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It's a great feeling when you can get a capable device at a not-so-capable price. The ViewSonic VX2450wm-LED is one of the most popular nonreviewed (until now) monitors on CNET, and though ViewSonic is a solid monitor company, much of that interest stems from the fact that it's a 24-inch display, available for less than $200.
For someone looking for a by-the-numbers display, a cheap monitor from a known vendor with a nice -size screen is hard to pass up. But does the ViewSonic VX2450wm-LED offer more than that?
Design and features
The ViewSonic VX2450wm-LED takes a lot of what has worked in recent LED monitor designs without getting too ambitious.
Its glossy black bezel is adorned with a transparent "lip" on the bottom. In the middle of the lip is a 1-inch-wide power button that glows blue when powered on. The bezel measures a fairly short 0.8 inch on the sides and the distance from the bottom of the lip to the desktop is 3.2 inches at its longest.
The panel's initial depth measures a very thin 0.6 inch, with another 1.25 inches tacked on the back to house the connections and ventilation system. The monitor's corners are sharp and kind of pointy, which betrays its otherwise rounded edges. The square-shaped foot stand measures 9.2 inches and just about the same in depth. When knocked from the sides, the display wobbles considerably, but with little chance of it actually toppling.
Like most other white LED-based monitors, the ViewSonic VX2450wm-LED includes only tilt as its ergonomic option, forgoing swivel, pivot, or height adjustment. The middle of the rear chassis is elevated about 1.2 inches with DVI and VGA on the right side and the power port and audio-in port on the left. Connections face down, tucked a little too far up into their alcove and, as a result, are a little frustrating to access. On the surface are four empty screw holes awaiting VESA connection to a wall.
In the bottom-right corner of the bezel is the onscreen display (OSD) array, signified by a bright white "1" and "2," as well as an up and down arrow.
It's been some time since I've reviewed a ViewSonic monitor, so we're pleasantly surprised that the company has redesigned its older OSD, at least from an aesthetic standpoint. Its actual functionality doesn't seem to have changed much, however. All your favorite OSD options are here, including Brightness and Contrast, with an sRGB preset as well as four color temperature presets: 5,000k, 6,500k, 7,500k, and 9,300k. Individual Red, Green and Blue options are also available. The Dynamic contrast option will automatically adjust the display's brightness based on the darkness or brightness level of whatever's on screen. Eco mode also adjusts the brightness based on one of three choices: Standard, Optimize, and Conserve.
Build quality is decent, except the foot stand, which seems brittle and plastic-like to the touch.
|Design and feature highlights|
|Ergonomic options||20 degree back tilt|
|VESA wall mount support||Yes|
|Included video cables||VGA, DVI|
|Screen film||Matte with AG coating|
|Number of presets||5|
|Picture options||Brightness, Contrast|
|Color controls||RGB and four color temperature options|
|Additional features||Eco Mode, Dynamic Contrast|
We tested the ViewSonic VX2450wm-LED through its DVI input, connected to a Windows Vista PC, using our own DVI cable. The display posted a composite score of 88 on CNET Labs' DisplayMate-based performance tests.
The screen has a pretty heavy amount of antiglare (AG) screen coating, but reflections are still possible with objects in close proximity to the screen, especially when viewing dark scenes. There's no amount of glossiness, however, thanks to the high level of coating.
DisplayMate: The VX2450wm-LED displayed dark gray, visible down to a low level of 2, and light gray was visible to a fairly high level of 252. Judging from these findings, the display would likely not have much trouble displaying dark detail and would likely not confuse white with light colors.
Color performance overall was good, though it, too, had a problem escaping the green hue problem that crops up on many monitors during the color-tracking test.
Backlight bleeding was prevalent along the bottom edge of the screen and there was some slight bleeding along the top.
Text: It's difficult to screw up text on a modern monitor; we not only look at the text itself, but also the effect of black text on a white background, which can sometimes cause a weird yellowish glow to emanate around the text. On VX2450wm-LED, black text on white looked clear, without any obvious color tint problems. Also, fonts were clearly visible down to a 6.8-point size.
Movies: We tested the ViewSonic VX2450wm-LED using the Blu-ray version of "Avatar." The movie had fairly accurate colors with some slight, but noticeable green hue problems, with certain lighter faces having trouble shaking that sickly look. We dialed the green down to 91 (with the blue and red at 100) and saw some significant improvement. Selecting 7,500k from the presets worked almost as well.
Still, details weren't as clear as on the Samsung PX2370, and while dark detail was easy to see, the VX2450wm-LED's black level never got lower than a pseudo-dark gray.
Games: When evaluating the look of games on a monitor, the two most important features to consider are vibrancy and color. If the monitor can display games with a bright and vibrant cleanness, this goes a long way toward benefiting its looks. If colors can also pop with fullness and depth, games will usually look great.
Starcraft II looked great with good vibrancy and color reproduction. Still, it had trouble matching the rich vibrancy and color of the PX2370.
To test refresh rate, we used DisplayMate's motion graphics tests and stared at a number of colored blocked as they moved around the screen at various speeds. The VX2450wm-LED clearly had longer trails behind its blocks compared to the PX2370 and would likely have more issue with streaking in games.
Photos: Photo performance was decent, but showed too much green even in SRGB mode. The 7,500k mode we felt was best as it cut out much of the green.
Recommended settings: We used SpectraCal's CalPC to calibrate the ViewSonic VX2450wm-LED for bright-room viewing. The following settings are what the monitor had been adjusted to after calibration.
Viewing angle: 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 colors as the manufacturer intended. Most monitors aren't designed 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 not viewed from optimal angles.
The ViewSonic VX2450wm-LED uses a TN panel, so its viewing angle from the sides, top, and especially underneath is narrower than high-end displays like the Asus PA246Q, which uses IPS panel technology.
Power consumption: The ViewSonic VX2450wn-LED achieved good power consumption, with a Default/On power draw of 20.7 watts, compared with the PX2370's 25.01 watts in the same test. Fairly close results, but these power consumption contests are usually decided during sleep time.
In our Sleep/Standby test, the VX2450wn-LED costs 0.11 watt and the PX2370 pulled a higher 0.27 watt. The VX2450wn-LED's lower power consumption during sleep is enough to beat out the PX2370's overall power consumption costs by a good amount, and by "good amount" I mean $1.40.
Based on our formula, the VX2450wn-LED would cost $6.25 per year to run, compared with the PX2370's higher $7.65 per year.
|ViewSonic VX2450wm-LED||Average watts per hour|
|On (default luminance)||20.7|
|On (max luminance)||20.7|
|On (min luminance)||11|
|Calibrated (200 cd/m2)||17.2|
|Annual power consumption cost||$6.25|
Find out more about how we test LCD monitors
Service and support
The ViewSonic VX2450wn-LED comes with solid coverage, including a three-year warranty that covers parts, labor, and the backlight. The company offers 24-7 toll-free technical support phone number and e-mail-based help. However, there is no Web chat support like some other vendors offer. Navigating ViewSonic's Web site and finding drivers and the monitor's user manual was easy.
The ViewSonic VX2450wm-LED is a 24-inch monitor with a $200 price tag. For some, that's 'nuff said. It also has decent performance overall and good (enough) OSD options. It's missing HDMI, so if you're planning to have this be more than just a general-use monitor, you'll be disappointed. Also, its black level is shallow and it has a hard time distancing itself completely from green hue issues. That said, you can't beat that price. Unless the lack of HDMI is a deal breaker or if you plan to do more than general computing or light gaming and movie watching, and as long as you know you're getting a bare-bones monitor here, you won't be disappointed.