Dell UltraSharp U2711 27” Monitor Review
Sean W. Gibson / Jan 5th, 2012 No Comments
The Dell UltraSharp U2711 Monitor boasts a 27” screen size and 2560×1440 resolution with over a billion colors, a 6ms response time and a 80,000:1 dynamic contrast ratio. Sure, this monitor has been out for a while, but forums still rage on asking if this monitor is good for PC gaming. In this review we’ll give you our impressions using this monitor on our high-end gaming rig and let you know if this is a true viable upgrade alternative to your existing 22” or 24” monitor.
The SpecsThe Dell UltraSharp U2711 is a 27” monitor and runs at a resolution of 2560×1440. The quick note there is that you’ll need to account for the higher level of resolution when running your games. Some of your older games won’t run this high and most of the newer games will, of course, but you’ll have to account for much greater needs from your video card.
The monitor has a 16:9 aspect ration and 109 pixels per inch, with 6ms response time and a maximum dynamic contrast ratio of 80,000:1. There’s a ton of connectivity options via HDMI port, DisplayPort (with audio), DVI-D, USB and VGA ports. Note that some of these ports do not support the full 2560×1440 resolution level. In fact, only the DVI-D and DisplayPort options will allow for that and we did all of our testing with the DVI-D port and cable (included!). If you’re a snob that doesn’t know what DVI-D even is, look it up, it’s great and will work fine for 99% of you PC gamers out there.
The monitor also has In-Plane Switching Technology, also known as IPS, which allows for amazing color consistency no matter what angle you are sitting at. There’s also factory-tuned Adobe RGB and sRGB modes that minimize the time for color calibration and every single monitor (including ours) ships with a factory certified color-calibration report.
The 27” U2711 offers the ability to adjust the height of the stand with tilt and swivel features. You can also detach the panel from the stand for wall mounting. Finally, the monitor also has four side USB ports and a media-card reader that makes plugging things in a lot easier.
Dell offers a “Premium Panel Guarantee” which states that you will receive a free panel exchange should even one bright defective pixel appear on the screen during the warranty period. The warranty is a 3-year limited hardware warranty with three years of Dell Advanced Exchange service.
For the MMO / RPG / RTS GamerRejoice! This monitor seriously kicks some ass. As someone that almost exclusively plays MMOs such as World of WarCraft and Star Wars: The Old Republic and RTS games like StarCraft II, playing these games on this monitor is a revelation. The higher resolution looks fabulous on a 27” monitor and playing at a 1920×1080 resolution (as you would with other branded 27″ monitors) would have looked terrible compared to our experience with this U2711 monitor at 2560×1440.
The colors and brightness are absolutely amazing, coming from a solid Samsung 24” model that was a few years old. It’s seriously a world of difference and everything else you’ll stare at will look silly in comparison. This monitor absolutely holds up for these types of games just fine. No ghosting, no lag, no problems at all.
For the FPS Snob
For the FPS gamers that are snobbish about their monitors and response times out of necessity, this is where the U2711 may not be the absolute best choice. Frankly, we haven’t seen a 27” monitor yet that truly stacks up to the high performing 1ms 24” IPS monitors from Dell or other vendors. If you aren’t that snobbish about how your monitor performs, then this monitor is great. Playing CoD MW3 played just fine and I certainly didn’t notice lag or ghosting, but to say I’m even at a casual level for FPS games on a PC would be generous.
What’s This I Hear About Coating?
Dell puts on this anti-glare coating that some people have said “destroys the image quality” which is frankly a gross exaggeration. Yes, there is anti-glare coating and it does seem to be put on a little thick. You’ll notice it most when putting your face about 6” away from the monitor and staring at a completely white screen. When playing games however, you shouldn’t notice it one bit if you sit at a reasonable distance. It absolutely does not destroy image quality or warp text – that’s just plainly false.
Overall Gamer Impression of the Dell U2711 27” Monitor
Overall, the Dell U2711 27” Monitor is an absolute winner. The price tag currently sits at $999 retail from the Dell.com website, but third party vendors have it well below that price. Trolling sites like SlickDeals (forums) will occasionally alert you to sales at Dell along with stackable coupons that bring the price of this monitor to about $800 – SHIPPED. For that price, if you’re a PC gamer that wants to have one hell of a visual experience, then this monitor is about as good as you can possibly buy.
tags: hardware , monitor , review