Author Topic: HP 25er & 25es Review: Almost-Glossy 1080p LG AH-IPS  (Read 1140 times)

NCX

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HP 25er & 25es Review: Almost-Glossy 1080p LG AH-IPS
« on: May 03, 2018, 12:49:50 am »

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Re-posted from the original and now archived version (08-12-2016) from the discontinued wecravegamestoo forum where I was allowed to host my content for free from 2010-February 2018.


2018: HP 25f Review: Almost-Glossy 75hz IPS with AMD Free-Sync: 25er & 25es successor with AMD Free-Sync, native 75hz, the fastest pixel response times, but worse color accuracy than the 25er & 25es, and lower color space coverage than the older models.

2017: HP 24 Envy Review: Semi-Glossy 1080p IPS with 75hz & AMD Free-Sync: The 24 Envy natively supports 75hz (no overclock required), can cover more of the HDTV/REC 709 color space than the 25-27" HP monitors, but is less accurate than the HP 25er and 25es.

2016: HP 25er/es Review: Non-overclock-able 2016 Almost-Glossy/Low Haze Monitors with slightly more accurate color presets, 2x HDMI and 1x VGA.

2015: HP 27CW, 25XW and 27XW Review: Overclock-able 2015 monitors with worse preset color accuracy than the 25er and 25es.

The 25" and 27" HP CW/er/es/XW series monitors all use the same almost-glossy (Low Haze) coating which HP describes as:

"The reflective-ness typical with glossy screen surface is appreciably reduced with the Low Haze Screen enhancement, without losing clarity and contrast of screen imagery."

HP 25-27VX: These monitors use LED PWM Dimming or Flicker which ruins motion clarity and makes some people suffer from health issues like headaches and/or eyestrain. The VX monitors have less vibrant colors since they have a smaller and less accurate color gamut capable of covering up to 92% of the sRGB color space versus the 25-27CW & XW monitors 97%, and use a pure glossy coating while the 25-27 CW & XW monitors use a treated glossy or almost-glossy coating with some ant-reflective properties.

Review Information and Methodology:
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« Last Edit: March 28, 2019, 06:33:01 pm by NCX »

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NCX

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The HP 25er and 25es use the same casing, but the back of the er monitors casing is made of white plastic instead of black plastic. Both monitors casings are made of sturdy plastic, as is the easily detach-able "floating," stand, and neither monitor can be used with third party stands since both lacks VESA screw holes. They also have the same "frame-less," design which has an inner black bezel which reduces the perceived black depth, and they have the same amount and type of inputs (2x HDMI & 1x VGA), and silver menu buttons located under the bottom right corner.
« Last Edit: May 22, 2018, 12:08:31 am by NCX »

NCX

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Menu & Set-Up

HP 25er 51
by Deepinthesky Teslastorm, on Flickr

Two settings need to be changed to get the best non-calibrated performance out of the HP 25er/es. The Contrast setting needs to be reduced from 80 to 75 to get rid of the preset green bleaching of greys visible when viewing grey shades such as the grey squares visible when viewing the Lagom White Saturation Test.

The second setting which needs to be changed is the Video Overdrive setting which controls the pixel response times. The Video Overdrive setting needs to be switched from Level 0 to Level 2, and is available under the Image Control Menu located in the main menu.
« Last Edit: January 05, 2019, 04:30:03 am by NCX »

NCX

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Flicker/PWM Dimming

HP 25er 30
by Deepinthesky Teslastorm, on Flickr


The 25" & 27" HP CW/er/es/XW series monitors are not advertised as being Flicker Free even though they do not use LED PWM Dimming (read about the side effects), regardless of high or low the brightness is set. LED PWM Dimming was tested for using the Blur Busters Test UFO Blur Trail/PWM Test from 0-100% Brightness. The lack of PWM is a good thing since PWM or Flicker ruins motion clarity (example), and makes some people suffer from health issues such as headaches, and/or eyestrain.
« Last Edit: May 04, 2018, 01:26:24 am by NCX »

NCX

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^ From Left to Right: Asus VG23AH (semi-glossy IPS), HP 25er (Almost-Glossy/Low Haze IPS), Qnix QX2710 Multi Hot (Matte AHVA), Qnix UHD3216R (Matte AHVA), SubGear AD-2701Q IPS DP (Glossy PLS)

The 25" & 27" HP CW/er/es/XW (1080p AH-IPS) monitors, HP Spectre 32 (4k AHVA; my review) and HP S27OC (1080p curved A-MVA; more information & review links) use a Low Haze Coating which I am proud to be the first to classify as an Almost-Glossy coating. HP describes the almost-glossy or Low Haze coating:

"The reflectiveness typical with glossy screen surface is appreciably reduced with the Low Haze Screen enhancement, without losing clarity and contrast of screen imagery."

The almost-glossy coating is equally as free from grain and sparkle, as well as equally as clear as a glossy coating, but is less reflective. The almost-glossy coating is also free from the white haze which semi-glossy coatings suffer from when placed under bright lighting conditions; reflections are mostly transparent and clear like they are on glossy coatings.

Fully Glossy HP 25VX versus Almost-Glossy HP 27XW

HP 25VX vs 27XW by Dr NCX, on Flickr
 
« Last Edit: Today at 12:44:17 am by NCX »

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Video Level (overdrive) Settings Compared:

HP 25es Video Level
by Deepinthesky Teslastorm, on Flickr

^The above compilations are of photos of the Test UFO Ghosting Test on the monitors featured in the compilations.  Click here to view the test


The HP er and es monitors overdrive (Video Level 0, 1, 2, 3) is preset to 0 which is a shame since Video Level 2 offers significantly faster pixel response times with minimal overshoot ghosting. The 25er and 25es's pixel response times are pretty much the same as the 25-27 CW/XW monitors from 2015. Video Level 2 provides slightly faster pixel response times than the CW/XW's best overdrive setting (Video Overdrive On), but slightly more overshoot ghosting while Level 1 is pretty much the same. Video Level 3 is useless since makes the monitors suffer from very obvious overshoot ghosting.

The er and es monitors pixel response times can compete with TN panels set to 60hz, and are superior compared to the many 60hz TN panels which suffer from obvious overshoot ghosting or slower pixel response times with their overdrive setting lowered or set to off. For example, the HP monitors overdrive is more balanced than the Asus MG248Q (Trace Free 20) and BenQ XL2420G's (AMA Off) best 60hz overdrive settings since both suffer from obvious overshoot ghosting (default overdrive settings) or more obvious color streaking compared to the majority of modern AHVA/IPS/PLS panels I reviewed.
« Last Edit: May 22, 2018, 04:26:42 am by NCX »

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Input Lag

HP 25er 44
by Deepinthesky Teslastorm, on Flickr

The HP 25" & 27" CW/er/es/XW monitors can all be considered delay free, but this is not surprising since most 1080p monitors are. Usually only multi-input 1440p-4k monitors have a around a frame (16.7ms) or two (33.33ms) of input lag. The Leo Bodnar device measures 9.7ms in the middle of the screen, but the Bodnar device has a built in delay and partially includes the monitors black-to-white pixel response times. Top screen Bodnar results are in the 3ms range, and both monitors tie with my CRT when using the SMT Tool. The actual signal delay (input lag without including the pixel response times) is likely less than a millisecond, but an oscilloscope is required to obtain the "true" value.

« Last Edit: May 03, 2018, 03:06:15 am by NCX »

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Brightness & Contrast

HP 25er B & C Chart
by Deepinthesky Teslastorm, on Flickr


The brightness range for both the 25er and 25es I tested ranged between 48-270cdm/2 which makes them suitable for all lighting conditions aside from the brightest such as outside on a sunny day. The contrast averaged around 1400:1 before the contrast reduction from 80 to 75 to get rid of the white bleaching, and over 1200:1 after which is still a great result for an AHVA/IPS/PLS panel.

Like most other 1080p IPS/PLS panels, the HP CW, er, es and XW monitors have frame-less casings which have inner black bezels which reduces the perceived black depth, or makes black look light (greyish) by comparison, but bias lighting (lamp placed behind the display) can be used to negate the need for reflection inducing room lights, and vastly increase the perceived black depth. I recommend putting a lamp behind the display with a 2600 lumen 6500k/Daylight CFL light (Philips example).

« Last Edit: May 03, 2018, 03:06:31 am by NCX »

NCX

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Default Color Presets

HP 25er Preset Chart
by Deepinthesky Teslastorm, on Flickr


The HP 25er and 25es are preset to the Technicolor preset under the Quick View menu, and Neutral under the Color menu. Both monitors color presets can be considered "identical," since they are extremely similar, and their differences are a result of the same LCD panels inability to be truly identical. The HP 27XW had the best color presets out of the 2015 HP monitors (CW & XW series), but is not as accurate as the new 25er and 25es, though they do share the same contrast issue.

The contrast issue I am referring to is one where the contrast is too high and causes white and light color shade loss or bleaching, as well as a green/yellowish (HP 27CW, 25er, 25es and 25XW) or blue-ish (HP 27XW) tint when viewing the Lagom White Saturation Test and iTunes. Reducing the Contrast from 80 to 75 eliminates the color bleaching.


The HP 25er/es have excellent color presets with preset gamma closer to the 2.2 target, but like the CW/XW monitors, their color controls are locked unless the Custom Color mode is selected under the Color Management menu. The locked color controls is not really an issue though since both have excellent color accuracy and both linear and RGB greyscale without a strong color dominance.





« Last Edit: May 22, 2018, 12:53:16 am by NCX »

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Calibrated Image Quality

HP 25er 43
by Deepinthesky Teslastorm, on Flickr

HP 25er Calibrated
by Deepinthesky Teslastorm, on Flickr

Just like the 2015 25-27" HP monitors I tested (HP 25XW, 27CW and two 27XW's), the 25er/es offers outstanding results comparable to monitors which cost five times as much. The 2er/es can cover 98% of the sRGB color space superior to most 1080p IPS/PLS monitors (85-93%), especially the 23" 1080p IPS/PLS panels as well as many TV's and monitors with VA panels which cap out around 90% and suffer from color vibrancy and accuracy reducing gamma shift. The 25er/es are not perfect though since it fails to completely cover the sRGB color space and has minor grey scale accuracy related issues, but it's still offers excellent and very accurate performance for a budget display, and is capable of providing color vibrancy with minimized glare and reflections compared to a regular glossy panel.

Fake frame-less monitors perceived black depth is marred by the frame-less casings inner black bezel, but this can be negated with the use of a bias light which I have mentioned multiple times, but will mentioned more times in this review. The frame-less casings inner black bezel does reduce the perceived black depth a bit, especially if the monitors brightness is kept cranked in a dark room, but this can be combated by turning down the brightness, and by only using a bright bias light (light placed behind the monitor when close to a wall) to vastly increase the perceived black depth. I recommend using a bright light 2600 lumen Daylight/6500k CFL (example) behind the display while keeping the brightness below 160cdm/2 in order to make black and dark content indistinguishable from the inner black bezel. A bias light can hide IPS glow as well as make an AHVA/IPS/PLS panels black depth equally as dark as a VA panel.

« Last Edit: May 03, 2018, 03:06:54 am by NCX »

NCX

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^ From Left to Right: Asus VG23AH (semi-glossy IPS), HP 25er (Almost-Glossy/Low Haze IPS), Qnix QX2710 Multi Hot (Matte AHVA), Qnix UHD3216R (Matte AHVA), SubGear AD-2701Q IPS DP (Glossy PLS)


^ From Left to Right: Asus VG23AH (semi-glossy IPS), HP 25er (Almost-Glossy/Low Haze IPS), Qnix QX2710 Multi Hot (Matte AHVA), Qnix UHD3216R (Matte AHVA), Samsung C32F391 (Almost-Glossy/Low Haze VA), SubGear AD-2701Q IPS DP (Glossy PLS)


The frame-less casings inner black bezel does ruin the perceived black depth a bit, especially if the monitors brightness is kept cranked in a dark room, but this can be combated by turning down the brightness, and by only using a bright bias light (light placed behind the monitor when close to a wall) to vastly increase the perceived black depth. I recommend using a bright 2600 lumen Daylight/6500k CFL (Philips example) behind the display while keeping the brightness below 100cdm/2 (2600 lumen light) or 140cdm/2 (5000 lumen light) in order to make black and dark content indistinguishable from the inner black bezel. A bias light can hide IPS glow as well as make an AHVA/IPS/PLS panels black depth equally as dark as a VA panel.

« Last Edit: May 03, 2018, 03:07:07 am by NCX »

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Measured Uniformity


I no longer measure display uniformity unless there are very obvious issues when viewing multiple full screen colors since doing so is both irritating and time consuming.
« Last Edit: May 03, 2018, 03:07:19 am by NCX »

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Viewing Angles

HP 25er 24
by Deepinthesky Teslastorm, on Flickr


The HP 25er/es viewing angles are exactly the same as the 27CW, 25XW and 27XW I tested in 2015. The viewing angles in no way limit regular display use, and unlike TN panels, allow one to lean back or view the display raised significantly above ones head.

HP 27CW, 25XW and 27XW Viewing Angle Photos.

« Last Edit: May 03, 2018, 03:07:30 am by NCX »

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AH-IPS Glow

HP 25er 48
by Deepinthesky Teslastorm, on Flickr


The HP 25er/es suffers from an identical amount of glow as the HP 27CW, 25XW and 27XW I tested in 2015. Glow is minimal and far less prevalent on the HP monitors compared to most other AHVA/IPS/PLS panels, especially compared to the Samsung AD-PLS E and D series monitors. When the brightness is not kept cranked in a dark room the 27CW, 25er, 25es, 25XW and 27XW can be considered nearly glow free from normal viewing positions and distances (45-60cm), and likely won't bother fans of VA panels. Dark content is a pleasure to watch on both monitors which break free from the shackles dark scene-ruining AHVA/IPS/PLS glow which normally significantly hampers their performance.

I recommend using a bright 2600 lumen Daylight/6500k CFL (Philips example) behind the display while keeping the brightness below 100cdm/2 (2600 lumen light) or 140cdm/2 (5000 lumen light) in order to make black and dark content indistinguishable from the inner black bezel. A bias light can hide IPS glow as well as make an AHVA/IPS/PLS panels black depth equally as dark as a VA panel.
« Last Edit: May 03, 2018, 03:07:40 am by NCX »