Samsung SyncMaster 2233RZ review: Samsung SyncMaster 2233RZ

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The 1080p Blu-ray version of "House of Flying Daggers" saw many of the same full colors and deep blacks that we saw on the "War of the Worlds" DVD. It's not going to rock anyone's world, but for a 22-inch, 16:10 computer monitor, we were impressed.

The Samsung SyncMaster 2233RZ posted a brightness score of 280 candelas per square meters, according to our test, which is somewhat lower than the 300 cd/m2 maximum claimed by Samsung display. This score is lower than both the Gateway HD2201's 289 cd/m2 brightness and the VX2265wm's 266 cd/m2 brightness ratings as well. Our tested contrast rating for the 2233RZ actually exceeded Samsung's 1,000:1 claim by scoring 1,024:1, slightly lower than the vx2265wm's 1,057:1 tested contrast ratio. Bear in mind that the methodology used by most vendors for determining contrast ratio is unknown; however, you can read about CNET Labs' methodology here.

We tried out Crysis on the 2233RZ and while our testbed cannot come close to the hardware requirements the game demands to run with all the prettifying graphic features turned on, we liked what we saw. With a 3ms response time, there was no evidence of streaking and ghosting. Colors looked accurate and the Game preset worked appropriately. The ViewSonic also ran Crysis well, with slightly more washed-out textures. Unfortunately, viewing the game from a lower-than-optimal viewing angle made the screen darken to the point that we couldn't see graphic details of the game--typical of most TN panels and has nothing to do with the game's performance. (See the paragraph at the bottom of this section for more details on viewing angle.)

When we played movies at 120Hz refresh rate--be they DVD or Blu-ray--we did not notice a difference from playing them in 60Hz. For the 2233RZ and the VX2265wm, there is no advantage to playing movies at 120Hz when connected to a computer. We did not test either with a standalone DVD or Blu-ray player. With games, we did see some difference. In Unreal Tournament 3, when we panned our viewpoint back and forth very quickly in 60Hz mode, we noticed that the wall textures were blurry compared with if we did the same in 120Hz mode where the textures remained clear.

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 not made to be viewed at any other angle. Depending on its 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 SyncMaster 2233RZ uses a TN panel, and when it is viewed from the sides or bottom, the screen appeared to darken only a couple inches off from optimal. Of course, when viewed from the optimal angle, we had no problems.

Juice box
Samsung SyncMaster 2233RZ Average watts per hour
On (Default Luminance) 45.05
On (Max Luminance) 45.05
On (Min Luminance) 24.6
Sleep 0.61
Calibrated (200 cd/m2) 34.15
Score Fair
Annual energy cost (@$0.1135/kWh) $13.86

Brightness (in cd/m2)
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
ViewSonic VX2255wm FuHzion
266 

Contrast ratio
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
ViewSonic VX2255wm FuHzion
1,057:1 
Samsung SyncMaster 2233RZ
1,024:1 
Dell SP2208WFP
927:1 
Gateway HD2201
856:1 

DisplayMate performance
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
Samsung SyncMaster 2233RZ
89 
ViewSonic VX2255wm FuHzion
85 

Find out more about how we test LCD monitors.

Service and support
Samsung backs the SyncMaster 2233RZ 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 e-mail and Web chat support. Currently, documentation and support software are not available for the 2233RZ on Samsung's Web site.

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