Dell Ultrasharp 49 Full Overview: A Massively Superior Ultrawide

Dell Ultra Sharp 49 "LED Illuminated Monitor (U4919DW) – Black

"You don't need the Ultrasharp 49, but you will want it. You will want it so much."

  • My god, it's huge

  • Sharp resolution

  • Solid all-round picture quality

  • A lot of connectivity

  • Extremely high price

  • No HDR or frame sync technology

How wide can your monitor be? Well, it depends. How wide is your desk?

Samsung's 49-inch CHG90 ultrawide, released in autumn 2017, challenged everyone's guesses how big a monitor should be. Now, a year later, Dell is taking on this challenge with its own Ultrawide, the Ultrasharp U4919DW (better known as Ultrasharp 49).

This massive monitor is the same size as the Samsung, but is also very different. The resolution of 5,120 x 1,440 is higher, the maximum refresh rate of 60 Hz is lower and the 3800R curve is less dramatic. Although similar in size, this is another animal with an impressive price tag of $ 1,700.

Is this the ultimate monitor? Or did Dell go too far?

Yes sir, it's a Dell

If you've ever worked in an office or even stepped inside, you've probably seen a Dell Ultrasharp monitor. These popular displays are known for their sturdy but buttoned design that puts function above shape, and the Ultrasharp U4919DW doesn't break the shape.

That doesn't mean that this is an ugly monitor. In fact, it's a bit dramatic. This is a 49-inch monitor with an aspect ratio of 32: 9 and narrow bezels on all sides. Once you have exceeded the size, however, there is little to notice. The large plastic back wall looks good and feels sturdy, but does not lure. The same applies to the ergonomic stand, which offers height and tilt adjustments. Due to the size of the Ultrasharp 49, this stand does not have the pan and rotation settings common to other Ultrasharp screens.

The connectivity is impressive. The screen has two HDMI 2.0 ports, a DisplayPort 1.4, five USB 3.0 downstream ports, two USB 3.0 upstream ports and a USB-C port. Show it!

Dell has again shown how to deal with monitor controls.

The Samsung CHG90 has a similar load on the video connections, but offers USB-C for an additional mini-DisplayPort. On the Samsung monitor there is also a passage for the audio jack, which the Dell lacks. However, the Samsung has far fewer USB ports with one USB 3.0 upstream and two USB 3.0 downstream ports.

All in all, the design and options of each monitor are tailored to the audience. The Samsung was developed for games and entertainment and therefore has a more dramatic curve and additional video and audio connections. Dell, on the other hand, offers the Ultrasharp 49 both as the ultimate productivity monitor and as a dock for laptops with USB-C connectivity. You can connect to the Ultrasharp 49 monitor via USB-C and connect your peripheral devices via it, instead of having a separate dock.

How to monitor controls

Dell has again shown how to deal with monitor controls. The Ultrasharp 49 contains five tactile keys, which are clearly identified by touching on-screen symbols. These controls respond, the menus are well organized, and the font size is extremely large. Finding and activating an option is rarely a chore.

Dell Ultrasharp 49-inch monitor test U4919DWDan Baker / Digital Trends

There is also a large selection. Aside from the usual contrast, brightness, and sharpness options, you can change color temperature, hue, saturation, gain, and offset. There are also several customizable button options and small improvements, such as the ability to turn off the power indicator when the display is on in case you should mind.

The resolution is where it is

If you should know one thing about the Dell Ultrasharp 49 (apart from its size), it is the resolution.

The Samsung CHG90 beats the Ultrasharp 49 in some important tests, but hardly.

The Samsung CHG90 has a 3,440 x 1,080 display, which means that the pixel density essentially corresponds to that of a 27-inch 1080p monitor. However, the Dell Ultrasharp 49 has a resolution of 5,120 x 1,440, which makes it a 27-inch 1440p monitor. In other words, the Dell has almost twice as many pixels as the Samsung.

There is a big difference and you will notice it. The Samsung's pixel density is sufficient, but fine details can sometimes look rough. This is not a problem at Dell. The picture appears sharp and detailed no matter what you see. The higher resolution also means that you effectively have a larger work area because more pixels are available.

Sharpness is a clear win for the Dell. However, the image quality is more than the number of pixels, and in many other important areas, the Samsung CHG90 and Ultrasharp 49 trade hits are too short.

All in all, the Samsung wins these battles. The contrast, the color gamut and even the average color accuracy are slightly better. However, the Samsung's maximum brightness is lower and the gamma is slightly off, while the Dell's gamma is quite good. This means that the Dell appears brighter and displays the brightness of content with better accuracy.

Which one is better? Well, it depends on what you need. The Samsung is awesome in games and the rare 32: 9 video clip. It looks smoother due to its faster refresh rate of 144 Hz and its better contrast offers a better illusion of depth and realism.

Dell Ultrasharp 49-inch monitor test U4919DWDan Baker / Digital Trends

However, the Dell offers a head start in still images and productivity. It can render sharp text effortlessly, which means that you have all the open windows with fine fonts and can still read everything (as long as your eyesight is sharp). Because of the more accurate gamma performance, it is also a better display for editing images. The Dell Ultrasharp 49 is practically the same as two beautiful 27-inch monitors next to each other, but without a bezel in between. This gives you a lot of screen space to work with.

Both displays have one weak point in common, and that is the uniformity of the backlight. You will likely notice areas near the edge of the monitor that are lighter than the center. This is a common problem with ultrawide displays of any size and usually towards the edges where you look the least. However, you should know the problem before buying. We think this is an acceptable compromise for size, but perfectionists will be upset.

As already mentioned, the Dell Ultrasharp 49 has a typical refresh rate of 60 Hz. FreeSync support for a smoother gameplay is also missing, which the Samsung CHG90 supports. Finally, the Samsung CHG90 supports HDR (limited edition). These reinforce the differences between these monitors. The Dell cannot process games with a high frame rate or HDR films and the Samsung display.

After calibration, it's more the same

Both monitors immediately look good. Neither set records, but they consistently deliver solid results and are a huge improvement over the budget monitors that most people buy. Which is good when you consider that these massive displays have massive price tags.

Calibrating the displays didn't change our impressions. The color accuracy has not changed significantly. Gamma stayed the same. We tamed the cool color temperature that both monitors had, making the image warmer and more inviting.

Our opinion

The Ultrasharp 49 from Dell is only the second product in a niche category and is enough to differ from the Samsung CHG90.

However, the price of $ 1,700 for Dell is enormous and significantly affects the value of the display. Samsung's CHG90 only costs $ 1,000 – still a lot, but more bearable.

However, we doubt that value shoppers will look at 49-inch screens at first, and Dell's superior resolution could be worthwhile for demanding eyes.

Is there a better alternative?

There is an alternative you should know by now: the Samsung CHG90. It is the same size, but offers different functions for a different audience. Players will be more interested in Samsung because of the lower price, high refresh rate and HDR support. However, if you are looking for a large monitor for multitasking, you will prefer Dell's superior resolution and easy-to-use connectivity.

How long it will take?

Dell has an advantage over Samsung here, and again, it comes down to resolution. The Samsung's lower resolution already looks a bit dated and could look seriously old-fashioned in three years. This is not a problem with the Dell Ultrasharp 49.

Our only concern is the lack of HDR support. We suspect this will become common soon. However, even monitors that support this have limitations, so the lack is understandable.

The Dell standard comes with a three-year warranty. Samsung offers the same for the CHG90.

Should you buy it


Appearance. The Dell Ultrasharp 49 is expensive. Very expensive. You don't need it and chances are you can't afford it like most in the world. But if you can afford it and want it, do it. We will surely be sad when it leaves our desk.

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