The Good The Dell ST2420L has a nice aesthetic design and a well-designed screen, as well as low-cost HDMI.
The Bad The Dell ST2420L has hard-to-reach connections, its on-screen array may not fit, and although the monitor has DVI and HDMI connections, Dell only includes a VGA cable to connect it. In addition, it has low brightness and uninspired gaming and filmmaking.
The Bottom Line The Dell ST2420L is a decent monitor for its price, but there are other monitors with similar prices that offer much more.
Visit for details.
At $ 239, it’s hard to blame the 24-inch Dell ST2420L too sharply. The monitor includes DVI and HDMI, has a well-designed screen, and it’s easy on the eyes. Unfortunately, it earns such a low price with inappropriate on-screen buttons, hard-to-reach connections, and uninspired movie and game performance. In addition, although VGA, DVI, and HDMI are on, Dell only supplies the ST2420L with a VGA cable. Finally, although most Dell monitors are covered by three years, the ST2420L is only covered for a year and costs an additional $ 50 to get those additional two years of coverage.
Design and features
The 24-inch Dell ST2420L has a rather glossy, piano-black chassis, with smooth rounded corners. Right and left sides are 0.75 inches short. The panel itself is about 0.6 inches thick and extends another 1.75 inches to include the ventilation system and connection options, bringing the full depth of the panel to 2.35 inches. The bottom of the shell ends prematurely, revealing about an inch of attractive gray that would not otherwise be visible. In the lower middle of the panel under the Dell logo is a white LED that illuminates the gray color mentioned above, creating a cool look. Unfortunately, the amount of light emitted is not enough to illuminate an OSD in the dark.
The distance between the underside of the panel and the desktop is 2.25 inches short. Round foot stand 8 inches in diameter and unfortunately unable to keep the monitor stable when struck from the sides. And we found that the ST2420L is very responsive to rear power, especially when compared to the Samsung PX2370. The monitor can tilt back 10 degrees, but does not offer other ergonomic options.
In the middle of the back is the Dell logo. A few inches below are HDMI, DVI, and VGA connection options with no additional connections. Dell only includes the VGA cable as the only cable option. The connections are facing down and tightened into the housing in such a way that it becomes particularly unpleasant for them to access – we prefer when the connections come outwards, as on the PX2370, rather than downwards. If the connections are facing down, this usually means that you will need to turn the monitor sideways to connect it or at least get very low to see them clearly. The placement of the ST2420L DVI port is particularly annoying. It is located directly above the footrest, near the neck of the display, making the connection uncomfortable.
In the lower right corner, on the front side of the frame, there is a screen array aligned vertically. Instead of buttons, Dell uses touch areas, each with a small gray dot. If you touch any point, a popup menu will appear, parallel to the array, and each option corresponds to one of four touch areas. As soon as a new menu appears, the touch area function changes dynamically as the top two touch areas become the up and down arrow buttons used to navigate the recently displayed menu. Since any labels for the OSD are on the screen (other displays tend to mark them on the panel), calibrating the display in a dark room should be painless. Unfortunately, the lack of noticeable demarcation between areas, coupled with the lack of light and inconsistent sensitivity of the touch areas, has often made what is usually a fairly seamless process at other Dells, which keeps track of unpleasant performance in this case.
OSD options include standard brightness, contrast, and different color settings. The previous settings are divided into two categories: Graphics and Video. There are six presets for the graphics to choose from: Standard, Multimedia, Gaming, Warm, Cool, and Custom. His previous settings for video are movies, games, sports and nature. The presets change the color balance and contrast with the intention of being the appropriate task. Some presets also include options for adjusting hue, sharpness, and color saturation. In addition, there are additional options for adjusting the OSD for a long time on the screen (useful for those who spend a lot of time calibrating).
|Connectivity:||HDMI, DVI, VGA|
|Ergonomic options:||10-degree back tilt|
|Audio:||Audio In and Out; no speakers|
|Included video cables?||VGA|
|Number of presets:||10|
|Picture options:||Brightness, Contrast, Sharpness|
|Color controls:||Hue, Saturation|
|Additional features:||Dynamic Contrast mode|
We tested the Dell ST2420L through its DVI input connected to a Windows Vista PC using a DVI cable from our own rich DVI drive that we’ve been collecting for years. The display features a composite score of 87 for CNET lab-based display tests, more than a few points lower than the Samsung PX2370 96. The ST2430L performed well for most of our color and grayscale tests, showing up to 253 white and up 4 dark gray, indicating that the monitor is not oversaturated and will be able to display dark details in movies – both of which we have found true in our actual tests.
The monitor has very little color-tracking issues, with a slight tapping of the screen to green, though it was more noticeable when we saw the movies, which you can read more about below. We have seen some color compression at the bright end of the color scales, especially in red. This indicated that the ST2420L had a smaller range than the PX2370, which did not have this problem. In addition, due to the low brightness of the display, we saw minimal illumination during the test on a dark screen. We also saw some rare evidence of static ghosts.
We didn’t see any color issues with the black text on the white background in the text. The fonts were visible up to a size 6.8.
We tested the Dell ST2420L in its preinstalled Movie application using the Blu-ray version of Avatar. The ST2420L displayed a film with a noticeable pattern and a soft, almost blurred appearance; probably not as sharp and bright as the PX2370 presented the same scenes. The faces also had a light green tint. We managed to marginalize the effect of the green tint by adjusting the shade down, but this led to an unfortunate side effect that also pulled most of the red out of the picture. As for the dark details, we could see most of the conceived dark hair details of Na’vi in the dark scenes.
Through our deep familiarity with World of Warcraft (WoW), it remains the best tool for judging color quality and brightness in games. We looked at WoW in the Dell ST2420L pre-installed game and found that the display showed colors that were a bit black and lacked brightness and pop.
The optimum viewing angle for the monitor is usually directly in front, about a quarter of the way down from the top of the screen. At this angle, you look at colors and colors as intended by the manufacturer. Most monitors are not considered in any other angle. The image quality at sub-optimal angle depends on the type of panel. Most monitors use TN panels that are too bright or too dark on parts of the screen when viewed from sub-optimal angles, making the color image inaccurate. The Dell ST2420L uses a TN panel, and when viewed from the side or bottom, we perceived the screen to be approximately 6 inches from the center; typical of TN.
Recommended settings and usage:
For general use, we have established that the preset standard (standard contrast – 74) is the optimal image parameter for the ST2420L.
Both movie presets and games allow you to adjust the hue and saturation of your screen. For movies, we recommend keeping the tint at 50 and adjusting the saturation to above 55 and not below 50. We recommend the same for games, except that the saturation threshold can be up to 60.
In the movies, we failed to adjust the tint to a level that reduced the green tint without reducing too much red. The problem of green is by no means an emergency, but noticeable next to the PX2370. The games benefited from the increase in saturation, but still looked sharper compared to the PX2370.
As with most TN-based monitors, the Dell ST2420L should not be used if accurate color reproduction is required; the monitor is great for watching movies, playing games and sharing, though movies and games are definitely not his strong suit. If you have strict color requirements, we recommend that you limit your search to IPS or PVA based panels only. More expensive Dell UltraSharp U2711 this is a good place to start. The Samsung PX2370 is a great monitor for movies, games and the public. The Dell ST2420L is best suited for the general public and not particularly great for games and movies.
The Dell ST2420 achieved high power, default power / on 19.62W, compared to the 25.01W Samsung PX2370 in the same test. Delta consumption was higher in our sleep / expectation test, with the ST2420L at 0.62 watts and the PX2370 costing below 0.27 watts. With center point on both monitors calibrated to 200 cand. Per square meter (cd / M2), the ST2420L received 23.5 watts and the PX2370 received 19.9 watts. Based on our formula, the Dell ST2420L will cost $ 6.28 a year, compared to the Samsung PX2370 $ 7.65 a year.
Brightness (cd / m2)
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
Samsung SyncMaster XL2370
344 Samsung PX2370
246 BenQ V2400 Eco
228 Asus MS238H
223 Samsung SyncMaster BX2350
219 Acer S243HL
217 Dell ST2420L
207 LG Flatron E2350V
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
LG Flatron E2350V
1,355:1 Dell ST2420L
1,061:1 Samsung SyncMaster XL2370
1,008:1 Samsung PX2370
948:1 Asus MS238H
942:1 BenQ V2400 Eco
891:1 Samsung SyncMaster BX2350
885:1 Acer S243HL
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
97 Samsung SyncMaster XL2370
96 Samsung SyncMaster BX2350
96 LG Flatron E2350V
94 BenQ V2400 Eco
93 Dell ST2420L
87 Asus MS238H
87 Acer S243HL
|Dell ST2420L||Picture settings|
|On (max luminance)||25.7|
|On (min luminance)||9.06|
|Calibrated (200 cd/m2)||23.5|
|Annual power consumption cost||$6.28|
Learn more about how we test LCD monitors
Service and support
Dell only supports the ST2420L with a one-year limited warranty that covers the backlight. Most Dell monitors are covered for up to three years, making Dell’s reduced ST2420L coverage uncomfortable. Dell charges an additional $ 50 for an additional two years. It also offers 24-7 toll free support and a 24-7 web chat. Dell also has a fast running time of 24 to 48 hours of email – a better package than most monitor vendors that don’t offer weekend support.