Philips has a good track record at PC Authority when it comes to LCDs, having held the A-List crown in both the 17in and 20in categories, but the 220WS8FB is a slightly different proposition. Instead of a fully adjustable, high-end display, this is a more basic 22in offering, with just DVI and VGA ports, no speakers and a tilt-only stand. But it’s quality that counts most and, in this respect, the 220WS8FB makes a good fist of matching its predecessors.
You’ll need to do a bit of tweaking to get there, though: out of the box, the colour temperature is set to 6500K, a setting that produces a decent level of brightness, but gives everything a yellow hue. After running through the options, we far preferred the colder tones of the Original Colour setting, and we proceeded to lower the contrast down from default to give a bright and even desktop.
Our white and black test screens were impressively bright and dark respectively thanks to the 1000:1 contrast ratio, and that colour change also largely eliminated a slight backlight bleed that we’d noticed on 6500K. Gradient tests were smooth in both greyscale and colour, and we appreciated the vivid blues on show in our landscape photos. Admittedly, the Original Colour setting does emphasise the blue in everything a little too much, but switching to User mode allows you to tweak the individual colours as necessary.
We ran our HD video clips and were dazzled by the crisp edges and bold colours, although it lacks the warmth of the best entertainment monitors we’ve seen. Motion was also completely smooth, and the Philips is HDCP-compliant for use with any HD players you may own. But there are better monitors around for that sort of usage: Samsung’s A-Listed 226BW is an obvious example and it only costs around $30 more for a far superior visual experience.
But if the styling, extras and glossy quality of the Samsung don’t appeal, as an office LCD the 220WS8FB is a joy to use. The 1680 x 1050 resolution offers plenty of space to lay out your applications, and window bars and menu boxes were clear. We’re not sure many offices will roll out 22in LCDs, but those that do will be happy with the Philips 220WS8FB.
This Review appeared in the November, 2007 issue of PC & Tech Authority Magazine
Source: Copyright © PC Pro, Dennis Publishing