We test an ultra-widescreen curved monitor by Philips. How does the 21:9 aspect ratio screen perform for everyday work, multimedia, and gaming?
Monitors with a screen of 21:9 format have recently become quite popular. Some of their biggest advantages include great multitasking capabilities or a better experience when watching movies. Ultra widescreen monitors also provide a wider field of view when playing computer games.
No wonder that more and more manufacturers offer this type of monitors and although these devices are often more expensive than standard monitors, there is no shortage of people who decide to buy them.
Philips 346P1CRH is an interesting proposal from the Dutch manufacturer. The large 34-inch monitor is distinguished by a compact and seemingly durable design. Along with the large size of the device also goes a considerable weight, which, however, greatly affects its stability. A relatively small bezel enhances the impression created by the wide screen, and the whole is emphasized by the front panel imitating brushed aluminum. A big curiosity is a top-mounted webcam with support for Windows Hello function.
A large number of ports available on the monitor should be counted as a huge plus. In addition to DisplayPort and HDMI ports placed on the back of the case, there is also a built-in USB Type-C docking station. We can connect it to other devices such as laptops or smartphones and charge them at the same time. In addition, the manufacturer has added a number of additional inputs on the side of the monitor. Among them there are 4 USB 3.1 ports, as well as RJ-45 (LAN).
The user can conveniently adjust both the angle of inclination of the monitor and its height. The large, square base, meanwhile, allows for smooth rotation around its own axis of up to 360 degrees.
Screen and experience
As we mentioned earlier, the Philips 346P1CRH has a 34-inch UltraWide curved screen with a display aspect ratio of 21:9. For its production, the manufacturer used a VA matrix with a resolution of 3440×1440 pixels. This solution, although not perfect (the display backlight is not equal in all parts of the screen), translates into a high contrast ratio of 3000:1 and brightness reaching 500 nits. Wide color reproduction with a clear accentuation of black makes the monitor ideal for movies and graphic design work. The device proves to be also helpful in case of everyday work. On a 21:9 screen without any loss of quality we can put two documents, web pages or whatever else comes to mind side by side.
Unfortunately, the VA panel means a relatively high response time, amounting in the case of the described monitor to 4ms. Although this value is quite enough for standard gaming, more demanding gamers and those who call themselves “esports players” may feel a lack of comfort. Also the refresh rate of 100Hz may not meet the high requirements of professional players, however for an ordinary “Kowalski” these values are fully acceptable. It is worth remembering, however, that Philips 346P1CRH focuses on versatility and does not aspire in any way to be called a “gaming monitor”.
This does not mean, however, that we will not see any advanced technologies that affect the visual experience. The ultra widescreen Philips 346P1CRH boasts The adaptive synchronization function enables the monitor to display smooth, distortion-free images at virtually any frame rate.
There’s also the familiar Flicker-free solution from the Dutch brand’s other devices, which corrects brightness and reduces flicker for more comfortable viewing.
The monitor can also operate in LowBlue Mode and even supports PowerSensor technology. This one is interesting in that it works like a “people sensor” that transmits and receives harmless infrared signals to determine the user’s presence in the room, and automatically lowers the brightness level of the monitor’s display when the user walks away from the desk.
The Philips 346P1CRH is a great option for people who value comfort while working and high image quality. The monitor will also prove useful for watching movies and even playing computer games. What is important – its price which is approx. 2475 PLN is relatively low, taking into account the supported resolution of 3440×1440 and additional equipment in the form of a built-in camera, speakers or a connector station. So if you have been considering the purchase of an ultra widescreen monitor – you have just found a good candidate.