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HP ZR30w Versus DoubleSight DS-309W, 30-Inch Monitors, Tested

Measurement And Calibration Methodology: How We Test

To measure and calibrate monitors, we use an i1Pro spectrophotometer and version 5.0.3 of SpectraCal’s CalMAN software.

For patterns, we employ an AccuPel DVG-5000 video signal generator. This approach removes video cards and drivers from the signal chain, allowing the display to receive true reference patterns. Connections are made via HDMI.

The AccuPel DVG-5000 is capable of generating all types of video signals at any resolution and refresh rate up to 1920x1080 at 60 Hz. It can also display motion patterns to evaluate a monitor's video processing capabilities, with 3D patterns available in every format. This allows us to measure color and grayscale performance, crosstalk, and ghosting in 3D content via the 3D glasses.

Calibration Notes

The HP ZR30w is a wide-gamut monitor designed to conform to the AdobeRGB 1998 spec. Therefore, we benchmarked it against that standard. You’ll see in the chromaticity charts that we plotted the results relative to the larger color gamut. Delta E values are also expressed using those same color points. There are no calibration controls available except for brightness. You can vary the monitor’s total light output with the plus and minus keys on the front bezel. There is no on-screen menu to let you know what the setting is. You have to adjust it by eye or with some type of meter, as we do.

Since this monitor is incompatible with the 1920x1080 signals from the Accupel generator, we utilized the CalPC Client from SpectraCAL as a substitute pattern source. All video driver settings were carefully checked to be sure the graphics card didn’t affect our readings.

The DoubleSight DS-309W is also a wide-gamut panel and has a full set of adjustments including high and low range RGB controls. We first saw this on the Asus PB278Q that we reviewed last month, and liked the fact that it allows for very precise adjustment of the monitor’s grayscale at all brightness levels.

After experimenting with the brightness and contrast controls, we found they work more like a television rather than a computer monitor. Normally, we increase the contrast to a point right before the highest-level details are clipped (blend into one another), then adjust light output with the brightness slider. The DoubleSight operates in the opposite way. Brightness affects the overall black level so we set this as low as possible while maintaining detail down to the minimum signal level. While this resulted in a fairly high black level measurement, setting the control any lower would clip information. The contrast has a narrow window of usable adjustment. Moving it more than a few clicks above the halfway point would crush top-end information and cause a visible color shift towards red. You can lower it as far as you want without harming accuracy. To dial in the max output at 200 cd/m2, we set it to a value of 33.

The sharpness control is set to a default value of 12, but because it appeared to have no effect on digital signals, we set it to zero.

Calibration Settings

DoubleSight DS-309W
Brightness50
Contrast33
Sharpness0
GainRed 55 / Green 47 / Blue 45
OffsetRed 54 / Green 48 / Blue 50

Obviously, there are no recommended settings for the HP ZR2740w. You can set the Brightness either by eye or by measuring the level with a meter.

  • vmem
    "And for those who demand a density above 100 pixels per inch and a tall 16:10 aspect ratio, they represent the top of the heap...for now"

    Isn't the ASUS PQ321 already out along with a few other 4K monitors? granted price is a whole other story
    Reply
  • Marcus52
    The lack of an OSD makes the ZR30w a much better gaming monitor, as the OSD causes higher lag. Personally I have no problem doing without one.

    You seriously can't see the pixels? I can see them on a 27" 2560x1440, which has smaller pixels. The .25mm range is adequate to me, but really I'd prefer something smaller than the .233mm on the 2560x1440.
    Reply
  • x2ruff4u
    You guys should wait to get any IPS screen. 60HZ is all they come in & tbh 60HZ in terms of technology is old. I would wait to get a 120HZ IPS monitor because it REALLY makes a difference. Sure you can OC your monitor, but most only go up to 90HZ and that can put a toll on it and eventually fry it. Your best bet is to get a 120hz-240hz TV and if your worried about MS don't be. Compared a low MS to a higher HZ there is very little difference in tech terms (read up about it) This year or beginning of next year WE should be getting some nice monitors you can be proud you spent your money. Hell ASUS already has a 4K monitor and I bet money on 4K monitors by mid-end next year.
    Reply
  • Onus
    Troll post(s) deleted.

    When considering something like this for games, don't forget the cost of the video card(s) needed to drive it. A HD7750 may be "sufferable" even up to 1920x1080, but I'm not sure even a HD7770 or GTX650Ti could play newer games on better than "low" settings on one of these.
    Reply
  • kungpaoshizi
    How the heck did you get those numbers via the input pcb for input lag?

    I have a ZR30W myself, and I would NEVER trade it unless what I'm upgrading to has more than a 2560x1600 resolution.

    I've played on all sorts of monitors, and resolution trumps all other specs, unless you're dealing with 30fps or something...
    I really wish I would have spent 1200$ on it long ago. Battlefield 3 and other highly graphical games are comparable to nothing else in the world.
    Reply
  • kungpaoshizi
    Oh btw, I run BF3 high/ultra settings with a GTX 570 oc'd, and it's peachy enough I don't tell my g/f I'm taking my other 570 out of the machine she's using to hook up SLI again...
    The 60hz is not "old tech", it's more than sufficient to run games smoothly if vertical sync is on (even still when it's off). 60 fps is fine, television (pre hd) was 28hz. Anything above 60fps you really don't notice too much.

    Oh, and for those looking for 4k tv's to use (I'm way ahead of ya) they only have 30hz refresh rates over the HDMI 1.2 port. We're going to have to wait for the tv's to add another port, wait for the upgrade to HDMI 2.0, or wait for some other solution.
    Reply
  • hero1
    I can safely say that I will sit tight and wait for the 4K monitors to hit the market at a reasonable price and grab one as long as they come in at 60Hz or 120Hz and not 30Hz.
    Reply
  • RedJaron
    It's a shame manufacturers treat 16:10 ratio as a rarity. A decent 1080p is often a little cheaper than a smaller 1680x1050 display and half as much as a slightly larger 1920x1200. Personally I can't stand a 16:9 for a computer. It's fine for TVs and watching media, but to work on I have to have that extra height.
    Reply
  • kenyee
    Are the panels actually 30-bit panels or are they 20-bit w/ dithering?
    Reply
  • hero1
    11058091 said:
    It's a shame manufacturers treat 16:10 ratio as a rarity. A decent 1080p is often a little cheaper than a smaller 1680x1050 display and half as much as a slightly larger 1920x1200. Personally I can't stand a 16:9 for a computer. It's fine for TVs and watching media, but to work on I have to have that extra height.

    We aren't going to see many 16:10 in the future. the 4K stuff is going to be 16:9 unless someone makes the move to stick with 16:10. However, the difference when it comes to 16:9 with a 2560x1440 and 16:10 2560x1600 is very minimal unless you really really need that extra height!
    Reply