So what's the deal with a 19-incher that costs as much as this? Your extra money may not buy you a glowing ring of lights such as with the LG Flatron Fantasy Ring, but you do get Samsung's new cold-cathode flourescent backlight that's designed to make colours more vibrant. But does it work?

Well yes, it does. In a side-by- side test with a standard 19-inch panel, the Syncmaster 913c does boast richer colours, but the difference is hardly astounding. In general, unless you do have a two-monitor setup, you're unlikely to notice the difference.

That said, this panel's whites are so pure they'd have Shane Richie and Danny Baker salivating. The Syncmaster 913c would have no problem giving the old doorstep challenge a 21st century revival, revealing the odd hues that other monitors try to palm off as white.

Colour quibbles aside, it's quick and bright, ensuring that it holds its own in the recent clutch of dimly lit games. It's also a good looking unit.

This is a fairly steep price for a mere 1280 x 1024, and while Samsung suggests the monitor is aimed at the connoisseur, unless you moonlight as a professional graphic designer and need the kind of accuracy on offer here you should think about whether it's worth investing in. Mike Channell