ASUS VG23AH Monitor Review


Today we are looking at one of the latest monitors from Asus, the VG23AH. This IPS LED backlit 3D capable 23 inch screen runs at a native 1080p resolution (1920×1080). Thanks to ASUS ‘All-in 3D Technology’ the panel can convert traditional 2D content to 3D. Available at around £260 inc vat in the United Kingdom, should this be on a shortlist for your latest system?
Product Overview:
  • Full HD 1080p, 3D LED-backlit IPS monitor with 178° ultra-wide viewing angle
  • ASUS All-in 3D Technology with instant 2D to 3D conversion via a designated hotkey for immersive stereoscopic 3D visuals
  • Cinematic 3D home experience with an ultra-crisp and -smooth display, and audio from built-in 3W stereo speakers
  • Vivid colors performance with 80,000,000:1 ASUS Contrast Ratio and Splendid™ Video Intelligence Technology
  • Extensive connectivity with dual HDMI 1.4, single-link DVI and D-sub
  • A comfortable viewing experience with ergonomic design and the bundled ASUS 3D and 3D clip-on glasses
The ASUS VG23AH Monitor ships in a long, full colour box with the product highlighted in the corner and a list of specifications underneath. The box weighs 9.7 kg.
The bundle includes a user manual, warranty card, regional specific power cable, a DVI cable, VGA cable and audio cable. ASUS include a box with two pairs of 3D glasses (1 pair of Polarized 3D Glasses and 1 pair of Clip-on Polarized 3D Glasses) and a cleaning cloth. They also include a screw which is used to mount the base of the stand to the main unit.
Surprisingly there is no HDMI cable included, I think most people would prefer this now to a VGA cable.
With the accessories is a large circular stand with a ’3D’ logo in the middle. This is the base which needs screwed into main stand as shown in the image above right.
The VG23AH isn’t the most attractive screen, looking quite ‘fat’ from various angles. It weighs 6.5 kg and measures 550.2 x 419.5 x 250mm. This screen includes Stereo Speakers : 3W x 2 Stereo RMS. The audio quality is certainly not going to replace a dedicated set of speakers, however for light use and space saving purposes they aren’t that bad.
From a side angle, the VG23AH does look rather porky.
It offers swivel, tilt and height adjustments as detailed above.
The Asus badge is clearly visible on the top section of the stand, from the rear. The panel can be mounted to a wall via VESA standards. There is a substantial level of height adjustment offered, around 10cms.
Along the bottom of the VG23AH is an ‘HDMI’ logo, far left and the ‘ASUS’ logo in the center. On the far right is the control panel which we will look at shortly.
Along the back of the panel are:
Signal Input : HDMI 1.4 x 2, D-Sub, DVI-D
PC Audio Input : 3.5mm Mini-Jack
AV Audio Input : HDMI
Audio Output : HDMI
Earphone jack : 3.5mm Mini-Jack
Sadly there is no DisplayPort connector, this is only available on the high end ASUS panels.
On this page we present some super high resolution images of the product taken with the 24.5MP Nikon D3X camera and 24-70mm ED lens. These will take much longer to open due to the dimensions, especially on slower connections. If you use these pictures on another site or publication, please credit Kitguru.net as the owner/source.
The interface panel, bottom right is a little fiddly to work with, as the buttons are underneath the bezel at the bottom. They require a heavy hand to activate and I found myself moving the screen completely when I was pushing them. It is easier to hold the top of the screen while pressing them.
The buttons offer preset colour modes, 3D on or off, Main menu system, input selection and power.
The colour modes cover a wide gamut of settings to suit a variety of situations. The sRGB mode seemed to deliver the most accurate colours, and the theater and Scenery modes were useful for watching high definition video and for viewing pictures. Game Mode is designed for gamers who are susceptible to motion blur.
The 3D button allows the user to change standard 2D images into 3D. There is around a 4-5 second delay when pressing this button as the panel switches to the other mode. Obviously if you are looking at this without the relevant glasses, you get a ‘fuzzy’ image, as seen above (right).
We found that this 2D-3D mode didn’t work wonderfully well and that dedicated 3D content always looked much better. Much as we would have expected.
The VG23AH panel has several sub menu sections to cover a wide gamut of fine tuning. The first ‘Splendid’ panel is used to switch between the various modes. The ‘Color’ sub menu is only available when specific presets are used. The ‘Image’ menu offers several useful settings, such as a trace free panel to help minimise any motion blur. The remaining menus offer fine tuning for the interface panels and input selection.
To test today, we are using a LaCie calibration gun along with specific software to accurately measure the readings.
We also tested the VG23AH under ‘real world conditions’ via one of the HDMI connectors paired up with a high end Core i7 laptop featuring Nvidia Quadro 4000M discrete graphics.
The screen surface is not highly reflective meaning that it is easy enough to view under a wide variety of environmental lighting conditions.
We measured the Gamut out of the box in sRGB mode and the VG23AH panel returned a reading of 2.16 which is a decent result. We manually adjusted the gamma to 1.8 and the screen returned a 1.77 result.
Colour response from this panel was quite good, with a minor 2% red cast across the image area.
We measured 95% coverage of sRGB which indicates good colour performance for artists and designers. That said, the Asus PA248Q ProArt delivered much better results.
Colour accuracy throughout testing was not exceptional for an IPS panel and we would class the VG23AH as only slightly above average. Off axis performance is strong however  and we measured 176° angles with only very minor colour shift.
Black Definition is quite good, although there is a shift between +10% and +25%, this is slightly noticeable to the naked eye. The outer edges register up to 30%, specifically in the corners. It is noticeable and slightly distracting with high definition media featuring black backgrounds, such as science fiction material. There is also a slight shift patch with our review sample, across the center line, offset to the right.
This pooling is not easy to notice with the naked eye, but once we found it, it was rather difficult to ignore. With only one sample at hand it is hard to tell if we just ended up with a weak sample in this regard.
We tested under real world conditions with the bluray disc of Sunshine and noticed fairly high shifting across the full width of the panel. The edges of the panel looked a very dark grey, rather than a pure black which can make such material even more enjoyable.
Asus use a system called Smart Contrast Ratio which is said to deliver 80,000,000:1 and 250 Cd/m² of brightness.
White purity delivered an average result. There is a 10-15 percent shift across most of the panel, meaning that a pure white will never look that ‘clean’. At the edges this rises to around 20% with some areas close to the corners around 25%. There is some pooling, recordable in the extreme edges … this falls short of the PA248Q which we tested in early July.
Uniformity is average and bleeding is slightly noticeable. Colour Fluctuation was maintained quite well, with minor fluctuation and emphasis on the red channel.
For gaming, I didn’t notice any concerns to the naked eye. ASUS rate the panel at 5ms (GTG). This is a panel which is built for gaming however and the concerns listed above are less important when playing a first person shooter.
We tested the screen with native 3D content running via a GTX680 and the results were excellent. The FPR 3D glasses don’t flicker at all thanks to the fact they receive the images for the left and right eye simultaneously. ASUS have designed these themselves and the quality is first class. The screen is much more impressive when dealing with 3D content, than 2D.
We measured brightness of 244 cd/m².
The ASUS VG23AH Monitor demanded 28 watts after calibration which is an excellent result for an IPS screen.
The ASUS VG23AH Monitor is clearly designed to deal with 3D content and in this regard it is a complete success and one of the finest 3D monitors I have tested. With the proprietary Asus FPR glasses, high definition games and movies really do come to life. I thoroughly enjoyed gaming with this screen, especially as I didn’t have to deal with any annoying flicker either.
If you are looking for a computer screen just for 3D entertainment then this would easily score 9 out of 10 and we could end the review on a very happy, positive note.
Unfortunately, it isn’t that straightforward as I was not completely enamored with the standard 2D prowess of the panel.
On a positive note, the viewing angles are just as good as the PA248Q which I reviewed a couple of weeks ago, however the panel consistency is not in the same class. Black Definition across the full width of the panel highlights a moderate amount of shift, especially in the corners.
This is particularly noticeable with science fiction material or media that is shot at night, with dusky, moody lighting. If, like me, you are anal retentive then you may want to look elsewhere as I was spending a large portion of time analysing the issues.
Once I find a weakness with a screen my eyes tend to focus on it, almost completely. I found myself looking for panel inconsistencies when viewing high definition movies and it ended up rather distracting and detrimental to my enjoyment.
Additionally, the appearance of the screen is rather unimaginative …. porky, not voluptuous by design. The menu panel at the bottom of the screen is also poorly designed requiring too much vertical force to actuate, often lifting the screen from the table top.
You can pick up this screen from Amazon for £246.18 inc vat.
Pros:
  • fantastic 3D qualities.
  • reasonable pricing.
  • great for gaming.
  • excellent power consumption.
  • we love the Asus FPR glasses.
Cons:
  • 2D aspects aren’t inspiring.
  • some backlighting concerns.
  • ugly design.
  • The selection panel at the bottom of the screen could be better.
  • No HDMI cable supplied, just VGA.
  • No DisplayPort.
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About Yomal Malinda

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