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Dell P2418HT review

One of the only touch screen monitors with a matte finish on the screen, the Dell P2418HT is a touch screen monitor in disguise.

Dell P2418HT review
(Image: © Dell)

Our Verdict

If you’re looking for a touch screen monitor with a matte finish, then the Dell P2418HT is one of the only choices on the market. Luckily it’s a great monitor, with highly adjustable stand, great screen and sleek design.

For

  • Easily adjustable stand
  • Stylish design with small bezel
  • Good screen

Against

  • High input lag
  • Can wobble during use

Dell is a big name in monitors, and with the Dell P2418HT says it has eliminated the need for the usual glass cover on the touchscreen, allowing them to style it like a traditional monitor with a striking matte finish. If you’re on the hunt for the best touch screen monitors, but can’t stand the glossy finish that comes with them, then the Dell P2418HT might be the one for you.

It’s not a one-trick pony though. The Dell P2418HT is well-designed in almost every aspect. The stand is one of the most sophisticated designs that we’ve seen, with a flexible arm that lets you move the screen in any direction to get the best possible viewing angle. The Dell P2418HT had an MSRP of $399.99 when it launched a few years back, but we’ve consistently seen it on sale for closer to $300 in 2020.

Dell P2418HT review: Design

  • Sleek design with small bezel
  • Matte finish on screen reduces glare

Of all the touch screen monitors that we’ve tested, the Dell P2418HT looks the most like a traditional monitor. There’s no garish design choices and the edge of the screen is surrounded by a relatively small 5mm bevel, which keeps the Dell P2418HT looking rather sleek and stylish. if you're looking for a touch screen monitor that announce its presence, try the Acer T232HL.

The Dell P2418HT has a matte surface and a lot of flexibility for a touchscreen display.

The Dell P2418HT has a matte surface and a lot of flexibility for a touchscreen display. (Image credit: Future)

One noticeable design choice that might split consumer opinion is the screen’s matte finish. This is due to the anti-glare hard coating, which protects the screen, but it also gives it a matte look that some users might dislike. All the other screens that we tested have a typical gloss finish to them. When testing the Dell P2418HT, our sister site - Tom’s Hardware - found that the screen still picked up fingerprints and gave off a brief glow if you pressed down "more than gently" on the screen, which we also observed. At the same time, the matte finish doesn’t reflect nearby light sources nearly as much, so it all comes down to what you prefer.

Dell P2418HT review: Screen quality

  • Full HD ten-point touch screen.
  • Great brightness and color accuracy
  • High input lag

We’ve already mentioned the love it or hate it matte finish on the screen, but how do the rest of the specs stack up? Well it’s a full HD screen with a 1920x1080 pixel resolution. During our testing we thought that the brightness capabilities were suitably impressive and the color accuracy was better than most of the other monitors that we tested too. It’s the same story with the response time, which is a measure of how quickly a pixel changes color. A good response time means that it’s a great screen for watching movies or playing games on.

Sadly there is one fly in our monitor’s ointment - the input lag. At 15 milliseconds, the Dell P2418HT had one of the worst input lag times of all the monitors that we tested. Input lag is a measure of how long it takes instructions (mouse movements, touch screen taps etc.) to be registered by the device. It’s not earth shattering and you’ll only really notice if you’re playing games, but it’s still disappointing to see.

This Dell display is attached to a flexible arm atop an upright stand.

This Dell display is attached to a flexible arm atop an upright stand. (Image credit: Future)

The touch screen itself works well, featuring ten-point touch capability. This means it can track ten different touch points at once, allowing you to perform multi-touch maneuvers like zooming in by pinching your fingers together.

Dell P2418HT review: Usability

  • Highly adjustable stand
  • Screen can move slightly during use

One of our favorite features on the Dell P2418HT is the stand, which is a flexible articulating arm attached to the back of the screen. This means that the screen can easily be adjusted on the fly, allowing you to move it forwards and backwards, as well as up and down. You can even slide the screen down into a 60 degree titled orientation that makes it perfect for drawing on.

The downside to this flexibility is that the screen can wobble around a bit when you’re using the touch screen functions and don’t have the bottom of the screen flush with your desk. It’s not going to shake around like there’s an earthquake, but it is noticeable. 

Mercifully, the OSD controls for brightness, contrast, etc. are on the bottom edge of the screen, meaning you won’t accidentally knock them while using the touch screen. This is a mistake that some of the other touch screen monitors we tested have made (we're looking at you, Planar Helium PCT2235), so it’s good to see Dell thinking with its (collective) head on the design of the Dell P2418HT.

Should you buy the Dell P2418HT? 

The Dell P2418HT is a well-designed, stylish monitor that will blend in seamlessly with your home-office set up. Unless they happen to poke the screen, most people won’t even know it’s a touch screen at first thanks to the classic monitor stylings and matte finish. That same matte finish can be divisive though, so be sure to check out a few options and see whether you prefer matte or gloss.