An LCD Screen to Start the Year: Hitachi CML174SXW


One swallow doesn't make a summer, and we only tested one monitor. We did so in an individual test rather than making it part of a comparative test, but we'll be doing that later. That's because we just couldn't wait any longer. We were beginning to sink beneath a pile of emails demanding that we test it without delay. Its features are better than anything we have seen up to now.

The claimed response time is 16 ms. And this is not even an error of the Compaq variety, you know, Compaq having conveniently forgotten (oops!) to add in the time taken to power up and down. No, the powering up time really is 12 ms and powering down is 4 ms, making a total of 16 ms! ViewSonic dreamed of doing it, Hitachi achieved it.

And that's not all. The CML174SXW claims a contrast of 400:1, a very good average at the present time, an almost record brightness of 260 cd/sq. m., and 160° horizontal and vertical angles of vision. These features would make more than one of its competitors shudder, beginning with two of our favorite monitors to which we compared it, the recent AS4314UTG from Iiyama and the always fabulous LM1711 from Solarism . To add icing on the cake, it has two video inputs, DVI and analog, and it's really good-looking, in that it meets current ergonomic criteria to the letter. It has a very thin profile, a very small base, the option of attaching the screen to an arm, control buttons on the front, etc. We find it unfortunate that the base cannot be detached in order to fix the monitor on two screws as easily as on the ProphetView 920 de Hercules .

It should be said in passing that these features are better than those of the MVA and IPS screens that are always wrongly considered as being better than TN + Film. The CML174SXW has a TN + Film screen. It belongs to the latest generation of AU-Optronics screens, whose previous version we only considered to be moderately sucessful. But here again, the Taiwanese manufacturer has outdone itself. On paper, the CML174SXW outperforms all of its competitors.

In fact, to be perfectly honest, we had been considering comparing two monitors, the Lite On Mercury 170 and this very alluring Hitachi CML174SXW. Unfortunately, despite waiting for four months, the 170 never arrived. Well, that's too bad, but all the better for the CML174SXW, which, in any case, amply deserves having a whole article devoted to it.