Lenovo ThinkVision LT2013p review

Pros

  • Highly adjustable stand
  • Great port selection
  • Energy efficient
  • Good greyscale performance

Cons

  • Narrow viewing angles
  • Oversaturated greens

Large monitors are all the rage these days, but not everyone has the need (or the room) for a monitor that offers a big screen experience. The Lenovo ThinkVision LT2013p is a relatively small 19.5in desktop monitor aimed at just such folks. It's equipped with a handful of business-friendly features, including a USB hub, a variety of video ports, and a flexible ergonomic stand. It handled our greyscale performance test with aplomb and doesn't require much power, but its TN (twisted nematic) panel gets dark when viewed from an angle and its colour accuracy is a little off.

Design

The LT2013p looks just like its slightly bigger sibling, the Lenovo LT2223p. Both share the same business-style black cabinet design seen in the rest of the Lenovo ThinkVision product line, and both feature a round stand that provides a multitude of ergonomic adjustments including tilt, swivel, height, and pivot manoeuvrability. It doesn't offer auto-rotation, however, which means you'll have change the image orientation via your graphics control panel whenever you pivot the panel.

The panel has a maximum resolution of 1,600 x 900 and a matte anti-glare coating that is non-reflective. The cabinet isn't particularly thin (at 55mm), but it can be detached from its stand and hung on a wall using an optional VESA mounting kit.

The lower bezel contains four function buttons and a power switch, all of which are clearly labelled. The left side of the cabinet holds three conveniently placed USB ports and a fourth port is located at the rear of the cabinet. All of the USB ports use USB 2.0 technology rather than the speedier USB 3.0 technology found on more expensive monitors such as the Asus PA249Q. Also around the back is a generous array of video inputs including HDMI, DisplayPort, and VGA ports. There's an upstream USB port and an audio output for use with an external set of speakers, too (the LT2013p does not have built-in speakers).

You don't get many picture settings with this model; you can adjust brightness, contrast, and dynamic contrast ratio, and there are four preset colour temperature settings (neutral, sRGB, reddish, bluish) and a custom setting with RGB saturation levels. Scaling (aspect ratio) and auto-adjust settings are also available.

Lenovo covers the LT2013p with a three year parts, labour, and backlight warranty. Included in the box are VGA, USB, and DisplayPort cables, a setup poster, and a resource CD containing drivers and a user’s guide.

Performance

The LT2013p uses TN (twisted nematic) panel technology to deliver a bright picture without using much power. It averaged around 13 Watts of power during testing, which is exactly what the LT2223p used. It is also EPEAT Gold and Energy Star certified.

We use a colourimeter, DisplayMate software, and SpectraCal's CalMan 5 diagnostic software to measure colour accuracy. In the chart below, each box represents the ideal coordinates for red, green, and blue colours, and the coloured dots represent our measured values. Red and blue colour accuracy was generally good but greens were a bit oversaturated. This is a fairly common trait in low cost TN panels and in this case does not translate to skewed colours or tinting. That said, if colour accuracy is key then you should be looking at a professional grade monitor such as the Asus PA249Q.

Greyscale performance was quite good for a TN panel. The LT2013p had no trouble displaying every shade from the DisplayMate 64-Step Greyscale test, although the gradation was not as clearly defined as what you'll see from a high-end IPS panel. Small text performance was also impressive; small fonts at 5.3 points were legible and well defined.

As is usually the case with TN monitors, the LT2013p's viewing angles were less than ideal. The view from the side (horizontally) was decent with only a minor loss of colour fidelity as you move closer to 90 degrees from centre on either side. However, vertical angles resulted in a darkened screen and skewed colours which became much more apparent when pivoting the panel for portrait mode viewing.

Verdict

The Lenovo ThinkVision LT2013p is a feature-rich business display for users who don't require a big screen monitor and need to maximise their desktop space. Its ergonomic stand offers a wide variety of panel positions for maximum viewing comfort, and its four port USB hub makes it easy to plug and unplug peripherals without having to run cables to your PC.

Green colours tend to run a little hot and viewing angle performance was typical for a TN panel, but the LT2013p's greyscale performance was surprisingly good, and it's priced reasonably at the £150 mark. That said, the NEC MultiSync EA244WMi remains our first choice for business monitors thanks to its all-round superior performance – but note that it does cost considerably more at £280.

Specifications

Manufacturer and Model

Lenovo ThinkVision LT2013p

Supported Video Formats

720p

PC Interfaces

VGA, DVI-D, HDMI, USB, DisplayPort

Video Inputs

DVI, HDMI, D-Sub

Diagonal Screen Size

19.5in

Native Resolution

1600 x 900

Aspect Ratio

16:9