Dell UltraSharp U3415W: An In-Depth Review

Pioneered by Samsung, curved monitor haven’t really reached its peak of popularity yet, but they are surely on its way to trickle in to the tight competition. Dell jumped into the competition with Samsung and LG through its flagship product in the market - Dell UltraSharp U3415W, an ultra-wide curved monitor especially designed to provide improved panoramic viewing experience for desktop users. But how does it stand in the current curved monitor market? Is it a worthy upgrade? Check out this in-depth review from Dual Monitors Guide and find out.

(image from Amazon)

Who is it for?

If budget is not an issue and you’re looking to upgrade your computer setup with an ultra-wide display, or you want to try the latest curved monitor technology for your workstation, then you should check out Dell UltraSharp U3415W. It made a big splash in the market as it is arguably the best 21:9 monitor we have today.

 

Benefits

(image from Amazon)

Equipped with IPS (In-Plane Switching) panel technology which is best known for delivering rich accurate colors with excellent grayscale performance and wide viewing angles, this gargantuan display is quite an upgrade for desktop PC users. It also comes with numerous I/O ports selection and USB hubs for nice and easy daisy-chaining capabilities.

 

Accurately Rich Colors and Good Grayscale Performance Right Out of the Box

Based on the chromaticity test, colors red, green and blue remained very close to their ideal CIE coordinates. This means Dell UltraSharp U3415W has no problem delivering images in great color details, as it is highly accurate, which is usually the case among quality IPS panels. Colors remained evenly saturated and with rich tone.

In terms of grayscale performance, this Dell UltraSharp monitor is on top of the game: it has no issues reproducing each and every shade of gray based on the DisplayMate 64-Step grayscale test. The monitor can display images in intricate highlight and shadow details.

 

Decent 5ms Response Time and Good 10.5ms Input Lag for Action-Packed Movies and Demanding Games

(image from Amazon)

Most monitors of its size are designed for work settings and multi-tasking apps, windows and documents, which is why many of them don’t come with good response time that supports gaming. Dell UltraSharp U3415W however, works with 5ms pixel response time, which keeps ghosting to a minimum. It doesn’t completely eliminate ghosting, and there are indeed some signs of ghosting when playing big title games such as Burnout Paradise on PlayStation 3, but it only happens when the background is dark.

Also, the 10.5ms Input Lag (the time it takes for the monitor to react to the command of the controller) is competitively fast, making it conducive for fast-twitched games like FPS, racing games or various games that require split-second decision-making.

If you have the budget for a more immersive gaming, then you can put two of this monitor for dual monitor setup.

 

Good Power Consumption Despite the Monitor’s Size and Capabilities

Despite is humongous size and impressive image quality and performance, the Dell U3415W does need a lot of power. It consumes 46 watts at Standard mode and 55 watts at Movie mode. Its rivals LG 34UC97-S runs at 56 watts in Cinema mode.

 

Dual Monitor and Multiple Monitor Mounting Options

The curved design of this monitor makes it very easy and fitting to use for a dual monitor setup. However, as with most colossal monitors, they come with solid stand with stable support, but with limited adjustability and flexibility. And it can even difficult to find ergonomic solution for such setup.

(image from Amazon)

There are some options for improved viewing experience out there though, such as the Interactive Arm, VHD from Ergotron. This monitor arm can support LCD displays ranging from 30-inch to 60-inch in size and weight of 35 lbs. to 70 lbs. Yep, it's meant for TV, but you can actually utilize it for your computer monitor.

Design and Features

Like other products under the UltraSharp series line, Dell U3415W comes with nice aesthetics, only this time, it is way sleeker than the rest. This Dell monitor comes with a black and silver design, while the front is made up of matte-black plastic making a very thin outer edge screen. The bezel-free design makes the 34-inch display look way bigger than it already is. The 3/4 in thin matte-black bottom bezel houses the Dell logo, touch-sensitive buttons, and Power Switch, while the top bezel practically looks microscopic.

 

Curved IPS Panel Delivers WQHD Quality and Excellent 21:9 Aspect Ratio

(image from Amazon)

The slight curved IPS panel delivers WQHD quality, or 3440x1440 resolution, with a 300-nit brightness level and 21:9 Aspect Ratio quality. The entire cabinet weighs 8.4 kg and measures 32 x 14 x 3 inches (HxWxD), with an anti-glare non-reflective coating.

The colossal curved screen provides great movie viewing experience, and more immersive gaming experience. Also, the huge screen is a good size for professional users who typically work with several applications simultaneously, as well as spreadsheets and large documents.

 

Silver Stand with Good Set of Adjustability Options

(image from Amazon)

The 34-inch cabinet of this Dell monitor is supported by a square silver stand, providing a stable and secured base for the desk. It attaches to a fully-adjustable mounting arm, which provides height adjustment of around 5.5 inches, 60⁰ swivel, and 26⁰ tilt. To compare, its close rival LG 34UC97-S has tilt adjustment option, but doesn’t have height and swivel adjustments.

 

A Boatload of I/O Ports to Choose and Use

(image from Amazon)

Dell U3415W comes with a wide range of inputs/output selections, including the full-size DisplayPort connectors (1 in and 1 out), making way for convenient daisy-chaining of multiple monitors. There’s also an HDMI 2.0 input, a mini-DisplayPort input, and a separate Mobile High-Definition Link input (for convenient connectivity of gadgets like smartphones and tablets. There’s also an audio line-out for external speakers, and six (6) USB 3.0 ports (2 upstream that lets you share keyboard and mouse with two computers).

 

A Pair of Good-Quality 9-Watt Speakers

Dell UltraSharp U3415W comes equipped with a good pair of 9-watt speakers, which produces loud and robust sound quality, without signs of distortion. It may not have enough booming bass, but they surely have enough bottom to keep the sound from sounding tinny.

With Good Selection of Basic and Advanced Picture Settings

Designed for work and entertainment, this Dell display comes packed with basic and advanced picture settings to choose from, as well as a user-friendly menu system that makes navigation conveniently easy. Aside from the basic Brightness, Contrast and Gamma settings selection, there are seven (7) Picture Preset options, namely Standard, Multimedia, Paper, Color Temperature, Movie, Game and Custom. Choosing the Custom Preset will let you tweak the Offset and Gain levels of the colors red, green and blue, as well as the Saturation and Hue levels for red, green, blue, yellow, cyan and magenta.

More adjustments include Sharpness, Dynamic Contrast, PiP (Picture-in-Picture) and PBP (Picture-by-Picture_ settings, and the calibrated Uniformity Compensation setting that lets you set the areas of the screen to maintain even brightness and color with respect to the center of the screen.

 

Tech Specs

Package comes with a mini-DisplayPort cable, HDMI cable, and an upstream USB cable, along with a Quick Start Guide, CD with User Guide, drivers and Dell’s Display Manager Software. The Manager Software lets you make changes on your Picture Presets using only the mouse and keyboard and apply these changes to your specific applications. It also comes with an Easy Arrange utility, which lets you customize or predefine window layouts.

 

Bottom Line

The 3440x1440 resolution on ultra-wide 34-inch screen makes a captivating experience, with tons of potential for productivity. The wide panoramic screen of the Dell UltraSharp U3415W really provides a great amount of workspace, making it a great solution for multi-tasking. Also, with the slight curve, it improves viewing comfort. It’s a subtle concave curve, but it’s undeniably a good feature to have. The curve doesn’t really feel revolutionary in terms of viewing experience, but it provides more natural and comfortable viewing, which is what manufacturers of curved screen actually look for. The size and format of this monitor may take a few days to get really used to, but you will definitely enjoy working on a wide desktop with comfortable pixel pitch size and high resolution.

It has excellent factory calibration, making accurate shade reproduction with great consistency and strong variety of shades, which makes this UltraSharp monitor an excellent choice for both work and entertainment purposes. Also, the smooth matte screen surface allows strong static contrast performance, pretty impressive for an IPS panel.

Indeed, it is probably the best curved WQHD monitor we have today, but it is not perfect. There is still “IPS glow” despite the slight reduction made by the curved screen. There are also some slight backlight bleed. There are some gamma issues outside the monitor’s “Standard” preset mode, which is a little disappointing, given the preset offers slightly more color gamut, which for some users might want for extra vibrancy.

Also, there are moderate input lag and signs of weaknesses during transitions, but then again, we know that this display is not designed for gaming.

Lastly, the subtle curve may cause some issues for those who are into graphics design or photography.

All in all, the Dell UltraSharp U3415W is still a good all-around monitor, with good all-around performance we can expect from IPS displays. It’s a good choice for people looking to replace their dual-monitor setup or want to experience the curved-screen on their desktop. It’s also a great choice for more immersive gaming, as the big curved screen makes a good dual monitor setup.

For more in-depth reviews like this, check out Dual Monitors Guide today!



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