Over the last few years, BenQ has been steamrolling ahead with various products on offer and in the process have been further establishing their name in a market they are already popular in, i.e. computer peripherals. Last year, we saw the BenQ EW2430V, a monitor that superceded our expectations as it featured a VA panel. More recently, we reviewed the BenQ XL2420T, a monitor whose USP was 3D capability. Moving over from some of their flagship models, the brand has also released a range of monitors that are easier on the pocket in comparison to the aforementioned models. One of these is the BenQ RL2450HM, an LED monitor that is designed for those looking for gaming at a somewhat affordable price. Read on to know more about this offering from BenQ.

Controls are located at the side

Controls are located at the side

Design and Build Quality
If by chance, one happens to glance at this monitor, they are sure to stop for a second look. The monitor has been built for gaming and it is designed in the exact fashion. Dressed in matte black with red highlights, this display is one of the better looking monitors available nowadays. The bezel is not that thick, which gives it a sleek overall appearance, even though it is a fairly large monitor. The bezel features only the logo and apart from it, there are just dots at the bottom right, which show where the controls are. The bezel feels really sturdy, which is a great thing as most monitors that are in the market feature bezels that are made of a lesser quality plastic, as compared to this model.

The controls for this monitor are located at the side and the dots on the front of the bezel do not do much to differentiate between the different options. This is a design feature, which we did not much appreciate as a new user would need to fiddle around with the buttons a bit before getting accustomed to the layout. The only button, which features a denotation on the bezel is the power button. There is also an LED indicator on the button, itself, which actually makes the legend on the bezel rather redundant. The build quality of these buttons, however, are really good and it appears that it can last for the life of the monitor.

Stand allows some amount of tilt

Stand allows some amount of tilt

Connectivity options for the monitor are located at the back and these include ports for D-sub, DVI-D, HDMI and a Headphone Jack. These connectors are downward facing and if one needs to wall mount the monitor, they can flush it easily against the wall. The stand of the monitor is sturdy and it allows one to tilt the angle of the display. This stand is built well, but there is a slight wobble present. The base has been designed a bit differently and it is quite small, but comes with an extension in the front, which is large and it helps in balancing the monitor. The build quality of the entire cabinet is really good and it looks like it can be used for quite a few years without looking shabby.

Features
Judging by the spec sheet, the BenQ RL2450HM is loaded with features that would definitely warrant a purchase. It comes fitted with a TN panel that offers a crisp response time of 2ms, which will be great for gamers. This 24-inch monitor features a 16:9 aspect ratio and supports a resolution of 1080p. With support for this full HD resolution, it keeps on par with many of the high-end monitors that presently populate the market.

The user interface of the monitor is designed well and it is one of the better ones that we have seen in the recent past. It is very easy to navigate through and as soon as one gets acquainted with the controls, they can easily maneuver through the different settings. The interface is similar to that on most other BenQ monitors and all the options onscreen are self explanatory, so there is no confusion that arises while navigating through it. There is no lag noticeable as well, while scrolling through the different options.

Base is uniquely designed

Base is uniquely designed

The picture settings are quite detailed as well, as it offers one the option of adjusting various settings, such as brightness, contrast, gamma and a host of others. An interesting feature found here is that one can alter the display mode as well and view content as per different screen sizes at different aspect ratios. This can be useful depending on the aspect ratio of the content that is viewed. BenQ have also added picture modes as well, such as Movie, Photo, RTS, Gamer, Eco and a handful of others, which can be used as quick presets for content based on what is being viewed. Overall, this is a very feature-rich monitor with gaming at its core.

Performance
While testing the performance of the BenQ RL2450HM, it was observed that the buttons at the side of the display were extremely responsive allowing one to easily navigate through the OSD. The interface is extremely fluid with no lag noticed, while navigating through it. We calibrated the display using the Spyder3 Elite colorimeter and we observed that the hightest deviation in brightness from the centre point was visible at the top left corner of the screen.

Red highlights found on the base

Red highlights found on the base

DisplayMate
Since the monitor was calibrated using the Spyder3 calibrator, no adjustments were required to be made, during the DisplayMate test. Greys and whites rendered accurately and there was no discolouration observed in the form of green or pink tinges. While checking the black levels, we observed that almost all of the dark grey blocks could be seen, indicating that the black levels of the monitor are good. In the reverse video colour test, we observed that yellow appeared darker than expected and this put us off slightly. Primary colours, such as green and red, on the other hand appeared quite vibrant and not natural. While checking the backlighting of the monitor, we observed that there are some patches visible in certain areas of the screen. In the colour intensity range test, we observed that the scales were visible and the seams were noticeable, but the colours to the left side of each colour bar appeared washed out. In our test, we observed that viewing angles were not the best on this monitor.

HD video
While checking HD playback, we hooked up the monitor to our test rig and played full HD content at 60fps as well as HD 720 content at 24fps. From these videos, we observed that the overall image quality was good, but the colours appeared slightly oversaturated. Viewing angles were another concern, which we had, since it required one to sit directly in front of the screen to notice detail in every shot. While the detail was visible in bright scenes, in dark scenes it appeared washed out. Skin tones too appeared a bit unnatural.

Designed for gaming

Designed for gaming

Verdict
The BenQ RL2450HM is available in India at a price of Rs.14,000. This monitor is designed for gamers and the great design oozes that raw appeal. Feature-wise, it is loaded and filled with a range of modes – here this monitor does not disappoint. However, the only place where the monitor does not do that great is in the performance bit. Though the overall performance is not that bad by any means, one may find the colours a bit vibrant and there was lack of detail in dark scenes. Apart from these issues with the performance, the monitor can be a worthy performance as it possesses all the other attributes required to be a great monitor.

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