Performance - Part I
A monitor review based on descriptive visual analysis will always have the underlying problem of subjectivity; assessments of panel quality will vary from user to user depending on their normative expectations. To get around this we’re deploying Datacolor’s Spyder 4 Elite professional monitor analyser to return a quantitative assessment of display quality.
These numerical results, we feel, add extra utility to our reviews allowing us to more accurately benchmark the following display characteristics:
- Colour Gamut relative to sRGB and AdobeRGB industry-standards
- Brightness levels and contrast ratios
- Colour uniformity
- Brightness uniformity
- Colour accuracy
The tests are run under two different scenarios: uncalibrated and calibrated. Uncalibrated performance equates to the ‘out-of-the-box’ settings a monitor ships with; this is the typical end-user experience as very few consumers engage in calibration of their displays before use. Calibrated performance is what results after the monitor has been put through the Spyder4Elite hardware-calibration process with the following parameters: 2.2 Gamma, 6500k colour temperature and 120 nits of brightness. These calibrated results demonstrate what the monitor is capable of when tuned correctly but the results have limited relevance to most consumers who will not calibrate their monitors.
96 per cent of the sRGB gamut along with 74 per cent of Adobe RGB is typical of good-quality IPS and TN panels.
That quality carries over into colour accuracy where the Moda 2 produces less than a two Delta-E average in its stock configuration. A figure below one is recommended for colour-sensitive usage but the Moda 2 still reproduces colour with what we'd call very good accuracy.
Colour uniformity can fluctuate significantly between similar monitors due to quality variation in the assembly process. The Moda 2 we tested had a bottom-left to top-right colour gradient. The numbers look a little menacing because in-person the differences aren't perceivable, but it's something to take note of for users who have a keen eye for such detail.