Listing of July 1996 Reviews
By Catherine Silverman
For me, there's nothing worse than an eyestrain headache that
creeps up on you as the day wears on. Before you know it, staring
at a too-small or slightly flickery monitor takes its toll, and
you find yourself reaching for over-the-counter relief once too
often. Not so with the Panasonic PanaSync S17. I've been using
this 17-incher for several weeks now, and I'm loving it. Its 16-inch
viewable area doesn't overwhelm my desktop, and it delivers a
clear, crisp image with nary a flicker or stray ghost.
The PanaSync S17's front-panel controls and on-screen display
(OSD) are a snap to use and are among the monitor's best features.
No hidden thumbwheel controls here. Instead, four simple keys
control the OSD. With the first key, you can display the control
selection menu. The two center keys help you maneuver through
the menu of symbols. And the display doesn't leave you groping
for the meaning of the on-screen hieroglyphics: As you click on
it, each symbol is clearly labeled. Once you've made your selection,
the fourth key lets you display the control for that adjustment.
From the OSD, you can control contrast, brightness, manual degaussing,
memory recall, horizontal and vertical position and size, pincushioning,
trapezoidal and parallelogram adjustment, color selection and
adjustment, display frequency and video input level.
The flat, square monitor is Plug-and-Play compatible and uses
the VESA DDC standard. It is Energy Star-compliant, and all its
plastic parts are recyclable. It has a 0.27-millimeter dot pitch
and affords a resolution of 1280x1024 at 60Hz. The monitor measures
16.5 by 15.6 by 16.4 inches and weighs 38.6 pounds. The screen's
antiglare, antistatic, antireflective coating heightens picture
clarity. The documentation is thorough and easily understandable.
The PanaSync S17 aced virtually all the Sonera Technologies' DisplayMate
tests, with a sharp picture and balanced colors that were in focus
even to the screen's corners and edges. One exception was the
screen regulation test, which measures the monitor's ability to
hold an image constant despite rapid changes in the nearby brightness.
In this test, the outer frame jiggled somewhat. Some whirling
fingerprint-like patterns were also evident on the sparse-dot
moir... pattern test. Additionally, the midrange colors were a
bit off in the color scales test. But these are minor flaws not
evident in normal use.
I used to think I should buy stock in the makers of ibuprofen.
But since the PanaSync S17 has been sitting on my desk, I'm reevaluating
my investment strategy.
Panasonic PanaSync S17
Pros: Control panel; OSD
Cons: No moir adjustment
Platforms: Windows 95, 3.1x, NT
Panasonic Computer Peripheral Co.
WinMag Box Score: 4.0