From its boomerang-shaped stand to its thin, glossy cabinet, the Lenovo LI2721s Wide
is designed to impress. This 27-inch monitor uses IPS panel technology to deliver solid color and grayscale quality and wide viewing angles, and it does it with style. It’s not the best choice for gaming thanks to a slow pixel response, and it lacks niceties such as a webcam, speakers, and USB connectivity, but it does offer sharp image detail and a large, non-reflective screen.
Design and Features
The LI2721s Wide uses the same type of bezel-less design as the AOC i2757fh and the HP Pavilion 27xi. Below the screen is a 1.3-inch glossy black panel with a shiny silver Lenovo logo in the center and a set of six touch sensitive buttons (including the power switch) off to the right. The glossy black cabinet is a little over an inch thick and is slightly curved. It has four VESA-compliant mounting holes for hanging the monitor on a wall or you can use the included V-shaped metal stand which is done up in a cool gunmetal gray finish. The stand provides 25-degrees of tilt but doesn’t swivel or have height adjustability.
At the rear of the cabinet are HDMI, DVI, and VGA video inputs. The LI2721s Wide lacks speakers but it does have an audio output jack for use with an external set of speakers (when used with an HDMI signal). There aren’t any USB ports on this model either, nor is there a webcam.
The touch buttons emit an audible beep when pressed. In addition to a menu button you get input select and auto adjust buttons, a DDC-CI (Display Data Channel-Command Interface) button, and a Novo Vision button. Novo Vision is Lenovo’s version of picture presets and includes text, web, video, and split-screen viewing modes. If you depress the auto adjust and DDC keys at the same time you can enabling/disable the button beep.
In addition to brightness and contrast adjustments you can change the color temperature setting or create your own custom temperature setting, change the aspect ratio, and adjust clock and phase settings when using an analog signal.
Lenovo covers the LI2721s Wide with a one-year parts and labor warranty, which is fairly stingy considering the AOC i2753fh comes with a three-year plan. The monitor comes with HDMI, VGA, and DVI cables, and a resource CD.
The LI2721s Wide delivers rich, accurate colors. As shown in the chromaticity chart below its red and blue color accuracy is right in the zone as defined by the CIE (International Commission On Illumination) but greens are just outside their zone (the boxes represent the ideal coordinates for reds, blues, and greens). Slightly hot greens are not uncommon in mid-tier IPS panels and in most cases, including here, do not result in green tinting or an oversaturated picture.
The panel handled the DisplayMate 64-Step Grayscale test with relative ease; there was some compression at the very high end of the scale that made the two brightest shades of gray appear identical but they were not white-washed. Dark gray swatches progressed evenly down the scale and small fonts were clear and easy to read.
The LI2721s Wide has a fairly slow pixel response of 14 milliseconds (gray-to-gray) which is adequate for most video use but not ideal for fast frame rate gaming. I played a round of Midnight Club: Los Angeles, a fast moving street racing game for the PS3 console, and noticed some slight smearing around my car from time to time. The flaw was minor and game-play was still enjoyable but hard core gamers may want to consider a monitor like the BenQ XL2720T, which boasts a speedy 1-millisecond (gray-to-gray) pixel response (and a hefty price tag).
The LI2721s Wide won’t be a burden on your utility bill. It used 27 watts of power during testing, which is slightly less than the AOC i2757fh (30 watts) and the HP Envy 27 w/Beats Audio (30 watts). It couldn’t quite match the efficiency of the Dell S2740L (21 watts) and the HP 27xi (22 watts), however.
The Lenovo LI2721s Wide is a good choice for anyone contemplating the move to a 27-inch IPS monitor. It’s reasonably priced and offers solid color, viewing angle, and grayscale performance, and it is visually appealing as well. A few more features and another two years of warranty coverage would be welcome though. If warranty coverage is a deal breaker, the AOC i2753fh gives you three years, and it too is a solid performer that costs around $50 less, which is why it remains our Editors’ Choice for mainstream big-screen monitors.
|Native Resolution||1920 x 1080|
|Supported Video Formats||1080p|
|PC Interfaces||Analog VGA, Digital (DVI-D), HDMI|
|Video Inputs||DVI, HDMI|
|Diagonal Screen Size||27 inches|
Copyright © 2012 Ziff Davis, Inc