The Dell U3014 is rated for 350 cd/m2 on the spec sheet, but I found the most I could get it to produce was 315 cd/m2. It would likely produce more if you were to push the contrast all the way to the maximum, but doing so clips the top whites, so all your highlights suddenly become a single shade instead of distinct. It might make the numbers look worse, but not allowing clipping makes for an honest number, and 315 cd/m2 is what the U3014 can do. With the backlight at the minimum, it drops down to only 45 cd/m2 of light, which is good. That gives you lots of room to work with, and most users will be fine with these levels.

White Level -  i1DisplayPro

Black levels with the backlight at maximum are 0.357 cd/m2, and that drops down to 0.052 cd/m2 at minimum backlight. Dell offers a dynamic backlight on their displays where a pure black screen totally disables the backlights, giving you “infinite” contrast, but that option is disabled in the most color-accurate modes. It also seems be an all-or-nothing approach, and not one where you can selectively enable and disable part of the edge lighting. I’m not a fan of dynamic backlighting unless you have a full backlit LED array, where you can enable and disable it for parts of the screen at once, and find they are usually just tricks to make their contrast numbers seem better than they are. Dell is honest and gives you real and dynamic numbers in their specs, though.

Black Level - i1DisplayPro

These numbers wind up giving us a contrast ratio in the area of around 900:1. This is maintained from 0-100 percent on the backlight intensity, so it’s an honest 900:1 contrast ratio from the Dell U3014. There are some recent displays that have hit closer to 1,100:1 but these numbers are still quite good overall, and maintaining it across the whole range of brightness is ideal.

Contrast Ratio -  i1DisplayPro

This is a decent start for the U3014, but the real question for me is if they can keep the colors accurate in all color spaces with that new G-B LED backlight system.

Design, Setup, and OSD Pre-Calibration Accuracy, sRGB


View All Comments

  • Kevin G - Tuesday, April 16, 2013 - link

    I had to re-read the article to catch the few bits regarding MST support. I'm curious to see how well the MST hub works with a DP 1.1 monitor (more than likely) and a DP 1.1 output from a video card (not so likely). I was hoping for a bit more testing in this area but I guess you had to work with what you have on hand.

    Did you try any active DP-to-DVI adapters for usage with other displays?

    Could you logically rotate the display connected via the MST out port independently of the primary?

    Can the refresh rates on each monitor be adjust independently as well?
  • DigitalFreak - Monday, April 15, 2013 - link

    RTFA Reply
  • Trefugl - Monday, April 15, 2013 - link

    You mention a 30" IPS display selling at Monoprice. Do you have plans to review, or can point me in the direction of one? I'm interested in a 30" display that is "decent" - I plan on using it for typical desktop use and gaming. Reply
  • Martin_Schou - Monday, April 15, 2013 - link

    Does this monitor support USB over DisplayPort? I'm guessing it doesn't, and to be honest, I'm starting to be annoyed at having to pull an extra cable, that is frankly unneeded. Reply
  • cheinonen - Tuesday, April 16, 2013 - link

    It doesn't seem to, no. When I unplugged the USB cable the USB devices stopped working, even though its connected over DisplayPort. A restart didn't fix this either. Reply
  • airmantharp - Monday, April 15, 2013 - link

    TFT Central did an in-depth look into the input lag, and while they found similar numbers in the default modes, there is a 'gaming' mode that they measured at ~3ms. It appears to bypass all of the circuitry used for processing and scaling, and along with the new AG coating, makes this monitor preferable to HP's ZR30w for gaming. Reply
  • cheinonen - Monday, April 15, 2013 - link

    I ran all the tests in the gaming mode, so that is where the numbers come from. So I don't know if the different methods account for everything, or if they might have gotten a different firmware, or something else. Reply
  • airmantharp - Monday, April 15, 2013 - link

    I feel for you- trying to do an objective test without the equipment is challenging. I was just hoping to address some of the 'it's awful for gaming!' comments that ignored your mention of TFT Central's finding, especially as it's probably the best 30" for gaming. Reply
  • tocket - Monday, April 15, 2013 - link

    What are the CIE standard observer color matching curves doing in the "spectral signature" chart? That is not very useful I think - it only makes it more confusing. I also want to comment that having "a much larger spectrum of light wavelengths" does not give you a larger gamut volume. If you want to get the largest possible gamut monochromatic light sources should be used (ideally at something like 450, 520 and 640 nm). Reply
  • cjl - Monday, April 15, 2013 - link

    A quick comment - those touch sensitive buttons that you keep complaining about? Those aren't new. As a U3011 owner, I can tell you with some certainty that they've been there on Dell's flagship since at least the 3011. I haven't had any problems with mine either as far as responsiveness is concerned, but that may be personal preference (or maybe I happened to get a monitor with above-average responsiveness to the buttons). Reply

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