bit-tech.net

Is it a monitor, or is it a TV?

Posted on 10th May 2010 at 10:46 by Richard Swinburne with 34 comments

Since moving out to Taiwan I needed a monitor, so I gave the lovely people at Asus a buzz and asked if they could hook me up with something spare. Anything. I'm not fussy, just cheap poor like all journalists (where's my violin?). All it had to do was display an image - I didn't even care if the green and reds looked like they were made within a nuclear reactor.

Is it a monitor, or is it a TV? Asus MT276HE 27
Click to enlarge

However Asus being Asus, dropped off a box the size of Wales with 27in LCD inside. Part of me went giddy with excitement on discovering it, then the rest of me when hnnrrrghhh as I hauled it into the lift and then dragged it out and into my apartment.

Is it a monitor, or is it a TV? Asus MT276HE 27
Click to enlarge

After finding that construction was something more akin with an Ikea purchase - screwdriver with no instructions - I plonked it on the desk and admired.

Yes, it's still just as massive. Behold: The MT276HE!

Is it a monitor, or is it a TV? Asus MT276HE 27
Click to enlarge

I recently bought myself a Samsung 24in for my own personal use (OK, I'm not a total skinflint), which is a lovely 1,920 x 1,200 screen. The new MT276HE is a 1080p one - 1,920 x 1,080. That said, it still dominates my desk.

Is it a monitor, or is it a TV? Asus MT276HE 27
Click to enlarge

While the panel itself is a little bigger than the Samsung, the MT276HE is considerably bulkier. There's a particularly meaty 3cm bezel on all sides, and unfortunately there's no height adjustment either so it appears to have a very stout midriff. In all honesty, to use it is more like a TV since the included stereo speakers in the base are some of the best monitor speakers I've heard. OK, that's a low bar to hit, but I'm using them as they're not half-bad and there are two HDMI ports it's exceptionally simple to hook them up: both my Radeon HD 5870 and Intel GMA HD throughput the audio perfectly.

Is it a monitor, or is it a TV? Asus MT276HE 27
Click to enlarge

There's no DVI mind, and the only other input is VGA, which the technical toff in me naturally turns his nose up at. If you can't get audio over HDMI then the MT276HE will accept a standard 3.5mm stereo jack and even S/PDIF too! Again - more TV than monitor?

What's annoying is that display inputs jut directly out the back, so it can’t be pushed right up against the wall, and I’d imagine this also possibly interferes with a low profile VESA mount as well.

In terms of colour quality and image speed I've got nothing to compare it to here so you'll have to get an objective "not bad-to-pretty good", however currently I am having issues getting the full resolution working properly on ATI cards over HDMI, but Nvidia cards work perfectly. I've still yet to nail down that issue, and I'll update this when I do.

While 1080p is perfect for a 27in TV, for a 27in monitor, Asus really needs to up the resolution - 1,920 x 1,200 feels the right size on a 24in and so stretched over 27in, it lacks crispness. Unfortunately more pixels means more money and $360 is competitive for a "27in", although it seems us UK folk will have to import from abroad. Boo!

34 Comments

Discuss in the forums Reply
Instagib 10th May 2010, 11:17 Quote
Can i have free stuff?
wuyanxu 10th May 2010, 11:31 Quote
1080p on a 27inch monitor?

agree with Bindi, we need more Dell U2711 or iMac 27inch kind of resolution monitors, 2560 x 1440 for 27inch sounds about right for a desktop monitor.
rickysio 10th May 2010, 11:32 Quote
Most likely this is aimed at the bedroom HTPC crowd?
scrimple3D 10th May 2010, 11:42 Quote
I agree with wuyanxu.

After having a look at one of the those iMac 27" models, I'd like a 27" screen of that sort of resolution, but the prices out there are a bit crazy.
Xir 10th May 2010, 12:05 Quote
...you have a 24" and had to "beg" for a secondary one? :D

On secondary note, why do you accept a monitor that Bit-Tech wouln't review?
Or better said...review more cheap large monitors!
Denis_iii 10th May 2010, 12:11 Quote
hmm they need to do a 22/24 inch version!
phuzz 10th May 2010, 12:27 Quote
Our sony TV has great built in speakers, but that's because it's one of the last of the old school MASSIVE CRT screens, so there's plenty of spare room for decent sized speakers.
My mate has a 40" Sony LCD which has pretty nice sound, but it just lacks any kind of bass. That's the trouble with these fancy newfangled flat screens, no room for decent speakers :(
shadeygrey 10th May 2010, 12:29 Quote
Its not a TV unless it has a remote!

i used to have an asus "confused" monitor, with speakers and more inputs than i ever needed like: component, composite, vga and dvi

So i had sky and the xbox hooked up when the misses was watching girly crap on tv.. but with no remote meant little ol me had to keep getting up to adjust the volume etc.. so i sold it and bought another TV ;) (oh and a 30inch dell muha)
wawa 10th May 2010, 13:04 Quote
i still have an older samsung t220HD which has every connector under the sun, a remote, and works with everything. great as a bed tv/monitor mounted on the wall.

btw, for the asus^^ there are right-angle hdmi cables out there, just like s-ata
ripmax 10th May 2010, 13:08 Quote
Yeah TV's need a remote, so this is just a monitor with some extra pointless inputs.
[USRF]Obiwan 10th May 2010, 13:48 Quote
I rather have a 240hz HD 42" rear LED TV without thick bezels, speakers and useless other stuff. Just a power and HDMI connector on the bottom (not the rear) to connect to my surround setup.
dec 10th May 2010, 14:35 Quote
Quote:
I didn't even care if the green and reds looked like they were made within a nuclear reactor.

Careful, they might have sent you a GTX 480 tri-SLI PSU instead.

Asus should just go all the way and put the RF input and TV tuner in it then sell it for $200
Gonzalo-Gonads 10th May 2010, 15:11 Quote
This is a TV
rickysio 10th May 2010, 15:13 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by [USRF
Obiwan]I rather have a 240hz HD 42" rear LED TV without thick bezels, speakers and useless other stuff. Just a power and HDMI connector on the bottom (not the rear) to connect to my surround setup.

He's going to put it on a desk.

Desk.

Try gaming with a 42" in front of your face.
mighty_pirate 10th May 2010, 16:24 Quote
[QUOTE=rickysio]
Quote:
Originally Posted by [USRF
Obiwan]Try gaming with a 42" in front of your face.
Actually, I've tried that with a 36" & it was awesome. Even in an FPS, where I thought it would screw with my accuracy.
I wouldn't want to go much bigger for an FPS though, but for something like a racer you can't go too big. I played Burnout Paradise on a 60odd ft 4K cinema screen once & that was phenomenal.
saspro 10th May 2010, 16:29 Quote
Is it a monitor, is it a TV or is it a slow news day?
Azayles 10th May 2010, 17:27 Quote
To answer the title of this post: It's not a TV as it lacks a TV tuner. While it has a composite video input, and you could easily hook up a freeview box or whatnot to this, the monitor itself has no means of picking up a TV signal.
So it's just a fancy shmancy monitor :-)
Arj12 10th May 2010, 18:22 Quote
To my mind what makes a TV is not just the TV tuner and a remote but the inclusion of scart (I wonder when Scart will start to be fazed out. Anyone know?)! I might just move to Taiwan from the sounds of things! Quiet a few people on this site seem to get free stuff; be it for journalists or sponsorship for modders!
BioSniper 10th May 2010, 20:30 Quote
Quote:
Since moving out to Taiwan I needed a monitor
Hang on.. Wat?
Azayles 10th May 2010, 20:36 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Arj12
To my mind what makes a TV is not just the TV tuner and a remote but the inclusion of scart (I wonder when Scart will start to be fazed out. Anyone know?)! I might just move to Taiwan from the sounds of things! Quiet a few people on this site seem to get free stuff; be it for journalists or sponsorship for modders!
No it'd still need a means to pick up a TV signal, whether this be a UHF tuner module or a freeview decoder, for it to be classed as a TV. It can have all the scart sockets it wants, it won't make it a telly.
droitwichdosser 10th May 2010, 23:20 Quote
Richard,

methinks you are in need of something like a 90° HDMI adapter, like this here http://www.tvcables.co.uk/cgi-bin/tvcables/hdmi-90-degree-angle-adapter.html

hope that helps
MSHunter 11th May 2010, 00:45 Quote
I'm sorry but has no one heard of the L shaped HDMI cables? They are made so that you can plug in to back facing HDMI sockets and still push the thing up against a wall or use a VESA mount.

http://www.ebuyer.com/product/192000
This one even has a 180 degree movable joint.
Faulk_Wulf 11th May 2010, 02:13 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by BioSniper
Quote:
Since moving out to Taiwan I needed a monitor
Hang on.. Wat?

+1. I missed a boat, hell I didn't know there was a harbor.
woodshop 11th May 2010, 02:56 Quote
Quote:
There's no DVI mind, and the only other input is VGA, which the technical toff in me naturally turns his nose up at. If you can't get audio over HDMI then the MT276HE will accept a standard 3.5mm stereo jack and even S/PDIF too! Again - more TV than monitor?

What's annoying is that display inputs jut directly out the back, so it can’t be pushed right up against the wall, and I’d imagine this also possibly interferes with a low profile VESA mount as well.

90 degree + HDMI->DVI, and the not problem problem is solved.
rickysio 11th May 2010, 08:37 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by woodshop
Quote:
There's no DVI mind, and the only other input is VGA, which the technical toff in me naturally turns his nose up at. If you can't get audio over HDMI then the MT276HE will accept a standard 3.5mm stereo jack and even S/PDIF too! Again - more TV than monitor?

What's annoying is that display inputs jut directly out the back, so it can’t be pushed right up against the wall, and I’d imagine this also possibly interferes with a low profile VESA mount as well.

90 degree + HDMI->DVI, and the not problem problem is solved.

The issue is, the dongle should have came with it, or it shouldn't require a dongle at all.
MSHunter 11th May 2010, 12:07 Quote
It's the assumption that Bit - tech readers would find it a problem and to add to that even for the times that the author is right, it would be better to say hey look just buy one of these (add link) =>

http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/1m-Scan-CDLHD-901-HDMI-cable-with-swivel-ends-v13B-Spec

http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/Scan-HDHD-RA90-HDMI-Right-Angled-Gender-Changer-90-Degrees-(Check-the-Top-Connector)

http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/Scan-HDHD-RA270-HDMI-Right-Angled-Gender-Changer-270-Degrees-(Check-the-Top-Connector)

http://www.scan.co.uk/Products/18m-Scan-CDLHD-902-HDMI-cable-with-swivel-ends-v13B-Spec

The best part is all of the mentioned cables are under a tenner, so they are cheaper then store bought ones. (I think there is even a "gold plated" one in there too.

Please consider solutions instead of just complaining. It is much more helpful, especially since many Monitors/TVs have this "problem"
Dreaming 11th May 2010, 14:13 Quote
I got myself an LG LH400032 which is really fantastic in fulfilling a similar role. 1080p and cost me £400. I spent several weeks researching into it last year and this was the best bet at the time vs the competition and colour reproduction / refresh rate.

At LANs everyone says they want one, even sitting next to my friend with his £1000+ Dell 2007WFP.

Also I use a DVI -> HDMI cable. You can get 90 degree angled connectors but I don't use any (my TV actually has a cable tidy loop for 90 degree connectors to go through so they all run down a single column at the back - excellent stuff).

If anyone wants pics or has questions to using a TV as a monitor feel free - but I have absolutely no regrets.
MiT 11th May 2010, 20:40 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by wawa
i still have an older samsung t220HD which has every connector under the sun, a remote, and works with everything. great as a bed tv/monitor mounted on the wall.

+1

I have a samsung syncmaster 2333HD, (which is 23") it has a DVI, VGA, 2x HDMI, component, and a scart connection. Also comes with a a remote. 1920 x 1080p res.
Also has built in freeview!!
All for less then £210


any way as for quick review needs more ports, and a bigger res i guess.

Also Taiwan..? for work? you must be having a blast there?

whats the tech there like?

i remember when i was in Japan, they had some cool stuff, but too prices to bring here, also they love mobiles there, and heated toilet seats :D
[-Stash-] 25th May 2010, 14:24 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Richard Swinburne
currently I am having issues getting the full resolution working properly on ATI cards over HDMI

Yeah, I ran into this problem as well when I installed a new ATI Radeon HD 5770. It really took the shine of the new graphics card for the first few days until I finally gave up and asked!

Anyway, in order to get ATI graphics cards not "overscan" at 1920x1080 you need to do this: http://www.avforums.com/forums/graphics-cards-internal-video-devices/1170770-ati-hd5770-underscanning-1080p-lcd.html#post11420497

Why the hell they default like this when going out over HDMI I have absolutely NO idea...
barndoor101 25th May 2010, 14:45 Quote
+1 on the 2333HD - its the left most monitor in my eyefinity array, and i can just switch it over to TV mode if im not gaming.
shoxicwaste 3rd July 2010, 23:30 Quote
I use my TV as a monitor, it a technika piece of **** TV, it was no more than £200 and is 720p with 200:1 contrast ratio. it sucks balls... its 24" and looks identical to your in the picture, just has a TV tuner and RF loop and a few scart inputs. :( Can't wait to get my 3x 24'' 1080p LED monitors :3
forum_user 13th November 2013, 10:17 Quote
Sorry for necro!!!

I was trying to find out details for the latest 4k monitors and stumbled over this thread. I wish companies would hurry up and get 4k out there properly (and at the right price!).
Quote:
Originally Posted by wuyanxu
1080p on a 27inch monitor?

agree with Bindi, we need more Dell U2711 or iMac 27inch kind of resolution monitors, 2560 x 1440 for 27inch sounds about right for a desktop monitor.

I was thinking of getting rid of my 27" iMac (mid 2010) and getting a Macbook Air and coupling it to a 27" Apple monitor/display. The amount of times I have wanted to transport my work from the office to the sofa has made my mind up on that. I have a very old Dell 30" (2560x1600) for my gaming and it has been a real joy to use. However I want to upgrade the PC display as well as my Macs.

The mentions of using a 27" Apple display for main PC gaming has made me think that not only would it look great to have 2 Apple displays sat side by side with the Vesa monitor arms I use, but it will also help with FPS if I drop from 2560x1600 to 2560x1440. But do Apple displays 'game ok? I response times need to be great - my old iMac is not great for gaming so its not like I test Bioshock Infinite at full res on it.
Fishlock 13th November 2013, 10:38 Quote
Dear God this thread is three and a half years old.

Create a new thread in the Hardware section, you'll get more of a response there.
forum_user 13th November 2013, 10:48 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Fishlock
Dear God this thread is three and a half years old.

Create a new thread in the Hardware section, you'll get more of a response there.

Yes good point. I did think at the time that it would be better to necro than create a new one - but you are right!

Anyway - I think I just found my new gaming monitor!

http://en.community.dell.com/dell-blogs/direct2dell/b/direct2dell/archive/2013/10/31/new-dell-ultrasharp-monitors-deliver-phenomenal-screen-performance-and-clarity-for-an-impressive-viewing-experience.aspx?ACD=10550055-3891137-rewrite&AID=3891137
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