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LG Flatron W2053TQ review: LG Flatron W2053TQ

LG Flatron W2053TQ

Eric Franklin

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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7 min read

The LG Flatron W2053TQ can be found priced from $150 to $180. The monitor includes a couple of useful eco-friendly options, and it has decent movie and game performance. Its matte screen also allows dark details to be seen more easily than the HP 2009m's glossy and reflective screen. The two are virtually matched evenly in performance. However, the HP is slightly less expensive and has a more intuitive onscreen display. As such, we'd recommend the HP to those who are on a budget, while the LG is the best choice for those who are concerned about energy consumption.


LG Flatron W2053TQ

The Good

The LG Flatron W2053TQ's eco-friendly options lower energy costs, and it has decent movie and game performance.

The Bad

The LG Flatron W2053TQ'sOSD is too difficult to navigate and the buttons are too sensitive. Also, the only ergonomic option is screen tilt.

The Bottom Line

The LG Flatron W2053TQ has useful power consumption options, but a badly designed onscreen display.

Design and features
The LG Flatron W2053TQ has a fingerprint-attracting, glossy black bezel, surrounding a 20-inch nonreflective, matte screen. The bezel measures 0.75 inch wide on the right and left sides. The display's full width is 19 inches, slightly longer than the HP 2009m's 19.75-inch length. The LG's panel is 2.75 inches deep from bezel to back, and the bottom of the panel sits nearly 2.5 inches above the desktop. The back of the monitor continues the glossy motif and includes an arc-shaped vent.

iPad 5 iPad 4
WiFi capacity and price 16GB;
16GB ($499), 32GB ($599), 64GB ($699), 128GB ($799)
WiFi and cellular 16GB;
16GB ($629), 32GB ($729), 64GB ($829), 128GB ($929)
Colors and material Black, white; aluminum
Dimensions 9.5 x 7.3 x 0.37 inches
Weight 1.44 pounds (Wi-Fi);
1.46 pounds (cellular)
Display 9.7 inch IPS;
2048x1536 pixels (264ppi)
Processor Dual-core A6X chip
GPU Quad-core graphics
Rear camera 5-megapixel camera;
1080p HD video
Front-facing camera 1.2-megapixel;
720p HD
Battery life Up to 10 hours Wi-Fi, 9 hours cellular
Connector Lightning
Special feature Touch ID Siri

The glossy oval-shaped footstand measures 9.5 inches wide by 7.25 inches deep. It wobbles a bit when knocked from the sides, but not as violently as the HP 2009m does. The LG Flatron W2053TQ includes about a 15-degree back tilt as its sole ergonomic option--no panel swiveling, pivoting, or screen height adjustment. Connection options, which are limited to DVI and VGA, are easy to access, since the monitor's low profile neck is a good 2 inches away from them.

The bottom of the bezel measures 2.25 inches in length, not including a 0.5-inch long, transparent "lip" that hangs off of it. On the right side of the lip is a wavelike groove that reflects light from the power button's red LED. The power button sits above the groove on the bezel. To the left of the power button is the touch-sensitive OSD array. The array included six buttons: Smart, Fun, Menu, Engine/Down, Source/Up, and Autoset. Pressing Smart brings up an eco-friendly menu with on/off controls for the ambient light sensor, an autobright setting that lowers the monitor's brightness when displaying a bright screen, and a one- or two-hour monitor shutoff timer option. Under the Fun option is a 4:3 in wide mode for displaying the screen in a 4:3 aspect ratio. Also under Fun is a photo effect option that lets you set the screen to take on three photo effects: Gaussian Blur, Sepia, and Monochrome. The Engine/Down button offers four presets: Movie, Internet, User-defined, and Normal.

The Menu includes controls for brightness, contrast, and color temperature, including sRGB, which you use to adjust the custom color by changing the red, green, and blue values individually. Also included is a sharpness control that allows you to select from 10 levels. Adjusting it below level 4 caused Web sites to look rather blurry, but at higher levels, pages looked crisp and clear. We didn't notice a difference in quality when we adjusted sharpness during movies, but we recommend a setting of at least 5 for games.

Each OSD button is invisible, but touching any of the button names causes red LED lights to illuminate over the names. Touching the appropriate lights returns a different menu; however, we still found ourselves constantly touching the names, expecting a menu to appear. To change the brightness, we followed a clunky menu hierarchy. You press Menu to bring up main menu, and press Autoset to select brightness/contrast. The brightness and contrast gauges are aligned vertically, but you can't cycle through them using the up and down arrows; instead, you must use the Autoset buttons to do so and then use the up and down arrows to change the value. We found this navigation unintuitive and clunky.

Manufacturer's specifications:
Resolution: 1,600x900 pixels
Pixel-response rate: 2ms
Contrast ratio: 50,000:1 (Dynamic)
Brightness: 300cd/m2
Connectivity: DVI, VGA
HDCP compliant? Yes
Included video cables? DVI
Backlight type: CCFL
Panel type: TN
Aspect ratio: 16:9

We tested the LG Flatron W2053TQ with its DVI connection. The display posted a composite score of 87 on CNET Labs' DisplayMate-based performance tests, matching the 20-inch HP2009m's 87. Both monitors handled text well; however, we found that the HP performed better in the 9,500K color temperature than the 6,500K temp. White text on black looked fine at 9,500K temperature, but it had a distracting yellowish hue in the 6,500K temp. Conversely, text on the LG looked better at 6,500K, while in 9,500K, the screen was too bluish. In our color ramping tests, which check for color banding, the HP performed slightly better than the LG, but neither had a stellar showing, suggesting that both monitors could have color banding issues in certain apps.

The W2053TQ achieved a brightness score of 270 candelas per square meter (cd/m2)--lower than LG's claimed 300 cd/m2 max. The W2009m fared a bit worse with a brightness of 255 cd/m2. On our black screen test, both monitors exhibited heavy backlight bleedthrough on the top and bottom edges of the displays.

We looked at "Kill Bill Vol. 1" on DVD and were pleasantly surprised by the lack of ghosting in both monitors in our ghosting test scene--a close-up of The Bride's big toe. Colors looked full, but didn't have the "pop" we desired. Also, due to the backlight bleeding, the black bars at the top and bottom of the screen are distractingly light. Unreal Tournament 3 looked fairly vibrant on both monitors; however, their relatively low brightness prevented the colors from having the impact you'd want in a game. The game however, played quickly with no signs of streaking, trails, or pixel lag.

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 and gamma correction as they were intended. Most monitors are made to be viewed only at that angle. Depending on its panel type, picture quality at nonoptimal angles varies. Like most monitors, the LG W2053TQ uses a TN panel, which gets overly bright or overly dark when viewed from nonoptimal angles. When we viewed the W2053TQ from the sides or below, the screen appeared to darken only a couple inches off from optimal. From the sides, text is still readable until viewing from about 80 degrees. When viewing from the bottom, the text becomes illegible at about 70 degrees, but never got too dark. Of course, when viewed from the optimal angle, we had no problems.

In the power consumption tests, the LG W2053TQ has a large 3.55-watt power draw on standby, and its On/Default power draw was higher than we'd like for a 20-inch monitor. The LG drew 37.21 watts in this state, compared with the 21.5-inch Lenovo L215, which drew only 28.17 watts. The HP 2009m drew a smaller 30.55 watts in its On/Default state. When we switched on its Eco options, however, the LG improved its carbon footprint drawing only 20.36 watts on the On/Default state. Based on our formula, the LG W2053TQ would cost $13.56 per year to run normally and $8.54 per year with its power-saving features turned on. This is compared with the Lenovo's $8.93 per year and the HP's $9.46.

Juice box
LG Flatron W2053TQ Average watts per hour
On (default luminance) 37.21 (20.46 in eco mode)
On (max luminance) 37.21
On (min luminance) 16.66
Sleep 3.55
Calibrated (200 cd/m2) 28.9
Annual energy cost $13.56 ($8.54 in eco mode)
Score Fair

DisplayMate Tests
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
Dell SX2210

Brightness in cd/m2
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
Dell SX2210
HP 2009m

Contrast ratio
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
Dell SX2210
Lenovo L215p
HP 2009m

Find out more about how we test LCD monitors.

Service and support
LG backs the Flatron W2053TQ with a three-year parts and labor warranty that covers the backlight for only one year. That's a bit less than other vendors, such as Dell, that usually offer backlight coverage for three years. The company offers repair service in two working days and pays freight shipping both ways for one year. During the second and third year, the customer pays one way and LG pays the return freight. Live Web and e-mail chat are also supported as is toll-free phone support.


LG Flatron W2053TQ

Score Breakdown

Design 7Features 7Performance 7Support 7
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