Samsung SyncMaster 2243BW Wide Screen LCD

Introduction and Specification

For each type of product and in each market, there is usually a specific price segment that will provide the best value proposition for consumers, often known as the 'sweet spot'. For quite some time, the 19" widescreen was the sweet spot of the consumer LCD monitor market. Hovering between the cheaper but aging 17" screens and the expensive but only slightly larger 20" screens, the 19" widescreen LCD provided the best value for a long time. However, in the last 8-10 months, LCD monitor production has increased and the price of LCD panels has fallen dramatically. The 20" screens which once seemed like such a poor value proposition, costing up to $100 more than 19" screens despite only offering one more inch of screen real-estate were now within $20. However, the biggest shift in LCD monitor value came with the introduction and proliferation of new 22" widescreens.

Perhaps introduced to help mitigate the large market gap between 20" and 24" monitors, or more likely because it is simply more efficient to produce 22" sheets of glass at the current batch of LCD panel factories, 22" LCDs came in just above 20" models in cost but offered two more inches of screen real estate. Over the last half year, the price of 22" inch LCDs has creeped lower and ever closer to 20" LCDs to the point where they can regularly be found for nearly the same price. A quick look at the HotHardware price matching system reveals that 22" monitors currently start at $190, with 20" monitors starting at $180 and 19" monitors occupying the $160 area. At around $8.5-$9 per inch, the 22" screen size is one of the current sweet spots in the LCD market. This makes the 22" screen size very attractive and luckily most LCD monitor manufacturers have at least one 22" to offer, so there are plenty of models to choose from. Today we will be looking at one of the latest additions to the 22" market segment, the Samsung 2243BW.

Samsung is one of the worlds largest LCD panel manufacturers and they offer an extensive line of LCD products including one of, if not the biggest catalog of 22" monitors of any LCD manufacturer. Samsung's website displays 8 different 22" models and that is just on their US website. There are literally dozens of 22" models that Samsung offers outside of the US, although many of these are nothing more than localized versions. Part of the reason why Samsung has so many 22" models is because they offer monitors tailored to just about any setting, from sleek multimedia sets to minimalistic business models. The Samsung 2243BW we are looking at today is one of the newest members of the 22" LCD line-up and it appears to be aimed at the business market.

Samsung 2243BW 22" Widescreen Monitor
Specifications and Features
Display Size 22" (55.9cm) diagonal and viewable image 
Display Type Thin-Film Transistor LCD Active Matrix, TN panel
Display Viewing Angle 170 degrees horizontal, 160 degrees vertical 
Scanning Frequency Horizontal: 30-81 KHz, Vertical: 50-85 Hz
Input Terminal          Analog (15-pin D-sub VGA) and Digital (DVI-D)
Display Brightness 300 cd/m2 (typical) 
Native Resolution
1680x1050 @ 60 Hz 
Contrast Ratio  DC 8000:1 (1000:1 static contrast ratio)
Display Color 16.7 Million
Response Time 5 ms (GTG)
Pixel Pitch 0.282 mm
Power Source Input Rating: 100 to 240V~
Power Consumption  45W in operating mode, <1W in sleep mode 
Operating Environment 50-104 degrees F, 10-80% RH (non-condensing) 
Storage Environment -4-113 degrees F, 5-95% RH (non-condensing)
Stand Height Adjustable, Pivot, Swivel, Tilt
Mounting  Standard VESA 4-hole 100 mm x 100 mm 
Dimensions 19.9 x 13.1 x 2.8 in. (505.5 x 331.5 x 67.6 mm) 
Dimensions (with stand) 19.9 x 16.4 x 8.6 in. (505.5 x 417.2 x 217.5 mm) 
Weight Monitor with Stand: 14 lbs. (6.35 Kg)
Package: 18.07 lbs. (8.20 Kg)
EMI Standard  FCC Class B 
EPA Energy Star This monitor is EPA ENERGY STAR® compliant and ENERGY2000 compliant when used with a computer equipped with VESA DPM functionality.
TCO Certification TCO'03
Included Accessories
 AC Power Cable, D-sub Cable, Cable Management Clip
Special Features 
MagicBright3, Off timer, Image Size Colour Effect, Customised key, MagicWizard & MagicTune with AssetManagement, Windows Vista Premium, DVI with HDCP, MagicRotation S/W (Pivot) Safe Mode (DownScaling in UXGA)

While the Samsung 2243BW may be aimed at business use, its specifications suggest that it should be capable of quite a bit more than just spreadsheets and word documents. With good viewing angles, decent 5ms response time, good brightness and excellent 1000:1 static contrast ratio, the 2243BW should be well equipped to handle any multimedia you may throw its way. The 2243BW is actually slightly better specified than the wildly popular Samsung 226BW, one of the most widely and highly recommended 22" monitors.

TCO'03 Certification Badge

One sign that gives away the 2243BW's business orientation is the prominently displayed TCO'03 certification badge. TCO is a series of certifications for office equipment that stipulate requirements for products to help improve the working environment. The requirements for each TCO certification focuses on four main areas; ergonomics, emissions, ecology and energy. The certifications are categorized in years, although this does not mean a TCO certification for one year is necessarily better or more up to date than another. Instead each certification is meant for a different class or group of office product. The TCO group of certifications cover a wide variety of products including computers, mobile phones, printers, furniture and of course, monitors. The TCO'03 certification that the Samsung 2243BW bears, for instance, specifically pertains to monitors. TCO'03 certifies that any monitor bearing its mark meets a minimum level of specification concerning display resolution, brightness, contrast, reflections, color reproduction, ergonomics, electromagnetic emissions, electrical safety, energy usage and environmental impact (ecology). All TCO'03 certified displays manufactured after 2006 are also required to meet the RoHS directive. While the TCO'03 isn't a mark of distinction like a THX certification would be for speakers, it does somewhat guarantee that a certified product will be relatively pleasant to use in an office environment.

The Samsung 2243BW is actually a member of a group of monitors that share the 2243 numerical designation. At this time we can only confirm two other members, the BWX and the WM. However, there are reports that a BWP was spotted at CeBIT which uses a different panel with a rather odd native resolution of 2048x1152. According to the official specifications we have seen, the BW, BWX and WM are functionally identical and differ only in peripheral features. The BW seems to be the business oriented model as it is the only one with TCO'03 certification and it sports flat black paint. The BWX offers a 2-port USB hub built into the stand as well as shiny, gloss black paint. Finally, the WM has built-in stereo speakers. All three models may be offered with either a 4-way adjustable stand or a simple stand with only limited tilt adjustment. Which stand you get seems to depend on where the monitor was purchased. For this evaluation, we will be looking at the basic 2243BW with a 4-way adjustable stand.

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