ViewSonic's VX900 is bigger than most 19-inch LCDs, stretching more than 17 inches wide and almost 16 inches high. Adding to its size are its inch-and-a-half-wide silver bezel and two embedded, 3-watt stereo speakers that run underneath the bezel's bottom edge. The speakers are worth the extra inch and a half they tack on to the VX900, but if you're looking for high-performance audio, you'll be underwhelmed. Between the speakers sit eight slim, clearly labeled buttons that control the onscreen menus, the input signal, and the power; the menus are easy to use and simple to navigate. Unfortunately, the VX900 isn't very adjustable for a 19-inch display. The panel tilts 20 degrees backward and 5 degrees forward, but it doesn't swivel or telescope. It can, however, be attached to a VESA-compatible mount or bracket, making it easy to attach to a wall.
The VX900 sports loads of connections, including an audio input, a headphone jack, a microphone jack, and a proxy jack for external speakers; a free Mac adapter is available on request. ViewSonic also offers several optional "--="" rel="nofollow">&siteid=7&edid=&lop=txt&destcat=ex&destUrl=http%3A%2F%2Fstore%2Eviewsonic%2Ecom%2Fhtml%2FibeCCtpSctDspRte%2Ejsp%3Fsite%3DVS%5FSTORE%26section%3D10005" target="_blank">television tuner modules, which CNET did not test. The VX900 supports both digital and analog signals--nice, if you want to connect it to two computers--and ViewSonic includes cables for each. Toggling between the analog and digital signals is easy, but connecting the cables is a bit tricky: you have to pop two plastic panels off the back of the display to get to the ports, and the panels are not easy to reattach. Once they're on, however, they do effectively hide the clutter of cables.
Text looks sharp on the VX900, making this LCD well suited for word processing and basic Web surfing; plus, its very wide viewing angles (170 degrees horizontal and vertical) are useful for presentations or collaboration. But the VX900's image quality is not high enough for graphical tasks that involve precise colors and detailed graphics. In our tests, the panel had trouble displaying the subtle gradations of the grayscale, and adjacent blocks of colors sometimes bled together.
ViewSonic backs the VX900 with lifetime, 24/7, toll-free tech support and a standard three-year warranty; if the monitor needs repairs, you're responsible for the cost of shipping it to ViewSonic, but the company will pay for its return. ViewSonic's bad-pixel policy is decent--more than seven bad pixels is grounds for replacement. The VX900 comes with a printed, multilingual quick-start guide and a CD that contains drivers and more comprehensive documentation.
|CNET Labs DisplayMate tests (Longer bars indicate better performance)|
|Brightness in nits|