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Philips 220CW review

Our Rating :
Price when reviewed : £126
inc VAT

An attractive monitor with superb picture quality and incredible colour accuracy. Only the resolution is a slight disappointment


22in screen size, 1,680×1,050 resolution, DVI: yes, VGA: yes, HDMI:

Philips’ 220CW is one of the more attractive monitors here, with a glossy black bezel and a smart stand with a silver neck.

The menu buttons are tucked away on the side, so the front panel looks clean and neat. You’ll need to poke your head around the side to familiarise yourself with the controls, but once you know which is which, you can feel for them easily. The bezel is distractingly reflective, however.

In side-by-side picture-quality comparisons, we were amazed that the 220CW was superior to monitors that cost a lot more. Colours were incredibly accurate and looked stunning, while contrast was superb. This is all helped by the incredibly bright backlight, which gives whites a gleaming intensity and colours a vibrant, punchy feel.

Once we’d located the menu controls, we found them easy to use. As well as standard brightness, contrast and colour settings, there are options to turn on Smart settings for contrast and response time. We’re sceptical of claims of response time improvements, as modern LCD panels don’t suffer from the motion blur or ghosting that plagued early models, and we couldn’t see any difference in game or movie tests. SmartContrast, which activates the display’s dynamic contrast mode, helped produce a better picture, though. The adjustments to the backlight were incredibly subtle, improving contrast without drawing attention to what was happening in the background.

The 220CW9FB isn’t perfect. In particular, it has a resolution of just 1,680×1,050, whereas most 22in displays have a full HD resolution of 1,920×1,080. This provides quite a lot less room on your desktop. If you plug a Blu-ray player into the HDCP-compliant DVI port, you won’t get full HD resolution.

Although the 220CW isn’t a full HD monitor, it’s great value at £126, and the picture quality is superb. If you’re interested in photo or video editing and need accurate colours, especially with skin tones, the 220CW is a good choice, but BenQ’s full HD G2220HD is a better all-round choice for most people.

Basic Specifications



Viewable size22 in
Native resolution1,680×1,050
Contrast ratio1,000:1 (12,000:1 dynamic)
Horizontal viewing angle160°
Response time5ms
Response time typeblack-to-black
Screen depth64mm
Base (WxD)225x200mm
Screen elevation112mm


Portrait modeno
Wall mount optionno
Height adjustableno
Internal speakersnone
Detachable cablesyes
USB hub1-port USB
Integrated power supplyyes
Kensington lock lugyes
Display extrasnone
VGA inputyes
DVI inputyes
S-video inputno
Component inputno
Composite inputno
HDCP supportyes
Audio inputsnone


Power consumption standby0W
Power consumption on42W

Buying Information

Warrantythree years onsite

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