The panel does not make the monitor. As I saw in my last 21:9 monitor review, even if you have the exact same panel in two displays, a whole lot more makes the display good or bad. One might assume that all the 21:9 displays now hitting the market are likely to be similar, or even the same, since they all use the same panel, but they would be greatly mistaken as that is but a small part of the overall display. Because of this I was looking forward to seeing what ASUS could manage to do with a high quality panel at its disposal for their MX299Q monitor.

While 21:9 aspect ratios were initially designed around movies in the scope format (2.39:1 and other similar aspect ratios), they also offer a unique experience for gaming. The wider aspect enables a wider field-of-view in many games and can offer an advantage. Personally, however, for general productivity work like Word and Excel I find a 2560x1440 display to be more useful as those benefit from the vertical space.

Out of the box the MX299Q has a stylish look to it. Vendors are trying to make a splash with their 21:9 panels and the styling on them has been nice so far. ASUS puts a thin silver bezel at the bottom of the display while the rest of the screen is effectively bezel-free. I’d like to see this bezel-free look come to more displays in the future. The inputs, DisplayPort, DVI, and HDMI/MHL, are located on the rear along with a headphone jack and audio line-in. Power is handled by an external power brick to accomplish the thin look.

One quirk that I have with the MX299Q is the OSD. Even after I tell it to be in the lower-left corner, it always defaults back to the upper-left. If I adjust it again it moves back, but then it resets. ASUS tested this for me and it appears the early firmware on mine is the culprit as it has been fixed. The OSD has a normal amount of control available with multiple color settings, a user white point, and a pair of gamma presets. Controls are small buttons on the bottom of the panel that I find easy to confuse for each other. The small size and tight spacing make adjustments harder than they need to be, but they do get the job done.

Another feature ASUS has integrated is their Smart Grid overlay. If you are working on a document and want to see how it fits into a pre-defined area, such as 4x6, you can do that. An overlay will appear on the screen and you can position it over what you are working on. Perhaps a graphics designer might find it more useful than I do as a writer and reviewer. Finally there are a pair of speakers that utilize B&Os ICEpower Class D modules.

Video Inputs DVI-DL, DisplayPort, HDMI/MHL
Panel Type AH-IPS
Pixel Pitch 0.2628 mm
Colors 16.7 Million
Brightness 300 md/m^2
Contrast Ratio 80,000,000:1 Dynamic
Response Time 5ms GTG
Viewable Size 29"
Resolution 2560x1080
Viewing Angle (H/V) 178/178
Backlight LED
Power Consumption (operation) < 31.7W
Power Consumption (standby) < 0.5W
Screen Treatment Anti-Glare
Height-Adjustable No
Tilt Yes, -5 - +20
Pivot No
Swivel No
VESA Wall Mounting No
Dimensions w/ Base (WxHxD) 27.6" x 15.4" x 8.5"
Weight 12.1 lbs.
Additional Features 2 x 3W speakers
Limited Warranty 1 Year
Accessories DVI-DL Cable, AC Power Cable, Power Adapter, 3.5mm Audio Cable, HDMI Cable, MHL Cable
Price $550

I utilized the DVI input for all of my testing other than lag.

Brightness and Contrast
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  • coolhardware - Monday, September 23, 2013 - link

    For the past few years I have been using a Dell 30" 2560x1600 in landscape, sandwiched by two Dell 20" 1600x1200 displays in portrait mode.
    With the two side monitors rotated, all three monitors end up being the same height and pixel density... :-)
    (sorry the post is somewhat confusing, it was quickly put together when I was planning and initially installing... I really should update it!)
  • compcons - Monday, September 23, 2013 - link

    I have a 27x9H which is a similar style to this one. There are NO VESA mounts and the stand mounts similar to most LCD TVs. One option is all that is available. Confirm that you can rotate it if necessary. Personally, I mounted my old gateway 22" on a monoprice desk mount and rotate it vertically when I need it.
  • Nagorak - Tuesday, September 24, 2013 - link

    Sounds to me like you're just going to end up with a crick in your neck.
  • sjpxk992013 - Wednesday, October 2, 2013 - link

    I have the Dell U2913 in portrait mode attached to a Thinkpad W520 with another Dell 24" as the landscape 1080p panel. With the laptop LCD running Metro in the center stack the two choices make working super easy.

    Road and Track for instance looks perfect in p-mode where my banking sites look better in standard l-mode
  • ComputerGuy2006 - Monday, September 23, 2013 - link

    Although its nice not to be stuck in the old 1080p monitors, id like to see something with more sensible resolutions. Something between 1600p and 4k would be nice, or even 4k 60hz at decent prices....
  • Kevin G - Monday, September 23, 2013 - link

    3200 x 1800 resolution exists as it is found on some 15" notebooks. I wouldn't mind such a resolution on a 24" desktop display.

    There is also 3280 x 2048 resolution displays used for medical imaging but they're prohibitory expensive. 4K displays like the Asus PQ321Q are actually cheaper.
  • blanarahul - Monday, September 23, 2013 - link

    Really, really awesome review. I especially loved the "Contrast Uniformity" chart. I hope others would do it too.
  • althaz - Monday, September 23, 2013 - link

    8,000 cd/m^2 is REALLY bright - it's about half a percent (0.5%) of the brightness of the sun. Half a percent might not seem like much, but we're talking about the sun, which is REALLY bright.
  • DanNeely - Monday, September 23, 2013 - link

    Assuming your comparison is using cd/m^2 for both and are measuring the sun as seen from the Earth; at any reasonable viewing distance that monitor would have a higher total luminosity than the sun.

    Geek tanning both anyone?
  • piroroadkill - Monday, September 23, 2013 - link

    Wow, a monitor that wide is incredibly ugly.

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