LCDs prices are falling, screen sizes are on the up and image quality and speed scream "Hello gamer!"We can’t all own 30" screens, be they Dell, Apple, Samsung or HP. In fact for most, monitors that are 24" and above are out of reach financially. The bigger screens even need a fairly up-to-date video card with a dual link DVI port to run, forcing the total cost of ownership higher again. So, as much as we might like to own our own vast portal into another dimension of gaming immersion, sometimes we have to make do with smaller.
Which is what makes the new midrange battleground so interesting. Although only a fraction smaller in size, competitors have fiercely cut the prices on these monitors to a minute size to make them actually attainable to the public at large. In some circumstances this means corners are cut, especially in build quality and we end up with something that feels a little cheap. Yet for the price, it is still massively accessible. What we didn’t expect was just how good the quality was on these bounteous beauties.
The requirements were simple – keep the cost under $1000, and the size above 19". Imagine our surprise when we only received one 19", and a whole bunch of 22" screens, all of them not just under $1000, but under $800, and with all indications that things will get cheaper again.
And so with GeForce 8800GTX in one hand – ow, hot! – DVI cable in the other and the lights dimmed, we jump into marvellous monitor match-up madness once more, to extract a victor. Or a Victoria, if you’re that way inclined.