With a clutch of 24in models gathering menacingly around the $600 price point, this wouldn't seem to be a particularly good time for ViewSonic to be unveiling a 21.6in model for $699. This, however, would be to believe the fallacy that all flat-panels are created equal. And the ViewSonic VP2250wb, as we shall see, puts that one to bed with ease.
For while, on paper, those enticingly priced 24in models may appear to have the specifications that matter, in truth they're mere pretenders compared to a high-calibre professional model like the VP2250wb.
The ViewSonic's rather impressive advantage is partly down to its professional-grade colour technology, allowing it to show 106 per cent of the NTSC colour gamut — a figure that's over a third higher than is typical with flat-panels. Load up the PerfectSuite Plus software and use this to properly calibrate the ViewSonic, and the results are strong indeed. The standard 1000:1 contrast ratio can be boosted to 3000:1 using the Dynamic Contrast control, and the colours are deep and sumptuous.
The clarity of the text is also impressive, and far outshines many of the cheaper 22in and 24in flat-panels.
The ViewSonic has a few other handy features, such as the theft control that can equip the flat-panel with a unique pin code, and a zero-dot policy that permits customers to send back the VP2250wb should it arrive with even a single dead pixel.
Pivot facilities mean you can spin the screen and have more lines running down rather than across the workspace. This screen isn't just about work either, and the 2ms response time makes it an excellent model for games and video.
But the ViewSonic isn't without its flaws. The battery of ports and connectors (a selection that includes DVI and a four-port USB hub) looks impressive, but HDMI is conspicuous by its absence. On a screen this good and this expensive, would it really be asking too much to expect to see HDMI?
Much more than this, though, the VP2250wb is hampered by an awful viewing angle. If you try moving your head around the image starts to break up with noticeable colour shifts.