With the overflow of excitement from the XL2420T their other major release this year was brushed aside somewhat. The BenQ RL2450HT is dubbed a ‘professional RTS gaming monitor’, which contrasts with the XL2420T which is aimed primarily at the FPS gaming crowd. A key distinction between these two models is that the RL supports a 60Hz refresh rate rather than 120Hz; it is less responsive and lacks the 3D capabilities of the ‘XL’ but is also significantly cheaper. The monitor has been co-developed with the professional team of Starcraft 2 gamers known as ‘Stardale’ (‘Bomber’, ‘July’ and ‘Ace’) and features a special ‘RTS mode’ designed to maximise visibility in dark areas. A key feature of the ‘RL’ series which has been carried over from the new ‘XL’ series is the new ‘Black Equalizer’ which is supposed to enhance visibility in dark areas without upsetting the gamma of brighter areas. It isn’t yet clear whether this feature is available when the monitor is not running the RTS preset – the ‘XL’ has this feature restricted to the FPS preset modes. Another feature inherent to BenQ’s current gaming monitors is ‘Smart Scaling’ which allows the monitor to simulate various screen sizes and aspect ratios to fit viewing preferences or specific tournament rules.
The basic specifications of the RL2450HT include a 24″ LED-backlit TN panel screen with a 1920 x 1080 resolution, 60Hz refresh rate. The monitor features a 2ms grey to grey response time with AMA (Advanced Motion Acceleration pixel overdrive) enabled or 5ms basic response time with AMA disabled. The specified luminance is 250 cd/m2, which is noticeably lower than the retina-searing 350 cd/m2 of the ‘XL’. Really this is more than enough brightness for your typical home setup and for a monitor that doesn’t have to overcome the dimming effect of 3D glasses. The monitor features a DVI port, two HDMI ports, a VGA port and headphone jack. The stand is height-adjustable by 4.3 inches (110mm) and can be swivelled 45 degrees either side, pivoted (rotated) into portrait mode and tilted forwards 5 degrees and backwards 15 degrees. As you can see in the picture above the RL50 shares the matte black bezel and touches of red on the monitor stand with the XL20. The buttons are pressible on this one rather than touch sensitive but they give you access to the new ‘Intuitive UI’ OSD (On Screen Display) for settings adjustments.
The monitor is now available in the United Kingdom at an RRP of just under £200 and is expected to reach North America, Asia and Pacific regions shortly. Price outside the UK is to be confirmed. A model with fixed (tilt only) stand, the RL2450H, is also scheduled for release at a slightly lower price.