Samsung SyncMaster BX2350 review: Samsung SyncMaster BX2350

Performance
We tested the Samsung SyncMaster BX2350 through its HDMI input, connected to a Windows Vista PC, using the included HDMI-to-DVI cable. The display posted a composite score of 96 on CNET Labs' DisplayMate-based performance tests. This was virtually the same performance we saw on the Samsung PX2370, which scored 97; however, there are a few minor differences worth pointing out. The BX2350's default settings are close to optimal, and as a result, it requires less adjusting than the PX2370 before we started testing. Throughout our color tests we saw no egregious color problems on the BX2350 and only experienced minor nonlinearity in one of our color scales tests. The BX2350 scored just a hair better than the PX2370 in these tests, as its color was just a tad less saturated and more accurate. In our Dark Screen test we noticed very apparent clouding at the top and left side edges of the screen, more than we saw on the PX2370. In our Black Level test, the BX2350 only crushed very dark grays, and the monitor was able to display down to a level-two gray, which is two levels above true black. This indicates an optimal black level for the display.

Text: In text, we saw no color problems with black text on a white background. Fonts were clearly visible down to a 6.8 size.

Movies: We tested the Samsung SyncMaster BX2350 using the Blu-ray version of "Avatar." Here we saw mostly accurate color, however, the PX2370 pushes red more and as a result some details like the scars on Quaritch's arms are more easily visible than they are on the BX2350. We were able to improve that color detail on the BX2350 by decreasing the blue setting to 93. Also, dark detail such as braids in the hair of the Na'vi during a nighttime scene could be easily seen on both monitors.

Games: Because of our intimate familiarity with World of Warcraft, it remains the best tool for judging color quality and vibrancy in games. On the PX2370, we found that although the Game mode preset can oversaturate color slightly, it also brings a welcome vibrancy to the game's aesthetics; the BX2350 has more accurate color when displaying games compared with the PX2370. As a result, the BX2350 can't quite mimic the vibrancy of the PX2370 when displaying games. Still, WoW looked great running on the BX2350, with no color push or tint problems.

Viewing angle: The optimal viewing angle for a monitor is usually directly in front, about a quarter of the way down from the top of the screen. At this angle, you're viewing the colors and gamma correction as the manufacturer intended. Most monitors are not made to be viewed at any other angle. Depending on the panel type, picture quality at nonoptimal angles varies. Most monitors use TN panels, which get overly bright or overly dark in parts of the screen when viewed from nonoptimal angles. The Samsung BX2370 uses a TN panel, and when it is viewed from the sides or bottom, we perceived the screen to darken about 6 inches off from center.

The Magic Angle mode prevents the screen from darkening when viewed from certain angles. Magic Angle has five settings: Lean Back Mode 1, Lean Back Mode 2, Standing Mode, Side Mode, and Group View. Switching to each mode will improve screen brightness when viewing the monitor from that angle. For example, after switching to Lean Back Mode 2 and then sitting back in your chair to play a game, the screen doesn't darken nearly as much, and as a result, game details can still be seen while you do irreparable damage to your spine. Group View is a new mode, not included with the PX2370, and is a kind of jack of all trades mode, providing good performance from most angles, but not as good as if you were using the specific modes.

Recommended settings and use: During general use, watching movies, and playing games, we found the Custom Mode preset to be the BX2370's optimal picture setting.

As with most TN-based monitors, the Samsung SyncMaster BX2350 shouldn't be used if pinpoint accurate color reproduction is required; however, the monitor is good for watching movies, playing games, and for general use. If you do have stringent color needs, we suggest you narrow your search to IPS or PVA-based panels only. The Dell UltraSharp U2711 is a good place to start.

Power consumption: The Samsung SyncMaster BX2350 achieved good power consumption, with a Default/On power draw of 28.05 watts, compared with the PX2370's 25.01 watts in the same test. The consumption delta was lower in our Sleep/Standby test, with the PX2370 drawing 0.27 watt and the BX2350 drawing 0.2 watt. With both monitors' center points calibrated to 200 candelas per square meter (cd/M2), the PX2370 drew 19.9 watts, whereas the VG236H drew a high 24.7 watts. Based on our formula, the Samsung SyncMaster BX2350 would cost $8.51 per year to run, compared with the PX2370's $7.65 per year.

Brightness (in cd/m2)
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
Asus MS238H
223 
Samsung SyncMaster BX2350
219 
Acer S243HL
217 

Contrast ratio
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
LG Flatron E2350V
1,355:1 
Samsung PX2370
948:1 
Asus MS238H
942:1 
BenQ V2400 Eco
891:1 
Samsung SyncMaster BX2350
885:1 
Acer S243HL
238:1 

DisplayMate test
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
Samsung SyncMaster BX2350
96 

Juice box
Samsung SyncMaster BX2350 Average watts per hour
On (default luminance) 28.05
On (max luminance) 28.05
On (min luminance) 11.83
Sleep 0.2
Calibrated (200 cd/m2) 24.7
Annual power consumption cost $8.51
Score Good

Find out more about how we test LCD monitors

Service and support
Samsung backs the PX2370 with a three-year parts and labor warranty that covers the backlight. It also offers support through a 24-7 toll-free number, as well as 24- to 48-hour turnaround time for e-mail and Web chat support. The display's documentation and support software are available on Samsung's Web site.

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Quick Specifications See All

  • Display Type LED-backlit LCD monitor / TFT active matrix
  • Interface VGA (HD-15)
  • Diagonal Size 23 in
  • Image Contrast Ratio 1000:1