Asus PW201: 20" widescreen TFT

By Didou
Oct 22, 2006
  1. Here's a review of the Asus PW201, a 20" widescreen LCD that I've purchased a while ago (& been using ever since). Here are the main specifications:
    A few pictures:



    Above pictures were found on


    Above picture was taken on the Asus PW201 thread on the forums.


    What has drawn me to this computer screen is first of all the incredible amount of connections, I often have more than one computer in my room & was also looking to hook a console to the screen.

    There's also the design of the screen (the first product to come out of the Asus/Lamborghini patnership) which is IMO quite pretty to say the least. Other features include an USB hub with three ports, a 1.3 megapixels webcam & a few others such as "picture-in-picture".

    Upon unpacking the screen I noticed two things: the huge (but nice) stand & the glossy finish of the outter shell. The screen itself also has a glossy finish but my fears of seeing reflections during bright daylight have been put to rest quickly. The box content is good with every possible cable included (except Component & Video). There's also the fine manual, a CD-rom with PDF manuals & the software + driver for the webcam. Asus has a great zero bright pixel warranty with this screen so take the time to register it as soon as you've unpacked it.

    The screen needed quite a lot of calibration to get the colors the way I like them (as faithfull as possible) which then brings me to the first weak point. The OSD keys located at the bottom right side of the screen are not real buttons, they are tactile buttons. The screen detects the touch of a finger & acts accordingly but the detection is not always perfect.

    It quickly brings me to another weak point related to the glossy finish, you've guessed it I'm talking about fingerprints. This screen is a CSI investigator's best friend. The smallest touch is sure to leave a fingerprint, so after messing around with the OSD to set the proper color calibration, it was quite annoying to look at it. A quick rub later with a soft dry cloth & the screen was back in (beautifull) business.

    Once the screen is setup to your liking, you are sure to be blown away by the image. Using the DVI input, the image is crystal clear, colors are vibrating yet the screen is still very soft on the eyes. Response time is great & no games have given me problems for that matter. It's a widescreen monitor though so some games (I'm looking at you incompetent EA) do not support widescreen resolutions & will stretch the image (very ugly). Lucky for me I don't play EA games & the games I play either support the 1680x1050 resolution out of the box (Counter-Strike: Source, Half-Life 2, Oblivion, etc.) either through hacks (Prince of Persia: sands of time, etc.).

    Console wise, it's a bit of a mixed bag. Using the YUV/Component input, I've hooked up a Gamecube & the image is much better then on a regular TV. You need to increase the distance between yourself & the screen though otherwise the image is too "defined" probably because of the interpolation going on. The Video connection isn't too bad but if you have the possibility of using the YUV/Component one instead, don't hesitate. The other problem is the aspect ratio. Game consoles mostly support 16/9 resolutions if widescreen is available but this screen isn't 16/9. There's a big misconception that widescreen PC screens are 16/9 when in fact they are 16/10. So what happens when you ask the console to ouput in widescreen & you set the screen aspect ration to full ? The image is streched vertically.

    Here are a few pictures I've taken to showcase the problem. I've run F-Zero GX in different modes & set the screen to different modes too:

    F-zero GX on the Asus PW201: widescreen disabled on console & screen
    F-zero GX on the Asus PW201: widescreen disabled on console but not on screen
    F-zero GX on the Asus PW201: widescreen enabled on console & screen

    Some people claim a better image quality & a proper aspect ration when using a VGA cable & the Xbox 360's support of PC resolutions. I don't have one so I can't really test it. I have to say I still have fun playing the Gamecube on this screen though.

    As for the rest of the features, the webcam is nice but gets blurry quite quickly when you move. The built-in speakers are ok & the headphone jack is decent but has static up to a certain volume. The USB hub works very well & supports proper USB 2.0 speeds. Picture-in-picture is nice but after messing around with it, I almost never use it anymroe. The screen can also be pivoted but I have no use for that feature right now.

    Although it seems this review has a lot of negative points, in the end I must say that I love this screen. Once you get used to it, it's hard togo back to non widescreen monitors & the looks still stunning even after weeks of looking at the screen.

    If you have any questions, feel free to ask. :)
  2. cfitzarl

    cfitzarl TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,975   +9

    That looks like a beautiful piece of equipment!
  3. TimeParadoX

    TimeParadoX TS Rookie Posts: 2,273

    Oh I want that for my new DX10 build :)

    Very nice review
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