The Alienware Gaming Monitor is probably the most stunning gaming displays around, nevertheless, you pay a higher premium for the fancy looks.
Slick, premium design
Excellent brightness and color
Useful port layout
Very costly for 1080p
No built-in speakers
Lackluster lighting effects
PC maker Alienware has officially entered the gaming accessories arena, and if we’re judging solely on style, the business has made quite an entrance.
The Alienware AW2518H Gaming Monitor ($599) retains the signature design of Alienware’s slick desktops and laptops, with sharp edges, silver panels and even the same LED backlights. However, while Alienware’s debut display looks beautiful and performs better still in-game, its high price tag will be a lot to swallow for 1080p gaming.
Design and Lighting
Most gaming monitors aren’t designed to be the centerpiece of your setup, but again, most gaming monitors aren’t created by Alienware. This display looks strikingly premium, with a practically bezel-free screen and the same silver, LED-backlit rear panel that you will find on the business’s laptops and desktops.
Much like other Alienware products, you can set the monitor’s three LED strips to glow an individual color, or cycle through the complete rainbow. It isn’t incredibly practical – you will not see your lit-up rear panel while gaming – but in the event that you insist on having your personal computer, display, keyboard and mouse all glow the same color, you can create that happen. I’d have desired the Alienware Gaming Monitor to have bottom-facing lights that illuminate your accessories, just like the types entirely on Acer’s Predator X34.
The Alienware’s LED lighting may not be all that useful, however the display’s ergonomics undoubtedly are. You can boost or lower the display about 5 inches up or down, swivel it roughly 45 degrees laterally, as well as pivot it 90 degrees into portrait mode to use as a second monitor for carrying out work or monitoring Twitch chat. The whole lot rests on an attractively slim base.
Ports and Interface
Alienware’s monitor covers your entire basic connection needs, with HDMI and DisplayPort 1.2 allowing you to connect to your personal computer and three USB 3.0 ports in the trunk. If you want what to look extra seamless, there’s an included panel that enables you to cover up the trunk.
What I appreciate a lot more, however, will be the two additional USB 3.0 ports and the headphone jack sitting right in the bottom edge. This implies you can plug your peripherals in without needing to reach in to the back of the display.
The Alienware Gaming Monitor’s on-screen interface is easy and fairly intuitive, largely because of the six physical navigation keys put in the bottom edge. While I’d have prefered a navigation nub just like the kinds featured on Asus’ displays, I was still in a position to adapt brightness and switch among display modes with simply a few easy button taps.
The Alienware Gaming Monitor made a fantastic companion to almost anything I played onto it, providing the rich colors and low latency I’ve come to anticipate from a Dell gaming display.
Few genres need a responsive display up to fighting games do, and I’m pleased to report that Alienware’s monitor handled Tekken 7 wonderful. The Alienware Gaming Monitor allowed me to execute complex combos with out a hint of input lag and added some serious pop to the bright orange volcano fires that surrounded me during battle.
Alienware’s display was just as reliable for Heroes of the Storm, a multiplayer online battle-arena game where scanning the battlefield and reacting quickly is key. I never felt any delay as I furiously clicked my mouse to go my hero around the arena, and the monitor’s RTS mode, which saturates the colors, managed to get extra simple to distinguish between my associates and the enemy.
When I switched gears to the more cinematic action of Rise of the Tomb Raider, the monitor allowed me to see every brutal detail of Lara Croft’s battle-weathered face. Tomb Raider was a particularly good fit for the display’s extra-rich RPG mode, which made the game’s sunny skies and sandy canyons look especially bright and beautiful.
The Alienware Gaming Monitor features Nvidia’s G-Sync technology, which syncs up your display together with your graphics card to eradicate screen tears. G-Sync helped Tomb Raider perform extra smoothly as I jumped from cliff to cliff, though I didn’t notice a significant performance dip when I turned the feature off, and that is as a result of muscle within our GTX 1070-powered rig.
Brightness and Color
The Alienware Gaming Monitor became just as impressive inside our lab tests since it was during everyday gaming. The display exhibited the average brightness of 370 nits, topping the Dell 24 Gaming Monitor (284), the Asus’ VG245H (252.6) and our 255-nit monitor average.
Alienware’s monitor crushed our color tests, submiting a Delta E color-accuracy rating of 0.26 (nearer to 0 is way better) while reproducing 119 percent of the sRGB color gamut. Which makes this display more accurate than both Dell (1.88) and Asus (1.96) screens, and will be offering roughly the same gamut percentage as both monitors.
Despite its speedy real-world performance, the Alienware Gaming Monitor registered a reasonably high latency of 16 milliseconds on our lag tester. That’s somewhat greater than our 13.6 average.
Modes and Extras
Fancy lighting aside, the Alienware Gaming Monitor includes the normal smattering of features you’d expect from a gaming display. There are always a slew of display presets for genres, such as for example shooting, role playing and strategy; a comfort view mode for reduced eye strain; and three “game” presets you could customize to your heart’s content.
Alienware’s monitor can display your PC’s frame rate atop the screen, and give a timer overlay for folks playing strategy games. The only common overlay feature missing out of this monitor is a crosshair option for shooting games, but I’ve never discovered that essential.
The Alienware Gaming Monitor ($599) is among the most beautiful 1080p displays I’ve ever used. It is also just about the most expensive. You get all the bells and whistles of all Alienware machines – including a slick design, LED backlighting and G-Sync support – and also a remarkably fast, 240-Hz refresh rate and stunning colors. But you’re still paying an exorbitant price for 1080p.