Color Quality

Straight out of the box, the color accuracy of the HP leaves a disappointing taste. The average dE is close to 9, and the grayscale is well up there, almost entirely in the double digits. Due to the lack of an OSD or other controls, there isn’t any other color mode you can select, such as sRGB or 6500K, to try to improve these results without calibration. If you purchase the ZR2740w and cannot calibrate it, this is the performance you can expect with no way to improve upon it at all.

Color Tracking -  XR Pro, Xrite i1D2 and XR i1DPro

Of course, since many people purchasing this display will be calibrating it, we want to see how well it performs after a calibration. Using ColorEyes Display Pro on a MacBook Air, I set the targets to my usual preferences: 200 nits of light output, a D65 white point, gamma of 2.2, and minimum black level. The calibration was done with an i1Pro spectrometer that is NIST certified to have a maximum error of 1.0 dE and an average error of 0.4. Using these settings, we get a much better result out of the HP.

Color Tracking -  XR Pro, Xrite i1D2 and XR i1DPro

Here we can see that our dE has dropped down to an average of 1.76 which is pretty good. The errors, as usual, are in shades of blue at the edge of the sRGB colorspace, and that grayscale that was horrible is now down to an error of under 1 for almost the entire range. Again I wanted to look at the median color error and see how much this average error is being skewed by the blue results.

Color Tracking -  XR Pro, Xrite i1D2 and XR i1DPro

Our median color error is a dE of 1.2, which is quite good. There are a lot of panels that do worse than that, and not many that can do much better at all. The only way to really get an error much better than this is to find a panel that uses the full AdobeRGB colorspace, so those shades of blue will be able to be rendered correctly. As a high resolution 27” monitor is likely to be targeted towards professionals, including those doing print work, the 100 nits results were even more important this time than usual.

Color Tracking -  XR Pro, Xrite i1D2 and XR i1DPro

The dE results are very similar to those with 200 nits of light output, down to the grayscale having similar errors across the spectrum. The worst grayscale patch is the dark gray, which is the hardest for the i1Pro to read accurately, but until I have a better calibration program that allows for meter profiling, it’s the best result I’ll be able to get for you. Overall the calibrated results for the HP are good, but with no OSD at all the only way to get even close to these is with a calibration package, since you can’t even copy settings from another display and hope they look OK on your monitor. You could always try copying a color profile from someone else with the same monitor, but even then you're likely to get significant errors as there's plenty of variance between otherwise "identical" panels.

Design, OSD, and Viewing Angles Color Uniformity and Color Gamut
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  • Solidstate89 - Sunday, March 18, 2012 - link

    Thanks for the reply. Hopefully you guys can obtain one soon. I'm looking for a nice 27" monitor and the U2711, this HP monitor and the Samsung one are high up my list.
  • Oxford Guy - Wednesday, March 21, 2012 - link

    The early PLS monitors were not well-rated. Among other problems, they had poor contrast. I don't know if the tech has improved, but I think it has because as I recall, the most recently reviewed model on -- which may be the one you're talking about -- was well-rated.
  • Oxford Guy - Wednesday, March 21, 2012 - link

    Check the German version of the site with Google translate if you're a non-speaker. You may find the monitor you're looking for.
  • The Ugly Truth - Saturday, March 17, 2012 - link

    Freedom of expression and freedom to have an online life outside of AT forums reach is all we ask.
  • Oxford Guy - Wednesday, March 21, 2012 - link

    "Freedom of expression..."

    There is no free speech, anywhere. No matter where you are, as long as there are a group of people -- government happens. When government happens, restrictions are placed on behavior. You won't find freedom of expression in the forums here or anywhere else. You'll only find degrees of it, and how well your agenda matches the agenda of the mods will determine how free you feel you are.

    "and freedom to have an online life outside of AT forums"

    This makes no sense, unless the forum implements some sort of slavery.
  • Oxford Guy - Saturday, March 17, 2012 - link

    Use Google translate:

    Every monitor that comes through Anandtech should specify whether it uses PWM or constant control.
  • cheinonen - Saturday, March 17, 2012 - link

    There was a good article at this at TFT Central as well (I try to read as much as I can) and adding a test for it was something I was hoping to get going soon.
  • Oxford Guy - Wednesday, March 21, 2012 - link

    I read that, but I'd say the article is better.
  • SantaAna12 - Sunday, March 18, 2012 - link

    Earlier this year you reviewed the Asus VA278Q. No mention of this? I ask because you presented it as an affordable quality 27 inch monitor with the same resolution to this one. As to the price of the Dell 27 the person saying "people are paying 1000.00$ for this monitor" must have money to burn.
  • cheinonen - Monday, March 19, 2012 - link

    The ASUS was posted as being shown at CES, but hasn't started shipping or been reviewed by anyone yet. Once it starts to ship we will try to take a look at it.

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