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ViewSonic VX2245wm ViewDock review: ViewSonic VX2245wm ViewDock

Review Sections

Manufacturer's specs

  • Resolution: 1,680x1,050 pixels
  • Dot pitch: 0.28mm
  • Pixel-response rate: 5ms
  • Contrast ratio: 700:1
  • Viewing angle: 170 degrees horizontal /160 degrees vertical
  • Connectivity: DVI, VGA, and USB
  • Other features: iPod dock, volume control, built-in speakers, headphone jack; eight-in-one media card reader, four USB ports
  • Not HDCP compliant
  • Included cables: VGA and DVI, plus two audio cables

As we said before, the iPod dock doesn't live up to its full potential. When the VX2245wm was first announced, we imagined it might have offered the ability to just pop in your iPod and listen to music or watch a movie without using a computer. This isn't the case--instead, it's really just like any other iPod dock, except that it's physically attached to the monitor. It can't play music through the speakers by itself--like an iPod speaker system can--so you could essentially duplicate its functionality with the USB/Dock connecter that comes with new iPods and iTunes. Of course, it wouldn't be as stylish or have the convenience of a dedicated dock, but it is a whole lot cheaper.

The built-in speakers are fine for listening to a quick YouTube clip, but anyone expecting more will be disappointed. There's also a "subwoofer" located in the stand, which adds a little extra bass response, but not anything like you'd expect from a real dedicated sub. Like all built-in monitor speakers, don't expect them to rock out your home office.

Performance

For the price, the performance of the Viewsonic VX2245wm is perfectly acceptable for the vast majority of everyday tasks. We didn't have any gripes while Web browsing, using a word processor, or performing similar tasks. We were a little let down for video games and DVD playback, as we felt the picture wasn't quite as sharp as we would have liked, and the video looked grainy. Of course, this is also a factor of watching a standard-definition DVD on a 22-inch monitor from about a foot away--you're going to notice flaws that you wouldn't if you were watching your TV from your couch. The VX2245wm had an overall score of 72 on CNET Labs' DisplayMate benchmarks, a few notches higher than the Viewsonic VX2235wm ($350), which received a 69.

The value of the Viewdock will largely depend on how much you value its styling and its limited iPod functionality. If you have no problem continuing to use a separate iPod dock and monitor, you'll probably better off going for the cheaper VX2235wm, which offers much of the same performance. If you like the all-in-one design and you appreciate an iPod dock on your monitor, as well as the additional connectivity options, then the Viewsonic VX2245wm might be a good fit. Even still, it might be worthwhile to hold out for the next-generation of the ViewDock, which could offer tighter integration between the display and your iPod without the extra wires in the back.

Viewsonic backs the VX2245wm with the industry standard three-year warranty on parts, labor, and the backlight, and there is also an option to buy an extended warranty. ViewSonic's support site has an e-mail support form, a knowledge portal, white papers, and driver downloads. Toll-free phone support is available 24/7, but you must go through Virtual Support Assistant to get the number.

Performance graphs

CNET Labs' DisplayMate tests
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
Viewsonic vg2021m
75 
Dell 2007FP
73 
Viewsonic vx2245wm
72 
Viewsonic vx2235wm
69 

Brightness scores
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
Viewsonic vg2021m
278 
Viewsonic vx2235wm
226 
Dell 2007FP
219 
Viewsonic vx2245wm
205 

Contrast Ratio
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
Viewsonic vx2245wm
686 
Viewsonic vx2235wm
668 
Viewsonic vg2021m
477 
Dell 2007FP
453 

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