NEC MultiSync LCD 2110 XtraView
Author: David Pitlyuk
Date Posted: May 1st, 2002
SLRating: SLRating: 7/10
Bottom Line: A huge monitor which is definitely nice, but it does have a couple flaws...Plus there is no DVI support.
http://www.slcentral.com/c/h/r/speeze/copperhs

Introduction

This is our first official monitor review, and what a monitor we chose to do the review on. The NEC MultiSync LCD 2110 XtraView is a 21.3" (measured diagonally) LCD monitor. The monitor currently retails for about $3,800 which is quite a hefty price tag, but we managed to find it online for around $3,500. While the price does seem steep, LCD prices have come down quite a bit as the monitor originally had a $6,000 price tag on it back in September of 2001. As more and more larger sized LCD screens start coming out, we hope to see the price of the 2110 come down even more as even the 22" Apple Studio Displays are priced around $2,500, and the 23" at $3,500.

Why don't we just delve right into the review.

Specs


 
 
LCD Module: 21.3-inch (21.3" viewable image size),
active matrix, thin film transistor
(TFT), liquid crystal display (LCD),
0.27 mm dot pitch, XtraView® technology,
RGB vertical stripe color filter
arrangement, 200 cd/m2 white luminance
typical, 300:1 contrast ratio - typical

Input Video Signal: ANALOG 0.7 Vp-p / 75 Ohms Positive

Sync: Separate sync:    TTL level Positive/Negative
Composite sync:   TTL level, Positive/Negative
Sync on Green:    Video 0.3 Vp-p Negative 0.7Vp-p positive

Display Colors: Analog Input:  Unlimited Colors

(Dependent upon display card used)

Synchronization Range (Automatically): Horizontal:  24.0 kHz to 82.0 kHz
Vertical:    56.0 Hz  to 76.0 Hz

Resolutions Supported: Landscape:
 720 x  400  @ 70 Hz
 640 x  480  @ 60 Hz to 76 Hz
 800 x  600* @ 56 Hz to 76 Hz
 832 x  624* @ 75 Hz
1024 x  768* @ 60 Hz to 76 Hz
1280 x  960  @ 60 Hz to 76 Hz
1280 x 1024  @ 60 Hz to 76 Hz
1600 x 1200  @ 60 Hz

Portrait:
 480 x  640  @ 60 Hz to 76 Hz
 600 x  800* @ 56 Hz to 76 Hz
 624 x  832* @ 75 Hz
 768 x 1024* @ 60 Hz to 76 Hz
 960 x 1280  @ 60 Hz to 76 Hz
1024 x 1280  @ 60 Hz to 76 Hz
1200 x 1600  @ 60 Hz

*Due to the interpolation necessary for
operation of LCD panel resolutions at
full screen, it is recommended that LCD
monitors utilize the full resolution
capability of the panel and are operated
at their optimal or maximum resolution
when text or fine lines are being viewed.

NOTE:  Some systems may not support all modes listed.

Recommended Resolution: Landscape:  1600 x 1200 @ 60 Hz
Portrait:   1200 x 1600 @ 60 Hz

Dimensions: Net Landscape (with stand):
19.6 in (W) x 19.7 in (H) x 9.7 in (D)
498  mm (W) x 501  mm (H) x 246  mm (D)

Net Landscape (without stand):
19.6 in (W) x 16.5 in (H) x 4.0 in (D)
498  mm (W) x 418  mm (H) x 101  mm (D)

Net Portrait (with stand):
16.5 in (W) x 21.3 in (H) x 9.7 in (D)
418  mm (W) x 541  mm (H) x 246  mm (D)

Height Adjustment:  3.1 in / 80 mm

Gross:
24.5 in (W) x 24.9 in (H) x 13.3 in (D)
622 mm  (W) x 633  mm (H) x 339  mm (D)

Active Display Area: Landscape:
   Horizontal:  17.0 inches / 432 mm
   Vertical:    12.8 inches / 324 mm
   Diagonal:    21.3 inches / 540 mm

(Dependent upon signal timing used)

Power Supply: AC 100-120V / 220-240V worldwide input @ 50/60 Hz

Current Rating: 0.9A @ 100 - 120V / 0.5A @ 220 - 240V

Signal Cable: 15-pin mini D-SUB male to 5-branched BNC male

Viewing angle: Left/Right:  +/- 85°
Up:              85°
Down:            85°

Weight: Net (with stand):       23.1 lb / 10.5 kg
Net (without stand):    15.7 lb / 7.1 kg
Gross:  32.0 lb / 14.5 kg

Operating Temperature: +41° F to +95° F / +5° C to +35° C

Operating Humidity Range: 30% to 80%

Operating Altitude: 0 to 10,000 Feet

Storage Temperature: +14° F to +140° F / -10° C to +60° C

Storage Humidity Range: 10% to 85%

Storage Altitude: 0 to 45,000 Feet


General
 
Limited Warranty: 3-Year Parts and Labor, 3-Year backlight

Power Management: VESA DPMS, EPA Energy Star

User Controls: Power, Brightness, Contrast, Vertical
and Horizontal Position, Auto Adjust,
Image Adjust, AccuColor® Control System,
OSM™ Lock Out, OSM Horizontal Position,
All Reset, Horizontal Size, Fine

Regulatory Approvals: UL/C-UL or CSA, TUV/GS, CE, FCC Rules Part 15
Class B, Canadian DOC, TUV/ERGONOMIE, MPRII, TCO '99,
Ctick, VCCI Class B

Plug and Play: VESA DDC1, DDC2B

A couple of things to take a look at here. The contrast ratio on an average LCD monitor is 200:1, the LCD 2110 is capable of outputting 300:1 so it can get much brighter. Also note that while there are many resolutions supported, the only one in which the image looks really good is at 1600x1200 so we would definitely recommend setting your display at that. We're glad that the 1600x1200 resolution was supported on such a large monitor, as many LCD's have a maximum resolution of 1024x768. This also helps applications that are mainly used with this monitor (graphic designers, hospitals, etc) view more data in one screen.

Features

NuCycle Plastic: A special silicone compound for PC resin, being extremely flame-retardant, safe and environmentally friendly.

XtraView Wide Viewing Angle Technology: Allows the user to be able to see the monitor from any angle (170 degrees) from any orientation - Portrait or Landscape. Provides full 170 degrees viewing angles from either up, down, left or right.

Analog Advantage: Capable of displaying unlimited colors in a continuous spectrum, providing a truer representation of color. The monitor's high contrast LCD enhances color vibrancy and improves focus with no geometric distortion.

Wider Compatibility: Because the MultiSync LCD monitor is analog through and through, it does not require special analog to digital display or interface cords but can accept RGB input directly.

Reduced Footprint: Provides the ideal solution for environments requiring a superior image quality but with size and weight limitations. The monitor's small footpring and low weight allow it to be moved or transported easily from one location to another.

AccuColor Control System: Allows you to adjust the colors on your screen and customize the color accuracy of your monitor to a variety of standards.

OSM (On-Screen Manager) Controls: Allow you to quickly and easily adjust all elements of your screen image via simple to use on-screen menus.

ErgoDesign Features: Enhance human ergonomics to improve the working environment, protect the health of the user and save money. Examples include OSM controls for quick and easy image adjustments, tilt/swivel pivot stand for preferred angle of viewing, small footprint and compliance with MPRII guidelines for lower emissions.

Plug and Play: The Microsoft solution with the Windows 95/98 operating system facilitates setup and installation by allowing the monitor to send it capabilities (such as screen size and resolutions supported) directly to your computer, automatically optimizing display performance.

IPM (Intelligent Power Manager) System: Provides innovative power-saving methods that allow the monitor to shift to a lower power consumption level when on but not in use, saving two-thirds of your monitor energy costs, reducing emissions and lowering the air conditioning costs of the workplace.

Multiple Frequency Technology: Automatically adjusts monitor to the display card's scanning frequency, thus displaying the resolution required up to 160x1200.

FullScan Capability: Allows you to use the entire screen area in most resolutions, significantly expanding image size.

VESA Standard Mounting Interface: Allows users to connect their MultiSync monitor to any VESA standard third party mounting arm or bracket. Allows for the monitor to be mounted on a wall or an arm using any third party compliant device.

BNC/D-SUB: Offers dual inputs, allowing you to connect the monitor to one system via a BNC cable and another system via a standard D-SUB cable. You can easily switch between computers with a touch of a button on the up-front control panel.

The Monitor

Lets first discuss the design of the monitor. The monitor is the normal beige color, unlike most of NEC's other LCD's, there is no black option. The actual display has a widescreen format which is very nice for portrait mode. You have the option of either using the stand that is provided with the monitor or taking it off and attaching it on the wall or an arm via any third party compliant device.

We used the stand, which we found to work really well. First off, you have a lot of space underneath the monitor to put stuff. While this seems like a really small thing to worry about, it really does make a difference. The monitor essentially takes up practically no space at all, one of the major benefits to and LCD.

On the bottom of the stand there is also a wheel which allows you to move the monitor in a 360 degree motion very easily:

The stand also allows you to do things like change the rotation of the monitor to portrait mode:

Aside from that, you can move the monitor up and down, the stand allows you to go pretty high up, and also as low as almost touching the base:

The controls are pretty easy to use, but one of the best features was the auto setup which basically did all the settings automatically. I have another LCD here that has the same feature but it does not work all that well in terms of the color, brightness, and contrast. Aside from setting the screen perfectly to the edges, everything else was absolutely flawless, and the picture was crisp from the get go.

The back of the monitor attaches all the wires very cleanly by having a cover which hides the wires we have all come to hate.

XtraView & Portrait Mode

If you're like me, you were probably too lazy to read the features page to see the feature called XtraView. If you didn't read it, here's a re-cap:

XtraView Wide Viewing Angle Technology: Allows the user to be able to see the monitor from any angle (170 degrees) from any orientation - Portrait or Landscape. Provides full 170 degrees viewing angles from either up, down, left or right.

Basically a lot of LCD screens have this problem of not being able to see what's on the screen at any angles other then straight…You've probably had this problem when using a laptop. XtraView technology changes all this…I could see the entire screens contents at any angle I looked at. Check out these shots below:

Portrait mode is a feature that I found very useful with the 2110 because of the wide screen it has. Check out how tall the monitor is when put in portrait mode:

Portrait mode is enabled through a software called Pivot Pro which is bundled with the monitor (the software by itself costs about $50). The machine we tested the 2110 was running Microsoft Windows XP Professional, and the version of Pivot Pro NEC provided with us did not work. Fortunately a quick look at the Pivot Pro website enabled us to download a free upgrade of the software and we had no problems afterwards. The software is really great and works easily. You can pivot your screen by doing one of the three things:

  • Clicking the icon in the taskbar
  • Right clicking the desktop
  • Holding down Ctrl+Shift+R

Here's a couple screenshots of the menu's from the software:

A Couple Of Problems

We did have two main issues with the monitor, one of which we have already mentioned…The price. We hope to see the price come down a bit, but then again, if you are interested in purchasing a monitor like this, definitely be prepared to spend a good amount.

The second issue we had was a few dead pixels in the display. Most of the time the pixels aren't noticeable, but when you start having a solid dark (especially black) display on the monitor, you will start to notice them. I tried my best to capture them, but couldn't show the entire screen without even being able to see them, so instead a zoomed in on a section of the monitor:

Like I said, these are barely noticeable, in fact I can't even find one right now while typing this in Word. We hope that NEC ships brand new monitors with no dead pixels, but we had to mention it in this review because we did experience this.

The last issue we had was that the display looked perfect at 1600x1200, but if you scale down to any other resolution everything started to look pretty bad. Text was very dithered and image quality just came down big time. While at this size, you should be running at least a 1600x1200 resolution, it would be nice to have some lower options without having to compromise quality.

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Huge
  • Crisp color
  • Auto setup
  • Pivot technology
  • XtraView technology rocks
  • Doesn't take up much space

Cons

  • Hefty price tag
  • Some dead pixels
  • Image degrades below 1600x1200
  • No DVI connection

Conclusion

The size of this monitor is monstrous, but so is the price. Aside from the few dead pixels and the fact that image quality wasn't too great at anything below 1600x1200, we loved every aspect of the display. The image and color was crisp and brightness was beyond what we needed. The portrait mode was great because of the wide screen, and the software that was bundled was a perfect selection. We also loved XtraView technology as we had none of the problems that many LCDs in the past have encountered with view ability from all angles.

If your budget can afford this beauty, we would definitely recommend it…I know we are going to hate to send it back to NEC!

SLRating: 7/10