The big monitor preview 2024
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The big monitor preview 2024

Translation: Julia Graham

There’s rarely been as much monitor news as in the last few weeks. We can expect an influx of OLED models but also a few other innovations. Time for an epic overview.

Have you been waiting a long time for the right moment to buy a screen? It's approaching in leaps and bounds. 2024 will be an excellent year for displays. In this article, I'll give you an overview of the trends and innovations.

At this year's CES in Las Vegas, manufacturers set off a firework display of new monitors. The two panel manufacturers LG Display and Samsung Display are engaged in a fierce battle for market dominance. The winner of the duel is you, the consumer. Because the list of promising devices is long.

LCD vs. WOLED vs. QD-OLED

In order to categorise the new monitors, you need an overview of the current display technologies. They fall into five categories:

  1. LCD with TN panel
  2. LCD with IPS panel
  3. LCD with VA panel
  4. White OLED (WOLED)
  5. Quantum Dot OLED (QD-OLED)

An overview of the advantages and disadvantages of LCD and OLED:

If you want to know more about the technical basics, I recommend this article on OLED vs. LCD and this article on WOLED vs. QD-OLED by colleague Luca Fontana.

The most important differences between the various LCD technologies:

  • TN panels cost the least and achieve very good response times and high frame rates. However, viewing angle stability, colour reproduction and black levels are the worst.
  • IPS panels have a high viewing angle stability and very good colour reproduction. But they are expensive. The black levels and response times are only mediocre. This makes the picture appear less sharp during fast movements.
  • VA panels offer the best LCD contrast values, the viewing angle stability is between TN and IPS. However, response times are the longest and power consumption is the highest.

The most important differences between QD-OLED and WOLED:

  • QD-OLED can display bright colours more vividly than WOLED. Less light is also lost through colour filters in front of the light-emitting diodes. QD OLED monitors are therefore potentially brighter. However, the triangular sub-pixel pattern leads to colour fringing at edges with high contrast, which reduces text sharpness.
  • WOLED also suffers from colour fringing, but to a lesser extent than QD-OLED. The subpixel pattern is closer to that of classic LCDs, which the operating systems are designed for. At high brightness, WOLED becomes very warm, which can favour burn-in. This is why nervous protection mechanisms are often necessary.

Both LG and Samsung are trying to minimise the disadvantages of their technology: LG squeezes as much brightness out of its new WOLED displays as Samsung's QD OLED achieves. Namely around 250 nits to fill the screen. However, this could lead to more heat and therefore a higher risk of burn-in. There are no meaningful long-term tests yet.

Samsung, on the other hand, has reduced the problem of colour fringing. The rectangular shape of the individual sub-pixels and the higher pixel density of up to 140 pixels per inch (PPI) should help. LG also wants to get closer to the text sharpness of LCD. The latest generation of WOLED displays also has an optimised sub-pixel pattern and a pixel density of up to 140 PPI.

The new sub-pixel pattern of 2nd and 3rd gen QD OLED (right) is designed to improve text sharpness
The new sub-pixel pattern of 2nd and 3rd gen QD OLED (right) is designed to improve text sharpness
Source: Screenshot YouTube / Little Snowman Evaluation

The advantages of OLED displays are slowly gaining the upper hand. They are now even suitable for graphics and image editing. The latest monitors cover the AdobeRGB colour space almost completely. In practice, this means the following in summary:

  • For gaming, nothing beats OLED, unless you're playing in a very bright room. Then you're better off with LCD.
  • For all-round screens, OLED is on a par with LCD. The advantages and disadvantages of both technologies balance each other out if you have a mixed application profile.
  • For Office screens, LCDs with IPS panels are still best suited.

32-inch OLEDs with 4K and 240 hertz

The biggest trend this year by far is OLED screens with a 32-inch diagonal, 4K resolution and 240 hertz frame rate. The displays all come from either Samsung Display (QD-OLED) or LG Display (WOLED). Here is an overview of the announced models and their connections for signal transmission.

With QD-OLED from Samsung Display:

With WOLED from LG Display:

The Omen Transcend 32 is HP's first OLED monitor. It comes with DisplayPort 2.1.
The Omen Transcend 32 is HP's first OLED monitor. It comes with DisplayPort 2.1.
Source: Hewlett Packard

We will only know which one is the best after extensive testing. In addition to the two display technologies, the differences lie primarily in the software and features. Four things already stand out:

  1. The two WOLEDs can switch between 4K 240 hertz and 1080p 480 hertz. The latter can be useful in fast-paced shooters.
  2. The HP Omen Transcend 32 and the Gigabyte Aorus FO32U2P are the only ones to offer DisplayPort 2.1. The FO32U2P supports the latest UHBR20 standard, HP does not provide any information on this.

DisplayPort 2.1 supports higher data rates than version 1.4 - exactly how much depends on the standard: UHBR10 comes to 40 Gbps, UHBR13.5 to 54 Gbps and UHBR20 to 80 Gbps. Current AMD graphics cards support DisplayPort 2.1 with UHBR13.5. In most cases, however, such high data rates are not necessary anyway because the image signal is compressed via Display Stream Compression (DSC) - without any visible loss of quality. With DSC 3.0, the bandwidth of DisplayPort 1.4 is sufficient even for 4K at 240 hertz.
The required data rates of a 10-bit signal with different compression algorithms.
The required data rates of a 10-bit signal with different compression algorithms.
Source: Screenshot YouTube / TFTCentral
  1. The Alienware AW32225QF is the only one curved, with 1700R. All other models are flat.
  2. The Samsung Odyssey OLED G8 has smart TV functions and an additional anti-reflective coating, while the other QD OLEDs are semi-glossy.

The curved Alienware AW32225QF is probably the first monitor of the new OLED generation to be available.
The curved Alienware AW32225QF is probably the first monitor of the new OLED generation to be available.
Source: Alienware

US prices and availability are known for three models so far: The MSI MPG 321URX and Alienware AW32225QF are priced at $1199, while the HP Omen Transcend 32 is priced at $1499. All devices with QD OLED are expected to arrive soon. The monitors with LG's WOLED display have only been announced for the second half of the year.

27-inch OLEDs with 1440p and 360 or 480 hertz

Would you rather have more hertz than a high pixel density? You can have that. With a diagonal of 27 inches and a 1440p resolution, there is also a large selection of new screens. Those with Samsung's QD-OLED reach 360 hertz, LG's WOLED display achieves 480 hertz. Like their big siblings, both have the improved subpixel layouts.

With QD-OLED from Samsung Display:

With WOLED from LG Display:

Here, the only solid announcement of price and date comes from Alienware: the AW2725DF costs $899 and will be available in Europe in February.

Samsung's own QD OLED monitors have a matte coating. So does the G6.
Samsung's own QD OLED monitors have a matte coating. So does the G6.
Source: Samsung

New generation OLED widescreens

QD OLED screens in 21:9 and 32:9 formats have been around for a while. I have tested some myself and found them to be good.

  • Product test

    Samsung Odyssey OLED G9: a juggernaut of a gaming monitor

    by Samuel Buchmann

All 49-inch screens already use the second generation of Samsung's QD-OLED with the improved subpixel pattern. The previous 34-inch models still have the old pattern. New models will also receive the second panel generation in 2024, although only MSI has announced one so far. The resolution remains at 3440 × 1440 or 5120 × 1440 pixels, the curvature at 1800R. There are different levels for the frame rate.

The MSI MAG 341CQP is the only 34-inch display with 2nd Gen QD OLED announced to date.
The MSI MAG 341CQP is the only 34-inch display with 2nd Gen QD OLED announced to date.
Source: MSI

Here is an overview of the already available and upcoming widescreens with the latest generation of QD OLED displays.

34 inch with QD-OLED from Samsung Display:

49 inch with QD-OLED from Samsung Display:

Ultrawide models with WOLED displays are also coming this year. LG produces displays in 21:9 format with diagonals of 34 and 39 inches. They both have a UWQHD resolution of 3440 × 1440 pixels. The frame rate is 240 hertz. The monitors are very aggressively curved at 800R.

The WOLED Ultrawides are very aggressively curved at 800R. Here the Asus ROG Swift OLED PG34WCDM.
The WOLED Ultrawides are very aggressively curved at 800R. Here the Asus ROG Swift OLED PG34WCDM.
Source: Asus

These panels also come from LG's new WOLED generation. They have the higher maximum full-screen brightness of around 250 nits - but unlike the 32-inch screens with 4K, they do not have the optimised subpixel pattern for less colour fringing.

34-inch with WOLED from LG Display:

39 inch with WOLED from LG Display:

Acer has already announced prices and availability. The Predator X34 X costs 1299 US dollars, the X39 1499 US dollars. Both are expected to arrive in the second quarter of 2024.

New gaming LCDs

LCDs for gaming remain exceptionally quiet this year. Only Acer has announced two monitors with mini LED backlighting.

The Acer Predator Z57 is almost a copy of the Samsung Odyssey Neo G9: Local Dimming with 2304 zones, VA panel, 57-inch diagonal and dual UHD resolution. That's 7680 × 2160 pixels. Unlike Samsung's model, Acer's only has 120 instead of 240 hertz and only DisplayPort 1.4 instead of 2.1, but there is a USB-C port. The Predator Z57 will be available in the second quarter of 2024 and costs 2399 euros - the same price as Samsung's monitor a few months ago. For the Predator to become attractive, the street price would have to fall sharply.

The Acer Predator Z57 is the second monitor in the world to have a resolution of 7680 × 2160 pixels.
The Acer Predator Z57 is the second monitor in the world to have a resolution of 7680 × 2160 pixels.
Source: Acer

The second monitor from Acer is smaller, but cheaper. The Acer Predator X34 is 34 inches in size, has an IPS panel, 180 Hertz and a resolution of 3440 × 1440 pixels. It also has local dimming with 2304 zones. Acer quotes a starting price of 899 euros.

New LCDs for the office

Enough gaming. What if you're looking for an office monitor? For sharp text, nothing beats an LCD display with an IPS panel. Progress in this area is rare. There are still practically no devices with mini-LED and local dimming. One exception is Apple's four-year-old ProDisplay XDR. But you have to sell a cardioid for that and it only works satisfactorily with Macs.

I'm therefore looking forward to the 32-inch Asus ProArt PA32UCXR, which should be available soon. It actually has mini-LED with local dimming - with a total of 2304 zones. The 4K resolution means a pixel density of 140 PPI. Asus claims 1600 nits peak brightness, which gives the PA32UCXR HDR 1400 certification. Its colour space coverage also makes it suitable for image processing: 100 per cent sRGB, 99 per cent Adobe RGB, 97 per cent DCI-P3. The only downside is the frame rate of 60 hertz.

A large image editing monitor with mini LED and local dimming at last: The Asus ProArt PA32UCXR
A large image editing monitor with mini LED and local dimming at last: The Asus ProArt PA32UCXR
Source: Asus

Dell is trying to achieve better contrast with its IPS black panels without local dimming: The new UltraSharp U4025QW looks like a good option for the office. It is large (40-inch, 21:9), bright (600 nits), has a good pixel density (140 PPI) and is the first monitor of this size and resolution to offer a higher frame rate (120 Hz). However, it will cost 2399 US dollars at market launch in the first quarter of 2024.

Dell's UltraSharp U4025QW looks like a very good, albeit expensive, office monitor.
Dell's UltraSharp U4025QW looks like a very good, albeit expensive, office monitor.
Source: Dell

A cheaper ultrawide option with a high frame rate comes from LG. The 38WR85QC-W is set to launch in Europe in February. The pixel density is a standard 109 PPI, as the IPS panel only has a resolution of 3840 × 1600 pixels. However, it has 144 Hertz, AMD FreeSync Premium Pro and G-Sync-compatible Adaptive Sync. The brightness is 450 nits. The LG 38WR85QC-W costs 1199 US dollars in the USA.

Looking to the distant future

None of this is enough for you or the new OLEDs are too expensive? Then be patient. Development is progressing rapidly thanks to the competition between LG and Samsung. 2024 is no longer expected to bring any big surprises. But things will continue next year.

LG Display's roadmap envisages mass production of a 45-inch WOLED panel with a resolution of 5120 × 2160 pixels by the end of 2024. If everything goes smoothly, it will find its way into finished monitors a few months later. Later in 2025, 34- and 39-inch displays with the same resolution are planned. This would mean a pixel density of up to 163 PPI. All with a frame rate of 240 hertz. At the same time, LG is reportedly researching switching to a normal RGB sub-pixel layout. This would enable text sharpness at LCD level.

LG Display's roadmap for the next two years looks promising.
LG Display's roadmap for the next two years looks promising.
Source: LG Display

Samsung Display has not yet announced any detailed plans for next year. However, you can assume that there will also be wider QD OLED panels with 140 PPI pixel density. Samsung will also be showing a prototype display with 160 PPI at CES. Higher brightness is also to be expected. This is because Samsung is already increasing it to 3000 nits peak and 300 full screen for the new TVs this year.

What is as certain as the Amen in church: screens will quickly become cheaper. High-end devices in particular usually cost several hundred francs less after six months than at market launch. The Samsung Odyssey OLED G9 G93SC and the Alienware AW34DWF, for example, have become great bargains. So if you don't necessarily want to be an early adopter, wait for good deals.

In any case, I'm looking forward to the monitor year 2024. You can expect lots of detailed reviews of the new models - I've already sent out more requests for test devices than in the whole of last year.

Header image: Asus

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My fingerprint often changes so drastically that my MacBook doesn't recognise it anymore. The reason? If I'm not clinging to a monitor or camera, I'm probably clinging to a rockface by the tips of my fingers.


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