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Review of my AW3420DW

belgolas

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May 9, 2007
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St. Thomas, Ontario
IMG_20200219_194628.jpg

So I got the AW3420DW a week ago. It is without a doubt the best monitor I have owned. Though I will say going from 27" 2560x1440 144hz to 34" 3440x1440 120hz isn't a massive upgrade. My old monitor was the ROG Swift PG278Q. It was an excellent TN panel that served me well. I wanted though to try ultra wide so here I am.

So to my surprise I have zero flaws with this monitor's build quality. No dead/stuck/bright pixels even though it is an IPS panel I have very low ips glow that isn't noticeable. No ghosting to my eyes. One complaint is it might be a bit over saturated at stock though that just might be me going from TN for many years to IPS.

Gsync worked right off the bat. I plugged it in and after a few seconds Nvidia detected it as a gsync monitor. I have't notice any difference between 144hz of my old monitor to 120hz on this monitor. Performance impact of going to 3440x1440 over 2650x1440 isn't that much. Some games I had to lower some settings most most games run just fine maxed out on my 1080 Ti. Sure I am not getting 120 FPS in every game but I don't care and FPS games where FPS matter like CSGO run at like 240 FPS anyway.

The monitor is as bright as my old monitor and I keep it at max brightness. If I am viewing a mostly white page it is a bit bright but I prefer the better color quality at max brightness. Going from my old monitor to this nano IPS the colors are indeed a huge upgrade. My friend I had over also was wowed by the colors and enjoyed playing games or even watching videos. Once you get a 21:9 movie or show it looks great.

Speaking of 21:9 I found it hasn't given me that much of an advantage over 16:9 in competitive FPS games. I do notice that if I am camping a spot I do get a much wider view so I can watch for movement and cover more so there is some advantage. So I can be guarding one hallway but still be able to see other hallways or doors. It doesn't help much though when you are moving around a lot and pushing an objective. Don't think you will get a massive advantage. For strategy games and third person games are so freaking good on this monitor. I can get to see so much more info and less clutter for strategy games like HOI4. It is truly impressive.

Though there are some negatives with 21:9. Some games don't support it that well. Like the Witcher 3 where cutscenes and inventory/merchant screens will have black bars on both sides. There is fixes but it takes editing some files. Watching media there is a lot that are not in ultrawide. Most of youtube for example is not and often Netflix, Prime Video, or Google Play are not in 21:9 so you will see black bars on both sides. There is an extension in Chrome to force a video to ultrawide but I don't like using it as it makes everyone look fat.

It is also curved which took a couple of hours to get used to. At first I didn't like it but it helps with immersion.

Overall I would say this is one heck of a monitor. I would have liked it if it had HDR but that is far too expensive at the moment.
 

JD

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Jul 16, 2007
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Welcome to the club! Though I guess you 1up'd most of us here with the AW3418DW :p

I'm surprised you run maximum brightness. That's eye-searing for me, but I guess everyone's vision is different.
 

Izerous

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Feb 7, 2019
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Edmonton
Bethesda titles and borderlands among others don't support ultra wide too well. Their game engines. Among other calculate based on screen height and ignore width. So. This results in menus rendering off the top and bottom of the screens etc. Skyrim had to run 3rd party memory hacks just to make it remotely playable. I was constantly running into issues like that among many other various title too. That was at 5760x1080 (48:9) so it was exaggerated even more but it is one of a couple reasons that I stopped looking at ultra wides and triple setups etc.

Correction calculate based on width not height**
 

Lysrin

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Nova Scotia
That was my experience early on with my ultrawide @Izerous , I was a fairly early adopter, but it has improved. Enough that I wouldn't warn anyone off an ultrawide, 3440x1440 res, at this point for gaming. Now 5760x1080... that's ultra-ULTRA-wide! ;) But as @belgolas and you said, cutscenes, menu width, etc. are still issues. And the 16:9 on a 34" 21:9 3440x1440 is actually a bit smaller diagonally than it would be on a same res 27" 16:9 monitor. So that isn't ideal. That is one of the downsides. I think 3440x1600 would be an ideal res in an ultrawide.

I was surprised by the 100% brightness comment too! I run my X34 at 50% for brightness and contrast and in my low lit study that is still bright on white stuff. Are you wearing your sun glasses at night? 😁

Glad the purchase turned out well! Thanks for the review.
 
Last edited:

Babrbarossa

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Dec 2, 2006
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New Brunswick
Saying you were surprised that there weren't any dead pixels etc... Did you happen to grab that single refurb that was on sale at bestbuy canada's website?
 

belgolas

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May 9, 2007
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St. Thomas, Ontario
Saying you were surprised that there weren't any dead pixels etc... Did you happen to grab that single refurb that was on sale at bestbuy canada's website?
No I bought it new.

Another thing to add to the review is that you can turn off all the RGB including the power indicator light. So it is a very clean look.
 

belgolas

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Joined
May 9, 2007
Messages
4,241
Location
St. Thomas, Ontario
I was surprised by the 100% brightness comment too! I run my X34 at 50% for brightness and contrast and in my low lit study that is still bright on white stuff. Are you wearing your sun glasses at night? 😁
I dropped it down to 80% as it put too much strain on my eyes.
 

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