Philips 243B9 review: A superb all-rounder

The addition of USB-C connectivity makes this 1080p monitor a winner for no-frills functionality

Price
£180 exc VAT
  • Good value
  • Flexible stand
  • USB-C input
  • Slightly cheap build quality
  • Underwhelming uniformity

IT equipment is a lot like cars; while it may be fun to drool over the latest top-to-the-line models, what most people actually need is something solid and dependable which can handle the basics with minimum fuss. Step forward, the Philips 243B9 - a simple yet functional 24in 1080p monitor that fills this particular niche with aplomb.

Philips 243B9 review: Design

The 243B9’s affordable price tag is immediately evident when you look at it. While its understated design couldn’t be called ugly, the 5cm-plus thickness of its panel is substantial, and the plastic it’s constructed from feels decidedly cheap in comparison to some of Philips’ more premium models

That said, however, there’s little else to criticise about the design. The ultra-thin 2.5mm bezels give the screen itself a sleek appearance and help maximise screen space, while the stand offers a fantastic degree of adjustability, including 175 degrees of swivel, -5 to 30 degrees of tilt, 150mm of height adjustment and the ability to pivot 90 degrees in either direction for portrait mode viewing.

In addition, there’s also a clip at the rear of the stand for built-in cable management, and a standard VESA mount for attaching to a wall or monitor arm. If you want to make use of this, the clip-in system used to attach the panel to the stand is swift and simple to use.

Philips 243B9 review: Image quality

An appealing design is one thing, but if budget monitors fall down in any area, it’s usually the quality of the panel itself. Happily, this isn’t the case here; the IPS display acquitted itself capably here, with a maximum brightness of 285.62cd/m2 (slightly exceeding Philips’ claimed limit) and a 94% coverage of the sRGB colour spectrum. It may not match a professional-grade screen like the ViewSonic VP2785-2K, but it’s just about good enough for a little light design work, as is the average Delta-E of 1.34; the greens and yellows are a tad oversaturated, but not enough to cause problems for the majority of users.

Similarly, a contrast ratio of 1051:1 is a creditable result at this price, and a 75Hz refresh rate helps everything to feel buttery smooth. The panel’s uniformity is a little less than ideal - brightness tends to dip around the edges, with the biggest variance being a dip of 21.4% in the bottom left corner. However, we’re willing to overlook relatively minor quibbles like this, given how cheap this screen is.

Philips 243B9 review: Ports and features

With that low price in mind, we’re gratified to see that Philips hasn’t skimped on the 243B9’s ports. For video, there’s VGA, DisplayPort 1.2, HDMI 1.4 and a USB-C 3.2 Gen 1 port with 65W power delivery. That’s a robust complement, and the USB-C port in particular will allow you to connect a laptop, charge it and access the display’s four built-in USB 3.2 ports with a single cable. Those full-size USB ports, incidentally, also offer fast-charging power output for devices and peripherals.

Elsewhere, there’s a pair of built-in 2W speakers for audio output and a 3.5mm input jack to go with them - although we’d suggest using the other 3.5mm output jack to connect a pair of headphones or external speakers, as they’re too quiet and tinny to bother with using even for video calls.

Like the monitor itself, the OSD is simple but gets the job done, and is straightforward to navigate with the four physical buttons on the front of the panel. It’s worth having a look at too; in addition to an sRGB mode for greater colour accuracy, users can also enable options for filtering out excess blue light, different colour temperatures and features like the PowerSensor, which automatically lowers the screen’s power consumption when you step away from your desk.

Philips 243B9 review: Verdict

The Philips 243B9 is aiming for no-frills performance. And it over-delivers, thanks to its highly commendable colour accuracy, solid maximum brightness, and a selection of handy extra features to boot. It’s also highly affordable, with an asking price south of £200. 

If you want to shave even more off that number, you could go for Iiyama’s ProLite XUB2493HSU-B1, which comes in at an exceedingly wallet-friendly £108 before tax. However, the Philips has the edge over Iiyama’s monitor in terms of adjustability and - more crucially - the ProLite lacks any USB-C connectivity. If you want the extra flexibility of USB-C, it’s worth splashing out for the 243B9 - it’s the best all-rounder you’re likely to get at this price.

Philips 243B9 specifications

Screen size

23.8in

Screen resolution

1920 x 1080

Screen technology

IPS

Screen refresh rate

75Hz

Video inputs

VGA, DisplayPort 1.2, HDMI 1.4, USB-C 3.2 Gen 1

Audio inputs/outputs

3.5mm input jack, 3.5mm headphone jack

Speakers

2x 2W

Ports

4x USB 3.2

Adjustability

150mm height adjustment, -5 to 30° tilt, 175° swivel, portrait mode

Featured Resources

The ultimate law enforcement agency guide to going mobile

Best practices for implementing a mobile device program

Free download

The business value of Red Hat OpenShift

Platform cost savings, ROI, and the challenges and opportunities of Red Hat OpenShift

Free download

Managing security and risk across the IT supply chain: A practical approach

Best practices for IT supply chain security

Free download

Digital remote monitoring and dispatch services’ impact on edge computing and data centres

Seven trends redefining remote monitoring and field service dispatch service requirements

Free download

Most Popular

Best Linux distros 2021
operating systems

Best Linux distros 2021

11 Oct 2021
Apple MacBook Pro 15in vs Dell XPS 15: Clash of the titans
Laptops

Apple MacBook Pro 15in vs Dell XPS 15: Clash of the titans

11 Oct 2021
Windows 11 has problems with Oracle VirtualBox
Microsoft Windows

Windows 11 has problems with Oracle VirtualBox

5 Oct 2021