Once in use the HP gave a good first impression. Before even tweaking the settings it is very pleasant to look at, producing excellent colours, deep blacks and a generally warm and nicely defined image. Entering the OSD reveals one of the better examples you’ll see. Naturally there are options to control brightness and contrast, while under the ‘Image Control’ menu you can select ‘Custom Scaling’, including an aspect mode to stop the display from scaling a lower resolution input.
Pre-defined colour modes include 9300k, 6500k and sRGB with manual controls available too. As has become common the w2207 also features a number of context based presets, in this case called ‘Quick View’. These include Movie, Photo, Gaming and Text modes, most of which have varying subtle differences that are barely worth mentioning. The exception is the Movie mode, which is only worth mentioning because it should be avoided. As you might expect it ‘boosts’ the black levels, but it goes too far and just destroys any sense of detail or depth. All is not lost though because, as out testing showed, even without this mode the black levels are more than good enough.
Testing began with the traditional set of DisplayMate screens, a program designed to push monitors to the limits of their abilities. Loading up the Dark-Grey Scale test, it’s immediately obvious that the HP is very adept at creating excellent blacks. The 1000:1 Contrast Ratio certainly helps, as does that high contrast glossy finish but it does mean that the display struggles to produce darker greys effectively.
With some tweaking of the brightness and contrast levels it is possible to improve things somewhat, but there’s still some noticeable compression. Much the same can be applied to the White-Level Saturation, though not to the same degree. In any case it ought to be noted that these elements don’t have too great an impact on general use, and for gaming and films erring on the side of blackness is probably beneficial.
Other parts of the tests were well produced. The Colour Scales showed very nice gradual steps in colour all the way to the brightest end of the scale. Dark Screen and Uniformity tests did, however, demonstrate some very minor backlight bleeding from the bottom and top of the display which also resulted in some shading occurring around the extreme edges of the screen. However these problems were once again very minor, with the light bleed in particular being nothing compared to the more obvious problems of the Viewsonic VX2255wmh.