Acer S273HL review

A unique and attractive design sets the S273HL apart, and its LED backlights help it achieve brilliant contrast and good colour reproduction, but it's far too expensive.

31 Dec 2010
Our Rating 
3/5
Price when reviewed 
379
inc VAT

Specifications

27in screen size, 1,920x1,080 resolution, DVI: no, VGA: yes, HDMI:

The 27in Full HD Acer S273HL is a fantastically novel design: the screen itself is incredibly thin, and has no ports or controls on the rear. Instead, it's attached to an L-shaped stand which contains the inputs and menu buttons. It's the sort of monitor that would look great on a receptionist's desk, but the design has little practical use.

Acer S273HL

In fact, in terms of features it's quite minimalist: there's no swivel or height adjustment, nor is there a USB hub. There are two HDMI inputs, so you could have both your PC and games console or Blu-ray player attached at the same time, and there's a 3.5mm audio input, although it only drives a single, tinny speaker that is only suitable for Windows sounds.

The S273HL's image quality is generally brilliant. Despite its LED backlight, the S273HL's image was darker than its CCFL-backlit rivals. However, as a result we found that colours were more natural and contrast far better, with deeper blacks and more detail in areas dark and light areas.

We loaded the Ambush level in Call of Duty 4 to test gaming performance, and we found the map's brown and dusty landscape looked flat on most monitors, with brown-walled houses and muddy roads blending into each other. On the S273HL, however, subtle differences in colour and detailed textures stood out, creating more depth and realism.

Colours were a bright and vivid, although we did notice a blue cast that Acer seems to have compensated for by setting the colour temperature to Warm by default. The menu system is clear and easy to use, and controlled by four buttons in the front of the stand.

Acer S273HL rear ports

The first item on the menu is Acer's eColor Management, which let you access the image quality presets. We avoided the brash and over-saturated Graphics and Movie modes, while the Text mode simply reduces brightness. Standard mode is fairly normal, and there's also a User mode which lets you save your tweaks. There isn't much to tweak, however, with only basic brightness and contrast, plus Warm, Cool and User colour temperatures.

There's no doubt the S273HL's has great image quality, and the design is novel, but it's far too expensive. The LG E2750V has comparable image quality, a thin design thanks to its LED backlighting, and costs much less.

Basic Specifications

Rating ***

Physical

Viewable size 27 in
Native resolution 1,920x1,080
Contrast ratio 1,000:1 (12,000,000:1 dynamic)
Brightness 300cd/m²
Horizontal viewing angle 170°
Vertical viewing angle 160°
Response time 2ms
Response time type grey-to-grey
Screen depth 25mm
Base (WxD) 312x189mm
Screen elevation 106mm

Features

Portrait mode no
Wall mount option no
Height adjustable no
Internal speakers yes (1x 2W)
Detachable cables yes
USB hub none
Integrated power supply no
Kensington lock lug yes
Display extras 2x HDMI
VGA input yes
DVI input no
S-video input no
Component input no
Composite input no
HDCP support yes
Audio inputs 3.5mm line in

Environmental

Power consumption standby 0W
Power consumption on 29W

Buying Information

Price £379
Supplier http://www.simplyacer.co.uk
Details www.acer.co.uk
Warranty three years collect and return

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