LG 29EA93—Brightness and Contrast

The LG 29EA93 uses a totally different panel and backlighting setup than any display that I’ve tested, so for once I am coming into a review without any real idea of how something will perform. With the LED backlight set to maximum with a pure white screen, the peak brightness measures at 252 nits. This is a bit lower than I expect but fine for those people without direct sunlight on the screen. With the backlight at minimum that light output level drops down to 61 nits, which provides plenty of range for users that have light controlled environments and want a dimmer display.

White Level— XR Pro, Xrite i1D2 and XR i1DPro

Black levels on the LG are pretty good in comparison to other IPS panels. The black level with the backlight at minimum is a nice 0.237 nits, and that drops all the way down to 0.057 nits with the backlight at minimum. When measured against the peak light levels and against other IPS displays, these are good black levels to see.

Black Level—XR Pro, Xrite i1D2 and XR i1DPro

These numbers combine to give us a contrast ratio over 1060 for both minimum and maximum backlight levels. This puts the LG up there with the best IPS contrast ratios we have measured on any size display. The best VA displays still perform better, but IPS has managed to really improve upon contrast ratios the past few years.

Contrast Ratio— XR Pro, Xrite i1D2 and XR i1DPro

Overall the peak brightness left a bit to be desired on the LG 29EA93, but the black levels and contrast ratio help to make up for that. They still won’t make it a good choice for someone that has to deal with direct sunlight on the display, but for users without that you can get plenty of brightness and a good contrast ratio from it.

LG 29EA93 - 21:9 in Daily Use LG 29EA93 - Color Quality and Color Gamut
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  • Reflex - Tuesday, December 11, 2012 - link

    Seriously, that was one of the worst movies I've seen in a while. Ryan Gosling can't act his way out of a wet paper bag, and the plot was nonsensically ridiculous with some truly idiotic characters.

    I like artsy movies but I did not get the acclaim that movie recieved.
    Reply
  • TegiriNenashi - Tuesday, December 11, 2012 - link

    Why blackbars on 16:9 screen? Just crop that ridiculous 21:9 to 16:9, which is more than enough wide already. Oh, you are afraid to loose some very important action happening on the sides?

    It is Hollywood, not display industry, that is desperately behind the times clinging to that ancient 2.37,2.40,2:35 (they can't even make their mind themselves for the exact figure). Lately, there is some sanity coming back, and many blockbuster movies shot in 16:9 OAR. They have to: to achieve maximum 3D effect it's better to fill in the entire field of view, and this is not possible with embrasure view. To summarize, we'll see slow and agonizing death of 21:9 in next 5 years.
    Reply
  • cheinonen - Tuesday, December 11, 2012 - link

    The ratio for CinemaScope has changed over time, for a number of reasons, but it's not a random number:

    2.55:1 - Original size with magnetic stripe for audio
    2.35:1 - Switch to analog optical audio track that takes up space on film
    2.39:1 - Switch in 1970 to smaller gate size to hid splices in the negative

    2.40:1 is what many 2.39:1 films are cropped to for home video releases (a difference of 3 pixels vertically). 2.37:1 is what 21:9 monitors wind up being as they use common sizes from other displays (1080 pixels high, 2560 wide like 27" and 30" displays).

    Cinemascope ratios aren't close to dying, and will be around just as much in 10 years as they are now as they still offer something that most people can't get at home.
    Reply
  • TegiriNenashi - Tuesday, December 11, 2012 - link

    I must give LG a credit: take some defective 30" 2560x1600 panels, cut top and bottom and resell it as "new" "innovative" product...

    The industry moves in bizarre ways. Take that crippled 21:9 58" Vizio. It is passive 3D, so it's half of the resolution vertically. That's right, they have 540 vertical pixels, and 5(!) times more pixels horizontally.
    Reply
  • ReaM - Monday, January 21, 2013 - link

    No movie will ever be shot in 16:9, because 16:9 is aesthetically bad. It looks bad. It does not have that "magic" movie feel, which is basically 24 frames per second and 2.39:1.

    I for example don't watch cropped movies. It is for aesthetical reason that they use a format that wide. The frame looks different, there is more story told in each frame and there is a lot of useless detail missing that otherwise would be there (like a lamp overhead). You can do a lot more in 2.39:1 than in 16:9.
    Reply
  • radbeard - Tuesday, December 11, 2012 - link

    I recently started using a 29'' 21:9 display from the Dell Ultrasharp series. Some of my experience differs for this reason (minimal light bleeding and a stand that does allow the screen to move vertically), but it is largely a similar experience to this LG display.

    This monitor, and aspect ratio, are near-perfect for a specific set of functions and entirely wrong for most mainstream home usage.

    For movie watching, you are probably better off with a cheap and large 1080p 27'' panel. Most content is this, or nearly this, aspect ratio and the screens are less expensive.

    For games a true 2560x1440 monitor offers a larger display area, and is preferable.

    For web browsing a 21:9 monitor gives you an enormous quantity of dead space, and the same experience as a 23'' 1080p monitor.

    Where the 21:9 shines, and is quickly becoming indispensable for me is at-work productivity. As someone that is always working with 2-4 different files (pdfs, excel, email) I need to be able to see items side by side. Looking at a financial report and then updating the bits relevant, this is the perfect set of compromises.

    16:9 is NOT a work-friendly format. I do not need to see all those additional rows in excel normally (although 21:9 allows for more of that vision if necessary), I also don't need the extra width on PDFs (which are scanned from typical A4 letters), or emails, which scale.

    What I really need are 4:3 monitors, but a couple of then. The 21:9 format is very practically 2 of these monitors combined in one. You take different documents and give them each half a screen.

    It is for this use that the review should be directed. I strongly encourage offices that use multi-screen setups, or ask their employees to work with multiple pieces of data at once to consider these as replacements.
    Reply
  • Kevin G - Tuesday, December 11, 2012 - link

    Have you been able to test the DisplayPort chaining this with that Dell? First monitor I've seen commonly available to have that feature. Reply
  • radbeard - Tuesday, December 11, 2012 - link

    afraid not. I have this at my desk at work. Reply
  • CharonPDX - Tuesday, December 11, 2012 - link

    Yes, I could do math, but I'm busy at work and too lazy to figure it out:

    How does this compare in vertical size to a 27" 16:9 display? Is it the same height, only wider? Or is it shorter in height?

    Did you compare input lag on different interfaces? DP vs. HDMI vs. DVI? It's possible that one input is "native" and the others go through conversion internally, adding lag that wouldn't be present on a different input.
    Reply
  • radbeard - Tuesday, December 11, 2012 - link

    i have the dell version. its about the same height as a 23'' 16:9 display but wider.

    Its awesome for productivity, not media.
    Reply

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