Samsung SyncMaster 2693HM review
Samsung's 2693HM has touch-sensitive menu buttons, which are extremely annoying to use: you can't feel for them in the dark, they don't light up and the icons are barely visible.
Even in broad daylight, you'll need to watch where you poke your fingers while navigating the menus.
It's a relief to note that you won't have to use these buttons often, as the 2693HM needs little tweaking. Samsung provides a number of features to improve the image beyond the standard colour temperature, brightness and contrast controls. There are a selection of modes for contrast, including low-lighting modes for text and web pages, brighter modes for games, sports and movies, and a dynamic mode. For colour, the selection includes a Live Color mode that makes colours much more vibrant at the expense of over-saturation. This is great for games and some movies, but for more natural colours there are other options.
The most useful feature is the ability to assign one of the touch-sensitive buttons as a toggle for these options. As long as you can locate that one button, you won't have to delve into the menu system to switch between gaming and work setups, for example.
With a full set of computer inputs, including HDMI, and a flexible stand that includes vertical positioning and a portrait mode, the 2693HM will feel at home in the office, the living room or anywhere else you need a large, bright display. The base has a built-in carousel for easy swivelling, and the screen can be tilted downwards for positioning above eye level.
The HannsG HG281DP is larger and its price lower, but the 2693HM has more flexibility, better styling and more picture quality options to suit different tasks. Only NEC's EA261WM has better picture quality at this resolution, but you have to pay dearly for that. The 2693HM is a worthy Best Buy award winner.
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