AOC Q29630 29" UltraWide IPS LED Monitor Review

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Ask any person who owns a dual-monitor setup and they'll all tell you they couldn't fathom going back to a single display. Maybe you're one of those people, and if so, you know exactly the feeling we're talking about. But what if you could enjoy all the benefits of a dual-monitor configuration from a single monitor? Would you be game to reclaiming some desk space by trading in two panels for a single display?

AOC aims to answer that question with its new 29-inch Q2963PM display. Armed with an UltraWide In-Plane Switching (IPS) panel, this LED-backlit monitor boasts a 2560x1080 resolution with 21:9 aspect ratio, providing viewers with an extra long panoramic view. It's a cinematic screen, and with features like picture-in-picture (PIP) and picture-by-picture (PBP) built-in, workcaholics can multitask the night away from multiple video sources with plenty of horizontal real estate to play with.

AOC Q2963PM - a 29-inch display
AOC Q2963PM - a 29-inch display for productivity chores and movie buffs

The funky aspect ratio limits the appeal of the Q2963PM to gamers, though if developers were to jump on board, a 21:9 monitor could offer a new level of immersion. For now, however, power users and multitaskers are the true beneficiaries. It's true that some of the same benefits can be found on 30-inch monitors rocking 2560x1600 panels, but most will run you at least twice as much as AOC's 29-inch display, which retails for $500 MSRP (around $400 street). They're also quite a bit bigger, which we'll get to later on in this review. For now, let's digest the system specs and see where this panel falls in the grand scheme of things.

AOC 29-inch Q2963M UltraWide IPS LED Monitor
Specifications & Features
Display Size
29" UltraWide
Resolution
2560 x 1080
Aspect Ratio     
21:9
Brightness
300 cd/m2 
Contrast Ratio 
50,000,000:1
Response Time
6ms
Viewing Angle
178° vertical / 178° horizontal
Display Type
IPS (In-Plane Switching)
Connectors
VGA; DVI-D with HDCP; HDMI (MHL); DisplayPort; PC audio in; Headphone out
Power Consumption 
45W (Typical); <0.5W (Standby)
Speakers
2 x 3W speakers
Stand
Tilt (-5 degrees to +20 degrees)
I/O Ports N/A
Dimensions (with stand)
714 mm x 388 mm x 214 mm (HxWxD) / 28.1 inches x 15.3 inches x 8.4 inches
Weight
6.9 kg / 15.2 lbs
Included Accessories

Power adapter; power cord; VGA cable; HDMI cable; audio cable; media (includes drivers, AOC software, user's manual, and warranty)
Warranty
3 years limited (panel 1 year, parts and labor 3 years)
Price $500 MSRP; $400 street



On paper, this is a feature-rich display with a variety of ports to accommodate a wide range of systems. As we touched on earlier, you can connect multiple systems to the Q2963PM and, if desired, split the screen among two inputs. Going in a completely different direction, you can also use the DisplayPort connection to daisy chain several monitors to your system.

Flexibility is the name of the game here, and at a glance, AOC seems to have all of its ducks in a row. There's even a Mobile High Definition Link (MHL), so if you're stuck working late, you can connect and charge your phone, even as you stream videos from it.
 

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*Drools* Too much want.

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i would just want a few of those

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A $400.00 is not too shabby. I'd love to get one of them.

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Love the fact that it is an IPS panel, definitely want atleast one!!

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I purchased on of these about 6 weeks ago and have been nothing but pleased.

From the matte finish on the screen to the plethora of inputs its almost the perfect monitor.

Gaming is great also, as pretty much all modern games offer resolutions based upon what the video driver tells the game it can run.

And to not have any more letterboxing on movies is fantastic. Bitching about the lack of a rotate feature is simply asinine, there is NO conceivable way anything with such an aspect ratio would be useful in portrait mode and simply isn't something that any real user would have a use for.

A USB hub would have been nice, but its really no great loss, and unless EVERY other screen had this there is no way this should be considered a negative.

Given the connectivity options, a remote would have been a great addition like my 2 Asus 27" panels do.

And as for the speakers, they should have been dropped from the design from the start.

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Asinine, eh? Don't tell that to NEC -- the company's 29-inch EA294WMi UltraWide (2560x1080) display rotates into portrait mode just fine. So does the Philips 298P4QJEB, another UltraWide display with a 2560x1080 resolution.

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Whoop dee doo. What is the point of the rotation other than to add another check on the spec list? Its simply a stupid feature on this ratio of screen. You'd be far better off with a 32" display (no rotation required) or to just grow up.

Also remember, that these other screens cost close to twice the amount for pretty much no differences that are worthwhile.

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There are quite a few scenarios where portrait mode could come in handy. To name just a few: photography, specialized gaming (pinball, as has been pointed out by another reader), certain CAD work, reading through long documents (productivity), and programming/debugging all immediately come to mind. One could even argue the benefits of investing in multiple monitors (as AOC is quick to promote), in portrait mode, if it was supported.

I understand you don't personally have a need for the feature, and that's great, because as pointed out in the review, there's a lot to like about the display. However, it's just plain wrong to discredit the feature altogether in a professional panel.

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I would love to play Visual Pinball full screen on this, too bad it doesn't rotate. Sorry to be so asinine about it!

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I want this for gaming but this would cost too much!

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