Medium-sized 4K displays have thankfully come down in price since their introduction, now costing less than £300 (approximately $400/AU$520), making them competitive with ultra-wide 21:9 monitors.
With a price of less than £220 on Amazon, the AOC U2879VF is one of the cheapest 4K 28-inch monitors in the UK right now.
Given that price and our previous experience with first-generation 4K displays of that size, we’d expect a few corners to be shaved in order to reduce the price.
The only significant disappointment is that AOC chose a TN panel rather an IPS panel, which is acceptable considering the target price.
Is it reasonable to assume that the overall performance would be poor? Certainly not. In fact, AOC is the only vendor we’re aware of to include a ‘color uniformity data sheet’ with a monitor that costs less than £300.
The screen’s brightness uniformity and sRGB average Delta E color temperature are detailed in the A4 paper. Both of the monitor’s measurements (luminance ranged between 100 and 101 percent, and Delta E was 2.29) are well within AOC’s acceptable range.
This monitor has a lot more to offer than that. It’s also the cheapest one we’ve seen with FreeSync, AMD’s adaptive refresh technology that eliminates tearing, stuttering, and ghosting, making it excellent for gaming on AMD-based PCs.
The monitor comes with a glossy piano bezel, a matte display, and a metal plate that is screwed to the stand out of the box. The external power supply may irritate some of you who prefer an integrated design.
Three cords are included (HDMI, VGA, and DP), which is a pleasant departure from most vendors who just package one. When pressed, the control buttons on the lower edge of the display, to the right of the AOC logo, generate a reassuring, audible click.
Unfortunately, there is no VESA mount, so you’ll have to rely on the stand. The display can’t be rotated either; it only tilts slightly (-5/+24 degrees).
With AOC’s exclusive flicker-free technology smoothing out the viewing experience, the U2879VF has a 1ms reaction time. The 10-bit ‘Deep Color’ RGB display panel from Innolux improves this even more, allowing for a far larger color gamut.
MHL-compatible HDMI (v2.0), DisplayPort, VGA, and DL-DVI are among the monitor’s rear-facing ports. In PiP (Picture-in-Picture) or PbP (Picture-by-Picture) modes, you’ll be able to combine two or more of them.
There are no speakers, but there is a headphone jack. The monitor is relatively thin for a screen of this size and weighs roughly 8kg, making it easy to transport.
The brightness and contrast ratio are respectively 300cd/m2 and 1000:1. We were more than satisfied with the viewing experience in the actual world. The visual quality was more than adequate for casual office use, and the colors were vivid without being harsh. Given that this is a TN panel, the viewing angles were adequate.
You may always fiddle with the OSD settings, which offer a surprising amount of flexibility. The monitor’s online handbook has more information.
You can also utilize AOC’s proprietary i-menu, which is a software-based display control panel, instead of the OSD. Screen+, which is essentially an upgraded version of Windows Snap and can split your desktop into several panels, is another intriguing utility.
This monitor packs a punch, with exceptional value for money, good color accuracy, and useful features like PiP and uniformity compensation. There are a few small flaws, but none of them are significant enough to detract from this monitor’s main selling factors.
Businesses would like it for its PiP capability, cost, and flicker-free feature, which may lessen the risk of headaches. When you add in a great design, a three-year guarantee, and some useful tools, you’ve got a monitor that’s almost perfect, at least for a business monitor.
(At techradar pro, we believe that upgrading to a 4K display is one of the best investments any business or professional can make to boost their productivity.)
The only other monitor in this price bracket that we’ve lately evaluated is Hannspree’s HU282PPS. The only way to save money is to buy a 23.6-inch 4K monitor (several are around £200 – about $265, AU$350) or a 40-inch 4K television (for as little as £220 – around $290, AU$385), but neither of these solutions has the refinement of a 28-inch solution.
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