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Out Of Box LCD Performance: Color Accuracy And Gamut

Touchscreen Computing: Gateway ZX4931 And HP TouchSmart 310
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We are using a Spectracal-certified X-Rite i1Pro, along with CalMan, to report color gamut and color accuracy. For those unfamiliar with the terms, color gamut refers to the range of colors that a display can produce, and color accuracy refers to the display's ability to output the color requested by the GPU. Typically, professionals represent these values by showing a gamut and a delta E value, which is a mathematical representation of how far the display's output is from the original source. The higher the delta E value, the more inaccurate the color representation. An uncalibrated delta E is largely a worthless number. Delta E is dependent on the black and white luminance levels, contrast ratio, color temperature, and target gamma.

Suppose there are two displays: one has an uncalibrated delta E value of 3.0, and the other, 2.1. It is hard to make a comparison without first calibrating the color space. Monitor calibration is to display quality what quality settings are to game benchmarks. By calibrating displays, we are able to normalize the settings and see how one display compares to another.

For this reason, we’re going to provide information in the form of a color gamut map, along with a gamut luminance chart. This will give a better picture of how a display performs both fresh out of the box and once it's calibrated.

Color Gamut and Accuracy

CalMan uses specific targets that are displayed as squares in the gamut xy map. The dots are the actual measured values. Gamut luminance expresses how bright the primary and secondary colors are in relation to the source color requested by the GPU (gray bars are target values). 

Gamut CIE XY Map

Gateway One ZX4931Gateway One ZX4931HP TouchSmart 310HP TouchSmart 310

Gamut Luminance

Gateway One ZX4931Gateway One ZX4931

HP TouchSmart 310HP TouchSmart 310

HP's TouchSmart 310 generates more accurate colors than the ZX4931, but this is mainly because it has a default white point closer to 6500 K. It is still a little weak in magenta production, and it exceeds the reference luminance near the cyan-green border. In comparison, Gateway's ZX4931 has the opposite problem because its 6000 K white point only makes colors worse. It produces higher magenta and red luminance, but it shows a significant amount of weakness near the cyan-green border. As a result, the white point is skewed towards yellow, while blue tones remain largely unaffected.

Neither touchscreen uses a wide-gamut LCD panel, but the gamuts are still substantially better than what you will get out of a budget LCD monitor. Gateway doesn't provide a gamut spec, but our test results confirm HP's 72% gamut claim.

Keep in mind that both of these all-in-one PCs use lower-end integrated GPUs, which means that neither configuration is a great choice for gaming.

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  • 1 Hide
    compton , May 12, 2011 4:31 AM
    This article was worth what I can only assume was a torturous trip to Best Buy. But curiously, I'm not thinking about all in ones, but rather touch screens. Dell makes an eIPS panel with a touch screen for not a ridiculous sum of money. I've been considering it for a foray into touch screen computing on my desktop where I have the juice to do it right.

    Toms strikes another blow against boring reviews. Good job.
  • 0 Hide
    flong , May 12, 2011 6:00 AM
    Interesting subject - could this really be the computer's future? I don't think that the keypad will be replaced until voice control is more mature.
  • -1 Hide
    Anonymous , May 12, 2011 6:39 AM
    Voice control is not the future; it's been around forever. Until computers can think, you can't talk to them.

    In reference to the article, while desktop DIY rigs are definitely orientated to serve a central purpose, these all-in-ones are just as purpose built to serve an environment. (eg kitchen, living area)

    Make touchscreens more seamless. By seamless I mean cheap. Where is the touch screen film I can just roll over whatever I want? How about a coffee table that recognizes my devices and my Heineken?
  • 2 Hide
    flong , May 12, 2011 7:49 AM
    Voice control has been around forever - duh. Brilliant observation. And while we are making observations, there is at least one computer you can talk to, IBM's Watson, which won jeopardy. Quality voice control is just coming into being.

    What I meant was that until we have better voice control / input, a keypad will be necessary because typing on a vertical touchscreen, which is obviously awkward, would not suffice to do say a high school homework assignment.

    Even with better voice input there may be some physical interface like a mouse. Right now cutting edge voice control for consumers is what we find with Ford's "Sync." But that would not work for a work station.

    Touch screens like the Ipad have their strengths but nobody thinks they will replace computers with keyboards (nettops excepted).

    However, if we have a "Watson" interface where we can provide input via voice control: that is the future of computers. With Watson you could virtually ask it to do any function, search any website or dictate a spreadsheet to it. Per your example, you could ask Watson to make your coffee and then put the morning newspaper on the built-in LCD coffee table viewer, turn the AC down to 75 degrees and find out what traffic is for the morning commute and it would be cable of doing all these things with voice input only. Bill Gates's home has many of these functions without an AI interface.
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , May 12, 2011 11:53 AM
    I hate touch screens, bringing it to the PC just annoys me, I dont want to touch my screen, do not see a use for it...

    The next step forward is voice control that works!
  • 1 Hide
    cknobman , May 12, 2011 1:52 PM
    This article is one of the worst I have ever seen on Toms Hardware. It seems rushed, is missing tons of relevant information, and basically skims over the most important features of a touchscreen computer.
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , May 12, 2011 1:55 PM
    On the HP display ... is it 20" and ??? as on the lead page or is it 23" and 1600x900 as on the Display Spec page ? Because HP says it's 20" and a 1080P display for the 310 series.
  • 2 Hide
    molo9000 , May 12, 2011 3:45 PM
    Touch screens on desktops are an ergonomical nightmare

    Just point your finger at your display for a while. Your arm will start hurting after about 2 minutes.
  • 0 Hide
    acku , May 12, 2011 3:52 PM
    MacTheKnifeOn the HP display ... is it 20" and ??? as on the lead page or is it 23" and 1600x900 as on the Display Spec page ? Because HP says it's 20" and a 1080P display for the 310 series.


    Fixed!
  • 0 Hide
    acku , May 12, 2011 3:56 PM
    cknobmanThis article is one of the worst I have ever seen on Toms Hardware. It seems rushed, is missing tons of relevant information, and basically skims over the most important features of a touchscreen computer.


    If you want to see something specifically please let us know. If there is one thing missing, it's more discussion on software/touchscreen demos, but we provided these as videos. And, as this is Tom's Hardware not Tom's software, we wanted to focus on the hardware.
  • 0 Hide
    acku , May 12, 2011 3:58 PM
    Quote:
    Interesting subject - could this really be the computer's future? I don't think that the keypad will be replaced until voice control is more mature.


    A cooler setup would be something ala Minority Report. Think of Kinect on steriods...
  • 0 Hide
    flong , May 12, 2011 4:06 PM
    Tom's Hardware - don't listen to cknobman, this was a fascinating article and you guys do a great job with your reviews. I am not that interested in touch-screen computers and I enjoyed reading it.
  • 0 Hide
    acku , May 12, 2011 5:04 PM
    Quote:
    Tom's Hardware - don't listen to cknobman, this was a fascinating article and you guys do a great job with your reviews. I am not that interested in touch-screen computers and I enjoyed reading it.


    Thanks for the kudos!
  • 1 Hide
    stuart72 , May 12, 2011 6:54 PM
    molo9000Touch screens on desktops are an ergonomical nightmareJust point your finger at your display for a while. Your arm will start hurting after about 2 minutes.


    Yup, not to mention that with a 24" monitor I sit 4 foot from the screen and only have 2 foot 6 inch long arms...
  • 0 Hide
    virtualban , May 13, 2011 10:20 AM
    ackuA cooler setup would be something ala Minority Report. Think of Kinect on steriods...

    That is right. That is the future. Anything else will not make it to the times when brain-computer-interface will change forever the way we interact in full productive ways with the machines.
    BCI + projected into the retina displays will be the step right before nanomachines will be able to hijack our I/O nervous system.

    Exciting future is ahead. Keep healthy people or you risk not seeing it.
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , June 21, 2011 5:41 PM
    I would like if I could get it with out the 'touch' screen.
  • 0 Hide
    Anonymous , July 4, 2011 5:38 PM
    Why not cite an overall preference with details why?

    My friend just bought a Gateway ZX4931 and is thrilled with it. It seems that the angle of the HP all-in-one is straight up. Wouldn't that be harder to look at over extended periods of time? Another thing is that the Gateway unit has a line of light under the display. I thought this would be an annoyance but it actually adds. There is no mention in your article. BTW, the Gateway display is fabulous. Is the HP equal? The Gateway has five USB slots in the back (as well as the two on the right side). This adds functionality, but it seems a hassle to go to the back of what is the unit's bulkiest part. No mention....

    I never heard of Tom's Hardware, but I share the view that at least this comparison piece was superficial and weak. A real nuts and bolts value comparison between the two would have been "outtasight!" I don't see how your article as it is would aid a shopper interested in models made the ways these two are, especially a shopper who is not technically up on things. I didn't see the HP unit in action, so to speak, but I can say that the Gateway ZX4931 makes what I've been using seem like from another era!