AG Neovo H-W22 flat panel LCD monitor review

Want a 22-inch widescreen LCD for computing, gaming and watching movies? AG's latest contender could be the one for you

AG's Neovo H-W22 is the latest budget offering in the world of flat panel widescreen LCD monitors - useful for those who work from home and regularly have one or more applications open on their desktop at once, or alternatively those who watch a lot of movies or play games on their PCs.

While at first glance the Windows Certified screen's list of specification, including 1000:1 contrast ratio, 16.7 million colours, 300 cd/m2 brightness and maximum 1680x1050 resolution may not jump out as anything particularly revolutionary within this size and class of screen, not all feature integrated speakers like the H-W22 does, nor a faster than average three millisecond response time - the lower the number in theory the smoother the transitions, so more comfortable the viewing process particularly when watching DVDs.

The screen itself can be angled back and forwards to a limited degree, and the build feels reassuringly solid at a weight of 4.9kg with attractively slender matt black screen surround (or 'bezel') which concentrates the attention on the area given over to the display itself.

Our review sample arrived without the clip-on base stand, which made for tricky testing. Nevertheless the screen features both digital and analogue input around the back, courtesy of DVI and VGA (15-pin D-sub) ports respectively. The other two rear inputs are for audio and mains power, with leads provided for each. Though sadly there's no direct HDMI connectivity offered for High Definition devices (such as a Blu-ray player or HD camcorder), you wouldn't really expect that of a screen at this price point.

With operation of the H-W22 pretty much plug and play, thanks to auto adjustment functionality users can be set up and using the monitor in a thrice. If we've one grumble - and it isn't a big one - it's that although a quick start pamphlet is provided out of the box to get things initially up and running, the AG Neovo H-W22's full manual is provided on CD ROM only.

Operation and adjustment is via a row of five lozenge shaped buttons located directly beneath the screen at the front - so happily there's no need to reach awkwardly under the rim or around the side here to affect any settings. Although the actual markings are far from clear, the central button is power on/off, while a single press of the far left button prompts the screen to auto adjust picture size and format.

A single press again of the button next to this turns the sound from the integrated stereo speakers on or off, and, marked with a '-' is also used to turn down volume, brightness and other key settings.

The first control to the right of central power button brings up said volume slider, while pressing the final, fifth button on the far right brings up an onscreen box containing the main menu display.

By selecting one of a series of icons running around the internal edges of said box, users have the opportunity to variously tweak brightness, contrast, horizontal and vertical screen position, sharpness, colour temperature (via individual red, green and blue channels). Screen format can be switched from 16:9 widescreen ratio to regular 4:3 if so desired.

Screen quality is generally of a high standard with plenty of personal adjustment offered so the look and feel can be tailored to your own liking.

Given its size and performance, pricing for the AG Neovo H-W22 monitor feels about right. The faster than average transition rate means that watching DVDs is a comfortable experience and gameplay is fluid. A competent and solid multi purpose screen option in every sense of the word, if not quite special enough to warrant a Best Buy or Editor's Choice.