EIZO ColorEdge CX240 Review

It’s always good to get a new toy to play with. Unpacking EIZOs new ColorEdge CX240 from it’s box made me feel like it was Christmas already, and unlike that pair of socks from Auntie Mabel it didn’t disappoint.

 

I used the supplied mini-Display Port to Display Port cable to connect the CX240 to my MacBook Pro. It’s good to see that EIZO are now supplying this popular cable with their newer models. I fired up the Mac and was instantly pleased by the image on the CX240. It was crisp and sharp and the colours looked good out of the box. I did quickly turn off Auto EcoView, the feature that automatically adjusts screen brightness based on ambient light. You’d have to do this if you are going to calibrate the CX.

[box type=”info”]There is a free firmware update available from EIZO.com for the CX240 that fixes an issue with connection to Macs via Thunderbolt/Mini-Display Port.[/box]

The ColorEdge CX240 is the first ColorEdge to ship without a hood or ColorNavigator as standard, but both are available as optional extras. The lack of a hood won’t be a big issue to many customers who don’t have light falling onto their monitor from above or the sides. Certainly when I do any image editing I keep the ambient light low by turning off the light or pulling the blind so that the monitor is the dominant light source in the room.

The omission of ColorNavigator as standard is a little more important though because it means that you can’t take advantage of the hardware calibration capabilities of the CX240, and also the built-in self-correction sensor that the CX240 has will only work once a luminance target has been set by ColorNavigator. So I think many customers will end up buying ColorNavigator as well to get the most out of the monitor.

While the colour did looks good out of the box I did of course calibrate and profile the CX. The first solution I used was X-Rite’s i1 Display Pro. Working through the calibration process I found that the monitor shipped very close to my preferred 6500K whitepoint and 120 cd/m2 luminance. Only minor adjustments were necessary using the on screen controls of the EIZO. Using the controls was straightforward, but like most monitor manufacturers the buttons can be hard to see and it felt a little like the scene from The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy where they are trapped in Disaster Area’s stunt ship plunging into a sun and when they press a black button on a black background it lights up in black to tell them not to press it again. Labels for the buttons do appear on the bottom of the screen but it wouldn’t hurt to have the buttons back lit when activated, which they are on the CG246!

I also did calibrations with Spyder4Elite and BasicColor Display. BasicColor supported the full hardware calibration mode. Both gave very good profiles.

The CX240's colour space is a very close match to Adobe RGB.

The CX240’s colour space is a very close match to Adobe RGB.

I then used ColorNavigator to make a profile and of course it supported the full hardware calibration mode and so made the process very much quicker with no manual adjustments to make. During the process of measuring with the i1 Display Pro using ColorNavigator the self-correction sensor popped down from the top of the screen to record the screen brightness. Within ColorNavigator you can set the interval for how often the sensor monitors and adjusts the screen brightness, the default is 50 hours. This should mean that you have to do a full calibration less frequently.

The calibrated image on the ColorEdge CX240 was everything I’ve come to expect from a ColorEdge screen. Truly neutral greys, smooth gradients, accurate colours and detail all the way into the shadows and highlights. The colour space is a good match for Adobe RGB and the uniformity of the screen I was testing was excellent. The image also seemed sharper and more defined compared to the older EIZO I usually have on my desk. As I said in above the best word I can think of is crisp. It’s a great looking display.

[box type=”tick”]Use code 40CX240 at checkout to get £40 off the CX240. Click this link to go to our product listing: CX240.[/box]

All the new ColorEgde range now includes HDMI input, and when I plugged my Apple TV into the CX it had no problem displaying full 1080p HD video. Another new and largely unsung feature of the CX240 is that it has two USB inputs and these can be assigned to different video inputs allow you to switch both video and USB sources if you have more than one computer attached to it. The CX240 also comes with a preset mode that reduces the colour gamut to sRGB to make viewing non-colour managed web and video more pleasing. Un-colour managed content on a wide gamut monitor can appear over saturated otherwise.

I think the ColorEdge CX240 makes an interesting addition to EIZO’s product portfolio. It should allow more customers to afford the quality of a ColorEdge, without making too many compromises. Yes, many will feel the need to also buy ColorNavigator, but given that the CX240 comes with the full five year warranty EIZO are known for it does make it a very safe long term investment in the quality of your images.

Since this blog was written EIZO UK have decided to include ColorNavigator for free with all CX models.

8 Comments

  1. Philip U's Gravatar Philip U
    November 16, 2012    

    Thanks for the review. You write that it looks crisper than the older EIZO you have on your desk. Which one would that be? Any chance you can compare the CX240 to a CG243 – because that one is still available and about the same price range, but a CG instead of a CX model? It doesn’t have the selfcalibration, but it comes with a hood, which for me is quite important.

    Would be awesome if you could elaborate on that. Thanks in advance!

    • November 16, 2012    

      The EIZO I have on my desk is an old CG241. A classic but getting a little out of date now. Choosing between the CG243 and CX240 is tricky but I think the CG243 still has the edge, you get the hood and ColorNavigator and the 243 price has come way down recently. It’s a bargain. I’m sure it would still look crisper than my 241. Unfortunately we don’t have 243 here for me to do a direct comparison.

      I will be doing a blog next week comparing the CG246 and CX240. Use the code 30CG243 to get £30 off the CG243 at checkout. Thanks for reading.

      • Philip U's Gravatar Philip U
        November 17, 2012    

        Thanks for the advice. I’ve indeed ordered the 243 now. I had the chance to see the CX240 in action today. Can’t compare image quality, but the CX240 seems to have a different anti-glare coating. It doesn’t have the fine crystalline structure of the older CGs. That makes for a somewhat nicer, smoother image – especially up close. However, I found that glare was quite a lot stronger and more defined (less blurred) with the new coating. I guess it boils down to personal preference in the end. Maybe – just maybe, I’m totally not sure about that – the black point of the CX might be a bit better.
        Anyways, I got a really good deal for the CG243 at my local dealer, so that’s the one I’m getting. Besides the hood, it also comes with a free copy of Color Navigator.

  2. Alex S's Gravatar Alex S
    December 17, 2012    

    Hello,

    Thank you for the review – the CX240 seems to be an excellent product.
    Something is strange, though; isn’t the Color Navigator available for download, at Eizo’s site?. Are there any limitations with the downloadable software, or am I missing something?

    Best regards,
    Alex

    • admin's Gravatar admin
      December 18, 2012    

      Yes, you can download it but you need the code that comes with the licence pack to use it for a CX or CS monitor. The code gets put into the monitor so that ColorNavigator can be used with that particular screen.

      • Alex S's Gravatar Alex S
        December 18, 2012    

        OK, that makes sense.
        I should note that I couldn’t see the ColorNavigator software for sale, in many other places – kudos to nativedigital for offering this option.

  3. Rune Jensen's Gravatar Rune Jensen
    February 1, 2013    

    What about the dirty/dusty screen? I know the CG243 has this, which is an issue for me, but has Eizo improved this for the new CX og CG models, if you know that?

    • February 4, 2013    

      I assume you are talking about the anti-glare coating rather than a lack of good housecleaning. I’ve never had an issue with ahi-glare coatings. It seems to be something that you notice or you don’t. The new models looked fine to me and I don’t think there has been any great change to the coatings.

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