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Christmas Gift Guide

Remember the Asus T1 range of monitors we wrote about last week? Course you do. We've just been sent a sample of the 24-inch 24T1 version to play with and have wasted no time putting it through its paces.

First things first: it looks pretty sweet. We'd have made the bezel thinner, the floral pattern on the speaker grille a little less girlie, and played down the Asus logo on the front, but on the whole, the 24T1 is definitely non-muntish.

Connectivity isn't bad, either. Round the back, the monitor has a full suite of inputs, including two HDMI, two Scart, one D-Sub, component, composite and S-Video, as well as SP/DIF audio out. It's not all good news, however. There's no DVI input, no USB hub and no memory card reader -- features PC users will certainly miss -- but there is a digital tuner so you can watch Freeview.

Image quality on the 24T1 isn't bad. It has a 'Full HD' 1,920x1,080-pixel resolution and 16:9 aspect ratio, but there are downsides. There's a significant amount of light bleeding from the backlight along the lower part of the screen, which creates an annoying blue halo effect during dark scenes. The overall picture is a little on the dark side too, but both these issues are forgiveable. Unless you're a professional TV reviewer.

Speakers on most computer monitors sound pretty awful, but those on the 24T1 were more than adequate. They really fill the room, defying their 7W power rating. Those after a more private listening experience can also connect a set of headphones to a 3.5mm jack on the right side.

On the whole, we like this thing. If you're after a computer monitor you can use to watch TV while your PC is switched off (picture-in-picture is a no-no), you could do a whole lot worse. The 24T1 is available to buy later this month for an as-yet-undisclosed price.

Update: Asus says the 24T1 will retail for approximately £300.
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We're not fully convinced by the floral pattern on the speaker grille, but we're sure someone will like it.
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Full HD 1080p, Freeview and HDMI are all in full effect.
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There's a decent array of ports including two HDMI, two Scart, component and composite.
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When you can't find the remote, these control buttons let you change the channel and adjust the volume and change the video source.
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