Once we’d made the Color Mode adjustment, only one concern remained. In Lagom’s Black Level test, the darkest grey box was only just perceptible from its black surrounding on the VP2365wb. Set side by side with NEC’s MultiSync EA231WMi, the NEC showed the darkest grey to be clearly different from the black around it. It’s difficult to say subjectively which is the more accurate, but we’d be tempted to lean towards the NEC.
Blu-ray movies and static photographs only reinforce the VP2365wb’s strengths, though. We spent hours playing back sequences from Avatar on Blu-ray on both monitors, and there’s no question that the VP2365wb easily matches the pricier NEC here. The rich palette of blues and greens were beautifully rendered, and the VP2365wb’s panel managed to produce natural, believable skin tones in even the trickiest scenes.
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It’s almost impossible to tell the two monitors apart but, if anything, we preferred the VP2365wb’s slightly deeper blacks and darker greyscale tracking. There was still plenty of detail in even the darkest scenes, but side by side the VP2365wb’s picture appeared to be noticeably more solid than that of its more expensive rival.
The panel continued to shine when we switched pace with a bout of Call of Duty: Black Ops. All the typical IPS traits are there: great blacks, great viewing angles and rich, punchy colour reproduction. Even the VP2365wb’s 14ms response time failed to bother us. A little ghosting is evident if you view it side by side with the lightning-fast TN-based gaming displays, but in use we barely noticed the difference.
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Input lag isn’t a problem either. We put the VP2365wb head to head with a LaCie CRT monitor, and input lag averaged around 23ms, with our results ranging from a minimum of 10ms to occasional peaks of 40ms. Basically, the VP2365wb has roughly a single frame of lag, and it simply isn’t noticeable.
There’s no doubt that ViewSonic has cut some corners in the process of squeezing such a great IPS panel into a tight budget. But while you’ll miss out on the NEC’s DisplayPort input, brightness sensor and the slightly more robust stand, we’d hesitate to pay almost £100 more for the privilege.
With Viewsonic’s zero pixel defect warranty, the VP2365wb looks like a fantastic bargain. If you want a great monitor at a sensible price, you’ve found it: ViewSonic’s VP2365wb delivers brilliant image quality and a great warranty at a decent price.
Stock levels of this screen have been low for a while, but a large delivery of units is due towards the end of January.