LG E93 monitor review: is wider better?

Does it provide a unique advantage, or is it more a gimmick?

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Introduction

The 16:9 aspect ratio is no longer that unusual, both for computer monitors and for TVs. While there are still a select few computer users that loyally adhere to 16:10 screens, the majority of displays on the market are 1.78:1 or 16:9. There's more, however. At the IFA fair in September 2012 LG announced a monitor with a 21:9 aspect ratio. This imposing 29-inch screen reached our doorstep recently, and we put it though the usual series of tests. So what's the point of such a wide screen?


There is a reason why 16:9 is so omni-present, it basically corresponds to the 1.78:1 aspect ratio used for HDTV broadcasts and many movies. In the world of computers 16:10 was briefly the standard, but that has since been replaced by 16:9 panels. These support Full HD resolution, and from a manufacturing standpoint you can get many more 16:9 panels from a glass wafer than you can 16:10 panels.

For televisions 16:9 has been the dominant aspect ratio. There are a few outside of Europe, but we're ignoring those for this article. The one notable exception are the Philips 56-inch 21:9 TVs. Hardware.Info tested a number of these, and concluded at the time that the new format is great for super-widescreen movies with 2.4:1 aspect ratio, but also not very efficient for conventional broadcasts.

LG now has a monitor with the 21:9 aspect ratio. The EA93, or 29EA93-P as the entire product designation reads, has a screen of 29 inches (73.66 cm) and a resolution of 2560x1080 pixels. Those mathematically inclined will notice that this is two times 1280x1080, a resolution that comes close to the 1280x1024 5:4 aspect ration of the early 17-inch and 19-inch TFT monitors. You basically get two of those almost-square screens next to each other, without a bezel between them.

This can be useful for a number of applications. Take very large Excel spreadsheets, for example, but also video editing with multiple windows, photo editing, and of course gaming.

With a price of £415 the EA93 is not a cheap monitor. So if you're purely interested in lots of pixels, then a better option is a WQHD monitor with 2560x1440 pixels, such as the Dell U2713HM and the ASUS PB278Q. LG recently launched its won WQHD model, the EA83, but this is a wide gamut display that can reproduce 99 percent of the AdobeRGB spectrum and therefore carries a hefty price tag reportedly around £600. The EA93 is certainly unique on paper, but how does it actually perform? Read on to find out.

LG 29EA93-P


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