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ViewSonic VP3881 38" Curved HDR Monitor Review: Professional sRGB

OSD Setup & Calibration

The VP3881 has a myriad of calibration options and a long feature list, tackling nearly all professional needs while also addressing general use and gaming. 

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Pressing any key brings up a quick menu giving you access to color modes, luminance sliders and inputs. The fourth button summons the full OSD, which is divided into six sections, beginning with the input selector. The Auto Detect function works quickly to lock onto the first active signal it finds. Audio Adjust controls volume and mute and can select a source too. In addition to the analog input, you can hear sound over both DisplayPort and HDMI connections.

ViewMode should not be confused with the color presets; they are separate. The modes are task-specific, some with sub-options for different game types, or photography environments. If you want to take advantage of the factory-calibrated color, this option should be left off.

Color Adjust contains a large array of calibration controls. After the standard contrast and brightness sliders, you can choose either RGB or YUV color formats along with full or limited dynamic range. This makes the VP3881 compatible with every kind of signal from computers and AV sources alike.

Standard Color is where you’ll find gamut-specific modes. We tested sRGB and Rec.709 along with the fully-adjustable Custom option. You also get EBU, SMPTE-C (the current color standard for broadcasting in America) and DICOM-SIM (appropriate for displaying medical images) support. These modes cannot be altered, but you’ll find them extremely accurate right out of the box.

In the Custom section, you can alter every aspect of the image. There are five color temp presets, plus a user mode that includes both gain and bias sliders. You can tweak color with hue and saturation controls. Five gamma presets offer excellent tracking at their indicated levels. The different color modes utilize various gamma standards, which we’ll show you on page four. If you use ViewSonic’s Colorbration package, you can save your adjustments to one of three memories.

Manual Image Adjust has the remaining picture options like aspect, sharpness, overscan and gaming options. Even on the highest response setting and with low input lag engaged, the VP3881 is no gaming monitor. It won’t replace a fast-refresh screen.

Uniformity compensation is available for the preset color modes but not in Custom. It cuts both output and contrast by about half. The monitor measured well enough without it, so we left it off during the review. HDR10 must be engaged manually when the proper signal is present.

The Setup menu delivers all remaining options and OSD controls. You get a long list of languages, timeout and transparency. The multi-picture sub-menu has PIP and PBP for viewing multiple video sources. All Recall will return all settings to their factory defaults. Signal info shows only resolution and refresh information; it would be nice to see the color mode and, more importantly, HDR status.

Calibration

Although calibrating the VP3881 is unnecessary, there are multiple ways to do it. The easiest option is to select a factory color mode. They are all extremely accurate and will allow brightness adjustments once uniformity compensation is turned off. To tweak in the OSD, select Custom. You’ll be locked into the sRGB color gamut but have full control of color temperature and gamma. We managed a few tiny gains with our adjustments, but they satisfy ego more than anything else.

Here are the settings we came up with:

ViewSonic VP3881 Calibration Settings
Picture ModeCustom
Brightness 200 nits60
Brightness 120 nits30
Brightness 100 nits22
Brightness 80 nits14
Brightness 50 nits4
Contrast70
Gamma2.2
Color Temp UserRed 100, Green 98, Blue 95

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  • emeraldsmines1990
    To all Monitors makers , we demand more height wide screens ... stop focusing on gaming monitors and bring us please WIDE AND TALL Monitors.

    For productivity , that is :

    3840 x 2400 Resolution and not Curved.

    Reply
  • Rushnerd
    I have one of these except it's acer and way cheaper. It's taller than my old 27" and the resolution, while not true 4K, is still more than enough, especially trying to run games faster than 75hz.
    Plus the curve on this thing is pretty subtle and with a panel this wide, it's pretty helpful.
    Reply
  • WINTERLORD
    i agree i really like the monitor reviews they have here at toms hardware. in paticuler the gaming and HDR and even budget HDR
    Reply
  • photonboy
    EMERALDSMINES1990,
    Uh...what do you mean by "wide and tall" anyway?

    Wide and Ultrawide are references to the Aspect Ratio being more wide than it is tall. You can't be both wider and taller at the same time in terms of Aspect.

    Or maybe you just mean physically wider (i.e. 30"+) while having both high pixel density and 16:10 (less wide) aspect ratio?

    Also, being CURVED is a necessity for most if the monitor is PHYSICALLY TOO WIDE regardless of Aspect Ratio... of course you can sit further BACK from the monitor so you don't keep turning your head off axis and distorting the text so much but that defeats the purpose too of getting a large monitor.

    And is there really that much demand for 16:10 these days? If you had something like a 30", 3840x2160 (4K) monitor there's lots of pixels to work with. Does it really need to be TALLER than this?

    I think the original point of 16:10 was that two 8:10 pages could be next to each other but then when 16:9 became standard games and video optimized for this ratio so the demand really dropped.

    I guess I just don't see much demand for super large, 16:10 monitors.
    Reply
  • hotaru251
    assume they meant they want screens like in CRT days...

    where you have a more square (ish) screen ratehr than a longer only screen.


    I could udnerstand not wanting a screen that is 3x as long as it is tall.
    Reply
  • totaldarknessincar
    Dear Monitor makers and Tomshardware.

    We don't want to read reviews of monitors with technology we have seen before. the LG 38UC99 came out 2 years ago. Then we had the ACER 38 inch ultrawide. Then we had the HP 38 inch ultrawide, followed by the Dell 38 inch ultrawide, there may have been another company, even LG updated the 38uc99 to make way for 38WK95C; and now viewsonic.

    They are all base on LG's screen, they are all missing displayport 1.4 for some odd reason despite the 1000-1300 premium price rage and displayport 1.4 has been certified for years now. They are are barely able to get 75 refreshes, they all are freesync only, despite NVIDIA GPUs dominating the high end space, they are don't have wide, DCI P3 color gamuts, they are have crappy contrast ration that in practice is only like 800:1, they all aren't bright, peaking at about 300 nits, and they all are curved.


    Please wake me up when we have
    38 inch ultrawide or any 38 inch monitor
    that is not curved
    That can do 100hz minimum
    That is truly 4K (i'm not paying 1300 for a monitor that i plan on having for 6+ years (I bought a dell u3011 in 2010 and I'm still using it now (8 years)). 4K will for sure be the standard in 6-8 years for most medium to high end monitors and to already not have it, is setting yourself up for failure.
    -It needs to have at least 600 nits
    -HDR
    -Basically take that LG 5K monitor that is about to come out, that is 34 inches, and increase the size, increase the refresh, add HDR, add displayport 1.4 and we are set.
    Reply
  • emeraldsmines1990
    21139859 said:
    EMERALDSMINES1990,
    Uh...what do you mean by "wide and tall" anyway?

    Wide and Ultrawide are references to the Aspect Ratio being more wide than it is tall. You can't be both wider and taller at the same time in terms of Aspect.

    Or maybe you just mean physically wider (i.e. 30"+) while having both high pixel density and 16:10 (less wide) aspect ratio?

    Also, being CURVED is a necessity for most if the monitor is PHYSICALLY TOO WIDE regardless of Aspect Ratio... of course you can sit further BACK from the monitor so you don't keep turning your head off axis and distorting the text so much but that defeats the purpose too of getting a large monitor.

    And is there really that much demand for 16:10 these days? If you had something like a 30", 3840x2160 (4K) monitor there's lots of pixels to work with. Does it really need to be TALLER than this?

    I think the original point of 16:10 was that two 8:10 pages could be next to each other but then when 16:9 became standard games and video optimized for this ratio so the demand really dropped.

    I guess I just don't see much demand for super large, 16:10 monitors.

    For Productivity 4:3 is the best . and if you look at Famous Tablet makers they realized that 4:3 is the best and Apple IPAD is 4:3 the same as Samsung Tab S3 ...

    it is the best for productivity, when they moved to wide screens 16:9/16:10 (FHD) people loved it for watching movies mostly nothing more.

    4:3 is the best , and the Tablet makers figured it out very well.

    Samsung Tab s3

    9.7” QXGA (2048 x 1536)

    4:3

    and Ipad Pro

    2224x1668

    4:3 as well.

    and I personally like to game on 4:3 because I want to see more vertical the same I want to see more horizontal.

    Even the MS surface is 2256 x 1504 (3:2)

    Edit : Let me explain more why 4:3 is better than wide screens for work ..

    first of all if one application , you will have bigger space to work with all directions .

    now for multi windows , in wide screen , people will split it left right and never up down because it is wide.

    here each part on right and left , will need to scroll in all directions because the width is half and the height is lower than 4:3 ..

    However , if you have 4:3 monitor and you split the screen up and down using two apps , Both will have full width and the only scrolling you will need is up and down , not all directions. Also , having the width maximized in the upper up and lower app , is much easier to work with and monitor.

    and so on.
    Reply
  • therealduckofdeath
    Try an Ultrawide first, EMERALDSMINES1990. You'll realise that a huge 4:3 display is exceptionally bad for productivity. You'll ruin your neck in a few days as our heads and eyes move excellently from side to side while they don't enjoy up and down as much. If a 4:3 display would be as wide as this it would have to be placed on the floor to work ergonomically.

    The Ultrawide makes sense, as you get more workspace without having to split your area over two displays. The curve also makes sense as it counters the warping effect you otherwise get with that much display so close to your face.
    Reply
  • Rushnerd
    emeraldsmines1990 "I personally like to game on 4:3 because I want to see more vertical the same I want to see more horizontal."
    I can do 4:3 in considerable size on my 38" Acer display, but the "productivity" you mentioned? This monitor is equal to over 3 1080p monitors and the size gets around 4K scaling issues.

    If you haven't tried ultrawide gaming yet, you really should. That said i've been playing some 4:3 games lately, and other 4:3 ones modded for ultrawide, it's great.

    I also want to add that I thought a 38" 3840X1600 monitor was completely overkill and too much, but it's even better than the last acer 34" ultrawide I used. It's hard to put into words what it's like to be almost completely surrounded by a game in nearly 4K.

    EDIT: I do youtube videos for my channel a lot and they have made 21:9 more or less the new standard for 16:9 screens along with the fact that editing videos at this res and size is a dream come true.
    therealduckofdeath
    "You'll realise that a huge 4:3 display is exceptionally bad for productivity. You'll ruin your neck in a few days as our heads and eyes move excellently from side to side while they don't enjoy up and down as much."
    I bought a 40" Tv once years ago as a monitor, it's only 2" bigger than this one, but that tv was so tall and big that it was impossible to use and hurt!
    Reply
  • emeraldsmines1990
    21142360 said:
    Try an Ultrawide first, EMERALDSMINES1990. You'll realise that a huge 4:3 display is exceptionally bad for productivity. You'll ruin your neck in a few days as our heads and eyes move excellently from side to side while they don't enjoy up and down as much. If a 4:3 display would be as wide as this it would have to be placed on the floor to work ergonomically.

    The Ultrawide makes sense, as you get more workspace without having to split your area over two displays. The curve also makes sense as it counters the warping effect you otherwise get with that much display so close to your face.

    Ultra Wide is for gaming only . for productivity 4:3 is way better. a 30 inch 4:3 is good enough size and wont be that big.

    keep in mind that many people when they used 3 monitors setup for gaming they put them in vertical mode (pivoted) so not all people really prefer ultra wide over 4:3

    example

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MJNkwlSqXUM

    Reply