Our expert, award-winning staff selects the products we cover and rigorously researches and tests our top picks. If you buy through our links, we may get a commission. Reviews ethics statement
Editor's note: The original overall score of 7.5 for the V7 D24W33 was the result of a miscalculation of the subrating scores. The new score of 7.0 accurately reflects the subrating scores we gave the V7. We apologize for any confusion this may have caused.
With a list price of $429, the V7 D24W33 is the cheapest 24-inch display we've reviewed to date (and it can be found for as little as $399). The next closest in price is the Gateway FHD2400, which can be found for as low as $460. Gateway's LCD provides many more connection options, but the V7 outclasses it when it comes to DisplayMate and real-world performance--particularly DVD playback. The Dell UltraSharp 2408WFP delivers comparable performance to the V7 and more connections, but it will run you $600 or more. With only VGA and HDMI (the display includes a HDMI-to-DVI cable) video connections, the V7 D24W33 does not earn many versatility points. We doubt, however, you'll find a cheaper 24-inch LCD with comparable performance.
The V7 D24W33 is an ordinary-looking monitor with a dark gray finish. It has a 1-inch thick bezel on each side and on the top. On the bottom, the bezel distance is extended by another 1.5 inches to include a white V7 logo and to house the built-in speakers. The stereo speakers are located in the bottom corners of the display. Each speaker is surrounded by a series of horizontal grooves that can make a sort of "zip" noise if you quickly pass your fingers on them.
The screen easily rotates about 50 degrees to the left and right and tilts back about 30 degrees. It also pivots 90 degrees to the right for portrait mode. What we really like, though, is the effect a vertical screen has on certain applications like Word, where the program will automatically adjust to the pivot. For instance, if you're viewing a document in the print layout format where you have two pages side by side and you pivot the screen, Word adjusts the document so that one page is above the other. Unfortunately, the Pivot software included--version 8.21--does not adjust the screen automatically when the screen pivots. You are required to either rotate the image via the software before or after actually rotating the monitor.
The included 5-feet long power cord is too short for our tastes, especially if you are going to be pivoting the monitor with any regularity. The screen height adjusts to a long 5.1 inches, and the rectangular stand provides a solid footing, measuring 12 inches wide and 8.5 inches deep. The V7 D24W33 stayed upright and didn't wobble that much when we knocked our test bench around a bit.
The On Screen Display is located in the bottom center of the display, above the V7 logo. The buttons are wide and when pressed give a satisfying snap. Each button is labeled with very clear white text and the OSD navigation was intuitive, allowing for the usual manipulation of brightness, contrast, and color, which include only three temperature presets. The speaker volume is controlled from within the OSD, although we'd prefer to have the two arrow buttons default to volume control, as it can sometimes be a pain to have to navigate the OSD just to adjust the volume. Along those same lines, a mute button would have been useful as well.
Pixel-response rate: 2ms
Contrast ratio: 1,000:1
Connectivity: HDMI, VGA, Audio for built-in speakers
HDCP compliant? Yes
Included video cables? HDMI-to-DVI, VGA
When it comes to connection options, the V7 D24W33 is the bizarro-world version of the Dell UltraSharp 2408WFP we reviewed a while back. While the Dell included DVI, HDMI, Component, and DisplayPort, the V7 D24W33 includes HDMI and VGA. That's it. No other connection options whatsoever. It seems that V7 skimped on options to keep the price low. Thankfully, V7 does include a HDMI-to-DVI cable so you aren't forced to seek out a graphics card with an HDMI port to view the display at its native 1,920x1,200 resolution. There is also a headphone jack sensibly placed on the lower right-hand corner of the display.
In our DisplayMate-based labs tests, the V7 D24W33 was one of the best performers we've yet seen, posting a composite score of 90--just shy of the highest score we've seen of 92. That score was achieved by the two 30-inchers we recently reviewed, the Samsung SyncMaster 305T and the Gateway XHD3000. The D24W33's score is tied with the Dell UltraSharp 2408WFP, but the two monitors excelled in different areas. The D24W33 got high marks in our screen uniformity tests. The screen uniformity tests look for things like streaking in static images as well as backlight bleed-through. The D24W33 saw quite a bit less backlight bleed-through compared with the Dell. The Dell--thanks to its higher contrast--was able to ace our Extreme Grayscale tests, which tests a display's ability to produce true black while still delivering the darkest grays of the grayscale. The V7 had trouble with this test thanks to its low max brightness and low contrast ratio, each which contribute to dark grays being difficult to distinguish from black.
DVD playback on the Dell UltraSharp 2408WFP was very impressive when we reviewed it, but the V7 overshadows it and all displays we've tested recently. In particular, Kill Bill Vol. 1 on DVD looked great with an impressively sharp picture and accurate colors. Also, one scene we use to test for image ghosting is the "wiggle your big toe" scene. When viewing this scene on other displays, it's usually very easy to spot the ghosting, but here we had a hard time finding it. It's there, but you really have to look closely to see it. Blu-ray playback was outstanding as well, with fine details such as facial blemishes seen very easily on character's faces in Swordfish. As we've come to expect, World of Warcraft looked great, with vivid colors and no motion smearing whatsoever.
The one caveat to such great entertainment performance is the disappointing viewing angle. V7 claims a viewing angle of 160, but we found that the quality of the screen dipped noticeably when viewing the screen just about a foot to the right or left and about half that when viewing above or below.
V7's claim of a maximum brightness of 250 cd/m2 was somewhat lofty as our tests showed a max brightness of 190. Its contrast ratio was even more off the mark compared with our scores. V7 claimed a contrast ratio of 1,000:1 and our result was 670:1, which is quite a difference. Our labs results usually don't achieve 100 percent parity with a manufacturer's claims, but this is a larger difference than we typically see. We don't know what methodology V7 used to get its contrast ratio result, which makes it impossible to ascertain why there was such a disparity.
The built-in speakers produce decent sound, but they had a slight tinny ring to them. Also, we wish the volume could have been increased. The speaker's "10" sounded more like a 6 or 7 to us.
Find out more about how we test LCD monitors.
Service and support
The V7 D24W33 is backed by a three-year parts-and-labor warranty and toll-free phone support Monday through Friday from 5:30 a.m.to 5:00 p.m. PT. No weekend support or e-mail support is offered. Also, no drivers were available at V7's Web site, but the user manual and specification sheet were.