Eizo CS240 and CS270 already display perfect colors and have a perfectly uniform panel. What does the Eizo ColorEdge CG277 add since it shares the same panel? A number of details that make it perfect! Very simply.
But who is this perfect screen for?! Of course, for photographers who want the best but especially, who don't want to have to think about their monitor and its calibrations, for professional editors and graphic designers who must offer their clients all display guarantees, and finally for video editors because this screen is full of delicate attentions towards them...
In the ColorEdge range, the CG277 caps the excellent range of CS270 and CX271. This monitor (just like its little brother Eizo CG247) is aimed towards those who don't want to make concessions about the quality of their screen and, accessorily, want to make their life easier by not having to think about calibration anymore since it has a built-in calibrator. Everything about this screen is refinement, display accuracy at a level that only a sensor can measure... and that's the problem: you would have almost as perfect a display with the CS270, but without all the warranties and accessories sold with the CG277. For video editors, it's a little different here: this monitor is the only one featuring all the functionalities they need to display their productions. For about €2,000, you would thus have a color display in the Adobe RGB 98 color space absolutely perfect, 93% of the DCI, a FOGRA certification (class A screen), an homogeneity just as perfect thanks to the DUE Eizo technology, a built-in sensor that can calibrate by night hence free your mind from this trouble, a 10 bits display, and a 3D LUT table on 16 bits, an HDMI interface that can manage I/P conversions and 1080/24 pictures/sec, a five-years warranty and so much more. I told you that everything about this screen was refined!
Presentation of the screen Eizo ColorEdge CG277
To start with, here are a few illustrations of this screen of perfect ergonomics... and probably the best manufacturing quality I ever saw before my admiring eyes!
Main technical characteristics of the Eizo CG277
Size : 27 inches 16:9 - 2,560 x 1,440 - 108 ppi
Plate: IPS white LEDs - Glossy panel, Calibration program : ColorNavigator (hardware calibration) Built-in colorimeter: Yes / programmable calibration Color space: 99% of Adobe RGB 98, 93% DCI, 100% ISOCOATED Brightness/contrast: 350 Cd/m2 / 700:1 (Measured) Wirings: DVI + DisplayPort + HDMI. (HUB 2 x USB 2.0) LUT table: 16 bits - hardware calibration. Edges: width (22 mm). Delay: 7 ms. VESA compatibility: Yes (100mm). Cap: Yes. Warranty: 5 years.
A USB 2.0 input for hardware calibration and power the USB hub.
Colornavigator on a CD
The extra bit! a cleaning kit for the panel (cleaning product+cloth)
Bulkiness and perceived quality
The screen has a 27" panel and is 64.5 cm (the panel is 24'' wide). It is moderately bulky for a 27". As for perceived quality, it is excellent, really. Maybe the best finishing quality I ever saw during my reviews until then... You just need to see the profile of this screen to understand that it is really under control considering its thickness: 9 cm of electronics!
The screen and its panel
1 - Definition/resolution - It is the same panel as the CS270/CX271 - but a carefully selected one since it is class A - so a glossy IPS panel, normal for this range of screens called "Graphic Arts", and of 2560 x 1440 pixels. Its resolution is thus 108 ppi. Classic and not "Rétina" but guess what, thanks to the incredible anti-reflections treatment I'll mention again below, the pixels seem almost invisible from a "normal" viewing distance on a desk (60 cm); this is all very beautiful. The backlighting is a white-LEDs type.
Note! If you calibrate your screen with iProfiler - which I don't especially recommend given the level of excellence of the built-in sensor - the "white LEDs" backlighting is automatically preset if you installed the last 1.6.x. version.
2 - The panel and its anti-reflection treatment - I've been noticing for a short while and clearly on this screen that a "glossy" anti-reflections treatment doesn't mark the pixels anymore, which gives this panel a superb rendering on images and gradients. Very beautiful. Anti-reflections treatments that gave the pixels a grainy aspect are finally over. Phew!
Note! The panel of the CG277 is the same model as the CS270 (or the CS240) so the relationship is obvious. This is the visible part of the iceberg because the CG's panel is carefully selected and of A-class. In different terms, the best panels produced end up in the ColorEdge serial! but since it's Eizo, even the "worst" panels are excellent!
3 - Brightness and homogeneity with the DUE functionality - This very efficient functionality that acts as an equalizer enables to guarantee a display homogeneity with measured differences that don't pass 5%. Which means invisible or almost!
4 - The built-in calibration sensor - This very small built-in calibration sensor, working together with the famous program ColorNavigator sold with the screen and detailed below, that is not bigger than 2 cm when you take it out of its compartment at the bottom left of the screen, will enable to perform a "real" calibration, unlike the model CX271 and possibly automatically, at a periodicity of your choice - 200h by default, so an average of 20 days for a professional. You can still perform a calibration with your favorite sensor but this calibration sensor is perfect and the calibration is very fast.
My recommendation! It is thus possible to program calibration at night to find an ever-perfect screen in the morning. The monitor is thus going to switch on itself and preheat for seven minutes. It is the time this new generation of screens needs to reach the perfect temperature, while it took at least half an hour a few years ago... You'll perform one monthly calibration and it will be perfectly sufficient. On the one hand, new screens are very stable because they heat a lot less than CRT screens, so they don't need to be calibrated a priori, while on the other hand, this screen enables to program your calibration when you're not using it so the programmation frequency doesn't matter much!
4 - The video part - The video part of this screen is really thorough and represents the best of its category. Here's why:
The 3D LUT table manages 10 bits in input and 16 bits in output for a perfect display of gradients, even more if you install this screen on a 10 bits graphic card (Quadro 620 if you use one screen and Quadro K2200 if you use several) and provided your computer is a PC.
It manages 4K x 2K signals perfectly on the DisplayPort input (30 Hz frequency)
Overdrive functionality for a fluid video display (equivalent to a 7 ms delay).
For video postproduction - I/P conversion
For video postproduction - HMDI: 1080 with 24 images/sec.
This screen has an HDMI input (with direct connexion to a digital camera), a DisplayPort input, a USB 2.0 input to guarantee hardware calibration, meaning sending the ICC profile generated directly into the LUT table of the screen and not only to the graphic card and finally to USB 2.0 inputs (USB 2.0 only!).
The program ColorNavigator
My recommendation! Even if calibration with the i1 Display is very efficient as you'll see below, the interest of this screen lies among others in its built-in colorimeter. It turns out to be perfect and even a bit better than my favorite sensor. I strongly recommend the use of the built-in sensor that can only work with ColorNavigator!
This screen is sold with its calibration program, the famous ColorNavigator working together with the built-in sensor. This top-range program will not only allow you to perform an "ideal" calibration, but also to check that it matches different printing norms - FOGRACERT - or video edition norms - REC 709 or DCI. It guarantees you an ideal calibration, and very easy to perform moreover, for those of you who don't really master the meaning of all target values.
ColorNavigator also manages other functionalities of control and comparison between the screen and a print seen in a control cabin for instance and many other things as well.
I'll write a dedicated tutorial for ColorNavigator later...
Ergonomics are classic but a "real" wire grommet would have been welcome! The range of motion of the screen in height (on 15 cm), tilting and rotation will enable all users to find their ideal setting. Really perfect! The menu buttons on the screen are classic, not too elegant either but it is obviously a detail.
What is it like after calibration with the i1Display Pro?
I first performed the calibration of this screen with the current best sensor (except for the superlative and very expensive Discus - about €1,000) of simply excellent value for money: the i1Display Pro + program iProfiler (version 1.6.3). It enables to compare this screen with other ones on the market even if it is very clear that I strongly advise you to use the built-in colorimeter, noticeably even better, especially for grey gradients neutralization. You'll see that the figures are already hardly believable, as if by chance very close to the CS240 or the CX241 (well, well, well!) so it could only be better with ColorNavigator but I'm afraid you wouldn't see the difference, even if the numbers are even better. And yet at this level, it's hard to find the margin of error of the sensor and/or the program. Let me remind you that a very sharp eye can see a difference of 1/200. We're talking of average gaps of 1/400 here!
As screen settings, I chose:
Color space: Adobe RGB 98
Gamma: Adobe RGB 98 (2.2)
Color temperature: 6500K.
And as target values in the program...
Screen technology: white LEDs is automatically selected,
D65 or possibly a bit less if you want a slightly warmer screen (Note that at D55, the screen is really warm but never yellow like on low-range screens),
Brightness: 80 Cd/m2 or more depending on your main use (print 80 Cd/m2 Web 120 Cd/m2) and above all the brightness of your room,
Contrast: Native for the web or 287:1 for those who print a lot,
Gamma at 2.2 - standard curve, (the L* is only available with ColorNavigator and there's already much to say about this "gamma" that will make dark part very bright, too bright, anyway...)
ICC norm: V2 (to avoid compatibility issues with certain image viewing programs (images too dark) and of course V4 if you know what you're doing.
And the result is?
Objective data: what does the final report after calibration say?
Once calibration is finished, the color temperature indeed reaches 6482K, the brightness of the black is only 0.11 Cd/m2 so very deep. The native measured contrast is 710:1. Personally, I prefer a ratio of 287:1 for a better comparison between screen and print.
Delta E figures (norm 2000) are of course exceptional and furiously alike those of the CS240 or the CX241 (they share the same panel... in a smaller version of course!) by far under the value of 1 - 0.71 - even for the patches that are the furthest from the ideal. It is already more than perfect. You'll se that with ColorNavigator these already perfect results don't get better! At this level, it's going to be delicate to get better results in numbers because of reading uncertainties of the sensor and above all, you won't see any difference with your bare eyes unless you're Superman.
My opinion! As it could be expected, the panel gets the same delta e type as the CS240/CX241, also superlative, to the point that a calibration with ColorNavigator won't add anything to the respect. However, ColorNavigator and especially the built-in sensor will enable to perform an even better grey neutralization and to realize a so-called "hardware" calibration where the ICC profile is directly injected in the 16-bits LUT table of the screen in order to guarantee even smoother color gradients (that's the pitch, at least). In fact, it is already so good with this valorous i1Display Pro!
Now let's see the tests for harmonization in brightness and color temperature:
Once again, the results are superlative: under 1% on a 27" panel!
In color temperature, it is a bit less spectacular since there can be a difference of maximum 87K! On a 27" it is simply unbelievable...
Calibration with the built-in colorimeter and ColorNavigator
The screen Eizo CG277 exempts you from buying a colorimeter because it is already built in the lower section of the screen. It will get out of its little trap when a calibration is requested. This colorimeter of excellent manufacturing - even better than the i1Display Pro (within the framework of this review hence with my personal sensor) - is commanded by the program ColorNavigator sold with the screen. This program stands as a reference thanks to its performances and its monitoring possibilities once the calibration performed. I thus recommend it without any reservations.
1 - Programmation of the calibration
Calibration can thus be programmed. It will be performed all by itself where, usually, you're only told that you're going to have to do it. And even better, it can even be performed on a switched-off screen by night. Calibration won't encroach on your working time! The very short heating time of the Eizo CG277 - 7 minutes - wouldn't keep you from using the screen for a very long time either. For a professional use, I recommend a monthly calibration, just to be really, really reassured!
2 - A real hardware calibration
To work, the screen of course needs to be plugged on the electric network but also to the computer thanks to the provided USB 2.0 wire and through which the ICC profile is going to pass directly to the LUT table of the screen in order to guarantee a gradient display as progressive as possible. In addition, if you connect your screen to an Nvidia Quadro card on a PC (it doesn't work on Mac) you'll experience the joy of displaying your images on 10 bits in input! It would only show on certain images but professional editors are going to appreciate it.
3 - Choose target values
In ColorNavigator I chose "Create a new target" in the left column:
Brightness: 80 Cd/m2 for print and 100/120 Cd/m2 for a web/graphic design main use,
White point: 5000K for those who print and 6500K for the others,
Gamma: 2.2 (the L Star brightens dark tones too much).
Note! It is of course possible to change a huge number of target values in ColorNavigator but if you need to choose others you'll know why and how to do it, where and what values to pick.
When everything's ready, click on the button at the top right "Adjust" (2)
Then choose the built-in sensor as colorimeter and launch calibration. It is rather fast because it only reviews 32 patches.
Objective data: what does the final report say after calibration?
Once calibration is finished, the color temperature reached is indeed 6504K, the brightness of black is only 0.13 Cd/m2 hence very deep and similar to the results obtained with the i1Display Pro. The native measured contrast is 623:1, here again very close to the result obtained with the i1Display Pro.
DeltaEs in accordance to norm 2000 give on the set of 32 patches a lower value of 0.1 only and a maximum of 1.07 in saturated yellows. The average value is 0.38. So theoretically, ColorNavigator and the built-in sensor are equal to the i1Display Pro and iProfiler. Those of you who wanted to know the difference between the two sets are now informed!
And my subjective data: what does my eye see?
Objectively, I could say that grey neutralization is maybe even more neutral with the solution ColorNavigator, that the grey gradient test is even a bit more progressive but it's really because we need a winner! The real winner, in fact, is the simplicity of use thanks to the programmation of this built-in solution. Too bad it's twice as expensive as the CS270...
Conclusion and my rating!
I just have one wish: that you could all treat yourselves to this screen or its little brother CG247! How delightful to review this kind of equipment. I assure you, everything about this screen Eizo CG277is refinement and perfection. You know all the good I think about the great Eizo CS240 well it's even better, obviously only slightly because Eizo CS240 and CG270 are already incredible but here everything is even more optimized. For video editors, no one stands the competition. And we have to bow to the evidence, the built-in sensor + the program ColorNavigator are even a step ahead of my favorite sensor, the i1Display Pro, especially for grey neutralization and I'm not even mentioning how comfortable it is.
It is the ideal screen for printers, without a doubt, for video editors also and of course for professional editors or photographers who don't want to have to think about their equipment and want to be able to rely on their screen and its guarantees with their eyes shut. Happy owners won't even have to take care of calibrating their screen since it can be programmed to be performed at night! Thanks Eizo!
USB 3.0 is missing
Average delta e: 0.30!
Value for money
Record figures after calibration with the i1Display Pro: average delta e of 0.30 and maximum gap of 0.65 (Norm 2000) when the eye has a hard time seeing differences under 1!
Identical DeltaE with Colornavigator but with even more neutral greys,
"Glossy" matte IPS panel with a perfect rendering, smooth without the grainy effect of former generations,
wide gamut (Adobe RGB 98), Fogra Certification,
Built-in sensor + Colornavigator
Fast, accurate and programmable calibration,
The perfect screen for video editors (REC 709, DCI)
HDMI in 1080/24 images/sec.
Best manufacturing quality I ever saw
My opinion: Everything about this CG277 is perfection (and I guess about the Eizo CG247 as well!) What a treat to review this product and thus to recommend it. Happy owners, video editors, printers and photographers!
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