good example of a performing yet affordable IPS monitor
For professionals in digital photography, graphic design,
video editing, prepress, and the like, their monitor of choice is usually one
using in-plane switching (IPS) technology. An IPS panel offers better color
resolution and wider viewing angles, compared to the much more common and
inexpensive TN (twisted nematic) panel. However, prices of IPS monitors have
come down quite a bit, and the Philips 237E3QPH is one example. Priced at $279,
this 23-inch, white LED-backlit monitor has a native resolution of 1920x1080,
and sports a VGA and two HDMI inputs.
Like most 23-inchers we’ve handled, the panel and the
base of the 237E3QPH need to be put together first out of the box. It’s a
simple matter of inserting the base to the column and tightening the screw at
the bottom, so we had the monitor up and running in less than a couple of
minutes. Upon closer inspection, we noticed that this monitor has a translucent
blue bezel that juts out at the sides. With a table lamp behind it, the glow
looks pretty cool; however, the extra width of the bezel may put off those
looking to place two monitors side by side. Five touch controls (which we found
to be quite insensitive) line up along the bottom right; a status LED is placed
in the middle, right where the Philips logo is. If you find the latter
distracting, the intensity can be changed, or it can be turned off completely.
The touch controls on our test unit aren’t
The monitor has a PowerSensor feature that’s aimed to
save power consumption. Infrared signals are transmitted to detect the
proximity of the user, if the user leaves his seat, the monitor would lower the
power consumption. Five settings (for varying detection distances) are
available, and can be quickly adjusted via one of the touch controls. The
monitor will also detect the displayed content and alter the contrast ratio
dynamically by tweaking colors and backlight.
Out of the box, color accuracy was good, though nothing
to shout about. Blue was the main culprit here, coming in a bit too strong.
After calibration, color fidelity was very good; the delta-E dropped to 1.9.
There are no user-selectable gamma settings; it’s fixed at 2.2. Three image
presets are given: Standard, Internet, and Game. For most tasks, Standard
should suffice, as it strikes a good balance between brightness and contrast.
Game will turn on the overdrive circuit (Philips calls it SmartResponse) to
reduce the ghosting effect during games or movies. Philips claims a 7ms
response time with SmartResponse, and 14ms without. In the Color sub-menu, you
can alternate color temperature between 6500K and 9300K; a standalone sRGB mode
can also be found.
All in all, we recommend the Philips 237E3QPH to anyone
looking for a good yet affordable IPS monitor, and who are willing to forgo
things like a USB hub or DisplayPort connection. The lack of a DVI-D connection
may bother some, but that’s easily remedied by an adapter.
At a glance
Panel type: IPS
Response time: 5ms
Video inputs: D-Sub,
Aspect ratio: 16:9
1,000:1 (typical), 2,000,000:1 (SmartContrast)
178/178 degrees (H/V) Tilt Tilt -5/20 degrees
Number of colors: 16.7M
Power consumption: 32.7W
SmartImage Lite, SmartResponse, PowerSensor, touch controls
568x435x238mm (with stand)