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Gateway FPD1930 Review

Highs

  • Supports both DVI and analog video inputs

Rating

Our Score 6
User Score 6

Lows

  • Limited adjustability
  • poor view angles
  • low contrast ratio
  • expensive if purchased alone
The FPD1930 does a good job of displaying text on various backgrounds, both light and dark.

Summary

The FPD1930 is not a particularly bad LCD monitor, its just that there are so many other LCD displays in this price range that offer considerably more “bang for your buck”. The FPD1930 has limited adjustability, below average performance, especially for hardcore gamers and a relatively high price tag. If we were to recommend a 19″ LCD monitor in this price range, based on our tests we would have to go with Samsung’s 192T. But if you currently have a Gateway system, do little gaming and would like a new monitor to match, the FPD1930 should fit the bill quite nicely. Just be forewarned that you are paying a premium to have this monitor match your Gateway system with no further benefits.

Introduction

Gateway’s FPD1930 19″ LCD monitor offers the best of both worlds with its analog and digital video inputs but falls short in the way of extras. The LCD market is a getting very crowded and if manufacturers want to be competitive, they will have to offer more than just oog looks.  Gateway offers this monitor with some of their systems, but you can purchase it separately for $799 via their website.

Design and Features

The design and features of the FPD1930 really offers nothing new compared to similar priced LCD monitors. It is not very sleek looking, the base is pretty bland looking and there are almost no adjustability options to speak of. But thankfully the paint job makes this monitor look better than the old standard-issue beige.

The FPD1930 comes with both analog VGA and digital DVI inputs making this monitor a pretty versatile unit. Just like the latest Samsung LCD monitors we have reviewed, you can have two computers plugged into the FPD1930 at the same time allowing you to switch between the analog and digital inputs at the touch of a button. The FPD1930 is capable of a resolution of 1024×768 at 75Hz as well as the larger 1280×1024, but at 60Hz vertical frequency. Competitiors to the FPD1930 are offering 1280×1024 resolutions at a high refresh rate such as 75Hz. If you plan on using this monitor with the DVI input, every resolution will limit you to a 60Hz refresh rate.

Gateway 19" LCD display

We were disappointed to see that the only movement allowed by the FPD1930 was the ability to tilt the monitor vertically. There are no swivel options forcing you to physically move the FPD1930 in the position you want. One cool feature we liked on the Samsung CD monitors was the ability to pivot the display 90 degrees into portrait mode. We would have liked to have seen this ability on the Gateway FPD1930, but probably due to its curved design was not implemented. The hand-hold located near the top of the monitor allows easy movement should you decide you want to take the monitor to another room. The FPD1930 is compatible with VESA wall mount or arm-mounting hardware.

Gateway 19" LCD display

Gateway offers a 90 day limited warranty on the FPD1930 in which they will either replace the product, repair it, or offer a refund on the purchase price. You can however purchase a 3 year extended warranty for a mere $29 should you decide you want further protection. Other LCD display manufacturers are offering more robust 3 year warranties standard. This is something we would like to have seen Gateway offer as well.

Setup and Use

The Gateway FPD1930 is a very easy monitor to setup. Windows XP recognized the monitor immediately and there were no drivers to install. The manual that comes with this display is pretty detailed and explains exactly what steps you need to follow in order to get it setup correctly. Our monitor came with no bad pixels or trouble problems.

The on screen display (OSD) navigation and look is very similar to that of the Samsung monitors. Simply press the source/set button to automatically adjust the displays resolution.  We had to turn our brightness and contrast levels all of the way up to get it to satisfactory viewing. Because of this monitors low 300:1 contrast ratio, we would recommend you do the same. Overall the OSD is very easy to use and setting up this monitor is a breeze because there really is not much you will need to do.

If you plan on using this monitor with the DVI input for word processing and other basic applications, we recommend using Microsoft’s True Type feature to make text easy to read. Speaking of text, the FPD1930 does a good job of displaying text on various backgrounds, both light and dark. We did experience pixel fusion, where some of the text was bunched together and darker than the surrounding text, but this is usually fixed by scrolling up and down the page until the text shows up correctly.

In our movie tests, the FPD1930 was not very bright compared to other 19′ LCD monitors. There appeared to be a considerable brownish tint to the movie as well. The upside is that there was no flashing present in the movies and trailing was very minimal. The black bars present on most movies were very dark with no apparent light bleeding from the edges of the display.

In our gaming tests, the FPD1930 showed results that were similar to our movie tests. There was a brownish tint to the screen, but blacks were relatively deep. For first person shooters, you will want to stick to a traditional CRT since the FPD1930 showed ghosting and trailing in all of our 3d tests. For those that like to play real time strategy games (RTS) or slower paced role playing games, the FPD1930 should be fine for your needs.

Conclusion

The FPD1930 is not a particularly bad LCD monitor, its just that there are so many other LCD displays in this price range that offer considerably more “bang for your buck”. The FPD1930 has limited adjustability, below average performance, especially for hardcore gamers and a relatively high price tag. If we were to recommend a 19″ LCD monitor in this price range, based on our tests we would have to go with Samsung’s 192T. But if you currently have a Gateway system, do little gaming and would like a new monitor to match, the FPD1930 should fit the bill quite nicely. Just be forewarned that you are paying a premium to have this monitor match your Gateway system with no further benefits.

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