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The $229 LED-based AOC e2237Fwh performs decently and has a striking and unique aesthetic style. The monitor has built-in speakers, a robust On Screen Display, and, unlike the similarly designed Asus MS238H, the AOC includes both HDMI and DVI support. However, the panel is never at a full 90 degrees, giving the display a constant non-optimal viewing angle, which adversely affects performance. If a low-priced, decent-performing monitor with some aesthetic panache is what you're looking for, the AOC e2237wh will fit that requirement quite well.
Design and Features
The 22-inch AOC e2237Fwh has a black bezel that contrasts nicely with its white back. At the center bottom of the bezel is a blue, glowing power button that also doubles as the On Screen Display (OSD) array menu button. Below the bezel is a blue LED "desk light" that stretches horizontally across the middle of the monitor, illuminating the desktop space below it. The entire chassis is enclosed in a transparent plastic casing. The casing extends downward, past the bottom of the bezel until it reaches the desktop.
Its unique footstand keeps the e2237Fwh constantly tilted back 5 or 15 degrees, so it is never at a perfect 90 degree angle. The stand keeps the monitor stabilized when knocked from the sides; however, when it encounters a strong enough force from the front, it will topple over quite easily. The bezel is 1.2 inches wide on the sides and the panel is a short 0.7 inch deep at its shallowest and about 1.75 inches at its deepest depth. The monitor does not have height, pivot, or swivel adjustment options.
Connection options include VGA, HDMI, and DVI. These ports are located on the back of the display, on the lower right side. Unfortunately, they are embedded about an inch into the chassis and so are not as easily accessible as they are on the . To the right of the VGA input is an audio jack for the built-in speakers.
As previously mentioned, the power button doubles as the OSD menu button. Surrounding it are four touch areas, each denoted by a small blue LED dot. Each dot is a shortcut to different OSD functions, including Presets, Speaker volume, Source, and an aspect ratio switch. Pressing the power button brings up the OSD menu, which can be navigated with the four touch area dots acting as directional keys.
The OSD includes controls for contrast, brightness, gamma, and an Eco Mode that lowers the brightness automatically. The display includes seven main presets, as well as color temperature presets options such as Cool, Normal, Warm, SRGB, and User Mode. The Display also includes an ambient light sensor.
|Connectivity: HDMI, DVI, VGA|
|Ergonomic options: Up to 15-degree back tilt|
|Aspect ratio: 16:9|
|Audio: Built in Speakers|
|VESA support: Yes|
|Included video cables? VGA|
|Panel Type: TN|
|Screen film: Matte|
|Pixel-response rate: 5ms|
|Number of presets: 7|
|Picture options: Brightness, Contrast, Ambient Light Sensor|
|Color controls: RGB controls, Color Temp: Warm, Cool, sRGB|
|Gamma control: Yes|
We tested the AOC e2237Fwh through its DVI input, connected to a Windows Vista PC. The display posted a composite score of 83 on CNET Labs' DisplayMate-based performance tests, which is more than a few points below the Samsung PX2370's 97. The e2237Fwh had particular trouble in our various scales tests, which evaluate a monitor's capability to show linear intensity progression. Instead of displaying the different levels in the scales linearly, the levels on the e2237Fwh jump around a lot--not as much as on the BenQ V2420H, mind you, but much more than on the PX2370. In our Color Tracking test we noticed a slight green tint. In our Black Level test, the e2237Fwh crushed very dark grays to the point that a level eight gray--which is eight levels above true black--was the darkest color the monitor could display when sitting normally besides true black. When we leveled the panel to 90 degrees, level four gray was the lowest, which still indicates a higher-than-optimal black level. In the Dark Screen test, we actually saw less clouding than on the PX2370. The e2237Fwh had clouding at the top and bottom edges on the screen, but it was not as prolific as on the PX2370, which had more noticeable backlight bleed-through.
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; however, because of the e2237Fwh's 5-percent tilt, 6.8-sized fonts at the top of the screen looked a little bloomy.
Movies: We tested the AOC e2237Fwh using the Blu-ray version of "Avatar." Though the colors looked mostly accurate, like with many monitors, we noticed a slightly green tint. Also, while the Movie mode preset is the best for watching movies, picture detail isn't quite as sharp as on the PX2370. Overall movie playback on the e2237Fwh is very good, but its slight color inaccuracy keeps it from being great.
Games: Because of our intimate familiarity with World of Warcraft, it remains the best tool for judging color quality and vibrancy in games. We found that the Game mode preset (represented by the Xbox-like control pad icon) displayed colors that were mostly accurate, but didn't pop nearly as well as on the PX2370. The PX2370 is able to walk that fine line of having eye-popping colors without over saturating the image.
Photos: We looked at some photos in the Photo preset and noticed a green tint in faces and environments. We found that the sRGB color preset, coupled with the default/standard overall preset, provided the best photo picture quality in terms of color accuracy. Still, the PX2370 looked better overall, with even more accurate colors and clarity.
Viewing angle: The optimal viewing angle for a monitor 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 they were intended by the manufacturer. Most monitors are not made to be viewed at any other angle. Depending on its 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 viewed from non-optimal angles. The AOC e2237wh uses a TN panel, and when it's viewed from the sides, we perceived the screen darken about 6 inches off from center (a typical viewing angle limit for a TN-based monitor). Using default settings, the PX2370 had a typical viewing angle threshold; however, it includes extra features that improve viewing from specific angles.
Recommended settings and use: During general use, playing games, and when watching movies, we found the optimal preset setting for the AOC e2237Fwh was the default/standard preset, with the contrast adjusted to 43. For photo editing and games, sRGB worked best.
As with most TN-based monitors, the AOC e2237Fwh isn't meant to be used if accurate color reproduction is required; however, the monitor is good for watching movies, playing games, and 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.
|Average watts per hour|
|On (default luminance)||18.13|
|On (max luminance)||18.49|
|On (min luminance)||12.55|
|Calibrated (200 cd/m2)||15.92|
|Annual power consumption cost||$5.71|
The AOC e2237wh achieved good power consumption, with a low Default/On power draw of 19.9 watts, compared with the PX2370's 25.01 watts in the same test. The consumption delta was about twice as wide in our Sleep/Standby test, with the PX2370 pulling ahead with 0.27 watts and the AOC e2237wh drawing 0.43 watts. Based on our formula, the AOC e2237wh would cost a low $5.71 per year to run, compared with the PX2370's $7.65 per year.
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Service and support
AOC backs the e2237Fwh with a three-year parts-and-labor warranty that covers the backlight for only one year. That's two years less than other vendors, which usually offer backlight coverage for three years. E-mail and toll-free tech support are also offered.