TValue for money:
Also consider: he world might not be buying as many personal computers as it used to, but there is still a roaring demand for screens to connect to all the gadgets that have replaced conventional PCs. The humble computer monitor is now a multi-purpose device used for everything from word-processing to watching live news and it’s not uncommon for there to be two on every desk in a modern office.
Despite being about as commoditised as products get, there’s an interesting pocket that’s developed between the high-definition LCD displays we’ve come to know and love, and the new, ‘ultra-high definition’ 4K products that we’re currently being told we need. Inbetween is an iteration of existing technology that isn’t quite cutting-edge, but offers a vast improvement nonetheless – and is attainable at reasonable prices. All that is a fancy way of saying that if you’re in the market for a new computer monitor, you can get something pretty spectacular without breaking the bank.
We’ve been testing one of Philips’s l a t e s t monitor s that offer the very best of the current high-definition g e ner a t i on, a nd I’d be hard pressed to recommend something better – whether you’re watching a movie, playing games or motoring through spreadsheets.
The 21.5” monitor in question makes use of ‘AH IPS’ technology that really pushes the limits of what’s possible on existing standards. IPS, or in-plane switching, is a relatively old screen technology that extends what’s possible with liquid-crystal displays but wasn’t commercially viable until recently. It improves the viewing angle of monitors, consumes less power and enables higher image quality with more brightness than conventional LCD screens.
Philips has packaged all this in a 16:9 screen that matches the resolution considered perfect by modern f ilmmakers. The unit we tested is lightweight, very easy to set up and worked out of the box connected to my MacBook and without any of the tweaking and fiddling that most screens require.
There is little to criticise on this product. Colours look really good, contrast is spectacular and the screen is a near-perfect size. The only thing missing is an HDMI port, which is unusual for a modern monitor, but easy to work around.
If you’re looking for a new computer monitor, you can’t do much better than this. The next generation of 4K monitors is still priced outside the realms of reason and it ’ l l be some time before mainstream products are within reach. Until then, IPS monitors like this are king of the hill and Philips has some of the best available.
Competition: LG-MP76 IPS monitor