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10/10

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Samsung SyncMaster 244T

Back in May 2005, Benny reviewed the Dell 2405FPW 24in monitor and has been lusting after it ever since. Not only was the Dell a great monitor with a killer 1,920 x 1,200 resolution, but it also had a price as unstable as nitro-glycerine. When Benny reviewed the Dell it was listed at £860, but that price jumped up to £1,200 a few days later, but then dropped down to a staggering £603 a few weeks after that. Recently though, the price seems to have settled down and Dell is currently selling this screen for £942.35. It’s probably a good thing that the price of the Dell 2405FPW has finally stabilised, since it now has some serious competition.

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Like the Dell, the Samsung SyncMaster 244T is a high-specification TFT monitor with a 24in widescreen panel, and also like the Dell, it sports a 1,920 x 1,200 resolution. However, the Samsung uses a newer panel than the Dell and manages a response time of 6ms, compared to the 16ms seen on the Dell. That said, Dell has announced a new 24in display in Japan which sports a 6ms response time – I’m assuming it will use the same panel as this Samsung.

As well as having a lower response time, this new Samsung has one vitally important feature that the Dell didn’t have – HDCP support. Yes, the DVI port on the Samsung 244T is HDCP compliant, so you’ll have no problem playing back HDCP protected HD-DVD or Blu-ray discs. It also means that protected video under Windows Vista won’t be a problem either, since that will also require HDCP support. Of course we still haven’t got HDCP compliant graphics cards, but considering that a good monitor – especially one this size – should last you a long time, the HDCP inclusion should give you some real peace of mind.

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Despite the 244T sporting a 6ms response time, Samsung hasn’t degraded the image quality by using a 6-bit panel. Many of the low response time monitors available employ 6-bit panels to help achieve the faster switching, but the 244T uses an 8-bit panel, so it can produce the full 16.7 million True Colour gamut. Considering that a high resolution screen like this is ideal for image editing, the last thing you would want is a reduced bit depth, but the fact that Samsung has still achieved a very low response time means that the 244T is great for games and movies too. Of course the 6ms rating is a grey to grey measurement rather than off-on-off, but to be fair, pretty much every manufacturer quotes grey to grey times these days.

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