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BenQ's current gen FP241W: PVA, P-MVA or A-MVA?

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March 13, 2007 11:23:40 AM

Hi2all!

I has assumed all along that BenQ's FP241W was an Premium MVA but found that at least one source listed it as being a S-PVA panel...?!? So which one is it, after all?

Assuming you were to buy an FP241W today (and assuming it's MVA, not PVA technology), what are the odds that it would be equipped with AUO's new A-MVA panel?

Last but certainly not least, anyone know if BenQ added 1:1 support to all current gen FP241Ws (regardless of sales Region, eg. U.S. EU, etc.)?

Thx y'all,
March 15, 2007 5:20:37 AM

I too have been considering the FP241W.

I did some research last week concerning the panel used in this LCD. I believe it uses a P-MVA made by AUO. The confusion could have started from rumored reports of pre-production models that used Samsung S-PVA panels.

To add validity to the use of AUO panels, BenQ does own shares in that company so it is logical that they would want to use panels from a company that they have a vested interest in.

I also recalled reading statement from BenQ that confirmed the fact they are using an AUO panel, but I can't find that article. I have to admit it did take at least 3 hours of research to find that article. Unfortunately I did not bookmark it. A-MVA panels were not mentioned in the article so there is no chance they are or will be used.

BenQ has updated the firmware of the FP241W as of January 2007. But it seems there are still plenty of FP241W stock out there with the November 2006 firmware. Customers over at Newegg.com (USA) have stated that recently purchased monitors (March 2007) still have the Nov. 2006 firmware. Therefore, it is still a shot in the dark.

http://www.tftcentral.co.uk/news.htm#fp241w_firmware

The new FP241WZ model does support 1:1 aspect ratio, but it is slightly more expensive. It also add BFI which may or may not be to everyone's liking.
March 15, 2007 10:51:29 AM

Quote:
I too have been considering the FP241W. ... BenQ has updated the firmware of the FP241W as of January 2007. But it seems there are still plenty of FP241W stock out there with the November 2006 firmware. ... still a shot in the dark.


Hey, thx for the input :) 

I asked my favorite HW dealer to ask their distributor (who in turn asked BenQ EU) and the distributor says that they should have 1:1 pixel mapping... so that's at least a positive note if not a guarantee set in stone.

In any case, I've taken the plunge and will pick it [an FP241W] up today :D  Should it turn out not to have 1:1, I may opt to "threaten" BenQ with an actual visit & demand for the firmware upgrade at their front door!!!
March 15, 2007 4:20:20 PM

Remember, you don't need 1:1 on an LCD if you use it on a computer. The video card drivers can force 1:1.
March 15, 2007 11:46:30 PM

Quote:
Remember, you don't need 1:1 ...

Maybe...
...but I got it
:D 

Most importantly is that the label on the packaging box from the distributor (BenQ Europe B.V - Netherlands) had the manufacturing date of Jan. 2007 & revision was B4-125.

More details to follow...!
March 21, 2007 11:10:20 AM

Quote:
More details to follow...!


Well ok, I'm no where near done with my testing per say, but I can at least mention a few things about the FP241W:

-It's big. I'm talkin' panel real estate of course, and coming from a 19" CRT, the 1920x1200 spread over 24" is absolutely wonderful :D 

-It's bright, maybe towards silly levels, that is, until you play a high-dynamic range DVD - then you will apreciate all those nits ;) 

-Colors look great off the shelf, even better after I adjusted the monitor with a Colorvision Spyder II Express. Unfortunately the panel is still too bright to work with - even after the adjustments (which require that you reset the monitor to default brightness and contrast levels, etc). I may have to change the monitor's default from 90 to 50 and run the adjustments again...

-Movie (DVD) playback is great. There is some "sparkling" in specifc textures like moving water surfaces which are highlited bz sunlight etc. but you don't really notice it unless your'e looking for it.

-Blackness-ness... not good. My default Windows background is black and when viewing the desktop in the evening, it looks "muddy", for lack of a better term. When viewing anthing other than a black background (incl. black & white photographs), everything looks smoothly illuminated, so I guess this is the classic trait of a MVA panel.
When I watch TV or a DVD, I use the monitor's "movie" mode which jacks up the contrast and then the black borders (for a 16:9 movie) are then really black :D 

-Games: I play mostly FPS but I'm no Counterstrike / UT / Q3A master so I probably don't react as fast as such players. Long story short, games look great on this monitor - even the blacks are fine - and that's when using the standard mode (there is a Dynamic mode which I have yet to test out).
Not a trait of this specific monitor but of generally wide + silly resolution/capable monitors: gaming rocks on a big wide, hi-res screen :D  I played Doom3 at 1600x1200 1:1 and HL2 at 1920x1200 1:1 and oh what an experience that was!!! HL2 was a bit slow at that res, so I dropped it to 1680x1050 and that was big enough :) 

-Ergonomics: It's true that it would be nice to be able to drop the screen another inch or two and for my own personal usage I would have liked more swivel (the FP241W has 45/45) but otherwise, solid build and good functionality.

Well, that's it for now. My first impression is VERY positive! I will be doing more serious testing (Photoshop, etc) as well as external devices (to test the composite and other connections) next.
March 21, 2007 4:31:18 PM

Cool.

Once you finish calibrating your BenQ FP241W you should post your calibration settings so that other people who buys this monitor can benefit from your Colorvision Spyder II.

Unfortunately, it won't help me since I'm considering the WZ model which supposedly has a "redder" default setting.

Also, out of curiosity, is it possible to disable AMA (BenQ's version of OverDrive). It'll slow down the response times, but it also increase color accuracy since the pixels will not be overvolted to achieve faster response times.

Thx. :D 
March 21, 2007 5:17:25 PM

Quote:
Also, out of curiosity, is it possible to disable AMA (BenQ's version of OverDrive). It'll slow down the response times, but it also increase color accuracy since the pixels will not be overvolted to achieve faster response times.

Of course this all depends on how well they made the overdrive. In theory, if overdrive is done right, then it won't result in overdrive errors. You can actually see examples of this on panels like the NEC 20WGX2, where many of the transitions have no overdrive errors; unfortunately, some transitions do have big overdrive errors. Out of the ones tested on xbitlabs.com, there always seems to be a little bit of error in panels with overdrive. However, you can also get panels with very low overdrive errors across the board, like the AL2032WA, ACER F-20, and 970P.
March 21, 2007 5:45:39 PM

Unfortunately, theory and real world are different. That's why I generally assume that OverDrive will cause some level of color distortion.

I'm probably over analyzing things since I'm not graphic artist of any sort. I'm just researching 24" LCDs for general usage and playing a few games. But I want to know that my money is going towards something that can meet my visual expectations.

Hell, I spent 3 - 4 months doing research on power supplies before I decided to by my Seasonic S12 500 back in 2005.
March 22, 2007 12:15:39 AM

Quote:
I got it Very Happy

Most importantly is that the label on the packaging box from the distributor (BenQ Europe B.V - Netherlands) had the manufacturing date of Jan. 2007 & revision was B4-125.

More details to follow...!

Traveller, do you suppose you could answer some questions about your new monitor? I am curious as to what the BFI is like. So... here goes...

* Are you familiar with refresh rates on a CRT?
* If so, can you notice lower refresh rates like 60Hz and 72Hz vs higher refresh rates? In other words, can you spot when the refresh rate is too low?
* Do low refresh rates make you nauseated?

Now about the LCD?
* Can you notice a flicker from the refresh? Can you spot a flickering effect in your peripheral vision like you might have been able to on a CRT?
* Does it cause you problems?
March 22, 2007 3:23:40 PM

Quote:
...is it possible to disable AMA (BenQ's version of OverDrive).

Hi & no, I did not note any possibility (via the OSD) to toggle AMA. Furthermore, although the monitor is DDC/CI compatible, there is no software version of the OSD. Besides the new Display Mode entry which allows you to select among Full, Aspect and 1:1, there is no other change in the OSD Menu.

Also, as I mentioned in my last post, there's a Dynamics mode, which, according to the User Guide, is used for "viewing landscape-specific videos and playing games". I selected it while playing F.E.A.R. SP but to tell you the truth, I didn't note any difference (asisde from a color-contrast shift which applies to the Movie & Photo modes too).



Quote:
Traveller, do you suppose you could answer some questions...

Hi & sorry, but I bought an FP241W, not FP241WZ (sorry if I mislead you somehow). None the less, I will answer the Qs about refresh rates: yes [CRT] refresh rates of less than 75HZ drive me nuts and thus I was not at all thrilled about BFI tech and would prefer to save my money* for a future 100/120HZ-tech panel.
*The Fp241WZ should hit the EU market at around € 1200-1400 making it a whole lot more than the "aging" FP241W which I payed €880 for... .
March 27, 2007 12:52:07 PM

Quote:
... I adjusted the monitor with a Colorvision Spyder II Express. Unfortunately the panel is still too bright to work with - even after the adjustments (which require that you reset the monitor to default brightness and contrast levels, etc). I may have to change the monitor's default from 90 to 50 and run the adjustments again...

I tried to re-calibrated the monitor two more times, one with brightness lowered to 50 and the second time with brightness lowered to 29 and I'm still being blinded by the monitor when working with text... :( 

Note that this calibration tool allows you to manually set brightness and contrast values based on short black2grey and grey2white scales respectively - but only for CRTs. LCDs (appearantly) do not have "true" brightness and contrast adjustments (...whatever that means) and thus you are not given the option to set anything manually...!

The Spyder's calibration is perfect for movies, games & digital imaging, but does not lower the brightness enough for text (Documents, WWW, etc.). I may have to end up manually adjusting the brightness when working with such documents, although this will, by definition, alter the calibration.

Of course, I will simply return the brightness and/or contrast values back to their "claibrated" values when I'm done with my text work, but this hardly seems to be a proper solution... :cry: 
!