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Colour models and HDMI black level

The adjustment of the video level is also very important for the correct display of the material. Adjustment problems can lead to pronounced clipping in brighter and darker colours or give rise to a flat image with reduced range of hues and without full black or white.

Test of the correct signal level on the EA231WMi.

Like most devices without a HDMI input, the EA231WMi cannot display YCbCr material and accordingly shows it in pseudo-colours. For playback of RGB via DVI, the EA231WMi assumes PC levels. If video format is played back, the signal should first be converted to PC level in order to ensure optimal display of black and white.

Pseudo-colour display of YCbCr material.


The NEC EA231WMi convinces in almost all areas. Even the manufacturing quality of the exterior and the mechanics leave nothing to be desired; the EA231WMi offers all ergonomic functions and will convince users with a simple design and perfect manufacturing quality.

However, the inexpensive 23-inch monitor also keeps up with the more expensive competition. In terms of image quality, the EA231WMi, with its eIPS-Panel, easily beats the TN panels, which are only slightly cheaper. The quality of the grey level resolution and differentiation and the contrast level and viewing angles put the majority of the competition to shame. The innovative control of the menu with a joystick, which makes navigation considerably easier, is another practical feature.

Furthermore, praise is also due to the very low power consumption, including the "ECO modes" and brightness, which is controlled according to the surroundings, as well as the almost silent work at various levels of brightness. Most fans of Silent PCs should be happy with the EA231WMi with regard to this latter aspect.

The EA231WMi also cut an astonishingly good figure when it came to video playback. Although it does not have a HDMI connection, it can still convince users with a format of 6:9, 50-Hertz playback and a FullHD resolution. The brilliant image quality contributes a considerable amount here. Playback in games is similarly good, especially because of a very low input lag.

The NEC EA231WMi demonstrated very few weaknesses in our test. Hardcore gamers should not opt for the model, since the streaking is somewhat stronger than with TN panels at times. Another minor negative aspect is the imperfect colour display in the factory settings and especially in the sRGB mode. When calibrated, however, the EA231WMi can compensate for this weakness.

However, the uneven brightness distribution is a more important reason for criticism and was even noticeable without a measuring device. This means that the NEC EA231WMi missed out on a rating of very good, but because of the relatively low price, we can still give a clear recommendation to buy it.

Overall rating: GOOD

Technical specifications: NEC EA231WMi-BK

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