Asus has released these ultra slick looking monitors, and named it Designo. Obviously it piques our interest and finds its way to our labs. We have the MS236 model for review, so let’s not waste any time and get to it.
Design and Features
This is one monitor that breaks all barriers and scales up the path of aesthetic innovation, with a very different concept for the stand. It’s not some regular looking trapezoidal or rectangular blockish piece, rather a thin round strip that is attached via a small screw to the back of the monitor, thus making the frame lean back on the circumference of the strip itself. It does look like some designer piece of art, something out of an FTV runway. It's not without issues though, and the issue is the glossy back front bezel, which spoils the fun as it’s a serious fingerprint magnet. Now fingerprints are something that should be avoided like the plague with such a good looking monitor, it just ruins the class.
The bottom panel has the ASUS logo embossed on the left extremity, while the right end is occupied by a round touch sensitive power button. Also, a row of 6 other control buttons are lined up next to it, all backlit by white LEDs. Speaking of white, the back panel is completely milky white, and bears a glossy finish. Swiveling is not possible due to the stand design itself, but tilting up and down is possible to the extent of 20 degrees. The available inputs are HDMI 1.3 and a VGA, plus a earphone in for use with the HDMI.
The specs are very attractive to look at as well, with a full HD panel measuring 23 inches. The brightness is 250 cd/m2, while dynamic contrast is rated at 50,000:1. Response time is 2 ms, and the panel is assumed to be a TN panel. Viewing angles stated are 170/160 degrees. The monitor comes with a proprietary feature set called SPLENDID. It comprises of presets and settings etc, which we will explore in the next page.
This is one of the few monitors out there that actually look good both externally and perform well: in short we are thoroughly impressed. To start off we check grayscale, probably the only place where we found a chink in the armor in the form of backlight bleed from the sides. The blacks are deep enough; plus there is detail amongst low black bars. Whites are pure and well segregated at high intensities; there is no problem of blooming.
The colors too are so well saturated that watching something like Iron Man 2 trailer was a blast. Theoretically gauging, cyan and pure green are slightly higher, but it has no real impact on the image. We played L4D 2, and here we realized that the motion performance is also “killer”, with very little motion blur problems. Using wares like Word and Excel are a joy due to the superb color registration and well rendered details in minute parts.
The MS236H LCD monitor is priced at Rs. 16,500 which is a tad high, but worth it without a shadow of a doubt. It’s worth it because almost all factors that make a monitor a good buy are satisfied, in some cases exceptionally, like the contrast and colors are really strong here. The looks are svelte and sexy, while motion performance is also very good. The backlight bleeds a bit on sides, and blacks are not jetblack deep, thus I cannot give a perfect score, but 4.5 it is.
Published Date: Dec 24, 2009 10:00 am | Updated Date: Dec 24, 2009 10:00 am