Celebrating 15 years of presence on the market this December, BenQ seems to have decided to celebrate the date with a new gift to imaging professionals: the availability of the 31.5 inch 4K UHD Adobe RGB Color Management Photographer Monitor SW320. This display offers, as the company says, “class-leading colour performance and High Dynamic Range (HDR) capability”. Spanning, adds BenQ, “a wide colour gamut covering 99% of Adobe RGB and 100% of sRGB, Rec. 709, and the digital cinema industry’s DCI-P3 colour space, SW320’s true 10-bit IPS panel and advanced 14-bit 3D lookup table (LUT) deliver spectacular colour quality with precise ≤2 Delta E values.”
“SW320 represents the pinnacle of BenQ colour-critical display technology,” said Conway Lee, President of BenQ Corporation. “This wide colour gamut HDR monitor takes professional imaging to new heights, fulfilling the demanding and exacting requirements of photography enthusiasts.”
In fact, the new monitor seems ready to face the future. Augmenting its impressive 31.5-inch IPS panel with 4K UHD 3840 x 2160 resolution and 178˚ H/V viewing angles, SW320 features the following state-of-the-art colour technologies:
- 99% Adobe RGB Colour Gamut and Technicolor Colour Certification. SW320 delivers an ultra-wide colour gamut to reach 99% of Adobe RGB, a significantly larger colour space than sRGB and Rec. 709. Also supporting DCI-P3 as well as 100% of sRGB and Rec. 709, SW320 is certified by Technicolor to meet strict standards for colour accuracy used in Hollywood and throughout the media and entertainment industries, with consistent, precise colour exactly as content originators intended.
- High Dynamic Range (HDR) content support. Increasing the dynamic range between black and white for naturally realistic images, SW320 supports HDR signals through both its HDMI and DisplayPort inputs.
- True 10-Bit Colour Depth, 14-Bit 3D LUT, ΔE ≤ 2. Producing over a billion colours for ultra-smooth gradations, SW320’s 14-bit colour lookup table guarantees absolute colour accuracy as defined by Comission Internationale de l’Eclairge’s (CIE) Delta E deviation of less than 2, designating the finest colour fidelity exceeding the limits of human vision.
- Palette Master Element Colour Calibration. SW320 can be hardware calibrated with a colourimeter and Palette Master Element calibration software for professional work.
- Brightness Uniformity Function. For an authentic and consistent viewing experience, SW320 achieves immaculate brightness uniformity across the entire screen via a meticulous fine-tuning process of hundreds of sub-regions with high-precision apparatus.
- GamutDuo and Advanced Black and White Modes. GamutDuo Mode allows simultaneous side-by-side display of content in two different colour spaces, such as Adobe RGB and sRGB. Photos can also be viewed in a black and white film effect, with three presets for photo previews prior to post-processing adjustments.
- Hotkey Puck and Pro Shading Hood. The unique “Hotkey Puck” remote control enables instant switching between colour modes and image settings, and the included detachable shading hood works in both portrait and landscape orientations to block ambient light and glare for superb colour accuracy.
The Hotkey Puck is really a unique way to enhance productivity, as it allows the user to switch between Adobe RGB mode, sRGB mode and Black & White mode effortlessly. The buttons can also be customized to map other modes or OSD settings, such as brightness and contrast to bring added convenience to photographers.
Finished in a minimalist bezel and adjustable stand design engineered to reduce reflection, SW320 provides comprehensive connectivity, including a media card reader, USB 3.0 ports, HDMI 2.0a, and DisplayPort / miniDisplayPort 1.4 supporting Mac Thunderbolt output.
The monitor was shown at the last Photokina, in Cologne, Germany, and in the United States during the PhotoPlus Expo 2016, Oct. 20-22 at the Javits Convention Center in New York, along with other models from BenQ. Price and availability in the United States are not yet known (January 2017, probably, according to some sources), but Amazon’s UK website has the monitor listed with a price of £1,250.00, while Amazon Spain shows a value of € 1.517,80. If that translates in a price around $1500 in the United States, it’s good value for a monitor with these specifications.