LG 34UM95 34-Inch Ultra-Wide QHD Monitor Review

When we looked at 29-inch ultra-wide displays last year, we asked for greater size and more pixels. LG answers that request with its 34UM95, a 34-inch panel with a resolution of 3440x1440. Today we run it through our performance and usability analysis.

Last year LG introduced the first ultra-wide monitor we’d ever seen, the 29EA93. With a 21:9 aspect ratio, the screen tried answering a question we weren’t sure anyone was asking. But after reviewing two competing displays based on the same panel, NEC’s EA294WMi and AOC’s Q2963PM, we came away with some fresh ways to work with this new concept in monitors.

My own experience, along with feedback from the Tom's Hardware community, told me that there were two main problems with the 2560x1080, 29-inch form factor. Number one was a lack of pixel density. With only 1080 pixels of vertical resolution, it proved difficult to use for Web browsing and word processing. The second issue was overall screen size. Even if it had greater pixel density, a 29-inch ultra-wide is only 11.4 inches in height, resulting in too-little screen real estate for most tasks other than gaming or movie-watching.

Today we get our first look at LG’s second-generation ultra-wide display, the 34UM95, which purports to address at least one of those two shortcomings.

MSRP
$1000
Panel Type
AH-IPS
Backlight
W-LED, edge array
Screen Size
34-inch
Max Resolution
3440x1440
Max Refresh Rate
60 Hz
Aspect Ratio
21:9
Native Color Depth
10-bit (8-bit w/FRC)
Native Gamut
sRGB
Response Time (GTG)
14 ms
Brightness
320 cd/m2
Speakers
-
VGA
-
DVI
-
DisplayPort v1.2
1
HDMI v1.4
2
Thunderbolt
2
Audio In
-
Headphone
1
USB
v3.0 - 1 up, 3 down
Media Card Reader
-
Panel Dimensions
W x H x D w/base
32.7 x 18.5 x 6.8 in
824 x 466 x 171 mm
Panel Thickness
1.9 in / 48 mm
Bezel Width
.4-.8 in / 11-20 mm
Weight
17 lbs / 7.7 kg
Warranty
One year

First (and most obviously), LG takes a major step in the right direction with increased size and resolution. Now you get the same screen height as a 27-inch QHD display and the very same 109 PPI density. It wields all of the same advantages, plus a bonus 7.75 inches of screen width. If you were considering a dual-screen setup before, a display like this one warrants a serious look.

Whether you have a high-performance gaming rig begging for a multi-monitor configuration or you just want some extra screen real estate for productivity-oriented workloads, the biggest bummer about using two or three monitors is the bezel interruption between panels. Even displays with no bezel still have a frame around the picture. Current LCD technology seems to have no solution, so we’ve accepted the compromise for now.

Really, then, the decision between two 27-inch QHD screens versus one 34-inch ultra-wide comes down to total screen area and how badly you want to get rid of the bezel. Two 27-inch 16:9 displays yield 623 square inches, while the 34-inch ultra-wide totals 419. Now that the 34UM95 offers the same pixel density, it becomes a more fair comparison.

Aside from the ultra-wide aspect ratio, this is a fairly typical IPS-based monitor. The color gamut is sRGB with a White-LED backlight. To facilitate better utilization of the extra width, an application is included to help manage window sizing in up to four zones on the screen. The HDMI inputs are MHL-compatible, so you can easily window the output from a phone or tablet along with your computer desktop.

Along with our usual performance benchmarks, we’ll test the usability of the 34UM95. It promises to be a unique experience. Let’s take a closer look.

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28 comments
    Your comment
  • InfinityPixels
    I want this so bad.
    6
  • rantoc
    4k gaming is amazing but demand alot from the computer hardware. Just got a dell 3214 and its hard to describe how much better the picture/emersion is with the way higher definition in the picture quality and still came from descent 2560x1600 before that.

    Playing on "full" hd (LD? Low definition) feels like a joke once you get to know uhd/4k
    -7
  • wtfxxxgp
    Rantoc, what does your comment have to do with the article? Seems to me that you were waiting for an opportunity to brag about your new monitor... Glad you got that out of your system. lol

    With regards to this monitor...I LOVE the looks...very elegant. I think the price tag is fitting as well - it has great resolution and there are still plenty of people who are gaming on 60hz displays that may have just enough GPU power to actually game at this thing's native resolution, albeit with slightly lower settings. GG LG!
    3
  • ubercake
    Great to see larger-sized higher-than-HD res monitors.
    8
  • Nossy
    For a grand, you can get two Asus PB278Q.
    1
  • cknobman
    $1000?

    Next
    -1
  • xPandaPanda
    I have this monitor. Because of it's cinema format, market age, lower production numbers, and early adoption as competitors haven't offered this yet, it is reasonable to think this monitor would cost this much--a lot.

    It would have been nice to include what revision this is, because LG is aware of uniformity issues, which is why the product was largely on backorder and a Rev.2 is in place (but Rev. 2 didn't fix the problem either). My first one had a glaring Uniformity problem, but LG is cool and offered an advanced exchange. The new one has some uniformity problem, but it is very 'livable' and discrete.

    Overall, I am pleased with this product. I have a single 780 to push this and it works nicely. If I got a 4k monitor, I'd have performance issues as the GPU as a whole sector is behind.
    1
  • eklipz330
    as a pc gamer who has been playing for ~15 years, i have to say that this is one of the biggest changes that i've seen on the pc platform. this is a big step towards bringing pc back to relevancy. it's something that will be held to acclaim in productive and gaming environments. in fact, the only thing that i'm surprised that they didn't do is make it curved, simply because when a user sets up a multi-monitor setup, they set the outside monitors at an angle. this makes curved monitor solutions make sense more so than tvs, especially since curved monitors benefit solo users the most. im shocked they didnt make it curved. probably going to cash in next year on that.

    seriously though, pc monitors have been lacking for some years now, falling behind in innovation and technology in general(phones have been jacking up their screen quality year after year, we've been stuck since like 2005). i bet 21:9 screens will have the biggest penetration on PCs.
    6
  • josejones
    Why still the old HDMI 1.4 instead of HDMI 2.0 and DisplayPort 1.2 instead of the new 1.4 ???
    -1
  • Jamie Blumenfeld
    Wish this was 1600 pixels tall. Don't get the fascination with XX:9 at all.
    0
  • mikeangs2004
    don't post spam
    -2
  • Phillip Wager
    i want this bad its a good compromise of between high framerate and high pixel count. honestly for gaming i would just run 2560x1440 but i would run the full resolution for the desktop
    0
  • SessouXFX
    This monitor...it's been at the top of my list for nearly a month now. I know most gamers would prefer to see something with a better aspect ratio, and certainly better response and refresh time. But if you use your monitor for more than gaming, say watching movies, streaming on twitch, and using multiple applications at a time, I'm not sure how you can ignore it as a possibility.
    1
  • photonboy
    21:9 ->
    This is simply a horrible aspect ratio for most people.

    The problem is that if you can see the entire monitor without moving your head then 16:9 is the proper ratio to maximize viewing area such as 3840x2160.

    Ultrawide really only makes sense if it's WIDER than what you can see without moving your head. For that, I'd rather have more than one monitor.

    Ultrawide for gaming makes little sense. Screens need to be curved, or have multiple angled monitors with minimal gap but a single super-wide screen just doesn't work.

    *If you really think about it, it's hard to justify the 21:9 ratio.
    0
  • SessouXFX
    67821 said:
    21:9 -> This is simply a horrible aspect ratio for most people. The problem is that if you can see the entire monitor without moving your head then 16:9 is the proper ratio to maximize viewing area such as 3840x2160. Ultrawide really only makes sense if it's WIDER than what you can see without moving your head. For that, I'd rather have more than one monitor. Ultrawide for gaming makes little sense. Screens need to be curved, or have multiple angled monitors with minimal gap but a single super-wide screen just doesn't work. *If you really think about it, it's hard to justify the 21:9 ratio.

    Don't knock it, if you haven't tried it. Seen the demos of this screen with 21:9, it's quite impressive looking, compared to the other ratios out there. At the very least, it's more compelling than given credit for.
    2
  • Home-World
    What to see the same density as 4k, the ultra wide is the way forward for me buy one instantly
    0
  • moogleslam
    This size/format needs G-Sync and a faster refresh rate, then it would be perfect for my gaming needs.
    0
  • somebodyspecial
    Next time, ask for an ULTRA TALL monitor. So we don't have to scroll too much. You know, just get back to 2560x1600. 1440p sucks and going further with width doesn't help my browsing etc. There's a premium on 1600P right now just because of all this 1440p crap taking over. How many people are using spreadsheets all day? Some width is ok but I'd rather have tall and more monitors to get more width (2 or 3 screens) vs. splitting crap on one HUGE wide screen. Give me 2 or 3 1600p 27/30inchers and I'd be happy to drop different apps on each or run games.

    Impressive LOOKING and impressive FUNCTIONALITY are two different things ;) I'm not saying wide isn't good for SOME applications, but not for the majority of us. Not sure where monitor makers are getting their data, but I don't think they're asking the right people what we users want :)
    0
  • ubercake
    ...

    374745 said:
    This size/format needs G-Sync and a faster refresh rate, then it would be perfect for my gaming needs.


    That's what I'm thinking. It seems like the wider the screen resolution the more perceivable tearing is. G-sync would help this situation. Acer is supposed to be releasing a 4K G-sync monitor in the next 6 months or so:
    http://www.geforce.com/whats-new/articles/nvidia-g-sync-monitors-unveiled-shipping-soon-worldwide
    0
  • dehcbad25
    I had the 29UM95, and I am writing from that monitor. Christian...WHAT USERS WERE COMPLAINING ABOUT THE SIZE? I can buy 2 29UM95 for the price of 1 34UM95.
    Granted the 34" will have its uses and applications, but from the UWHD I don't think it will be the most sold. the 27" might be too small, but 29" is perfect for 2650x1080. BTW, I do game in this monitor too, and I work on it TOO
    0