“The box the XL2420Z arrives in nearly as big as my youngest child”.
That was the first thing that came to mind when tasked with taking a look at the utter behemoth that is the XL branded monitor itself. It’s enormous, it’s high-end, and it’s an expensive extravagance (around £300), but it’s one that (and I’m sorry about this) you’re probably going to want now, too.
Aside from the fact it carries the usual Benq stamp of great picture quality, it has a plethora of unique, interesting additions that elevate it into that high priced bracket. Starting with the simple, yet genius, idea of a headphone hook on the back of the monitor. Currently, instead of hanging my headphones on my uplight like a common criminal, they are hanging on a discreet hook behind the monitor. Oh yes, simple and elegant are words I want to use here, but it’s so bloody big it’s hard to say elegant with a straight face.
Something I’ve never actually experienced before, is an S-Switch. This connects to the Benq and allows you to quickly access specific options from within the monitor’s menus. It’s small and inoffensive, and while you won’t be using it every few minutes, it’s an interesting option for those that will use the 24 inch beauty for more than just one thing. The S-Switch can connect to the side of the monitor’s stand (it’s magnetic) or you can just pop it on your desk somewhere.
Being an expensive monitor, the controls are touch based, adding a bit of class, though I personally prefer the old fashioned push/press buttons. I was unable to test the 3D Vision support, but I’m reassured that it’s great, and works well. Hurrah.
Interestingly, the left side of the monitor hosts two USB 2.0 ports along with an jack for headphones, and there’s plenty of input ports on the back: VGA, DVI, 2 x HDMI, another USB, etc. What I’m saying here is, whatever your setup, you’re catered for. It even comes with a nice dust cover for when you’re not using it – and it’s got a hole in the bag so you can carry it like this, too.
Fans of Shmups will be excited to know that the monitor itself can be swivelled around to portrait viewing, and there’s generally a nice amount of movement, allowing you to adjust it to suit your preferred viewing angle or height.
I’m sure there are better monitors out there, maybe even for a cheaper buy-in cost, but if you’re serious about PC gaming, and in the market for a new, high-end market, the XL-Z series must be on your radar. There’s little to find fault with here, though you’ll almost certainly have to tweak it to suit your preferred settings, but at the price, this is a major investment, and the Rolls Royce of monitors.
Review sample provided by Benq.