Available in Europe since late 2014, Philips' much talked about 40-inch Ultra HD BDM4065UC has finally come to the U.S. for gamers and enthusiasts to drool over.
After the first-generation 32-inch Ultra HD screens hit the market at around $3,000, users have been patiently waiting for a jumbo display that didn't cost as much as a used car. We thought we'd gotten a little relief when a crop of 28-inch TN panels came out at around $600, but the smaller form factor means smaller fonts and icons; not the best solution for those of us with less than stellar eyesight.
We've maintained that a large monitor is the best use of Ultra HD's extra pixel density, so Philips decided to top all newcomers with a 40-inch model. The 40-inch display is based on VA technology, which offers the best black levels and highest contrast of all LCD panel types.
At 110ppi, it renders fonts and objects in the same size as a 27-inch QHD screen, which is our current preference in desktop monitors. With a slim bezel and minimal footprint, it should work equally well as a single-user display or in a small conference room setting. The VA panel allows for viewing angles similar to IPS so those outside the sweet spot will still see a bright and colorful image.
Inputs include two HDMIs (one with MHL), two DisplayPorts (one mini-DP) and a legacy VGA connector. Control is possible through an RS-232 interface, which is a rarity in computer monitors. This makes the BDM4065UC better-suited for commercial applications like signage where the screen has to be controlled remotely. Also included is a four-port USB 3.0 hub. With the MultiView feature, two sources can be displayed on the screen at once.
Obviously, the VA panel is something we've been longing to see. Our only other review opportunity of this tech was BenQ's BL3200PT, a 32-inch QHD monitor that is still our contrast leader among all the computer displays we've tested. There's a reason most consumer HDTVs are based on VA; it offers at least double the contrast of the same-size IPS panel. Fortunately for us and our readers, we will be receiving a review sample very soon and we can't wait to put the BDM4065UC through our benchmark suite.
We're particularly excited about this new addition to the Ultra HD ranks, not only for its impressive specs but because of its low price at only $799. This completely smashes the Ultra HD competition in the dollars per square inch contest. The only challenge in owning this monitor is: Can you make enough room on your desktop?