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Samsung 957MB 19-inch CRT Monitor

The Samsung 957MB hasn’t disappointed me at all during the month I have been using it. It’s a solid CRT based monitor with a relatively small footprint.

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Introduction


Over the last six months, I have reviewed several monitors, including the Samsung 192T, which I even ended up buying for myself. There has however been one problem with all the LCD displays I have reviewed so far – they only go up to 1280×1024 in resolution. Since I review many video cards, I really need to be able to go up to at least 1600×1200, and so far I have been forced to use my six year old, trusty Samsung 900P to do this duty. Today, I am happy to give you my thoughts on the new Samsung 975MB. I have been using this monitor for about a month and am ready to give you my opinion of it.


The Samsung 975MB


First let us take a look at the specifications of the monitor:

Size 19″, Viewable 18″
Type MagicBright(TM)
Dot Pitch (mm) 0.20
Bandwidth 250 MHz
Resolution Max 1920×1440 / 64 Hz
Resolution Recommended 1600×1200 / 75 Hz
MTBF 750,000 hours POH
Dimensions 17.3×18.1×18.1 (inches)
Weight 46.2lbs
Warranty (Parts/Labor/CRT) 3/3/3 year

The first thing I noticed compared to my 900P was the size. My 900P is 21” deep while the 957MB is 17.3” deep. This is great for those of us who know we need every inch of desk space we can get.

Samsung claims that the 957MB is a flat screen monitor. Well, that is not exactly true. The monitor is flat compared to my 900P, but the monitor screen actually has a very small curve in towards the inside of the monitor. I only noticed this when laying a ruler across the monitor so it should be nothing that would bother the end user.

This is also the first CRT I have used that I actually turned on Windows XP’s ClearType. For those of you not knowing what ClearType is, ClearType was originally designed to be an option for LCD’s since their text is so fine. It makes the text look a little bolder and not so thin. It turns out ClearType works great with the 957MB too and really enhances the text.

Click on the images for larger versions

For testing the monitor for all geometry, focus, colors and ghosting we used Monitors Directs Calibrator. We have found this to be a very nice tool to use both for LCD and CRT testing. I am happy to report that the monitor came through the testing just fine. I did not notice any areas that the monitor failed. As a side note for any of you with CRT’s wanting to run these tests, I suggest letting your monitor be on for 20 minutes before running the test. This just gives the guns on the CRT time to warm up and become stable. I have seen many monitors over the years look horrible out of the box when they are first turned on and then be fine 10-20 minutes later. Thankfully, the only thing I noticed on the Samsung out of the box was the focus looked a little blurry, but after 10 minutes the monitor had warmed up and was fine.

Also, I was very happy to see no dead pixels on the monitor. In the early days of 19-20 inch monitors, it was a common thing to have a dead pixel or two and you had to live with it since it was within tolerance range of the manufacturers. Even my 900P has 2 dead pixels that it has had since day one.

Like almost all Samsung monitors, the 957MB does come with Magic Bright. This is a nice, handy tool that you can quickly hit a button to set the screen brightness to preset levels for what you are doing. Also Samsung includes a button called Highlight. This feature allows you to make one area of the screen brighter than the rest. You can adjust the size of this area if you wish. The benefit is that you can open a window that you are working on and highlight that window so it stands out more. I myself have never found a use for it, but some of you might have one.

Click on the images for larger versions

The other controls on the monitor are pretty standard fare found on all monitors any more, letting you get in and adjust about anything you want. As a computer consultant, sometimes I wish they did not include all the options. More than once I have had been called out to fix a monitor that someone had just went in a messed up everything on the controls.

Conclusion


Like I said before, after a month of playing games, using text editors and watching DVD’s on the 957MB, I have found it to be a great monitor. It is hard to do a monitor justice using a camera to capture the display, but watching the Eagles Hell Freezes Over DVD on this monitor really proved how great the .20 dot pitch is.

Pros:

- .20 Dot Pitch
– Size
– 3 Year Warranty
– Price 269.00 to 300.00 (check best price at Pricegrabber)

Cons:

- Needs to warm up about 10-20 minutes for focus to settle down

I am awarding the 957MB the Bjorn3D Seal of approval.

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