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Philips 273E3 review

Barry de la Rosa
4 Aug 2011
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
286
inc VAT

The 273E3 has good image quality and a generous warranty, but it lacks comprehensive image controls

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Philips' Full HD 273E3 has a standard TN LCD panel, but has amazing image quality despite its on-paper disadvantage to new displays with more modern panels.

Philips 273E3 Bottom

The 273E3 has a choice of VGA, DVI and HDMI inputs, so you'll have no trouble connecting a PC, laptop or console. Although some TN panels suffer from poor viewing angles, we found the 273E3's as wide as any TN panel we've seen, and contrast is excellent. The monitor has an LED backlight, and while these may save power, they can be dimmer than their CCFL equivalents. We found the 273E3's backlight a bit duller than we would have liked, but it's evenly lit and there's very little bleed-through of light when viewing a black screen.

he 273E3's display has a matte finish which doesn't reflect bright objects or light sources, so is better for brightly-lit offices than screens with reflective coatings. A matte finish can often add a grain to images and make colours less vibrant, but we found colours strong and saw little evidence of grain.

The screen's surround is made from a dark grey plastic that's a welcome relief from the usual black. The round base has a short stand, so the screen sits only 80mm above the desk. A row of touch-sensitive controls sits in the centre underneath the screen, but like all touch-sensitive controls they can be trickier to use than physical buttons.

Philips 273E3

The menu has a black background and grey text, and is well organised and clear. You have limited control over the image, however; you can change brightness and contrast, and toggle the SmartResponse and SmartContrast options. The former, which changes the screen's response time dynamically, had little effect on the image, while the latter is typical of dynamic contrast functions - the transitions between dark and light scenes caused noticeable shifts in brightness that were distracting and didn't improve image quality.