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Samsung SyncMaster C27A750 review

Verdict

It’s too expensive to totally recommend right now, but as a proof of concept the C27A750 works brilliantly

Review Date: 7 Apr 2011

Reviewed By: Sasha Muller

Price when reviewed: £374 (£449 inc VAT)

Buy it now for: £495
(see more store prices)

Overall Rating
5 stars out of 6

Features & Design
6 stars out of 6

Value for Money
3 stars out of 6

Image Quality
5 stars out of 6

Samsung’s SyncMaster C27A750 is the first of a new breed of monitors. Designed to pair with a laptop, it replaces the traditional video cable with wireless ultra wideband (UWB) technology. Plug a tiny wireless dongle into a USB port on your laptop, install the drivers, and the C27A750 will pair up and display the video feed just like any other monitor.

Samsung suggests that the USB receiver must remain within 75cm of the monitor to guarantee a stable wireless connection, but in our tests it worked up to 4m away, only breaking up once we moved past the 5m mark. Full HD movies played smoothly and, thanks to non-existent lag, even fast-paced games such as Quake Live were perfectly playable.

Ingeniously, the C27A750 also functions as a wireless docking station, providing two USB 2 and two USB 3 ports, 10/100 Ethernet and a headphone output. Leave your home broadband and extra peripherals plugged into the base, and they’ll link wirelessly through to your laptop when you get home and connect.

Samsung CA750 Central Station - side

One limitation is that the wireless connection restricts all of the USB ports to USB 2 speeds – transfers from a standard USB 2 hard drive peaked at around 7MB/sec. If you want to use the full speed of the USB 3 ports Samsung also supplies a USB 3 cable; connect that from the TFT to your laptop and not only will you have a lightning-fast hub, but it will also carry the video and audio signals to the TFT – no video cables required.

The C27A750’s huge 27in panel settles for a relatively low 1,920 x 1,080 resolution, but the image quality is high. In our measurements it exceeded its rated brightness at an eye-searing 343cd/m2, and had a good contrast ratio of 928:1. The vivid colour reproduction is very accurate by TN panel standards, with a low average Delta E of 3.

The monitor’s slim, contoured silhouette looks every inch the style icon, too. The stand on our pre-production sample was a touch wobbly and stiff – we needed two hands to adjust its position – but the slender neck also allows a generous range of adjustment, craning forward, backwards and rising up and down by 75mm.

At a good £150 more than most standard 27in TN-panel monitors, the Samsung C27A750 is very expensive. But, like most great ideas, it’s only once you return to a traditional monitor and the rigmarole of cable-swapping that you appreciate the Samsung’s brilliance. We can’t say we’d buy it at this price, but it’s undoubtedly a technology we have high hopes for.

The C27A750 is due for release in late May 2011.

Author: Sasha Muller

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User comments

Jaw dropped

Dear PCPro staff
Can I be gifted one? I will renew my subscription for the next 20 years immediately.

By PSilva on 7 Apr 2011

UWB enabled mobile?

now all you need is a UWB enabled mobile and you could place your mobile next to a keyboard, monitor and mouse and start using it. if every office had a couple of these people could hot desk from one to another need to carry a lap top. planes, trains etc. all with the same standard gear.

imagine a life without wires...

By SimonCorlett on 7 Apr 2011

no need to carry laptop.

can we have an edit facility in these posts please!

By SimonCorlett on 7 Apr 2011

Surely it still needs a power cable? Am I missing something, or has the definition of wireless changed, just like the definition of unlimited?

By jagdipa on 7 Apr 2011

@jagdipa

It needs a power cable, yes, but it's still brilliant.

I currently have it on my desk, with four USB devices and Ethernet connected to it. I walk up, put my laptop on the desk, turn it on and it just works. All I have to do is plug in one wireless dongle. When I take the laptop away, I only have to unplug my laptop's power cable.

Give it a few years, and I'd be surprised if laptops and monitors don't start supporting this kind of technology as standard. Makes perfect sense.

By SashaMuller on 8 Apr 2011

Multi Monitor Setup?

Is it limited to just one monitor or can you have a wireless multi-monitor setup?

By Macer71 on 8 Apr 2011

Multi Monitors?

Yes. Up to three can co-exist, but all need seperate dongles.

By SashaMuller on 9 Apr 2011

Image quality?

Well it must have some comparison to the mac... how does it rate? Also with the 'eye glaring' contrast ration how does it feel in action. I find the mac quite tiring on the ageing eyeballs.

By Jerryfn on 9 Apr 2011

Image quality?

Well it must have some comparison to the mac... how does it rate? Also with the 'eye glaring' contrast ration how does it feel in action. I find the mac quite tiring on the ageing eyeballs.

By Jerryfn on 9 Apr 2011

"I currently have it on my desk, with four USB devices and Ethernet connected to it. I walk up, put my laptop on the desk, turn it on and it just works. All I have to do is plug in one wireless dongle."

I have a docking station on my desk. I walk up, connect the laptop and then I have monitor, wireless keyboard and mouse ready to go. Not sure how much use this 'wireless' monitor is, but I can certainly see the advantages to SimonCorlett's suggestions regarding smartphones.

By grimerking on 12 Apr 2011

Resolution?

Is there a particular reason it's 1920x1080?

With photography I'm always envious of the Apple displays, yet PC's seem to be lagging behind horribly.

By Gogster on 12 Dec 2012

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