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NEC 2490 / 2690 / Sean Reid / Luminous Landscape

Edward Bussa

New member
Okay,

We've been talking about the NEC 2490 / 2690, with Andrew Rodney choosing the 2690 (comment here).

Now Sean Reid gives the 2490 a rave review and Luminous Landscape gives it a mention.

My question is, does the Wide Gamut of the 2690 introduce challenges to the color management process (ie, is life just easier with the 2490?), or was the 2490 all that Sean had to review?

In other words, does anyone know if there was a reason Sean decided to review the 2490 over the 2690?
 

Andrew Rodney

New member
My question is, does the Wide Gamut of the 2690 introduce challenges to the color management process (ie, is life just easier with the 2490?), or was the 2490 all that Sean had to review?

In other words, does anyone know if there was a reason Sean decided to review the 2490 over the 2690?
Different tools. Neither is easier or more difficult to deal with in terms of color management. A lot has to do with what kinds of images you hope to edit and understanding the advantages and disadvantages of the different products based on their gamut.

If you work with highly saturated imagery that falls outside of sRGB gamut (not that hard to find), there's an issue with sRGB devices in that there are colors in the documents you can't see to edit or soft proof. That's where a wide gamut display helps. But, if you work with images that basically fall into sRGB gamut, the wide gamut display can present issues in seeing subtle colors. Both deal with 24 bit images and what's important to understand is, the colorimetric differences between say R23/G78/B127 and R23/G79/B127 are father apart in a wide gamut display than a narrower gamut display. If you're working on a subtle color image, its harder to see the differences in values on a wider gamut display.

Ideally, you want both and would use them based on the types of images you are currently working on.
 

Asher Kelman

OPF Owner/Editor-in-Chief
Both deal with 24 bit images and what's important to understand is, the colorimetric differences between say R23/G78/B127 and R23/G79/B127 are father apart in a wide gamut display than a narrower gamut display. If you're working on a subtle color image, its harder to see the differences in values on a wider gamut display.

Ideally, you want both and would use them based on the types of images you are currently working on.
Andrew,

What about is a wide gamut display that could be set to sRGB or any other space easily each with one's associated remapping tables?

Asher
 

Andrew Rodney

New member
Andrew,
What about is a wide gamut display that could be set to sRGB or any other space easily each with one's associated remapping tables?
It can't really. We can't alter the chromaticity of the unit (with this technology). And you can't profile the system in that mode. Its mainly used for viewing say the web or other non ICC aware applications where a wide gamut might look butt ugly.
 

Edward Bussa

New member
I haven't! But only because I don't have a subscription. I am in the market, shopping for a color management solution though - therefore the interest and the post.
 

Edward Bussa

New member
Andrew, this makes me think that using a Wide Gamut display for everday use could be painful?

This is all news to me, and I know this is a topic that defies description with words, but are there any resources at your site or elsewhere that can help me get an understanding of this?

PS: Now that I look, your review of the NEC 2180, seems to cover much of this ground already - thanks!
 

Andrew Rodney

New member
Andrew, this makes me think that using a Wide Gamut display for everday use could be painful?

This is all news to me, and I know this is a topic that defies description with words, but are there any resources at your site or elsewhere that can help me get an understanding of this?

PS: Now that I look, your review of the NEC 2180, seems to cover much of this ground already - thanks!
Its not at all painful. The best solution is an sRGB and wide gamut RGB display based on the type of images you edit. I have to say, I've seen no real issues using the wide gamut display thus far. Just received a 3090 yesterday, its HUGE and quite nice.

The 2180 isn't being made any more and NEC is moving them at some pretty aggressive pricing but for that kind of money, you can get a 3090 which is a mere 9 inches bigger. And if you think going from a 26" to a 30" doesn't seem like a lot, let me tell you its a really massive difference.
 

Edward Bussa

New member
I noticed in the article mentioned the 2180 was selling north of $5000 - I just thought it must be selling now for much less because the article was written several years ago...

I also assumed the 2690 (and the 3090) is made with the same technology, is it not?
 

Edward Bussa

New member
Because of your review i know how key it is. I'm disappointed!

Is the LED backlight a thing of the past for now or is there a professional line above the 2690, et al. ?
 

Andrew Rodney

New member
Because of your review i know how key it is. I'm disappointed!

Is the LED backlight a thing of the past for now or is there a professional line above the 2690, et al. ?
I think the LED was very expensive and difficult to manufacturer. It might resurface, not sure. Or some other more useful technology will result someday like OLED. Right now, the NEC is the best bang for the buck I know of.
 

Michael Fontana

pro member
Since yesterday night, I' in the market for a 2690 WUXI as well, as the main monitor, still a CRT died.

But somehow confused about the difference of the US vs Euro-versions. The Euro-versions won't allow to adjust the LUT, aka hardwarecalibration.

I don't understand that NEC has these policies; as we pay a 40%upgradet price anyway...

Seen that the gamut is wide, is it a big disadvantage?
 

Andrew Rodney

New member
The only experience I've had is with the USA software which is awesome. Not sure you have a choice really. If you're in the US, get the US software and move on. As for outside Europe, not sure what options there are.
 

Michael Fontana

pro member
Well, Andrew,
even the software could somehow come to Europe, the Euro-displays are blocked.

That's what I found when doing some researches. It might be worth flying over... (??)
 

Michael Fontana

pro member
Andrew,

I'm sure that you know more about the difference from the 2690 WUXI to the LaCie 526. ;)

The point is, that LaCie has its main office/repair (here in Switzerland) about 1 km away from my studio, and the 526 does calibrate the hardware, meanwhile it'll be likely a adventure to get a 2690 with hardwarecalibration, here.
 

Michael Fontana

pro member
Well, after some (!!) hours of researches, I found out, that NEC has disabled in the 2008 (years) version of the 2690 WUXI the option to hardware-calibrate.

So this is different from the 2007-modell! With the 2007 one, it still was possible to get these options.

So basically NEC sells in Europe a hardware-calibratable display, but cripples it down to software-calibrating, only!! In the US, everbody gets the hardware-calibratable ones..

.....geeez; I better don't write, what I think about this company. Messing up with not less than 8 different names for a similar product, whithout specifying it.
 

Nill Toulme

New member
I have long been baffled by NEC Europe's policies in this regard. I suppose it does lead to some extra sales of the (hardware-calibratable, software-bundled) Spectraview versions of the monitors, but it's a very strange and I suspect largely counter-productive way to go about it.

Nill
~~
www.toulme.net
 

Andrew Rodney

New member
So basically NEC sells in Europe a hardware-calibratable display, but cripples it down to software-calibrating, only!! In the US, everbody gets the hardware-calibratable ones
Yes but we also have 8 years of Bush (sorry, couldn’t help myself).

I'm real, real happy with the hardware calibratable unit here in the US but we both know which is the lesser of two evils.
 

Michael Fontana

pro member
Ok folks

let's hope Bush isn't involved in the LaCie 526 I'll get tomorrow.
Finally, I wanted it to be hardware-calibratable... and hope LaCie wasn't messing up the software, as the puck is the same. (Eye one)

Nil, a reeeealy bad thing about theat NEC company is, that they don't specify really that product; I' ve been messing arround nights (80 MB of files) just to figure out, which version works whith wich software and which puck..... for that time only, you should boycott that company ;)

Andrew, as you' re here:
In another forum you wrote:
"Wide gamut displays that ONLY provide the wider gamut are not good guys. What we need are displays that produce both the wide gamut (Adobe RGB (1998)) and sRGB. Why? Suppose you're editing an image that falls close to sRGB, say a bride in a wedding dress. On a wide gamut display, the colors are spread far wider making it far more difficult to see subtle colors. You have the ability to display 16.7 million colors (at least doing the math). Imagine your sRGB display is a half inflated balloon with 16.7 million dots painted on it. Now blow up the balloon 2X larger and the space between each dot grows larger. The subtle colors that may have had say a deltaE of say .8 now has a deltaE of 2 when displayed on the wide gamut unit. That makes it much harder to see subtle colors (say the difference between 150/175/200 and 150/176/200). "

Is this still correct with the 2690WUXI/LaCie as well?
Correct me if I'm wrong, but I understand it like that:

In shots were the scene itself has a smaller gamut (like interiors with not much color) one should try to keep - with a wider gamut display - a rather °to big° contrast as later in print, that will be "equalised"?
 

Andrew Rodney

New member
"Wide gamut displays that ONLY provide the wider gamut are not good guys. What we need are displays that produce both the wide gamut (Adobe RGB (1998)) and sRGB. Why? Suppose you're editing an image that falls close to sRGB, say a bride in a wedding dress. On a wide gamut display, the colors are spread far wider making it far more difficult to see subtle colors. You have the ability to display 16.7 million colors (at least doing the math). Imagine your sRGB display is a half inflated balloon with 16.7 million dots painted on it. Now blow up the balloon 2X larger and the space between each dot grows larger. The subtle colors that may have had say a deltaE of say .8 now has a deltaE of 2 when displayed on the wide gamut unit. That makes it much harder to see subtle colors (say the difference between 150/175/200 and 150/176/200). "
With the exception of the new (expensive) HP 2480zx, you get what you get in terms of the gamut. So ideally, you'd have both an sRGB and wide gamut (unless of course, all your work fell into one or the other group). IOW, current displays can't alter their gamut via a shift on the fly method like the HP.
 
Well, after some (!!) hours of researches, I found out, that NEC has disabled in the 2008 (years) version of the 2690 WUXI the option to hardware-calibrate.

So this is different from the 2007-modell! With the 2007 one, it still was possible to get these options.

So basically NEC sells in Europe a hardware-calibratable display, but cripples it down to software-calibrating, only!! In the US, everbody gets the hardware-calibratable ones..

.....geeez; I better don't write, what I think about this company. Messing up with not less than 8 different names for a similar product, whithout specifying it.

Thanks for that Inof Michael, I asked my dealer (CANCOM in Germany ) to get a statement from NEC on that, he tries to talk to them tomorrow. If that is the case as you described, I will not buy the 3090 in fact I already ordered one, and have to look again for a different 30".

Anything else that you can recommend in the 30 " class Andrew, let aside budget, just in terms of quality? It is really a confusing matter and I sure do not want to drop that amount of cash and get a sausage. From their site they would have another

- NEC spectraview 3090
- Samsung XL30
- EIZO SX3031W

... decisions decisions.... Thanks in advance for your opinion!

Of course I will let you Folks know what NEC says, if any....
 

Nill Toulme

New member
Just to clarify what I understand to have been NEC EU's policy in the past, and assume (without evidence) still to be their policy... I believe they disable hardware calibration, and the ability to run the Spectraview calibration/profiling software, in non-Spectraview versions of the EU monitors. The Spectraview versions, in contrast, ship with the Spectraview software (and used to include a hood), and are fully hardware calibratable. (Is "calibratable" a word?)

It may be the case that there is not yet available in Europe a Spectraview version of the 3090wuxi, but that doesn't mean there won't be one, and soon.

Nill
~~
www.toulme.net
 

Michael Fontana

pro member
Andrew,
as for the small gamut-images:
is it possible to make the palette-display - a 19' CRT - to became sRGB-type?
This would allow to verify these images as well. Both LAB-Plot in colorsync-utility looks pretty similar

Nill:

Untill spring 2008, in Europe, you could buy the WUXI, and even NEC disabled its hardware-calibration-function, it was possible to get it back, within a hidden OSD-menue.

And if some US-friends would buy a Spectraview-II-license and mail its serial to you, you could use it whithout limitations. But you couldn't buy it with a european banccard, or adress...

I went through all that stuff, including some 60pages-threads, so this is just a summarisation...

So quite some euro-photographers jumped on that, meanwhile the US-friends proofed, that not all US-citizens are bushlike ....that one is for Andrew ;) ...

Somehow, NEC got aware of that, and they changed the firmware on the european WUXI's, whithout telling a word in spring 08..... so some poeple did buy it and run into the fact, that they just bought software-calibratable displays, only.

George: AFAIR, NEC doesn't comments on that. (As far as I read..)
These info's concern the 2690WUXI, so I can't comment on the bigger one.

Nill's:
"I suppose it does lead to some extra sales of the (hardware-calibratable, software-bundled) Spectraview versions of the monitors, but it's a very strange and I suspect largely counter-productive way to go about it."

In my °unstable° printing "environnement" = no inhouse productions, but delivering the images to architects, magazines, book editor's etc (therefore sending RGB-tiffs) I found the influence of the prepress guys quite important; more important than the photographer having a artisan or not.

My goal was to get a hardware calibratable one, and even, when playing in the NEC's Kindergarten, it was impossible, my choice was relativly. easy.
 
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