The 23-inch Samsung SyncMaster XL2370 is thin, sleek and light. It's as if Samsung's own SyncMaster P2370 has a thinner, prettier sister. The XL2370 also has an LED backlight that lets it perform better with movies and games. It's available now for around £300.
The XL2370's display measures just over 25mm in depth. That's remarkably thin. Most monitors of this size, such as the Dell SP2309W, measure over 64mm thick. The bezel measures 28mm on the sides and 44mm on the bottom, where a light-grey Samsung logo resides. On the edge of the bezel is a plastic transparent overlay. The overlay gives the impression of changing colour based on the hue of the light in the room.
The full width of the display is 22.4 inches -- about the same as that of the P2370. The screen has a matte finish. The neck is made of transparent glass, with bluish crystals at the bottom. The glass reflects the crystals, which creates a blue hue within the neck. The effect is subtle, but it makes the XL2370 -- and the P2370, which sports the same neck design -- stand out visually among other monitors.
The oval-shaped footstand measures 279mm wide by 191mm deep, but, despite such a wide footstand, the display wobbles considerably -- even with just a small shove. This is, in part, because of the display's light weight. It weighs less than 3.6kg -- about 680g lighter than the P2370. The 24-inch, LED-backlit Dell G2410 weighs 5.4kg.
The bottom of the bezel sits about 61mm above the desktop, but, unfortunately, the screen height isn't adjustable and there isn't a screen-rotation or pivot option for portrait mode. The capability to tilt the screen back 25° is the only ergonomic feature.
The XL2370 is thinner than the P2370 but has more connection options, including DVI-D, HDMI, and analogue and digital audio out connections. All the connections sit on the back, in the lower section of the panel, and face backwards, instead of down, as on most monitors. The connections are recessed only about 13mm into the monitor, making for easy access.
Pressing your finger against the bottom right-hand corner of the bezel brings up the hidden on-screen-display button array. The white, glowing buttons disappear after a couple of moments of inactivity, but there's an option in the OSD to illuminate them at all times for easier calibration. You can also set the OSD to remain on-screen for 5, 10, 20 or 200 seconds.
The array consists of 'menu', 'up', 'down', 'enter' and 'auto' buttons. The up and down buttons also double as brightness and preset shortcut buttons respectively. Picture options consist of 'brightness', 'contrast' and 'sharpness'. You can also set the colour tone to 'cool', 'normal', 'warm' or 'custom', which lets you change the red, green and blue attributes individually.
There are seven presets, including 'custom', 'text', 'Internet', 'game', 'sport', 'movie' and 'dynamic contrast'. Each preset varies the colour temperature and brightness of the display according to the task in hand. While not as intuitive as Dell's brilliantly designed OSDs, seen on the G2410 and SP2309W, the XL2370's requires only a short learning curve for you to get the hang of it. Also, we like that the preset menu is only one button press away -- a perk missing from the G2410.