Dell 2408WFP - Updates, Changes and Issues?
Simon Baker, 10 March 2008 (Updated 15 April 2009)

As you will no doubt have seen, Dell have released a new 24" model to replace the issue-laden 2407WFP-HC from last year. We discussed the main problem with the 2407WFP-HC in depth in our article about the much talked about ghosting issue. Rather than release a fix for this black ghosting, Dell decided to replace the 2407WFP altogether with a new, updated version: the 2408WFP. This article should hopefully cover some of the commonly asked questions about the new screen, as well as a look at some of the early issues and feedback which are appearing across the internet.

We will endeavour to keep this updated as things progress, and have already featured a full review of the screen. If you have any feedback or things to add to the discussion, please let us know! 

 
 

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Design and Changes 

The design of the new 2408WFP remains the same as its predecessor, rather than following in the footsteps of the updated 3008WFP model. The design had changed since the 2405FPW model and there were no real issues with this anyway. Ergonomically and connectivity-wise, the screen remains extremely impressive. Dell have even added a couple of additional interfaces to the range here. The main change with the new model is the addition of an HDMI and DisplayPort interface, which are also featured on the 3008WFP. The spec has changed slightly as listed below, but remains quite similar to the 2407WFP-HC model.

  


Specification and Features
 

The 2408WFP offers the following:

  • 24"WS screen size

  • 1920 x 1200 resolution

  • 6ms G2G response time

  • 3000:1 dynamic contrast ratio (1300:1 static)

  • 400 cd/m2 brightness

  • 178/178 viewing angles

Dell have confirmed the panel is S-PVA technology, but we have yet to see a matching panel module from Samsung. I would imagine it will be an updated version of the LTM240CS panel, since the 03 and 05 versions are mentioned in their range, but differences from the 01 (as used in the 2407WFP-HC) are not identified. We will confirm this with Samsung and update when we hear more. The backlighting used is a 7x CCFL U-type system and offers an extended colour gamut covering 102% of the NTSC space (this is also sometimes listed as 110%, where different references are used. CIE1976 = 110% and CIE1931 = 102%) . This is a slight improvement since the 97% gamut coverage offered by the 2407WFP-HC. The screen does offer a standard sRGB option within the OSD to emulate standard gamut situations. 

This model offers the following interface options:

  • D-sub (VGA)

  • 2x DVI-D (HDCP supported)

  • S-video

  • Composite

  • Component

  • HDMI

  • DisplayPort

The screen has a height adjustable stand (100mm), swivel function (45ļ left and right), tilt (21ļ forward and 3ļ backward), rotate (landscape and portrait) and is 100mm VESA compliant.

 

There is also an integrated 4 port USB 2.0 hub and 9-in-2 card reader. The features remain pretty similar to the 2407WFP model, which was already very impressive in this regard, but now with the added HDMI and DisplayPort interfaces.

 


Colour Reproduction and Accuracy  


You can read our full in depth analysis of the 2408WFPís colour performance in our review. Included here are some other tests and reports from elsewhere, which are handy for reference. These users have carried out some calibration reports on the screen using the LaCie Blue Eye Pro software package and Eye-One Display 2 hardware colorimeter device. These additional images and reports are courtesy of monitortest.blogspot review and glitch from OcUK forums.

 

 

The above image shows the results of LaCie's software test and report feature after calibration against the sRGB standard. The CIE diagram on the left shows that the colour gamut extends quite considerably beyond the sRGB colour space, as you would expect to see from the specified 102% NTSC gamut.  Luminance is very high at default settings as is common with many screens in todays market, and in pre-calibrated tests it has been recorded at around 305 cd/m2. Black depth is at least good at 0.27 cd/m2, and this gives us a static contrast ratio of 1130:1. Here it has been nicely corrected to 120 cd/m2, and this gives a black depth of around 0.13 cd/m2 (contrast ratio of 923:1). Gamma is a little out at 2.3 at default settings (desired 2.2), and colour temperature is 6894k (desired 6500k). However, again, both are corrected nicely after calibration.

Out of the box, DeltaE is on average 4.6 and so colour accuracy is not great at default settings, with a noticeable difference between the requested and displayed colours. After calibration, dE was now on average only 0.4, and that is an impressive result. Clearly the 2408WFP and its S-PVA panel are capable of some very good colour accuracy once calibrated properly. 

The following image shows the black depth and contrast ratio of the Dell 2408WFP as compared with several other popular 24" models in the market. Image courtesy of monitortest.blogspot review, with information also taken from BeHardware. As you can see, the black depth of the 2408WFP is impressive at 0.18 cd/m2 (with luminance at 200 cd/m2), and contrast ratio is quite near to the specified 1300:1.

 

 
Performance in Other Areas
 


We won't go into too much detail here, but I would recommend reading our review along with the user feedback and reviews linked in the 'further information' section below. Since the panel ultimately remains very similar to the 2407WFP model, the performance should be pretty comparable with the 2408WFP. Our review and other user reports show that responsiveness is very good, but then again there was no update from the 2407WFP anyway in this regard. Viewing angles are to be expected from an S-PVA panel, with wide fields of view available in all directions. Being VA based, the matrix does suffer from the acute viewing contrast shift as you move away from a central field of view, and 'black crush' due to viewing angle restrictions. Panel uniformity will vary as it is related to build quality and stock, but most reports suggest it has been good so far.
 

Read the TFTCentral Full Review: http://www.tftcentral.co.uk/reviews/dell_2408wfp.htm

 


A New Model, New Issues? 

With the release of an updated model comes talk of possible issues with the screen. Remember, this is in its A00 revision stage and Dell have done well in the past to address certain reported issues and get things sorted. Way back when the 2xx7WFP series was originally released we discussed a whole host of issues which consumers identified, including text blurring and the much talked about 'colour banding issue'. These were eventually addressed with firmware updates and the later A03 / A04 revisions were widely regarded as being pretty much trouble free. 

With the release of the HighColor (HC) edition of the 2407WFP, Dell updated the Samsung S-PVA panel used (the LTM240CS01 instead of LTM240M2 module). This lead to some unfortunate new issues linked to poorly controlled RTC (overdrive) impulses, and a characteristic black ghosting trail on certain colour transitions was evident. As we discussed earlier, Dell decided it was not possible / practical to fix this issue and have instead replaced the screen with the 2408WFP.  It should be noted that so far there have been no reports of this black ghosting issue on the 2408WFP or any similar problems.  

Important note: The below summarises several 'issues' which have been reported so far for the 2408WFP. It should be noted that not everyone sees these problems and some could well be quite isolated. Do not rely on them being a definitive problem with the screen until we have more supporting evidence or information. For now, this should serve hopefully as a guide to some things which are being discussed in the early stages of the screens release. If you experience problems or are dissatisfied with the screen, try some of the suggested fixes below, or simply arrange to return the screen for a replacement or refund. 

 


Colour Banding 

There have been some early reports of colour banding across gradients, something which proved a problem with early revisions of the 2407WFP and 2007WFP models due to the activated Faroudja Video Processing suite. This was solved eventually on the previous models, but there have been some early reports with the 2408WFP. 

TheBlackHole, a user from Dell's community forums states the following: "The worst thing to me is that this monitor suffer of strong color banding (on gradients). I have tried every preset (from factory preset to monitor standard preset) and I also have hardware-calibrated the monitor (via the eye-one GretagMacbeth calibrator) but the banding doesn't go away. My settings are Brightness:30, Contrast:62, User-Color with R:82, G:89, B:86. The monitor is connected via DVI-D through an NVidia 6600GT. The color temperature was set to 6500K with gamma at 2.2. I've made the gradients banding test with some tools around the web with the same results (strong banding)." 


Above: photo of grey gradients displayed on Dell 2408WFP showing some banding in darker tones. As reported by some users
 

Other users however have noticed no real issues, especially in comparison with the early 2xx7WFP models. It could well be that some are seeing slight gradation of colours, especially in darker tones, but this can be common on a lot of LCD displays. This is what we witnessed when we tested the screen.  Correct calibration is important if you are seeing any issues which you want to try and rectify. It is unclear at this stage whether this is a big issue or not, but it does appear it is nowhere near as obvious as the quite terrible banding we saw on the early 2xx7WFP revisions. In normal use and practice, it seems it is very difficult to spot any real issue on the 2408WFP in this regard, but you can detect it sometimes on colour gradients.  It should be noted that in the monitortest.blogspot review the reviewer observed smooth gradients on their calibrated monitor settings, and we saw no real issues in our tests either.  

Update 15/4/09: ChrisM from Dell has emailed to give the following update: "Banding. Never had banding issue on 2408WFP. Check Nvidia settings such a color correction/color profile/advance to eliminate bands. Standard causes bands."

 


Sharpness 
 

According to some users there appears to be an issue around the sharpness of the image, and the setting for sharpness is even available when using the DVI interface. This manifests itself in some slight colour shadows around text and appears to be quite difficult to resolve to everyone's satisfaction. Activating ClearType may help to a degree, but is not always favourable to users. 
 

TheBlackHole (Dell forums) states: "The 'sharpness' of the monitor is not well adjustable. The monitor support 5 levels of sharpness (0, 25, 50, 75, 100). Default is 50 but it's too strong because on fine details/font often the sharpness change the 'color'. I mean.. If a small font is blue then the sharpness 'paint' a pink color around the edges (of the text). The value of 25 is too weak since is cleary unfocused."  
 

The monitortest.blogspot review says: "Another little detail I can mention is a kind of greenish halo or shadows on texts. Itís more visible when surfing Internet, depending on the content. This effect can be minimized practically to zero with proper calibration. Also a subject to brightness control level."  
 

Other users also report the issue is most noticeable on blue text, where a reddish edge appears. Some say setting the OSD sharpness to 25 solves this, if being ever so slightly blurry, and are happy with this as a resolution. It may well be that a firmware upgrade could fix this, as it did with the A01 version of the 2407WFP when it was released. To be honest, when we tested the screen for this issue, we could see no issues at all, and this was at the default 50 sharpness setting.

 

Update 16/4/08: ChrisM from the Dell forums has states that "We will be changing the sharpness increments to 10. Give us time. No eta," and that "It will have to be an exchange." So looks like they are working on a firmware fix for this in the future. Again, some people don't see it at all, and we didn't notice any issues with it in our review. At least Dell are addressing it for those who do find it a problem, but a return of the screen will probably be needed as and when they do release an update.
 

Update 15/4/09: ChrisM from Dell has emailed to give us an update confirming this issue was addressed with rev A01 of the screen

 


Input Lag
 

This example video was posted by dan^uk from OcUK forums comparing the 2408WFP in clone mode with the Viewsonic VP2030b. This second video shows the lag via a stopwatch, again compared to the Viewsonic VP2030b. The lag shown is commonly 30 - 50ms, but remember this is compared with the VP2030b which would in turn show a degree of lag compared with a CRT screen.

Other users have tested the screen in clone mode with a CRT and confirm a typical input lag of between 45 and 60ms, most often nearer the higher end. We confirmed there was an average input lag of around 64ms in our tests, and compared with the average input lag of 34.3ms which we measured on the 2407WFP-HC in our review, the performance of the new version is obviously a little behind. It is debatable how many people would actually see any adverse affect from this in practice, but the input lag is nevertheless considered pretty high.

Update 15/4/09: ChrisM from Dell has emailed to give us an update confirming the high input lag was addressed to some degree with rev A01 of the screen

 


'DLP-Like' Rainbow Effects 

Something which you can spot on some DLP TV sets, this artefact can sometimes be recreated and spotted by running a white / pale cursor or DOS window across a black background. As you move this across the screen, and dart your eyes across to keep up, you may spot rainbow-type trails where the cursor used to be in various colours, particularly red and green. Some users have reported this as a problem on the 2408WFP, but many others do not spot it. Some users report that adjusting the OSD brightness setting to 65% or above helps eliminate this problem. You may well need to calibrate your screen or adjust settings at a GFX card level to get a comfortable luminance though, as 65% is likely to be a little overbearing in regular use if other settings are not altered. This is more of a human eye 'feature' than a particular issue with the screen, and my advice would be to not worry about this too much, don't bother going to look for it if you can't spot it, as it will only annoy you! We didnít really spot it in our tests despite our efforts to recreate the issue.

Update 15/4/09: ChrisM from Dell has emailed to give us an update stating that there are "No known issues reported from the field."

 


Red and Green Tinting
 

Some users have reported a slight red / pink tint across the screen, often limited to only certain areas of the image and sometimes only evident while the screen warms up for the first 5 - 10 minutes. Calibration seems to do nothing, but some have RMA-ed the screen and received perfect replacements, suggesting a possible fault rather than wide-spread fundamental flaw. Some users have spotted a similar green colour tinting, often visible on blacks or shadows. Again, this doesn't seem to be commonly reported, but some have spotted it. We saw some slight pink tinting in our tests, but it was very slight and not really something you will notice in day to day use I donít think. It is unclear whether this is a big issue or not, but it looks currently like it is quite isolated and probably more related to faulty units than anything else. 

Update 15/4/09: ChrisM from Dell has emailed to give us an update stating that "Issue resolved soon after mass production. Rev A00"

 


Power Supply Buzzing
 


 

Some users have reported a quiet buzzing noise from the integrated power supply. However, this seems to commonly disappear if you adjust OSD brightness above 65%. We didnít notice any noise from our test unit to be honest.

 

Update 15/4/09: ChrisM from Dell has emailed to give us an update stating that there are "No known issues reported from the field."

 


Updated Monitor Revisions - A01

 

30/4/08 - A Dell representative has recently hinted on the Dell US support forums, that the A01 revision of the 2408WFP monitor would hopefully be available soon. ChrisM told everyone to "Quit getting exchanges until I give the word....I would wait until at least the 20th of May." This could mean that the new revision is available before the end fo May, and many users are hoping Dell will have addressed some of the early reported issues with the screen.

We remember back to the release of the 2xx7WFP models, where Dell addressed the colour banding issues which users were reporting, and hopefully the new reports of colour tinting, text blur and uniformity issues will now be fixed on the 2408WFP. We will of course not know which aspects have been addressed until details of the A01 revision are available, or until users start to receive the new version. Some users outside of the US have been told by their respective technical support teams that their replacement models would be A01, but as yet, noone has received one. We'll update our article as more information arrives. 
 


Further Reading and Resources:
 

Dell 2408WFP Review (TFT Central)

 

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