The Samsung BX2450 is a noteworthy gaming monitor that won’t cost you the sky.
By TAN KIT HOONG
Just a few years ago, buying a nice 24in monitor would have cost you RM2,000 or so for a high-end model, and RM1,000 or more for a low-end or mid-range 24in model.
Today prices have basically halved — RM1,000 or so gets you a top-of-the-line monitor, while paying RM899 gets you an LED backlit 1,920 x 1,080-pixel monitor like the Samsung SyncMaster BX2450 with a fast 2ms response time.
Design and ports
The BX2450 is a very nice-looking monitor — the black frame is contrasted with a bright chrome stand which makes the whole thing look quite nice without being too flashy.
It’s also incredibly thin — where my old CCFL (fluorescent backlit) 24in LCD monitor was nearly 2in thick, the BX2450 is barely an inch thick.
Even the back is nicer than it has to be, with an interestingly textured finish that looks elegant.
Having said that, the chrome-looking stand does feel a little cheap when you actually get your hands on it — it looks like metal but is in fact just plastic and tends to be slightly wobbly due to the light weight.
The back ports are as you’d expect — a standard VGA port together with two HDMI ports. No DVI to speak of, but since HDMI ports are compatible with DVI, you only need to get a cheap converter if you output from your PC to the monitor using DVI.
An unusual feature is the 3.5mm stereo output port — since HDMI can also by default carry an audio signal, the stereo output port acts as a passthrough and allows you to simply connect your speakers or headphones directly to the monitor.
Of course, if you don’t want to use the monitor as a passthrough for audio, you can just change the default audio output to the PC’s 3.5mm stereo port in your Windows settings.
The BX2450 is made for gaming — the 2ms response time means that you won’t get any ghosting when playing games with fast-moving action.
I tried it with a couple of games at full resolution and I have to say the monitor performed really well, with no signs of ghosting.
Colour response and side-to-side viewing angles are very good although being based on TN (twisted nematic) technology, the screen tends to darken quite a bit as you shift your viewing angle up or down.
However, Samsung has a so-called MagicAngle feature to compensate for the darkening of the screen when viewing from extreme vertical angles.
For example, if you tend to lean back and view the monitor from a really low angle, you can set MagicAngle so that the screen looks best from this angle.
There are four settings to choose from, depending on your viewing angle and it really does help for situations where you monitor is not placed at eye level.
Apart from the usual contrast and brightness settings, there are a number of automatic modes, such as a PC/AV mode which switches the contrast setting for more comfortable PC use or higher for more punchy video viewing.
Talking about settings, the adjustment buttons on the BX2450 are actually soft touch buttons — you just lightly touch the edge of the monitor frame underneath the corresponding label to make the adustment.
While this certainly looks cool I found myself accidentally activating the menu or turning off the monitor when I was shifting the monitor.
The problem is that the settings are in the bottom right hand corner of the frame, which is the place you will most likely get a hold of when picking up the monitor or shifting it.
Overall, the Samsung SyncMaster BX2450 is a good general purpose monitor — it looks good and works well for gaming.
The colour shifts due to the TN panel technology means that it won’t be particularly good for critical professional photo-editing, but then again, if you want that, Samsung has a higher-end model for this purpose.
Pros: Nice design; good colour; fast response time; very thin and light.
Cons: Stand feels a little plasticky; button placement could be better.
LED LCD monitor
Display: 24in with LED backlight
Resolution: 1080p (1,920 x 1,080-pixels)
Response time: 2ms
Contrast ratio: 1,000:1 (actual)
Ports: Two HDMI ports, one VGA, 3.5mm stereo audio output
Dimensions (w x d x h): 57 x 20 x 35cm
Review unit courtesy of Samsung Malaysia Electronics Sdn Bhd, 1-800-88-9999