BenQ Australia FP71V
- Super-fast response times, great colour reproduction
- Limited display of dark blacks, yellows slightly washed out, may be fiddly for users without small hands
A performance-driven monitor, the FP71V's excellent response times and generally high quality images make it ideal for gamers and lovers of action movies. Users looking for high quality and precise images may find this BenQ model to be slightly inadequate.
Price$ 599.00 (AUD)
Buy now (Selling at 5 stores)
According to BenQ, the FP71V LCD monitor was "built to perform", and perform it does! With a lightning fast response time and an excellent range of colours, this 17" monitor delivers excellent functionality, especially for users interested in gaming and fast-paced video playback. An average contrast ratio and slightly uneven light distribution were the only faults we could detect on an otherwise sterling product.
Action is the name of the game with the FP71V. Its 4 millisecond response time (grey-to-grey) meant that ghosting was virtually undetectable in our tests and even the fastest moving images and action scenes we could throw at it remained smooth and clear. We were only able to detect the slightest levels of distortion when flicking quickly between images, but for the most part, BenQ managed to put their money where their mouth is when it comes to response times.
Unfortunately, a limited ability to display a solid and consistent range of blacks mars this excellent performance. The 500:1 contrast ratio generally made dark blacks very hard to differentiate from a pure black background, a problem which was especially noticeable when watching movies or videos with dark or atmospheric scenes. To its credit, the monitor was able to display a very respectable grey-scale, suffering only towards the darker end of the spectrum. Even our most strident efforts to calibrate the FP71V by adjusting brightness and contrast failed to give us a high-quality balance across a full range of greys, however we did note that the settings could be adjusted to suit the exact needs of a user as necessary.
Colour performance was another strong point of the FP71V display. Colours were rich and vibrant, for the most part, with only yellows appearing slightly muddy. The monitor was able to display a large range of separately defined colours, and apart from the slightly less-than-vibrant yellows, colour performance was excellent.
Luminance did let colour reproduction down slightly, as we found that it wasn't completely even across the entire screen. The distribution of light left the edges of the screen a little darker than the centre, and while this was only barely noticeable, we found that it did impact on the overall picture quality, especially when watching colourful or 'cartoony' video in full screen mode.
Physically, the monitor is attractive enough. A plastic silver bezel surrounds the screen, broadening at the base to accommodate in-built speakers. The speakers themselves are, well, monitor speakers. Nothing exceptional, but they do deliver listenable sound, with a respectably wide range of volumes. As far as connection options go, the FP71V delivers both D-Sub and DVI connectors, however a poor design has placed these directly behind the rather thick and non-adjustable black stand, making plugging in cables a frustrating exercise at best.
The only other concern we had was regarding the On-Screen Display (OSD), which was slightly unresponsive at times, and operated by a row of buttons on the base of the bezel, which could best be described as 'fiddly'. Regardless, all the appropriate options were available, and once adjusted, are able to be left pretty much alone.
The FP71V is built around a very solid platform of performance, with an incredibly fast response time, and very respectable image quality across the board. Its collection of slight faults does accumulate however, and demanding and professional users might find the FP71V to be ever-so-slightly below their requirements. On the whole, though, this is a very high-quality monitor, with a feature set that places it squarely on the desks of action-lovers.
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