Grayscale, Gamma & Color
Our grayscale and gamma tests are described in detail here.
We started our tests in the fixed Adobe RGB mode. There are no adjustments available here and output is locked at 170cd/m2. The chart indicates a slightly warm rendering with visible errors beginning at the 50-percent point. We don’t consider this a huge issue but a premium factory-calibrated monitor should measure a little better out of the box. The sRGB mode posts a nearly-identical result. The red tint increases hand-in-hand with brightness making the whitest highlights a little too warm in hue. Calibrating the Darkroom mode is the best way to achieve perfect grayscale tracking. There are no visible errors here and all values are below 1dE. This is excellent performance.
The top four screens are what we expect from professional-grade gear. Asus has come up a little short in this particular test. Even so, we’d still pick the sRGB and Adobe RGB modes as our go-to presets because color and gamma benchmarks reveal far better results. Darkroom mode can be calibrated to a high grayscale standard but the caveat is an over-saturated red primary. We’ll show you that chart below. Since sRGB and Adobe RGB are fixed, we couldn’t improve those numbers. And Asus’ included software could not be tested with our equipment.
Regardless of which image preset you choose, gamma tracks perfectly at 2.2 and every other possible setting. With only a .08 range of values, there is nothing to complain about here. Only the SW2700PT scores higher.
A .04-percent deviation means the PA329Q scores a 2.21 average value at an indicated 2.2 setting. It’s nice to know the other presets are equally accurate. This aspect of the Asus’ performance is without fault.
Color Gamut And Luminance
For details on our color gamut testing and volume calculations, please click here.
Despite less-than-stellar grayscale numbers, the PA329Q nails the targets for color gamut and luminance. While 100% blue is a tad under, its increased luminance makes up for that deficiency. The resulting errors are super low. The sRGB mode measures equally well, and like the Adobe RGB preset, meets the specs on the included calibration data sheet. Aside from a slightly warm white point, both modes are very accurate and suitable for color-critical applications.
Though gamma and grayscale are perfect in the Darkroom mode, it suffers from the PA329Q’s native red primary which is quite over-saturated. If this is not an issue in your particular application, Darkroom makes for a workable solution. We tried using the 6-axis saturation adjustment to fix it but only succeeded in reducing red’s luminance even further.
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Despite a few flaws, overall color accuracy is only a bit behind the other pro screens here. The red errors in Darkroom mode are visible but all other colors look perfect to the eye. And there are no problems in Adobe RGB or sRGB.
A slightly under-saturated blue primary reduces gamut volume just a bit for both sRGB and Adobe RGB. This is nothing that a custom ICC profile can’t compensate for. It seems only the 5K screens can approach 100% for both standards.