Samsung has announced three new curved displays, with sizes ranging from 23.6 to 31.5 inches, but hefty price tags and 1080p resolutions are the real stunner here.
The $599.99 31.5-inch SE590C, the $399.99 27-inch SE591C, and the $299 23.6-inch SE510C will all be available this May. There's no word on international availability yet, but that works out to £404 or AU$789 for the 31-inch, £270 or AU$525 for the 27-inch, and £202 or AU$394 for the 23.6-inch.
Samsung claims that the curve in their new displays will ease eye strain but reducing our need to shift focus when looking over at the edges of our screens. This is far from Samsung's first foray into the world of curved displays. Last year we saw the 27-inch Samsung S27D590CS , a monitor with meager specs and a $430 price. And then there are larger displays like the Samsung UNHU9000 : it's a fine TV, but the curved screen felt gratuitous, adding little more to the viewing experience than a heftier price. On paper, these new monitors are teetering in the same direction.
We'll start with the biggest and priciest of the bunch, the 31.5-inch SE590C. The 16:9 aspect ratio will be a good fit for movie-buffs, and the 4-millisecond response time should placate all but the pickiest gamers. There are a pair of 5W speakers, though both of the aforementioned camps will probably replace these with a solid pair of headphones or a more robust audio solution. The 350-nit vertically-aligned panel also offers a 5,000:1 contrast ratio, and Samsung is promising deep blacks and vivid colors, too. But then we get to the resolution: 1,920 by 1,080 pixels, on a 31.5-inch panel.
While full HD, that's a jarringly low resolution for a screen this big. A quick trip to Amazon turned up the Samsung S32D850T, a 32-inch display that also costs $599.99, but offers a far more sensible 2,560 by 1,440 pixel resolution. That display lacks a nifty curve, but I'd wager that the dramatically higher resolution will more that make up for the missing novelty.
The SE591C and SE510C are smaller and a bit cheaper, but similarly equipped. The SE591C has a 27-inch panel, loses an HDMI port, gains an input jack, keeps the pair of speakers and tones the contrast ratio down to 3,000:1. The SE510 is available in 27- and 23.6-inch variants, dials the brightness down to 250-nits, and loses the speakers.
I will of course reserve judgment until I have a chance to see these curved displays firsthand. But a conventional screen will offer substantially higher-resolutions for the same price, which I suspect will be far more important to many.
Check out the chart below for the rest of the monitors' specs, courtesy of Samsung.
|Series||SE510C Series||SE590C Series||SE591C Series|
|Speaker||-||-||5W x 2||5W x 2|