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16
Monitor Reviews by NCX / TN Paradise
« on: April 26, 2019, 03:52:35 am »
Calibrated Image Quality

DSC_0225 by Dr NCX, on Flickr

ViewSonic VX2458-mhd Calibrated Chart by Dr NCX, on Flickr

DispCal Gui Calibration Verification
Spoiler (hover to show)

Calibration only slightly improves the image quality, as well as provides the proper balance between the preset gamma which is slightly too low, and the Text Viewing Mode's slightly too high gamma which makes some colors and shades slightly too dark.  The VX2458-mhd offers good image quality for a TN before and after calibration, and is one of the best TN panels I have tested.  The calibrated image quality is pretty much the same as the Acer XF240H and ViewSonic XG2402 I tested, both of which are slightly more accurate, but less vibrant since the VX2458-mhd over-saturates colors more.  The lack of very obvious dark scene banding is what sets the VX2458-mhd apart from modern TN panels, however it is still important to note that it still suffers from some obvious banding compared to good AHVA, IPS, PLS and VA panels when viewing dark content, especially low bit rate content such as low quality streamed content from Twitch and YouTube.  Calibration removes the preset light red tint and raises the gamma slightly resulting in some colors and shades becoming darker and less washed out, however the differences are minimal and not worth buying a colorimeter for.

The ViewSonic looks good before and after calibration for a TN panel, especially since no settings need to be changed when set to 144hz since it does not suffer from an obvious contrast, gamma and uniformity drop when set from 60 to 144hz.  I must emphasize and repeat the fact that it "looks good for a TN" since it still looks obviously washed out compared to good AHVA/IPS/PLS and VA panels with proper gamma, especially when comparing content with colors and shades which span from the top to bottom of the panel, such as the horizontal and vertical grey bars in some of the below comparisons.


ViewSonic VX2458-mhd Grassy Field

DSC_0339 by Dr NCX, on Flickr


Qnix QX2710 Grassy Field

DSC_0384 by Dr NCX, on Flickr

ViewSonic VX2458-mhd Back & Grey

ViewSonic VX2458-mhd Back & Grey by Dr NCX, on Flickr


Qnix QX2710 Black & Grey

Qnix QX2710 Black & Grey by Dr NCX, on Flickr


ViewSonic VX2458-mhd Dead Island Sea Market
Spoiler (hover to show)

Notice how the bottom horizontal grey bar is a much light shade of grey than the top bar since the bottom half of the panel has much lower gamma than the top which causes colors and shades to be much lighter than they're supposed to be.


Qnix QX2710 Sea Market
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ViewSonic VX2458-mhd Metro 2033
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Qnix QX2710 Metro 2033
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Notice much less dark the top portion of the panel is and how much more detail is visible since the PLS panel does not suffer from vertical gamma shift while TN panels do which results in loss of detail in the top quarter of the panel.  The bottom quarter of the PLS panel is also darker and properly saturated while the TN panel is washed out.

ViewSonic VX2458-mhd Field Sunset
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Qnix QX2710 Field Sunset
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Un-Calibrated versus Calibrated Gallery

ViewSonic VX2458-mhd Un-Calibrated versus Calibrated 1

ViewSonic VX2458-mhd Un-Calibrated vs Calibrated by Dr NCX, on Flickr


ViewSonic VX2458-mhd Un-Calibrated versus Calibrated 2

ViewSonic VX2458-mhd Un-Calibrated vs Calibrated 4 by Dr NCX, on Flickr


ViewSonic VX2458-mhd Un-Calibrated versus Calibrated 3

ViewSonic VX2458-mhd Un-Calibrated vs Calibrated 3 by Dr NCX, on Flickr

18
Monitor Reviews by NCX / Banding
« on: April 26, 2019, 03:51:42 am »
Banding

Dawn Engine Banding by Dr NCX, on Flickr

AUO TN panels tend to suffer from very obvious and frankly horrific banding when viewing the above Dawn Engine image, as well as when viewing this 60fps Westworld trailer.  These three monitors all suffer from the same obvious banding when displaying the above image

Dawn Engine Banding

Dell S2417DG Banding 2 by Dr NCX, on Flickr


Westworld Banding
Spoiler (hover to show)


The BenQ Zowie RL2460, Dell S2719DGF and ViewSonic VX2458-mhd (all tested by me) are free from very obvious banding when viewing both the Dawn Engine image and Westworld trailer both before and after calibration, but I did see minor banding and compression artifacts not present on my AHVA, IPS and PLS panels when viewing some dark content on the TN panels listed above.  The banding is caused by both the source and the monitors.  If I zoom in very closely to the Dawn Engine image on my ViewSonic VP2780-4K (8 bit +FRC 4K IPS with 14 3D LUT) a tiny bit of banding is preset.  Here are the BenQ Zowie RL2460 and ViewSonic VX2458-mhd

BenQ Zowie RL2460 TN Panel Dawn Engine Lights On
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Qnix QX2710 PLS Panel Dawn Engine Lights On
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Samsung F2380MX C-PVA Panel Dawn Engine Lights On
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ViewSonic VX2458-mhd TN Panel Dawn Engine Lights On
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When the lights are off a bit of banding is visible, especially on the F2380MX which performs the worst despite using a true 8 bit panel, though the banding is only very obvious when viewing the monitor off angle.

None of the monitors mentioned suffer form obvious banding when displaying this screen shot from The Order 1886 which I display and take a photo of every monitor I test

Reddit Posts with banding:
https://www.reddit.com/r/Monitors/comments/9jjcio/24_1080p_144hz_gaming_monitor_without_colorbanding/
https://www.reddit.com/r/Monitors/comments/95t20w/dell_s2417dg_s2716dg_owners_is_color_banding/

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Monitor Reviews by NCX / Faith In AUO Restored
« on: April 26, 2019, 03:51:11 am »
Preset Color Accuracy

DSC_0299 by Dr NCX, on Flickr

ViewSonic VX2458-mhd Preset Color Chart by Dr NCX, on Flickr
ViewSonic VX2458-mhd 144hz Standard Mode (Default) versus Text Mode Gray Scale
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Lagom Banding and White Saturation Tests

ViewSonic VX2458-mhd 144hz Standard Mode (Default) versus Text Mode Gamma
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ViewSonic VX2458-mhd 144hz Standard Mode (Default) versus Text Mode Color Gamut
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The VX2458-mhd is preset to the Standard Viewing Mode which is the best color preset since it is the most accurate as well as allows one to edit the color and Response Time settings.  The Standard mode has slightly to low preset gamma which causes colors and shades to be too light or bright, and look marginally washed out compared a display with nearly linear 2.2 gamma.  Unfortunately there is no way to improve the gamma with a colorimeter and calibration programs since the Black Stabilization setting (preset to 50/100) raises the gamma too much and non-linearly when lowered resulting in black crush.  The Standard mode is fairly accurate, but is slightly washed out due to the slightly too low preset gamma, as well as suffers from a light preset red tint.  Though flawed, the VX2458-mhd offers good image quality for a TN panel, especially when considering how minor the preset color accuracy flaws are, how competitively priced it is and that it suffers from less vertical gamma shift than most TN panels which allows it to provide more accurate, homogeneous and vibrant image quality.

The Text Viewing Mode raises the gamma a bit too much which increases the vibrancy, but also causes a bit of black crush since dark greys darken a bit and blend.  The Text Viewing mode also locks the Response Time setting to the Standard mode which has significantly slower pixel response times resulting in more color streaking (ghosting) than the default Advanced Response Time setting which is not select-able. 

20
Monitor Reviews by NCX / Avoid Them
« on: April 26, 2019, 03:50:31 am »
Input Lag

DSC_0311 by Dr NCX, on Flickr

The ViewSonic can be considered delay free or to have negligible input lag since it has a sub 3ms (top screen Leo Bodnar measurement) delay at 60hz.  Most non-professionally oriented monitors have equally as low input lag while very few TV's have less than 10ms when tested with the Leo Bodnar device.  PRAD used an oscilloscope and measured a 1.2ms signal delay at 144hz which they combine with half the average pixel response times for a total value of 4.6ms.

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The VX2458-mhd's overdrive setting named Response Time is located in the Manual Image Adjust menu, and offers three settings: Standard, Advanced and Ultra Fast.  The Response Time setting is preset to Advanced which is the best setting for 60hz (console gaming) while the Ultra Fast setting is the best for 120 (Xbox One X) and 144hz.  The Ultra Fast setting causes obvious dark overshoot ghosting at 60hz, and some of Viewing Modes such as the Text Mode lock the Response Time settings and set it to the Standard mode resulting in slower pixel response times and more obvious streaking.  Overshoot ghosting appears in the form of bright, colored or dark transparent halos or glow on colors and shades in motion.

Dell U2713H Obvious Overshoot Ghosting Example
Spoiler (hover to show)

At 144hz the default Advanced Response Time overdrive setting provides very fast and overshoot free pixel responses times when the default Standard Viewing Mode is selected.  The Standard Viewing modes provides the best image quality and gaming performance out of all the Viewing Modes since the others are either significantly less accurate and/or lock the the Response Time setting to the Standard mode which while still fast, obviously provides slower pixel response times than the higher Response Time settings.  The overdrive performance offered by both the Advanced and Ultra Fast response time settings is excellent, but typical for modern 144hz TN panels, and thus not an area of performance to rave about.  For example, the VX2458-mhd offers nearly identical performance to the Acer XF240H and ViewSonic XG2402 I tested, and PRAD's oscilloscope measurements of the pixel response times prove that it offers similar performance to many other monitors.  PRAD's oscilloscope measurements prove the VX2458-mhd's Ultra Fast Response Time setting also provides slightly better performance than the XG240R's best setting which is the Faster setting.



Such minute pixel response time differences are irrelevant to 99.99% of users, but the VX2458-mhd is significantly cheaper and more accurate and consistent preset color accuracy wise. 


VX2458-mhd Response Time Flaws

I observed a bit of obvious dark transparent black overshoot ghosting on the white clouds in the blue sky of the Overwatch map Illios when using the Ultra Fast overdrive setting at 144hz and quickly panning the camera and dragging this screen shot around:


It's quite common for monitors to suffer from a bit of obvious (to an experienced LCD user) dark overshoot or white streaking on the clouds when they move quickly across the screen as the result of a camera pan (via controller or mouse) in game.  When the Advanced Response time setting is used a tiny bit of white streaking occurs on the clouds while the Ultra Fast setting causes a bit of dark transparent overshoot, and is inferior when dealing with high contrast light blue colors and white, but superior for everthing else.

Tiny grey streaks are visible at the top of the Eiffel tower when the ghosting test speed is increased from 960 to 1440 pixels per second, and when both the Advanced and Ultra Fast settings are used, but the Ultra Fast setting suffers from slightly less since it speeds of the pixel response times slightly.

VX2458-mhd 144hz Advanced vs Ultra Fast Close Up
Spoiler (hover to show)

In the Response Time Test UFO Ghosting photo comparison above the photos also show that the light trailing after or ghost images (color streaking) in the Advanced Response Time photos are reduced, but replaced by a darker transparent trail (overshoot) in the Ultra Fast photo.

60hz Response Time Advanced versus Ultra Fast
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The default Advanced Response Time setting provides the best 60hz performance comparable to the best 60hz TN panels such as the BenQ Zowie RL2460HT which along with the VX2458-mhd offer marginally better performance than the Acer XF240H and ViewSonic XG2402 I tested, both of which have worse image quality than the VX2458-mhd.  As expected, the VX2458-mhd is slightly faster than the fastest 60hz AHVA/IPS/PLS panels like the Acer XB321HK. 

At all refresh rates the VX2458-mhd offers outstanding performance since it is free from what my highly experienced and trained eyes would deem obvious color streaking or very overshoot ghosting.   At 144hz he Ultra Fast is marginally faster than the Advanced setting, but suffers from a bit of overshoot with fast light blue and white transitions (mentioned above), so very experienced display users with an eye for overshoot may want to stick with the Advanced setting.

22
Monitor Reviews by NCX / The Glare Of A Monster
« on: April 26, 2019, 03:49:35 am »
Matte Coating

DSC_0310 by Dr NCX, on Flickr
Matte Qnix QX2710 (Samsung PLS Panel)
Spoiler (hover to show)

The ViewSonic VX2458-mhd is the first 24" 1080p TN panel with a grain or sparkle free matte coating comparable to the matte coating the Dell S2719DGF and most AHVA, IPS and PLS panels use.  When viewing light colors and white I usually immediately notice that matte TN panels are grainier or sparklier than the matte AH-IPS (Acer H257HU) and matte PLS (Qnix QX2710) I've been using for two or more years.  I did not notice any obvious grain or sparkle when viewing light colors and white unless I viewed the monitor from less than 15cm away.  The light matte coating handles reflections as well as stronger and grainier matte coatings, and does not look hazy or suffer from obvious reflections:

Acer EB321HQ awi: Almost-Glossy/Low Haze Coating
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Sony 43X750F: Semi-Glossy Coating
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ViewSonic VX2458-mhd: Matte Coating
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Brightness & Contrast

DSC_0221 by Dr NCX, on Flickr

ViewSonic VX2458-mhd B & C by Dr NCX, on Flickr

The VX2458-mhd can dim down enough to be used comfortably in a light-less room since the brightness can go below 80cdm/2, and it is bright enough for sun-lit rooms since it can output over 300cdm/2 at maximum brightness.  The 870-930:1 contrast ratio is good and typical for an AUO TN panel, especially when considering the fact that quite a few AUO TN panels such as the curved 144-165hz 2560x1440 resolution TN panels have 700:1 contrast. 

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Monitor Reviews by NCX / This Is Library! Flick Is Not Tolerated!
« on: April 26, 2019, 03:48:29 am »
Flicker/PWM Dimming

DSC_0220 by Dr NCX, on Flickr

The ViewSonic is advertised as Flicker Free, which means it does not use back-light flicker or LED PWM Dimming (read about the side effects), regardless of high or low the brightness is set.  I checked for and did not see LED PWM Dimming with the Blur Busters Test UFO Blur Trail/PWM Test with 0-100% brightness settings in the ViewSonic's menu. The lack of PWM is a good since PWM or Flicker ruins motion clarity (example), and makes some people suffer from health issues such as headaches, and/or eyestrain.  PRAD's oscilloscope measurements also confirm that the VX2458-mhd is Flicker-Free as advertised, or does not use LED PWM Dimming.

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Monitor Reviews by NCX / A Cozy Set-Up
« on: April 26, 2019, 03:47:46 am »

The Free-Sync setting is the only setting which needs to be changed, and only if using a Free-Sync compatible graphics card or Xbox One X.  I do not have a Free-Sync compatible graphics card, but I did test the VewSonic with the Xbox One X.  The Free-Sync setting must be enabled in the monitors Set-Up Menu, and the Xbox One X must be restarted or power cycled for the Xbox One X to recognize the monitor as Free-Sync compatible and make the the Allow Variable Refresh Rate Option to be selected or de-selected:


DSC_0440 by Dr NCX, on Flickr

Refer to the Xbox 360 & Xbox One section of the review for console settings.


Response Time/Overdrive Control
Spoiler (hover to show)

The Advanced Response Time is the default setting, and may be considered to be the best by those sensitive to the tiny amount of overshoot the Ultra Fast setting causes.  Read the Ghosting/Overdrive part of the review for my in-depth analysis.  The Response Time setting is located in the Manual Image Adjust menu.

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Monitor Reviews by NCX / Paradise Not Included
« on: April 26, 2019, 03:47:24 am »
Features & Stand

DSC_0296 by Dr NCX, on Flickr

The VX2458-mhd's matte, 144hz, 1920x1080 AUO TN panel supports AMD Free-Sync, is housed in sturdy black plastic casing, and has downward facing Displayport (48-144hz Free-Sync range) and HDMI ports (48-120hz at the back.  The stand only allows for tilting, is quite wobbly, and the bezel is made of glossy black plastic which reduces the perceived black depth and attracts dust.  Button indicators are located on the bottom right size of the bezel, and the buttons are on the back.  The monitor comes with a Disayplort cable and power cable.

ViewSonic VX2458-mhd

VIewSonic VX2458-mhd by Dr NCX, on Flickr

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ViewSonic VX2458-mhd product pageAMD Free-Sync Compatible GPU List.  I did not test the Free-Sync with a graphics card since I do not own a compatible gpu.

Please support my work via crypto currencies or Paypal (paypal email is thedeepinthesky@yahoo.com).  NCX's Amazon wish list

BTC address:
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ETH address:
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LTC address:
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Review Testing Methodology & PC
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Support NCX, About NCX & Site Update Log / Re: Site Update Log
« on: April 23, 2019, 06:45:56 pm »
Acer Nitro XV273K

Added the Review by Tom's Hardware and to my Best Reviewed Flicker Free 27" 4-5K AHVA/IPS/PLS buying guide.

The Acer XV273K has an accurate 144hz (achievable only when connected with 2x Displayport cables) 3840x2160 or 4K matte wide gamut AUO AHVA panel which can cover 97% of the DCI-P3 color space, and can fully cover the sRGB color space to prevent over-saturation when the sRGB mode is available, but doing so locks the color controls.  It has a fully adjustable stand, a monitor hood, 2x Displayport, 2x HDMI 2.0,4x USB 3.0 and a 3.5mm Audio Out.


AOC U2777 UHD

Added the Review by Playwares and to my Best Reviewed Flicker Free 27" 4-5K AHVA/IPS/PLS buying guide.

Matte 3840x2160 LG AH-IPS panel with Displayport, Dual-Link DVI (3840x2160 @30hz), HDMI 2.0, VGA, 4x USB 3.0 and 3.5mm In & Out.  The preset gamma (Mode 1) has low preset gamma of 2.05 which results in the monitor being washed out.  Setting the Gamma to Mode 2 increases the accuracy and gamma average to 2.26 resulting in good image quality.  It has a 22ms delay (measured with the SMT Tool) versus <8ms for most competitors.


MSI NXG251R

Added the Review by Playwares to my Best Reviewed Flicker 240hz TN Panels buying guide.

Matte 1920x1080 240hz with a fully adjustable stand, Nvidia G-Sync (30-240hz), 144hz ULMB (back-light strobing) Displayport, HDMI (60hz), 3x USB 31 and 3.5mm Audio Out.  The default Gaming mode offers fairly accurate color preset performance.  It has negligible input lag (3ms measured with the SMT Tool) and very fast pixel response times with minimal overshoot when the Fast Response Time setting is used.


Philips 276E8VJSB

Added the Review by PC Monitors and to my Best Reviewed Flicker Free 27" 4-5K AHVA/IPS/PLS buying guide.

The Philips uses a very accurate 4K fake bezel or frame-less LG AH-IPS panel with Displayport, 2x HDMI 2.0 and a 3.5mm Audio Out jack.  Set the overdrive (Response Time) to Faster for the best performance.  The unit PC Monitors tested is slightly less accurate than the other two, but still very accurate, especially when considering the price.


Samsung S27R750QEI

Added the Review by =DEAD= and Rtings to my Best Reviewed Flicker Free 144-165hz 1440p Monitors buying guides.

Non-curved and non-semi-wide gamut matte 144hz 2560x1440 Samsung VA panel with HDMI, mini-Displayport and USB 2.0.  The unit =DEAD= tested is fairly accurate aside from the low preset gamma which can be improved by selected Gamma Mode 2.  It suffers from dark scene banding, but it is not nearly as bad as the Dell S2417DG, S2716DG and ViewSonic XG2402.  It has high input lag at 60hz (25ms; Rtings measurement) for a monitor.

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Conclusion

DSC_0870 by Dr NCX, on Flickr

+Affordable and excellent
+Stable stand
+Perceived black depth increasing white plastic bezel
+Low Haze or Almost-Glossy coating enhances clarity and color vibrancy
+Nearly perfectly accurate and vibrant color presets
+Outstanding image quality for the price, especially when calibrated
+Very low glow when the brightness is not cranked in a dark room and viewed from the correct height
+Outstanding perceived contrast thanks to the low glow panel, wide viewing angles and white bezel
+Wide viewing angles
+Balanced and fast pixel response times with no overshoot ghosting
+Negligible input lag

-Very obvious back-light bleed in the bottom left corner
-1920x1080 resolution on a 32" panel does not look great when viewed from less than 75cm or 2.5ft away
-Gamma slightly too low and can be improved by changing the Black Level Setting from 5 to 3
-Only 1x HDMI and 1x VGA inputs
-Very minor color under and over-saturation

? No Free-Sync or 75hz

The Acer EB321HQ is a great budget monitor for casual gaming and media viewing since it is very accurate, has balanced overdrive, negligible input lag and a low glow and gamma shift free IPS* panel.  The white bezel and low glow panel vastly improve the perceived black depth and make the Acer far more suitable for use in dimly lit rooms than most monitors^.  The viewing angles aren't as wide as some AHVA/IPS/PLS panels, but it suffers from far less glow than most, including monitors which cost five times as much.  The Acer suffers from the least amount of glow I've seen from AHVA/IPS/PLS aside from the extremely rare and glow free Samsung LTM270DL06 2560x1440 PLS panel in my Qnix QX2710.  One has to spend vastly more on a 32" 4K AHVA panel like the BenQ PD3200U to upgrade image quality wise and not downgrade glow wise.  The Acer is not the fastest 60hz monitor around, but it's fast enough for casual gaming and provides a very immersive viewing experience thanks to the low glow panel and perceived black depth increasing white bezel.

^If viewed correctly or placed at the right height without the brightness cranked in a dark or very dimly lit room.  IPS vs TN: Right & Wrong Ways To Use Or View; How To Vastly Reduce AHVA/IPS/PLS Glow & Vastly Increase The Perceived Black Depth

*Since I did not and could not open it I'm not sure if it uses an AHVA, IPS or PLS panel, but suspect it uses an AHVA panel since their 27" 4K panel and 32" 4K panels suffer from less glow than competing IPS and PLS panels.

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