LG M2343A-BZ review
The ambitiously designed M2343A hits a sweet spot with a 23in widescreen diagonal – big enough for movies, but not overpowering. There’s superb build quality throughout and a decent set of connections at the back, hidden under a removable panel. Two scart, composite video and S-Video ports cater for most AV equipment, with analog D-SUB and DVI-I inputs for connecting to a PC. The latter isn’t HDMI compatible, so you won’t be able to watch DRM-protected footage, although the native resolution of 1,366 x 768 will support HDTV formats up to and including 720p.
Our technical tests revealed a wide colour range, with light and dark shades exhibiting good separation at extremes. Colour handling is weaker, with significant banding in both colour and greyscale ramps.
Real-world testing proved kinder, with the high brightness giving images real impact. Contrast was acceptably good too, with blindingly bright whites and charcoal blacks. The 8ms response time equated to a smudge-free experience in action scenes, but viewing angles are disappointing, with contrast tailing off rapidly past the 45-degree point. The integrated 7W speakers are loud, and the SRS-WOW algorithm is pleasingly immersive.
The menu system is fiddly using the side-mounted buttons, with the remote control the best way to access the flexible picture-in-picture options and child lock. Setting up the integrated analog tuner is simple, but with the coming analog switch-off and sub-£40 price of Freeview boxes, it’s almost ancillary.
LG is calling this ‘an LCD monitor with TV functions’ but, aside from our technical concerns, we’d have our reservations about using it on the desktop. Not only does it take up a lot of room – 285mm from front to back – but you’ll also need to take the brightness way down to be comfortable.
As a media front-end, the ravishing looks and dazzling brightness are tempting, but the technical issues and poor viewing angles ultimately rob this panel of an award.
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