capsule review

Hyundai ImageQuest Q90U

At a Glance
  • Hyundai Q90U

    PCWorld Rating

    The low response time spec conferred no advantage on motion tests. The two USB 2.0 ports are easy to reach.

Hyundai ImageQuest Q90U
Photograph: Rick Rizner, Chris Manners

The Hyundai ImageQuest Q90U provides features and image quality that you'd expect from a more expensive monitor--but it's not expensive at all. Priced under $400, this model is a great value.

Overall, the Q90U posted high scores for screen quality. Our jurors especially liked its color balance on our photo test screens of a group portrait and a fruit tart. It performed well on the small letters in our Microsoft Excel text screen, too. Its only weak score occurred on grayscale text, where the Q90U had trouble making dark patches stand out against a dark background.

The Q90U's features rise far above the expected for a budget monitor. It ships with ImageTune, Hyundai ImageQuest's branded version of Portrait Displays's Display Tune screen adjustment software. In addition to the usual wizards and test screens for fine-tuning brightness, contrast, and color, the Q90U's version includes a theft deterrent plug-in. This preinstalled plug-in lets you password-protect the monitor so that it won't work if it's removed from your PC and set up elsewhere by someone who doesn't enter the password. A sticker on the monitor describes the function; whether it's as effective as a burglar alarm sign remains to be seen. I suspect it's most useful for preventing departmental infighting by keeping monitors in the offices or rooms they start in.

Adjusting the tilt and height functions takes a little more muscle than it should, but having any height adjustment at all is a big plus for anyone with ergonomic concerns. The Q90U sports two USB 2.0 ports, both easily accessible on the right side of the stand. It also includes passably good speakers--not the best for constant listening, but adequate for computer prompts and the occasional media snippet.

In theory, screens with low response times deliver smooth movement and little motion artifacting. However, our real-world tests detected no discernible difference between the motion quality of the Q90U, with its very fast stated response time of 3 milliseconds, and other recent monitors with slower response-time specs.

The Hyundai ImageQuest Q90U offers good screen quality and features that are unexpected at its low price.

Laura Blackwell

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At a Glance
  • PCWorld Rating

    The low response time spec conferred no advantage on motion tests. The two USB 2.0 ports are easy to reach.

    Pros

    • Good screen quality
    • Low price

    Cons

    • Stiff physical adjustments
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