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Dell S2340T review

Home OfficeReviews
7/10
by John R. Delaney, 16 Apr 2013Reviews
Dell S2340T review

Until recently, Windows 8 certified touchscreen monitors have been relatively scarce, but not anymore. Monitor manufacturers such as Acer, Viewsonic and LG have all announced multi-touch monitors that are designed to enhance the Windows 8 user experience. Not to be outdone, Dell has joined the fray with the release of the Dell S2340T, a 23in IPS monitor featuring 10-point touch technology and a handful of useful features, including a webcam and USB 3.0 along with Ethernet connectivity.

More importantly, it delivers good colour and greyscale accuracy and responsive touch functionality. However, this display has an eye-watering price tag, and other negatives are that it only has two video inputs, and lacks VESA wall mounting capabilities.

Design and features

As with the Acer T232HL and Viewsonic TD2340, the S2340T boasts a slick tablet-like design. The 1,920 x 1,080 IPS panel sports a glossy (and reflective) edge-to-edge glass coating over black borders. The requisite Dell logo is positioned along the lower edge of the display and there five buttons on the right side of the cabinet. A 2-megapixel webcam and dual microphone array is embedded in the glass above the panel.

The use of edge-mounted LED backlighting allows for a very thin (20mm) cabinet, which is supported by a glossy black square base and a silver dual hinge mechanism. The hinge provides height and tilt adjustability, and allows you to lay the panel flat so it is parallel with the desktop surface (see below). Unlike the Acer and Viewsonic models, the S2340T doesn't have VESA-compliant mounting holes. That's because all of its ports are located in the base.

You only get two video inputs (HDMI and DisplayPort), both of which are located at the rear of the base. They share space with three USB 3.0 ports (one upstream, two downstream), an Ethernet port (a rarity among desktop monitors), and the power jack. On the right side of the base are two more downstream USB 3.0 ports, and on the left side are headphone and microphone jacks. The base acts as a docking station for your notebook, delivering Ethernet, USB, and audio connectivity via a single USB cable. It is also home to two relatively loud 5 Watt speakers.

Four of the five aforementioned buttons are used to access and navigate the settings menus (the fifth button is the power switch). The S2340T uses the same excellent on-screen labelling system employed by Dell's UltraSharp U3014 and UltraSharp U2713HM models; touching any button launches a menu that corresponds to each button, making it easy to work your way through the settings menus.

The S2340T gives you seven picture presets including Standard, Multimedia, Game, Movie, Text, Warm, and Cool. There's also a Custom Colour preset for users who prefer to create their own colour mode. Brightness, Contrast, Hue, and Saturation adjustments are also available, as are Sharpness and Aspect Ratio settings. The Energy Smart option enables dynamic dimming that reacts to the amount of bright areas on the screen, and the Green Mode option helps conserve power by disabling advanced USB features.

Dell covers the S2340T with an extraordinary four year warranty. The monitor ships with HDMI, DisplayPort, and USB (upstream) cables as well as a resource CD and a Quick Start Guide.

Performance

The S2340T's multi-touch screen was a pleasure to use; pinching, tapping, and stretching gestures worked perfectly, as did swipe and scroll movements. Entering text using the on-screen keyboard was comfortable, especially when the panel was tilted backwards.

Colour accuracy was good but not perfect. On the CIE (International Committee on Illumination) chromaticity chart below, the closer each colour dot is to its corresponding box, the better the colour accuracy. Reds and blues were very accurate but greens were a little off.

This is not uncommon with desktop monitors, and in this case the flaw does not translate to tinting or skewed skin tones. In fact, image quality was superb while watching Blu-ray movies; flesh tones in the movie 2012 were natural looking and colours were deep and well defined. That said, if you absolutely must have spot-on colour accuracy you can try calibrating the monitor, or consider investing in a professional grade monitor such as the NEC MultiSync PA301W or Dell U3014.

The panel did a good job of rendering each shade of grey on the DisplayMate 64-step Greyscale test, but the darkest shade of grey could have been a bit darker. Viewing angles were typical of an IPS panel; colours remained intact from any angle and the picture suffered no significant loss of luminance when viewed from the top, bottom, or side.

The S2340T averaged 26 Watts of power usage during testing, which is on par with the 23in Acer and Viewsonic touchscreen models. I was able to lower that number to 23 Watts by enabling the Energy Smart dynamic dimming option, but couldn't get it as low as the Viewsonic's Optimise ECO mode (16 Watts) or the Acer's ECO mode (18 Watts).

Verdict

The Dell S2340T is a sharp looking 23in touchscreen monitor that is optimised for Windows 8. It offers robust IPS colour quality, solid greyscale performance, and outstanding 10-point projected capacitive touch technology. The addition of a webcam and an Ethernet port are nice touches, but a third video input would be welcome here.

Moreover, at £619 it's very expensive for a 23in monitor, even one with touchscreen capabilities and a generous feature set. If you want a 23in touchscreen monitor, you’d be better off looking at the Acer T232HL, which also offers solid IPS performance, responsive 10-point touch technology, and a USB hub – but it doesn't double as a docking station or have a webcam. However, the Acer display is over £200 cheaper than the S2340T, a very substantial saving.

Specifications

Manufacturer and Model

Dell S2340T

Native Resolution

1920 x 1080

PC Interfaces

HDMI, DisplayPort

Video Inputs

HDMI

Diagonal Screen Size

23in

Aspect Ratio

16:9

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