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Today at HotHardware we look at one of the latest additions to the 22" LCD monitor market segment, the Samsung SyncMaster 2243BW Wide Screen LCD.  While the Samsung 2243BW may be aimed at business use, its specifications suggest that it should be capable of quite a bit more than just spreadsheets and word documents. With good viewing angles, a decent 5ms response time, good brightness and an excellent 1000:1 static contrast ratio, the 2243BW should be well equipped to handle any multimedia thrown its way. The 2243BW is actually has slightly better specifications than the wildly popular Samsung 226BW, which is one of the most widely and highly recommended 22" monitors.  Click the link below and check it out...

Samsung SyncMaster 2243BW 22" Wide Screen LCD



 Thanks for the review.  I think you'd want to point out that almost every single 22" monitor, regardless of manufacturer, uses a TN type display.  It means that the horizontal viewing angle is OK, but the vertical viewing angle is HORRIBLE, very narrow indeed.  The spec they report, 160°, I believe, may represent the point at which text is legible, but color is badly washed out by the time your eye is 30° above horizontal.  Conversely, color becomes progressively more saturated as your eye drops below the horizontal plane that's perpendicular to the display.  This effect is SO PRONOUNCED in 22" monitors that there is a very noticable difference in color saturation between the top and the bottom of the screen.  If your eye is in the middle, you're looking up perhaps 5-10° to see the top and down 5-10° at the bottom.  The same blue in the title bar of a window and the Task Bar will appear sky blue at the bottom of the screen and royal blue at the top.  This is the effect you noticed in your "orange-screen" test.  Go back and use any solid color, and the difference in its saturation between the top and the bottom of the screen, regardless of viewing angle, will knock your socks off unless you're farther away that normal.  These 22" monitors, none of which use true 8-bit color by the way, are therefore UNacceptable for color-critical tasks like Photoshop.  They work very well, though, for gaming and office tasks.

Don't get the idea that I dislike them.  Right now, I'm sitting in front of two of them, one by Chimei and one by Westinghouse.  They're great for nonprofessional use, but I've found it necessary to tilt them away from vertical about 5° to lessen the very noticable difference in color saturation between the top and the bottom of the screen.  A person standing behind the user, watching a game, for example, will find it impossible to see anything.  The only way he can view what's going on is to sit in order to get his viewing angle fairly close to 0°.  I'm not a perfectionist, but the problem with vertical viewing angles on these inexpensive 22" monitors is significant enough that I hope to retire mine in favor of 24" models if the price of the latter ever drops enough to make them affordable for desktop use.

You bring up some excellent points. Usually one of the first specs I look at is viewing angle. If it isn't 178° then I assume it is going to be quite poor. With my current monitor the viewing angle is atrocious. There is essentially no angle outside of 0° that doesn't result in horrendous viewing. Another downside to 22" monitors is the resolution. If you are a gamer or want to watch a Blu-Ray you won't be able to take advantage of the higher resolution they afford.
Hey milleron,

Thanks for the feedback. I know what you are talking about. I am aware that pretty much every 22" monitor currently on the market uses a TN panel but I was unwilling to state that as a fact because as far as I know, there could be some special-interest manufacturer serving some niche somewhere that has a 22" monitor using a different panel tech (however unlikely). I suppose I should have been more critical of the fact that the monitor isn't well suited for applications where color accuracy is mission critical. I'll keep that in mind for future articles. While writing this piece, the audience I had in mind was office users, gamers and multimedia types. My mistake for not thinking more about the graphics and publishing professionals out there, although that demographic generally wouldn't be looking at a 22" anyway since, as you mentioned, they don't typically have true 8-bit color processing.

I've had this monitor in the lab for a couple weeks now and the entire time I've had it side-by-side with a Dell 2407WFP (non-HC). I know the 2407WFP isn't exactly the epitome of color accuracy, but it's a pretty decent screen. Anyway, the 2243BW wasn't horrible in comparison. The viewing angles on the Samsung were alright, although the color accuracy did roll off rather quickly if you went too far off-center, as you stated. Regarding color saturation and viewing angles, I didn't find the issue to be particularly noticeable on the Samsung, although I certainly noticed it with a solid orange fill. However blue, red and green solid fills looked perfectly fine on the Samsung. In the end, I still stand by my conclusion that it is a good monitor for office tasks and multimedia.


 Very true milleron

My Acer AL2016W has that issue, it might be a 20" widescreen, but the viewing angle is so poor that I actually have viewing issues on the top at virtually every angle! El cheapo monitor, but with it as bad as it is it should not have left the labs.


I wish I knew more about flat screens I'm still using a CRT because I game and do some graphics editing. I don't like the trade offs, what would be a good flat screen to get with a very low response no bleeding and good viewing angles I'd say 20-24 inch.