OSD Menus

Dell has had a nice OSD setup for a couple of generations now that uses four soft keys to control all the settings. Brightness and Contrast of course allows access to those controls, but the majority of the settings are located under the Color Settings menu. Input Color Format can switch between RGB and YCbCr when using the DVI input. Gamma allows a choice between PC gamma (typically 2.2) and Mac (1.8)—though note that since OSX 10.6 the Mac gamma standard has changed to the more common 2.2 gamma setting. Mode selection allows you to choose between Standard, Multimedia, Game, Warm, Cool, and Custom (RGB) modes. If you choose the Custom mode you get the option to calibrate the white balance at a single point using Red, Green and Blue gain controls. Here's a gallery of the various OSD settings.

If you are using any input other than the DSUB15, most of the choices under Display Settings are locked off since they aren’t needed with a digital video signal. Other settings simply allow you to customize the menu interface, including position, time out, transparency, and switching between landscape and portrait orientations. Finally the personalization menu will let you change the default behaviors of the soft buttons to whatever settings you need to frequently access, though Auto-Adjust and Input Source are the only two choices available beyond the defaults. A quick selection of Portrait/Landscape orientation for the menu would also be nice for people that often move the monitor position around.

For an in-monitor calibration, the Dell offers very little beyond the single RGB control if you are in custom mode. This does let you dial in a specific point (I chose pure white) to the D65 standard, or another color temperature if that is required. Beyond this, the gamma only offers two settings and there is no RGB Low option for calibrating another point, so this is as far as you can go without using software for the calibration.

Viewing Angles

One of the hallmarks for IPS displays has been wide viewing angles and the Dell 2311H keeps this up. Moving off to the sides, and from top to bottom, brightness and color stay at very good levels until you start to move to extreme angles where you wouldn’t be able to use the display for work anyway. This also allows you to easily use the monitor in the portrait orientation without having large color or brightness shifts while reading or editing a document. As panels gets larger, having these viewing angles becomes more and more important.

Dell U2311H: Initial Impressions Dell U2311H: Color Accuracy
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  • jabber - Tuesday, September 27, 2011 - link

    ...with just buying a PVA panel instead?
  • Aphelion02 - Tuesday, September 27, 2011 - link

    Nice article, but so late as to be dangerously close to being irrelevant. A large amount of people who might have found this useful have already made their purchasing decisions almost a year ago. I have noticed this as quite a trend at AT, with this article and the P8P68 mobo review as being most striking. At some point, the added value of a late review is so minimal you are better off spending the effort on something else.
  • dingetje - Tuesday, September 27, 2011 - link

    more 1920x1080 reviews?
    I like Dell, but here's what I think: they can shove all their 16:9 panels up their @$$
  • A5 - Tuesday, September 27, 2011 - link

    Cool story bro.

    The market has spoken, and they want cheap 16:9 1080p monitors. Dell isn't going to make a 16:10 monitor that won't sell to satisfy you.
  • Makaveli - Tuesday, September 27, 2011 - link

    Its funny you say that cause Dell already has a 16:10 24' model that is superior to this.

    The market is also full of dumb ass best buy shoppers!
  • Dug - Tuesday, September 27, 2011 - link

    The market hasn't spoken,
    No one I have ever spoken too prefers 16:9 to 16:10
    And that sentiment is echoed in every forum I come across.
    16:9 is what has been shoved down our throats
  • user1003 - Tuesday, September 27, 2011 - link

    This monitor is horrible. The whole stand is nice and adjustable, but the panel itself is plagued with a lot of problems, among them:

    - tinting (google it, it's a problem with the whole series, and the 24" series too). there are yellow stripes at the screen borders and the whole left side is slightly tinted yellow, too. the area effected by the tinting differs, but a lot of the U23 and U24 Dells have this problem
    - the anti glare coating distorts small details like fonts
    - the PSU makes a loud humming noise when set to <95% brightness, so you either become blind or deaf
    - clouding at the edges

    Some of them are better than others so you could get lucky (and let's face it, they sent Anandtech a good one for testing), but overall this monitor just sucks, even considering the low price.
  • jecs - Tuesday, September 27, 2011 - link

    That is too bad. But also makes me feel safe with the higher quality 2470 ultrasharp. This screen is working very well, I have a lot of input connectors to choose from, 1920 x 1200 screen and I have 0 problems after a year of use. But, also remember this new matrices may still be 6 bits for color depth and that LED panels are good on power consumption but not very good for precision color. However I don't know why Dell is having such a product on the market if it not ready. It also makes me wonder if Dell is lowering the quality to appeal to new audiences but instead is disappointing loyal customers.
  • tech6 - Tuesday, September 27, 2011 - link

    To all those who complain that this panel is far from perfect for design work: I would have to agree but that's not the market it aims for. For starters, any 1080 panel is no good for layout work so if that's what you're looking for there are a number of $500+ monitors that will meet your needs. This panel is designed as an upgrade to mediocre $200 TN monitors and it does a great job and it does a great job. We bought a number of these for the office last year and they put all other TN panels to shame. For those considering a 1080 work or home display, this is a high quality bargain.
  • Miggleness - Tuesday, September 27, 2011 - link

    I've had this monitor for over a year now, hope you can do a followup and put the U2312 to the test as well. You'd definitely be able to get a good assessment on it's improvements over the U2311 (if any) while this review is fresh.

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