With this being a 3D enabled screen with the Vision glasses, I’ve split this section into two to separate the 2D and 3D side if the screens use as the 2D environment takes up the most part of the VG278H’s use.
When it comes to testing a screen, there are a number of individual factors that every person looks for, I personally look for a crisp bright image, with a real depth of colour (in other words, vibrant reds greens & blues and deep blacks) that doesn’t look washed out when used in a bright environment. At the same time I look for a screen that works not only in a working environment (the environment that my screens spend most of their time) but also for watching movies and gaming.
Testing the working environment is an easy one to start with, by swapping it out for my standard LG LCD and using this for a number of days to see how it feels to work with over an extended period. I’ve found with some screens on the past that they are ok to work with for an hour or so, but any longer and they feel like they are glaring too much. For movie watching, to cover a number of bases with colour vibrant images and fast action scenes I chose a couple of contrasting high definition films, namely Toy Story 3 with its bright crisp colours and Crank: High Voltage for its fast action scenes for the screens refresh rate. Last of all and the bit that I rarely get around to doing was a bit of game play. The game of choice just recently has been Metro 2033 and with its dark scenes, is a good test to see how the black reproduction comes out during use.
Before I go onto the screen performs, I will touch onto something that I did stumble upon (probably because I never read the manual). If you want to get the most out of the screen, which I imagine you will if you have chosen this over anything else, the utilising HDMI for you video input is going to bring you to a quick stop. It appears the HDMI 1.4 interface is not capable of outputting the 120Hz signal required to give the 3D experience from the screen. The best it is able to handle is a mere 24Hz and trying this did strain my eyes and wasn’t an enjoyable experience at all. After looking this up, it was revealed that you need to connect the VG278H via DVI to get the best out of the screen and allow you to push through 120Hz when in 3D. This won’t be an issue for anyone buying as every graphics card out there that can do 3D vision has DVI. Just goes to show that reading the manual from time to time doesn’t hurt!
What becomes immediately apparent when using this over my usual screens, is that the refresh rate really does make a difference on how bright the image is. With the refresh rate set to 120Hz the image appeared to be less vibrant, but dropping to 60Hz made a noticable difference.
Now I’ve played about with what is common ground, now is the bit I’m very much looking forward to, going 3D. To get the best out of the screen, its worth noting that not all games out there are 3D Vision ready (in other works they have not been developed specifically for 3D Vision) but a number of games can still work in 3D to varying degrees. If in doubt, there is a section in the Nvidia control panel that will tell you what level of 3D the game supports. Thankfully my game of choice as of late, Metro 2033 is 3D Vision ready, and is also said to be one of the best to play if you want to experience 3D gaming. I did also chose another game for this section that is not 3D Vision ready, but is said to have ‘excellent’ 3D capability when enabled, namely TrackMania Nations.
If you’ve never played a game in 3D but have been to the cinema to see a 3D film then, expecting the image to come out of the screen in the same way it appears on the big screen is not going to happen. What you actually get is the feel that things come out to a degree, but the image has more depth to it, as though the screen is a hole in a wall that you are looking into the scene through which to me is far better for the mind to handle when playing games as your virtual depth perception is increased to a degree that after a long period of playing you really get the fell that you are there.