LG 34UC80-B 34-Inch Curved Monitor Review
The LG 34UC80-B is a 34-inch, curved-screen monitor designed for gamers looking to stay free of artifacts, such as screen tearing and motion blur. This ultra-wide In-Plane Switching (IPS) panel has a decent 75Hz refresh rate and uses AMD’s FreeSync technology to deliver a smooth gaming experience, and offers lots of basic and advanced settings. While it doesn’t match our Editors’ Choice for extra-large-screen gaming monitors, the LG 38UC99-W in terms of features and performance, it costs half as much, making it a recommendable choice for budget gamers.
The 3440 x 1440 screen is housed in a bezel-free black cabinet, with the same splash of black on the back panel. The 18-pound cabinet is supported by a black stand with a telescoping mounting arm that provides 4.3 inches of height and up to 20 degrees of tilt adjustability. The UWQHD panel has a 1900R curvature makes the experience more immersive, and the peak brightness of 300 cm/m2 and a maximum refresh rate of 75Hz offers an even better experience.
The screen has a native 5-millisecond pixel response, but offers a 1-millisecond blur-reduction setting incase you experience ghosting artifacts during fast-paced sequences. Additionally, it provides AMD FreeSync technology, which further eliminates screen-tearing artifacts and boost gaming performance.
Connectivity comes via two HDMI 2.0 ports, a DisplayPort 1.2, a headphones jack and a pair of USB 3.0 ports, all on the back panel. There’s also a USB 3.0 port that supports fast charging for peripherals, but you’ll need to enable it via the OSD. However, it doesn’t support data transfer between the device being charged.
The LG 34UC80-B specs are typical with most of its 34-inch siblings, only that it sheds features like USB Type C and a lower refresh rate in order to achieve a lower price. Still, it puts forward strong out-of-the-box performance. It has a maximum brightness level of 300 cd/m2 which looks much better than LG’s quoted figure and is complemented by a 5M:1 contrast ratio. For gaming, the high contrast ratio is important, as it makes for vibrant pictures, and helps the monitor display a wide array of shades, you can’t easily tell apart even closely matched ones.
Unlike most gaming monitors, the 34UC80-B doesn’t suffer from dead pixels, though there’s a small level of backlight bleeding and IPS glow, but it doesn’t affect the overall gaming experiencing. If your main gaming PC uses an AMD graphics card, you can sync its frame rate with the monitor’s refresh rate. Doing that eliminates screen tearing and stuttering that often occurs within the 48-75Hz FreeSync range when connected through the Displayport connector.
Also, if your machine uses an Nvidia GPU, you can as well use the monitor at 75Hz by simply creating a custom resolution via the variable refresh rate technology. At 75Hz, playability is much smoother and with the Dynamic Action Sync feature enabled, the monitor responds very fast to signals, with the input lag averaging ~10ms.
Gaming performance with the LG 34UC80-B is outstanding on most modern AAA titles. Motion blur in Crysis 3 (PC) and Grand Theft Auto V (Sony PS4) was non-existent, although it gets minor screen tearing in some parts of Crysis 3 gameplay. Enabling FreeSync remedies the tearing issue and gives the game smoother look and feel. The panel’s 11.3-millisecond input lag (the time it takes for the monitor to react to a controller command) is on the lower side, meaning you won’t have to worry about getting blown away while trying to return a round, but is still a bit higher than the ASUS ROG Swift PG348Q’s 9.5 milliseconds.
Considering its size, the 34UC80-B doesn’t draw a lot of power. It consumes 49 watts during gameplay, which is almost the same as the AOC C3583FQ and the Acer X34, both with smaller screens. Other 34-inch monitors like the Dell Ultrasharp U3417W use 57 watts, and the BenQ XR3501 consumes 50 watts.
The 34UC80-B is a typical ultrawide monitor that doesn’t really have any shortcomings. It doesn’t need to compensate for anything as it delivers in every aspect you need it to. If you’re looking for a gaming monitor that upgrades your workspace, while delivering stellar gaming performance, this is among the best you can buy.
Is there a better alternative?
Simply put? Not very easy to find a better alternative at this price point, unless you’re willing to spend more. The 34UC80-B sits comfortably in the top echelons when it comes to price, performance, and image quality. There’s the Acer Predator Z35, if you need a blisteringly fast refresh rate, but you’ll lose out on that rich contrast and high res-screen.
Should you buy it?
Yes, you should. It’s not the most affordable around, but for what you get, the LG 34UC80-B is a good deal. It will outlast your current gaming rig, and if you’re buying for a general use PC, it’ll last even longer.