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AG Neovo has always been a design led company. Most recently we saw this in the effortlessly stylish V10 Digital Photo Frame, which certainly set a design benchmark for all other photo frames. However, the company is nominally known for its LCD monitors and today we're looking at its latest 22in offering, the style orientated E-W22.
On first inspection AG Neovo's reputation for design remains intact, because the E-W22 is a very classy looking monitor. The panel is surrounded by a jet black bezel, which is set behind an optical glass panel that lends the E-W22 a sense of quality not often afforded to PC monitors. As well providing a level of visual refinement the glass panel, known as "NeoV Optical Glass", acts rather like the high contrast glossy finishes you see on many LCD monitors, boosting the black levels and giving colours a warmer tone. In this instance it also provides some protection for the LCD panel, which is no bad thing considering how fragile LCD panels are.
Of course, one predictable drawback of the glass panel is some reflectivity, though this is kept to a minimum thanks to an anti-glare layer. It doesn't eliminate all problems, but it does a good enough job that you won't be constantly distracted and annoyed. Less forgiving, however, is the penchant for picking up fingerprints and dust, which is pretty much unavoidable - child friendly it is not.
As with many widescreen monitors, the E-W22 has a set of built-in stereo speakers, whose quality isn't especially inspiring. They'll do well enough for very casual music listening and Windows' various chimes, but for anything else they're woefully underpowered and lack any real bass at all. At the very least, however, these speakers don't upset the aesthetic appeal greatly, with the charcoal grey grille providing a nice contrast to the rest of the display.
Aesthetically then, the E-W22 is a success and it should prove ideal for those who want something living room friendly. However, there are elements of the design that don't appeal. Compared to even fairly basic monitors the adjustability of the E-W22 is below par. There's no height adjustment, no rotation and no pivot, just 30 degrees of tilt to play with.
The lack of height adjustment is particularly disappointing; especially since the default stand position has the monitor sitting at more or less at desk level. This isn't a terrible viewing position, but it would be preferable to have a good deal more control over the ergonomics. VESA compliant wall and arm mounting does alleviate this annoyance slightly, but overall the E-W22's design is a case of style over substance.