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BenQ XL2420T Review
There’s an increasing trend that we’ve been noticing over the past year or so - 3D is coming to everything from phones to televisions to even 3D monitors. BenQ, as a brand has made itself stand strong in the monitor market, not only in India, but also the world over. After focusing on mainstream displays across the price range, BenQ is now focusing on high-quality professional displays and also on displays designed for gamers. The big, recent product that’s making the rounds is BenQ’s XL2420T LED backlit 3D monitor.
Design and Build Quality
The BenQ XL2420T comes in a black design with a dash of red on the stand. The whole unit has a matte finish to it, so fingerprints and reflections aren’t a problem really. Even though it's an LED monitor, it’s not really as thin as your run of the mill monitor, owing to the extended stand. The monitor can be swivelled into portrait mode, which is a plus, as only a handful of products at present have this feature. Rotation, however, is possible only counter clockwise. Also, it’s worth mentioning that you’ll have to put a fair amount of pressure to adjust the height and orientation, according to your need. The XL2420T comes with a remote for controlling the various input modes, along with a scroll wheel and three dedicated buttons to manouvre between them. Let’s have a quick tour.
Along the sides, there are two USB slots and a 3.5mm headphone jack. Connectivity options at the back include a USB port, an HDMI, DVI, D-SUB, and display port. The monitor also connects to the PC using a separate USB port. There’s a hinge and a vertical lever as well, to adjust the height of the monitor, according to the user’s preference. The base in itself is pretty uniquely designed, though it does have a large footprint for a 24-inch monitor. The build quality is pretty impressive, but as compared to the rest of the monitor the display toggle remote seemed to be built of cheaper materials. Overall though, the design and build quality of this 3D gaming monitor is really good. No flimsy materials, no creaky plastics, it’s quite sturdy and firm.
From the back
BenQ have fitted in a 24-inch LED TN panel and it features a 16:9 aspect ratio with a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels. It is NVIDIA 3D Vision 2 ready for your 3D gaming needs. The XL2420T comes with a vertical refresh rate of 120 Hz and a response time of 2ms. The 120HZ refresh rate is pretty useful for 3D gaming as both frames on the screen are rendered in 3D. Slightly smoother while viewing videos, playing games. Power consumption in the ‘switched on’ mode is rated at 24W with less than 0.5W utilization in the power saving mode. This is one of the few gaming monitors to have smart scaling and FPS/ RTS mode as well.
A large footprint
The XL2420T features one of the most intuitive onscreen display controls we’ve seen in a monitor. The modes include Picture Mode, Display Mode, Smart Scaling and an advanced menu. The Picture mode lets you choose from a variety of presets, while the Display Mode lets you change the aspect ratio. There’s Smart scaling included as well that allows you to select your desired aspect ratio and then stretch it to the larger screen. Advanced settings allow you to customize the colour temperature, brightness, contrast, gamma and hue - giving you a good amount of control on how you want to calibrate your display. Three Gamer modes are present as well and can be mapped to be activated via the remote.
The interface design is colourful and straightforward and the lights along the side guide you with moving through the OSD. The Display mode gives different aspect ratios, which come handy. Using the interface via the touch sensitive buttons wasn’t really as responsive as we’d have expected it to be.
We used the Datacolour Spyder 3 Elite to test the BenQ XL2420T. We set it up to calibrate the display by first setting the display to the Standard profile. We noticed that the standard profile had a strange green tinge to it; setting the colour temperatures using RGB values, however fixed this issue. The Spyder 3 calibration that was tested reported white and black levels and we derived a contrast ratio of 538:1 for the display, which is pretty decent considering most notebooks and netbooks have a contrast ratio of under 250:1.
Can be swivelled
In one of our movie test runs, we noticed a slight patching issue. Nothing major, but certainly worth a mention. Colour reproduction was nice, slightly saturated and not very natural. If the user likes bright colours, then they’ll definitely prefer this monitor. Greens seemed a little off in some of our test photos. Overall pictures looked crisp and clear, though. Our test 1080p 60fps video played extremely smooth, with absolutely no stuttering, though there were some fine gradient issues in the grays occasionally.
Range of connectivity options at the back
The next benchmark we ran on the XL2420T was Display Mate. Again, the gray wasn’t as accurate as expected. In our Intensity Range test, we observed that in the dark gray band a slight tinge of brownish green was visible. Black levels were good, but not the best. Primary colours were vibrant, except green, which had a flourescent tinge to it. Magenta looked pinkish. The seam between pink and red and between blue and green was pretty soft, as compared to the other colours. White looked creamish and the seam between the magenta and green looked very pronounced. Moire effect wasn’t visible, but slight flicker could be observed. Rainbow effect wasn’t present on the top or the bottom, but was present on the sides, being more prominent on the right. In our Reverse Video Contrast test, we observed that Yellow was dull in comparison to the other colours. The green was very vibrant, but blue and red appeared natural. Backlighting issues were present towards the bottom of the screen. In our Colour Scales test, there was a slight bit of bleeding noticed in pink and blue. Overall, the monitor provides a good amount of detail, sharpness and has a vivid display, good enough for your gaming needs.
Worth a buy?
The BenQ XL2420T is priced at 21,990 (MOP). As the industry is shifting towards 3D gaming, this monitor is pretty much well covered in all aspects to provide you with a good gaming experience. With the range of connectivity options, it's future proofed as well. The XL2420T is a stylish, 24-inch full-HD 3D display good enough to take care of your gaming needs.