Asus MX34VQ Ultrawide Monitor Review – Awesome 100Hz Gaming But Not Without Its Flaws

A premium design, gorgeous ultrawide resolution, super smooth 100Hz, and FreeSync supported all at $799 USD seems like a great deal But the terrible stand, lack of VESA mounting , some minor freesync flickering, and pixel inversion issues, keep it far from perfect

Hi I’m David and this is the ASUS MX34VQ Monitor So on paper there’s a lot to like to like about this monitor With a 34 inch diagonal running at 3440×1440 that’s about 110 pixel per an inch which I find just about perfect for productivity and web browsing without any need for scaling The panel also has a native 100 hertz refresh rate with FreeSync support between 48 and 100Hz which makes it great for smooth and response game play experiences but I’ll touch on that more later This monitor is using Samsung VA panel and comes with typical benefits and disadvantages over an IPS or TN panel

(Color settings on both monitors, not a perfect comparison, different curve, color calibration) But quickly comparing to my Dell ultrawide that uses an IPS panel, I find colors pretty comparable between the two Viewing angles on the ASUS monitor are definitely not as good as the colors quickly shift as you move off angle The blacks on the ASUS are really nice and dark and have very little glow or light bleed but it does tend to crush some of the blacks so to you do loose some shadow detail And finally reading text or webpages on both monitors is nice but looks just a little smoother on the Dell IPS panel The physical design of the monitor looks really classy and premium

It has a near frameless design on the top and sides with very small bezels and uses a silver and black plastic frame throughout the construction The display has an 1800R curved radius which is nice for wrapping around your vision and has a light matte finish on the screen that’s good with glare and clarity The base of the stand has a built in Qi charger which is nice if you have devices with wireless charging support One of the biggest flaws with this monitor is the stand It only supports the tilting adjustment, it stands very short at about 46cm from the base to the top of the monitor

Also there are no VESA mounting holes so you can’t easily swap out for a new stand, so most people will need to put this on a lift to get proper ergonomics The monitor is powered by an external power brick so there is extra cable management to consider and for display input connectors there are 3 HDMI 20 connectors and just one DisplayPort connector that I’m using for all my testing Another nice feature with this monitor are the Harman Kardon built in speakers And these are probably one of the best speakers I’ve heard on a monitor and are very usable but they don’t have enough clarity to completely replace a decent set of dedicated speakers

By default they have an auto sleep function that kicks in after 2 seconds of no sound and takes about half a second to auto turn back on which gets annoying between song tracks so I recommend turning that feature off Also if you’re in a quiet environment and sensitive to buzzing or electric whine noises, like I am, the speakers emit a faint buzzing noise, so just turn off the speakers completely if that bothers you Controls and the OSD for the monitor are simple and easy to use with a power button, joystick and shortcut button under the display Most of the options are pretty standard so I’ll just walk through them on screen, but a nice feature this monitor has is the GamePlus FPS counter that doesn’t show traditional FPS like FRAPS does but instead shows the monitors current refresh rate that’s useful for checking if FreeSync is working So next let’s talk gaming on this monitor and that’s the big appeal for this ASUS model over something like my existing Dell Ultrawide

With a native 100Hz refresh rate, game play feels really smooth and highly responsive I find high refresh rate monitors like this ASUS are definitely worth the premium if gaming is a main purpose for the monitor And the mix between high refresh rate and high ultrawide resolution means it looks and feels great whether you play a fast pace twitch shooter or a slow paced RPG (I don’t go into measuring input lag (pretty good), pixel responsiveness (good), or VA ghosting (it’s there) but nothing takes away from the experience) This monitor also supports FreeSync with a range of 48-100Hz which also really helps with the smoothness and tear free experience while gaming But there is some flickering on screen once you hit the 50 fps range as the FreeSync LFR feature starts kicking in and the display irregularly switches between 50 Hz and 100Hz, but this is a pretty normal artifact due to brightness differences between low and high refresh rates on these monitors

In these cases where my R9 390X gpu is unable to keep up I feel it’s worth dropping my resolution down to get a higher FPS for a better gaming experience and completely avoid this flickering Oddly this display doesn’t natively have built in support for these intermediate resolutions but can be easily added through a custom resolution utility or in the AMD driver (unable to get higher hz) Overall gaming on this monitor feels great, the FreeSync flickering can be annoying as it also pops up in some menus and cut scenes but even if turn FreeSync off I enjoy the benefits of the higher refresh rate so I’ll continue to appreciate this monitor even if I ever get a Nvidia GPU The last thing I want to cover are some pixel inversion issues with this monitor Most people won’t really notice this issue during typical usage but when you have fine checkerboard pattern on screen you can start seeing some artifacts some of which can cause minor grain patterns and brightness changes, to full blown bleeding across the entire screen

Again for the vast majority of people you’ll probably rarely encounter this problem but apparently it pops up on most high refresh rate monitors So it’s good to be aware of it if it occurs So that’s the ASUS MX34VQ monitor The ultrawide resolution combined with the high 100Hz refresh rate and FreeSync all work together to create one of the best gaming experiences without a huge price premium Sure, there are flaws with this monitor but if you can overlook them you’ll be left with a gaming experience that you can never go back from