- Review Price: £199.99
One thing edge LED-backlighting does guarantee is slimness, and the E2472HD is no exception, with a width of just 2cm at its edges widening to 3cm at its back. Admittedly this isn’t quite as svelte as the 1.5cm V2220, but then we’re dealing with a significantly larger display here, and it still looks incredibly slim (thanks in part to its tiny external power supply). It also weighs very little and is easy to carry around one-handed.
We experienced a little unexpected difficulty with assembly, which we hope is unique to our sample: the thumb-ring screw that secures the weighted base to the rest of the monitor was impossible to tighten by hand. Worst case scenario this only requires a flat-head screwdriver though, so it’s no big deal. Aside from this niggle, build quality is great for a budget display, with strong plastics and nary a hint of creak.
Once assembled, the E2472HD definitely looks the part too. Its all-glossy finish inevitably attracts fingerprints and shows off dust, but with a bit of maintenance it remains attractive and contrasts nicely with the textured, slightly curved matt back. There are no unsightly vents, insets or buttons to break its clean lines, either, and its narrow bezel (1.7cm except for the broader base) emphasizes its slender impression.
Connectivity is quite good, with VGA, DVI and HDMI video inputs, and a 3.5mm output for HDMI audio. The latter is often lacking even on premium monitors, though as the E2472HD doesn’t have speakers of its own (something to be thankful for, as in a display this thin they would almost undoubtedly be rubbish) its exclusion would have been odd. These connections face out from a very slight recess, making them supremely easy to hook-up, but they do upset the screen’s minimal profile somewhat.
As expected of a TN-based monitor at the E2472HD’s sub-£200 price point, ergonomic adjustments are minimal with only 20 degrees of tilt on the menu, though thanks to its smooth rubber feet Iiyama’s latest swivels quite easily despite there being no mechanism for it.
Back to the monitor’s front, as already mentioned there are no buttons: all its controls are touch sensitive and denoted by clear if subtle white icons. It’s a pity there’s no backlighting for these, though at least the power ‘button’ is easy to find due to its proximity to the monitor’s unobtrusive blue power LED. Thankfully there are no annoying activation noises to spoil the experience either.
Iiyama has kept the controls fairly sensible, though ‘Auto’ (to correct analogue degradation) still gets its own dedicated button. Aside from this there’s Enter, which calls up the OSD and confirms options in it; Exit, which acts as a back button or, as its secondary function, offers quick access to the monitor’s OptiColor presets; and left and right, with the former doubling as an Eco-mode switch while the latter doubles as a brightness control shortcut.
Compared to the colourful efforts of some competitors, Iiyama’s OSD is uninspiring yet functional, with most options easy to find and adjust. All the basics are present down to individual colour fine-tuning. The only confusing design choice is that all the advanced settings are found under Miscellaneous, thrown in with the Info and Factory Reset options you’d expect there. Advanced settings include sharpness adjustment in 20 per cent increments, dynamic contrast (here called ACR) on/off, and overdrive (OD) on/off.
There are five available presets: Standard, Office, Movie, Game and Scenery (i.e. photo). Most of these seem to be configured to at least prioritise their named usage, though as usual all of them are far too bright (Office, sensibly, being the least retina-searing choice). Thankfully these presets can be adjusted, and though only Standard allows you to make the full range of adjustments possible, we found all of them quite usable after minimal tweaking.
Of course the meat and potatoes of any monitor is its image quality, where typically a TN-based display such as this can’t hope to compete with monitors using IPS (like the Dell UltraSharp U2410) or PVA (such as the Samsung SyncMaster F2080) panels.
This is immediately apparent with the E2472HD, which suffers from the usual TN bugbear of being unable to display crisp whites and the darkest shades of the greyscale simultaneously. In fact, no amount of tweaking allowed it to differentiate between the subtlest dark tones, making a mockery of the display’s ludicrous 5,000,000:1 dynamic contrast ratio and meaning you’ll inevitably miss out on some subtle black detailing in films and games.
Thanks to very strong contrast shift on vertical viewing angles you have to sit at just the right height (or tilt the monitor at just the right angle) to prevent colours looking decidedly washed out. Speaking of colours, we also noticed obvious banding across green gradations.
However, with these negatives out of the way there’s plenty to like too. Having just mentioned the E2472HD’s inferior vertical viewing angles, its excellent horizontal viewing performance comes as something of a surprise. As you would hope with an LED-backlit display, there’s no sign of light bleed and backlighting proved very even.
Sharpness was also excellent, making small fonts legible and bringing out plenty of detail in high definition video, despite the aforementioned flaws and some slight dithering noise. Of course, with its native 1,920 x 1,080 resolution and HDMI input the E2472HD handles Full HD video and console gaming just fine, and offers aspect ratio controls for lower resolution sources.
After calibration colours were fairly realistic, and though they always retained a slightly muted quality, at least this means you won’t be suffering from common problems like oversaturated skin tones. The E2472HD’s 2ms quoted response time doesn’t seem too far off either, as there was barely any sign of ghosting.
Aside from the slimness LED-backlighting affords, another significant advantage is lower power usage. The E2472HD consistently consumed under 23W on the high-brightness Movie preset (comfortably beating even the 23in Samsung EcoFit SyncMaster P2370) – and activating Iiyama’s aforementioned Eco mode pushed this down to an even more frugal 14W maximum! Obviously this did result in a significant drop in colour vividness and contrast, but the dark trailer we were playing was certainly still watchable and for office use this is hardly a disadvantage.
Finally we get to value, where the E2472HD will come with an MSRP of £199.99 when it hits stores towards the end of June. This is pretty much in line with many 24in Full HD displays, and actually on the cheap side for a triple-input LED-backlit one.
Unfortunately for this Iiyama and every other £200-odd TN-based monitor out there, that’s currently also the price of the Award-winning Samsung SyncMaster F2080‘s bigger 23in Full HD sibling, the F2380. It offers a cPVA panel with superior colour accuracy, viewing angles and contrast, not to mention full ergonomic adjustments (including height, tilt, swivel and pivot), making anything less a particularly difficult sell.
Iiyama’s new LED-backlit E2472HD is a decent-looking, slim, well-built and fairly well-featured monitor, and the most frugal 24in display we’ve come across. It can’t quite match similarly priced alternatives for either image quality or flexibility, which puts a dent in its otherwise decent credentials, but it’s bound to become more attractive as its price comes down.
Score in detail
Image Quality 6
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