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Samsung SyncMaster 245T - Samsung SyncMaster 245T

Having teased with you all this info, it's about time we get onto the important topic of image quality and performance. As already noted, the 245T unsurprisingly uses one of Samsung's own S-PVA panels. Traditionally S-PVA panels are seen as a good compromise between the faster response times and reactivity of TN panels and the colour accuracy or IPS based monitors, which makes them uniquely versatile. They also have good viewing angles, with this example quoted at 178 degrees horizontally and vertically - a figure borne out by our experiences.

This particular panel sports a 1,000:1 contrast ratio, which is boosted to 1,500:1 when using the dynamic backlight. A grey-to-grey response time of 6ms is pretty solid and though the 300cd/m2 brightness may sound somewhat conservative by today's standards, in reality it's more than adequate. What certainly isn't conservative is the claim about colour gamut coverage, with the 245T capable of reproducing 97 per cent of the NTSC colour space. This puts it in unique territory, with the 'High Colour' Dell 2407WFP-HC achieving only 92 per cent - though to say "only 92 per cent" is a tad unfair given the previous state of things.

In any case, it's an impressive asset and one that probably accounts for the notably higher price of the 245T when compared to both Dell's offering and the likes of the BenQ FP241W and its derivatives. Another factor in this regard is the presence of Samsung's Motion Picture Acceleration (MPA) technology, which is meant to help reduce the afterglow and ghosting that's inherent in even the quickest LCD monitors. Indeed, it's meant to do much the same thing as BenQ's Black Frame Insertion method, though unlike BenQ's solution Samsung's technology increases the frame rate by using interpolated images whereas BenQ's BFI method essentially tricks the eye by the insertion of black frames.

We'll get onto to the performance of this feature later on but first let's take a closer look at the general performance of the 245T, where it's less a question of whether it is good but rather how good it actually is. Getting started with the monitor it's clear our sample has arrived with us properly calibrated, with nice balanced colour tones and none of the fluorescent reds that normally indicate a lack of calibration. As ever it's impossible to say how indicative this is of retail versions, so it's always worth researching other users experiences with models bought at retail.

While performing everyday tasks the purity and vibrancy of the colours is quite apparent, as is the clean white level and sharpness of the text and before we even began testing it was clear the Samsung was going to be a good performer. DisplayMate was our first port of call, and on the whole the 245T put in a near flawless performance. Transitions in the Dark-Grey Scale and White-Level Saturation tests were spot on, with the 245T managing to produce even the most challenging shades to near perfection. This was also the case with the Colour Scales, with a perfect drop off at the bottom end of the scale and perfect transitions all the way along.

There was also no evidence of any banding on the intensity scale, which is an area where some Dell monitors reputedly struggle. However, the Screen Uniformity tests did reveal a slightly uneven backlight, with the left fifth of the panel proving to be lighter than the rest of screen. This was a source of some consternation given the otherwise superlative performance, though how much this will affect general use is difficult to gauge.

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