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I don't have a dual monitor setup at home, and I thought it unlikely I ever would. Not because I don't want one, mind you, because I really do. The three main factors holding me back are cost, lack of space, and power consumption. However, Samsung has come up with a quirky alternative that is aimed at businesses, but may also be perfect for individuals with specific requirements.
The SyncMaster 2263DX actually consists of two monitors. One is a fairly standard 22in model with built in webcam, speakers and dual array microphone, which is essentially the SyncMaster 2263UW. The other is a little 7in unit, which connects to its larger sibling and your PC via USB using DisplayLink technology. This diminutive screen is mounted on an adjustable arm that can position it pretty much anywhere - including suspended above or beside the main screen. Though this is sold under the 2263DX name, this dinky display does have its own name; the rather snappy UbiSync 7. So do the 2263UW and UbiSync 7 work together in a genuinely useful way or is this package just an interesting gimmick?
Starting off with the main display, we have what initially looks like a fairly ordinary, albeit rather attractive 1,680 x 1,050 22incher. Assembly is certainly easier than the ball hinge in SyncMaster Pebble range. You simply attach the stand to the base, and the whole lot slots into the screen. At the monitor's back you'll find the large, rotatable and extendible arm that the UbiSync 7 effortlessly slots into.
The main monitor comes with D-Sub, DVI and HDMI ports and everything you need in terms of cabling, though no extras are included apart from a cleaning cloth. You get the usual VGA and DVI cables, an A-B USB 2.0 cable and a proprietary L-shaped mini-USB to twin USB cable for the 7in unit. Though no HDMI cable is provided, I'm happy enough that the monitor has two digital connections, despite supposedly being targeted towards a business environment.
As you'll probably have gathered from the included cleaning cloth, Samsung doesn't break its habit of giving its monitors mirror-shine finishes. Both screens are all-black, which we think works better than the hint of red seen in SyncMaster T200 monitor. That's not to say we don't like this dab of colour on all displays - in fact, we think it's stunning on the company's televisions, like the Samsung LE32A656 32in. It's just that it doesn't have the same impact on smaller desktop monitors.
The screen's bezel is thicker than on most models, probably due to the extra circuitry for its video abilities, but it's still a marked improvement on the large footprint of Samsung's previous SyncMaster 225uw 22in LCD. Unfortunately, it has something else in common with this display - slightly dubious build quality, highlighted by the creaking during tilt adjustment (the only adjustment at your disposal by the way). This model also has a 3.0-megapixel webcam, although it eschews the up and down adjustabitliy seen in the SyncMaster 225uw. The webcam is not as attractive either, being set in a small matte surround that breaks the monitor's clean lines.
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