NEC EA244UHD Reviewby Chris Heinonen on August 7, 2014 2:30 PM EST
Meet the NEC EA244UHD
The NEC EA244UHD is the first UltraHD (UHD) monitor from NEC. While it's not from their professional line, it has many of the features we've come to expect in their monitors: uniformity compensation, a wider color gamut but also sRGB and AdobeRGB support, and many user configurable settings. It also has a few things NEC has never done before including SpectraView calibration support on an EA-series model and full USB 3.0.
The EA244UHD is also loaded when it comes to connectivity. There are dual DisplayPort 1.2 inputs, HDMI, HDMI with MHL, and dual DVI (but these are only single link). I wish there was a Mini DisplayPort input like Dell has on their UHD displays, but there are still enough inputs here for anyone. With so many inputs, the NEC can display a single input at once, two side-by-side (with auto-expansion), three at once, or even four where each gets a FullHD 1920x1080 area. The Auto-Expansion mode allows you to customize the width of one half of the display and the other half automatically adjusts. There is also a USB 3.0 hub with three USB 3.0 ports, and as a sign that someone is listening to comments, the headphone jack is on the side of the display instead of the bottom or rear, where it is easy to access. Hooray for small victories!
One difference with the NEC EA244UHD compared to other UHD monitors so far is that it defaults to MST being enabled for DisplayPort 1.2. With other UHD monitors I have had issues where MST would stop working, or the monitor would not come out of sleep. The NEC is designed to drop out of MST mode if a display card doesn’t support it, but I can’t test this since all my video cards do support MST. I’m not certain if MST always working correctly on the NEC is because it is enabled by default, or because video drivers have been updated since the last display to fix the problem. Whatever the reason, the NEC EA244UHD works at 60Hz without a problem.
The backlight of the EA244UHD is a G-B LED one as we have seen on other displays. This allows for a larger color gamut than traditional white LEDs but the lower power use and heat output of LEDs compared to CCFL backlights. Built into the EA244UHD are preset modes for the sRGB gamut, AdobeRGB gamut, DICOM (medical imaging), and the Native Gamut. There is also a Programmable mode, which relies on the SpectraView II software to calibrate the display.
Also in the menu system are a few more custom NEC features. The Human Sensor detects when you are at your desk and keeps the monitor on. If you’re away for a defined period of time, it will turn off. Yes, you can use the power options to do this, but there might be reasons you don’t want to do that and you can accomplish it here. The Uniformity option increases panel uniformity at the expense of maximum brightness. I always test with this on as the maximum brightness is still bright enough for almost anyone and the uniformity really does improve.
If you want to hook up more than one NEC monitor, you can chain up to six of them together. Doing so will let you adjust the brightness, mode, and other settings from a single unit. (This is just in case you need six UltraHD displays, because that sounds nice.) NEC also ships the EA244UHD fully assembled, including a stand with height, tilt, and pivot adjustments. NEC is using a new air-packing method for this display, which is a nice change from the styrofoam most people use. It weighs less, is easy to reuse and recycle, and makes no mess. Those that test 15-18 monitors a year like myself really like to see this, and I hope more vendors follow this method of packaging.
|Video Inputs||2x DisplayPort
1x HDMI 1.4a
2x Single-Link DVI
|Response Time||6ms GtG|
|Viewing Angle (H/V)||178 / 178|
|Power Consumption (operation)||79W|
|Power Consumption (standby)||0.3W|
|VESA Wall Mounting||Yes, 100mm VESA|
|Dimensions w/ Base (WxHxD)||22.0" x 15.2" x 8.6"|
|Additional Features||3.5mm stereo out, ControlSync, 3x USB 3.0|
|Limited Warranty||3 year|
|Accessories||DisplayPort Cable, ControlSync Cable, USB 3.0 Cable|
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MrSpadge - Monday, August 11, 2014 - linkI agree, I'd rather give 24" at 1440p or 1600p a try, maybe also 1600p at 27", than any 4k display. At this point I could probably avoid scaling and make good use of the added pixels while avoiding all the drawbacks of 4k displays.
know of fence - Friday, August 8, 2014 - link4K at 24" is not nearly enough that is needed for sharpness, what's needed for sharpness is un-discernible pixels seen from the minimum distance (~12") that an eye can still focus, famously branded "retina".
The TV/PC market is quadrupling pixels because it is the integer multiple (9x;4x) of 720p and 1080p, thus allowing artifact free scaling of both. Mr.Heinonen, the reviewer, should have scaled dpi to 200 %, not 150 %. But at least these monitors offer the option to have really small font/symbols, for some, IMHO crazy people. The goal is to have scaled font, video but native high res pictures.
MrSpadge - Monday, August 11, 2014 - link"what's needed for sharpness is un-discernible pixels seen from the minimum distance (~12") that an eye can still focus"
That's only needed for sharpness if you're watching your 24+" screen from 12". BTW: minimum focal distance is around 10 cm, give or take a few depending on the age of the person. That's just a few inches.
psonice - Thursday, August 7, 2014 - linkI think a lot of people miss the point with these monitors. It's not to get higher resolution / screen space, but to get a much clearer screen with the same space.
As such, I'm looking to get a 24" 4K screen specifically. I'll run it at 1920x1080, with 2x scaling. That will give me a standard 24" screen res (and 1920x1080 is big enough for my needs, and easy on my eyes) but it'll be *crisp*.
As a coder, I'm staring at a screen full of text all day, and having worked on a retina macbook pro for a while I can say that the screen on them makes text a lot more legible - it really is a huge improvement. So I want that, but bigger :)
(And yes, I'd like a 27" screen even more, but I'd want >4K resolution then..)
Stephen Barrett - Thursday, August 7, 2014 - linkthis! i do the same on my xps 15. 2x scaling works great
seapeople - Saturday, August 9, 2014 - linkI'm a little confused, I thought that if you run a 4K screen at 1920x1080, then it will basically pixel double and therefore be indistinguishable from a 1920x1080 screen running at native resolution.
So you would be completely wasting the 4x pixels on the screen, and could save a lot of money by just buying a 1920x1080 screen.
I wonder if you are confusing this 4K screen with Apple's implementation, whereby they render text at full resolution, thus giving you high resolution and crisp fonts, but then can double scale bitmaps so they are at least not blurry.
MrSpadge - Monday, August 11, 2014 - linkHe's probably referring to using 200% scaling instead of setting 1080p resolution.
MykeM - Thursday, August 7, 2014 - linkToo high of a DP? Not at 183ppi especially when this is the perfect display size/density if you're moving from a 24" display @ 1920*1200. With he exception of getting the more preferable 16:10 display, this is one fits the "Retina" terminology perfectly.
thewhat - Thursday, August 7, 2014 - linkI thought it was common sense by now that high PPI displays should be used with scaling...
Yes, it sucks that a lot of software still hasn't caught up, but hopefully hardware like this will help to push in that direction.
I wouldn't want to use a monitor bigger than 24-27", because that wouldn't work well for my FOV (related to viewing distance). So I'm glad there are sub-30" 4k monitors.
CSMR - Thursday, August 7, 2014 - linkThe difficulties of supporting widely divergent PPI displays well are very large.
Currently Windows has a single dpi setting per user, and that works well for most software.
However if screens differ widely in PPI, then a single dpi setting will not do, but supporting per-screen dpi is very difficult. Imagine having two screens, perhaps a laptop screen and external monitor, one with low PPI and one with ultra-high PPI. What happens when a window crosses both screens, or is moved from one to the other? You cannot expect apps to be able to deal with this, and only by removing the ability of apps to control pixels directly can this be dealt with. So both the OS and all apps need to be rewritten, and in a way that is not convenient for many apps.
Until then the solution is to have screens with similar dpis so that a single dpi can be set in Windows.
That is why I would avoid ultra-high dpi screens unless I know that there will be a single computer connecting to it and that computer will not need to connect to other screens. Moderately high dpi is best because their sharpness is already excellent and you can set say 125% or 150% in Windows and still connect to normal dpi screens without much problem.