- High image quality
- 100% Adobe RGB coverage
- Very good colour performance
- Portrait / Landscape Orientation
- 2-year warranty
- Excellent value for money
- 10-bit display when connected via DisplayPort
- Cables included in box
- Displayport, HDMI and DVI-D inputs
- Built in USB 3 hub and SD card reader
- Excellent value for money
- Could tilt and rotate more
- On-screen menus can feel slow
- Slightly more reflective screen than an EIZO
- Palette Master Element can be a little slow
- Not completely uniform across the display, with yellow tints to some areas
The BenQ SW2700PT is a 27inch wide-gamut colour monitor offering 99% AdobeRGB colour (and 100% sRGB), a high resolution 2560×1440 display, hardware calibration built-in, a black and white photo mode, and includes a shading hood as well as a controller, all for around £550/$825.
There is an AHVA IPS panel and viewing angles are 178/178 degrees. The monitor can display 1.07 billion colours, and maximum brightness is 350cm/m2 with a contrast ratio of 1000:1. Video inputs include HDMI, 25 pin DVI-D and Displayport, which supports continuous 10bit colour reproduction for smoother tones. Response time is 5ms grey-to-grey, which should be good for video (and gaming), as response times below 8ms are generally considered good by today’s standards. The monitor also features a built in USB3 hub, and SD card reader.
The monitor is supported by an easily manoeuvrable height adjustable stand, which easily accommodates the monitor in both landscape and portrait orientation and makes it easy to find a comfortable viewing position. The design includes a route for the cables, as well as a place to put the OSD remote control, which plugs into a MiniUSB socket in the back of the monitor.
Designed for photography, and colour accurate work, the monitor is designed to work with BenQ’s Palette Master Element software, which is used to calibrate the monitor display, and updates the monitor’s LUT (Colour Look Up Tables) to ensure accurate colour is consistently displayed. The monitor is calibrated at the factory, and a sheet is provided to show the results of calibration with a colour deviation of below 2. It’s a good idea to calibrate regularly and to do this using the provided software you will need to use a calibration device such as a Spyder4, 5 or i1 Display Pro. If you use multiple monitors, then it’s worthwhile calibrating both devices.
DisplayPort, DVI-DL and HDMI inputs are included for connecting to various types of graphics adapters. When using the Displayport connection, simultaneous 10-bit colour display is possible, via a 14bit look-up table, which means the display is capable of displaying more than one billion colours at once.
The monitor supports a number of calibration devices which are needed for use the with BenQ Palette Master Element software. The devices supported include: X-Rite i1 Display Pro / i1 Pro / i1 Pro 2 & Datacolor Spyder 4 and Spyder 5. You’ll need to download the software from BenQ’s website.
- 27inch matt screen
- 2560×1440 (QHD) native resolution
- 1000:1 native contrast ratio
- 350 cd/m2 brightness, 5ms response time (GTG)
- DVI-DL (25-pin), DisplayPort 1.2, and HDMI 1.4 inputs
- Palette Master Element colour calibration software
- Black-and-White photo mode
- Wide Colour Gamut (99% AdobeRGB)
- 14-bit 3D Look Up Table (LUT)
- On-Screen Display Control (Remote)
- Shading Hood, with gap for calibration device
- USB 3.0 hub, Headphone jack
- Landscape / Portrait orientation
- 2-year warranty
The BenQ SW2700PT has a business like design at the front, and a more modern, and slightly stylish design at the back, with a shiny area and large logo. A weight of 9.17kg isn’t as heavy as EIZO ColorEdge monitors, and the stand has no problem supporting the weight, whilst offering ease of adjustment for height, tilt and orientation. The power light is a bright white, although it doesn’t appear as though this brightness can be adjusted.
A cable tidy is included on the rear of the stand for keeping everything neat once it’s set up how you like. There’s also a blue ruler marker, so that you can keep the monitor at a specific height, which will be particularly useful for those who have OCD tendencies, or annoying co-workers. There’s also a handle at the top, making it easier to lift the monitor if needed.
The monitor can swivel 35 degrees left and right, which isn’t much when compared to an EIZO ColorEdge monitor, and if you regularly want to show others what’s on your screen then this may feel limiting.
Quick Menu and buttons
You can quickly change between calibration profiles using the remote controller, and you can set buttons 1, 2, and 3 to your preferred colour modes. There are a plethora of built-in colour modes (Standard, AdobeRGB, sRGB, Black and White, Photo, Low Blue Light), as well as your own calibration settings. There are also two custom modes available.
Benq SW2700PT Rear Ports
The ports available are 25 pin DVI-D, HDMI and Displayport as well as a headphone socket, a USB upstream connection, and MicroUSB for the remote control. There are two USB 3.0 sockets and an SD card reader on the side of the monitor.
There is no way to attach a device via an analogue connection to this display, so owners of computers using older graphics hardware (or many older Windows/Linux compatible laptops) may need to upgrade their equipment to use this monitor. A full range of cables and a hood for shading the display are provided in the box, leaving you wanting nothing, in order to set it up.
Benq SW2700PT – Full Menu
The resolution of 2560×1440 provides plenty of working space, while text is still comfortable to read due to the large size of the screen. One minor drawback is that normal HD video is of a lower resolution, however, the monitor does a good job of displaying the image when stretched over the full size of the screen. This is also noticeable when using the HDMI connection, as the highest resolution is 1920×1080, but again the monitor does a good job displaying a reasonably sharp image.
All this extra workspace makes checking focus on images is a pleasure, and provides more than enough space for working with several programs on at the same time.
Viewing angles are 178 degrees for both vertical and horizontal, which is the same as the slightly more expensive NEC Spectraview Reference 272 27” display. Although the viewing angle is typical for a high-end display using IPS panel technology, those who are used to the older TN panel technology will be amazed by the difference this makes. Colour and brightness remain consistent, even when viewing the screen from almost any angle. To the eye, the screen appears remarkably consistent in terms of brightness across its surface, and there is no flicker, even under fluorescent lighting.
Video quality is good with excellent blacks and good contrast, and the screen updates quickly with no visible ghosting even with rapidly changing action. There is also no discernible backlight bleed which is common on budget orientated monitors using IPS panel technology. The matt screen surface also helps to ensure reflections are kept to a minimum, although there was a slight reflection visible with bright light sources.
Out of the box, there is a slightly warm colour to the image. Using BenQ’s software Palette Master Element you need to use a calibration device to calibrate the monitor, and this should resolve most colour issues. There is a slight colour change towards the left side, and towards the right-hand side, as the image becomes a little yellower on the left.
Measurements and Calibration
Using Palette Master Element
We used BenQ’s Palette Master Element software, set the colour mode to Calibration 1, 120cd/m2, 6505K colour, and ran the calibration, with a Spyder5 Elite. The results for colour temperature was 6508K, and brightness is very close to the requested 120 cd/m2 value, at 119.2 cm/m2.
Colour Validation Results
Validation Report – Using the advanced mode on Palette Master Element, you are able to measure the monitor’s colour performance (Calibration 1), and we measured an average ΔE of 0.43, and a maximum ΔE of 1.01, which is excellent!
Nb. Delta-E (ΔE) is the measurement of the difference between the expected or requested colour, and the actual colour measured by the calibration device. The lower this number, the better.
It’s possible to save the results of performance as an HTML document, so that you have a record of how the monitor is performing, which could be particularly important for colour critical work, or to show that your computer and monitor is set up correctly. Or to record any changes over time.
Using i1 Display Pro to measure the performance of the monitor:
Colour results – Black luminance was measured as 0.115cm/m2, luminance 117 cm/m2 (120 requested), and contrast ratio of 1020:1. Colour temperature was 6481K, which is very close to the requested 6500K.
Measuring the colour difference (Delta-E again), with the i1 Display Pro, the average was 0.59, maximum 1.78, again very impressive results.
White point and Luminance results, and measuring uniformity across the screen:
Using the i1 Display Pro and i1 Profiler Software, 6500K was the Colour temperature achieved in the centre of the monitor, but this deviated as we measured different points on the screen. Luminance was a little off the requested 120cd/m2 being 117 cd/m2 in the centre of the frame.
|Luminance Figures||White Point Figures|
|Luminance Graph||White Point Graph|
Brightness across the screen is consistent, with the worst result a slight deviation in brightness in one corner of 9%, with most of the screen giving better uniformity.
Colour temperature across the screen was reasonable across the screen, although there was stronger deviation towards the bottom left of the screen. It was also noticeable when reading black text on a white background, as the left of the screen appeared yellower, and the right of the screen colder. This also shows up in black and white mode, which may disappoint those interested in pure black and white viewing.
We measured the BenQ SW2700PT with a Spyder5 Elite, and it shows as having 100% of AdobeRGB, as well as 100% of sRGB and 97% NTSC. This is impressive, considering the monitor is described as offering 99% AdobeRGB, and an EIZO ColorEdge CG276 managed 99% AdobeRGB (and 95% NTSC) in comparison.
We found the best results were from using a calibration device in combination with the Palette Master Element software, which meant the software was able to write the calibration results to the monitor’s LUT.
Value For Money
The BenQ SW2700PT is available for £545/$817 including VAT on its own, or £699/$1,048 including VATwith the i1 Display Pro calibration device (which is normally around £170/$255 on its own), so you get a good discount with the i1 Display Pro. The BenQ SW2700PT is exclusively distributed by XP Distribution in the UK, Poland, France, Spain and the Nordics. Alternatives include theEIZO CG277, with built-in colour calibration, available for around £1,500/$2,250 including VAT with a 5-year warranty. Another alternative would be the NEC MultiSync PA272W for around £950/$1,425 including VAT, but lacking a calibration device.
|Screen Size (Diagonal)||27inches|
|Device Type||Flat-panel LCD/TFT|
|TFT Technology||AHVA IPS|
|Resolution||1440Pixels – 2560Pixels|
|Dot Pitch / Pixel Pitch||0.233mm|
|Image Contrast Ratio (Max)||1000:1|
|Built in Speakers||No|
|USB Hub Built In||
|Power Consumption (W)||0.3 – 36.7|
|Box Contents||No Data|
The BenQ SW2700PT is an impressive monitor, with the ability to produce 100% AdobeRGB, and the display is extremely sharp and crisp. The colour, contrast and saturation are all excellent, however, the consistency across the screen does not quite match the consistency available with more expensive monitors. However, considering this monitor is available for £550/$825, it offers excellent value for money, and you’d need to spend nearer to £1,000/$1,500 to get a better consistency. The resolution is very good at 2560×1440, with a higher resolution likely to be more difficult to use without increasing font size.
The monitor is well designed, and the remote control makes it easier and quicker to change settings, and the built-in USB3 hub with SD card reader is an excellent addition. The monitor and hood are ergonomically designed, with a stand that gives a reasonable range of adjustments, including the ability to swivel the screen into portrait orientation. Colour performance is very good, and the accuracy of black and white values are excellent, the monitor should be good enough to satisfy most photographers, designers and graphic artists with 100% of Adobe RGB being covered.