For many users, any monitor with a decent image will suffice for workaday tasks. Things like fast refresh rates, high contrast and super-accurate color are less important than reliability and ease-of-use when you've simply got lots of work to get through. But having those things can make the day go by more quickly and smoothly. Better color and contrast quality results in a picture that’s easier on the eyes and won’t leave you feeling fatigued after staring at that screen for hours at a time.
The NEC EA275WMi is ideally suited as a general use tool. It offers QHD (2560x1440) resolution in a bright 27" AH-IPS panel. It includes NEC’s comprehensive OSD with many options designed for the enterprise. It also has a very cool feature called ControlSync, which lets you daisy-chain up to six monitors and share settings between them. Let’s take a look.
The EA275WMi is priced a bit higher than other 27" IPS/QHD screens. But for that extra cost you get NEC’s much vaunted build quality, a superb image, and enterprise features that will please even the grouchiest IT departments.
ControlSync is something we’ve seen on previous NEC displays but never had the chance to test. For this review, we received two identical screens so we could experience this unique function for ourselves. We also got SpectraView II calibration software along with a color meter. We’ve used it before, and in its current iteration it still stands out as one of the most intuitive packages available from any manufacturer.
Packaging, Physical Layout & Accessories
The EA275WMi is packed quite securely in a nearly indestructible carton made from heavy double-corrugate cardboard. The monitor is fully assembled already: just lift it out, plug it in, and go. The stand can be removed if you want to use your own mounting system.
The power supply is internal, so multiple power cords are included to cover different regions. You also get DisplayPort, USB 3.0, and ControlSync cables. Documentation consists of a quick-start guide and download instructions for NaviSet Administrator, which is a tool that can control NEC monitors over larger networks. The calibration kit ships separately and includes SpectraView II software on a USB thumb drive and a color meter.
Even though NEC monitors are simply styled, there is no mistaking them even at a distance. Their beefy industrial look is unique and instantly recognizable. The EA275WMi both blends into its environment and stands out because of its monolithic appearance.
Despite its chunky dimensions, the front bezel is just 19mm wide. The anti-glare layer provides excellent light control while maintaining a tight air gap for maximum clarity. Detail is super fine, and you won’t see any pixilation unless you sit extremely close to the screen.
OSD controls consist of superbly-engineered, touch-sensitive keys that respond to light pressure. The silk-screened labels are quite small, but you only need to know which ones are for power and menu. The rest are indicated by the on-screen icons that clearly tell you their functions.
The stand is extremely solid and offers full adjustment of the panel’s position. You get a 5.1" height range along with nearly 360° swivel, 25° tilt, and a portrait mode. If you want to use your own mount, there are two sets of 100mm VESA-compatible threaded holes around back.
Ventilation is generous, and you can see through the grills that the internal components are heavily shielded. There’s no chance of EM interference from this display. Two small speakers fire out the top of the power bulge. Sound is polite at best with most of its emphasis in the middle to high-range frequencies.
Inputs include one each of DisplayPort 1.2, HDMI 1.4, and DVI, which can accommodate digital or analog signals. You also get a DP output for MST operation. The USB hub accepts version 3.0 upstream and offers two downstream ports on the bottom. The side port is version 2.0 compatible. Analog audio is supported by a 3.5mm input and a side-mounted headphone output. The gray and black connectors are for ControlSync.
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