Introducing the Dell U2412M

For every monitor review that I’ve done for AnandTech so far, I know that as soon as I check the comments there will be a thread with the same theme: “I don’t care about 1080p monitors, I only want 16:10 aspect ratios!” When widescreen displays first came out for desktop LCD monitors, virtually every model was a 16:10 display. The 20” Dell I have on my own desk is 16:10, and almost every vendor made 16:10 panels.

As the price of flat panels dropped and HDTV adoption took over, more and more desktop panels migrated to the HDTV aspect ratio of 16:9. The reasons behind this were easy to understand, as you could produce more displays, reuse panels across PC and TV lines, and have a lower cost across the board to let you sell them for less. Most people were more than happy to pay less for a display than to pay 2-3 times as much for those extra 120 pixels at the bottom of a display. As this happened, 16:10 panels became relegated to higher end models, almost always as IPS panels and often with high end features like AdobeRGB colorspace support and more.

Dell finally decided to address this with their U2412M display that features a 1920x1200 on its 24” panel. The U2412M is also an eIPS panel that is natively 6-bit but uses A-FRC to display 16.7 million colors. Dell has managed to bring this monitor in at $329 and can often be found on sale for under $300, while most other 16:10 24” panels come in at $500 or more. What did Dell have to do to hit this aggressive price point? Let's find out, starting with the specifications overview.

Dell U2412M Specifications
Video Inputs D-sub, DVI, DisplayPort
Panel Type eIPS
Pixel Pitch 0.27 mm
Colors 16.7 Million (6-bit with A-FRC)
Brightness 300 nits
Contrast Ratio 1000:1 (Typical)
Response Time 8ms GTG
Viewable Size 24"
Resolution 1920x1200
Viewing Angle 178 H, 178 V
Backlight LED
Power Consumption (operation) 38W
Power Consumption (standby) Not Listed
Screen Treatment Anti-Glare with Hard Coat 3H
Height-Adjustable Yes, 4.5" of adjustment
Tilt Yes
Pivot Yes
Swivel Yes
VESA Wall Mounting Yes, 100mm VESA
Dimensions w/ Base (WxHxD) 20.22" x 21.89" x 7.10"
Weight 8.73 lbs. without stand
Additional Features 4 port USB Hub, Power Management Software
Limited Warranty 3 Years
Accessories Power Cable, DVI Cable, USB Cable, VGA Cable
Price $329 at Dell.com

The stand with the U2412M is very adjustable, with tilt, swivel, pivot, and height adjustments available to the user. There is a 4-port USB 2.0 hub with two ports on the bottom of the display and two that are more accessible on the side of the display. The one port you might find missing is an HDMI port, but as the HDMI port is trademarked and requires licensing fees, and adds nothing that other ports don’t offer on a display with no speakers, I’m not particularly sad about the loss. Most HDMI transmitter chips are limited to 1920x1080 resolution as well and that would just be another cost that really adds no benefit. DisplayPort is starting to become more and more common now and I’d prefer to see those ports instead.

Dell U2412M Design, OSD, and Viewing Angles
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  • DarkUltra - Tuesday, February 28, 2012 - link

    - I know that as soon as I check the comments there will be a thread with the same theme: “I don’t care about 1080p monitors, I only want 16:10 aspect ratios!”

    And don't forget the 120hz thread! You really should mention 120hz in your reviews, it should affect the manufacturers and readers so we can move to this new standard. Even as slow as 8ms gtg response time will benefit as 1000/120=8,33. The pixels change sooner, too. But lower response time will make things look sharper when they are moved around.
    Reply
  • DarkUltra - Tuesday, February 28, 2012 - link

    120Hz will drastically improve your desktop and gaming experience. Here is a few reviews and testimonies.

    - Wonder in amazement as the 120Hz display produces an easily observable higher fluidity in the animation.
    techreport.com/articles.x/21516

    - The ASUS VG236H was my first exposure to 120Hz refresh displays that aren’t CRTs, and the difference is about as subtle as a dump truck driving through your living room. www.anandtech.com/show/3842/asus-vg236h- review-our-first-look-at-120hz

    - Doing precise image editing, as another example, is an area where faster display processing times are desirable. www.anandtech.com/show/2787

    - 120hz lcd Smoother motion and the lack of RTC artifacts leave a highly positive impression, making you unwilling to return to 60Hz. www.xbitlabs.com/articles/monitors/display/ samsung-sm2233rz_5.html

    - I ran Fraps and found using the display’s 120hz mode that once the framerates were up above 80 there is an amazing solidity and 3d- like quality to the gameplay. Once the framerate hits 100+ – well, the effect has to be experienced to understand it. hardforum.com/showthread.php? t=1486357&page=4

    - I saw a 120hz monitor at my local MicroCenter and was totally amazed by how smooth the mouse moved on the desktop, makes my 60hz monitor looks absolutely dated. http://hardforum.com:80/showthread.php?t=1466381&a...

    jooh.no/index.php/2012/01/05/lg-w2363d-120hz-monitor/
    Reply
  • Sabresiberian - Tuesday, February 28, 2012 - link

    Very nicely written, thanks Dark! Reply
  • colonelclaw - Tuesday, February 28, 2012 - link

    Meh, so now I want 120Hz too.
    Any news on whether 16:10 IPS panels are headed towards 120Hz?
    Reply
  • peterwargo - Tuesday, February 28, 2012 - link

    I just bought one of these last week when there was a good discount code available from Dell. I've been looking for years for a decent 24" 16:10 screen for my Mac Pro, as my aging Samsung isn't really that happy anymore. But I love the form factor, and being visually-handicapped, good contrast control and clarity are a big deal for me.

    I'm a Mac user 90% of the time, but I've never been happy having had both the 24" and 27" LED cinema displays on my work machine. The glare is annoying, and I'm really cheesed off at Apple for providing only one input (MDP) and a short cable as well. Then, there's the price.

    Frankly, I'm in love the this screen. The anti-glare is excellent, and the contrast is every bit as good as the Apple screens (tried 'em side-by-side). Additionally, the menus are reality easy to read and navigate -- again useful if you're visually handicapped. I still haven't found a fast way to switch inputs (gotta really read that manual), but that's a minor nit -- I don't often switch between my Mac Pro and my Linux box.

    Speaking of connectivity, I was able to find a decent MDP->DP cable on Amazon for $6 or so, and it works fine with the Radeon 5780's MDP on the pro. No issues, leaving the DVI and VGA ports free for other machines.

    The best part is that I paid less than 1/3 of the cost of the 27" Apple display, and far, far less than even a used 24" Apple display. I think I need one at work now.
    Reply
  • Voo - Tuesday, February 28, 2012 - link

    I assume the monitor comes with different profiles like the more high-end dells,

    Could you test the input lag with the game profile? I heard some claims that that reduces the input lag to some degree, so it'd be interesting to see whether this is true and to what degree it helps.
    Reply
  • JarredWalton - Tuesday, February 28, 2012 - link

    My past experience is that unless the LCD is *really* slow on internal processing, the "game modes" rarely have a noticeable impact on lag. Reply
  • cheinonen - Tuesday, February 28, 2012 - link

    Since the internal lag was just around 2 ms, even if there is a game mode that improves it, the most you can see is 1-2 ms of performance, which is really meaningless IMO. Perhaps if the lag was 15ms or something much larger, but 1-2ms of gain is the most you could see with this. Reply
  • Voo - Wednesday, February 29, 2012 - link

    I thought maybe there was something they could also do about the panel response time, but it makes sense that that doesn't work. And reducing up to 2ms is rather uninteresting then.

    Thanks.
    Reply
  • dingetje - Tuesday, February 28, 2012 - link

    thanks for reviewing a 16:10 monitor that's also affordable.
    next time you review a 16:9 screen I won't bitch about the review ;)
    Reply

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