Relisys RE1422 Super VGA Multiscan. (color monitor) (Hardware Review) (Evaluation)
by Tom Benford
If you're looking to upgrade your video capabilities into the realms of Super VGA (800 x 640 or 1024 x 768) but you don't want to break the bank, the Relisys RE1422 Super VGA Multiscan color monitor may be a good candidate for your purchase.
The 14-inch video display is housed in an ergonomically pleasing PC-beige plastic cabinet that sits atop a removable tilt-swivel stand. The monitor's overall styling is quite good, and all necessary adjustment controls are within easy reach.
At the rear of the unit, the AC power connector is found, as well as a 15-pin video connector. This connector accepts one end of the supplied video cable, while the other end mates to the PC's video card. The power switch is also located at the rear of the monitor cabinet.
An illuminated power indicator is embedded into the Relisys logo at the lower left front of the monitor, and knobs for adjusting vertical size, horizontal size, horizontal phase (centering the image from right to left), brightness, and contrast are located at the bottom of the monitor's display.
The RE1422 has a noninterlaced display, which makes it capable of working with a huge number of video adapters and GUI accelerator cards in the extended video modes. I encountered no problems running my Truevision Video VGA with Overlay card, which uses a Tseng 4000 chip set backed by 1MB of RAM, in 1024 x 768 resolution with 256 colors noninterlaced.
The overall image quality, color separation, and clarity of the display are good, even when viewing complex graphics and very small fonts. Moire patterns and strobing, however, are particularly pronounced with some graphics patterns. Working on a monitor with these shimmering patterns and flickers can be highly fatiguing to the eyes, although some adjustments to the brightness and contrast controls lessen the effect in many instances. The RE1422 also exhibits a tendency toward blooming (getting thicker) at the ends of thin lines and rules and ghosting (images persisting).
Switching from text to graphics mode and back again in Dos applications causes a noticeable bounce as the screen images change; this bouncing phenomenon is not present when running or switching applications under Windows, however, since the video stays in graphics mode throughout the Windows session.
Corner-edge resolution isn't as sharp on the RE1422 as on some other monitors, but cost-conscious purchasers shouldn't see this as a major shortcoming unless they intend to do very intricate full-screen CAD projects or other applications that require pristine focus across the entire screen. For such power users, the more expensive, larger-screen monitors would probably be a better choice.
It would be unfair to compare this monitor on a point-by-point basis with others costing at least twice as much; you'd expect better performance and perhaps more refinements for a substantially larger investment. But most average PC users will find that, despite its shortcomings, the RE1422 delivers good value and performance at an affordable price. Relisys RE1422 Super VGA Multiscan--$795 RELISYS 320 S. Milpitas Blvd. Milpitas, CA 95035 (408) 945-9000 Circle Reader Service Number 371