Iiyama ProLite X436S review

Price when reviewed

It may be strictly minimalist in appearance, but the Iiyama X436S has some impressive technical specifications. The 8ms quoted response time is eye-catching, as is the quoted contrast ratio of 700:1. A number of interesting features make the X436S desirable, such as a light-sensitive diode that can change the brightness of the panel depending on the ambient light, as well as a motion sensor that can be set to shut the panel down after a period of activity. There’s also a built-in USB hub, as well as a pair of integrated, if rather lucklustre, 2W speakers.

In our demanding series of tests, we had no argument with the response time – this panel is up for a fight with the 6ms Acer AL1951Bs, and we couldn’t find a game or DVD that can noticeably outpace the Iiyama’s pixels. The panel flew through our real-world and scientific tests, although it slipped up slightly in our colour-range test. White levels became indistinguishable for the final 12 levels out of 255 shades, indicating the potential to lose highlight detail in bright images.

Iiyama itself makes it clear this panel is more suited to games and movies than desktop publishing, but it makes a reasonable stab at colour customisation. On the OSD, you’ll find no more detail than 1, 2 and 3, but at least these are defined as 9300K, 7500K and 6500K in the manual. The OSD itself is initially frustrating, although we found little need to brave its intricacies over a DVI connection.

It’s always good to have extra features in order to differentiate a TFT, but in this case they’re a mixed bag. The motion sensor works well, but you’ll need to turn it off if watching a film from more than about 3ft away. The ambient light detector had a tendency to over-darken the image, although it could come in handy if you work close to a window. USB hubs are always handy, but the single output makes this of less practical benefit. The stand is basic too, only capable of tilt adjustment.

As such, the X436S simply can’t compete with the ViewSonic VP171s-2, which boasts better image quality and an adjustable stand for less cash.

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