When you’re buying a monitor, you have an incredible plethora of options to choose from. While many of us are familiar with multiple displays on the desk, one modern display solution is to have a single, ultrawide monitor that provides similar pixels, without the 2 bezels landing right in your eye line.
Aftershock are a company who started in Singapore, but are now in Thailand, Malaysia and Australia. The company has made a name for themselves as creators of custom PC and gaming experiences and we took a look at their 34″ Ultrawide monitor, the Aftershock PRISM X340
Size does matter
The ultrawide 21:9 aspect ratio is delivered in a smooth curve with the top 3 edges of the display’s front wrapped in a moderate black bezel, while the bottom bezel is a little larger, but is presented in a clean silver finish, matching nicely with the stand, offered in a complimentary metallic finish. The rear of the display looks great in a clean white back, only interrupted by the VESA stand mount, rear vents and 2 removable panels to access the connectors.
The display is curved at the ergonomic 1800R, perfect for viewing distances up to 1.8 meters, it wraps your vision perfectly, surrounding and immersing you in the content. The screen is wide enough to provide loads of screen real estate, without maintaining a glanceability that doesn’t require you to move your head like a tennis match.
We know details are important in your monitor purchase, so here’s the dimensions and weight of the display.
|Height with Stand||445 mm|
|Width with Stand||815 mm|
|Depth with Stand||250 mm|
|Weight (Approximate)||6.8 kg|
|Weight with stand (Approximate)||8.0 kg|
Forget the price, what will it do for you?
The display is built for gamers and if you’re after a display that has 100Hz+ refresh rates, then you’re in the right place. The 3440×1440 resolution runs at 100Hz, but if you want to prioritise refresh rates for the smoothest gaming experience, then you’ll need to bump it down to 2560 x 1080. While the faster refresh rate does give a noticeably smoother touch to the gameplay, I don’t think it’s enough to justify the constant resolution switching, so I found myself leaving it at the native res and playing at 100Hz.
For most of us, gaming is only part of why we have a PC, we also use it to be productive and I can’t speak highly enough of a ultrawide display for that. If you’re running Windows 10, you’ll get the ability to snap applications side by side, this enables you to have a similar experience to dual-displays if you’re upgrading, that transition will be a smooth one. Alternatively, you can drag applications into the 4 corners of the display, however this is where the default Windows snaps end.
With a monitor so wide, I find myself often wanting 3 applications snapped side-by-side, Gmail, WordPress and YouTube for example. To achieve this, you’ll need to look at 3rd party window management solutions, they are out there, but I do wish display manufacturers offered a simple solution to this, seem Microsoft apparently won’t.
If you’re in the Nvidia camp and after a monitor that has Gsync, this isn’t it, the same goes for AMD’s Freesync. At this price those features are really expected and if you’ve never used a monitor with it, chances are you won’t miss it. I never really noticed an issue with image tearing, likely a result of the fast refresh rate. Of course some games support V-sync, but this can have a severe reduction in frame rates.
Room for improvement
The included stand with this display isn’t height adjustable. This will make the initial setup for some users a little awkward, as they may not be able to have it positioned at the correct height. Ergonomically this is always a combination of chair, desk and monitor height, but the good news is a 100 x 100 VESA mount on the back means alternate monitor mounts are possible. Also be careful with the monitor arm or mount you select to work with this display, I noticed a couple of mine had metal or plastic surrounds that were too large for the cutout in the back of this monitor.
Connecting to a display with a modern laptop means you’ll likely want to use a USB-C cable. Type-C unfortunately isn’t available here, so it’s not available to charge your gadgets like GoPros, Mobile Phones etc.
PRICE & AVAILABILITY
How much and when can you get one ?
The Aftershock X340 ultrawide monitor regularly retails at an affordable A$799.00 but right now they’re having a sale, so it can be your for just A$599.00. For a 3440 x 1440 monitor with 100hz refresh rate, that’s a stellar price.
You can get it now directly through Aftershock’s website.
If you’ve had eyes on an ultrawide for a while, but have been unable to justify the $1,000+ price tag, then this monitor from Aftershock offers great value for money. There’s no flashy LEDs that project logos on the wall behind your display, but I’d prefer a monitor that focuses on performance and value over superfluous design flairs.
Sure I would have loved to see USB-C included to simplify connections into the future, or just charge my phone, but that’s something I’m willing to forgo for the cheaper price. The lack of an adjustable stand may be an issue for some, but that inclusion of a common VESA mount means it’s easy to bolt on, or wall-mount another stand.
What Aftershock have produced here is a fantastic monitor for productivity and a great monitor for gaming. Given most of us do a blend of both, you want a monitor that performs whatever task you throw at it.
The back of the display is so clean that it’d be perfectly positioned in an open plan office, should you be able to convince the boss to upgrade your old dual-screens with the way of the future, a single ultrawide display.
All things considered, what’s on offer here for the price is pretty amazing. A 34″ monitor with this resolution and refresh rate, can easily cost you double at a different manufacturer. Make sure you check out Aftershock before making your next monitor purchase.