BenQ EW2420 review
Affordable for a VA-based display, but poor presets and disappointing image quality extinguish its appeal
Take a glance through its specs and BenQ’s monitor looks like a bona-fide bargain. Not only does it offer 24in of screen space and Full HD resolution, it also eschews the cheaper TN panels of the competition for a high-quality A-MVA panel from AU Optronics.
It even looks pretty good. The smart, unfussy design doesn’t stretch to luxuries such as an adjustable stand, but DVI, D-SUB and twin HDMI ports are present, while a four-port USB hub provides two sockets at the rear and two more at the side. There’s also a handy 3.5mm headphone output at its side.
Image quality, however, is decidedly mediocre. At its default settings, poor colour reproduction left our test images looking unnatural, with skin tones and subtle pastel shades rendered completely incorrectly. An average Delta E of 10.6 wins the BenQ the dubious accolade of being one of the least accurate monitors we’ve reviewed in recent times.
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.
Any hope that BenQ’s preset image modes might help matters are soon dashed, most adding a horrible, over-sharpened effect that ruins ﬁne detail and text clarity. We also observed horrendous smearing on moving images. We managed to mostly ﬁx this by switching on the panel’s overdrive feature, a setting that really should be enabled by default.
It’s a shame as the panel itself is obviously quite capable. The typical VA panel strengths are in evidence: deep, lustrous blacks combine with measured contrast ratios of well over 2,500:1. And tweaking the EW2420’s settings by hand yielded much better results. After carefully adjusting the monitor’s RGB controls we managed to get the Delta E down to 2.9, but only thanks to the guidance of our X-Rite colorimeter.
Had BenQ paid more attention to providing well-calibrated presets, the EW2420 could have been an unqualiﬁed bargain. Instead, it’s a big disappointment.
|Price ex VAT||£151|
|Price inc VAT||£181|
|Features & Design||4|
|Value for Money||3|
|Resolution||1920 x 1080|
|Pixel response time||8ms|
|Horizontal viewing angle||178 degrees|
|Vertical viewing angle||178 degrees|
|Speaker power ouput||3W|
|TV tuner type||N/A|
|Upstream USB ports||1|
|USB ports (downstream)||4|
|3.5mm audio input jacks||1|
|Other audio connectors||none|
|Other cables supplied||VGA|
|Internal power supply||yes|
|Peak power consumption||40W|
|Idle power consumption||1W|
|Colour temperature settings||Bluish, Reddish, Normal, User|
|Forward tilt angle||5 degrees|
|Backward tilt angle||20 degrees|
|Swivel angle||0 degrees|
|Pivot (portrait) mode?||no|
|Dimensions||581 x 180 x 439mm (WDH)|