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2022 is a surprisingly great year for screens


I don’t know if this is a delayed effect of the remote working trend or simply a bunch of technologies evolving at the same time (or maybe both), but 2022 is a great year. abnormality for the screen. So, before we move on to the next generation of gadgets in 2023, I just wanted to take a moment to recap some of the standout displays that came out in the last 12 months.

Before we got to the specific models, this year we saw the arrival of two new main players in the gaming monitor space thanks to Sony’s Inzone brand and HyperX Armada Monitor Series. For a company like Sony responsible for some of the most popular consoles of all time, the move is both surprising but also seems a bit late. That’s because Sony has experimented with gaming monitors in the past (remember Playstation 3D TV from 2011), for the most part, has limited expansion into the broader gaming hardware and accessories market — especially when it comes to PC peripherals.

Part of Sony's new Inzone brand, the M9 is part of the company's first major push into PC gaming hardware.

Sam Rutherford/Reference

That said, while Sony’s Inzone line of devices includes headphones and monitors with a similar design to the Playstation 5 and some exclusive features, it’s important to note that these devices come from Sony Electronics. (a company that makes TVs and wireless devices). earbuds) and not Sony Interactive Entertainment (aka Playstation people). That means you won’t find any obvious Playstation logos, but what you do get is some fancy tech found on other high-end Sony devices like its flagship. WH-1000XM5 . Wireless Headphones.

As for the monitor, after testing it earlier this year, I found the Inzone M9 to be one of the best 4K gaming monitors in its price range. Now, for just $799 (down from the $899 starting price), you get a 27-inch monitor with VRR and NVIDIA G-Sync support, DisplayHDR 600 certification, and full-array local dimming. I also appreciate some of the smaller touches that Sony put in, such as the built-in KVM switch and the surprisingly good onboard stereo speakers, the rear speakers make it really easy to connect. PC or PS5 and start playing games without worrying about the sound.

Unlike other monitors, HyperX's Armada line of gaming monitors has ditched the traditional desktop stand in favor of an included display stand for less cluttered setup and easier adjustment. .

Sam Rutherford/Reference

Meanwhile, HyperX (now owned by HP) also entered the fray this year with the line Armada gaming monitor. Similar to Sony, the first batch of HyperX monitors features a slight variation from the standard formula because, instead of shipping with a traditional desktop stand, both of its new monitors are only available with a monitor stand included. And when combined with a 25-inch display that offers 1080p resolution and a 240Hz refresh rate for just $450, or a 2,560 x 1440 display with 165Hz for $500 on the 27-inch model, what you get is some great mid-range monitors, especially for anyone looking to keep clutter to a minimum.

Alienware 34
Alienware’s AW3423DW was the first QD OLED display on the market when it went on sale earlier this spring.

Devindra Hardawar/Engadget

Another major milestone in 2022 is the release of the first batch of QD-OLED displays, led by Alien software AW3423DW. What’s really cool about QD-OLED displays is that they combine the supersaturated colors and pure blacks you get with traditional OLED panels, but with much better brightness, not to mention wide viewing angles. and less glare (when compared to conventional LCD screens). Taking into account the huge ultra-wide format and 175Hz refresh rate, you get the best overall gaming monitor on the market. And while Alienware was the first to release a QD-OLED display, other companies like MSI have their own rival Coming soon.

With a large 55-inch 4K display, the Samsung Odyssey Ark is one of the largest gaming monitors on the market.
With a large 55-inch 4K display, the Samsung Odyssey Ark is one of the largest gaming monitors available today.

Sam Rutherford/Reference

Also, for those who don’t care about cost and just want the biggest and worst gaming monitor on the market, Samsung’s Odyssey Ship It’s one of the most memorable gadgets I’ve used all year. With its massive 55-inch 4K panel and 1000R curve, the Ark envelops you like some sort of spaceship cockpit. And if that’s not enough, you can even rotate it to portrait mode, offering one of the most unique game setups I’ve ever experienced. The downside is that although the Ark has four HDMI inputs and a special Multi-View mode (essentially an improved picture-in-picture feature), due to limitations with HDMI, it can only display content from an external source at a time. But if you have $3,500 lying around and want the most incredible display out this year, the Odyssey Ark can’t be beat.

Recently I also had the opportunity to check LG’s latest UltraGear gaming monitor with their new 240HZ display, which is the highest refresh rate you can get from any OLED display on sale today. LG’s new panels mean you can get both the deep blacks and vibrant colors that OLED screens are famous for. and type of refresh rate that was previously only available on IPS displays. The downside, however, is that with a peak brightness of just 200 nits, the new UltraGears aren’t ideal for gaming in bright rooms.

LG's latest 45-inch gaming monitor not only boasts a super-fast 240Hz display, but also features a very curved 800R radius that provides a cocoon-like experience.
LG’s latest 45-inch gaming monitor not only boasts a super-fast 240Hz display, but also features a very curved 800R radius that provides a cocoon-like experience.

Sam Rutherford/Reference

But as someone who has been waiting for OLED panels to become more popular for a long time, it’s encouraging to see more products added to the mix. That’s because even though there are some OLED screens out there now (like the aforementioned Alienware AW3423DW), the options are still pretty slim. Some like LG C2 actually just TVs that are also being advertised as large-format desktop monitors. While, ASUS ROG Swift OLED Series uses the same panel that LG uses in the C2, but with a few tweaks like an integrated heatsink and DisplayPort 1.4 jack to improve gaming performance.

But perhaps the bigger problem is that all of the OLED screens out there are basically pretty big. C2 is the smallest and ROG SwiftOLED models come in at 42 inches, while the Alienware AW3423DW isn’t much better with its 34-inch ultra-wide panel. But with LG’s new UltraGear OLED, we finally get something of a more manageable size coupled with one of the highest refresh rates we’ve seen on an OLED display to date.

With an unusual 16:18 aspect ratio, LG's DualUp monitor is designed to provide more vertical screen space without the need to rotate the screen to portrait mode.
With an unusual 16:18 aspect ratio, LG’s DualUp monitor is designed to provide more vertical screen space without the need to rotate the screen to portrait mode.

LG

Meanwhile, for anyone who isn’t a gamer, there are also some exciting new productivity monitors that have launched this year. That’s because even though it was technically announced last year, 2022 also sees the launch of LG DualUp Monitor with a funny 16:18 aspect ratio. When combined with its included arm, you’ll enjoy a setup that boasts a lot of vertical screen real estate without the need to stack multiple monitors or have to deal with displays that are too thin when rotated. portrait mode. And, thanks to a color gamut that covers 98 percent of the DCI-P3 spectrum, the DualUp can handle more than just really tall spreadsheets. LG even supports up to 90 watts of power output, so you can take video from your laptop and charge it all with a single USB-C cable.

Finally, while it still needs a bit of improvement, Corsair just released a giant 45-inch gaming monitor with a bendable display called Xeneon Flex. Now I know that the ability to manually switch the screen from flat to curved seems a bit silly (and it probably is, especially when utilities like LG OLED Flex exists and has a built-in motor), but it’s nice to see more companies experimenting with bendable display technology. And who knows, maybe they could add a feature that makes the screen go into gaming mode when you bend the screen, allowing your battle station to shift gears depending on the type of work (or game) ) that you are doing.

Despite that, with more people working remotely than ever before, it’s nice to have more options at the start of your setup. And I haven’t even talked about some of the other innovations from adjacent categories like TVs, laptops and phones such as Optional 240Hz . OLED display above Razer Blade 15″New Panasonic LED.EX TV or the improved under-display camera on the Galaxy Z Fold 4. (I recently used the UDC on my Z Fold 4 to join a video meeting and no one complained about its picture quality). Still, 2022 is still a great year for displays, and as we get closer to CES 2023, I expect that momentum to continue next year.

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