Carefully located at the bottom of the panel are buttons and a joystick, and these can be used to adjust various settings on the display. Handily, however, BenQ has also included a small remote control, which is a bit unusual for monitors of this type but provides easy access to various presets and is our preferred option for fiddling with menus. If you don’t want to deal with another plastic object on your desk, the aforementioned onboard inputs work well, and have a solid and tactile feel to them.
In terms of ports, you get the obligatory DisplayPort for your PC, as well as two HDMI 2.1 ports for 120fps output, four USB ports, and a 3.5mm headphone jack. Everything is neatly organized and easily accessible, so you shouldn’t have too much of a headache swapping cables if you’re someone who regularly cycles through different tech devices. At this point, it’s worth mentioning that you can adjust DisplayPort and HDMI settings independently, which is convenient if you plan to use this monitor for both PC use and PS5 gaming. Personally, we prefer a medium more subtle image when we’re browsing spreadsheets, and a brighter more vivid image when playing console games, and the EX3210U is able to deliver that.
Picture quality: true color
As we mentioned at the start of this review, picture quality is paramount when it comes to choosing a display, and in our opinion BenQ has delivered on its lofty promises. The IPS panel employed by the EX3210U is rich and bright, thanks to a truly impressive color palette. There are plenty of presets to play with, though personally we found the custom setting to be the best fiddling with the available parameters. The key here is the flexibility enabled by the monitor, and it really does provide a lot of options if you want to experiment – as well as some serviceable “out of the box” configurations if you don’t want to fiddle around.
One thing that should be noted, however, is that in SDR you’re going to experience a peak brightness of around 250 nits on this monitor, which is low compared to other options on the market. While you can force HDR for all content – which ultimately delivers a much brighter image, as you’d expect – it may not always be accurate if it’s not supported by default. Therefore, if you intend to use it in a relatively bright environment, you might find the SDR output looking dull and muddy. It’s definitely worth considering where you’re going to place the monitor and how it will be affected by daylight; We didn’t have too much of a problem with our setup, but the skylights and large windows may eventually hinder visibility, we suspect.
Light bleeding can also be an issue, although your mileage may vary greatly on this front. We did see some bloom and overflow in the corners of the panel, but nothing too aggressive; This can unfortunately fall into a manufacturing monopoly, so if you pick one of these up, you’ll want to check carefully in the dark to see if your unit is affected. While this may be an unfortunate issue, we found the viewing angles on the monitor to be excellent, with its overall clarity at 4K resolution.
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