Philips Evnia 49M2C8900 240 Hz QD-OLED gaming monitor review: Tremendous color and performance

49-inch curved 32:9 QD-OLED with DQHD resolution, 240 Hz, Adaptive-Sync, HDR400, and wide gamut color.

Philips Evnia 49M2C8900
Editor's Choice
(Image: © Tom's Hardware)

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Our HDR benchmarking uses Portrait Displays’ Calman software. To learn about our HDR testing, see our breakdown of how we test PC monitors.

For the latest HDR games and video, there’s no better tech than OLED. The 49M2C8900 embodies that like every other example I’ve reviewed. HDR10 signals enable five additional modes, three of which have adjustable brightness, contrast and color.

HDR Brightness and Contrast

The HDR Game mode is the default and best choice. If you find it too bright (unlikely), it has brightness, contrast and color controls. For top performance, max the brightness slider and leave the remaining options alone. The 49M2C8900 isn’t the brightest HDR monitor out there, but it is bright enough to deliver a killer image with deep blacks and highlights that pop. With its huge color gamut, it will look more vivid than OLEDs without Quantum Dots. As always, black levels and therefore, contrast cannot be determined with any currently available instruments.

Grayscale, EOTF and Color

The 49M2C8900 has perfect HDR grayscale tracking with all errors below 2dE. That is better than most HDR monitors can boast. But there is an issue with luminance tracking, as you can see. Basically, no signal level below 20% is visible. This behavior is repeated in all the HDR modes, and there is no option to compensate. Once you hit 20%, it tracks close to reference and transitions to tone-mapping at 60%, which is correct for the measured levels. To fix the issue of crushed shadow detail, you’ll need to use in-game HDR controls. Most titles have something available in their menus to fix this. If you’re thinking you can use the Shadow Boost feature in the Game Mode menu, it is unfortunately grayed out.

HDR color tracks well with general over-saturation that’s comparable to other HDR gaming monitors. Points are linear, so there is no loss of detail. The 49M2C8900 is extremely colorful and uses its large gamut to the fullest. It covers a good deal of Rec.2020 as well so content mastered to that gamut will have that extra verve.

Test Takeaway: The 49M2C8900 renders a superb HDR image in every respect except for shadow detail, which is crushed below 20% brightness. If you can compensate either in-game or by using controls in your source component, this issue can be mitigated. There is plenty of color and brightness and accuracy is high. If Philips took care of this with a firmware update, I’d be happier.

MORE: Best Gaming Monitors

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MORE: How to Choose the Best HDR Monitor

Christian Eberle
Contributing Editor

Christian Eberle is a Contributing Editor for Tom's Hardware US. He's a veteran reviewer of A/V equipment, specializing in monitors. Christian began his obsession with tech when he built his first PC in 1991, a 286 running DOS 3.0 at a blazing 12MHz. In 2006, he undertook training from the Imaging Science Foundation in video calibration and testing and thus started a passion for precise imaging that persists to this day. He is also a professional musician with a degree from the New England Conservatory as a classical bassoonist which he used to good effect as a performer with the West Point Army Band from 1987 to 2013. He enjoys watching movies and listening to high-end audio in his custom-built home theater and can be seen riding trails near his home on a race-ready ICE VTX recumbent trike. Christian enjoys the endless summer in Florida where he lives with his wife and Chihuahua and plays with orchestras around the state.

  • Neilbob
    When your monitor is wider than your desk, you've gone too wide...

    Okay, I'm just being facetious here. I am so very much not the target audience for a product like this: I get pains in my neck if I turn my head too much these days.
    Reply
  • Hdwr_Junkie
    What's up with all the insane Monitor aspect ratios??
    32:9 is INSANE!
    You can't put up a single page of a document without having to scroll vertically for half of it!
    That makes monitors like this USELESS for anything but panoramic gaming.
    Start making monitors with a vertical size that compliments the wideness and you'll have a resurgence in sales from people other than hardcore gamers!
    16:10 was a decent aspect ratio. Productive.
    Reply
  • bruiners79
    Hdwr_Junkie said:
    What's up with all the insane Monitor aspect ratios??
    32:9 is INSANE!
    You can't put up a single page of a document without having to scroll vertically for half of it!
    That makes monitors like this USELESS for anything but panoramic gaming.
    Start making monitors with a vertical size that compliments the wideness and you'll have a resurgence in sales from people other than hardcore gamers!
    16:10 was a decent aspect ratio. Productive.
    You've clearly never worked on a ultra wide monitor with a decent resolution.

    I thought they were a gimmick for gaming, and then I brought my first one (49in G9), and wow... greatest productivity gainer I've ever had. In my field of view I would have 4-5 windows open (one for coding, two web browsers testing my code; one for desktop, the other mobile), one for general web browsing (news) and the last space a film or word document / spreadsheet.

    Its so good that when the 57in came out i jumped at it, as the dual 4k does improve vertical scrolling over the 49in.

    Try one, you'll never look back.
    Reply
  • helper800
    Does anyone know the exact subpixel layout for this monitor? On the Philips website it just says: RGB Q-Stripe. Does this use the gen3 QD-OLED pixels or the gen2?
    Reply