The Flatron 29EA93-P is LG's first entry into the still young category of ultra-wide consumer displays. There are only a few options left to assert yourself against the expansive 21: 9 aspect ratio of the 29EA93 (16: 9 is typical). However, LG, Dell, and a few others supposedly believe that there is a market for ultra-wides, and I'll admit – I think they're right.
While the 29EA93 seems suitable for watching movies, how does it perform with other types of computer use? Could it possibly be a worthy replacement for your trusted dual monitor setup? Does the display's quality, features, and novelty justify the street price of $ 699? These are some of the questions I will examine.
When 4: 3 displays (e.g. 1600 x 1200) gave way to 16:10 screens (e.g. 1920 x 1200) the event was schismatic about consumer preference. Professionals sometimes preferred the aging 4: 3 standard for its potentially superior vertical real estate – a particularly useful thing for vertically organized content like word processors and websites. In the meantime, gamers, videophiles, and most other consumers have been seduced by the benefits of wider displays as they are perfect for watching movies and monitoring your peripherals in FPS games.
However, when 16: 9 (e.g. 1920×1080) hit the market, computer-conscious consumers scratched their collective noggins. The initial switch to widescreen had already constrained vertical real estate. So why should it be further restricted? The rapid adoption of HD standards (720p and 1080p) is largely to blame, as manufacturers built their displays according to HD video standards. To the chagrin of some, 16: 9 is now by far the most ubiquitous widescreen format.
That understanding brings us back to the 29EA93. With its really extremely wide aspect ratio of 21: 9, LG delivers 2560 x 1080 pixels in a 29-inch housing. It's an impressively wide display – but obviously not wide enough to completely replace two side-by-side 1080p (16: 9) monitors. Then why should a company agree on a seemingly arbitrary aspect ratio of 21: 9? The short answer is: movies.
For movies, 16: 9 was a very popular aspect ratio. Meanwhile, 720p-based and 1080p (16: 9) displays have seen their older 4: 3 predecessor endangered. These days, Panavision-inspired cameramen put out films with ARs north of 2.35: 1 (i.e. 21.51: 9). This makes 21: 9 just the thing for watching super wide movies without the need for visual tricks like cropping, letterboxing or anamorphosis. In theory (and in practice as it turns out) the 29EA93 is perfect for watching HD movies.
Processing quality, aesthetics
While unpacking and setting up our 29EA93, I developed a positive opinion about its build quality. It is clear that LG spent time looking after the physical details. The result is an attractive, solid product with a reassuring (but hopefully unnecessary) three-year warranty.
The chrome-like finish on the base is made of plastic. However, the entire stand is solid and rigid. The stand does not lock into place, but is screwed into the frame of the monitor. By the way, have your Phillips screwdriver ready.
For those who prefer to mount their monitor on the wall or elsewhere, the 29EA93 are just the thing. The display has mounting holes for VESA MIS-D (100 mm).
The inclusion of a power brick may be unwanted news to some, but I think it's a nice touch in terms of quality. Keep the following in mind: It is much easier to swap out an external power supply than an internal one. If the Power Brick ever fails, this is a quick and inexpensive solution. It shows that LG is thinking. Alternatively, Dell, HP and Asus are well-known brands that have opted for internal power supplies for their high-end monitor offerings. Just one more thing to consider.
The packaging contained a double DVI-D cable, an MHL cable (for tablets, smartphones), a 3.5 mm audio cable and an A-B USB 3.0 cable. the above power adapter and cable. The box mainly lacks HDMI and DisplayPort cables.
The 29EA93 has a variety of ports without VGA. The inputs found on the monitor include: 1 x DisplayPort, 1 x HDMI, 1 x HDMI / MHL, 1 x DVI-D, 3 x USB 3.0 inputs, and a socket for 3.5mm audio. For the outputs we have 1 x USB 3.0 and a single 3.5 mm audio (headphone jack). I'm not used to seeing high-end monitors without a VGA connector, but it's certainly a forgivable omission these days.
These three USB 3.0 inputs act as a USB 3.0 hub, which is always a welcome addition.
The connections are countersunk at the back and allow a practical 90-degree cable insertion. There is no need to turn the monitor or remove covers to access the ports
The control elements of the 29EA93 are touch sensitive and are located on the lower right under the front panel. There are buttons for OSD (on-screen display) menu, volume up / down, selection, and power.
While monitor OSDs tend to be terrible, this Flatron offers a refreshing OSD: it's intuitive, full of fine-tuning, and even has a polished look. In the OSD you will find a variety of options and functions, including picture-in-picture, 6-color calibration, automatic color calibration (in conjunction with compatible hardware), selection of the aspect ratio and a power LED switch. The OSD of the 29EA93 also contains functions for adjusting the black level and response times (more on this later).
As expected, the 29EA93's built-in pairs of speakers are essentially free of bass and heat. Despite the lack of audio fidelity, the 29EA93 gets relatively loud. While the built-in speakers don't create scintillating highs or rumbling lows, the sound they create is easy to hear throughout the room. A separate set of speakers is required for anything beyond office work.