By now, 4K is gaining some serious mainstream traction, but it won't yet make its way to desks the way 1080p monitors have done over the last few years. AOC's new monitor won't make that happen either, though it does come with a very friendly price tag. Meet the AOC U2870VQE, a 4K monitor that comes in at $499 (or less -- more on that in a moment).
The U2870VQE isn't a monitor that comes with a fancy IPS panel and highly-flexible stand; instead, it takes things back to the basics with a simple, high-quality TN panel and a stand that only supports tilting. The panel is 28" on the diagonal and is capable of displaying the 3840 x 2160 pixel resolution at a refresh rate of 60 Hz.
The panel itself is an 8-bit (meaning it can display 16.7 million colors), but the monitor can accept 10-bit signals and will display them using a technique called Temporal Dithering, also referred to as Frame Rate Control. In short, the controller will make the display switch back and forth between two close colors, making you see the color that would be in between, kind of like mixing two different colors of paint.
AOC boasts a 70,000,000:1 contrast ratio, but that's the dynamic contrast ratio with variable backlighting. The static contrast ratio is 1000:1, which is about as standard as one gets on a TN film. Maximum brightness sits at 300 cd/m2, and viewing angles are 170 degrees horizontal and 160 degrees vertical.
Display inputs consist of VGA, DisplayPort, Mini-DisplayPort, and HDMI with MHL support. The monitor does not have any built-in speakers, audio outputs, or USB ports. The display's frame is made of plastic, but it has a neat matte brushed aluminum appearance, and the panel itself is matte, too.
Overall, the one thing to say about the monitor is that it is a straight-to-the-point 4K monitor without any bells and whistles that drive up the price.
MSRP pricing sits at $499, but AOC informed us that the monitor is listed at MicroCenter for the very attractive price of $349.