Our testing laboratory received a large-format office display LG 34CB98-B, which differs not only good ergonomic adjustment functions, but also a curved panel. It will be interesting to evaluate the novelty in the tests.
You get used to luxury very quickly. If you are used to working for a large display in the office, then you hardly want to go back to the model with a smaller diagonal. We are familiar with such feelings after the tests of large-format displays. The reasons for the transition to a display with a larger diagonal can be very different. Gamers need a deeper level of immersion in games, more space for the desktop is more interesting for work. In addition, you can abandon the second display, which reduces power consumption.
All this is exactly what the LG 34CB98-B offers to its customers. LG chose a diagonal of 34 inches, which has a ver decent resolution of 3.440 x 1.440 pixels. A wide format of 21: 9 allows you to almost replace two 24-inch monitors, and in height will be available additional pixels. Unlike the previously tested LG 34UB88-B , the 34CB98-B uses a curved panel. I wonder what advantages it will provide for office use. On the interfaces, the 34-inch monitor also shows itself well, there is support for Thunderbolt 2.
But to pay for LG 34CB98-B will have a lot – about 900 euros in Europe. At a price, the 34-inch monitor does not belong to the budget segment, but there are more expensive business models on the market.
LG 34CB98-B refers to the B2B line of the South Korean manufacturer, so the appearance can be called quite simple. On the other hand, the 34-inch monitor belongs to the LG product at a glance.
LG retained its traditional black design, typical for consumer devices of the South Korean company. If you like monotonous black coloring, then LG 34CB98-B will be to your liking. In any case, we get a pleasant variety compared to white or beige colors typical for the corporate sphere. The monitor will fit well into both office and home environment. Thanks to the narrow frames, a configuration with several displays is possible. But a fairly large diagonal allows the 34CB98-B to replace the configurations with two 23 or 24 “monitors.
The rack also fits into the overall color palette. LG refused to silver color, now the rack is completely black.
A special function of the LG 34CB98-B is a curved panel, which is rare for an office environment. Indeed, about the relevance of the curved panel on the desktop arguing for a long time. Curved displays are very good for games or movies, as they reinforce the immersion. In the case of office applications, you will have to get used to some time, because straight horizontal lines turn into curves.
At the back, we also do not get variety in color. Instead of glossy white, LG has now chosen a matte black color. As a result, the 34-inch monitor looks pretty strict.
The interface panel is not deployed down, but is located directly on the rear panel. Therefore, the cables can not be completely hidden, which will negatively affect the appearance when the monitor is not at the wall. In addition to two HDMI inputs, there is one DisplayPort. A special feature is the built-in Thunderbolt 2 concentrator, which allows the Thunderbolt signal to be transmitted when a 34-inch 34UC98-B monitor is connected in a chain. Of course, through Thunderbolt 2 you can connect the display to the computer. This step will surely please those users who work in the creative field. Of course, the hub of the more recent Thunderbolt 3 standard would not hurt, thanks to which the monitor could be turned into a full-fledged docking station. The interface panel completes the USB hub with two ports for connecting peripherals.
The quality of materials and manufacturing no complaints. All components are neatly docked to each other, without uneven gaps. The quality of the plastic used is quite high, although LG does not approach the same Eizo here.
Ergonomics in the corporate environment plays an important role. Yet behind the monitor should be comfortable to work for many hours. LG supported for 34UC98-B the possibility of adjusting the height of the panel in the range of 11 cm. Of course, there are monitors with a large range on the market, but this level is quite enough. Therefore, even users with high growth will feel comfortable behind the monitor.
There is also the adjustment of the slope of the panel in the range from -5 to 15 °. However, there is no mechanism for turning the panel to the right or to the left. The lack of the function of turning the panel into a portrait mode is easier to explain because of the 34-inch diagonal.
As before, the main and only control element is a mini-joystick, located at the bottom of the panel in the center. It provides navigation in four directions and pressing. LG was able to integrate the joystick without compromising appearance, the company did not have to use the rear buttons or touch elements. Here LG bypasses many competitors.
Of course, good ergonomics implies a convenient menu of the monitor. As usual, LG broke the menu into two levels. At the first level, the user gets quick access to the most important settings. At the second level, there is already a full menu, with a wide range of settings. Users who are professionally working with images will enjoy the adjustment of color rendition across the six axes. There are various profiles available, which we will discuss below.
It is interesting that for the business display LG has provided for numerous game functions, which can be accessed through quick access. Apparently, the OSD and the image processing engine here are used the same as those of other LG models.
Under the name OSC, LG has provided another control option for a 34-inch monitor. Namely, a software utility that allows you to squeeze out of the 34UB88-B even more than the on-screen menu. You can use all the functions of the on-screen menu with the mouse, navigation is convenient and fast. But given the very good on-screen menu, this possibility seems to us redundant.
But the OSC has other functions. For example, you can activate the automatic loading of certain color profiles when running the specified applications. It seems to be a simple function, but in practice it provides additional comfort. Let’s hope that LG in the future will offer more profiles.
You can also set the panel layout to windows, which is very convenient in practice – yet a display with a similar diagonal can easily replace two 24-inch monitors. The basic layout options are specified in the OSC, after which it is enough to move the application window to the desired area, it will be configured automatically. The 34UB88-B can be used as a replacement for two displays in the workplace, so the OSC will allow you to quickly select the desired layout of windows, as before with several displays. All this improves the comfort of working with the monitor.
So LG’s solution can be called one of the most advanced in this field.
Energy consumption plays an important role in the corporate segment, it is often oriented when updating the monitor fleet. Large 34-inch monitors, similar to the tested model, have a serious advantage: they can replace two 23 “or 24” displays, but they use one set of electronics. All this leads to a significant reduction in power consumption, especially when compared with older monitors with CCFL backlighting.
But LG 34CB98-B can not be called the most economical on the market. In our tests with a brightness of 150 km / m², we received an energy consumption of 40.2 watts.
In our test lab has already visited several 34-inch monitors with a resolution of 3.440 x 1.440 pixels, so the basis for comparison is available. Overall, the LG 34CB98-B showed convincing results. The diagonal of the display goes well with the resolution, you do not have to include zooming. In recent years, Windows scaling has improved noticeably, but some problems still remain. However, as we said above, the scaling here is completely redundant. On the details the monitor shows itself well, although inferior to the models of UHD or even 5K. That is most clearly seen when viewing photos.
Of course, there are plenty of places on the desktop, it’s nice to work on such a monitor. If you often have to edit large Excel spreadsheets or operate multiple windows at the same time, you will quickly experience the advantages of a 34 “panel with a large diagonal and resolution, but in the case of two smaller diagonal monitors, frames, even the thinnest ones, always interfere.
As for the curved panel, it is possible to argue here for a long time. LG chose a radius of curvature of 1.800 mm. Compared to the first generation of curved displays, the curvature became much stronger. Of course, the curved panel improves immersion in games or movies, but horizontal lines cease to be straight. As a result, the same Excel spreadsheets seem very unusual. The same goes for editors, where linear correction of objects is required. However, in practice you become accustomed to curvature quickly, after which you stop noticing the shortcomings. In any case, we recommend working with such a monitor for a while to make your own impression.
The rest of the 34-inch display gives a very bright and contrasting picture. The color reproduction is good, but it is too cold. However, at the IPS panel we were pleased with the wide viewing angles.
If you plan to play from time to time, you will certainly enjoy some of the game features built into the on-screen menu. There is even support for FreeSync, but the frequency range is small, so it’s better for gamers to choose a game model. Also sometimes the response time of pixels is felt, here the 34-inch monitor is inferior to the fast game displays.
In our tests, we got a maximum brightness of 322 cd / m², the average panel value was 305.4 cd / m². It is enough to work comfortably even in brightly lit office buildings. Do not avoid direct sunlight from the back of the user. The uniformity of the backlight is 90%, too, the difference in the brightness of the illumination of different areas can not be seen with the naked eye. The contrast ratio of 915: 1 is also quite good for the IPS panel.
If you remove the too cold standard adjustment, the color rendition of LG 34CB98-B can be called good. The maximum value of delta E is 4.83, the mean is 1.89. In our tests, we got AdobeRGB color coverage 73.55%, in the case of sRGB space – 99.93 (tests were conducted using ArgyllCMS).
However, LG offers different profiles, so with a monitor you can work comfortably with the default settings without the help of a colorimeter. Below is a list of profiles.
Displays with a large diagonal continue to gain popularity. It’s for the better: large monitors not only draw attention to the desktop, but also give a lot of advantages. Gamers benefit from a large visual area of the frame, which improves immersion in games. For work, the most important extra space is the desktop. All this is just offered by LG 34CB98-B.
If you get used to the advantages of a large diagonal, then you hardly want to part with such a monitor. The efficiency of the workflow can be greatly improved by having the right windows in the neighborhood with each other, and not switching between them constantly. The same goes for editing large Excel spreadsheets. In addition, using the OSC utility, the user of the LG monitor will receive a very convenient window management tool. If you had to use two 23-24 “monitors on the desktop, now they can be replaced with a single display.
As for the curved panel in the office environment, then you can argue long. The curved panel provides significant advantages in movies and games, improving immersion. But in working applications, horizontal lines become curves. Although this can quickly get used to.
In the rest, the LG 34CB98-B performed well. The monitor has a traditional design for LG, the appearance is quite strict. The color is completely black, but the display easily fits into the working or home environment. The interface panel, unfortunately, is not turned down, so you have to put up with the cables hanging from behind. Note the presence of a Thunderbolt 2 concentrator, which allows you to connect the monitor in a chain. Of course, we would prefer a more modern Thunderbolt 3 standard with Type C ports, which would allow, for example, to charge the connected laptop.
The housing offers good mechanical adjustment possibilities. LG has provided for a change in the height and tilt of the panel, so the monitor can be given the most comfortable position for many hours of operation. Some competitors provide wider adjustment ranges, but in practice they are rarely needed. The concept of managing the South Korean manufacturer has completely convinced us. The joystick allows you to comfortably select the desired settings in the on-screen menu. Finally, you can use the mentioned OSC utility, through which settings are also available.
Power consumption is not the lowest, many 34-inch monitors on the market work more economically. In any case, you will get noticeable energy savings compared to two monitors with a smaller diagonal, especially older generations.
We estimate the quality of the picture as high. The combination of a resolution of 3.440 x 1.440 pixels and a 34-inch diagonal shows itself convincingly. The brightness of more than 300 cd / m² is more than enough, the uniformity of the backlight also does not cause censures. The contrast is quite typical for the IPS panel. It is a pity that the color rendition is fairly cool, but here the existing profiles with different settings help.
Overall, the LG 34CB98-B is a convincing business display with a wide range of functions, good ergonomics and excellent picture quality. Of course, you have to accept the price of 900 euros, but it is justified, given the good equipment. Is that energy consumption could be a little lower.