NEC MultiSync EA232WMi review

Price when reviewed

NEC’s MultiSync EA232WMi takes the 23in Full-HD panel of its predecessor, the EA231WMi, and adds LED backlighting to the formula.

Otherwise, though, the EA232WMi remains the same as ever. It has a big, beefy stand that smoothly moves up and down by 110mm and allows the screen to swivel around into portrait mode. Even at full extension, it feels stable and planted to the desk.

It has DVI, D-SUB and DisplayPort inputs, a four-port USB hub and a 3.5mm audio input for the 1W stereo speakers, but no HDMI. The built-in speakers are awful, managing to reduce CD-quality music to the kind of low-quality din you’d expect from the worst laptop speakers. Thankfully, the headphone socket on the monitor’s left-hand corner is within easy reach.

Power on the EA232WMi and the first thing you’ll notice is it has its automatic brightness sensor switched on by default. It’s easily disabled, but it’s a neat power saving feature nonetheless: turn off the lights and the brightness slowly drops down from the eye-searing maximum of 280cd/m2 right down to 6cd/m2. Power consumption also drops from 34W to 12W in the process.

NEC MultiSync EA232WMi

Indeed, the main benefit of the change from CCFL to LED backlighting is power consumption: after calibrating the screen to a brightness of 120cd/m2, the EA232WMi drew 19W from the mains – 5W lower than the EA231WMi.

Disappointingly, though, the LED-backlight does nothing to improve image quality. On a black screen, a noticeable glow frames the edges of the screen, and the backlight leaks in from the bottom corners. We happened to have three identical monitors in for a multi-monitor PC setup, and we noted variation in backlight quality between each. One exhibited particularly uneven backlighting and poor black levels, and contrast suffered as a result. Two of the three delivered a measured contrast ratio of 900:1; the other barely achieved 666:1.

Colour accuracy was more consistent across the three samples, however. Our X-Rite i1Display 2 colorimeter measured an average Delta E of 3.1, and a maximum of 5.6. Colour temperature wasn’t far off the ideal 6500k, with a result of 6717k. Gamma also deviated from the ideal of 2.2, though; a measurement of 2.1 in the darker greys rising to a wayward 1.7 in the light greys.

The e-IPS panel of the NEC MultiSync EA232WMi is capable of delivering vivid, vibrant imagery, but at this price we’d expect a more accomplished technical performance. Dell’s UltraSharp U2311H and Viewsonic’s VP2365wb deliver measurably better image quality across the board, and for the same or less money. Unless the power-saving LED backlight and automatic brightness sensors are essential addition, you’re better off looking elsewhere.


Image quality5

Main specifications

Screen size23.0in
Aspect ratio16:9
Resolution1920 x 1080
Screen brightness250cd/m2
Pixel response time14ms
Contrast ratio1,000:1
Dynamic contrast ratio25,000:1
Pixel pitch0.265mm
Horizontal viewing angle178 degrees
Vertical viewing angle178 degrees
Speaker typeStereo
Speaker power ouput1W
TV tunerno
TV tuner typeN/A


DVI inputs1
VGA inputs1
HDMI inputs0
DisplayPort inputs1
Scart inputs0
HDCP supportyes
Upstream USB ports1
USB ports (downstream)4
3.5mm audio input jacks1
Headphone outputyes
Other audio connectorsnone

Accessories supplied

Other cables suppliedVGA
Internal power supplyyes

Power consumption

Peak power consumption34W
Idle power consumption12W

Image adjustments

Brightness control?yes
Contrast control?yes
Colour temperature settings5


Forward tilt angle-5 degrees
Backward tilt angle30 degrees
Swivel angle340 degrees
Height adjustment110mm
Pivot (portrait) mode?yes
Bezel width19mm


Dimensions550 x 220 x 379mm (WDH)

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