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Monoprice Zero-G 35-Inch Gaming Monitor Review: A Curved Ultra-Wide Bargain

At this price, 21:9 gaming doesn't get much better.

(Image: © Monoprice)

To read about our monitor tests in-depth, check out Display Testing Explained: How We Test Monitors and TVs. We cover brightness and contrast testing on page two.

Uncalibrated – Maximum Backlight Level

To put the Zero-G 35’s performance in perspective, we have three curved ultra-wides and two curved 16:9 screens in the 27-inch size. There's the LG 34GK950F, a premium screen with HDR. Also, at the high end of the price scale is the ViewSonic XG350R-C. At a lower price point is the MSI MAG341CQ. The least-expensive curved screens are the two 27-inch, 16:9 panels, the Pixio PXC273 and Samsung 27-inch CRG5. All monitors use VA panels, except the LG, which has IPS.

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(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)
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(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)

Monoprice specs the Zero-G 35 at 300 nits, but our sample measured 378 nits with the brightness maxed. That’s plenty of light for any application or environment. If HDR were added in the future, the panel would only need a small bump in output to earn VESA’s DisplayHDR 400 certification.

Black levels are quite low at just 0.1225 nit with the backlight on its highest setting. That delivers a static contrast ratio of 3085.3:1; higher than many other VA displays. The Monoprice has excellent image depth, and once the gamma is set to a higher value, it looks even better.

After Calibration to 200 nits

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(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)
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Our calibration settings (see the previous page) moved the Zero-G 35 up one spot in the standings for the Maximum Black Luminance test with a 0.08 nit score. Contrast was a bit lower after adjustments but still above-average at 2,484.9:1. This is excellent performance. In the intra-image test, the ratio stayed solid at 2,427.6:1. The difference between the static and ANSI ratios is too small to be seen by the naked eye, which speaks to Monoprice’s excellent engineering and quality control. This may be an inexpensive monitor, but it delivers superb contrast with all content.

MORE: Best Gaming Monitors

MORE: How We Test Monitors

MORE: All Monitor Content

  • cryoburner
    If it's zero-g, why does it need a stand? <_<

    Are a lack of speakers really a con though? The speakers included in monitors are usually pretty bad. If you want speakers of that quality, you can probably find a set for $10 somewhere. Most gamers will likely be using either a headset or better speakers anyway.

    Perhaps more worth noting would be that the limited FreeSync range means you won't get LFC to keep adaptive sync working when framerates dip below 48 fps. And while you might consider the resolution to be low enough to still get decent performance on "mid-priced" graphics cards, we're still talking about 2.4x the resolution of 1080p here, or nearly 35% more pixels than 1440p, so even with a $400 graphics card, performance is bound to dip into that range at times in some of the most demanding games with the settings turned up.
    Reply
  • DookieDraws
    Thanks for the review! Researching for a new monitor, and these reviews are helpful. Would love to see you review the AOC CU34G2X monitor soon. I guess you can call it a budget monitor, but it does have some pretty nice looking specs.
    Reply
  • mrv_co
    cryoburner said:
    If it's zero-g, why does it need a stand? <_<

    Are a lack of speakers really a con though? The speakers included in monitors are usually pretty bad. If you want speakers of that quality, you can probably find a set for $10 somewhere. Most gamers will likely be using either a headset or better speakers anyway.

    Perhaps more worth noting would be that the limited FreeSync range means you won't get LFC to keep adaptive sync working when framerates dip below 48 fps. And while you might consider the resolution to be low enough to still get decent performance on "mid-priced" graphics cards, we're still talking about 2.4x the resolution of 1080p here, or nearly 35% more pixels than 1440p, so even with a $400 graphics card, performance is bound to dip into that range at times in some of the most demanding games with the settings turned up.

    Yep, I consider no built-in speakers a feature.
    Reply
  • drivinfast247
    Dang! At that price I'll probably pick one up to hold me off till a few of the newly announced monitors at CES actually release.
    Reply