Review – Dell Ultrasharp U2515H 25″ LED Monitor
This lovely screen has been around for over a year now, and I myself have had the pleasure of using one for the past 12 months. When it came time to see what was out there on the market to upgrade, well, even after almost 2 years of being available it’s still tough to find a better screen than this within it’s price bracket and specification! This screen is standing the test of time, and Dell are still manufacturing and selling it. They are yet to have superseded it with a newer model within the same price bracket. They have released a higher end version of it, notably the Dell Ultrasharp UP2516D for image professionals but this is significantly more costly and will be a slight overkill for the average user.
Here are the screen specifications:
- 2560 x 1440 QHD Resolution – 0.216mm Pixel Pitch
- 25″ LED Backlit IPS Panel (LG AH-IPS Panel)
- 2 x HDMI (MHL), 1 x Mini DisplayPort, 1 x DisplayPort 1.2, 1 x DisplayPort Out (MST)
- Anti-Glare Non Glossy Finish
- Thin Bezel
- Tilt, Height, Swivel, & Rotate Stand
- USB 3.0 Hub
If you would like to see some more technical information, you can visit TFT Central here – they have done a very comprehensive technical write-up on this screen giving you all of the raw numbers.
Aside from the technical blurb, if you simply want to know how this monitor will benefit you and whether you should get it, keep reading.
The most common resolution in use by the average PC user is the standard Full HD 1920 x 1080. Where this resolution provides a nice pixel pitch at sizes below 22″, bigger sizes are now struggling to keep the sharpness. To give you an idea, your smartphone probably has a 1920 x 1080 resolution screen, squeezed into roughly 5 inches of screen size. When venturing out to 24″ and beyond, the Full HD resolution doesn’t cut it for clarity anymore. Where it’s fine for gaming, there is now a significant loss of real-estate. Everything just looks … big. Especially if you’re a creative professional or even an office user that wants to have two A4 documents side by side, a Full HD screen will struggle with this feat.
The new 4K era is in full flow and now it is possible to get screens as small as 25″ that are 4K (most will be 27″ and larger however). Otherwise known as Ultra HD. 3840 x 2160. This is an outrageous amount of pixels to have within say a monitor size of 25″. The sharpness and clarity will be amazing, not to mention so much real-estate that the Windows taskbar will look tiny. The only issue is cost. These screens are over the £400 price mark and even the cheapest iterations won’t bring you solid colour accuracy especially if you’re a creative professional demanding a very accurate colour palette. This is where the Dell U2515H comes into it’s own.
It’s QHD resolution of 2560 x 1440 crammed into a 25″ panel is a perfect mid-point. The DPI and pitch is tighter than a Full HD 24″ quite noticeably, and even if compared to a 27″ at 2560 x 1440 too. It’s not too small, and not too big. If it was 27″, then you can see things getting a little on the large side again at QHD and you’d also have to sit a little further away. For close-range PC use, the U2515H is perfect. I use my screen at a rough distance of 18″ from the screen and this makes for a perfect size. It’s still perfectly fine for a film at a distance much further away. For office work, it can easily display two documents side by side.
Colour reproduction is absolutely excellent. Dell calibrate these screens individually before sending them out and there is a printed report in the box. Whites are white, blacks are black, there is no ghosting with fast paced graphics (I play the occasional first-person-shooter in my spare time). Viewing angles are wide. Colour reproduction is accurate. You can see more specifics on TFT Central’s review.
For the graphic professional, this is a true 8-bit colour panel manufactured by LG (not a 6-bit panel interpolated to 8-bit), producing 16.78 million colours and covering at least 99% of the sRGB gamut. For it’s price, these specs are excellent. And what’s better, they hold up in real life too. You’ll see nothing but praise for this screen everywhere online.
The Anti-Glare coating that Dell have opted for is commonplace in the business/corporate sector. There are absolutely no reflections – you can use this screen comfortably in daylight. It’s an extremely bright monitor – I’m currently using mine at a brightness of 40 and even at this level it’s quite bright. It also keeps it energy efficient as the more you raise the backlight brightness, the higher the power consumption will be.
Build quality is what you’d expect of Dell’s Ultrasharp range. The stand is sturdy and solid, and the monitor radiates a sense of quality and purpose. The USB 3.0 hub is also a nice touch. As with any screen it’ll be awkward to get to the ports so it’s only really recommended for more permanent peripherals such as input devices. I have my keyboard, mouse, and webcam plugged into the screen.
I purchased this screen in January 2016 at a very aggressive price of £255. Dell charge just a whisker below £200 for their 24″ Ultrasharp, but this is only Full HD 1920 x 1080. Their 27″ Ultrasharp @ 2560 x 1440 goes above £400, so to be able to get a 2560 x 1440 resolution screen of this quality for around the £250 price mark is excellent, for graphic professionals alike that are on a budget but require a calibrated panel with a true 8-bit colour palette. There is no other screen that can provide the bang for buck that this screen can in this price bracket, and you know that our focus is always on the bang for your buck.
Even as of now (February 2017), the monitor has only slightly increased to £275.99. Shopping around all of the well known retailers online, we have found Amazon.co.uk to have the best price on this monitor as of today. They will likely be shipping the freshest stock of the latest revision too.