Having recently looked at the Predator X34P, Acer's new 34-inch ultrawide gaming display, we have to say that while it's a pretty fantastic product, the high price of $ 1,300 makes it a price-conscious buyer makes unreachable. Today we're looking at an Asus monitor that brings a similar experience for a lot less money.
If I say less money now, it doesn't mean that we're suddenly talking about a $ 200 monitor. However, the Asus ROG Strix XG35VQ costs $ 800, which is a huge difference of $ 500.
And we still get many of the same features: a 35-inch 3440 x 1440 VA panel with an 1800R curve, a refresh rate of 100 Hz, and FreeSync support. It doesn't have the X34P's slightly higher 120 Hz update or G-Sync, but otherwise we see a similar experience for gaming.
And if you haven't played on a 21: 9 ultrawide monitor yet, you're probably missing out as this type of display is my personal favorite. With the resolution of the 1440p class and the 100 Hz update, you get a high-end visual experience with an XG35VQ, provided you have a sufficiently powerful system.
Let's take a closer look at this monitor …
Asus makes a lot of boxes here with the design and the functions. The stand supports a wide range of motion, including height, panning and tilting, and is compatible with the VESA mount. The screen display is controlled by a direction switch on the back, which facilitates navigation.
There are numerous connectivity options, including HDMI 2.0, a separate HDMI 1.4 connector, DisplayPort 1.2 and a USB hub with two connectors.
I could give or take aesthetics here; Asus tends to use a rather aggressive gamer style on its ROG monitors, with red highlights on the stand and an … interesting pattern on the back. There's even an RGB ring on the back with Aura Sync support, which doesn't make much sense on a monitor, but Asus only hits all those marketing buzzwords. I think the RGB display itself is no longer sufficient for monitors these days.
The size of the front bezel is quite good here, below and below 9mm on the sides, along with a rather bulky 29mm front bezel that appears normal for this type of Ultrawide display. And the 1800R curve is striking, even though it helps the edges of the display to appear a little more in your field of vision while playing. I prefer a flat screen on a 16: 9 display, but on a 21: 9 display I think the curve works.
I won't be spending a lot of time on the on-screen display functions because if you've used an Asus monitor or really a gaming monitor that has been made in the past few years, a lot of things are very familiar here. There are cheat functions like crosshairs, which Asus secretly calls "practice mode", as well as things like weak blue light, adaptive contrast and picture in picture.
One of the more useful additions is ELMB or Extreme Low Motion Blur, which flashes the backlight according to the refresh rate to reduce motion blur. If you activate this function, brightness and image quality will be severely impaired. However, the added clarity and apparent sharpness can be helpful for fast-paced shooters. If you activate ELMB, FreeSync is also deactivated, so this is not suitable for everyone.
Speaking of FreeSync: One of the reasons why this monitor is cheaper is obvious that it uses FreeSync over G-Sync. Therefore, it is more suitable for AMD GPU owners or those who are not interested in adaptive synchronization. While FreeSync monitors can be a hit or miss because FreeSync doesn't have the rigorous G-Sync certification, this special FreeSync display supports important features like low frame rate compensation because the refresh rate range is large enough.
So let's look at some of the specifications Asus lists for this monitor and how close the panel actually comes. When it comes to brightness, Asus lists 300 nits, and in my tests it does it fairly comfortably with a peak of 358 nits in my tests. There is no local dimming or HDR support here, so the maximum brightness remains constant, regardless of how much white is on the panel at the same time.
Asus lists a contrast ratio of 2500: 1, which is standard for a VA panel and is one of the main advantages of this technology compared to IPS or TN. In my tests, I measured 2239: 1 as standard, which is a little short here, but is still decent for an LCD. And this contrast ratio is well maintained in the entire brightness range up to 62 nits, the lowest supported brightness.
The only disadvantage of VA panels are usually the response times that Asus has at 4 ms from gray to gray. On the other hand, you get great viewing angles, but they're not quite as good as the IPS-based alternatives.
In terms of uniformity, the XG35VQ falls into the same bracket as many curved displays: it is relatively poor in this area. With a new 7×5 test grid for uniformity, we can clearly see that the edges of the panel deviate significantly from the center, with DeltaE values over 5.0 in some cases. When displaying solid colors or pure white backgrounds, these problems are somewhat noticeable, but not only in this area: Almost every curved display I have tested suffers in the same way.
The power consumption is decent, if the panel is calibrated to 200 nits of brightness, it only consumes 45 W of juice, but at maximum brightness this value increases to over 60 W.