I purchased this monitor at Staples because they were selling it on sale at $189. It was one of the few 24" monitors available, and I was attracted to the size / resolution and image quality right off the bat. Compared to the other monitors on display, it seemed brighter and crisper. I also liked the energy star badge, and DVI, VGA, and HDMI connections. In the future, it could easily support gaming / TV duties. It was also one of the only monitors that had some negative tilt, which I need because of the desk I work on.
Well, this might be a good example of "in store" versus "in home" performance.
Setting up the monitor was a breeze, it looks decent and has a neat LED glow under the logo, which is tasteful. The On Screen Menu is easy to use, and while I usually hate touch buttons, these seem to work very well.
The issue is, once I turned it on and starting staring at it, it just didn't seem like the same awesome display I had seen. I really think that this monitor is tuned to look best in really well lit fluorescent Staples like stores! In a home with less or natural light pouring in, I could see where one reviewer criticized its "washed out" look. After playing around for awhile, I figured out what to do.
Primarily, either through windows, or through your ATI or NVidia control panels, you should re-calibrate the image. The main thing to do is cut the Gamma levels, which are way too high out of the box. I dropped mine through the ATI panel literally as far as it would let me. I would have gone further, but didn't feel like screwing around. Then, I set brightness to about 90, and contrast to around 60-70. If you have no idea what I am talking about, don't buy this monitor for the home.
If you do know what I am talking about, know that after this little bit of tweaking, the colors popped a bit more, and overall appearance improved. This is no miracle fix, as you get what you pay for, but overall I think I will be happy in the long run. The image seems evenly lit, no dead pixels, and while black levels and contrast are inferior to even a basic HDTV, this is what I am used to. My monitors are always cheap.
Good, tilting stand, overall attractive
Easy to use menus
Good image post-tuning (cut the Gamma!)
Probably perfect for an office type environment
Great price / resolution / size
Now a bit of an older model, and LCDs are getting better all the time
Really lousy image out of box (at home)
Has audio and HDMI inputs, but I get no use from this yet
Dell customer service - heaven help you if you need it
I would not use this monitor to edit photos or do serious graphics or movie watching. For routine tasks, gaming, and surfing the web, its great. People that expect their monitor to look perfect out of the box may want to steer clear.