Acer has long-represented a quiet competence in the gaming monitor arena. Rather than flashy styling and mega-refresh rates, the company chooses to deliver reliable performance in a simpler package that's often priced lower than the competition. Curved monitors come in many different radii, and only the end-user can decide which is best for them. For those seeking a little less curve in their curved display, there’s the Predator X34 with a 3800R radius. We first reviewed this excellent screen two years ago, and today we’re looking at an updated model, the X34P, which currently sells for about $1,100. It has the same 3440x1440 resolution and G-Sync as before, but the refresh rate is now a reliable 120Hz with overclock, and the panel wraps around more with a 1900R curve radius. It's also still one of the few Nvidia-focused monitors to forgo ultra-low motion blur (ULMB) support.
Yes, you read correctly above, the Predator X34P does not have ULMB. Is that an issue? We don’t think so. While we have no hard data on how many gamers actually use the feature, it’s never mentioned in reader comments. And since it inevitably reduces both peak light output and contrast, we can’t see it’s benefit over G-Sync. Until it works at higher refresh rates (a few monitors can run it at 144Hz but most are limited to 120), we’ll always choose adaptive sync to keep the action smooth and artifact-free.
Acer’s new panel part brings a more-reliable 120Hz refresh rate to the table. We’ve heard reports of X34s that could not exceed their native 75Hz without flickering. The X34P runs at 100Hz out of the box and 120Hz with the overclock setting engaged. Our sample ran for a week of intense testing and gameplay without a hiccup at its maximum speed. We call that a problem solved.
The curve is now more pronounced at 1900R versus the X34’s 3800R. It’s an obvious change and one that increases the wraparound effect and sense of immersion. If you check out our review of the original Predator X34, you can easily compare the top-down photos to see the difference.
At 34 inches, the Predator X34P is on the small end of the curved monitor universe. We’re seeing an increase in size with 35” and 38” screens becoming more common. And Samsung’s monstrous CHG90 49-incher just arrived at our lab for testing. It seems that panels just keep getting bigger. Let’s dive into the ample carton and see what’s new.
|Brand & Model||Acer Predator X34P|
|Panel Type & Backlight||IPS / W-LED, edge array|
|Screen Size & Aspect Ratio||34" / 21:9|
Curve Radius - 1900mm
|Max Resolution & Refresh||3440x1440 @ 100Hz|
Density - 110ppi
|Native Color Depth & Gamut||10-bit (8-bit+FRC) / sRGB|
|Response Time (GTG)||4ms|
|Speakers||2 x 7w|
|Video Inputs||1 x DisplayPort 1.2|
1 x HDMI 1.4
|Audio||3.5mm headphone output|
|USB||v3.0 - 1 x up, 4 x down|
|Power Consumption||46w, brightness @ 200 nits|
|32.1 x 17.2-22.1 x 12"|
815 x 437-561 x 305mm
|Panel Thickness||4.1" / 104mm|
|Bezel Width||Top/sides - .4" / 11mm|
Bottom - .8" / 21mm
|Weight||21.4lbs / 9.7kg|
The X34P ships fully-assembled; you simply pull it out of the box by its stout handle. Every computer monitor, regardless of type should have a handle at the top of the stand. So let it be written. So let it be done.
The cable bundle consists of a medium-sized power supply brick, HDMI, DisplayPort, and USB 3.0 cables. A small cover snaps over the input panel along with a stand clip to help keep wires tidy. A printed quick-start guide is in the box, along with the warranty card. A user manual can be downloaded from Acer’s website. For monitor arm users, an adapter bracket with 100mm VESA holes is included that bolts on with supplied hardware.
The second photo above clearly shows the difference between the Predator X34P and its predecessor. The curve is quite a bit more obvious and we think it’s an improvement. Even the most severely-curved screens manage to display their images without distortion, so that’s not a worry. For us, the more it wraps around, the better. And given the relatively small 34” screen, every little bit helps. The front layer is flush-mounted, so the bezel effectively disappears when the monitor’s off. A thin 11mm frame can be seen when an image is on the screen; zero-frame just isn’t quite a reality yet, but we're getting there. The anti-glare factor is high here, but we saw no grain or sparkle effects, just a clear picture.
The stand is updated as well, with a new swivel feature courtesy of a cool-looking bearing that is prominently displayed. It includes small tick marks so you can see when the panel and base are perfectly aligned. The mechanism moves with firm precision and stays where you put it. The same is true of the nearly 5” height adjustment, which operates with the same solid feel. Swivel is 30° in each direction, with 35° back tilt and 5° forward. The stand looks a bit slight, but is actually solid as a rock. It’s all-metal, with a generous 12” depth. Your Predator X34P isn’t going anywhere, unless someone picks it up by the handle on top.
The styling hasn’t changed much, but the chassis’ plastic cover and trim is now all-matte, rather than the gloss-black used before. That will help squash annoying reflections in dark rooms, and it fits in nicely with the stand’s black anodized finish. The same angles are still there, with a good amount of ventilation provided by the strip across the back. Also hiding in there are a pair of excellent speakers driven by seven watts of amplification apiece. They play nice and loud without distortion and even provide a fair amount of bass at times; the speakers are definitely a cut above the norm.
From the side you can see an OSD joystick and four control keys. The top button is a power toggle and is separated from the rest to prevent accidental shut-downs. The remaining three are programmable in the OSD. The joystick makes dialing in the Predator X34P very easy, and is also an upgrade from the X34.
Inputs face downwards and include just one each of HDMI and DisplayPort. Also here is a 3.5mm audio jack for headphones or powered speakers. The USB ports are version 3.0 and face back, which is very convenient. You get one upstream port and four downstream ports.
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