Alienware AW3423DWF 34″ QD-OLED Assessment

The Dell Alienware AW3423DWF is a more recent and decrease value variant of the AW3423DW we reviewed in early 2022. Contemplating that is the most effective gaming displays you should purchase proper now, it is no shock this variant (provides an “F” to the mannequin title) has gathered a variety of consideration as it is a extra accessible method to get your fingers on a QD-OLED ultrawide. However, there are a couple of further attention-grabbing variations as properly. So let’s discuss this new DWF 34″ mannequin…

Alienware AW3423DWF 34″ QD-OLED Assessment

The bottom specs are very comparable: it is the identical 34-inch 3440 x 1440 QD-OLED ultrawide panel from Samsung with an 1800R curvature. Naturally, it is a true HDR product with DisplayHDR TrueBlack 400 certification, and it has rated 0.1ms response occasions.

On paper, the one major spec distinction is a slight refresh charge lower at 165Hz for the DWF vs 175Hz on the DW, although virtually talking this makes subsequent to no distinction whereas gaming because it’s solely a 6% discount.

What makes the DWF extra inexpensive is the elimination of the Nvidia G-Sync module in favor of a extra conventional scaler. This drops the value by $200 from $1,300 to $1,100, which is a typical worth hole between a G-Sync and non-G-Sync product of in any other case the identical {hardware}.

Whereas the displays are listed on Dell’s web site because the “AMD FreeSync Premium Professional” and “Nvidia G-Sync Final” variants, both monitor works with adaptive sync tech from each manufacturers, so the DWF variant works with each AMD and Nvidia GPUs regardless of being listed underneath FreeSync, identical to how the DW additionally works with AMD and Nvidia GPUs regardless of being G-Sync branded and having the module.

It is not one thing to be involved about, you needn’t choose a variant based mostly on the GPU you might have.

The 34″ DWF brings a couple of different minor modifications, together with consumer upgradeable firmware which was a little bit of a difficulty for early adopters of the AW3423DW – together with ourselves – because the very first batch of items did have a couple of firmware bugs equivalent to standby points and the OLED panel care options activating at suboptimal occasions.

With this evaluation we even have the chance to see if there’s any efficiency variations in areas like enter latency, calibration and response occasions which can change because the scaler has been swapped.

This evaluation is meant to be a complement to our authentic AW3423DW evaluation, so we might strongly advocate checking that out for the complete image on what this show can provide. Areas that are the identical between each displays might be lined in additional depth within the AW3423DW evaluation; the first purpose right here is to see if there are any variations between the DW and DWF fashions and the way that impacts your potential shopping for choice.

Design and Seems to be

From a design standpoint the DWF mannequin is equivalent to the DW besides with all the white panels swapped for black. We guess you could possibly name this the “stealth” model in consequence, and truthfully we choose the best way the black mannequin seems in comparison with the unique two-tone design.

There’s additionally a distinction in RGB lighting results on the rear, the DW has a light-weight ring across the stand connection however no RGB for the big 34 textual content; it is the other on this DWF variant the place there is no gentle ring however the 34 has RGB lighting. The DW additionally has a light-weight bar close to the OSD toggle which the cheaper DWF would not have. Not an enormous deal both method as in any other case they give the impression of being fairly comparable.

That is excellent news as a result of the AW3423DW is a well-built show and that additionally applies right here, it undoubtedly seems and appears like a premium product regardless of most of the surfaces being plastic. The stand in all fairness sturdy, it helps peak, tilt and swivel adjustment and truthfully we predict it seems nice.

One of many extra contentious facets to the DW was its lively cooling. Whereas switched on, and even throughout standby, the DW produced audible fan noise. Energetic cooling has been part of G-Sync module shows for some time now as a fan is required to chill the module, with various outcomes on how audible the fan noise is. The DW was on the more severe finish of the size because the fan could possibly be heard in a quiet room, although sometimes not over recreation audio.

The DWF nonetheless contains lively cooling, nevertheless the fan is far quieter to the purpose the place I did not discover it in a quiet room from an affordable viewing distance. It was solely after I put my ear proper as much as the highest vents the place I might hear the fan and really feel some air motion.

The DWF has additional advantages: the fan noise would not seem to vary, not like the DW the place the fan ramps up and slows down at occasions, which makes it more durable to mix into background noise. The DWF additionally appears to completely change off the fan in standby, whereas the DW mannequin nonetheless runs the fan at occasions when in standby and your PC is off. There isn’t a doubting in any way the DWF mannequin has higher tuned cooling and is the higher product for silent PC fans.

Nonetheless, the problems with port choice stay between the 2 fashions. We’re solely getting DisplayPort 1.4 and HDMI 2.0 right here. The DP 1.4 port would not use DSC, so it is restricted to 8-bit 165Hz with 10-bit solely at decrease refresh charges, not an enormous deal although.

The larger situation is that the DWF nonetheless would not use HDMI 2.1, so it is solely able to 100Hz over HDMI 2.0. HDMI 2.0 is a limitation of the G-Sync module, however this wasn’t resolved when the scaler was swapped.

As for the OSD, it is easy to navigate because of a directional toggle, and contains all the same old shade and recreation options. Apparently, the DWF has extra options, together with cheat crosshairs and one thing known as “console mode” which supplies you the choice of supply tone mapping on supported enter gadgets.

Clearly, consumer upgradeable firmware is a large plus, too, as any points found with how the DWF operates can truly be fastened with out an RMA, not like with the DW.

In our AW3423DW evaluation we spent intensive time protecting the display screen coating and subpixel construction of the QD-OLED panel. Because the AW3423DWF makes use of the very same panel, the identical points are current right here. So the sections on these issues from our preliminary evaluation maintain true and we advocate checking that evaluation for our in depth findings.

However to summarize… the QD-OLED panel’s coating is shiny and lacks a polarizer, so it could actually mirror fairly a little bit of ambient gentle, relying on the circumstances. In a typical indoor viewing surroundings with synthetic gentle, or in a sunlit room, blacks can seem gray or raised resulting from a few of this gentle being mirrored off the panel. That is not like an LG OLED which seems a lot blacker even with ambient gentle within the room.

This ambient reflectivity is exacerbated when there’s extra gentle in entrance of the panel, however is not as problematic when lighting is just behind the show, and it is a non situation in dimly lit or darkish rooms.

This may hamper the wealthy OLED expertise in some viewing circumstances: OLEDs are well-known for his or her black ranges, however with the AW3423DWF you may have to have an optimized setup to get essentially the most out of it.

The subpixel construction can be not splendid for desktop productiveness use. The QD-OLED panel makes use of a triangle RGB structure as an alternative of the standard RGB stripe, which might trigger fringing on excessive distinction edges equivalent to textual content. This isn’t simply fixable with software program corrections. Some individuals do not discover this situation, however others together with myself discovered it moderately apparent, particularly subsequent to a standard LCD. This reduces the crispness and readability of textual content in some conditions, however is a non-issue for content material consumption, gaming, or watching movies.

Commonplace OLED points are additionally current, together with the chance of everlasting burn in, which does not make this a great candidate for productiveness work the place static photographs could also be displayed on display screen for lengthy durations of time. QD-OLED is supposedly much less inclined to burn in than different OLED panel sorts, and Dell does provide a 3 12 months burn in guarantee, however it’s nonetheless unclear how these panels might be affected over the subsequent few years. There’s a danger and it is essential to concentrate on that.

Show Efficiency

When it comes to movement efficiency, there is no such thing as a distinction between the DW and DWF. The one distinction you might be seeing in these outcomes in comparison with what we confirmed in our AW3423DW evaluation is that we have since fastened a difficulty with our take a look at instruments and their capability to check OLED screens.

This has improved recorded OLED efficiency, however it’s essential to notice there is no such thing as a precise distinction between this show and the DW – we retested the older mannequin and it is roughly the identical.

We’re seeing a few 0.3ms response time for the DWF which could be very quick and that continues to present OLED an enormous benefit in comparison with an LCD of the identical refresh charge. Overshoot is negligible and efficiency is held throughout all the refresh charge vary so there is no distinction in efficiency whether or not you are at 165Hz or 60Hz. That is wonderful and delivers movement readability that rivals 240Hz LCDs.

There isn’t any distinction between the DW and DWF in response occasions, and in addition no distinction to the LG C2 OLED and different displays utilizing that household of panels. The hole to LCDs is relatively giant, with the quickest I’ve examined coming in round 2ms, in comparison with 0.3ms right here. Different HDR succesful shows examined at their greatest refresh charge just like the Odyssey Neo G8 and Cooler Grasp GP27U are various levels of slower.

OLEDs are in a position to prolong their lead common efficiency, as a result of not like most LCDs, there is no distinction in efficiency at any refresh charge. This provides OLEDs someplace within the vary of 10x quicker response occasions on common in comparison with a great high quality LCD, so if movement is king for you, there is no better option. You may see comparable in common cumulative deviation the place there’s a big benefit in favor of OLEDs just like the DWF, however no distinction evaluating the DW to DWF. Mounted refresh charge efficiency can be wonderful and unchanged with the brand new mannequin.

What has modified is enter lag. Beforehand the DW mannequin with the G-Sync module had mediocre enter lag of round 5ms, which is increased than many different shows. With the brand new DWF mannequin that ditches the G-Sync module in favor of a standard scaler, that is introduced enter lag properly down and it now sits at a 0.3ms processing delay which is typical of a contemporary gaming monitor. This results in decrease whole enter lag that once more rivals a number of the quickest shows available on the market, just because the response occasions on provide listed here are so quick it is ridiculous.

And in excellent news there is no distinction between SDR and HDR enter latency. Many LCD equivalents have elevated HDR processing lag as they need to run algorithms to resolve upon the very best native dimming configuration. That is not required right here, so sometimes there is no distinction between SDR and HDR lag for an OLED.

Energy consumption can be decrease from the DWF mannequin because the G-Sync module is kind of energy hungry. Energy utilization when displaying a 200 nit full white picture dropped from 101 watts to 86 watts with the brand new mannequin, presenting a 15W discount which is respectable. Basically although the DWF continues to be a comparatively energy hungry panel in essentially the most hectic eventualities for an OLED, with typical energy utilization whereas gaming being decrease and extra within the vary of LCDs.

Colour Efficiency

Colour House: Alienware AW3423DWF – D65-P3

Colour efficiency is kind of comparable between each fashions as each use the identical panel, so we’re getting the identical wonderful 99% DCI-P3 protection in addition to 97% protection of Adobe RGB. This results in round 80% Rec. 2020 protection which is superb amongst gaming displays.

Default Colour Efficiency

As for manufacturing unit calibration, the DWF mannequin had cheap greyscale calibration out of the field, barely higher than our DW resulting from improved gamma monitoring. Nonetheless each fashions include an unclamped shade gamut by default, so oversaturation is current as the colour area extends properly past the usual sRGB used for PC SDR content material. DeltaEs listed here are common at greatest.

Comparatively talking these charts there is not an enormous distinction between the DW and DWF for manufacturing unit efficiency, the F mannequin being just a little higher for greyscale and just a little worse for ColorChecker.

sRGB Mode Colour Efficiency

Calibrated Colour Efficiency

Nonetheless, the brand new DWF variant does have the superior sRGB mode, though some controls are nonetheless locked like on the unique mannequin. Our DWF unit had flatter CCT efficiency and nearer adherence to the right gamma curve, resulting in decrease deltaEs.

This gave the newer DWF a few 1 deltaE benefit in saturation and ColorChecker, although each find yourself having very strong sRGB modes which might be value utilizing for viewing SDR content material. A full calibration can enhance both monitor and ship actually good outcomes.

There isn’t any distinction between the DW and DWF’s brightness habits. Each high out round 240 to 250 nits for desktop content material, with the automated brightness limiter disabled for desktop SDR utilization.

This provides constant brightness in all utilization circumstances which is nice for utilizing desktop apps. Minimal brightness can be comparable, so the general brightness vary is mainly the identical. Black ranges are additionally the identical after all, as each use the identical panel with OLED expertise.

No distinction to viewing angles or uniformity both, the truth is I used to be shocked how comparable the uniformity outcomes are for the DWF in comparison with the DW I reviewed earlier within the 12 months. So yeah do not count on many variations there.

HDR Efficiency

HDR efficiency is essential and it is one of many major causes you’d purchase an OLED, to expertise elite HDR gaming. The excellent news is that the HDR {hardware} right here is essentially the identical because the AW3423DW, so we get zero black ranges, per pixel native dimming and good ranges of peak brightness.

This kind of monitor like different OLEDs has unparalleled capability to point out vivid and darkish content material shut collectively, so the whole lot we stated in our preliminary evaluation of the DW holds true for the DWF. It is a nice panel for HDR.

There are some variations although. The principle one is in HDR accuracy and EOTF monitoring. Beforehand the DW had two major modes, an HDR 400 True Black mode and an HDR Peak 1000 mode which altered the height brightness and adjusted EOTF monitoring barely.

With the DW, the HDR 400 mode was extra correct than the HDR 1000 mode, however in the end each have been good – although there was some variability relying on common image stage.

The DWF is totally different. Not solely are there extra modes to select from – now together with stuff like “Sport HDR” – however they’re additionally much less correct than the DW’s equal modes.

Usually the brand new modes are fairly just like the HDR 400 True Black mode, right here known as the DisplayHDR True Black mode, so I am not going to deal with them right here.However that is how the brand new Displ ayHDR mode works, so you may examine it to the HDR 400 mode within the authentic DW mannequin.

It is fairly comparable total, each topping out round 450 nits, although the DWF mode is considerably much less correct for darkish stage monitoring.

Sadly, the largest distinction seems for the HDR 1000 mode. If you wish to entry increased brightness ranges like 1000 nits (that are enabled on this mode for window sizes round 5% or decrease), the HDR 1000 mode will not be superb or correct, virtually at all times being too vivid.

Monitoring right here is far worse than the DW’s HDR 1000 mode, and can be extra variable, providing even larger variations in monitoring relying on the APL of the content material being proven. That is additionally true evaluating the HDR 400 modes, however to a lesser diploma. So mainly the unique variant has tighter HDR monitoring with higher accuracy in each of its modes, and whereas the HDR 1000 mode is usable on the DW, it is not that usable on the DWF.

Fortunately this may be corrected by way of a firmware replace and we have let Dell know it is a difficulty so hopefully they do launch a revision to regulate the HDR 1000 mode’s efficiency.

Apart from these calibration variations in HDR modes, there’s not lots separating the HDR efficiency of each shows, which should not be a shock as they each use the identical panel.

For instance, full display screen sustained brightness continues to be the identical, as is 10% window brightness. Neither of those areas could be very spectacular from these QD-OLED ultrawides and falls properly under most LCDs and even another OLEDs we have examined. However you do not see HDR content material exceeding 400 nits for giant display screen areas fairly often, so regardless of decrease brightness in these charts, the precise actual world HDR efficiency is usually fairly good from the AW3423DWF.

Brightness monitoring within the HDR 1000 mode can be comparable between the 2 displays. Our DW mannequin was barely brighter total, however in the end these two shows ship almost equivalent efficiency with comparable curves. Round 1000 nits is feasible with small window sizes each in benchmarking and in actual world content material equivalent to video games and flicks.

Necessities Guidelines

The ultimate part we have now is the HUB Necessities Guidelines, which assesses whether or not Dell is precisely promoting this monitor’s capabilities and whether or not the show meets primary acceptable efficiency metrics.

Within the opening part, the AW3423DW does obtain a deduction for under together with HDMI 2.0, which limits the show to simply 100Hz as an alternative of the complete 175Hz. We additionally discovered it odd that for the DWF mannequin Dell’s web site inaccurately reveals a slimmer bezel than what’s lifelike.

It additionally reveals slimmer bezels than Dell’s personal web site for the DW mannequin, although the precise bezels for each the DWF and DW are the identical. So do not be confused into shopping for the DWF for its supposed slimmer bezels based mostly on advertising and marketing pictures.

The movement part is improved relative to the DWF, largely resulting from decrease enter latency. And whereas the 0.1ms response time declare is not that correct on common, this monitor is able to round 0.1ms response occasions greatest case. Clearly, no points with HDR right here as this can be a true HDR monitor.

Then within the points and defects sections we do have a couple of penalties to dish out. No flickering or pixel inversion points, however the AW3423DW does use a non-standard subpixel structure and is vulnerable to burn in – although not like the unique mannequin it would not have an audible fan.

What We Realized

So that is the Alienware AW3423DWF and the way it differs in comparison with the unique mannequin, the AW3423DW. We predict potential patrons might be blissful to know that within the majority of cases, this new mannequin has improved on the unique regardless of the extra inexpensive worth level. Throughout most efficiency areas, the 2 are mainly equivalent.

To summarize the optimistic modifications we’re seeing right here, the brand new DWF variant has a a lot quieter fan with a greater fan curve, decrease enter lag for SDR and HDR gaming, a number of new OSD options, consumer upgradeable firmware, small SDR accuracy enhancements and a brand new all-black design that I personally choose.

A number of firmware bugs with the preliminary batch of DW items aren’t current right here, I did not expertise any points with sleep or randomly activating OLED care options. It is also the cheaper of the 2 at simply $1,100, a $200 low cost attributable to swapping the G-Sync module for a standard scaler.

Many areas are equivalent. You’ll be able to count on the identical response occasions, the identical brightness in SDR and HDR modes, the identical per-pixel dimming capabilities and – sadly – the identical basic points with the QD-OLED panel equivalent to its coating, subpixel structure and danger of burn in.

There are additionally a couple of regressions in comparison with the unique mannequin although. The refresh charge is barely decrease at 165Hz vs 175Hz, although that is negligible for players. The larger situation is the change in HDR accuracy and EOTF monitoring, particularly within the brightest HDR 1000 mode. This mode is certainly worse on the DWF, it is usually too vivid, and extra inconsistent throughout totally different APLs relative to the DW. We hope that is one thing Dell can enhance by way of a firmware replace, fortunately that is an possibility on this new model.

In its present state we do not assume there is a clear reply on which AW3423 mannequin is the higher purchase, a minimum of till they repair the HDR 1000 mode on the DWF. As soon as that’s equal to what we get on the DW, the DWF would be the clearly superior possibility – it has fewer points, extra options and a lower cost. However for some those that should have the very best HDR expertise with the brightest highlights, proper now the unique AW3423DW does provide that to a greater diploma than the DWF, although the HDR 400 mode on the DWF continues to be very usable and appears nice.

When you’re not as involved with EOTF monitoring and do not care about how correct it’s, or have religion Dell will resolve this situation, we might purchase the AW3423DWF. You may save $200, get much less fan noise, consumer upgradeable firmware and fewer enter lag, that are all vital benefits.

Price mentioning that the opposite possibility is to attend to see how different fashions fare, like Samsung’s new G8 OLED, plus different fashions just like the upcoming MSI equal.

Purchasing Shortcuts:
  • Alienware AW3423DWF 34″ QD-OLED on Dell
  • Alienware AW3423DW 34″ QD-OLED on Amazon
  • Cooler Grasp Tempest GP27U on Amazon
  • Sony Inzone M9 on Amazon
  • Samsung Odyssey Neo G7 on Amazon
  • Asus ROG Swift PG32UQ on Amazon
  • LG C2 42″ OLED TV on Amazon
  • Asus ROG Swift PG32UQX on Amazon

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