Originally, when ultrawide monitors entered the consumer landscape a few years ago they were oriented towards the workstation individual. Nowadays, choices like the Dell UltraSharp 34 Curved USB-C Monitor appear tame compared to gaming-centric variants, but there’s still a place for this plain-Jane as an all-in-one dual-monitor substitute, or as a split-screen multitasker with a plethora of connectivity to boot. For pros who are strictly about the business, then this will make perfect sense on your deskspace.
For those in the market looking for a panoramic monitor with abundant flair and the ability to turn your room into a epileptic neon lightshow, then the U3419W may disappoint solely on its appearance. Most will scoff that the looks don’t break the mold; it’s a standard, albeit reliable Dell design that doesn’t attempt to stand out with its hard gray plastics and silver matte finishing. There are dual 2-watt speakers built into the U3419W along with a 3.5mm audio jack for convenience, so while you won’t get stellar sound they’re thrown in if you’re listening needs are basic.
The slightest concession to style is the screen bezel that is thin and measures about 0.28 inches and the stand that is able to be tilted at angles of acceptable range (-5° to 21°), and maximum height adjustment of 20.9-inches. Another minor feature is swivel action of up to 30 degrees left or right. In fact, it’s better if you imagine this the U3419W as a hub. This includes two HDMI 2.0 inputs, one DisplayPort 1.2 input, two upstream USB 3.0 ports, and four downstream USB 3 ports (two on the bottom, two on the side). Of course, it’s going to be the USB-C port that defines this monitor.
It’s a 34-inch beast which works out to an impressive 3440×1440 native pixel resolution and 110 ppi density, or a wide 21:9 aspect ratio. The IPS screen provides excellent color accuracy, and Dell proclaims that the U3419W is calibrated to hit 99% of the sRGB color space for vibrancy. Luminance is another area that the U3419W excels in, with an observed 321 nit count and 1031:1 contrast ratio that is above the advertised 1000:1 figure. Basically, the base specifications are a little more humble than the actual performance we got out of the box, an mild overachiever so to speak.
It will be of no surprise that the U3419W is not ahead of the pack if we’re solely talking about gaming prowess. All you can expect is a typical 60Hz refresh rate, and apparent lack of niceties that make consumers salivate so no HDR capability nor adaptive-sync technology (i.e. AMD FreeSync or Nvidia G-Sync). It’s not the most ideal but will showcase games just fine, it’s just that the experience may not be enhanced beyond the viewing dimensions. For example, I played Forza Horizon 4 and Metro Exodus without any issues for light/moderate sessions. In that respect, the U3419W is merely competent for Windows OS gaming.
However, this makes a lot more sense for individuals working on laptops or Macs, because that USB-C port is able to support video and recharge at once. Software like Abode Photoshop or Final Cut Pro will benefit greatly for multitasking, with plenty of display real estate to spare. The U3419W is equally decent for entertainment, with reasonably bright and approximate colors that manage to pop by office monitor standards. One caveat is the aforementioned aspect ratio, as watching movies on full screen is almost guaranteed to display black bars and not make good use of all that widescreen goodness. You either need to manually change the viewing area to fit (which looks weird) or somehow find native content in 21:9.
If you want the vast workspace and plan on completing with a ton of spreadsheets, or editing multiple videos and photos at the same time, then you shouldn’t have any problem with the Dell UltraSharp 34 Curved USB-C Monitor. This is far from being the flashiest, but it really doesn’t need to be as a professional monitor. The U3419W will fit better in an office, but it can still unwind and have a little bit of fun under the right situation.