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ASUS PB287Q 4K UHD 28-in Monitor Review

Author: Ryan Shrout
Subject: Displays
Manufacturer: ASUS

Build Quality and Stand Details

Even though I liked the panel and pricing of the Samsung U28D590D 4K monitor from earlier this month, my biggest complaint fell around the build quality of the stand and the lack of flexibility it offered. The ASUS PB287Q is a far stretch from that situation.

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The PB287Q is a 28-in 4K monitor, but should not be confused with the PB278Q, that is a 27-in 2560x1440 monitor. When I reviewed the Samsung U28D590D I found that "wobble" was a big concern for that stand. While not perfect, the ASUS option is much better with heaver, more substantial base that allows it to sit more still and level on various surfaces.

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ASUS' stand has height, angle and pivot adjustment to let the user place the screen and angle it correctly for nearly any particular desk setup. Compared to the Samsung monitor that offered only angle adjustment, and minimally, this is a breath of fresh air.

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I'm definitely interested in getting a set of 5 of these PB287Q (ASUS?) to run in 5-way Eyefinity while setup in portrait mode. Surely a 10,800 x 3,840 configuration would be worth some testing...?

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The ASUS monitor, on the right just has a level of flexibility that the Samsung option cannot offer. Need the display a bit higher with your favorite desk/chair configuration? The PB287Q has you covered while you'll need some old text books to raise the level of the Samsung.

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And if you want to get more serious about things and mount the ASUS PB287Q to an articulating arm or multiple display array, the VESA mount capability of the PB287Q will accommodate. That is another feature the Samsung U28D590D can't match.

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The bezels, though the same thickness, are quite different as well. The shiny surface of the Samsung looks nice until you get fingerprints or glare coming off of it. With a matte style on the ASUS display the amount of shininess more closely patches that of the screen itself.

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The interface on the ASUS PB287Q is more traditional with a set of button along the back of the monitor. I did like the Samsung "joystick" style of interface but some things are just better left alone. 

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Looking at the back, you can see the power button on the far left (though on the right as you face the screen). ASUS should definitely have moved this button further away or at least made it a different style as I found myself accidentally hitting it a couple times during testing.

Two of the buttons on the far right are actually customizable - you can see them to control the volume, or bring up PiP functionality or many other options, by changing their settings in on-screen display.

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Connectivity is downward facing and includes a pair of MHL-capable HDMI ports, a DisplayPort 1.2 connection and two stereo audio outputs. The MHL capability is a lesser known feature that allows users with capable smartphones to directly connect to the HDMI for output. Check your phone (and purchase a specific cable) to see if you can take advantage of it.

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Even though the actual screens in use for both monitors are essentially identical, the stand quality and stand features are just much more intelligently integrated with the ASUS PB287Q.

May 27, 2014 | 10:00 AM - Posted by Alancsjr (not verified)

"The ASUS monitor, on the left just has a level of flexibility that the Samsung option cannot offer"

It is your other left :) Great review though...

May 27, 2014 | 11:37 AM - Posted by Ryan Shrout

Thanks, fixed!

May 27, 2014 | 10:03 AM - Posted by mAxius

now cram this into a 24" :)

May 27, 2014 | 11:38 AM - Posted by Ryan Shrout

Why would you want to? I already think 28-in might be too small to really take advantage of this kind of pixel count.

May 27, 2014 | 12:10 PM - Posted by pastuch

I couldn't agree more. I have a 27 inch 1440P that I need to increase font sizes on to be comfortable. I have 20/20 vision in both eyes and I'm only 33 years old. I actually really like the look of the 32inch 1440P Benq just came out with but it's a little slow for gaming. (TFTCentral)

I'm planning on using a Vizio P Series 50 Inch 4k as my primary computer monitor when it comes out. Assuming it supports Chroma Subsampling (4:4:4.) At 50 inches it would have almost the same PPI as a current 24 inch 1080p monitor.

For more info on Chroma Subsampling reference:
http://www.avsforum.com/t/1381724/official-4-4-4-chroma-subsampling-thre...

May 27, 2014 | 12:16 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

I find the Dell UP2414Q perfectly usable at normal distances with no scaling.

May 27, 2014 | 04:48 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Will these SST 4k monitors ever come in larger sizes like 34-36"?

May 29, 2014 | 11:49 AM - Posted by OctaveanActually (not verified)

I agree with Ryan on this. A 28" 4K monitor is about the minimum size IMO without employing scaling / pixel doubling. 32" is probably a bit more comfortable at native 3840x2160 but 24" is likely unusable.

If you really want a 24" 4K monitor then the Dell UP2414Q has been out for some time and has a better quality IPS display that will do 60Hz at 3840x2160. I've seen it for a low as ~$850 USD. I would have bought one myself but IMO it was too small overall and too small for the then MSRP of about ~$1300. Its also MST at 60Hz using the older UHD scales and I have heard some people stating that the two halves of the MST aren't always in sync (this causes rips / tearing down the center of the screen).

I wouldn't touch anything smaller then 28" for 4K desktop use personally. I wish they would make 32" or larger TN 4K displays for about ~$1000 USD or so.

May 27, 2014 | 10:44 AM - Posted by Polycrastinator (not verified)

Here’s the Chrome High DPI fix:

Go to chrome://flags and find the “HiDPI Support Windows” then set to enabled. Save, restart Chrome. Close Chrome again, and go to its properties. Go to the compatibility tab, and select “Disable display scaling on High DPI settings.” Apply, open up Chrome again, and voila, Chrome works just fine.

Why doesn't Google enable this by default? No idea. But it's frustrating because if you don't know the option is there, there's no way to find out about it. And it's not exactly easy to enable.

May 27, 2014 | 11:38 AM - Posted by Ryan Shrout

I'll give this a shot.

But you're right, it's beyond annoying that somehow this wasn't better integrated.

May 27, 2014 | 02:06 PM - Posted by Polycrastinator (not verified)

I've used it on a 32" Dell 4K monitor we got in at work. It definitely improves things a lot in terms of clarity. It still doesn't look as good as IE does with scaling on, but it's better.

May 30, 2014 | 12:08 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

I could not find the setting you mentioned.
I only found "Force high DPI mode Chrome OS".

May 30, 2014 | 03:41 PM - Posted by Polycrastinator (not verified)

One of my colleagues discovered this this morning. They removed the setting with the latest version of Chrome. You now need to enter a registry change to enable High DPI mode. Honestly, at this point my feeling is Google wants to make it as difficult to enable as possible in an effort to make Windows look bad, but keep the code in there so as High DPI screen proliferate they can flip the switch once they start looking out of step.
Anyway, here's a link to the changes that need to be made. I haven't had the opportunity to see if this works, so use at your own risk:

https://groups.google.com/a/chromium.org/forum/#!topic/chromium-dev/U_K1NHuMLic

May 27, 2014 | 10:53 AM - Posted by JosiahBradley

For monitor reviews can we get a picture taken from the bottom of the monitor for extreme angles. I have found TN panels fair far worse when veiwed from the bottom. This presents itself as a very obvious problem when you use portrait mode as either your left or right will go completely black. This has prevented me from setting up a portrait eyefinity display in the past. Thanks for the review.

May 27, 2014 | 11:40 AM - Posted by Ryan Shrout

Even if you set it up in portait mode, you would still aim to look at the center, correct?

We did include one image from the top - but I'll look at the bottom to see if anything is different there.

May 27, 2014 | 01:06 PM - Posted by JosiahBradley

In my line of work I have my monitors on arms to show projects to clients sitting next to me, each view the monitor off center. When I did dual portrait the TN panels were completely unusable due to the aforementioned black effect. I prefer portrait mode becasue I work on webpages were height beats out width. And portrait is beautiful for long pages of code.

May 27, 2014 | 01:34 PM - Posted by Fishbait

Although graphics performance scaling is mostly linear (for single card machines), I just drew a parallel between this and automobile top speed. The amount of hp needed to just push the air in front of your car increases dramatically with speed. :D

May 27, 2014 | 02:20 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

My eyes are not that good anymore...I'll pass.

May 27, 2014 | 02:23 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

I thought it was 4320...Quad HD ?

May 28, 2014 | 12:32 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Qhd stands for 1280x720 * 4.
4k commonly refers to 1920x1080 * 4.

720p is also HD. 1080p is FHD. QFHD doesn't have the same ring as 4k.

May 30, 2014 | 05:14 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

4K is also known as UHD

June 12, 2014 | 04:31 AM - Posted by Aaron (not verified)

4k and UHD are different.
DCI 4k = 4096 × 2160
UHD = 3840 × 2160

May 27, 2014 | 03:28 PM - Posted by VitalSyntax (not verified)

What are the chances of future G-Sync support? Do you think ASUS will offer a 4k G-Sync monitor within the next year? I know they have the SWIFT at 1440p, but I'm looking for 4k. I see that ACER has a 4k G-Sync monitor coming soon, hope ASUS offers this as well. Do you think 4k is worth it without G-Sync, because most games will run sub 60fps, and G-Sync would be very helpful.

October 17, 2014 | 08:37 AM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Hmm, I had the exact opposite thought, G-Sync is beneficial when your videocard is feeding the monitor 100+ fps and your monitor is locked at 60Hz, thus being unable to display it either beacause the v-sync on or showing tearing if v-sync is disabled. Then you will see the horizontal tearing across your screen. In this case any current available card in single mode will have a really hard time to perform over 60 fps

May 28, 2014 | 01:05 AM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Hey Ryan

What do you think of the new LG 34UM95 34" UltraWide Monitor
21:9 3440x1440

especially for gaming?

Will you be getting one in for review?

cheers

May 28, 2014 | 05:44 PM - Posted by Carl W (not verified)

I am primarily a Photoshop user as opposed to being a gamer.
FPS will not be an issue in my case as I am looking for raw real estate. I need to know if my AMD A8-5600 on-board GPU will be able to push the necessary resolution?
Thanks.

May 28, 2014 | 09:51 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

Ryan.. need to fix this line contained in the third from last paragraph of the article..

"I am guessing that demand, at least early in the release, will outstrip demand."

Demand outstrip demand? Supply needs to replace one of those demands!!

June 12, 2014 | 04:40 AM - Posted by Aaron (not verified)

Personally I find the good old 30" 2560/1600 still works a treat, no need for any scaling and not that taxing that I need $3k worth of graphics card(s).

Still, why can't Nvidia let us have 4x 750ti's?

2x dual 750ti cards will do the trick.

If the 750ti can drive 1080p gaming with a 60w tdp then four of these at 240w tdp, much lower than the 1000+ watts of the high end cards, should be able to drive UHD resolutions.

June 22, 2014 | 12:19 PM - Posted by Anonymous (not verified)

I am wondering if you ran into any of the issues many of us early adopters have? 1st I had to test out 3 DP cables before I could get one that handled the 4k @ 60hz. 2nd the monitor doesn't wake up from sleep and often clicks off and requires the power to be removed because it will detect the video signal again.

June 25, 2014 | 07:59 PM - Posted by Jared T (not verified)

yeah my pb287q does this as well, it is really annoying to reach back and unplug it...

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