The maximum brightness is 260 nits, which is somewhat lower than the range of 300-400nits specified by Zalman. The Max column shows why changing the brightness of the screen with the matrix is bad: black becomes gray and the contrast ratio drops to a funny value. The User column shows the brightness and contrast ratio values I obtained when I had set the monitor up manually (as described above) for more accurate color reproduction.
Besides the manual settings, the monitor offers five preset modes you can select with the MWE button without entering the onscreen menu.
The modes all have a similar level of white but I have to say that you need a brightness of 80-100 nits, not 200 nits and higher, for working with text. The level of black is too high in the Movie and Smooth modes, affecting the contrast ratio negatively.
Let’s check out color reproduction in these modes, too.
The gamma curves are no different in the Text mode than at the monitor’s default settings.
The Game mode lacks lights and has oversaturated green. The resulting picture is bright and vivid but has nothing to do with accurate color reproduction.
The Movie mode is even worse: about one third of all greens are lost. You are likely to see a green smudge instead of a green field in movies. And there will be fuzzy spots in the sky instead of cirrus clouds. Besides, the contrast ratio is very low in this mode while darks become light and whitish.
Blue is the only color that is displayed properly in the Sports mode. Red and green reach the top of the diagram too soon, betraying the loss of light halftones.
The Smooth mode is hardly any different than Movie. It has whitish darks and oversaturated lights. Clouds become white smudges, and grass is a green smudge, etc.
So, the factory-set modes of the ZM-M220W are impractical as they distort color reproduction greatly. I guess you may want to set the monitor up manually for text-based applications (lowering its Contrast to 20-30% depending on the ambient lighting and keeping the Brightness setting intact). And if you need a higher brightness in games or movies, you can switch into the Text mode.
The monitor’s response time isn’t impressive: an average of 14.0 milliseconds (GtG) with a maximum of 21.5 milliseconds. This is a normal speed for a TN matrix without response time compensation but it is too slow in comparison with RTC-enabled matrixes.
Talking about the ZM-M220W in the ordinary 2D mode, it has rather mediocre setup quality. Besides, it has two technological drawbacks: the conspicuous inter-pixel horizontal lines and the locking of the color temperature setting for DVI connection.