Once Apple announced it was no longer making its Thunderbolt Display, NEC contacted AppleWorld.Today to let us know that — hint, hint — its MultSync+EA275UHD is a fine replacement. They sent us a test unit, so here are my impressions.
Is the NEC display a suitable replacement for Apple’s monitor? Yep, considering its $300 cheaper ($699 compared to $999 for the outdated Thunderbolt Display). However, the design isn’t as elegant as an Apple display, and the screen, while crisp and sharp, pales in comparison to the screen of the 5K iMac with Retina Display (which is the display I have to compare all others to).
Still, the NEC is no slouch by any means. It’s a 4K UHD, 27-inch, 3840 x 2160 widescreen LED-backlit LCD for folks who need (or want) a huge workspace at a readable PPI. PPI, or pixel density, refers to the concentration of pixels on a display, measured in pixels per inch (ppi). Pixel density is calculated by dividing the diagonal pixel resolution of a display by its diagonal size.
The NEC monitor boasts IPS panel technology with wide viewing angles (178° horizontal/vertical) and ergonomic adjustability. IPS enhanced panels offer improved angle and color technology features that provide an overall better user experience. Creative professionals also benefit from an IPS monitor because an IPS LCD that provides a wider color gamut and greater viewing angles help achieve better aesthetic accuracy and superior results.
The NEC monitor also touts a height-adjustable stand (130mm) and full connectivity with DisplayPort, HDMI and DVI-D inputs. These are handy, but it would have been great for Mac users if there were also USB-C and/or Thunderbolt ports, so we wouldn’t need adapters.
The EA275UHD includes touch-sensitive on screen display controls, a picture by picture (PBP) mode for two inputs onscreen at the same time, streamlined cable management and ControlSync technology that allows users to control up to six units in a multi-monitor configuration.
The NEC monitor provides rich, accurate colors (though it lacks advanced color adjustments), dark blacks, and wide viewing angles. It’s a solid display for Mac users, even if it does lack the pizazz of Apple-made monitors.