Eizo FlexScan S2110B review
Eizo is no stranger to making high-end TFTs: its 20in L887 reigned supreme on our A List for six months, and that was the replacement model for the L885, which held the crown for a further year.
Following in that tradition, the S2110B is a stunning piece of engineering. The first thing you’ll notice is the richness and brightness of the colours. Eizo uses a snaking backlight tube rather than a standard strip and diffuser method. The upshot is a bright panel with exceptionally even backlighting. In fact, it’s so bright, with a truly brilliant white, we had to turn down the brightness when working for long periods. This means using the touch-sensitive OSD controls. ‘Button’ is too vulgar a word to describe these, especially as there are no buttons, just the relevant word etched on the plastic. Navigating is easy too, despite the slight over-sensitivity of the sensors.
Elsewhere, overdrive technology initially applies extra voltage to the liquid crystals than standard to improve response times. The quoted time of 16ms is measured from black-to-white, but Eizo claims grey-to-grey response times of only 8ms. In testing, we saw the slightest touch of lag, and only when specifically searching for it.
We’ve no complaints with colour handling either – the S2110B simply swept aside every test we threw at it. High-definition video looked superb on the wide-aspect ratio and with viewing angles approaching 180 degrees in both planes, it’s a superb screen for watching video. Games were also richly presented, and all the more immersive for it. This is partially due to the huge contrast range of 1,000:1. Even very dark detail set against pure black is distinguishable, as are almost-white elements on pure white, leaving no loss of detail in shadowy or brightly lit scenes. With this, and the impressively wide colour gamut, only high-end professionals – who might choose the NEC Reference 21 – would be able to find fault with its colour accuracy.
There’s an impressive resolution to help photo editing too. Many 21in widescreen panels are only 1,280 x 768, but this Eizo has 1,680 x 1,050 pixels. Granted, a 20in 4:3 TFT gives you more vertical pixels (1,200), but it’s still a great resolution for just about any activity. Lock the Windows taskbar to the side to list your open applications more intuitively, and still have enough screen space for Word, Excel or Photoshop. Or have two applications running side-by-side to aid comparison or keep an eye on your emails. There’s also 100mm of height travel in the stand and an integrated two-port USB 2 hub. This panel lets you be more flexible about the way you work, and play for that matter.
All this technology is impressive enough, but it’s the price that really stunned us. At £613, it’s significantly cheaper than the 20in L887 and, while there isn’t quite the L887’s comprehensive colour control, it’s more than enough for most people. There’s a five-year warranty and a white version (the S2110W) for TCO 03 compliance. If you’re after a new monitor, and can afford the best, the S2110 is worth every penny.