NEC EA294WMi Reviewby Chris Heinonen on February 10, 2014 6:00 AM EST
As mentioned before, NEC consumer displays use a regular percentage for brightness instead of the more precise cd/m^2 numbers in their professional displays. Despite this change, one thing that NEC does offer for both is a wide range of brightness settings.
The EA294WMi only produces 6 cd/m^2 with the brightness control at the minimum setting while still putting out 326 cd/m^2 at the maximum level. I would suggest that 6 is too low and that you could make the minimum 40 cd/m^2 while still allowing more granular control and a better minimum and maximum. That’s being picky and seeing a level that is low enough for anyone is much better than seeing a minimum value of 100 cd/m^2 that would make the ES294WMi too bright for many users.
Black levels are also good on the NEC. At maximum brightness we see a black level of 0.330 cd/m^2. With the brightness at minimum it produces 0.0076 cd/m^2 with a pure black screen. Both are good numbers for an IPS panel.
The contrast ratio at the maximum light output level is 989:1 but that falls down to 838:1 at minimum brightness. Since the minimum brightness extends so low, that probably influences the contrast ratio at that level. Small errors in reading the black level, or any stray light that might be picked up, can cause a larger shift. Kept at a more commonly used level, like 120 cd/m^2, the contrast ratios will be closer to the 989:1 of the maximum backlight level.
The NEC does quite well on these initial measurements. The 21:9 IPS panel continues to produce some of the best measurements of any IPS panel out there right now.