Samsung SyncMaster PX2370 - Design, Controls, OSD and Energy Efficiency



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As we’ve come to expect from Samsung, the PX2370’s aesthetics are arresting – and we mean that in a good way. There’s no ‘touch of color’ here, but most will likely prefer the monochrome scheme of this model: we certainly do. Its even-sized black bezel is fetchingly set off by a deep transparent surround, an effect repeated in the stand and semi-transparent smoked black base.

Though there’s quite a bit of glossy black plastic, it’s more resistant to fingerprints than any such finish we’ve come across recently, and you can avoid touching it altogether thanks to the thick transparent edge. Overall, this monitor is very slim (26.5mm at its thickest point), and its design is cohesive and eye-catching. Indeed, we prefer its angular body to Samsung’s previous, generally curvier efforts.

At the bottom of the bezel resides the power switch, highlighted by a faint white curved LED strip and a chrome outer edge. Though it looks like a physical button, the switch is actually activated by touch, and is very sensitive.

The PX2370’s controls, on the other hand, are actually physical buttons, hidden away behind the right-hand side of the bezel with identifying icons on the monitor’s extremely slim side. These buttons would have worked a lot better if the VGA-sync button (which incidentally lacks any secondary function) had been moved away from the OSD controls. Unfortunately this is not the case, and since all five buttons are the same shape and size, it’s easy to get confused. However, starting at the top they lie naturally under your four main fingers and offer positive feedback, though the monitor does tend to wobble a little when pressing them.

Shortcuts include brightness control, MagicBright presets (Custom, Standard, Game, Cinema and Dynamic Contrast) and input selection. Unfortunately we found input switching – whether manual or automatic – to be frustratingly slow, but that’s only an issue if you’re part of the minority that switch inputs regularly.

Anyone familiar with the OSD on a recent Samsung display won’t find any surprises here. Despite only using three colours it’s attractive, with informative icons and a logical layout. All the usual options are on hand, though there are a few Samsung-exclusive ‘Magic’ additions which are only found on its high-end TN-based monitors (we realise that’s an oxymoron).

(centre)The monitor’s power brick is as slim as the screen.(/centre)

The most controversial of these is probably Magic Angle, a set of specially adjusted ‘view angle’ presets which alter picture characteristics to compensate for TN technology’s inherently poor viewing angle performance. While it’s nice to have if you usually sit in the same orientation to your display, it wouldn’t be necessary to begin with if a superior panel technology was used.

Magic Lux and Magic Eco, on the other hand, would make genuine enhancements for any monitor. The former controls the PX2370’s ambient light sensor that automatically adjusts backlight brightness depending on the amount of ambient light, while the latter lowers backlight brightness to permanent maximums, making an already frugal monitor (thanks to its LED backlighting) even more energy efficient. In fact, after calibration the PX2370 stayed below 19W, and activating the lowest Magic Eco setting of three brought this down to an impressive 12W average.