Editor's note: The EX231WP-BK has been replaced by the E231W-BK. Clicking the Buy button will take you to this new model for purchase. We will evaluate, rank and review the NEC EX231W-BK when we next update the Monitor reviews. Meanwhile, enjoy our review below about the NEC EX231WP-BK.
The NEC Corporation started over a hundred years ago. They are one of the oldest and most successful businesses in the world of information technology and electronics. They began with the production of telephones and soon added other household appliances and cables. After dipping into nearly every area of electronics possible over their first 80 years, they finally got into what they are more currently well known for, computers. During this time, displays and computers were a single piece of equipment. When the split came about some years later, NEC continued to manufacture both.
The NEC EX231WP-BK is one of their newest LCD monitors. It utilizes PVA (Patterned Vertical Alignment) panel technology, which offers greater color reproduction and wider viewing angels than TN (Twisted Nematic) panels. This panel technology, along with LED backlighting, provides high contrast ratios. This 23-inch beauty has a sleek and simple design that fits well with any office decor. The OSD controls are all touch sensitive and integrated right into the black bezel. Unfortunately, the response time on the NEC EX231WP-BK is notably slower than it is on most other monitors.
PVA technology gives the NEC EX231WP-BK a vertical and horizontal viewing angle of 178 degrees. However, you will notice a reduction of color quality as you move away from looking at the monitor's screen from a perfectly centered position. That is the reason that vertical alignment panels have taken a back seat to the superior IPS (In-plane Switching) panels. However, if you are only minimally off centered, this LCD monitor provides an excellent picture. The 3,000:1 typical contrast ratio is triple what most TN and IPS panels provide, helping the color on this full HD 1080p monitor to be vivid.
The biggest flaw of the NEC EX231WP-BK monitor is the response time. The response time on modern monitors, averages around five milliseconds, fluctuating from two to eight milliseconds, but that is not the case here. This display has a much longer response time of 25 milliseconds, which makes it five times slower than its competition. With office work, you may not be affected by this, but if you throw in a movie or play a video game with movement and action scenes, you will probably notice the images blurring.
The design of the stand makes the NEC EX231WP-BK flexible to your viewing preferences. It includes the option to adjust the height, swivel, tilt and even pivot. This level of adjustability allows you to get the monitor to a comfortable viewing position. In addition, it allows you to rotate the screen to a vertical position, which some prefer for reading, writing and web browsing.
The NEC EX231WP-BK monitor comes with a DVI and a DisplayPort connection. Both are HDCP (High-bandwidth Digital Content Protection) compliant. If your video card does not have a DisplayPort or DVI connection, there are converters that will give you access to HDMI and VGA. There is also an upstream USB port that allows you to use the USB port located on the top of the monitor. This single USB hub is useful is if you have a peripheral (mouse, keyboard, webcam, etc.) that will not reach your computer.
NEC provides a sound support system for this monitor that covers everything you need. If you have any concerns, they have online documentation and FAQs about the NEC EX231WP-BK that will address most of them. For further support, you can contact NEC via phone, email or chat. Note that this monitor comes with a three-year warranty to cover any manufacturer defects.
The slow response time does call into question this monitor's ability to be good for gaming or home theater use, but aside from that, the specs speak in favor of the NEC EX231WP-BK as a great LCD monitor. The color reproduction and high contrast ratio makes the viewing experience vivid. The adjustability adds a great deal of flexibility and makes it an excellent choice for vertical position usage.
The PVA panel technology allows for wide viewing angles and high contrast ratio.
The response time is much slower than any of the competition.
The slow response times may detract from action sequences in your video media, which makes it more ideal for business than for movies or gaming.