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Dell UltraSharp 2408WFP Widescreen 24in LCD Monitor
For the advanced computer user, 24in monitors are probably the sweet spot right now, offering the ideal combination of price, resolution and desk space. WUXGA (1,920 x 1,200) resolutions are only just making their way into panel sizes below 23in (at least in desktop monitors; laptops like the Alienware Area51 m15x offer them below 17in), with most 22in monitors still only offering 1,680 x 1,050. The advantages of the higher resolution are not only that it gives you more working area, but it's also ideal for displaying full HD (1080p) content.
Going above 24in, the dot pitch also goes up, meaning your images are no longer as sharp. Meanwhile, adjustability goes down, with only rare cases offering pivot or even height adjustment. Of course, taking things to the next level, you could go for a 30in screen, but these severely tax both your wallet and your graphics card, and use up to twice as much electricity.
The 24in market itself can be roughly divided up into two segments: on the one hand we have the cheap and cheerful displays such as the BenQ G2400W, usually sporting TN panels, minimal inputs and almost no adjustability; on the other are more expensive monitors that use higher quality panels (sPVA/MVA or IPS) featuring potentially more accurate colours and better viewing angles. These usually offer the full range of ergonomic adjustments, and multiple inputs including USB, component and HDMI. An example of this type is the Samsung SyncMaster 245T.
While the former are adequate for ‘normal' use and PC gaming, if you require colour accuracy, flexibility or the ability to hook up multiple consoles (especially the Wii, which needs component for the best quality), the latter segment will be for you. And in that case keep reading, because - on paper at least - Dell's latest 2408WFP fulfils all these criteria and more.
In terms of physical design, anyone who is familiar with the previous 2407 will find themselves in well-known territory. But that's by no means a bad thing, as the 2407 was among the better 24in designs of 2007. Of course, Dell has significantly updated some of its monitors' looks with the UltraSharp 2707WFP, but personally, I'm glad the company kept the matte black bezel and sleek silver foot for its flagship 24incher. It's one of those timeless looks that's serious and attractive at the same time, and if it isn't broke, why fix it?