BenQ SW2700PT; An In-Depth Review

Few years ago when photographers search for computer monitors for their photo editing and manipulation needs, they opt for professional monitors with excellent color accuracy, wide color gamut and calibration features. While these are the essential aspects to look for, most professional monitors before were not really tailor-made for photographers, rather, they’re one-size-fits-all solutions for artists, graphic designers, photographers, or anyone who demands excellent colour accuracy for their specific tasks. The BenQ SW2700PT promises to be the solution for professional photographers, especially in their photo processing needs. But what makes this display special? Check out this in-depth review from Dual Monitors Guide.

BenQ SW2700PT (image from Amazon)


Who is it for?

BenQ SW2700PT is especially made for media professionals, professional photographers or even photography enthusiasts, to take full control of their photo manipulation. It has excellent color accuracy, wide range of colors and a good combination of controls needed to calibrate the display, not to mention it comes packed with photo-centric features.

 

Benefits

BenQ SW2700PT (image from Amazon)


While some brands are content in offering features such as adaptive refresh technology or 1ms response time, some brands out there are more inclined to make monitors for specific use, such as the BenQ SW2700PTwhich is pretty much dedicated for media professionals. In terms of performance, the BenQ SW2700PT is nothing short of amazing, as it offers excellent color accuracy, deep contrast and packed with photography-centric features and media presets.

This monitor runs at QHD resolution or 2560x1440p resolution, a step higher than the standard Full HD.

 

Excellent Color Accuracy and Grayscale Performance for More Vibrant Colors and Sharper Images

For its color accuracy, chromaticity test shows all colors (red, green and blue) are all perfectly aligned to their ideal CIE coordinates, which means excellent color accuracy right out of the box. This colour accuracy is pretty prevalent even in watching action packed movies such as Marvel's Avengers: Age Of Ultron on Blu-ray. Also, the monitor’s ability to show deeper blacks provides excellent dark background for images, giving more punch to each color being shown.

BenQ SW2700PT (image from Amazon)


For its grayscale performance, BenQ SW2700PT also has no trouble showing each and every shade of gray. DisplayMate 64-Step gray-scale test shows this monitor delivers superb shadow details and with sharp lighting.

 

Superb Image Quality, Even Without Calibration

BenQ said their SW2700PT can reach up to 99% AdobeRGB spectrum, but test shows it only reaches 93%, which is still impressively high. Many monitors out there claim to have 100% AdobeRGB, but they can hardly reach close to 98% in real tests.

 In terms of brightness, this BenQ monitor can reach up to 382 lux when turned all the way up, putting this screen as one of the brightest monitors in the market today. The contrast is equally impressive, as it scores 780:1 ratio at full brightness level.

Gamma is a little off, as sets at 2.3 at 2.2 setting, not far enough to cause major difference in both images and videos though.

 

Excellent Viewing Angles

AHVA panel is described as similar to IPS, which means it has excellent viewing angles. Colors or images remain true, as colors don’t suffer from luminance loss, even when viewed from top, bottom and extreme side angles.

 

Fast Pixel Response and Input Lag for Both Gaming and Movies

Though the BenQ SW2700PT is not really made for gaming, BenQ made sure it is versatile enough to work with professional photographers who love to play video games on their free time. The 5ms (gray-to-gray) pixel response allows this display to deliver games smoothly, with minimal sign of ghosting.

The Input Lag of this monitor is at 9.5ms (the amount of time it takes for the monitor to recognize and react to the command of the controller, measured by Leo Bodnar Visual Signal Tester) even matches the Input Lag of BenQ XL2430T, which is an excellent gaming monitor itself. 

Dual Monitor and Multiple Monitor Setup

 

Professional users can really benefit from monitor stands or mounts with more flexible and ergonomic adjustments, but unfortunately, there aren't a lot of options for 27-inch-sized monitors or bigger, out there. The couple of good options however, is the Ergotron LX Dual  side-by-side arm and AmazonBasics dual side-by-side monitor arm.

Ergotron LX Dual  side-by-side arm (image from Amazon)


Ergotron LX Dual  side-by-side arm is a high-end monitor stand with two fully-articulating and independently-adjustable arms. It is made with solid polished aluminum construction and high quality materials. It can supports two 27-inch displays and both arms can be adjusted independently, allowing users to reposition their display; up, down, forward and back, with one simple touch, and still keep the displays secured and stable in place through the help of its patented Constant Force (CF) technology.

AmazonBasics dual side-by-side monitor arm (image from Amazon)


AmazonBasics dual side-by-side monitor arm on the other hand, is the more practical and affordable choice. They look very similar, which gives you an idea where Amazon took its inspiration from.  It comes equipped with two fully-adjustable monitor arms, both can be adjusted independently, allowing users to position their display to the most ergonomic setup. It is built with quite sturdy construction, and its matte-black finish actually make it look better than in photos online.


Design and Features

BenQ SW2700PT (image from Amazon)


The BenQ SW2700PT runs 2560x1440p resolution (WQHD) in its 27 inch AHVA (Advanced Hyper-Viewing Angle) panel screen. AHVA is very similar to IPS (In-Plane Switching) panel, which offers the best performance when it comes to producing rich and accurate colors and wide viewing angles.

Design wise, there is nothing fancy about this BenQ monitor, it sports a plain matte-black cabinet with 0.75-inch bezels. The side bezels come with removable clips which are used to attach the shading hood. The cabinet itself feels weighty and well-built, panels are tightly sealed, while the textured dark gray plastic is a nice change from the usual glossy black most monitors use. It adds to the overall professional look of the cabinet.

The semi-gloss screen helps reduce glares and reflections, which is crucial for professional users.

 

Buttons and Functions

There are five function buttons in this monitor, along with a Power Switch and a power LED located under the lower bezel. Function buttons provide access to a generous set of selection settings. The buttons are not labeled, which can be confusing at first. But once you know which is which, it’s easy to use.

BenQ SW2700PT (image from Amazon)


Aside from the basic choices like Brightness, Contrast and Sharpness, there are 10 Color mode settings which include the standard sRGB, Adobe RGB, Photo, Black & White and Low Blue Light, which is a very helpful setting to reduce eyestrain.

For calibration, there are two settings to choose from and another two user-defined settings. Color Temperature presets includes 5,000K, 6,500K, and 9,300K, plus a user-defined preset.

Users can also fine-tune the monitor through its Hue and Saturation settings, which both uses a slider to adjust the color values of red, green, blue, magenta, cyan, and yellow, as well as the Black Level to bring more pop to the colors, especially in darker areas of the image.

Other settings include customization for three function buttons and three OSD (On-Screen Display) controller buttons, and an option to choose Aspect Ratio.

 

Shading Hood to Eliminate Reflections and Glares Caused by Too Much Lighting

BenQ SW2700PT (image from Amazon)


Package comes with a shading hood, a simple and convenient solution for professional users who wants to eliminate glares and reflections on the screen caused by too much ambient lighting.

 

With 14-bit LUT for More Precise Color Calibration

Also, this display uses 14-bit LUT (Look-Up Table), giving users more freedom for calibration to adjust color settings in monitor processing circuitry, rather than altering the GPU output. The 14-bit LUT also provide better color management for precision color and super smooth color gradation. However, you will need to supply your own colorimeter should you wish to calibrate the color settings, but you can also download BenQ’s proprietary Palette Master Element calibration software to calibrate the display and save your settings as presets.

 

Connectivity Options

BenQ XL2430T comes with one of every port you need. There’s one DisplayPort input (no daisy-chaining multiple monitor), an HDMI and DVI port, and two USB 3.0 ports. There is also an SD card reader on the side of the panel, quite a convenient feature for photographers who will plug in their camera’s SD card.

 

Rectangular Stand with Complete Range of Adjustment

BenQ managed to avoid one of the most common pitfalls monitors fail by accompanying BenQ XL2430T with a large, stable and fully adjustable stand. The 27-inch cabinet is supported by a rectangular stand that comes with sliding hinges, which provides 5 inches of height adjustment range, 23.5° tilt, 70° swivel range and rotate 90° to pivot the panel from landscape to portrait mode, and vice versa. The stand also has a round recess to hold the stand’s OSD controller buttons and choose Aspect Ratio.

 

Tech Specs

Package includes the shade hood, DisplayPort, DVI, and USB cables, a Quick Start Guide, User Guide, a resource CD containing drivers and the OSD Controller.

 

Bottom Line

We all know computer monitors can’t be everything for everyone, no matter how hard some of them try. BenQ undoubtedly leave some gamers and casual users behind, as they focus on professionals or anyone looking for top-notch display when it comes to color and image performance. For its price however, BenQ SW2700PT offers excellent performance that even gamers and casual users will love. It has good all-around function, but its focus is on the professionals.

If there’s anything this monitor can improve, BenQ can simply add HDMI 2.0 ports, and may be an ECO mode to bring its power consumption down for non-graphic-centric tasks.

All in all, this monitor is a great but for any graphic professional, especially photographers. With SW2700PT, you get all the features you usually see from high-end monitors, such as advanced color setting, excellent color accuracy and grayscale right out of the box, wide color gamut, hardware calibration and the 14-bit LUT. All of these for a very reasonable price.

It also comes with some graphic-centric features and add-ons, adding more convenience to any media professional or professional photographer’s workstation.

For more in-depth reviews like this, check out Dual Monitors Guide today!



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