Dell P2314T review

Pros

  • Loaded with ports
  • 10-point touch technology
  • Solid colour and greyscale performance

Cons

  • Pricey
  • Blacks could be darker
  • Reflective glass coating

Whether you're a fan of Windows 8 or not, you really need to use a touchscreen monitor to fully appreciate its user interface – and Dell's P2314T is one of the best equipped mid-sized models to hit our labs. It uses 10-point projected capacitive touch technology that provides excellent gesture and cursor control, and its IPS panel delivers accurate colours and solid greyscale reproduction. It'll cost you a good deal more than you'd pay for a traditional 23in IPS monitor, but if you're ready to realise the full potential of Windows 8, the P2314T is an excellent choice.

Design

Like the Acer T232HL and LG 23ET83V, the P2314T's edge-to-edge glass design is reminiscent of a large tablet or a small HDTV, but more importantly, it provides plenty of room for swiping and flicking through the various Windows screens. The glass is very reflective, however. Beneath the glass the 1,920 x 1,080 panel is framed by 25mm black borders, and there's a shiny Dell logo embedded in the bottom border.

The curved matte black cabinet is 45mm thick and weighs 4.8kg. It has four VESA-compliant mounting holes for hanging the monitor on a wall or in a kiosk, and it comes with a heavy duty silver picture-frame type stand that lets you easily tilt the monitor from 10-degrees to 60-degrees – so that it is almost parallel with the desktop.

On the right side of the cabinet are four function buttons along with the power switch, and the left side holds two USB 3.0 ports. Around the back is a generous array of video ports including two HDMI ports with MHL (Mobile High-Definition Link) connectivity, one DisplayPort (1.2), and one VGA port. There's also a USB 3.0 upstream port, two USB 2.0 downstream ports, and an audio output. The P2314T is not equipped with built-in speakers.

Pressing any of the function buttons launches on-screen labels for each button. The Preset mode screen offers standard, multimedia, movie, game, text, warm, and cool picture presets. There's also a custom colour mode that allows you to change red, green, and blue intensity levels. In addition to brightness and contrast settings there's a colour settings menu with a choice of colour formats (RGB and YPbPr), and an image enhance setting that boosts colour contrast and sharpens the image.

Other settings include aspect ratio, sharpness, clock and phase (analogue only), and horizontal positioning (analogue only). Energy settings allow you to turn off USB power while in standby mode, and the Energy Smart option activates dynamic dimming to conserve power.

Dell backs the P2314T with a three year warranty that includes an Advanced Exchange Service which guarantees a replacement after a phone consultation. Included in the box are HDMI video and USB upstream cables, a quick start guide, a resource CD, and a Velcro cable strap.

Performance

The P2314T's 10-point capacitive touchscreen makes it easy to master the many gesture commands which are an integral part of the Windows 8 user experience. Swiping, pinching, zooming, and flipping pages was quick and effortless, as was typing on the on-screen keyboard.

Colour accuracy was quite good. On the CIE chart above, the boxes represent the ideal coordinates for red, green, and blue, and the dots represent the actual measured coordinates. As shown, red and blue colour accuracy is spot-on, and green is only slightly skewed (but still well within an acceptable range). Colour swatches from the DisplayMate Colour Scales test appeared evenly saturated and there was no evidence of tinting in the 64-step greyscale.

The P2314T did a good job of displaying all steps of the 64-step Greyscale test, but as was the case with the Dell S2340T, the dark greys could have been darker. Viewing angle performance was outstanding; there was no loss of colour fidelity and the picture remained bright from any angle.

The P2314T used 16 Watts of power during testing, which is very efficient for a 23in touchscreen monitor. The Acer T232HL used 26 Watts and the Viewsonic TD2340 used 24 Watts. You will likely conserve even more power if you enable the Energy Smart dynamic dimming feature.

Verdict

There's a lot to like about the Dell P2314T. As a touchscreen monitor it provides smooth and precise swiping, pinching, and zooming gesture control, and its IPS panel delivers rich, accurate colours and wide viewing angles. Toss in a great selection of video inputs, including two HDMI ports with MHL capabilities and a DisplayPort, and a USB 2.0/3.0 hub, and you've got a great mid-sized touchscreen monitor – although it isn’t a particularly cheap panel, it has to be said.