February 14, 2017 at 9:19 pm #41612
Howdy! This is a broad question. I’ve looked through and read many of the reviews on this site as well as their respective product pages, and some YouTube videos.
At $949 on Amazon, there seems to be no better option. One of its predecessors, the Samsung S34E790C, received what I would consider to be a good review on this site. Most of the problems listed in the “Negatives” set has been resolved.
Is there any outstanding reason not to get this monitor? Surely I haven’t missed a more obvious choice, but I’d love to be corrected before dropping nearly a thousand dollars.
At Amazon, of course.February 14, 2017 at 9:31 pm #41614
Hi there gkubed,
Well that is quite a tough one to answer, because although I have not yet tested the monitor myself (Samsung have failed to provide a sample so far) I am confident that it will provide a very convincing all-round performance. This is based in part on user feedback, which has been largely positive (certain FreeSync issues aside) and also my testing of the ASUS MX34VQ which uses a similar panel.
I think the ASUS MX34VQ is an interesting one to compare the C34F791 with. That review should give a decent indication of what to expect, but there are a few key differences.
– The Samsung offers a slightly wider colour gamut due to its use of Quantum Dots instead of phosphors on the backlight. It’s not a massive difference, but will provide a bit of extra vibrancy. I wouldn’t say the ASUS was lacking in that department to be honest, but a hint of extra vibrancy could be welcome by some users anyway.
– The Samsung offers a stronger curve (1500R vs. 1800R). I actually prefer steeper curves, at least comparing the 1800R of the ASUS with the 3000R or so curve of the older S34E790C and suchlike. And I feel a bit of extra curve beyond the 1800R of the ASUS could be quite nice.
– The Samsung as a little more expensive.
– The Samsung has a height-adjustable stand, which is nice, and supports VESA mounting. The ASUS has a Qi wireless charger built into the base which I actually found quite useful, but I would put it low down my list of priorities really.
– The Samsung has more noticeable ‘FreeSync flicker’. This was noted in our review of the ASUS between 45 – 50Hz, whereas on the Samsung it occurs over a broader range (I think up to 80Hz if you have ‘FreeSync’ set to ‘Ultimate Engine’). As I noted in the ASUS review, I only see FreeSync as a bonus and I much preferred the experience at the highest possible frame rates – and in my case, a solid 100fps where possible on my more powerful Nvidia GPU.
So all things considered, I feel the C34F791 will offer a very pleasing gaming and general computing experience. I can give you far more reasons to go for it than I could to stay away from it. As long as you’re prepared to expect some issues with FreeSync (maybe you use an Nvidia GPU or don’t really care about this feature anyway) and also are aware of a few slight weaknesses with pixel responsiveness. Then you won’t be setting yourself up for disappointment, as some users who have had negative things to say about the monitor seem to have done. You’ve also got an excellent returns policy to back you up in case you really don’t get on with it or you happen to have other issues with your unit. If you do go for it I also welcome your thoughts.February 14, 2017 at 10:00 pm #41615
Thank you so much for the excellent, well-written reply. I’m looking to build a Ryzen machine, and I may wait to build it when the Vega GPUs come out, in which case FreeSync will be nice. Otherwise, I may just end up with a 1080.
I really liked your review of the ASUS MX34VQ, but the lack of a VESA mount is just a killer for me. Other than that, it looks fantastic!
I’m more of a productivity hog (programmer) than a gamer, but I did want to try a monitor with a higher framerate than 60Hz (other than an old 1080p TN OC’d to 73Hz).
If I get the C34F791, I’ll be sure to report back and answer any questions of yours I can, though, I may not have the experience to be able to give any useful information. 🙂
Thanks again!February 15, 2017 at 4:38 am #41616
So, I saw a Samsung LC27F591 today. It was rather unimpressive. In particular, the color shift that you observed in the Samsung S34E790C and Samsung C27F591FD reviews. I’m hoping that the C34F791 is better. I’m glad to hear that there’s an excellent returns policy, though.February 15, 2017 at 7:37 am #41617
When you saw it, were you standing above it by any chance?February 15, 2017 at 2:00 pm #41618
Hmm – good thinking. It was on a shelf, so technically I was a bit below it. I imagine that would have the same effect.February 26, 2017 at 7:30 pm #41800
Did you make a decision on this?February 27, 2017 at 2:49 am #41803
So far it’s still my #1 choice – I’m open to other options in the meantime, but, I’m just waiting on the right time to purchase this. Thanks for following up.March 3, 2017 at 2:29 pm #41851
We’ll be reviewing this one shortly. 🙂March 8, 2017 at 6:14 pm #41916
Really looking forward to the review, mostly so I can compare the results to others you’ve tested and test in the future. I’ve had the CF791 for 3 days now and am 99% sure I’ll return it.
+ Curvature is nice
+ Colors are nice
+ Contrast shift is there, but doesn’t bother me (does bother me on my S2716DG TN though)
– FreeSync ist only usable between 80-100hz. I assumed the flickering won’t bother me or I could always have more than 48fps, but thats just impossible. It also flickers all the time during loading screens etc if using ultimate mode.
– The responsiveness is quite bad with quite noticeable ghosting and smearing. I can only compare it to a Dell S2716DG or 4k 60hz LG/Dell monitors though, so I’m looking forward to real comparisons to other more similar monitors.
– It seems to have a bug with displaying certain colors next to each other, resulting in artefacts. One example would be a website with a dark header and white body left on the screen and a dark gray background on the right of the screen. That results in a really noticeable “lines” extending from the big contrasts on the left all the way through the gray background on the right. I didn’t experiment much with it, but I assume there are many situations such artefacts can happen, which is a real dealbreaker for me.March 8, 2017 at 6:17 pm #41918
I appreciate the detailed feedback, Sevenes. I too look forward to seeing how responsiveness compares to the other high refresh rate UltraWides we’ve reviewed recently. I do expect some weaknesses, sensitivity to which will vary, but I certainly hope for an improved experience over the likes of the Acer Z35. Out of interest, how often were you running at ~100fps when considering the responsiveness of the monitor? And which ‘Response Time’ setting were you using (maybe you tried all 3?)March 8, 2017 at 6:40 pm #41920
Interesting, Sevenes. I had read about the FreeSync woes on /r/ultrawidemasterrace. As far as I could tell, some games suffer from it, and some don’t, and that it is not GPU dependent. The responsiveness and artifacts are news to me – I’m glad you brought it up.
PCM2, I am certainly waiting until your review before purchasing the monitor at this point. Thankfully, I’m on my own timeframe. An upgrade will happen sometime or another.March 8, 2017 at 7:51 pm #41923
Take my opinion on responsiveness with a grain of salt, as I’m usually gaming on the 144hz TN Dell which is the reference for a reason. It also didn’t bother me too much in games and I might be able to adjust to the responsivenes if the other bugs would be solved.
– Heroes of the Storm scrolling felt a bit “mushy” and ghosting was visible even at constant 100fps.
– The Division at around 80 fps also felt a bit “mushy”, but I didn’t play it much and generally the ultrawide experience made up for it I think
– Overwatch and Paladins simply hate Ultrawides altogether (FoV / 16:9 lock), which bothered me too much to look for ghosting and such there
I’ve done most of the tests on testufo.com, the normal middle setting of Overdrive seemed to do best there, so thats what I used. The highest setting barely reduced smearing/ghosting and just made it lighter, like it sharpened the ghosting (overshoot I assume). Hard to compare a still image from reviews with the moving images there, but it seemed a bit worse than the last few Ultrawides reviewed here.
I also made some photos, while they are pretty bad they show what I mean. It’s at least as bad in reality as it looks on thate photos and the lines do move when I move the window like shadows.
https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/22887672/2017-03-08_19-57-17.png (scanlines and colors from camera)March 8, 2017 at 8:26 pm #41924
Thanks for the followup. Yes, I would certainly expect some weakness compared to snappy 144Hz models like the Dell but it will definitely be interesting to compare this to the other UltraWides. I have actually observed artifacts like that on a few monitors before, although not recently. IIRC the Philips BDM4350UC was the last model I saw something like that on. I think it is a form of ‘inversion artifact’, or at least something caused by imperfect voltage regulation on the monitor when displaying certain content. I’ll look out for it when testing the Samsung as well.March 8, 2017 at 10:23 pm #41925
I also read some rather unfavourable reports about defective pixel / dying pixel after a short time and dust inclusion inside the panel.
Problems with FreeSync, black lines and bleeding can also be found.
That all sounds a bit disappointing with this kind of quality control, especially at this price tag.
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