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BenQ V2420H review: BenQ V2420H

BenQ V2420H

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Eric Franklin
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Eric Franklin

Senior Managing Editor / Mobile

Eric Franklin leads the CNET Reviews editors in San Francisco as managing editor. A 20-year industry veteran, Eric began his tech journey testing computers in the CNET Labs. When not at work he can usually be found at the gym, at the movies, or at the edge of his couch with a game controller in his hands.

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At $300, it's difficult to justify buying the 24-inch V2420H. Although it performs well, overall, you can get a superior monitor, such as the Samsung PX2370, for only about $10 more. While the V2420H has some advantages over the PX370--it's one inch wider and has less backlight clouding-- these two assets can't compensate for the V2420H's lacking performance in color. For general use, the V2420H is a fine monitor; however, thanks to its better performance, the PX2370 is worth spending the extra $10.

OVR
6.2

BenQ V2420H

The Good

Overall, the BenQ V2420H performs well and has minimal backlight clouding.

The Bad

In our DisplayMate tests, the BenQ V2420H shows noticeable color scaling issues. Featurewise, the V2420H is bare bones with too high of a price when compared with its better performing competition.

The Bottom Line

The BenQ V2420H is an adequately performing monitor, but it isn't worth its high price when compared with the similarly priced, but superior performing competition.

Design and features
The 24-inch BenQ V2420H has a glossy black chassis punctuated by a light green ring surrounding the power button in the lower-right corner of the bezel. The monitor has a typical-looking circular foot stand that is 7.4-inches in diameter. The stand leaves a 2.8-inches gap from the bottom of the bezel to the desktop and provides adequate stability, as long as you don't touch it. Knocking the monitor from the side caused it to wobble very noticeably. The panel tilts back 10 degrees, but the V2420H doesn't have swivel, height, or pivot adjustments. Its bezel is 0.8-inch wide and the panel is 0.7-inch at its narrowest point and 1.2-inches at its thickest.

The BenQ V2420H has connections for VGA, HDMI, and DVI inputs. The connections are located on the back of the display, in the lower middle and are easily accessible. To the right of the VGA input is a headphone jack.

Under the lower right side of the bezel are five buttons that make up the onscreen display button array. The labels for each function are located above the buttons, on the front face of the bezel. The labels are dull white in color and are difficult to see when calibrating the monitor's settings in a dark room.

The array consists of a Menu button, a Right and Left button, an Enter button, and an Auto button that functions as an automatic calibration when using an analog connection. The Right and Left buttons also double as the preset toggle and audio volume shortcut, respectively.

At first, navigating the OSD was a bit of a challenge for us and it took us a few minutes to become accustomed using the Right and Left Buttons to navigate up and down. The V2420H's preset modes include Standard, Movie, Game, Photo, sRGB, and Eco. Each preset changes the color temperature and brightness of the display with the intent of them being appropriate to the task; for example, Eco lowers the brightness significantly to save on power. Its additional color preset options include Normal, Reddish, and Bluish color temperature options and BenQ provides you with the capability to change the monitor's RGB values individually.

Design highlights:
Connectivity: HDMI, DVI, VGA
Ergonomic options: Up to 10 degree back tilt
Resolution: 1,920x1,080 pixels
Aspect ratio: 16:9
Audio: Headphone jack
VESA support: No

Feature highlights:
Included video cables? VGA
Backlight: LED
Panel Type: TN
Screen film: Matte
Pixel-response rate: 5ms
Number of presets: 6
Overdrive: No
Picture options: Brightness, Contrast, and Sharpness
Color controls: RGB controls; Color Temperature: Normal, Reddish, and Bluish
Gamma control: Yes

Performance
We tested the BenQ V2420H through its DVI input, connected to a Windows Vista PC. On CNET Labs' DisplayMate-based performance tests, the display posts a composite score of 83, which is more than a few points below the Samsung PX2370's 97 score. Particularly, the V2420H has trouble in our various scales tests that evaluate a monitor's capability to show linear intensity progression. In our Color Tracking test, we noticed the monitor's colors have a distinct green tint. In our Black Level test, the V2420H crushes very dark grays to the point that a level four gray--which is four levels above true black--is the darkest color the monitor can display other than true black, indicating that it has a higher than optimal black level. In the Dark Screen test, the BenQ display has less clouding than we found on the Samsung. While the V2420H has clouding at the top and bottom edges on the screen, but its clouding was not as prolific as the PX2370 is, which had more noticeable backlight bleed through.

Text
On the V2420H, we didn't see any color problems when looking at black text on a white background, and fonts were clearly visible down to a 6.8 point size.

Movies
We tested the BenQ V2420H using the Blu-ray version of "Avatar." While its colors looked mostly accurate, we did notice a slight green tint on the video. While its Movie preset is the best for watching movies, but its picture detail isn't quite as sharp as it is on the PX2370. Overall, the V2420H's movie playback performance is good, but its color inaccuracy and lack of sharpness keep it from being great.

Games
Because of our intimate familiarity with World of Warcraft, it remains the best tool for us to use when judging color quality and vibrancy in games. We found that the V2420H's Game mode preset grossly over saturates colors, giving the game a particularly garish presentation. However, its sRGB mode is the most appropriate preset for games. While color in sRGB mode isn't as vibrant as it is in the Game mode, the presentation probably won't temporality blind you either. The PX2370 colors are vibrant and tend to pop.

Photos
We looked at some pictures in the Photo preset and found that the BenQ lacks sharpness and has a green tint in faces and environments. The sRGB preset provided the best photo picture quality in terms of accurate colors and clarity. 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 of it, 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 manufacturers don't make monitors for viewing from any other angle. Depending on its panel type, picture quality at nonoptimal angles varies. Most monitors use TN panels that get overly bright or overly dark in parts of the screen when viewed from nonoptimal angles. The BenQ V2420H uses a TN panel, and when we view it from the sides, we perceived the screen to darken about 6 inches off from center, which is a typical viewing angle limit for a TN-based monitor. At default settings, the PX2370 had a typical viewing angle threshold; however, it includes extra features that improve viewing from specific angles. The BenQ V2420H doesn't include these features.

Recommended settings and use
For general use and when watching movies on the BenQ V2420H, we find the Standard preset is optimal--just adjust its contrast setting to 42. For photo editing and games, the sRGB preset works best.

As with most TN-based monitors, you shouldn't use the BenQ V2420H if you need accurate color reproduction; however, the monitor is good for watching movies, playing games, and for general use. If you 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.

Juice box
BenQ V2420H Average watts per hour
On (default luminance) 23.7
On (max luminance) 23.7
On (min luminance) 10.3
Sleep 1.2
Calibrated (200 cd/m2) 21.7
Annual power consumption cost $7.90
Score Good

Power consumption
The BenQ V2420H has good power consumption rate, with a Default/On power draw of 23.7 watts, compared with the PX2370's power draw of 25.01 watts in the same test. The power consumption delta was much higher in our Sleep/Standby test, with the PX2370 pulling ahead with 0.27 watts and the Asus MS238H drawing more than four times as much power with 1.2 watts. With both monitor's center point calibrated to 200 candelas per square meter, the PX2370 draws 19.9 watts, while the V2420H draws 21.7 watts. Based on our formula, the BenQ V2420H cost $7.90 per year to power, compared with the PX2370's $7.65 annual power cost..

Brightness (in cd/m2)
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
BenQ V2400 Eco
228 
Asus MS238H
223 

Contrast ratio
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
Asus MS238H
942:1 
BenQ V2420H
929:1 

DisplayMate performance
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
BenQ V2400 Eco
93 
Asus MS238H
87 

Find out more about how we test LCD monitors.

Service and support
BenQ backs the V2420H 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. Pacific. Currently, the monitor's user manual, drivers, and additional software are not available on BenQ's Web site.

OVR
6.2

BenQ V2420H

Score Breakdown

Design 6Features 6Performance 6Support 8Setup 0