Samsung 215tw?

SockMan!

2[H]4U
Joined
Jul 31, 2004
Messages
2,187
Hello all,

I searched the forums, but I haven't heard much talk about the Samsung 215TW. Anyone have this monitor? If so, could you post your experience with it?

I want it mostly for a good all-around monitor for the home, so it should be good for gaming (including FPSes like UT2004), movies played through the PC (DVD quality; I won't be jumping on the high-def bandwagon for a good long while), general office/web browsing tasks, and occasional PS2 gaming through component or s-video. I'm not a photoshop guru, but decent out-of-box color accuracy is a plus. I'm not too concerned about viewing angles since I'll be the only one using the monitor and I'll be right in front of it (I've grown accustomed to TN panels like my cheap non-widescreen 19" Acer).

Some specifics that I'd like to know:

  • Ghosting and input lag
  • Video inputs and 4:3. I'd like to hook up my PS2 to it, so I'd like to know if it'll display properly. From what I've read, some monitors don't display (and don't have options for displaying) 4:3 video correctly without distortion.
  • Any presence of backlight noise? My Acer makes a buzzing noise that I'm guessing to be the backlight. It only does when the brightness is set at less than 100%. Needless to say, this is very annoying in a quiet room.
I'm currently weighing my options, including 24" panels. However, I don't think I'd want a 24" just yet otherwise I'll have to buy a more powerful videocard for games like Oblivion. Maybe in a few years...
 

worship

n00b
Joined
Oct 20, 2007
Messages
1
Hi,

I have this monitor since the spring and I am very satisfied with it.

I use it mostly for browsing web, text editing (programming) and movies. Occasionally for games too.

Picture quality:
Previous monitor I owned was Samsung 172x. After purchasing 215TW I tried dual monitor setup and I was positively surprised how good the 215TW picture looked compared to 172x. I couldn't stand the ugly picture of 172x next to 215TW so I use it now in single monitor setup. Which is actually enough for me.
The picture is completely static, no "flickering" on grey backgrounds (like it was with 172x).
I can't comment on how realistic or lifelike the color reproduction is since I'm not much of a graphics artist/photograph. I almost always use one of the color presets, "Internet" and I'm satisfied with the colors it produces.
The viewing angles are great (even though you don't care) - no apparent color or tone change at ~5 degree angle (from the side, at <5 degree angle you couln't see anything anyway).

On input-lag:
Before purchasing this monitor I was aware of the possible input-lag problem.
At the first two hours of usage the input lag was VERY apparent and I was a bit scared.
Also when trying out the dual monitor setup I moved around the window between both of the monitors and I though OMFG THIS CANT BE REAL?!?. However by the evening I didn't even notice. Soon after I played through S.T.A.L.K.E.R. with the hardest difficulty (and then Nexuiz, Quake 3, UT2k4) and input lag didn't seem to be the problem at all.
I played them offline so I can't comment on how it would affect online playing.

Ghosting:
What ghosting?

4:3 scaling:
It is done automatically but you can force switching between wide<->4:3 through OSD.
Scaling is done so that picture height is scaled to full height of the monitor (1050 pixels) and then width according to ratio. So there will be black bands on the sides of the picture but not on top and bottom.

Backlight leaking/noise:
I sometimes have backlight leaking in every four cornes but it's apparent only with black screen and higher brightness.
And there is some noise when you put your ear close to monitor.

The most annoying part of the monitor is the blue power led that sometimes distracts me when watching moves fullscreen and from distance.

Other than that I really like the elegant and minimalistic/non-flashy design of the monitor.

I hope this helps you.
 

SockMan!

2[H]4U
Joined
Jul 31, 2004
Messages
2,187
Thanks for the reply!

I think that i'll prioritize gaming over everything else, so in that regard, I'll probably look at alternatives considering the input lag that you and several others reported to have had. I'm not very sensitive to ghosting (my old 17" Hitachi with 16ms advertised response seems okay to me), but the input lag may bother me in 'twitch' games like UT2004.
 

FarmDog

n00b
Joined
Oct 29, 2007
Messages
38
First post to HardForum. It has taken a month of reading to get up to speed and every time I think I have the answer there is something else that makes me doubt. These LCD's have got to be the most frustrating purchase I've ever researched. I have a dying Viewsonic P90f 19" aperture grille CRT (have to beat it on the side couple times a day or it goes dim) that has great colors and video abilities but blurry text. I have placed text legibility at the top of the list, color accuracy second for editing photo's, watching low-res (hi-8, I hear the laughter) camcorder video (highres expected in the future) and currently no gaming, but might want some racing games in the future.

I too am leaning toward the 215TW mainly due to rebate (too expensive otherwise) and its reported color and picture clarity. Started out thinking less than $300 now I'm thinking less than $400.
Read some great reviews here:
http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/2006/07/07/samsung_syncmaster_215tw/1

http://www.neoseeker.com/resourcelink.html?rid=131337

http://www.trustedreviews.com/displays/review/2006/06/26/Samsung-SyncMaster-215TW-21in-Monitor/p1

http://icrontic.com/articles/samsung_syncmaster_215tw_lcd_review

Then I saw this link in another thread and started my doubts again:
Have a look at the text on the 215TW vs. the Sam 226BW, or the DELL 2007wfp or Sam 971P and Viewsonic vx2025wm.
http://www.digitalversus.com/duels.php?ty=6&ma1=36&mo1=224&p1=2104&ma2=36&mo2=104&p2=1040&ph=2


QUESTION - Guess my question for anyone with experience with the 215TW, is text a problem or is it a firmware upgrade situation?


My list currently includes....
Sam 215TW
Dell 2007wfp
Gateway fpd2275w
Sam 226BW
I like the idea of S-Video inputs and the 1:1 pixel mapping on Dell and Gateway, don't like Dells price and the uncertainty if I get bad pixels what would happen however and that is a hold back on the Dell.
Also include lower on the list:
SAM 206BW
Sam 971P

Seems like the 24" have everything I want but not sure I want that much screen in front of me for normal computing.
 

jcmuse

Limp Gawd
Joined
Feb 10, 2006
Messages
329
I have had the 215tw for like 1.5 years. i do a lot of gaming/movie watching. I came from a nice CRT.
For gaming: i would get something with lower response time. It is kind of slow for fast paced games like quake 3.. i could never get used to it.

for just text/movie watching: i don't notice any abnormal input lag. PQ is quite good as is colors. No it isn't as good as a CRT.

Also thumbs up for samsung -- had to rma my monitor (my fault) and service was really good.
 
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