Last year I spent time with one of the first UltraHD monitors to be come out and came away convinced of the benefits. Even though the screen size was not much larger than my usual display, the extra clarity and detail was totally worth it. It sealed my decision to buy a MacBook Pro Retina when it was updated last fall as well. Now we’ve seen the field of UltraHD displays expand considerably and so we now look at another 32” UltraHD display, the Dell UP3214Q.

The Dell UP3214Q is very similar to the ASUS PQ321Q that I looked at last year. Both are 32” and both feature a 3840x2160 resolution. They are also both saddled with one of the current UltraHD weaknesses: a requirement that you have DisplayPort 1.2 MST support to get 60 Hz refresh rates. However, the Dell UP3214Q does have a few higher-end features that the ASUS lacks to help set it apart.

The first feature is that it supports the full AdobeRGB color gamut and not the more limited sRGB gamut. Since these initial UltraHD monitors are expensive and more likely to be used by professionals than home users, this support can go a long way. Second it has built-in support for Dell’s calibration software that lets you set two presets to be whatever settings you desire. If you have day and night settings, or different settings for online vs. print, this can be accomplished.

It also offers a larger selection of inputs than the ASUS model. With HDMI 1.4, DisplayPort, and MiniDisplayPort options you can connect it to two 60Hz UltraHD sources at once instead of just a single PC. This is most useful for those that wish to use it with a laptop as well as a desktop. Like many of the upper-end Dell displays it also features a 4-port USB 3.0 hub as well as a media card reader on the side. Unfortunately all of the USB 3.0 ports are hard to access on the rear instead of placing a pair on the side. I swap out my monitors more than 99.9% of the population but I hate having the USB ports being so hard to access.

The updated Dell design features a metal trim around the border which gives it a modern, semi-industrial look and also seems to work as a way to dissipate heat. I found this out as trying to adjust the monitor from the top after it has been on for a few hours can cause it to get quite warm. An IR temperature gun gave me readings of almost 130F. I’ve had monitors get warm to the touch before but the Dell UP3214Q is certainly the hottest so far, and that's quite surprising considering it uses LED backlighting. The stand that the Dell includes is also a new industrial design but still includes height adjustment, tilt, swivel and a way to route cables. There is no pivot so if you want to use your 32” UltraHD display in Portrait mode you’ll need to use the 100mm VESA mounts with a different stand.

Dell also has their on-screen menu system that I still think is the best in the business. They’ve made an unfortunate move to touch-sensitive buttons but the overall user interface is still the same. From an ergonomics perspective the Dell is an overall winner. I’d like to see them find a way to side-mount the inputs so they are easier to access, and move a couple USB ports around, but overall it is good.

Viewing angles, as an IPS display, are fantastic. I’d be hesitant about a TN panel of this size because off-angle issues could arise far too easily but it is not a problem with the Dell. With specs, ergonomics, and the on-screen display of the Dell UP3214Q there is not much that I find issue with...well, other than a high price, but that's expected.

Dell UP3214Q
Video Inputs HDMI 1.4a, DisplayPort, Mini DisplayPort
Panel Type IGZO IPS
Pixel Pitch 0.182mm
Colors 1.07 Billion
Brightness 350 cd/m2
Contrast Ratio 1000:1
Response Time 8ms GtG
Viewable Size 32"
Resolution 3840x2160
Viewing Angle (H/V) 176 / 176
Backlight LED
Power Consumption (operation) 100W Typical, 170W Max
Power Consumption (standby) 1.2W Typical
Screen Treatment Anti-Glare
Height-Adjustable Yes, 3.5"
Tilt Yes
Pivot No
Swivel Yes
VESA Wall Mounting Yes, 100mm
Dimensions w/ Base (WxHxD) 29.5" x 19" x 8.4"
Weight 20.3 lbs.
Additional Features 4 port USB 3.0 hub, card reader
Limited Warranty 3 years
Accessories MiniDP to DP Cable, USB 3.0 cable, power cord
Price $3,499 (Currently $2800)


UltraHD Today: Still Not There
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  • MrPete123 - Tuesday, April 1, 2014 - link

    Hey Chris, I have the similar UP2414Q and have the same issues of having to "reboot" the monitor frequently when waking my computer up from sleep. You said you were able to update your firmware for the 32" monitor. Is there one for the 24" model as well? I was not able to find one.
  • cheinonen - Tuesday, April 1, 2014 - link

    I'll update the article but I got the firmware from Dell. You would need to return your monitor to them and exchange it for a refurbished model with the updated firmware it sounds like.
  • aron9621 - Tuesday, April 1, 2014 - link

    Where did you get the firmware update from? I own a UP2414Q and experience the issues you described in your article (the need to power cycle the monitor most of the time after the computer goes to sleep is driving me crazy), but I couldn't find a firmware update on Dell's site.
  • davepermen - Tuesday, April 1, 2014 - link

    Windows can scale each display independently. Most desktop apps don't support that yet and get blurry. But Windows itself is definitely there and works just fine. Now it's the app developers who have to step up.
  • aron9621 - Tuesday, April 1, 2014 - link

    They claim in can, but it doesn't work properly. I have two displays connected to my computer, a 2414Q (2160p) and a 2414H (1200p). I can either say I want to use the same scaling for both displays, in which case I am allowed to specify the DPI scaling, or I can choose to use separate scalings for the monitors, which is utterly broken - Windows guesses ("detects") the proper DPI scaling and if I am not satisfied it allows me to scale both display simultaneously, but not separately, which is kind of brain dead, especially since it doesn't guess (ehm.. detect) the DPI properly on the 4k display. Aside that, using the same (200%) scaling on both screens breaks some DPI unaware applications, but letting Windows use separate DPI scalings breaks most DPI unaware apps. In either case, the 1200p screen is useless as everything is too big, or the 4k display has elements so tiny you can't work with it without a magnifying glass. Why I can't simply state I want to have 180dpi on screen 1 and 100dpi on screen 2 is beyond me.
  • Penti - Tuesday, April 1, 2014 - link

    That's still not true.

    If you set your primary display to 120% and your secondary to 200% the 200% will actually be 120% bitmap scaled. Or wise versa. One screen will always look rubbish and blurry. Read what Microsoft says instead of broad claims!
  • BMNify - Tuesday, April 1, 2014 - link

    " With PremierColor, your monitor provides superb color accuracy and 99% AdobeRGB and 100% sRGB coverage."

    this is an April fool right ! at $3,499/$2800, under no circumstance is any real certified UHD-1
    Rec. 2020 real color space 10bit per pixel "UHD-1" 3840x2160P 16:9 ratio panel going to give you only 99% AdobeRGB at best

    "In coverage of the CIE 1931 color space
    the Rec. 2020 color space covers 75.8%,
    the digital cinema reference projector color space covers 53.6%,
    the Adobe RGB color space covers 52.1%, and
    the Rec. 709 color space covers 35.9%."
  • cheinonen - Tuesday, April 1, 2014 - link

    I don't believe I ever said it has full Rec. 2020 coverage. Nothing has Rec. 2020 coverage as aside from lasers (I've been told), nothing can produce the gamut required. Not LEDs, not quantum dots, nothing. The display claims AdobeRGB and sRGB gamut which is what it has.
  • BMNify - Wednesday, April 2, 2014 - link

    "Nothing has Rec. 2020 coverage as aside from lasers (I've been told), nothing can produce the gamut required. "

    :) he is wrong OC as they would not and could not ratify the 2020 spec if they could not already produce the results it lays out, the guy was probably trying to sell the Mitsubishi LaserVue panels with their use a laser for red and regular LED’s for blue and green...

    rather than just state they can ill point you to this page as you will probably find it interesting... the quantum dots and the M3 film are cool too

    for the less interested ill just add this paste...
    "Rec. 2020

    Much like with Rec. 470, Rec. 601 and Rec. 709 the Rec. 2020 standard is more than just a color space. It is the standard for Ultra High Definition Television (UHD-TV), which knows two versions: 4K (3840x2160 and 4096x2160) and 8K (7680x4320 and 8192x4320). Apart from the obvious improvement in resolution over the Rec. 709 standard, the Rec. 2020 standard also improves upon its predecessor in many other ways. The maximum frame rate doubles from 60 Hz progressive to 120 Hz progressive (interlaced resolutions are no longer supported, which is good). The color depth also increases by at least 2 bits per channel, with the possibility of 4 bits. Because Rec. 709 and Rec. 2020 both use studio swing /narrow band, this does not result in the usual 16.8 million, 1.07 billion and 68.7 billion colors though.

    Bit depth per channel
    Reference black level
    Reference white level
    Usable combinations per channel
    Total number of colors

    Last but not least, the Rec. 2020 offers significant improvement over the Rec. 709 standard when it comes to the color gamut: nearly twice the size of its predecessor. It uses three monochromatic primaries with wavelengths of 630, 532 and 467 nm. This results in a very large gamut, but without most of the drawbacks of even larger color spaces like the Adobe Wide Gamut RGB color space.

    Most of the thought process behind the origin of these primaries can be found in ITU Recommendation BT 2246-2:2012. The summarized version is that UHD-TV should have a larger color gamut in order to cover the real surface colors (based on Pointer’s gamut and SOCS database) as much as possible using real primaries."

    what is clear is that much like the PCISIG the ethernet SIG etc the panel entities are also not fit for purpose as they dragged their feet actually producing new panels and ened to end kit to the latest specs that where in effect made by NHK and the BBC R&D...
  • tjoynt - Tuesday, April 1, 2014 - link

    For my data point: using the Mac 10.9.3 with HiDPI on an UltraHD display is gorgeous. If you have a Mac that can handle it (I have a 2012 Macbook Retina, as a reference point), you should definitely try it. It's like the retina display but huge. My eyes are finally happy.

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