For a panel of this type, the first guess would be that a steep price tag is going to be firmly attached to the box. This is far from the case as at little over £300, AOC’s Q2963PM offers up not only a high quality image, but also a large desktop area to work around in with all the connectivity and display options that you will ever need.
When I first got this panel in to have a look at, I didn’t honestly know what to make of it. Considering that it is far from the typical 16:10 and 16:9 aspect ratios that we have been very much used to for a number of years now, having a panel that is super wide and isn’t as tall as I have used up to this point (on a single panel that is), I have to say that I’m pleasantly surprised at how ‘comfortable’ it feels to use. As highlighted on the previous page, the extra width that the AH-IPS has to offer is perfect for the likes of video editing and playing games. When using video editing software such as Adobe Premier, there is far more space to work with for example on the video timeline. Rather than having to zoom out to show a greater length of time is no longer an issue for example and when it comes to playing games, the peripheral vision not only boosts the level of depth that you get to the game, but it can also give you a slight advantage in seeing the enemy a split second sooner. For any gamer this is going to be an advantage by any means.
Looking over the rest of the panel, there is no shortage of input options, with all the major display cables fully supported and the presence of a DisplayPort output also to hand, getting connected is all but a breeze. It would have been nice to see all the inputs located on the bottom of the panel so that cables would flow down the stand more discretely or alternatively have the option of some cable management features to tie and hide cables away more efficiently. Continuing on the topic of display inputs, there are not many panels on the market that give the option to have two input sources active at once. Due to the super wide aspect ratio, the Q2963PM is able to display two different sources side-by-side or display one source on top of another in the PIP (Picture in Picture) mode. This is ideal for using to desktop environments on a single display when using the side-by-side option or for displaying a video source through the PIP mode.
The rest of the panel has a great feel of quality to it and the design is a little different with the extra wide arm on the rear of the screen that takes host to the speakers and all the display connections. The grey colour that the screen has been finished off with is a refreshing change to the matte black that we typically see and the ultra-thin plastic bezel around the screen doesn’t make it feel as though it is too-wide which, when you think about it is something that some people may worry about.
If anything, there are only a couple of items that I’d like to see added to the design and specification of the Q2963PM. The first of these is height adjustment. Even though the panel can be tilted back and forth, it would be nice to have some height adjustment of some sort to hand. The panel does sit a little low on the desk and you can get the feeling that you are looking down on it if you have it placed on a desk that is not that deep or wall mounted. The other item that I would like to see is a USB hub. More and more monitors are coming out with four port USB3.0 hubs on them and with the number of USB devices that we own growing, it would be handy to have one of these mounted on the opposite side of the arm to the DVI and VGA ports.
On the whole I’m not left disappointed with this screen at all. When I first had it out of the box and placed on my desk, I really didn’t know what to make of it. I was expecting that the lack of a 1440 or 1600 pixel high-resolution to be an issue and the I would feel short of space, however it turns out that this is far from the case. Being able to view two windows side by side really does make a difference and if you really wanted to, you could mount two or three of them on some VESA mounts and have them in portrait mode – something that is ideal for content writers as myself. As a a package, this is going to be ideal for anyone that would like to have a dual screen setup on their desk, but is unable to space constraints. For a shade over £300, you won’t be disappointed by what it has to offer.
- Super wide 21:9 aspect ratio
- Wide range of display connections available including MHL-HDMI and DP-out
- Ultra thin bezel
- AH-IPS panel with great colour reproduction
- VESA mountable
- PIP and PBP input modes
- No height adjustment
- USB hub would be a welcome addition
“If you’re in the market for a dual-screen setup, but are restricted by limited desk space that two monitors would take up then a super-wide panel may be just your savior. AOC’s 29″ UWHD AH-IPS monitor not only gives a supreme quality image, but it also has all the connectivity options on hand that you may ever need. You’ll only realise how much of a difference it makes once you give it a try”
Thanks to AOC for providing us with this review sample.