NEC MultiSync PA241W review

10 Jan 2011

Expensive and impressively flexible, but only the most demanding professionals need apply

NEC MultiSync PA241W
Price when reviewed 
770
Buy it now for 
4

NEC’s MultiSync range starts in the realms of the affordable and quickly soars to prices that would make even the richest of enthusiasts wince. The MultiSync PA241W is no exception: at £642 it's one of the most expensive 24in monitors on the market.

Crane the 10.6kg PA241W out of its box, and it’s clear this isn’t your usual consumer-level monitor. The stout, thick-set build screams quality, while the chunky stand rises, twists, swivels and rotates into portrait mode.

Twin DVI sockets and a D-SUB socket are accompanied by a DisplayPort input, which is crucial for making the most of the high-end 10-bit P-IPS panel. There’s also a Picture-in-Picture mode for monitoring multiple video inputs, and a three-port USB hub.

NEC MultiSync PA241W

The 1,920 x 1,200 resolution P-IPS panel is backed up by a wide-gamut CCFL backlight, which allows the PA241W to stretch beyond sRGB to cover 98% of the Adobe RGB colour space. This means it can display a wider range of colours in colour-managed applications such as Photoshop.

Delta E

Delta E is a figure that represents the difference between the desired colour and the colour displayed onscreen. Below 1.0 is indistinguishable to the human eye; an experienced viewer may notice differences around 3-4. We measure Delta E with a colorimeter before and after calibration.

Technically, the NEC is pretty solid. Greyscale transitions are smooth and free from banding, viewing angles are wide, and brightness is even across the panel. We were a little disappointed to see mild backlight bleed in one corner and along the left-hand edge, though.

At its default settings, the PA241W measures up supremely well. Our X-Rite colorimeter showed the colour gamut spreading most of the way across the Adobe RGB colour space, while reporting an average Delta E of 1.3 and a maximum Delta E of 3.5. We were less impressed by the accuracy of the Adobe RGB and sRGB presets, however.

A good sRGB preset is crucial for avoiding oversaturated images in non-colour-managed apps, but the NEC reported an average Delta E of 5.2 and a maximum of 13.5.

Consumers will baulk at the price tag, but professionals for whom colour accuracy is critical will find some appeal. Given the wealth of image-tweaking options in the on-screen menus and the fact that most users at this price will be using hardware calibration, the wayward presets don’t rule it completely out of contention.

Details

Price ex VAT £642
Price inc VAT £770
Overall rating 4
Image quality 5
Features & Design 5
Value for Money 2

Main specifications

Screen size 24.0in
Aspect ratio 16:10
Resolution 1920 x 1200
Screen brightness 360cd/m2
Pixel response time 8ms
Contrast ratio 1,000:1
Horizontal viewing angle 178 degrees
Vertical viewing angle 178 degrees
Speaker type none
Speaker power ouput N/A
TV tuner no
TV tuner type N/A

Connections

DVI inputs 2
VGA inputs 1
HDMI inputs 0
DisplayPort inputs 1
Scart inputs 0
HDCP support yes
Upstream USB ports 1
USB ports (downstream) 3
3.5mm audio input jacks 0
Headphone output no
Other audio connectors none

Accessories supplied

Other cables supplied VGA
Internal power supply yes

Power consumption

Peak power consumption 59W
Idle power consumption 1W

Image adjustments

Brightness control? yes
Contrast control? yes
Colour temperature settings 3000k-15,000k in 100k increments, Native
Extra adjustments Black level, Adobe RGBand sRGB presets, hue, offset, saturation, gamma, RGBco-ordinates, uniformity, sharpness, overdrive, metamerism, Picture-in-Picture

Ergonomics

Forward tilt angle 5 degrees
Backward tilt angle 30 degrees
Swivel angle 90 degrees
Height adjustment 150mm
Pivot (portrait) mode? yes
Bezel width 18mm

Dimensions

Dimensions 557 x 228 x 378mm (WDH)
Weight 10.600kg

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