Dell U3415W 34-Inch Ultra-Wide Curved Monitor Review

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If you’re still skeptical after reading this, don’t worry, we were too until we actually worked with a curved screen. We weren’t sure about the 21:9 aspect ratio either, but as it turns out, while outside the mainstream, both features are pretty cool. Our only real beef so far is the price of admission. For the $1000 you’d spend on the LG 34UC97 or the Dell U3415W, you can get a decent 32-inch Ultra HD screen like the BenQ BL3201PT.

You’re definitely paying extra for the unusual shape of this display. And if you think you might like a monitor that fills your peripheral vision at a two or three foot viewing distance, the curve really enhances that wrap-around feeling. Though we haven’t had an opportunity to try a two- or three-screen setup using the U3415W, it looks like it would be super-cool. It’s probably the cheapest way to create your own flight simulator. And first-person shooter games would be equally amazing.

The other major feature you’re paying for in Dell’s case is a super-accurate monitor. We’ve reviewed many factory-calibrated products but none have posted the out-of-box numbers that we recorded today. The .51dE score for grayscale is the lowest in our database to date. And only the NEC EA244UHD can narrowly beat it in the color gamut test. That and the U3415W are the only two displays we’ve ever measured under one Delta E before calibration.

Unlike the vast majority of monitors, we were unable to improve upon the results with a calibration. Even though Dell provides color hue and saturation controls, and even a two-point white balance control, we couldn’t do any better. That is mainly due to the U3415W’s single flaw, its gamma.

In the Standard mode, there are two small dips in an otherwise ruler-straight tracking chart. Unfortunately, in the Custom Color mode (where adjustments are possible), the starting gamma doesn’t track as well and runs a bit light. If Dell added a gamma editor, this issue could be easily fixed. Of course, many professionals will simply generate a software LUT to dial in all image parameters; at which point the gamma becomes perfect.

Even with a $1000 price tag, we consider the U3415W a good value based on out-of-box accuracy and image quality alone. The ultra-wide aspect and curved screen are bonuses in our opinion. After working with several 21:9 displays, we like both the extra width as well as the curve. If this review still has you asking “why?” please consider trying one out for yourself — it’s difficult to put the experience into words.

Obviously, you get a nice bit of extra screen real estate, and the QHD resolution at 109ppi is ideal for many users. The curve simply provides a little higher degree of comfort than a 21:9 flat screen or multi-monitor desktop. And if you want even more width, the U3415W has that handy DisplayPort output allowing you to connect two screens via one cable.

It’s obvious we like the Dell U3415W very much. It’s a quality product all the way, and you’ll be hard-pressed to find a more accurate display. Coupled with premium build quality and a flexible set of professional-grade features, there’s no doubt it’s earned our Editor Recommended award.

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Christian Eberle
Contributing Editor

Christian Eberle is a Contributing Editor for Tom's Hardware US. He's a veteran reviewer of A/V equipment, specializing in monitors. Christian began his obsession with tech when he built his first PC in 1991, a 286 running DOS 3.0 at a blazing 12MHz. In 2006, he undertook training from the Imaging Science Foundation in video calibration and testing and thus started a passion for precise imaging that persists to this day. He is also a professional musician with a degree from the New England Conservatory as a classical bassoonist which he used to good effect as a performer with the West Point Army Band from 1987 to 2013. He enjoys watching movies and listening to high-end audio in his custom-built home theater and can be seen riding trails near his home on a race-ready ICE VTX recumbent trike. Christian enjoys the endless summer in Florida where he lives with his wife and Chihuahua and plays with orchestras around the state.

  • tom10167
    "3440x2160" Anyone else getting tired of seeing this site report glaring errors in almost everything they publish?
  • It's 3440x1440 pixels @ 60 Hz refresh rate. It's also $899.99 on Amazon not $1199.00.
  • SirGCal
    Unless I missed it, no mention of sync of either flavor. I'm not buying a new display without one or the other. I've noticed it so much nicer in every enabled task, not just gaming.
  • oj88
    Judging by its size and price, Dell could have made U3415W a 4K (4096x2160) monitor.
  • HideOut
    Thats not 4K. and no, it has no sync. This is more of a pro grade monitor, not a high FPS gamer
  • GoZFast
    2x9w speakers o.o That a lot for integrated speakers My samsung tv 27'' has 2x2w.
  • GoZFast
    Dell already have 5K monitors but this one is aimed at artistic professionals.
    Newegg has it for $799.99 with coupon code:
  • GoZFast
    Well, too bad, its 1220$ here in Canada. I guess I will add it to my list when shopping in NY next time lol Dell brand 34'' ~4K monitor 10bit pro panel with ok speakers is pretty decent for 799$. Its a good tv with those inputs for a small room.
  • Tanquen
    IPS = :)

    Curved = :(

    21:9 = :(

    34” = :( It’s too darn short for a widescreen display. My 30” 2560x1600 already has a taller res.

    “By curving the screen just a little, the extra width fits better into the user’s peripheral vision, and reduces the amount of head-turning necessary to see the entire desktop.” Wow, just wow! This is just so wrong.

    “the image is not distorted in any way.”
    It may not be enough to notice but it totally distorts the screen and nothing you view on it will be shot in such a way. The larger TVs totally have a bowtie effect going on and it’s a total gimmick.