Is it a bird? Is it a plane? Is it a PC monitor or a 3D TV? Scratch the first two options, and mix what's left, because the Samsung T27A950 is an unapologetic hybrid of both monitor and telly. Packing a 27-inch, 1080p, LED screen, Freeview HD tuner and, this wafer-thin screen wants to be all things to all users. And it very nearly succeeds. It's available now for around £700.
Certainly it's going look as good on your work desk as it would in your living room. The design is dramatic: the pencil thin panel is side-mounted above a pedestal stand which, rather ingeniously, contains a tuner, connectivity options, and other gubbins. It's a once-piece unit, so no assembly is required. To help keep things slim, juice comes from an external power brick.
The rear of the pedestal offers up two HDMI ports, component connections, a Scart socket, an Ethernet jack and a pair of USBs. You also get a Common Interface card slot, RF aerial input and digital audio output.
The same only smaller
The 120Hz panel itself is actually exactly the same as that found in, as it the edge-mounted LED backlight. One key benefit of LED edge lights on a panel of this size is that lighting uniformity is much easier to maintain. Backlight bleeding is minor.
As a general use monitor, the T27A950 works well enough. It uses a standard twisted-nematic panel. It's fast enough to avoid blurring with HD TV sources and high resolution games, although we found that off-axis viewing does cause colour and contrast to diminish. You can combat this to a certain extent with a 'magic angle' mode that adjusts colour and contrast according to the viewing angle.
Response time is rated at an unremarkable three milliseconds, while the optimal resolution is 1,920x1,080 pixels at 60Hz. Unlike Samsung's TVs, the panel supports sRGB for an extended colour range.
The package includes one pair of Samsung's active shutter glasses, plus SyncMaster TriDef 3D Game Launcher software for yout PC. It should be noted that the only way to connect a PC to the T27A950 is via HDMI.
Hold on to your retinas
Image quality is good for general PC usage. Text is crisp and movement clean. Switch to TV mode, and you'll benefit from impressive dynamics, solid black levels and sumptuous colour.