BenQ SW320 4K UHD Monitor

BenQ announced 32″ IPS 4K monitor for photographer last year Oct 2016.  This wide gamut SW320 monitor offers 100% RGB, 99% Adobe RGB colour spaces coverage.  And 10 bit panel which capable to display smooth gradient with million colour.

I did not pay attention to BenQ 32″ monitor because my eye was attracted to the LG UltraFine 5K monitor announced by Apple.  I want to have the Glossy 27″ monitor together with my existing 27″ Dell U2711 which is Matte screen with 96% Adobe RGB and 100% RGB colour.

Mid Jan 2017, I put an order to get the Apple LG UltraFine 5K monitor from Apple website to take advantage of the around $500 CAD discount they current offer.  The colour from the LG UltraFine 5K support 99% DCI-P3 colour space.  It’s very bright and saturate colour made the photography vibrated.  Very attractive monitor compared to my 6 years old Dell U2711 which only have 2560×1440 resolution.  There are no comparison on the pixel detail of the monitor.  Is the LG UltraFine 5K P3 good for photographer  for editing the photos on?  Every photos on the LG UltraFine 5K look so good and awesome on the monitor even the iPhone photos, it doesn’t show any flaws of the photo especially low night noise.  We know the iPhone photos are not that good but the monitor made it so perfect on the monitor.  Everything seem so good until….

Early Feb 2017, Apple released the announcement that the LG UltraFine 5K is having shielding issue which interference with the router signal.  Apple advised the owner to contact LG for the hardware repaired support.  I called Apple to check if my monitor still eligible for a refund since my monitor still within a month.  The Apple Support confirmed they can extend the refund period to one month since there are shielding issue. Bingo!

Dell U2711 side by side with LG UltraFine 5K

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Dell U2711, LG UltraFine 5K together with Apple 12.9″ iPad Pro.

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Spent couple days looked around for another monitor.  Found the BenQ SW320 4K UHD monitor which offers 100%RGB, 99% Adobe RGB colour which fit my bill.  The BenQ SW320 came with the Huge box.  It look humongous.

Packing is excellent,  took around 15 mins to assemble the monitor.

 

Both Dell 27″ U2711 and BenQ 32″ SW320 sitting on my desk.

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Un-Colour Calibrated BenQ SW320 look too bright and off colour compared to the colour calibrated Dell U2711.  Note that the photos here can’t show the real colour for the Dell U2711.

Again, the BenQ SW320 look huge on the desk.

BenQ SW320 offered the Calibrated Software which can be download from there website.  It’s support the X-Rite i1 Display Pro 1 /2, Spyder 4/5.  I have the i1 Display Pro, calibrating the monitor is easy and straightforward. Luminous set to 120, white balance to D65.  Everything is automatic…  but it takes awhile to finish the calibration.

After colour calibration, looks awesome. But the Dell U2711 is not photo friendly.  It’s a too magenta in the following photo.

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Have not calibrate my Dell U2711 for more than a month,  have to re-calibrate it to compare to the newly acquired BenQ SW320 monitor.   They both look very similar and only have very subtle different between these two monitor.  Surely the BenQ SW320 provide more detail on the pixel level, the photos look a bit sharper.  But the 6 years old Dell U2711 is not far behind.

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Only Red colour look very tiny different between the two monitors.
The BenQ SW320 is an excellent monitor for photographer, if you already have a Dell like the one I had Dell U2711.  I will not recommend to get the BenQ SW320.  There is not much gain between the two monitors.  Except you are looking for more resolution and bigger screen estate for editing photos.  Again, the photos on the BenQ SW320 full screen look incredible.  If you don’t have any IPS panel, wide-gamut monitor, it’s definitely a good investment.  Highly Recommended in that case!

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