We were impressed by AMD’s multi-screen Eyefinity technology when we tested it previously, so when we heard that Samsung's three-screen MD230X3 was available, we offered our grandmothers in return for a review sample. Samsung graciously agreed to send us a sample, although the company told us we could keep our grandmothers - it looks as though we’ll have to stump up for that retirement home placement after all.
With their slim 10mm bezels and rare DisplayPort inputs, the three 23in 1,920 x 1,080, IPS-based screens of the MD230X3 seem ideal for Eyefinity gaming. However, given the niche nature of multi-screen gaming, it's not surprising that Samsung is pitching this kit as a professional display ‘for ultimate multi-tasking’.
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A single height-adjustable stand supports all three screens. The two side screens hang from the middle display via a pair of cunning hinges. These allow the side screens to fold inwards by 30 degrees. This ensures that the screens are level, and that the bezels make contact to minimise the gaps where the screens join.
Each hinge requires four screws – two for the centre screen and two for the side screens. This may not sound like enough screws to hold your precious triple-screen setup together, but the bezels of the screens are made from metal, so the fit is pretty sturdy. You'll also find a sufficient number screw holes on the back of each screen to mount it in either landscape or portrait orientation.
However, the bezels are made from several pieces of metal rather than solid sheets – if you push a side screen back against the centre screen, elements of the bezels worryingly split apart. The raw, industrial finish of the bezels also leaves a lot to be desired. Samsung has attempted to alleviate this by supplying two magnetic metal strips that attach to the ends of a three-screen landscape assembly. However, this is a poor substitute for a genuine finish – especially if you use a portrait setup – and it means the screens’ ugly tops are exposed.
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At least Samsung has put some effort into making the MD230X3 easy to accommodate. The stand fits comfortably on a desk, despite the 55 x 30cm (W x D) stand and combined weight of 24kg. It requires only one power input; both the single power cable and USB remote control are daisy-chained between the three screens. The remote enables you to switch on all three screens at once and adjust their display settings. Without this feature, you would be constantly pressing buttons on each screen, even after you had set them up. The remote can also control each screen individually.
Display type IPS TFT
Dimensions (mm) 1,586 x 536 x 307 (W x D x H)
Connections 3 x DVI, 3 x DisplayPort, 3 x D-Sub
Viewable screen size 61in or 41in
Maximum resolution 5,760 x 1,080 or 1,920 x 3,240
Contrast ratio 150,000:1 (dynamic), 3,000:1 (static)