Xiaomi is finest recognized for its reasonably priced telephones and equipment, however the listing of product classes it’s prepared to enter grows seemingly by the 12 months. One of the most recent is gaming displays, with a 27-inch mannequin launched in June and a 34-inch ultrawide following final month. I’ve been testing the latter, and it’s really superb for the worth of €399 (or ~$469 — real-world euro-dollar conversions are usually nearer to 1:1, although that gained’t assist US importers).
The Mi Curved Gaming Monitor has a neat minimalist design with a flexible stand that may be tilted, swiveled, raised, and lowered. The stand additionally options magnetic covers that simply pop on and off to help with cable administration, and attaching the monitor itself was very simple.
The monitor’s panel matches as much as what you’d have probably anticipated from a high-end ultrawide a few years in the past, earlier than HDR grew to become extra of a factor on PC. It’s a 34-inch 3440 x 1440 show, which is the usual 21:9 decision for that measurement — it’s mainly like having a 27-inch 1440p display with a 3rd extra horizontal actual property. The monitor’s curvature is 1500R, so it’s not as pronounced as a few of Samsung’s extra excessive latest fashions, nevertheless it feels pure for this measurement.
The panel makes use of VA expertise and appears good. I’ve had it arrange subsequent to my IPS Asus PG279Q, and the colour copy is not less than as sturdy, with a claimed 125 p.c protection of the sRGB gamut. The Xiaomi is a little bit dimmer at 300 nits to the Asus’ 350, nevertheless it’s probably not a problem apart from when the morning solar is streaming by the window with the curtains open. For a monitor that may probably stay in a set place, it’s not an enormous deal, and I respect the shortage of glare from the matte end.
The brightness does imply there’s no HDR assist, not even the lowest-end DisplayHDR 400 specification. But the refresh charge is 144Hz and works with FreeSync, which helps you to play video games at excessive, variable body charges with out tearing. Although FreeSync is designed for AMD GPUs and I’ve an Nvidia GTX 1080, I did get it working with Nvidia’s “G-Sync Compatible” performance, regardless of the monitor not having been formally licensed.
Nvidia’s official line about utilizing an unverified FreeSync monitor like that is “it may work, it may work partly, or it may not work at all,” so I can’t promise across-the-board compatibility. I did discover that the Mi Curved Gaming Monitor may solely run G-Sync at as much as 120Hz, however that’s been greater than sufficient to enhance my 60fps-ish expertise with the shaky PC port of Horizon Zero Dawn.
The Mi Curved Gaming Monitor will get the fundamentals proper, nevertheless it does skip among the nice-to-have options you’ll discover on higher-end merchandise. Two DisplayPort and HDMI ports every is a beneficiant inclusion, however they’re all you get (plus a headphone jack). There’s no USB hub performance in any respect, neither is there USB-C assist for single-cable show output and charging. The UI, managed by 5 small buttons on the again of the show, is pokey and inefficient, and I by no means obtained used to figuring out which button was which by really feel. I’d a lot choose joystick-style controls like on my Asus. I additionally discovered the monitor to be unusually sluggish to get up or change inputs, taking a number of seconds for every operation.
None of these are deal-breakers for the Mi Curved Gaming Monitor’s core performance, although — not less than not for me. If you’ve been eager about stepping into ultrawide gaming and even simply getting extra desktop actual property, I believe this can be a actually good worth choice. It’s undoubtedly value testing in the event you’re in Europe, Australia, India, or the opposite markets the place Xiaomi has a presence.
Photography by Sam Byford / The Verge