The Good, the Bad and the Beautiful: 17" LCDs Reviewed

In Practice

We were really pleased with the qualities of this monitor for static use. The images were rich in color. The blacks were nice and deep and bright colors had good saturation. Latency was naturally apparent when moving windows, but nowhere near as obvious as with the two previous monitors. This monitor was very nice to use for photo retouching. The viewing angles are sufficiently wide. ViewSonic attributes this to its XtremeView technology, and though it can't match what MVA panels can do, the monitor did do better than average in this department for a TN+Film panel.

While it's faster than the other 25 ms monitors, the VX715 wasn't great for gaming. The latency was visible with all fast-action games. The display did a good job with strategy games, though. In Warcraft III, for example, the colors shimmered. But its performance was limited for gaming overall.

The same goes for movies. The monitor did better than the previous two, but action films aren't its strong suit. ViewSonic claims that this monitor is HDTV-ready. Given its lack of responsiveness, I have my doubts about that. The only videos you'll watch on this monitor will be the ones your office mates send you via e-mail.


On the bottom line, the VX715 is not really the monitor I'd recommend for a home computer. A "family" monitor that's not really suitable for games and video doesn't meet the criteria of flexibility needed for that kind of use. But the VX715 is not at all a bad monitor, far from it. The color rendering was excellent and the responsiveness was above average for the 25 ms units. I'd also strongly advise it if your favorite pastime is digital photography. If color rendering is more important to you than responsiveness, it's a $400 investment you won't regret.

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