given that the EW2420 houses an AMVA panel and not a faster TN like the PX2370, the results were not surprising.

Photos: The BenQ EW2420 delivered photos with a noticeable green tint, especially compared with the more accurate and natural-looking faces we saw on the PX2370. Using the sRGB preset or bringing the green down to the mid-70s improved things.

Viewing angle: The optimal monitor viewing position is usually directly in front, about a quarter of the screen's distance down from the top. At this angle, you're viewing the colors as the manufacturer intended them. Most monitors are not made to be viewed at any other angle. Depending on the panel type, picture quality at non-optimal angles varies. Most monitors use TN panels, which get overly bright or overly dark in parts of the screen when they are not viewed from optimal angles. Again, the EW2420 uses an AMVA panel that purports to provide a wider viewing angle than typical TN panels.

While a TN panel would show evidence of color shifting viewed from about 6 inches off from center, we saw no color shift evidence on the EW2420 until our viewing angle was about 10 inches off from center. However, the picture quality from this angle doesn't remain as high as it would on an IPS-panel monitor seen from the same angle. The biggest problem we noticed was that from such a wide angle, reflections in the screen became much more visible.

Recommended settings and use: When playing games we found the sRGB preset was best. What you lose in vibrancy with this preset you definitely make up in smooth, clean graphics.

With movies, we saw a low black level, but we noticed a green push, especially when compared directly with the PX2370. It's not overt and many casual users will likely not notice it, but for the most natural look, we'd recommend going with the Standard preset over the Movie preset and using the following settings:

Red: 86
Green: 75
Blue: 85

For general, all-around use, we would recommend the sRGB preset.

Power consumption: The BenQ EW2420 achieved good power consumption, with a Default/On power draw of 32.1 watts, compared with the Samsung PX2370's 25.01 watts in the same test. In our Sleep/Standby test, the EW2420 drew 0.58 watts and the PX2370 pulled a lower 0.27 watts. Based on our formula, the EW2420 would cost $9.98 per year to run, compared with the PX2370's lower $7.65 per year.

Brightness in cd/m2
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
Brightness  

Contrast ratio
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
BenQ EW2420
4,862:1 
HP 2310e
1,110:1 
Dell ST2420L
1,061:1 
Samsung PX2370
948:1 
AOC e2243Fw
946:1 

DisplayMate performance tests
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
HP 2310e
93 
BenQ EW2420
90 

Juice box
BenQ EW2420 Average watts per hour
On (default luminance) 32.1
On (max luminance) 32.1
On (min luminance) 15.6
Sleep 0.58
Calibrated (200 cd/m2) 29.1
Annual power consumption cost $9.98
Score Fair

Find out more about how we test LCD monitors.

Service and support
BenQ backs the EW2420 with a standard three-year parts and labor warranty that also includes support for the backlight. As long as you're under warranty, BenQ provides free phone support weekdays from 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. PT. Currently, the monitor's user manual, drivers, and additional software are not available on BenQ's Web site.

Conclusions
At a price of about $240, it's difficult to fault the BenQ EW2420. Any imperfection that crops up could just be excused with, "But, hey, at least it's cheap!" While $240 is indeed a great price, that only goes so far. Fortunately, with the EW2420, that's far enough, given its features. With two HDMI ports, built-in speakers, and multiple USB ports, not to mention the standard VGA and DVI, you definitely get something for your money. While the LED backlight-AMVA panel combo didn't deliver the kind of performance we were hoping for, we did see wider viewing angles than TN panels deliver and much lower black levels than we've seen on either TN- or IP-based panels. Unfortunately, movie performance was hampered by a green push, but the monitor performed well for general tasks. If you're looking for a top performer, this isn't it; however, for a general-task display with a surprising number of useful features and a low price, you'll have a hard time finding a better bargain than the BenQ EW2420.

What you'll pay

    Pricing is currently unavailable.

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