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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  • Taracta - Tuesday, April 1, 2014 - link

    I don't know what is considered by many as HiDPI but this monitor is most definitely not HiDPI at just 140 DPI! I know that most highend monitors are ~ 100 DPI and common one are even lower but I don't see why 140 DPI would be such a big deal. Are the Icons that much smaller? Are the alphanumeric character unreadable?

    I believe the the ridiculously low DPI of generations of monitor has made expectation of huge icons and lettering the norm and they are just not needed. You can see the icons and characters perfectly fine at 140DPI no scaling is needed!
  • houkouonchi - Friday, April 4, 2014 - link

    Yeah I think its just people set in their ways. Even when I had an out-dated prescription and saw worse than 20/20 I still would have no problem with that size. The only thing I can think of is that is just how most people have used computers and are stuck in their ways. I used 1600x1200 on a 17 inch CRT way back in the days (pre windows-2000) and soon after when I switched to linux I was 2560x1920 on a 22 inch CRT. It was even a bit blurry but it was still not a problem and that was 160 PPI. With a super sharp 140 PPI display why do people need scaling? I don't use scaling even on a 200 PPI+ display.
  • JDG1980 - Tuesday, April 1, 2014 - link

    Personally, I'd like to see a 39" 4K monitor, using the same VA panel in the Seiki TV but with a 60 Hz input. The Seiki TV is OK for productivity apps, but if you play any games or watch videos, as I do, then the low frame rate is a deal-breaker.

    A 39" monitor at 4K would provide an absolutely huge workspace - you would no longer need a multiple monitor setup. And the DPI isn't much higher than a standard 27" 2560x1440 monitor, so you don't need to use the Windows scaling that so many applications still don't do properly. (Microsoft really needs to do something about this - right now they seem content just to hope everyone eventually moves to Metro, which they aren't and won't.)
  • sk317bge - Tuesday, April 1, 2014 - link

    Chris H. - does the Dell preset for Game exist? On my 24", the Game mode has less lag (by many milliseconds), with a tradeoff that the color is a bit too overdriven.
  • GTVic - Tuesday, April 1, 2014 - link

    May be UltraHD in comparison to a TV, but 138 DPI is something I would sneeze at. A 50% increase in pixel density compared to a standard 16:10 24" monitor with 94 DPI is not enough.
  • lokitx - Tuesday, April 1, 2014 - link

    Everyone should read this before purchasing this monitor:
  • praeses - Tuesday, April 1, 2014 - link

    You mention the usefulness of contrast over brightness in this instance. As LED monitors do lose a notable amount of brightness over time, are you able to re-test the brightness of a monitor that you have previously tested and recorded the numbers on and report the differences?

    I suspect over the long term having a monitor that can go brighter than needed may be more useful than suspected.
  • Human Bass - Tuesday, April 1, 2014 - link

    It was looking quite decent, but that lag, wow, seems like a motion blur city.
  • cjl - Wednesday, April 2, 2014 - link

    Lag does not cause motion blur. Lag is how long a display takes to react to an input, and is usually (in the case of displays like this) caused by a delay in the image processing circuitry in the display itself. Motion blur on the other hand would be caused by a slow pixel response time (where the pixels themselves take a long time to change states after the display has already begun to refresh).
  • Death666Angel - Tuesday, April 1, 2014 - link

    I'm more looking for the 28" Dell one, much better price/performance for me. 600€ is nearly as much as I paid for my 1440p monitor not that long ago. Incredible.

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