Results: Brightness And Contrast
To read about our monitor tests in-depth, please check out Display Testing Explained: How We Test Monitors and TVs. Brightness and Contrast testing is covered on page two.
Uncalibrated – Maximum Backlight Level
Today’s group operates at 144Hz all of the time. We temporarily left the Overlord 120Hz IPS screen out, but it will return in future gaming monitor reviews. To make fair comparisons to the XL2430T, we have the G2460PQU, G2460PG and G2770PQU from AOC; BenQ’s XL2720Z and the ROG Swift PG278Q from Asus. The G2460PG and ROG Swift screens include G-Sync functionality.
BenQ rates the XL2430T at 350cd/m2, so that claim is met as far as our sample is concerned. Of greater note is that turning on the Blur Reduction only costs 51 percent of your light output. This is on setting 10 of 25, which means you can opt for an even smaller reduction if you want. It’s the best-implemented backlight strobe we’ve seen yet.
With Blur Reduction off, the black level is average for a panel of this type. When it’s on, you get deep blacks. Just be careful because if you drop output too much, it can become difficult to see the smallest shadow details.
Without Blur Reduction, maximum on/off contrast comes close to our preferred 1000:1 level. Turning it on affects contrast by only six percent, so in a darkened room you can reap the benefit without too great a penalty.
Uncalibrated – Minimum Backlight Level
The XL2430T has a very wide-ranging backlight, as demonstrated by its low minimum white level. If you want to set it closer to 50cd/m2 as we do, up the brightness slider to 6. Obviously you won’t be using Blur Reduction at this point. A result of 14.8662cd/m2 makes for a pretty dim image.
Of course, it’s fun to see just how low the black level can go. With Blur Reduction turned on, we recorded a number more often seen from an HDTV rather than a computer monitor. The unaltered value is pretty good too.
On/off contrast stays fairly consistent throughout the backlight’s range. You’ll take a small hit when using Blur Reduction, but it’s pretty hard to see. We feel the XL2430T delivers above-average contrast performance.
After Calibration to 200cd/m2
After calibration, we see the same 51-percent drop in light output when Blur Reduction is engaged. If you want to use it, just crank up the backlight a little; there’s plenty of headroom. Too bad there aren’t independent settings like we saw on the AOC G2460PG.
The calibrated black level runs about mid-pack, comparing favorably to the majority of computer monitors we’ve tested. And the blacks are still quite deep when you turn on blur reduction.
The best part about this result is that there is almost no contrast reduction when calibrating the XL2430T, since we barely had to change the RGB sliders. Moreover, the Contrast control allows for some upward adjustment before clipping occurs. That’s a plus compared to most displays, which have no extra room there.
ANSI Contrast Ratio
This is a high-quality panel with no visible light bleed in our ANSI checkerboard pattern. The black squares are nice and dark, and the white squares are plenty bright (as they should be). You’ll see later that this display posts solid uniformity numbers, really showing how good a well-engineered TN panel can look.
TN and IPS both have there own advantage. TN for low response time and relatively high refresh rate, whereas IPS has better color reproduction and viewing angle. However, IPS panel generally has long response time, which might cause ghosting when gaming.
For XL2430T TN panel which might seem bad color reproduction, the color is actually fine and it can be adjusted by "Color Vibrance" mode. It's a great choice for you.
Seriously, after comparing the VX2770 and swift (which is a classic IPS to TN), I wasn't even sure what IPS was all about, the IPS had much worse BLB and didn't look that much greater (granted, it was probably a bad IPS panel).