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Upgrades Displays Hardware

ASUS PQ321Q Monitor Brings Multi-Stream Tiled Displays Forward 94

Vigile writes "While 4K displays have been popping up all over the place recently with noticeably lower prices, one thing that kind of limits them all is a 30 Hz refresh rate panel. Sony is selling 4K consumer HDTVs for $5000 and new-comer SEIKI has a 50-in model going for under $1000 but they all share that trait — HDMI 1.4 supporting 3840x2160 at 30 Hz. The new ASUS PQ321Q monitor is a 31.5-in 4K display built on the same platform as the Sharp PN-K321 and utilizes a DisplayPort 1.2 connection capable of MST (multi-stream transport). This allows the screen to include two display heads internally, showing up as two independent monitors to some PCs that can then be merged into a single panel via AMD Eyefinity or NVIDIA Surround. Thus, with dual 1920x2160 60 Hz signals, the PQ321Q can offer 3840x2160 at 60 Hz for a much better viewing experience. PC Perspective got one of the monitors in for testing and review and found that the while there were some hurdles during initial setup (especially with NVIDIA hardware), the advantage of a higher refresh rate made the 4K resolution that much better."
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ASUS PQ321Q Monitor Brings Multi-Stream Tiled Displays Forward

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  • so how much is this sharp one? why mention price of 5k and 1k?

    • by nefus ( 952656 )

      so how much is this sharp one? why mention price of 5k and 1k?

      A simple search reveals $3,500 at Newegg. Oh ok, for the anal types... it's $3,499.99.

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Newegg [] price for the ASUS monitor seems to be USD $3.5k

      For the Sharp [], it seems to be USD $5.3k

  • by Jah-Wren Ryel ( 80510 ) on Friday July 19, 2013 @07:23PM (#44333617)

    FYI, Seiki also has a 39" version of their 4K monitor/tv for only $700 MSRP. It is limited to 30Hz at 4K but will do faster at lower resolutions. You might even be able to convince it to do passive 3D, I haven't paid close attention to the people hacking at that on the 50" version. []

    • by dfghjk ( 711126 ) on Friday July 19, 2013 @08:04PM (#44333883)

      If it is anything like their 50", which I'm sure it is, the 30Hz limitation will be the least of its awful problems. It may be passable as a TV but not as a monitor.

      Of course, many people's standards are low and they wouldn't know better anyway. If you think DSLRs exhibit grain, it's the product for you. You won't notice the horrific color problems anyway.

      At least the screen size is right. I don't get the 30" screen size for this resolution. 50" is too big for a desktop.

      • by Anonymous Coward

        "50" is too big for a desktop."

        typing this from a 50" pioneer plasma acting as my compy's primary display. mount the thing on a wall, put a desk in the sweet spot (your mileage will vary), and its awesome... at least for gaming, light/moderate game development, internet videos, internet browsing, music playback (fullscreen foobar), and other media consumption stuffs.

        cant wait to get a quality 4k display do the same exact thing.

      • It may be passable as a TV but not as a monitor.

        Are you speaking from experience?

        • Of course he's not. I doubt he's even seen one other than at Google images.

          I am more than pleased with my 50" Seiki. It's been a great monitor so far, even with the 30Hz limitation. And I still have $2200 in my pocket to save up for the next batch that will do 60Hz via whatever input standard they settle on, whether it's Display Port MST or the new HDMI standard

      • It replaces 4x 25" 1080 displays with a single VESA mount. You mount it on the wall behind your desk. Use 4K for work and 1080p with a modest videocard for games. Sounds just about perfect.

        I'm not saying it's perfect for most people, but I'd prefer it to the 3x 32" 1080x1920 (sideways mounted) monitor setups I'm seeing.

      • by gl4ss ( 559668 )

        as long as the pixels are pixels.. why wouldn't it work as a monitor - if the colors are off why would it work better as a tv?

        I use a 55" monitor at home. of course it's like 2 meters away from me, wouldn't mind a 100" 4k at all.

  • by KiloByte ( 825081 ) on Friday July 19, 2013 @07:27PM (#44333647)

    16x9... pass.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      What a retarded post. What exactly is "unusable" about it?

      • by epyT-R ( 613989 )

        vertical vs horizontal space... Those who do more with their computers than watch broadcast tv prefer it.

        • You could buy a 9x16 monitor then.

        • by jon3k ( 691256 )
          Please name a 4:3 monitor with more vertical space, in either inches or pixels, than this monitor.
          • by Molochi ( 555357 )

            Exactly. 4k eclipses the argument. Heck, the argument against 16:9 has been moot since the switch from 1360x768 LCDs to 1080p panels.

            • Worst thing about a 1080p monitor is web sites are annoyingly wide in a maximized web browser. Coupled with lousy panels and leaky lighting, on the cheap panels at least, that can make a rather bad browsing experience.
              You can size the window so it takes about three quarters of your display area, now you have other windows/desktop icons and the like showing, which is ugly and distracting. And not that much space left for other apps (what are you going to do in a width of 500 or 600 pixels?),

            • by jon3k ( 691256 )
              My only complaint about 16:9 monitors is that multi-monitor setups become extremely wide and you waste a lot of vertical physical space. So for example, at 3x27", I have to turn my head extremely far side to side. I'd gladly sacrifice some horizontal pixels on each monitor. Unfortunately it's not an option.
              • I wish somebody would make a matched pair of LCD screens designed so that you'd have one ~24-30" in portrait orientation with 16:10 aspect ratio, and two more made from the second screen with 3:4 portrait orientation, the same vertical resolution & scale, and the same subpixel arrangement (when portrait) as the "middle" screen.

                Or, making the sizes a little more standard...

                Middle monitor: ~27", 1920x1280 (square pixel, 16:9 aspect ratio if you just ignore 200 of the vertical rows)
                Flanking monitors: 960x1

                • by jon3k ( 691256 )
                  For what it's worth, I think this might be what you're looking for: []

                  This is done with 3 dell monitors and is referred to as a "PLP" setup (Portrait-Landscape-Portrait). One 30" in landscape and two 20" monitors in portrait. I'm sure it doesn't meet all your criteria, but it might be a reasonable option for you. Good luck in your never ending search for the perfect monitor setup, I'm on the same hunt. Right now using 2x24 Dell 2408WFP on Ergotron LX
          • by Ed Avis ( 5917 )
            Not 4x3 but there is the 16x10 IBM T221, 3840x2400... I have three of them and I'd certainly buy a new monitor like this one if they'd made it with a sensible aspect ratio.
            • by jon3k ( 691256 )
              The color reproduction and refresh rate is so low it's basically useless as a modern monitor for 99% of uses. That's great that it works for you, but it's not even really worth discussing. It also requires four DVI inputs to drive it, if I remember correctly. It's also very expensive and has been produced since 2005. Also, as you pointed out, its 16:10.
              • by Ed Avis ( 5917 )
                Yeah I'm just talking about the aspect ratio and resolution. Another good example would be the 'retina' Macbook Pros - they are also 16:10 though not quite such a high number of pixels (the 15" has 3/4 as many pixels on both axes as the T221). But since you mention it, I wouldn't agree that a slow refresh rate or poor colour gamut rules out 99% of uses. Probably only about 5% of users require colour accuracy; the T221 is no worse than most monitors, photos look pretty good on it. (I use a wide-gamut mon
        • by Molochi ( 555357 )

          I do understand the OLD argument about 4:3 vs. 5:4 vs. 16:10 vs. 16:10

          But a 4k monitor is 2160pixels tall, so your only concern should be getting one big enough that you don't have to use increased font size to read notepad.

          • It would still be kind of nice to have a 2160 pixel high monitor that's not over 3 feet wide. That's my problem with the 27" 2560x1440 monitors - they are just too damn big and anything less than 27" in 16:9 is 1080p at best. Meanwhile you can get a 1600x1200 20" 4:3 monitor, at least while they still make them.

    • 16x9... pass.

      You holding out for 4:3?

      • 16x9... pass.

        You holding out for 4:3?


      • Get over it.

        4:3 is not coming back. Its old and appears odd today in the 21 century.

        Many apps like Office make use of the wide screen by by having more than 1 page up at a time. Eclipse and now VS 2012 put more toolboxen and tools to the right and left of the screen so this is not just for movies only.

        When I read these I image geeks still running Office 2003 fearing the ribbon, XP, and now having a 40 pound CRT monitor and living in the past fearing change. I find nothing wrong with 16 x9 and yes some of us

        • by Ed Avis ( 5917 )

          4:3 is not coming back. Its old and appears odd today in the 21 century.

          I suspect millions of Ipad users would disagree.

      • Honestly I don't have a problem with 4:3 monitors for desktop use. You must really like scrolling.

        • Erm... you realize that nobody in this thread implied that people have problems with 4:3 monitors, right?

          Actually, make that almost nobody. By posting this defensive response to your invisible friend, you implied that somebody - your invisible friend - has problems with 4:3.

    • by Kjella ( 173770 )

      You have 31.5 inches that'll be practically as much vertical space as a 30 inch 16:10 monitor and 2160 vertical pixels to work with, but it's unusable... fine by me, pass it this way ;)

      • by epyT-R ( 613989 )

        30hz is unusable for almost everything besides watching 4k tv. Plus the 30" panel forces the user to pan his head around. I'd rather have 2560x1600 in a 23" panel at 60hz, than 3840x2160 in a 30" panel at 30hz. Of course, they don't make the former either.

        • by jon3k ( 691256 )
          Good thing the ASUS does 4K @ 60hz. A 30" display doesn't force you to pan your head. Increase the font size. Put 2 apps side by side.
        • Plus the 30" panel forces the user to pan his head around.

          That's baloney.

          I am typing this on a 30" 2560x1600 panel right now. No panning needed.

          • That's baloney.

            I am typing this on a 30" 2560x1600 panel right now. No panning needed.

            Well, that's entirely a function of viewing distance, so YMMV applies to everybody. At my preferred distance, my 24" 16:10 monitor is about 2" too wide for my foveal field of view. Give me a 22" IPS or perhaps OLED at 200dpi, and my wallet will fall open. I found when switching from CRT to LED/LCD I could no longer see the scan lines, so sitting closer wound up being better. Plus no electron beam aimed at my brain, for

            • by Kjella ( 173770 )

              Plus no electron beam aimed at my brain, for whatever that might be worth.

              Not much, since the whole reason it needs to be a vacuum tube is because air would stop the beam.

        • By saying "almost everything" do you mean PC FPS games?

          • By saying "almost everything" do you mean PC FPS games?

            Which became effectively 2D due to monitor limitations.

            Compare the amount of 3D features in Doom (despite hard to design hacks) or Quake with that of this year's FPSes.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      If you want vertical space, 9:16 is also available :)
    • by Skrapion ( 955066 ) <> on Saturday July 20, 2013 @12:04AM (#44334947) Homepage

      Actually, if you like square monitors, this one is even better than a 4:3 display.

      Since there's no display standard that can do 4k at 60Hz, this monitor works around that limitation by conceptually presenting itself as two 8:9 monitors side-by-side.

      So not only do you get two monitors in one, but 8:9 is closer to square than 4:3.

  • by negRo_slim ( 636783 ) <> on Friday July 19, 2013 @07:35PM (#44333703) Homepage
    As these become more common it's going to be interesting to see how this affects SLR usage. I'm using a Nikon at 4928x3264 and it seems as screens approach that size I will at least lose some of my cropping range and also when you are viewing images close to 100% grain and other sometimes unavoidable artifacts become more apparent. I'm sure for people who do a lot of printing this will be a minimal issue but for sharing on Flickr and Google Plus this might force some wallets to open sooner rather than later!
    • by dfghjk ( 711126 ) on Friday July 19, 2013 @07:49PM (#44333773)


      What does screen size have to do with your "cropping range"? You believe the purpose of a camera is to fill your screen?

      People whose goal is to share on "Flickr and Google Plus" don't need DSLRs or 4K displays. People who don't realize that grain is a film characteristic don't either.

      • People whose goal is to share on "Flickr and Google Plus" don't need DSLRs or 4K displays. People who don't realize that grain is a film characteristic don't either.

        He probably meant image noise

        When viewed at less than 100% multiple pixels are averaged resulting in lower image noise being shown for the pixels that are displayed.

        At 100% the image is also softer because of the bayer filter nature of colour imaging sensors used in dslrs.

        But at these resolutions it _really_ doesn't matter. If viewing fullscreen the screen will be higher resolution than most people can easily discern anyway,.

        • That's the point. 31" is really too small for 4K. My 30" 2560x1600 has plenty of pixel density.

          What I really want is a 60 Hz 40" IPS 4K monitor.

          • by jon3k ( 691256 )

            31" is really too small for 4K.

            Only if you're further than 25" from it. [] At any distance closer than that, you'd be able to resolve individual pixels. Until pixels are so small they are invisible, pixel density isn't high enough.

            Furthermore, If you sit closer than 31" to a 40" monitor at 4K (as we all would), you'd be able to see individual pixels. So no, the pixel density on a 40" 4K monitor wouldn't be at the limit of normal visual acuity.

            • by Molochi ( 555357 )

              "Furthermore, If you sit closer than 31" to a 40" monitor at 4K (as we all would), "

              Why the fuck would I do that? Just put on the wall behind your desk. If you see pixels get a smaller monitor or just don't sit so close. If you can't read the text get a bigger monitor.

              • by jon3k ( 691256 )
                Because of the physical space available for most people at their desk. My desk, like most people, is 24" wide and sits against a wall. It's not really practical for most people to sit 3+ feet from a monitor. Why not just use a smaller monitor with higher pixel density and sit it closer? This saves physical desk space, power and reduces cost because it's cheaper to produce a smaller glass panel. I don't see the advantage of making the monitor larger and moving it back. That's a compromise we make in th
                • by Molochi ( 555357 )

                  FWIW I was primarily responding to the "we all would" statement. I'm not saying everybody wants what I want.

                  I really don't want a monitor on my desk right in front of my face and I've always disliked wasting my desk space with a monitor. This is at least a commonly enough held opinion, that it is rather easy to find massed produced ways to get around the "problem". I'm also not so confined by space at work or home that I "have to" sit close to the wall. For me it's about 4 feet from eyeball to wall. I also

                  • by jon3k ( 691256 )
                    I have a similar setup, I use Ergoton LX dual monitor mount (~$250) and a pair of Dell 2408WFP (1920x1200, 16:10). Sitting 4' from a wall while using a computer would definitely be an usual configuration. Or, more specifically 4 foot from a wall mounted display. I appreciate that we don't all have the same, or sometimes even similar, office configurations and that one size doesn't fit all. But as you of course know, to build quantities necessary to drive these cost downs into the realm of reason, we ha
                    • by Molochi ( 555357 )

                      I don't think quantity is going to be a problem as Humongous 4k LCDs become mainstream. It's the next inevitable "thing". I'm just suggesting a practical use for it.

            • Not being able to discern pixels is wasting information.

              It's a nice aesthetic effect but if you are looking at text or examining an image for critical purposes you want to be able to discern pixels.

              • by jon3k ( 691256 )
                I think you'd want a display to be JUST beyond the ability to resolve individual pixels. Any critical process that required viewing individual pixels provides a zoom function.
      • Grain?

        Yes grain. Just like when film was used. Even at low ISO with fast prime you will still see grain, especially at 100%.

        What does screen size have to do with your "cropping range"? You believe the purpose of a camera is to fill your screen?

        If I need an image 1000px wide today, I only need roughly a fourth of an image. But at these resolutions to fill the same space now will require more pixels, giving me less range of choice. And yes I do expect my camera to fill my screen, you'll notice "Full Size/Full Screen" a feature on my websites that allow sharing of images.

        People whose goal is to share on "Flickr and Google Plus" don't need DSLRs or 4K displays. People who don't realize that grain is a film characteristic don't either.

        Would you prefer I called it noise then? Either way it function

  • My TV box has HDMI out, my video camera has HDMI out, my surround receiver has HDMI in/out for pass-through, in fact the only places I can find DisplayPort is on graphics cards and screens mostly intended as monitors, not TVs. HDMI version 2.0 with 4K/UltraHD @ 60Hz support should be out any day now (it was scheduled for first half of 2013, apparently a little late) and unless they completely break backwards compatibility I think that's what everything will use. So unless you really want 4K right now(tm) ev

    • by dbIII ( 701233 ) on Friday July 19, 2013 @07:46PM (#44333761)
      It's looking as if 4k refers to the price more than the pixel width :(
    • by dfghjk ( 711126 ) on Friday July 19, 2013 @08:08PM (#44333911)

      It will take your TV box, your video camera, your surround sound receiver, and all the rest of your HDMI devices since it has HDMI inputs. Of course, those won't be 4K since none of your HDMI devices do 4K. The only devices that currently will use DisplayPort, thus that solution. So much for your complaint.

      • by Kjella ( 173770 )

        Obviously, but the point that people seem to be missing is that any one of those boxes is only likely to upgrade to anything compatible with HDMI 1.x. You get a HDMI 2.0 set top box? Well either it talks HDMI 1.x (1.4 probably, maybe 1.3) to your TV or it's a dud. Nobody's going to ship a DisplayPort-only TV until they're sure everyone has a DisplayPort source and nobody's going to ship a DisplayPort source-only device until they're sure everyone has a DisplayPort TV. It's always the extra that you might h

      • by gl4ss ( 559668 )

        multi stream could be either one.. just stick two hdmi cables into it.

    • by adolf ( 21054 )

      Seeing as it's sold as a computer monitor and not a television, I don't see a problem with using displayport.

      The only equipment between my computer and my monitor is a cable. It doesn't really matter to me if that cable is Displayport, HDMI, or DVI.

      (That said, will this monitor be ideal in my home theater? No, doublefuck no. But I don't really care about it for that -- it's the wrong application.)

  • I understand the need to split the screen into tiles to get a higher refresh rate with current connectivity options but it seems it would have made more sense to do it as three 1280x2160 panels because both of the major video card manufacturers are already on board with presenting three screens as a single display. Been doing it for ages now. Yeah, it's an extra cable to run but it works right now. Eyefinity from ATI and Surround from Nvidia would handle this just fine. At most they'd need a minor drive

    • 1280x2160 might be just over the spec that a single-link DVI or HDMI equipment can do. 1920x1200 or 2048x1152 are about max res, 2160x1280 would be resp. 20% and 17% more pixels than that. So in your suggestion, instead of two simultaneous high bandwith links, found on latest gen graphics cards/integrated GPU (not all of them, ommitting the displayport connector is popular), you now need three high bandwith links.

      • by unrtst ( 777550 )

        1280x2160 might be just over the spec that a single-link DVI or HDMI equipment can do.

        DVI-I can do 2.75 megapixels at 60 Hz. That's:
        16:10 = 2098 x 1311 = 2750478
        4:3 = 1915 x 1436 = 2749940
        5:4 = 1854 x 1483 = 2749482

        1280 x 2160 = 2764800 (too much).
        Or another way to say it: 3840 x 2160 = 8294400; 8294400 / 3 = 2764800

        Even two DVI-D links aren't really enough.
        Highest res 60 Hz on DVI-D is 2560 x 1600 = 4096000
        3840 x 2160 = 8294400; 8294400 / 2 = 4147200 ... I'd be quite happy with a 3200 x 2560 monitor though :-)

        • I'm trying to figure out how any of this refutes what I said. My gaming rig with two video cards has four dual-link DVI connections, two DisplayPort connections, and two HDMI connections. Right this very second, I'm typing on it as it treats three 2560x1440 monitors as a single 7680x1440 display device at 32 bits of color depth and 60Hz refresh rate using three dual-link DVI cables. Dual-link DVI cables aren't sorcery. They start at $4.19 at monoprice.

  • "In order to address these scale/DPI issues, in Window 8.1 the maximum DPI scaling value was increased from 150% to 200%"

    So, basically, somewhere between XP/2003 and windows 8, Microsoft removed the 200% scaling option? Lets hear it for progress, windows 8.1 now with features we had 14 years ago. What next overlapping windows?

    Ha, no wonder people keep complaining about windows scaling.

    Also, per their full screen chrome screenshot, maybe the guy in charge of the pcper style sheet should consider that fixed w

    • So, basically, somewhere between XP/2003 and windows 8, Microsoft removed the 200% scaling option?

      Same for multi-monitor task bars. Dropped in WinXP, brought back in Windows 8.

      In other news, the chocolate ration has been increased to 20 grams.

  • IBM's T221 [] monitor, the now ancient 3840x2400 22" 200dpi display, did the exact same thing.

    It had 4 DVI inputs (newer models can support 2 dual-link DVIs), splitting up the screen into 1-4 stripes, depending on your bandwidth and setup. It's also directly plug & play, with no setup issues whatsoever on Linux, for what it's worth, and max frame rate is simply bound to how large each link is offering.

    I've got a single card driving 2 T221s at a whopping 12Hz (single-link DVI each), and some low-res 30" 25

    • by jon3k ( 691256 )
      They're driving it over a single Displayport 1.2 using MST. It's new technology that hasn't fully developed yet. The advantage will be that it can be done over a single small displaylink cable, instead of using 4 DVI cables. It will also do it at 60hz (if not more).
  • by Anonymous Coward

    it seems that we need an ACTIVE DisplayPort to HDMI 1.4 adapter (which I have ordered but are still not yet available) to get it to work correctly

    The requirement to use active DisplayPort to HDMI adapters on AMD cards has been around since 2009 when the Eyefinity-6 SKU of the HD 5800 cards were released. This lowers the cost of the cards for end users who don't run multimonitor configurations by leaving some costly components off the card and putting them in the dongles instead. I take issue with anyone claiming expertise in display technology who does not understand this.

  • ASUS is far better than rivals including HP

Did you hear that two rabbits escaped from the zoo and so far they have only recaptured 116 of them?