I’ve rounded up a group of 34-inch ultra-wide screens to compare the Dark Matter 42772’s performance. All are VA panels, except the BenQ EX3415R, which uses an IPS part. The others are MSI’s MPG323CQR, Gigabyte’s G34WQC, BenQ’s EX3410R and Viotek’s GNV34DBE. They run at either 144 or 165 Hz.
Pixel Response and Input Lag
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In the response test, we can see that 165 Hz is not a guarantee of smoother movement. The MSI draws in 7ms like the 144 Hz screens. I ran the 42772’s tests at both 144 and 165 Hz because 165 locks out the overdrive. This creates a black ghosting artifact that I found distracting. Ultimately, I preferred the look of 144 Hz with the overdrive set to maximum. It was a worthwhile compromise to sacrifice 1ms of response and 2ms of control lag. To a gamer of average skill, 31 or 33ms will look and feel the same. However, the top three screens will give a competitive advantage to some players.
The 42772 isn’t the most shareable monitor thanks to its VA panel, which only offers mediocre off-axis image quality. At 45 degrees off-center, brightness is cut in half and the image becomes flat with a slight shift to red. Similar results can be seen in the top-down photo. This is clearly a one-person screen.
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I divided the screen into nine zones for this test, and with the room lights off, I could see a very subtle glow in the middle left and lower left areas of my 42772’s screen. The measurements were around 50% higher for a completely black field. While this anomaly was visible in test patterns, it did not distract during gameplay. I also observed no color aberration or variation in tones at higher brightness levels.