BenQ PD3220U review: A fine and flexible screen

Print designers steer clear, but a classy IPS panel makes this a fine choice for others

Price
£1,000 exc VAT
  • Clever Hotkey Puck accessory
  • Excellent uniformity and colour accuracy
  • Lovely design
  • Poor Adobe RGB coverage

It isn’t enough for manufacturers to lure creative pros with the promise of calibrated panels that have a Delta E under two anymore – that’s rapidly becoming the standard for mid-range screens. Instead, the likes of BenQ must entice people with features beyond “normal” monitors.

BenQ hopes that its Hotkey Puck G2 will do exactly that. This connects to a port at the rear and provides a handy dial for controlling settings such as brightness. Shortcut buttons allow you to quickly switch between colour profiles and sources too. It’s a nice time-saving touch that means you don’t need to dive into the more laborious OSD, which is simple to navigate using the joystick on the rear of the screen but no match for Eizo’s when it comes to fine-tuning options. 

That reflects the flexibility of the panel too. While you can choose the sRGB and DCI-P3 colour profiles with confidence – the BenQ returned scores of 96% coverage/96.6% volume in sRGB and 94.5%/94.5% in DCI-P3 – when we chose its Adobe RGB mode it only covered 81.2% of that gamut. That’s not good enough for print designers. In terms of colour accuracy, however, we can’t fault this monitor: an average of 0.44 in sRGB, with a maximum of 1.58, is right up there with the best. And when it comes to brightness uniformity, this panel was the best by far, with a stunning average of 1.4% across the panel. 

One thing the figures don’t show is that a 31.5in diagonal is a stretch for even IPS technology when it comes to viewing angles, so you’ll need to look “head on” when checking colours. 

That aside, this is a lovely panel to use on a desk. The construction is top quality, as clearly shown by a smooth sliding mechanism that takes the panel through its 150mm of height adjustment. There’s also support for pivoting and a respectable 60° of swivel. Finally, note the option to power a laptop through the USB-C port. Three USB-A ports are tucked away at the rear, with one more – along with a second USB-C port and headphones jack – sitting on the right-hand side.

This is a fine and flexible screen, then, but before you buy you should consider the cheaper Dell U3219Q.

BenQ PD3220U specifications

Screen size

31.5in

Screen resolution

3,840 x 2,160

Screen technology

IPS

Screen refresh rate

60Hz

Video inputs

1x DisplayPort 1.4, 2x HDMI 2.0, 2x USB Type-C

Audio inputs/outputs

3.5mm headphone jack

Speakers

2x 2W

Ports

3x USB 3, USB-B, 2x USB Type-C (85W/15W)

Adjustability

150mm height adjustment, -5°/+20° tilt, 60° pivot, portrait mode

Dimensions

715 x 186 x 478-628mm

Weight

10.4kg

Warranty

3yr

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