CES 2017: Hands-on with the ASUS ROG Swift PG27UQ HDR Monitor

Subject: Displays | January 6, 2017 - 12:33 PM |
Tagged: swift, ROG, PG27UQ, monitor, high dynamic range, hdr, display, CES 2017, CES, asus

While the announcement of a new 27-inch HDR display from ASUS leaked a bit early, the ROG Swift PG27UQ is now official, and Ryan spent some quality time with this impressive display at CES:

There is no shortage of lust-worthy specifications from the PG27UQ, with a 144 Hz refresh rate from its 4K panel, NVIDIA G-SYNC HDR with 384-zone local dimming from its direct LED backlighting system, 1000 nit peak brightness, and quantum dot technology for a wide color gamut.

Here are the specifications for the ROG Swift PG27UQ from ASUS:

  • Display Resolution: 3840x2160
  • Panel type: 27in (16:9) IPS panel
  • Backlight Type: Direct LED; dynamically controlled across 384 zones
  • High Dynamic Range: Yes, HDR 10
  • Refresh rate: Up to 144Hz
  • Brightness: 1,000cd/m² (peak)
  • Quantum Dot Technology: Yes
  • Input: DisplayPort 1.4 x2, HDMI x1

ROG_SWIFT.jpg

No specifics on pricing or availably have been announced yet.

(Update -- Scott Michaud @ January 6th, 11pm EST: ASUS has published a blog post claiming that the monitor will be available in Q3. OC3D claims that the price will be $1199, although that doesn't seem right and our anonymous sources have it closer to $1500.)

Coverage of CES 2017 is brought to you by NVIDIA!

PC Perspective's CES 2017 coverage is sponsored by NVIDIA.

Follow all of our coverage of the show at https://pcper.com/ces!

CES 2017: Dell Announces UltraSharp 32 Ultra HD 8K Monitor

Subject: Displays | January 5, 2017 - 06:30 PM |
Tagged: UP3218K, ultrasharp, monitor, display, CES 2017, CES, 8k

Dell has announced the UltraSharp 32 Ultra HD 8K Monitor (model UP3218K), which is outfitted with a 7680 x 4320 resolution panel and offers 1.07 billion colors (10-bit) with 100% sRGB and Adobe RGB coverage.

Dell 8K.jpg

The Dell UltraSharp 32 Ultra HD 8K Monitor (image credit: Dell via 9to5 Mac)

"With our new UltraSharp 32 Ultra HD 8K Monitor (UP3218K), we’re pushing the boundaries of innovation to feature four times more content than Ultra HD 4K resolution and 16 times more content than Full HD in addition to 33.2 million pixels of resolution compared to a 5K monitor’s 14 million pixels of resolution. The new UP3218K offers breakthrough realism with the finest details and color-critical performance for a truly transcendent visual experience thanks to Dell PremierColor, which offers 1.07 billion colors and 100 percent Adobe RGB and 100 percent sRGB, and an unprecedented 280 ppi to view most images in native format. Feast your eyes!"

The blog post on Dell.com does not offer full specifications for the UP3218K, but there should be an official product page up in the near future as Dell announced a release date of March 23. The price? $4,999.

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Source: Dell

CES 2017: Razer Project Valerie Multi-Monitor Laptop Concept

Subject: Displays, Mobile | January 5, 2017 - 12:36 PM |
Tagged: razer, Project Valerie, notebook, multi-monitor, laptop, gaming, concept, CES 2017, CES

Razer has announced Project Valerie, a radical concept for a triple-monitor gaming laptop described as "the world’s first gaming laptop capable of housing three individual G-SYNC displays". A picture is worth a thousand words, and there is just something about a laptop with three 17.3-inch 4K displays.

Razer Project Valerie - Top Open.jpg

Each 17.3-inch 4K IGZO display is equipped with NVIDIA G-SYNC technology that is capable of producing the smoothest possible framerates and expansive 180 degree NVIDIA Surround View gaming. Creative professionals can look forward to 100 percent Adobe RGB color accuracy and the greatest amount of screen real estate ever assembled in a single computer.

Project Valerie uses an automatic deployment mechanism designed by Razer. Each display mechanically slides out of the side of the main screen and adjusts into place, making it easy for users to deploy. With integrated multi-monitor support, users will no longer have to deal with the cable clutter from traditional desktop setups. The result is a clean gaming and working environment that’s just as easy to maintain.

Razer Project Valerie - Open Perspective.jpg

Razer has released a video for Project Valerie:

Called a "proposed system" at this point, the Project Valerie notebook would be based on a 1.5 inch thick unibody aluminum chassis with a weight of under 12 lbs. Razer states that the notebook would be equipped with an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1080 GPU, and exceeds the minumum hardware requirements for VR. The design includes Razer’s Ultra-Low-Profile Mechanical switch keyboard, and the notebook would be cooled using a thermal system comprised of "custom-designed fan and dynamic heat exchangers pair(ed) with a vapor chamber to maximize heat dissipation".

Razer Project Valerie - Front Perspective.jpg

The full press release is available after the break.

Coverage of CES 2017 is brought to you by NVIDIA!

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Source: Razer

CES 2017: First 4K TVs Powered by Amazon Fire TV Announced

Subject: Displays | January 5, 2017 - 07:00 AM |
Tagged: Westinghouse, Ultra HD, UHD, tv, television, seiki, FireTV, Element, CES 2017, CES, amazon, Alexa, 4k

In a market packed with UHD TVs, a trio of budget television manufacturers have introduced new Amazon Fire TV-powered 4K televisions at CES, with new models announced from Seiki, Westinghouse, and Element. These TVs are "the world’s first 4K Ultra HD Smart TVs with Amazon Fire TV built in", with remotes supporting Alexa voice commands.

Seiki_Element_4K_Ultra_HD_Smart_TV.jpg

Quoting the press release, the new models from Seiki, Westinghouse, and Element will all offer the following features:

  • Sizes: 43", 50", 55" and 65"
  • 4K Ultra HD 3,840 by 2,160 panel resolution on all models
  • The latest Amazon Fire TV user interface, including easy access to over-the-air TV programming (separate HD antenna required), simple TV input setup, and component switching
  • Through the included voice remote with Alexa, customers can search for content and programming, control TV inputs and settings, and access Alexa skills to play music, get the news, check weather, sports scores, and more
  • Voice remote with Alexa enabled control of smart home devices from multiple brands, including Belkin WeMo, Philips Hue, Wink, Insteon, Samsung SmartThings, Nest, TP-Link, Ecobee and more
  • Access to more than 7,000 channels, games, apps and Alexa skills, including over 300,000 TV episodes and movies from Amazon Video, HBO NOW, Hulu and more
  • Amazon Prime customers get unlimited access to Prime Video, featuring thousands of movies and TV episodes at no additional cost to their membership. Plus, with Amazon Channels, Prime members can now get HBO, SHOWTIME, STARZ, PBS KIDS, and over 100 more services. They only pay for the channels they want—no cable required, no additional apps to download, and easy online cancellation.
  • 3 GB memory and 16 GB internal storage
  • Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and Ethernet connectivity
  • Streaming resolution at 4K Ultra HD (2160p), 1080p, 720p up to 60 fps
  • One-year limited warranty and great customer support

Seiki_Fire_TV_Edition_Live.jpg

We have seen a similar idea with Roku TVs from Hisense, TCL, and others, as budget TV makers look to differentiate themselves; and the integration of the popular Amazon Fire TV for the OS may help position Seiki and company more favorably. Hopefully improvements in backlighting tech and UHD panel production cost reductions will result in a "trickle-down" effect for better picture quality for TVs selected on cost alone, but for now improved user interface design can go a long way in making these budget TVs pleasant to use.

Coverage of CES 2017 is brought to you by NVIDIA!

PC Perspective's CES 2017 coverage is sponsored by NVIDIA.

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Source: PR Newswire

CES 2017: (Leak) ASUS Announces PG27UQ HDR G-Sync

Subject: Displays | January 4, 2017 - 04:03 PM |
Tagged: nvidia, hdr, g-sync, asus

VideoCardz have apparently got their hands on an early ASUS press release for a new G-Sync monitor with DCI-P3 HDR support: the PG27UQ. This 27-inch panel can be driven up to 3840x2160 at 144 Hz, which is obviously a very high resolution that G-Sync will be a great help in making playable. This is one of the first G-Sync monitors to support HDR with the standard, just a couple of days after AMD announced FreeSync 2 (which also added HDR).

asus-2017-ces-gsynchdr-videocardz.png

Image Credit: ASUS via VideoCardz

In terms of the display itself, it is based on IPS technology atop a quantum-dot-enhanced back-light. It has a high peak brightness (1,000 cd/m2) and likely a good contrast ratio as well, although the latter number is unlisted. They also don’t mention how far into the expanded color palette the monitor can represent, but they clearly didn’t intend to announce it yet, so we’ll probably find out when they’re ready. The leaked press release does mention that it has 384 local-dimming zones, though.

We’ll need to wait for an official announcement to find out more.

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Source: VideoCardz

CES 2017: ASUS ProArt HDR and Designo Curve Monitors

Subject: Displays | January 4, 2017 - 02:30 PM |
Tagged: UHD, ProArt, PA32U, PA27AQ, MX38VQ, monitors, hdr, displays, Designo Curve, DCI-P3, CES 2017, CES, asus

ASUS has announced a pair of large monitors at CES, beginning with the impressive 32-inch ProArt PA32U, a UHD HDR Thunderbolt 3 display which offers 384 (direct) backlighting zones, 95% DCI-P3 coverage, and peak brightness of 1,000 nits.

IMG_6265.jpg

The ASUS ProArt PA32U

“The 32-inch ASUS ProArt PA32U is the world’s first professional direct-lit LED 4K UHD HDR monitor, delivering breathtaking levels of detail. It has a full-array LED backlight with the all-new ASUS LED-driving technology, featuring 384 LED zones and capable of a peak brightness of 1,000cd/m2, which offers a wide range of dynamic luminance for a much richer, nuanced image. The use of quantum dot technology provides a wide color gamut, enabling ProArt PA32U to deliver 99.5% Adobe RGB, 85% Rec. 2020, 100% sRGB and 95% DCI-P3 color-space performance for high-end video-editing and production.”

IMG_6268.jpg

HDR in full effect on the ProArt PA32U

The use of direct backlighting with individual zones - with what sounds like local dimming (“a wide range of dynamic luminance”) - should put the ProArt PA32U high on an HDR enthusiast’s list.

IMG_6270.jpg

Back view of the ProArt PA32U

Next we have the Designo Curve MX38VQ, a massive 37.5-inch monitor a 2300R curved IPS panel that boasts ultra-wide QHD (3840x1600) resolution. The MX38VQ also features a Harman Kardon branded 8-watt stereo speaker system and Qi wireless charging base built into the stand.

The ProArt PA32U will be available in Q3 2017, with pricing to fall in the $1799-$1999 range. The Designo Curve MX38VQ will also be available Q3 2017, with pricing set at $1099.

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Follow all of our coverage of the show at https://pcper.com/ces!

Source: ASUS

CES 2017: Acer Announces Predator Z301CT and XB2 Series Displays

Subject: Displays | January 3, 2017 - 06:06 PM |
Tagged: Predator, monitor, display, curved, CES 2017, CES, acer, 30-inch

Acer has announced a trio of Predator gaming monitors, beginning with the 30-inch Predator Z301CT display, which is "the world’s first 21:9 curved monitor with eye-tracking functionality". In addition to Tobii Eye Tracking this ultra-wide gaming monitor offers a curved 21:9 VA panel with a 200 Hz refresh rate, NVIDIA G-Sync variable refresh-rate support, and is equipped with Acer's "ErgoStand" full-motion stand (height, swivel, tilt).

Acer Predator Z301CT 1.jpg

Predator Z301CT Specifications:

  • Size: 30-inch 21:9 Gaming Monitor 
  • Curvature: 1800R
  • Panel Type: VA (8-bit)
  • Maximum Resolution: 2560x1080 @ 200Hz 
  • Refresh Rate: 200Hz
  • Response Time: 4ms 
  • Brightness: 300 cd/m2 
  • Contrast Ratio: 3,000:1 (Native) 
  • Color: 100% sRGB 
  • Colors: 16.7 Million
  • Support: Tobii Eye Tracking, NVIDIA G-Sync, Acer DarkBoost, BlueLightShield and Flicker-less Technologies 
  • Other Key Features: GameView OSD Navigation Key, Cable Management 
  • Viewing Angles: 178 Degrees (H) 178 Degrees (V) 
  • Input signal: DisplayPort v1.2a, HDMI v 1.4, USB Hub 3.0 x 4 (1 Up, 4 Down), Audio Out 
  • ErgoStand: Tilt -5 ~25 Degrees; Swivel +25 Degrees, Height Adjustment Up to 4.7 Inches 
  • Audio: Powerful DTS Sound, Two 3W Speakers 
  • VESA Wall Mounting: 100x100mm

The Predator Z301CT carries an MSRP of $899 and will be available in February.

Next we have the Predator XB2 Series, which includes the 24.5-inch Predator XB252Q and 27-inch Predator XB272.

Acer Predator XB2 pair.jpg

These 1920x1080 monitors offer NVIDIA G-Sync with NVIDIA's ULMB (Ultra Low Motion Blur) technology, 1 ms response time, and a 240 Hz refresh rate. Both displays feature Acer's "ZeroFrame" design with minimal bezels for multi-monitor setups and the same "ErgoStand" as the larger Z301CT above.

The two Predator XB2 Series displays have identical specs other than display size, including:

  • Design: ZeroFrame
  • Maximum resolution: 1920x1080 @ 240Hz
  • Refresh Rate: 240Hz
  • Response time: 1ms
  • Color: 100% sRGB
  • Panel Type: TN (8-bit)
  • Brightness: 400 cd/m2
  • Contrast Ratio: 1000:1
  • Support: NVIDIA G-Sync, NVIDIA ULMB, Acer Dark Boost, BlueLightShield and Flicker-less Technologies
  • Other Key Features: GameView OSD Navigation Key, Cable Clip
  • Viewing angles: 170 Degrees (H) 170 Degrees (V)
  • Input signal: DisplayPort v1.2, HDMI v 1.4, USB Hub 3.0 x 4 (1 up, 4 down), Audio Out
  • ErgoStand: Tilt -5 -20 Degrees; Swivel +45 Degrees, Height Adjustment 4.5 Inches, Pivot 90 Degrees Clockwise
  • Audio: Powerful DTS Sound, Two 2W Speakers
  • VESA Wall Mounting: 100x100mm

The XB2 Series displays will start at $549 (presumably for the 24.5-inch model) and will be available in February.

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Source: Acer

AMD FreeSync 2 Brings Latency, LFC and Color Space Requirements

Subject: Graphics Cards, Displays | January 3, 2017 - 09:00 AM |
Tagged: srgb, lfc, hdr10, hdr, freesync 2, freesync, dolby vision, color space, amd

Since the initial FreeSync launch in March of 2015, AMD has quickly expanded the role and impact that the display technology has had on the market. Technologically, AMD added low frame rate compensation (LFC) to mimic the experience of G-Sync displays, effectively removing the bottom limit to the variable refresh rate. LFC is an optional feature that requires a large enough gap between the displays minimum and maximum refresh rates to be enabled, but the monitors that do integrate it work well. Last year AMD brought FreeSync to HDMI connections too by overlaying the standard as an extension. This helped to expand the quantity and lower the price of available FreeSync options. Most recently, AMD announced that borderless windowed mode was being added as well, another feature-match to what NVIDIA can do with G-Sync.

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The biggest feather in the cap for AMD FreeSync is the sheer quantity of displays that exist on the market that support it. As of our briefing in early December, AMD claimed 121 design wins for FreeSync to just 18 for NVIDIA G-Sync. I am not often in the camp of quantity over quality, but the numbers are impressive. The pervasiveness of FreeSync monitors means that at least some of them are going to be very high quality integrations and that prices are going to be lower compared to the green team’s selection.

slides-14.jpg

Today AMD is announcing FreeSync 2, a new, concurrently running program that adds some new qualifications to displays for latency, color space and LFC. This new program will be much more hands-on from AMD, requiring per-product validation and certification and this will likely come at a cost. (To be clear, AMD hasn’t confirmed if that is the case to me yet.)

Let’s start with the easy stuff first: latency and LFC. FreeSync 2 will require monitors to support LFC and thus to have no effective bottom limit to their variable refresh rate. AMD will also instill a maximum latency allowable for FS2, on the order of “a few milliseconds” from frame buffer flip to photon. This can be easily measured with some high-speed camera work by both AMD and external parties (like us).

These are fantastic additions to the FreeSync 2 standard and should drastically increase the quality of panels and product.

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The bigger change to FreeSync 2 is on the color space. FS2 will require a doubling of the perceivable brightness and doubling of the viewable color volume based on the sRGB standards. This means that any monitor that has the FreeSync 2 brand will have a significantly larger color space and ~400 nits brightness. Current HDR standards exceed these FreeSync 2 requirements, but there is nothing preventing monitor vendors from exceeding these levels; they simply set a baseline that users should expect going forward.

slides-16.jpg

In addition to just requiring the panel to support a wider color gamut, FS2 will also enable user experience improvements as well. First, each FS2 monitor must communicate its color space and brightness ranges to the AMD driver through a similar communication path used today for variable refresh rate information. By having access to this data, AMD can enable automatic mode switches from SDR to HDR/wide color gamut based on the application. Windows can remain in a basic SDR color space but games or video applications that support HDR modes can enter that mode without user intervention.

slides-15.jpg

Color space mapping can take time in low power consumption monitors, adding potential latency. For movies that might not be an issue, but for enthusiast gamers it definitely is. The solution is to do all the tone mapping BEFORE the image data is sent to the monitor itself. But with varying monitors, varying color space limits and varying integrations of HDR standards, and no operating system level integration for tone mapping, it’s a difficult task.

The solution is for games to map directly to the color space of the display. AMD will foster this through FreeSync 2 – a game that integrates support for FS2 will be able to get data from the AMD driver stack about the maximum color space of the attached display. The engine can then do its tone mapping to that color space directly, rather than some intermediate state, saving on latency and improving the gaming experience. AMD can then automatically switch the monitor to its largest color space, as well as its maximum brightness. This does require the game engine or game developer to directly integrate support for this feature though – it will not be a catch-all solution for AMD Radeon users.

This combination of latency, LFC and color space additions to FreeSync 2 make it an incredibly interesting standard. Pushing specific standards and requirements on hardware vendors is not something AMD has had the gall to do the past, and honestly the company has publicly been very against it. But to guarantee the experience for Radeon gamers, AMD and the Radeon Technologies Group appear to be willing to make some changes.

slides-18.jpg

NVIDIA has yet to make any noise about HDR or color space requirements for future monitors and while the FreeSync 2 standards shown here don’t quite guarantee HDR10/Dolby Vision quality displays, they do force vendors to pay more attention to what they are building and create higher quality products for the gaming market.

All GPUs that support FreeSync will support FreeSync 2 and both programs will co-exist. FS2 is currently going to be built on DisplayPort and could find its way into another standard extension (as Adaptive Sync was). Displays are set to be available in the first half of this year.

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PC Perspective's CES 2017 coverage is sponsored by NVIDIA.

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Source: AMD

Lenovo Announces ThinkVision P27h and P24h Displays

Subject: Displays | December 28, 2016 - 12:01 AM |
Tagged: thinkvision, qhd, P27h, P24h, monitor, Lenovo, display, CES 2017, CES, calibrated, 2560x1440, 100% sRGB

Lenovo has announced a pair of new desktop displays with the ThinkVision P27h and ThinkVision P24h ahead of next month's CES.

ThinkVision P27h 1.jpg

ThinkVision P27h - front view (Image credit: Lenovo)

Both of these displays offer QHD (2560x1440) resolution, factory-calibrated with 100% sRGB coverage. The P27h and P24h connect with a single cable USB Type-C cable, which provides power, video, and data. Both monitors also offer an onboard 4-Port USB hub and digital display ports. (No photos of the P24h are available. Further details and specifications to come.)

ThinkVision P27h 2.jpg

ThinkVision P27h - rear view (Image credit: Lenovo)

The ThinkVision P27h will retail for $329, with no announced pricing for the smaller P24h just yet. PC Perspective will be closely covering CES 2017, so stay tuned for more details and product announcements!

Coverage of CES 2017 is brought to you by NVIDIA!

PC Perspective's CES 2017 coverage is sponsored by NVIDIA.

Follow all of our coverage of the show at http://pcper.com/ces!

Source: Lenovo

LG to Introduce Their First HDR Computer Monitor at CES

Subject: Displays | December 14, 2016 - 05:46 PM |
Tagged: monitor, LG, ips, high dynamic range, hdr, display, 4k

Ahead of CES 2017 LG has announced their upcoming monitor lineup, which features an HDR (high dynamic range) model. The 32UD99 is a 32-inch, 3840 x 2160 IPS display that offers 95% DCI-P3 color and HDR10 support. (Specifics as to peak brightness, rated black levels have not been released.)

LG_Monitors.jpg

From LG's press release (pdf):

“As the availability of HDR (high dynamic range) content continues to expand across a wide range of categories, from movies to games, LG is leading the way in bringing this enhancement to desktop monitors,” said to Tim Alessi, head of product marketing at LG Electronics USA. “The enhanced picture quality offered by HDR technology is instantly recognizable to even the most casual user, and manufacturers are already pushing this promising technology to its fullest potential. From high-resolution displays compatible with HDR technology, to UltraWide monitors optimized for multitasking and gaming, LG is committed to delivering the most state-of-the-art and premium monitors in the industry today.” 

HDR is a somewhat complex standard, incorporating requirements for bit depth and supported color space, brightness level, and black levels for the display - along with compatibility with one of the HDR standards; HDR10 or Dolby Vision. The fact that LG is using IPS for their new montior seems problematic given the high black levels associated with IPS (unless sophisticated local dimming is employed, such as with LG's Infinia televisions of a few years ago), as most HDR sets employ a VA panel of some kind. Of note, rival Panasonic only recently announced their work on very high native contrast IPS panels, but there is no indication that LG has developed a similar technology at this point.

HDR is all the rage in the 4K television world, and for gaming both Sony and Microsoft's latest consoles support the more common HDR10 implementation - with compatible games, UHD Blu-ray, and streaming content, that is. It was inevitable that HDR would make its way into the computer display space, and presumably more and more PC games will be offering support going forward (Shadow Warrior 2 was the first title to support HDR on PC). A quick primer on HDR (with respect to the "Premium" standard from the UHD Alliance) can be found here, and only time will tell if the HDR10 standard will win out over Dolby Vision, though at this point it seems likely.

Source: LG