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In this case the 6-bit XP17 made the skin tones in the musicians fingering arm look a little artificial (greens and pinks were noticeable), whereas the 8-bit monitor looked more natural. Before I continue, I should also say that this is quite a sensitive test and will probably only really concern those looking for an image editing monitor. For gamers after a monitor with a fast response time, this is probably not so important.
As for the rest of the DisplayMate tests, there’s virtually no banding but there’s some slight compression in the highlight ends of the greyscales. Nothing too drastic though. Indeed, the XP17 is a relatively high contrast and high brightness monitor which can lead to harsh highlights, but considering the XP17 is marketed as a gaming monitor, more light for those dark games will most likely be appreciated by its intended users.
Any comment from me on motion smearing in games and movies? Nah. You know me. I couldn’t notice any. However, I did notice that the XP17 has relatively narrow viewing angles and a distinct colour shift when you move your line of sight up and down from centre.
Finally a word on price. At just under £400 it’s very high for a 17in LCD, but Shuttle has clearly spent time designing and developing the 8ms XP17 TempAR which inevitably means it has to recoup the costs. Personally, I’d spend the cash on a larger monitor that can handle colours with more finesse. That’s me though, but if you want a stylish, tough, and portable gaming display to match your Shuttle SFF there’s little else out there.
A pricey yet rugged 17in LCD where design has been to taken to a refreshingly new level by focusing on the travelling gamer and Shuttle XPC owner.
Update: Shuttle has informed us that the TempAR (anti-refective) version of the XP17 is no longer for sale. It said that its first TFT, with a 16ms response time, featured an anti-glare glass panel (AG.) For its 8ms model, the plan was to release a model with the anti-reflective coating (AR.) However, based on user feedback it opted to release the 8ms model with an AG coating after all; the technical specs of the display are otherwise the same.