Features & Build Quality
PVA panel technology is clearly the W241D's key selling point and ensures highly competitive on-paper specs. Everything from the 178 degree horizontal and vertical viewing angles to the 1,000:1 contrast ratio (that's the static figure rather than any fantasy-land dynamic rating) and 6ms response times, are right up there with the best. As a 24-inch model, it naturally shares the same 1,920 x 1,200 native resolution as the competition, too.
That's no surprise since the reality of the monitor market is that only a small handful of companies crank out the actual LCD panels that go into monitors from scores of manufacturers. Most well known makers, such as Viewsonic, Dell and Eizo are in the business of integrating third party panels into their chassis. Only a handful of outfits including Samsung, LG and BenQ (panel maker AU Optronics is part of the BenQ group) are able to produce a monitor using their own panels.
Our best current information is that the W241D packs the very latest S-PVA Samsung LCD panel as seen in Samsung's own 245T along with Dell's premium 24-incher and a string of other models. We're still waiting on Hyundai for confirmation of the panel's precise origins, so check back soon for an update.
Editor's note: we have now received confirmation from Hyundai that the W241D does indeed use Samsung's S-PVA panel.
Elsewhere, the feature set is nothing short of comprehensive. Digital connectivity is covered with DVI and HDMI digital ports, in both cases with HDCP encryption support. That's a handy combo that allows you to simultaneously wire up a PC and a set top box, perhaps a PS3 or Blu-ray player. Analogue options take the form of VGA and component inputs, while the audio-in drives a pair of pretty pitiful integrated speakers as well as allowing the inclusion of a handy headphone jack. This model also has a USB header with two USB expansion ports situated on the left hand edge of the screen bezel. The W240D omits these in favour of a slightly cheaper price tag.
One problem that has been apparent on many existing 24-inch widescreen monitors has been their ability to utilise 1:1 pixel mapping when using the monitor at non-native resolutions. This is especially important with a monitor, such as the W241D, which features both HDMI and Component inputs, as it's highly likely that those inputs will be connected to either games consoles or a Blu-ray/HD DVD player.
Having connected the W241D to an Xbox 360 via both HDMI and Component, we're happy to report that 1:1 pixel mapping appears to work very well on this display as long as you're using progressive scanning. When we selected 1080i, we found that the image itself looked fine, but there were four short rows of pixels that were permanently white.
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As for the screen enclosure and stand, both are extremely solidly hewn, albeit exclusively clad in plastics. Still, the glossy black and white finishes combine to give an overall design vibe that's both distinctive and upmarket. What's more, the stand is suitably ambidextrous, offering the full range of tilt, rotate, height and swivel adjustment options. There's no cost-conscious tilt-only nonsense here.
The only conspicuous absentee is a memory card reader of some kind. The final quibble we have with the W241D's quality or presentation involves the too-fancy-by-half controls situated bottom right on the screen bezel. For starters, being moulded into the bezel's black plastic material without the use of any contrasting colours or markings makes them virtually invisible.
What makes it worse, is that even if you do manage to pick them out, the soft-touch actuation is pretty hit and miss. The result is an ergonomic catastrophe and something worth bearing in mind if you plan to use the W241D with multiple input devices. Regularly dipping into the OSD to change inputs or adjust image settings wouldn't be much fun.