The AW5520QF features four HDR modes. The sole image controls they have is contrast, which only serves to adjust the highlight detail clip point. It’s best left at its default setting of 75%. We measured all four modes and determined that Reference was the most accurate. It’s aptly named because the errors are quite small.
HDR Brightness and Contrast
Contrast is the most important factor when considering any HDR display. While LCD monitors with FALD backlights do an excellent job at rendering deep blacks and bright whites, they can’t come close to the image depth of an OLED. LCDs have a brightness advantage, though. All the LCD panels here top 1,000 nits brightness with HDR, with the PA32UCX nearing the 1,500-nit mark. That adds depth and dimension and makes an image that holds up better under ambient lighting. But the AW5520QF, when viewed in a dark environment, is on a completely different level. To achieve the 406-nit peak we measured, we used a 5% window pattern. Again, we were unable to measure the black level, so HDR contrast is theoretically infinite.
Grayscale, EOTF and Color
The AW5520QF’s HDR grayscale accuracy is superb with only a few errors over 2d that are invisible to the naked eye. The tone-map clip point is just over 50%, and our test shows that luminance tracks almost exactly to standard. It doesn’t get much better than this.
The monitor has nearly full coverage of the DCI-P3 gamut, which is borne out by our HDR color test. Inner points are a little over-saturated, but tracking is linear to the triangle’s perimeter. There are no significant hue errors. The AW5520QF can’t quite get to the full Rec.2020 gamut, but it tries by over-saturating at every target point. Only the Asus PA32UCX comes anywhere close to rendering this enormous gamut.
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