Eve Spectrum review: less is more

The crowdsourced Eve Spectrum 4K 144Hz gaming monitor has been around for a while now, and it hit the market late last year to generally favorable reviews. I finally got my hands on a test sample, and I have to say, it’s a very nice display. However, it is not without drawbacks. We’ll get into the good, the bad, and the ugly, so buckle up.

Priced at $799, the Spectrum is a premium product. If you add an extra $99 for the admittedly excellent metal stand, you get about $900 total before taxes and shipping. I guess that puts the monitor somewhat in line with other 27-inch 4K gaming displays, and as many PC gamers will lament, $800 isn’t a rare asking price for 4K desktop tech in 2022. In fact, when you step into slightly larger screen sizes, prices can easily exceed $1,000.

My monitor and my review stand arrived in separate retail boxes indicating how Eve analyzed the two items for customers who wish to use the Spectrum with a VESA mount instead and therefore will only purchase the screen itself.

If you go the assembly route, you’ll miss out on the excellent support. It is very modern in style, with clean lines and a well-weighted one-legged base. Not really any gamer-y accents to speak of, just minimalist space-age gray simplicity. The stand allows the monitor to tilt and change height easily, which feels solid, although unfortunately there’s no swiveling. This is perhaps the only downside to the stand, other than a lack of concealed cable management.

The sleek minimalism extends to the screen itself, which doesn’t really sport any gamer-style exterior decorations either. The bezel is quite thin and is interrupted by a single LED at the bottom whose color is adjustable (or you can turn it off completely).

Beyond that, there’s no typical RGB to be found, not even on the back of the display like many companies are integrating these days. A silly addition, when you think about it, because who looks at the back of their computer screen?

The Spectrum is practically packed with connectivity options. The heavyweights are obviously stuff like the two HDMI 2.1 ports, making this a solid option for PS5 and Xbox Series X users who want to make the most of their consoles’ display capabilities. You also get a single DisplayPort 1.4 for standard PC connections and a 100W USB-C port for power laptop users who want to both charge their device and use the Spectrum as an external display simultaneously.

A convenient upstream USB-B input complements the main ports, which supplies juice to a vertical USB hub that adorns the side of the monitor. Here you have two USB-A ports, a single USB-C port, as well as a headphone jack. Really, there’s no shortage of options on the Spectrum when it comes to plugging things in.

The only downside to all these extras is that, at least as far as I can tell, Eve doesn’t include any cables in the box. No HDMI, no DP, no USB. Only a rather beefy power supply unit with the accompanying power cable is included. I have to say, for $800, it feels like Eve is cutting corners unnecessarily. Why offer so many connectivity options without any way to use them directly?

Beyond the ports, a single concave OSD joystick sits behind the bottom of the screen, and it’s quite satisfying to control and click. The entire monitor simply feels Well, from the matte plastic finish to the overall heft of the components to the cleverly recessed power button. From a strictly hardware perspective, the Spectrum comes across as high-quality, high-end, and exclusive. That’s not even mentioning the well-designed packaging.

Spectrum’s LG Adaptive Sync IPS panel offers 98% coverage of the DCI-P3 color space, and in display tests with my Spyder X device, that claim seemed to be largely true. I think content creators will be pleased with Eve’s monitor color accuracy, and that visual brilliance reflects well in games.

HDR600 is… okay. At least it’s better than some recent HDR400 panels I’ve tested, which is borderline inexcusable for HDR technology. The spectrum is very bright for most use cases, so the whole HDR stuff is a little finicky, if I’m being honest.

I’ve played all sorts of titles on the Spectrum, from Cyberpunk 2077 to Halo Infinite, Elden Ring, Borderlands 3, Overwatch, Spyro Reignited Trilogy, and Lego Star Wars: The Skywalker Saga. In short, the monitor delivered 4K gaming quality at 144Hz. Granted, if you’re on PC, you’ll need a beastly graphics card to drive those sorts of visuals, and if you’re on console, you’ll need to own a PS5 or an Xbox Series X|S.

The faithful UFO test showed no noticeable ghosting, nor did I see it during gameplay. There are plenty of overdrive settings to tweak inside the OSD, as well as a frame rate counter and a reticle, but I usually keep all of these options disabled or, in the case of overdrive, set to “normal”.

Overall, the Eve Spectrum does what it originally intended to do: display games very well. Modern titles look amazing in 4K at 144Hz, provided you have the hardware to push the software that far, and the monitor does all of this while being aesthetically pleasing for most desktop setups. For my personal taste, I think 27 inches is too small for both productivity and gaming, but your mileage may vary.

I’m not entirely sure crowdsourcing was necessary for how little the Spectrum ultimately deviated from the pack, nor did I appreciate the high price tag and the few cables included in the box. Eve has created a very solid screen, no doubt, and it will meet the needs of most gamers, especially in terms of resolution and refresh rate.

But with how quickly the competition is churning out rival products with the once scarce HDMI 2.1 ports, I imagine the Spectrum is quickly becoming a tough sell. At least Eve seems to keep the monitor up to date with many firmware releases. Hope to have some time with the shiny version soon, so stay tuned for that.

Disclosure: Eve provided a review product for hedging purposes.

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