The BenQ EW3280U monitor has everything for The Last of Us 2: IPS, 4K, HDR, and great audio
Seven years after the release of The Last of Us and following several delays, one of the most anticipated titles in recent gaming history has finally set a firm June 19, 2020 launch date. The Last of Us (TLOU) 2013 was a defining game from developers Naughty Dog, and arguably the most impressive title released on PS3. It was re-released in mid-2014 on PS4 as a remastered edition. Millions of gamers around the world have been waiting for the sequel, The Last of Us Part 2 (TLOU2) for years, waiting to continue the adventures of protagonists Ellie and Joel in a post-apocalyptic world infested with fungal zombies and outlaws.
If you’re in the market for an all-round monitor for gaming and PC usage and have an interest in TLOU2, we have a few hints and tips for you to consider. First off, TLOU2 differs greatly from previous major 2020 release Doom Eternal in that there’s really only one kind of monitor you should consider. Big, beautiful, and high res. TLOU2 isn’t a reflex game so much as it’s a cinematic experience. There’s action, but it’s very calculated, slower paced, and stealthy. In addition, expect tons of gorgeous landscapes and extended cutscenes, plus non-action segments that involve environmental exploration and puzzles.
All of these factors point to a monitor or display that emphasizes resolution, clarity, brightness, contrast, and colour fidelity over sheer speed and framerate.
TLOU2 on PS4 runs at a capped 30Hz in 1920 x 1080. On PS4 Pro, resolution goes up to a base 2560 x 1440, then gets scaled up to 3840 x 2160, or 4K. PS4 Pro still runs TLOU2 at 30 frames per second. Whenever PS5 comes out, TLOU2 will likely run in non-upscaled 4K in 60Hz on the newer console.
Without overhyping our own hardware, the EW3820U really was made for games like TLOU2. It’s a 32” 4K IPS screen with the perfect pixels per inch ratio, so you’re sure to take in every detail crafted by Naughty Dog without missing anything. If you have a PS4 Pro, upscaled 4K looks essentially the same as native 4K on such a precise 32” display, whereas on large TVs upscaling begins to show in the form of a softer image that many people do notice.
Since the EW3280U is officially DisplayHDR 400 certified by VESA and uses an IPS panel, it works great with the HDR data sent out by the PS4 and PS4 Pro. TLOU2 will make extensive use of HDR, and knowing Naughty Dog you can count on some staggering lighting effects.
But playing as Ellie as she tries to overcome bands of infected freaks and crazed humans may require above average brightness and contrast control. The first TLOU already had significant use of light and dark areas to challenge players by obscuring and revealing details. Playing on a display with poor contrast and brightness may hamper your experience. The EW3280U features BenQ HDRi technology, which automatically adjusts settings to prevent crushed black and overexposed white areas of the screen.
HDRi also regulates the colour gamut of HDR content to correct under and oversaturation, together with the IPS panel ensuring everything from the Wyoming woods to decayed urban areas looks its best. TLOU2’s reliance on visual richness as opposed to twitch action pairs it very nicely with the portrait-like EW3280U. There’s also the matte coating on the EW3280U, which is a lot better for gaming than the gloss you get with TVs. Especially if a gaming session goes on for more than an hour, which with TLOU2 will happen. A lot.
Sound played a very important role in TLOU and we believe it’ll do so once more in TLOU2. Our main character this time, Ellie, has learned to use survival instincts from her mentor Joel, who we played as in TLOU. Survival instincts function like a kind of radar, showing dangers that may not be directly visible. In this mode sound gets muffled a bit, so you need to listen carefully to gauge distance to enemies and the direction they may be headed in. The EW3280U’s digital signal processor (DSP) and true 2.1 audio deliver impactful audio that’ll bring out every nuance from TLOU2. Dual 2W speakers plus a 5W woofer mean you’ll enjoy TLOU2 in sumptuous sonic leisure, including Gustavo Santaolalla’s mesmerizing, acoustic guitar-driven soundtrack. Don’t forget to use the headphone jack if needed – always respect other people!
The EW3820U includes dual HDMI, DisplayPort, and USB-C. If you’re looking to upgrade your so-called gaming station away from the main family TV, then this is the monitor for you. You can easily hook up two consoles, one PC, and even a MacBook to the same monitor. All while getting great 4K HDR performance and superb audio. We’re sure you’ll be impressed, and even if TLOU2 is the first game you play on the EW3280U, it sure won’t be the last of them.
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