Not long ago, a 24-inch full-HD monitor for £180 would have been a conspicuous bargain. The new Iiyama ProLite E2472HD hits both targets and adds an LED backlight for good measure.
Unfortunately, PC monitor prices have been tumbling of late. 24 inches, 1,920 x 1,080 pixels and even an LED backlight are no longer anything that special in a modern feature set. More to the point, the very same feature set can be had for less money from the likes of the BenQ V2410T.
In fact, BenQ goes one better with another model, the EW2420, by throwing in a VA panel for just under £160 through some, but not all, suppliers. In that context, it's hard to see how the Iiyama ProLite E2472HD can really compete.
Going by past experience, it's Twisted Nematic, or TN, LCD technology seems likely to hold it back. On the other hand, the latest TN panels are much improved.
Good for a TN…
Maybe the E2472HD has a chance after all? Out-of-the box impressions don't make things any better though. The engineering and construction are pretty rudimentary. Cheap plastics and a tilt-only stand are your lot.
Okay, the glossy bezel does lift the aesthetic a little. But this is clearly a budget screen.
Likewise, the HDMI, DVI and VGA video input are no more or less than you would expect from a monitor of this size and cost. In other words, the E2472HD screen will win or lose based on image quality. The good news is that the LED backlight is bright, clean and powerful. The panel is also fairly consistent given its TN underpinnings. Edge bleed, so often a problem for TN panels, is mercifully absent.
Black levels are another strong point. Granted, the best PVA panels give deeper blacks still, but the ProLite E2472HD's decent blacks combined with good viewing angles make for an above average movie watching experience. Then there's the excellent pixel response. Teamed with the powerful backlight, the result is a great gaming panel.
…but can't beat VA
Less impressive, however, is the colour accuracy. Whites and bright colours suffer from fairly severe compression, for example. Another problem is the greenish tinge to flesh tones. More generally, colours are simply not as vibrant, saturated and satisfying as those offered by IPS and VA panels.
The 24-inch screen diagonal and full-HD 1,920 x 1,080 pixel are probably the sweet spot right now in terms of size, price and image quality. The ProLite E2472HD adds an LED backlight and a decent set of input options for a solid all-round feature set and reasonable image quality.
So, while the ProLite E2472HD looks good in isolation, it struggles to compete with BenQ's EW2420, a screen that's cheaper but beats it by nearly every metric of image quality. Things are hotting up at this end of the market and this Iiyama monitor can't quite compete.
There's nothing conspicuously wrong with the E2472HD's TN panel or the visuals it produces, but even the LED backlight isn't enough when you consider that a superior VA monitor is available for less money.