The Evnia 49M2C8900 is a functionally faultless OLED display
- Manufacturer: Philips
- Model: Evnia 49M2C8900
- SKU: 49M2C8900/00
- Display Type: QD OLED Gaming Monitor
- Resolution: 5120*1440p (32:9 Dual 1440p)
- Refresh rate: 240 Hz
- Price when reviewed: £1,649
- Supplied by: Philips
Philips Evnia 49M2C8900 Review
To preface this review, I haven’t fully tested all of the 32:9 Ultrawide OLEDs on the market, but based on our results, choosing the best at this level is purely semantics. I’m sure someone will point out the Samsung Odyssey G9 as being the best, but having seen one in person, I couldn’t specifically pinpoint any area where the G9 is better (although the Evnia 49M2C8900 looks better aesthetically, IMO, and it has AmbiGlow). No matter the lighting conditions, the picture quality of the 49M2C8900 is exemplary. This monitor does everything brilliantly well, with no drawbacks or concessions (apart from the price, but I’d argue that it’s justified). This Evnia masterpiece is essentially perfect.
I have spent hours poring over our test results and playing game after game, trying to find anything wrong with this monitor. The only thing I can come up with is that the colour temperature is slightly too warm, but even this isn’t apparent without measuring equipment. I toyed with mentioning the peak brightness of 254 cd/m² as being too low, but with the perfect black levels, it wasn’t remotely an issue (not to mention the over 1000 cd/m² highlights in HDR mode). Likewise, I’d love an even bigger dual-4K version of this monitor, but that isn’t a failure on the part of the 49M2C8900, just wishful thinking.
Where to start? Well, the response is out of this world good. 240 Hz refresh rate, no visible motion blur, super-low latency, and grey-to-grey transitions that can be measured in mere milliseconds. Image quality? Pitch black with supremely bright highlights, exceptional colour accuracy, huge gamut coverage, epic viewing angles and impressive HDR performance. This monitor is insanely good.
This is also a fully-featured display. HDMI 2.1, DisplayPort 1.4 and DP over USB-C cater for whichever connection you have available, and the integrated USB hub with inbuilt KVM switching makes this an amazing multipurpose display. There’s also a handy remote control, the AmbiGlow works perfectly, providing incredible backlighting, and it’s a stunning-looking monitor in a beautiful white colourway.
An area where some monitors falter is the sRGB compatibility. The Evnia 49M2C8900 allows you to adjust the brightness in sRGB mode – the colour saturation is very high (though not oversaturated), which I know some users and content creators aren’t a fan of – being able to adjust the clamped sRGB colour space is a huge advantage and something that is often overlooked by manufacturers.
You even get a quality set of speakers in the 49M2C8900. The 30 W (quad 7.5 W) speaker array has an exceptional soundstage, thanks to the extra wide spacing. There are a pair of ported 7.5 W woofers and a pair of 7.5 W tweeters, producing warm bass, rounded mids and crystal clear treble.
Admittedly, double-wide displays aren’t for everyone, but if you’re reading this you have probably decided this format of display is what you want. I’m certainly a fan of this aspect ratio; there are occasionally some drawbacks when games aren’t properly optimised for it (such as having to drag items from one side of the screen to the other in PUBG), but the expansive screenspace and awe-inspiring visibility vastly outweigh that slight negative – Driving games in particular benefit immensely from the huge span of double-wide displays.
It can feel like a bit of wasted space if you’re watching full-screen 16:9 videos, where half of your display is unused, but unlike IPS or VA panels which can have a slightly distracting grey tinge caused by lightbleed and VA/IPS glow, the inky blacks at either side are unlit, and if anything, increase immersion. That said, if you like to full-screen videos or games whilst doing other things, then a dual monitor setup may be preferable (but PBP covers that, too). This monitor is all about mega-wide gaming, though, and for that, I’ve tried nothing better. It’s also great for productivity, where the extra space is great for popping open multiple windows and your editing apps, but I prefer the increased vertical real estate of 2160p over 1440p.
You’ll need a decent GPU to power this beast – I ran my testing with an RTX 4080 and a laptop RTX 3080, with excellent results. You’ll need an RTX 3080/RX6800XT to even begin to push this monitor’s potential. This monitor should be viewed as an investment, though. Even with years’ worth of PC upgrades, this is still going to be a stunning display way down the line, and as the hardware catches up, you’ll be able to use more and more of the incredible 240 Hz refresh rate.
For anyone concerned about using an OLED as a gaming monitor, aside from some basic care, you don’t have to worry about a thing. I’ve been using OLEDs for a while now, and the only thing I’ve adapted is going back to using a screensaver, rather than leaving my display turned on for hours at a time. All of the panel care technology runs in the background, with the main panel refresh happening automatically overnight when your display has been off for more than 2 hours, and pixel orbiting very subtly moves the image every few minutes to help alleviate the slim risk of panel burn-in. Traditional LCD screens can be left on indefinitely without concern, but weigh that up against the benefits of OLED, and it’s a no-brainer. OLED is superior to IPS and VA panel tech in every single way.
Finally, the out-of-the-box setup is spot on. Adaptive sync and low input latency were already activated, and aside from sRGB mode if you prefer it, everything is good to go without adjustment. I preferred the native colour temperature compared to 6500K, as it was slightly closer to my preferred colour temp, but only subtly. Even if you don’t change anything you can rest assured you’re getting exceptional image quality.
Design and build
I love the white Evnia colourway, and especially the mottled colourful speckles on the legs of the stand. The bezels are slim, and even though the chin bezel is a touch larger, in proportion to the huge width of the 49M2C8900 it’s discreet. The panel itself is also very slim, offset against a slightly larger section at the rear containing the internals and IO ports.
Philips has added the excellent AmbiGlow technology to the 49M2C8900, providing stunning backlighting, and unlike previous Evnia monitors we tested, the ‘follow video’ mode is super bright, accurate and responsive. If you have never tried AmbiGlow, you’re in for a treat. It accurately and rapidly responds to the content at the edges of your display, extending the colours behind the display onto your wall. Once you’ve tried it, you’ll never go back (I spent about £200 to recreate the effect with Twinkly lights and SignalRGB software, and it’s still not as good). On the previous Evnia monitors we tested, it either only worked with certain display connections or operated with limited brightness/colour saturation – with the 49M2C8900, it’s both bright, and beautifully (and accurately) saturated.
The stand is solid, with handy ergonomic adjustability. You can tilt the display -5/+15 degrees, swivel +/- 20 degrees, and adjust the height by 120 mm. It’s more than enough adjustability for a monitor of this size, but in practical terms, I was able to raise and tilt the monitor enough to see underneath when I plugged in all of my cables. This is very important for a display this wide, where you can’t just turn it around on your desk to see the ports.
Evnia has also included a colour-coordinated remote control for the 49M2C8900. The IR receiver requires you to aim the remote quite accurately towards the bottom of the monitor to get consistent response, but it’s still preferable to trying to reach the joystick at the back of the display. The responsiveness of the remote was okay, though I would have liked it to adjust faster when changing things like brightness – this was only because of my benchmarking, though, where I needed to change through 0-25-50-75-100% brightness. Outside of testing, after my initial adjustments, I barely needed the remote.
Connectivity and Supported Resolutions
The Philips Evnia 49M2C8900 has an outstanding selection of ports: 2x HDMI 2.1, DisplayPort 1.4 and DP over USB-C inputs handle display connections for PCs, laptops and consoles, along with a 3.5mm audio out and a four-port USB 3.2 Gen1 hub which has 4x downstream USB-A ports (including two fast-charge ports).
The 49M2C8900 supports the following optimum resolutions:
HDMI 2.1: 5120*1440 @ 240 Hz
DisplayPort: 5120*1440 @ 240 Hz
USB-C: 5120*1440 @ 240 Hz
Having the full refresh available regardless of connection is huge, as previous 32:9 displays we have tested have restricted the resolution and/or refresh depending on the connection type. The Evnia 49M2C8900 is Freesync Premium certified and also supports G-Sync, with an adaptive sync window that spans 48-240 Hz via FreeSync, and 50-240 Hz via G-Sync, across all inputs. Consoles can also be connected, running at 1440p/120 Hz.
I loved having the integrated USB hub, and I frequently used the KVM hub when switching between my desktop and laptop. If you’re using USB-C, you can charge your device at up to 90 W, however, this is limited to 65 W at brightness levels above 70% and/or if the USB hub is drawing more than 5W. The screen is a little darker but still usable at 70% (170 cd/m²), making this a viable option if you need to multitask between devices.
Both PIP and PBP are supported, and the scaling when using PBP worked correctly (I had issues with previous Evnia models – this one was perfect). PBP is even more useful than usual as it doesn’t dominate a whole quarter of your screen (it’s just a small portion in the corner of your expansive display). This is especially useful with KVM. Being able to watch content from a second device or refer to data from spreadsheets without having to copy files across was very useful.
Whiteish grey DisplayPort, HDMI and USB-C cables are provided, along with a USB-B to A cable and an integrated power supply. The EU power cable is white (well, greyish white, but it’s colour-coordinated), but sadly the UK 3-pin is black. Hopefully, Evnia will produce a matching UK power lead in future.
TL;DR – It’s essentially perfect.
I’d normally refrain from using such a definitive statement as that, but based on current hardware and expectations, the 49M2C8900 is as close to perfect as I’ve ever seen. Gamut coverage is outstanding, the semi-gloss display enhances clarity, and responsiveness is fantastic – I’m going to need a thesaurus to come up with more superlatives!
All the tests we ran were perfect: No inversion (pixel walk), perfectly neutral sharpness balancing, accurately balanced gamma across all colours, and clear distinctions in our gradient, black level and white saturation tests.
This monitor is ready to go straight out of the box. I’d recommend cranking the brightness to 100% to give the best possible contrast, and my preference was for the slightly closer to 6500K native colour preset, but these are just preferences with very slight differences. Most people aren’t as anal about image presentation as me, so you won’t need to change a single thing if you don’t want to.
It’s possible that the highly saturated colour could be jarring to some, and in this case, the sRGB colour clamping works exceptionally well, reigning in saturation. The sRGB colourspace also has adjustable brightness, which is hugely advantageous.
The QD OLED panel in the 49M2C8900 is the fastest panel we’ve ever tested. The grey-to-grey response is consistently below 3 ms – at its best, we’re looking at transitions measured in fractions of a millisecond.
With a response this fast, there’s no need for overdrive. Running the UFO Ghosting Test, there was zero perceivable motion blur. This monitor is just as good when it comes to extremely fast-paced competitive games as it is for providing sumptuous vistas in the best cinematic masterpieces. Whatever content you’re enjoying, the 49M2C8900 can keep up.
Brightness, contrast and colour
Using the Native preset, the display peaked at 254 cd/m², which isn’t as high as some of the brighter IPS panels you can get, but the pure black of the OLED self-illuminating pixels gives you essentially infinite contrast, which in turn makes the screen seem far brighter than it is.
Our test results show the contrast peaking at over 17000:1, but there was likely some light bleeding due to the curved display that affected the results. Even so, a best-in-class IPS panel only scores around 1500:1, and VA panels around 3500:1. Displays with local dimming come closer, but even with over 1000 dimming zones, that doesn’t come close to the 7,372,800 individually lit pixels of the Evnia 49M2N8900. In real terms, local dimming can cause haloing around tiny details, whereas this OLED can produce massively bright individual pixels the size of a pinprick.
The Native temperature preset most closely matched the 6500K white point, and unadjusted colour accuracy matched the fully calibrated display that I had alongside. The colour accuracy on the Evnia 49M2C8900 is very good, with an average DeltaE of 0.95. We’ve tested more accurate monitors, but this display is more than good enough for creative professionals and gamers alike.
The gamma with the default setting (Gamma 2.2) fluctuated on either side of the 2.2 curve (slightly darker in appearance from 0-50%, slightly higher from 50-100%), however, this is again probably a result of the curved display preventing my colourimeter from sitting flush with the screen. This likely skewed the results, as visually it looked perfect.
Gamut coverage and HDR
Colour saturation and gamut coverage are exemplary. This monitor is designed to maximise the DCI-P3 colour space, which is desirable and contributes towards the stunning HDR performance, but it also has exceptional Adobe RGB coverage. Whatever your needs, this monitor has you covered.
The display of the Evnia 49M2C8900 is magnificently vibrant. Colours are effortlessly rich without any sign of banding or oversaturation.
The panel in the 49M2C8900 has native 10-bit colour depth, allowing it to display up to 1.07 billion shades of colour. Gamut coverage* is brilliant (amongst the best we’ve tested), surpassing almost every monitor that’s been on our test bench.
- sRGB – 100% coverage – 154.2% volume
- AdobeRGB – 96.4% coverage – 125.1% volume
- DCI-P3 – 99.3% coverage – 118.9% volume
*Coverage refers to how much of the specified area of the gamut is covered, whilst volume includes any colour that extends beyond the defined gamut.
The Evnia 49M2C89000 supports HDR, but even though the relatively low peak SDR brightness might make you think it won’t perform so well, this monitor excels. The huge DCI-P3 coverage allows it to display staggering levels of colour, and this display can hit small-area peaks of 455 cd/m² (<10% display area) and over 1075 cd/m² on highlighted areas below 3% of the total screen space. (This might sound like a small area, but when watching HDR movies or playing HDR games, it makes a huge difference.)
This monitor is DisplayHDR True Black 400 certified, and even though on paper it seems lower than HDR 1000+, it’s a far more impressive achievement. The TrueBlack certification relates to the absolute black level (down to 0.0005 cd/m²), as well as how quickly the display responds to changes in brightness (fast AF, as it happens). The contrast is out of this world thanks to the true blacks, and however fleeting the highlights are, they make a huge impact. Make no bones about it, unless you already have a stunning OLED monitor, this display is better than anything you’ve ever seen.
Viewing angles and uniformity
Panel uniformity is the best we’ve tested, both in terms of colour and brightness uniformity. What makes that truly impressive is that this is a 32:9 display. In my experience, ultrawide panels tend to fall off towards the extremities, but the 49M2C8900 beats out even small-panel monitors, and the figures back up these claims.
Off-angle viewing is almost flawless. There is no perceivable colour or contrast distortion at the most extreme of angles, both horizontal and vertical. This is the best monitor we’ve tested to date, no question.
The Evnia 49M2C8900 has a brilliant audio setup, with 2x 7.5W Tweeters and 2x 7.5W woofers. The sound is excellent and would take a very competent set of external speakers to surpass it. Audio is moved around you effectively thanks to the width of the monitor, creating a welcomingly vast soundstage. The bass is suitably deep and rumbling, complemented by the tweeters which produce a crisp and bright finish. Apart from the Bowers & Wilkins speakers of the 559M1RYV, these are the most impressive integrated speakers we’ve heard.
This monitor is comfortably the best ultrawide display we’ve tested (or any monitor, for that matter), even beating out the incredible (also Evnia) 34M2C8600. Quite simply, this monitor is flawless. If you can afford it, and can find a need for the 32:9 aspect ratio, you won’t be disappointed. It’s expensive, but the Evnia 49M2C8900 is an astounding monitor that will last you several generations of hardware before you even begin to think it is outdated. Simply perfection.
The only downside? I don’t get to keep it…