Dell UltraSharp U2311H review

5 Jan 2011

Dell's 23in monitor delivers exceptional image quality, but the price is a touch high

Dell UltraSharp U2311H
Price when reviewed 
257
Buy it now for 
5

If you've been drooling over the gorgeous Dell UltraSharp U2711 and UltraSharp U3011 monitors, but been put off by the giant-sized prices, then hope is at hand. Dell's 23in UltraSharp U2311H combines a high-quality IPS panel with a Full HD resolution, and, best of all, it costs a third of the price of its super-sized stablemates.

Delta E

Delta E is a figure that represents the difference between the desired colour and the colour displayed onscreen. Below 1.0 is indistinguishable to the human eye; an experienced viewer may notice differences around 3-4. We measure Delta E with a colorimeter before and after calibration.

Even before you turn it on, the UltraSharp U2311H makes a strong first impression. The crisp, square design and matte grey and black plastic give it an air of class which eludes the likes of Viewsonic's VP2365wb. Practicality hasn`t fallen by the wayside, though. The stand twists left and right, rotates into portrait mode and rises up and down by 100mm. Connectivity runs to D-SUB, DVI, and DisplayPort inputs, plus a four-port USB hub.

Dell UltraSharp U2311H

After installing the monitor driver supplied by Dell, we weren`t entirely impressed by the image quality. Colours appeared wildly oversaturated, and in gradient tests we noticed obvious banding artefacts.

However, changing the monitor to its Custom (RGB) setting, leaving the individual Red, Green and Blue controls set to maximum and uninstalling Dell's driver swiftly improved matters. Our test images and Blu-ray discs now looked amazing, and the gradient test showed a smooth transtition from black to white with no banding.

Putting the U2311H to the test with X-Rite's i1Display 2 colorimeter produced impressive results. Its colour temperature of 6,466k and average gamma of 2.2 were almost perfect, and colour accuracy was good too, with an average Delta E of 2.2, and a peak of 6.3 in the blues. Contrast was impressive, with a recorded ratio of 945:1.

The U2311H isn't quite as accurate as some of its rivals, but that's balanced by precious few weaknesses. Input lag averaged only 12ms, and while the E-IPS panel's response time isn't as quick as monitors with TN panls, it didn't bother us during gaming.

In fact, the only thing that might temper your enthusiasm for the U2311H is its price: it's significantly more expensive than the A-listed ViewSonic VP2365wb. The Dell gives a slightly more even performance, but with ViewSonic's zero-pixel defect guarantee and equally fine colour reproduction, the UltraSharp U2311H has to settle for second best.

Details

Price ex VAT £219
Price inc VAT £257
Overall rating 5
Image quality 5
Features & Design 5
Value for Money 4

Main specifications

Screen size 23.0in
Aspect ratio 16:9
Resolution 1920 x 1080
Screen brightness 300cd/m2
Pixel response time 14ms
Contrast ratio 1,000:1
Pixel pitch 0.265mm
Horizontal viewing angle 178 degrees
Vertical viewing angle 178 degrees
Speaker type none
Speaker power ouput N/A
TV tuner no
TV tuner type N/A

Connections

DVI inputs 1
VGA inputs 1
HDMI inputs 0
DisplayPort inputs 1
Scart inputs 0
HDCP support yes
Upstream USB ports 1
USB ports (downstream) 4
3.5mm audio input jacks 0
Headphone output no
Other audio connectors none

Accessories supplied

Other cables supplied VGA
Internal power supply yes

Power consumption

Peak power consumption 33W
Idle power consumption 1W

Image adjustments

Brightness control? yes
Contrast control? yes
Colour temperature settings Standard, Multimedia, Game, Warm, Cool, Custom colour

Ergonomics

Forward tilt angle 5 degrees
Backward tilt angle 20 degrees
Swivel angle 90 degrees
Height adjustment 100mm
Pivot (portrait) mode? yes
Bezel width 20mm

Dimensions

Dimensions 550 x 184 x 356mm (WDH)
Weight 6.500kg

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