Are Touchscreen Monitors Necessary?

Review: Acer T232HL Touchscreen Monitor

Recently I decided to replace one of the monitors at my (workstation/desk) and came to the conclusion I wanted to get a touch screen. Primarily I use my desktop for work purposes, but it also functions as a gaming computer; therefore, I wanted a screen with a fast response time and a high contrast ratio. Unfortunately, this limited me to very few and very expensive choices. I ended up choosing an Acer 23” Touchscreen LED with an impressive contrast ratio and a response time designed for fast motion movies and games.

My previous setup was a LG Flatron 22” and an old Dell 19” Tube monitor which has been in use for 8 years. Upon unboxing the Acer I discovered it would not fit in the designated monitor spot built into the desk, but then realized this is not a bad thing. If the monitor was set back into the desk I would be required to reach forward to use it as opposed to having it at my fingertips.

Once I had the monitor fully set up and connected, I enabled the touch and pen inputs and had to calibrate it so the touch inputs would be accurate. This is when I realized there was about an inch or 2 of unused black space bordering the screen and had to adjust the horizontal and vertical position/stretch. This task was very difficult because I was unable to adjust it through the monitor menu settings. After searching online, I found this was a common problem for people who had connected the display with the HDMI cord. Fortunately, however, my AMD video card has settings to magnify the display through ATI’s Catalyst Control Center program. Once I had increased the screen size by 9-12%, I was able to eliminate the black border and recalibrate the touch input.

Once I had it set up and calibrated, it felt like using a very large Windows tablet. Using the touch features instead of the mouse was fun and easy to adjust to.



Price: $499.99
OS Used: Windows 7 & 8 (video to come soon)
Ownership Length: Over one month
Buy at Amazon.com (aff)


Pros
1) Appearance: Extreme detail quality, no blur with fast motions, amazing color, vivid detail, wide viewing angle
2) Touch input: 10 point multi-touch screen allows use of all of your fingers
3) Windows 8 compatibility
3) Three USB ports on side for easy access
4) Flexible tilt stand

Cons
1) Price: I could have bought a new computer for the price of my monitor
2) Cleaning: Touch screens are very prone to getting smudged with fingerprints, so it requires much more cleaning than a regular monitor

Summary

This is by far the best performing monitor I have ever used; its quality is on par with the LED televisions on the market. It is a large monitor and will take up a lot of desk space depending on how you set up your workstation, but it can be wall mounted if necessary. The 10 touch input allows for fast and accurate touch screen interaction, making on-screen navigation and typing user-friendly. The multi-touch input also enables you to access the gesture features in Windows 8. Even in fast action sequences in movies or games, the display has no motion blur and delivers high quality moving images. The only drawback is that many games have yet to enable touch input capabilities, which means some games are unsure how to process the touch inputs. Overall I am very satisfied with the monitor and believe that as the technology develops it will be perfected over time and will become more functional.

Using Windows 8 With Touchscreen

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