Samsung SyncMaster S23A550H review

Barry de la Rosa
22 Oct 2011
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
inc VAT

A smart design and clever cable management system make the S23A550H an attractive monitor, but it's expensive and you can get better image quality for less



23in screen size, 1,920x1,080 resolution, DVI: no, VGA: yes, HDMI:

The Samsung SyncMaster S23A550H is a stylish 23in screen with a Full HD resolution and a clever cable management system. Two small panels on the back of the stand pop out to reveal enough space for two or three cables, and once re-assembled the effect is very smart, with the cables only visible at the very bottom of the stand at the back.

Samsung SyncMaster S23A550H

It's a little disappointing that there are only VGA and HDMI inputs, where as at this price we'd have expected to see either an extra HDMI or a DVI input in addition.

With no visible ports or grilles and a huge expanse of glossy, two-tone plastic, this makes the S23A550H a neat addition to any desk. Basic image quality is impressive, with accurate colours and good contrast, and surprisingly good viewing angles for a TN panel.

Samsung SyncMaster S23A550H ports

In fact, the S23A550H has an option that lets you choose which angle to watch it from, which Samsung calls Magic Angle. This seems to work as intended, with little degradation in image quality, as long as you keep within a small range of the preset angle.

Samsung's other Magic settings are hit and miss though: Magic Color seems to subtly boost colours without over-saturation, but those who work with photos might not appreciate the inaccuracies this inevitably introduces, whilst Magic Bright is a form of dynamic contrast, raising or lowering the brightness in response to the darkness of the current image. This has four settings, which mostly degrade image quality, but the Cinema preset helped.

Samsung SyncMaster S23A550H side

It boosted colours, making them punchier, especially flesh tones, while the sharpening helps bring out detail in a scene. The contrast is quite good, but in the darkest part of a scene detail was lacking. We also found that large areas of a similar colour, such as a sandy beach didn't have all of the detail as on a higher-quality display.

There's nothing particularly wrong with the S23A550H, but for the type of panel and the limited range of inputs, it's an expensive choice. If you're looking for a monitor this size, the LG IPS235V is a better choice. It's cheaper, has more inputs and a wealth of colour calibration options.

Basic Specifications



Viewable size23 in
Native resolution1,920x1,080
Contrast ratio1,000:1 (5,000,000:1 dynamic)
Horizontal viewing angle170°
Vertical viewing angle160°
Response time2ms
Response time typegrey-to-grey
Screen depth26mm
Base (WxD)235x235mm
Screen elevation122mm


Portrait modeno
Wall mount optionno
Height adjustableno
Internal speakersnone
Detachable cablesyes
USB hubnone
Integrated power supplyno
Kensington lock lugyes
Display extrasnone
VGA inputyes
DVI inputno
S-video inputno
Component inputno
Composite inputno
HDCP supportyes
Audio inputsN/A


Power consumption standby1W
Power consumption on27W

Buying Information

Warrantytwo years collect and return

Read more