Samsung S27A950D review
Samsung’s products have long been the epitome of style, and the S27A950D is another exceptionally pretty product. Its 27in screen seems to flow in an arc from its massive base, which holds the power connector and video inputs. The base and rear are finished in brushed metal, while the fascia is all glossy black. It's all plastic, but that's why the price isn't in Apple territory.
The S27A950D’s 3D requires active shutter glasses, but they aren’t the ones provided by Nvidia's 3D Vision system. Samsung’s glasses are far lighter and use a small watch battery instead of a fixed rechargeable battery. The screen supports 120Hz refresh rates, however, so there's nothing to stop you buying a 3D Vision kit separately if you already own an Nvidia graphics card. It’s worth noting, however, that replacement Samsung glasses cost about £85, whereas a 3D Vision kit with one pair of glasses costs around £130.
Samsung bundles a copy of the TriDef 3D software with the monitor, and you'll need to set it up differently depending on which make of graphics card you use. The S27A950D’s installation software places a special shortcut on your desktop after you install the software that lets you choose which type of 3D to use. ATI card owners get the best deal here, because the S27A950D worked almost seamlessly with an AMD card fitted during our tests. Unfortunately, Nvidia card owners need to jump through a few extra hoops.
With an AMD card, you can use Windows’ own Direct3D standard to play games, and we found Crysis to be smooth and immersive thanks to its 120Hz refresh rate. With an Nvidia card, you have to set TriDef to side-by-side mode. You then have to switch on 3D manually using the monitor's touch-sensitive controls, which are located beneath the screen. The glasses won't even switch on until you do this. Contrary to intuition, the raw image actually changes from two side-by-side images to a single, albeit fuzzy image when you switch the monitor to side-by-side 3D mode.
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