In Practice, Continued
What was disappointing, however, was the sound reproduction. It's true that 16:9 LCD panels aren't that easy to come by, and monitor makers have to get their panels where they can find them. But you feel you should be able to expect more top-of-the-line sound in this price range! The sound was dull, with very little bass, and cranking up the volume quickly led to distortion. Acer could have scored a point here, but they've missed the mark.
Here again we use a 5-point rating system. Latency plays a role here, but we also evaluate the amount of video noise induced in movies. Good viewing angles are also crucial for multimedia use.
Rather than estimate a quality/price ratio, we prefer to concentrate on the price/performance ratio. What's the difference? Quality in an LCD display is a perception that varies from one individual to another. A buyer who wants a monitor that's tough enough to take anywhere, even if its performance is mediocre, won't have the same ideas about quality as someone who wants a fast monitor and doesn't care all that much about its finish. On the other hand, performance is measurable. So this rating is a synthesis of the monitor's performance as compared to the Tom's Hardware benchmark.
What's our final assessment of the F20? In fact, the difference in performance from the Acer AL2032W, which we tested recently, wasn't significant. So if your budget is a little tight and you're hesitating between the two, you can rule out the Acer F20. Given what you get for the high price, the F20 will probably remain more a showpiece for Acer than anything else. Too bad, really, because the monitor's finish is excellent, as is the general concept behind it.
The overall score is the average of what the monitor scored throughout the test.