Dell UltraSharp U3014 30” Monitor Review

Author: AkG
Date: September 13, 2013
Product Name: UltraSharp U3014
Part Number: U3014
Warranty: 3 Years
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Over the past year Dell has released numerous upgrades to their UltraSharp line and for the most part these new models have been excellent refreshes. However, it seems Dell have left the best for last as the all new Dell UltraSharp U3014 represents the epitome of what a mega-sized, professional business class monitor should be. No matter if you are a Graphics Artist, an SQL Database administrator, Professional PC gamer or anything in-between, the more screen real-estate you have the more effective and efficient you can be at your job. Simply put, for a wide variety of business professionals and PC enthusiast’s alike size does matter; however it is not just sheer inches that matter but the performance backstopping it.

Sometimes though even large the largest 27-inch 2560x1440 AH-IPS monitors is not big enough and only the largest, highest resolution, highest color gamut monitor available will be ‘good enough’. While ‘4K’ monitors are indeed slowly working their way on to the market very few home users or business professionals can justify their budget busting asking price. In a perfect world, a utopia free of mundane worries like ‘budgets’, nobody would worry about such petty things like making a profit or even eating. Back here in the real world, increased efficiency has to be balanced off by the increased cost. While yes 4K resolution could increase work flow, their asking price give accountants panic attacks at the mere mention of their name. This large gap between –relatively- reasonably priced 27” models and ‘never happening’ 4K vanity monitors is where Dell’s UltraSharp 30” model is meant to reside.

As with the U2711 the U3011 was sorely in need of a refresh as technology first caught up and surpassed its panel abilities. With such high asking prices their lowering of relative performance in turn lowered the perceived value of the U30 series. When Dell released the U2713H this issue became even more serious and the U3011 was rather hard to justify as opting for the larger ‘flagship’ UltraSharp U3011 meant actually accepting a large down grade in performance. This performance disparity is precisely what the U3014 is meant to resolve and once again make the U30 series the true flagship of the UltraSharp series.

With an average online asking price of about $1,100 – or about $400 premium over the U2713H – the U3014 certainly is not priced for everyone, but on paper you do get a lot for the money. Much like the U2713H, the U3014 has a significant advantage in both color consistency, color range and all round responsiveness over the older U3011 and is the equal of the U2713H in this regards. The new Anti-Glare coating found the U2713 series is simply icing on the cake and cements this new monitor’s status as a true step above the previous generation.

Even with all these things in its favour, and also like the U2713H, the U3014 is not without controversy. While you do get an even larger 10-bit, ultra wide color gamut “PremierColor” AH-IPS monitor with the same Anti-Glare treatment as its smaller brother, you also get the typical price increase for going from 2560x1440 to 2560x1600. In this instance, this 160 pixel row comes with a premium of about four hundred dollars. This is a rather steep increase for the sake of a row of pixels only 160 high, but consumers interested in this class of monitors are not afraid to spend more upfront, if it translates to better value in the long term. Those selfsame characteristics which made the U2713H so impressive are what Dell is counting on to help persuade the buying public that those extra 409,600 pixels are worth the added expense.


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