Philips S-Line 243S7EHMB Review

The Philips S-Line 243S7 is an affordable monitor that is aimed towards business users, but how is it for everyday use outside of the office?

In the box

With the 243S7 monitor you get bundled

  • D-Sub cable
  • HDMI cable
  • Audio cable
  • Power cable
  • The documentation

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Design Build and Features

Specifications

  • Inputs: HMDI 1.4, VGA, PC audio in
  • Outputs: Headphone jack
  • Audio: 2 x 2W stereo speakers
  • Height adjust: 130mm
  • Pivot: 90 degree
  • Swivel: -175/+175 degree
  • Tilt: -5/25 degree
  • Dimensions with stand: 540 x 483 x 202mm
  • Weight with stand: 5kg

The 243S7 is a pretty much no frills display but that is by no means a bad thing. Its designed to sit in an office whether at home or work and blend right in. It does manage to look better than its closest rival the BenQ BL2405HT which has a rather generous bezel. The Philips by contrast are rather minimal. This makes it look much more modern and in-keeping with the bezel-less trend.

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The front of the monitor of course houses the display which is 24” (23.8 visible) and that is surrounded by a 2mm bezel. However there is a Black border around the screen which means in fact the bezel is more like 5mm (approx). This is still not massive and it’s far less noticeable than a very thick plastic bezel. The bottom bezel is thicker at 20mm but that houses the menu controls and also features the branding and model number.

Round the back of the monitor its pretty plain with a small vent for cooling, a VESA 100 mounting option and all the connections. Here you get the main power in, HDMI, VGA, PC audio in and headphone out. So as far as connections go, it’s not too bad and it has everything you need. Plus the VGA port means you can use this with older PCs that don’t utilise HDMI, but more than likely you’ll be likely to use HDMI as your main connection source.

The stand next and it’s understandably nothing flashy but its really quite functional. There is a good range of height adjust as well as swivel and pivot adjust. This gives you plenty of flexibility to get the display right where it needs to be. The swivel adjust is pretty interesting as the bottom section stays fixed whereas the upper section of the base rotates. This means that it won’t mark or scuff your desk when moving it. The pivot works up to 90 degrees to allow the display to be used in portrait mode.

Also the stand is stable and does not wobble at all when typing on your desk. Even if you are very heavy handed it still remains solid.

Build quality feels good, its predominately plastic but the overall monitor is solid and well put together. There is a few plastic creaks at the bottom bezel but that is nothing of major concern. The pivot is good too. It’s again solid and requires a bit of effort to do the action. This is good as it won’t easily move at the slightest touch.

Overall it may not be the most ultra svelte stylish monitor on the market, but for its target audience it’s right on the money. It’s good looking for a business monitor and most importantly very functional.

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Menus

The menus on the 243S7 could use some work, they’re a little dated and could use some modernisation. Don’t get me wrong they do exactly what is needed of them, they’re just dated. Navigation is pretty straight forward as you press the specific menu you want and once in you utilise the arrows to move around the menus. It’s easy enough to do, but after using Samsungs joystick method it feels a touch old fashioned.

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From left to right you have the smart image. This gives you 7 preset options that allow you to change the mode of the display, this in turn changes a few various aspects of the monitor like the colour temperature, contrast, saturation and also one completely remove the colour to make it more akin to a e-ink display.

Next is the input switch to toggle between HDMI and VGA. You then have the volume control and finally the main menu. In the main menu you get access to all the other settings which begs the question why not just use one menu? But here you can adjust all the previous menus as well as the colour profile, language, OSD settings and main setup.

This system is easy to use and its very straightforward which means you can easily tweak the monitor with minimal effort. Again Philips have gone for function over style and it works, I can’t complain about its ease of use, I just wish it looked a bit more modern.

Display

Specifications

  • LCD panel type: IPS technology
  • Backlight type: W-LED system
  • Panel Size: 23.8 inch/60.5 cm
  • Effective viewing area: 527 (H) x 296.5 (V)
  • Aspect ratio: 16:9
  • Resolution: 1920 x 1080 @ 60 Hz
  • Response time (typical): 5 ms (Grey to Grey)*
  • Pixel Density: 93 PPI
  • Brightness: 250cd/m²
  • Contrast ratio (typical): 1000:1
  • SmartContrast: 20,000,000:1
  • Pixel pitch: 0.275 x 0.275 mm
  • Viewing angle: 178º (H)/178º (V) @ C/R > 10
  • Picture enhancement: SmartImage
  • Display colours: 16.7 M
  • Scanning Frequency: 30 – 83 kHz (H) / 56 – 76 Hz (V)
  • SoftBlue: Yes Flicker-free: Yes sRGB: Yes EasyRead: Yes

The W-LED IPS screen on the 243S7 is great. The colours in sRGB mode combined with the smartimage off are accurate and nicely punchy. They don’t look too flat or dull and have a good amount of vibrancy and saturation. Unfortunately I don’t have to correct tools to provide accurate numbers but the folks over at techradar.com stated the monitor has 96% sRGB coverage with 76% AdobeRGB coverage. They also went on to state the monitors contrast was below they stated contrast on managing to hit 370:1 as apposed to the 1000:1 advertised. Personally I find the contrast to be fine as I don’t like an overly contrast heavy display. If you do need to tweak the contrast there is always the menus. The monitor at default is set to 50 giving you range to increase if so desired. Default colour temperature is 6500K which again you can change in the menus but if you stick to the sRGB profile I think for everyday use its the best option.

Text on the 24” screen is pretty good, its sharp, clear and very easy to read. I personally need glasses to use a PC and even without them the text is still very legible. Backlight bleed is very minimal and in fact not that noticeable at all.

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Viewing angles are great and that is thanks to the IPS panel, so even if you are looking at the monitor off axis there is no colour shift and it still looks great. Even at very extreme angles the monitor does very well and manages a solid performance.

The softblue effect is also very handy, especially of you’re working late into the evening or first thing in the morning. It acts to reduce eye strain by reducing the Blue light level which can be a bit harsh on your eyes late in the evening.

Usability

Using the monitor daily has been good. I’ve used it for editing photos, editing video, word documents, web browsing, excel, managing my website and video consumption and its performed very well. There is a decent amount of real estate space to have two windows open side by side and comfortably get some work done or watch YouTube whilst editing a word doc.

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Editing photos was a decent experience as the IPS panel gives good colour accuracy, the downside is that at 1080p it’s not the sharpest and you wont be able to view your photos at their fullest potential. So if you are an avid photographer and need a monitor for editing photos, this isn’t for you. If you have a casual blog and need to edit a few quick photos from your phone or camera then it does a decent job and will suit your needs just fine.

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Doing Excel with WPS you see a plenty visible rows horizontally and columns vertically. This is good enough to get started working on your fiances or if you are a book keeper or just so happen to need to use Excel in a professional manner.

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Gaming

Now I fully understand that this monitor was never designed to be gamed on, but I thought being a casual gamer that I would give it a go and the results were surprising. The monitor only has a 5ms GTG (Grey to Grey) response time but honestly that didn’t pose that much of an issue for casual none competitive games. Games like Tomb Raider, Batman played absolutely fine with no issues at all. Of course it doesn’t feel as responsive as a monitor with a 1ms response time but again for casual games it’s fine. If you do so happen to play competitive eSports titles or competitive games in general the 60Hz and 5ms will hurt you some.

But again this isn’t a gaming monitor and it was never designed to be, but that isn’t to say that you can’t enjoy gaming on this, because you can. If you stick to the right titles.

Watch the monitor in action.

Summary

So for its £165 price tag it’s a good monitor. The design is nicer than most of it’s rivals, it’s well made, has plenty of features, the display is very nice and it’s great for everyday use. The only small issue I have with it is the menu system, but that is by no means a deal breaker. It’s also lacking more modern connections like USB and Display port which could be a turn off for some.

However if you need those extra ports a quick browse on Amazon and you’ll find the Dell UltraSharp U2414H. This is only £10 more and offers 2 HDMI, 3 USB 3.0 ports as well as display port 1.2. As well as all the same monitor adjustments as the Philips. So if you value more connectivity, this one could be well worth a look. I can’t comment on it as a whole but it has good reviews and could be one to look into.

Back to the Philips and it does it’s job very well, it has all the basics covered as well as a few extra features that you may need. It’s compact and would fit nicely in a home or work office and it’s pretty decent at gaming if you want to get some done in your downtime.

Should you buy one, well, if you don’t need all the ports and want a brilliant business monitor, this is well worth a look. If you do need those extra ports and more modern features the Dell maybe better suited.

Score 7.5/10

Purchase one here via Amazon UK

200

Philips 243S7EHMB/00 23.7-Inch LED Monitor – Black

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