Samsung on Friday announced the C49HG90 monitor, their new flagship gaming monitor that includes virtually all of the major gaming-oriented display technologies available today. The new 49” screen has a an ultra-wide 32:9 aspect ratio, a 144 Hz refresh rate, and uses quantum dot nanocrystals to enable support for DCI-P3 color gamut, and, perhaps most importantly, it supports AMD’s forthcoming FreeSync 2 technology. In addition, Samsung introduced its CHG70-series displays that will support the same technologies, but will be smaller and more affordable.

The Samsung C49HG90 is the company’s first ultra-wide display with the 32:9 aspect ratio and the so-called double full HD (DFHD) resolution (3840×1080). The monitor is based on a VA panel with up to 600 nits brightness, 1 ms moving picture response time (MPRT) as well as a 144 Hz refresh rate, two features important for fast-moving games. The panel has 1800R curvature along with 178° viewing angles to make gaming experience more immersive. The smaller C32HG70 and C27HG70 monitors use 32” and 27” curved VA panels (respectively) with a 2560×1440 resolution as well as the same refresh rate and MPRT as on the flagship model.

Large dimensions, curvature and a high refresh rate are not the only distinctive features of Samsung’s new breed of gaming displays. The C49HG90 features LED backlighting enhanced with quantum dots that enable support for the DCI-P3 color space (as well as larger-than-sRGB gamut) and the HDR-focused AMD’s FreeSync 2. Samsung claims that the QLED backlighting of the display is similar to that used in its high-end UHDTVs with HDR, but does not say anything about features like local dimming or formal support for the HDR10 spec. Keeping in mind that Samsung’s announcement is focused around games and FreeSync 2 (and the latter uses its own HDR transport) the status of the HDR10 support isn't known at this time.

Meanwhile, Samsung’s HDR implementation makes the CHG70- and the CHG90-series displays the first to support AMD’s FreeSync 2, which is something bigger than just a new dynamic refresh rate technology (as discussed in the appropriate article). The FreeSync 2 mandates support for Low Framerate Compensation – an optional feature for FreeSync 1 monitors – but the biggest shift from a feature perspective is how HDR works. Rather than double-tone mapping the dynamic range – tone mapping a game once from its rendering space to HDR10's space, and then again in the monitor from HDR10 to the monitor's native space – FreeSync 2 skips the middle-man by having games tone map directly to a monitor's native dynamic range. This saves potentially precious milliseconds both by removing a step, and by putting the extremely fast GPU in charge of the process instead of the historically inconsistent display processors inside monitors.

As this is the first FreeSync 2-related news to hit the scene in nearly 5 months, there are some remaining questions that at least as of Samsung's announcement have not yet been answered. Chiefly, when AMD will enable FreeSync 2 support on their end, as all of the heavy lifting is being done by AMD's drivers. Coupled with that is a need for FreeSync 2-enabled software – since devs need to code for it – so that there's something to use with the display. Samsung says that it had collaborated with DICE and Ghost Games to enable HDR in the upcoming Star Wars Battlefront II and Need for Speed Payback games, which may indicate that these two titles will be among the first to support AMD’s FreeSync 2.

Samsung CHG70 and CHG90 QLED Gaming Monitors with AMD FreeSync 2
C32HG70 C27HG70
Panel 49" VA 31.5" VA 27" VA
Native Resolution 3840 × 1080 2560 × 1440
Maximum Refresh Rate 144 Hz
Response Time 1 ms MPRT
Brightness 600 cd/m²
Contrast 3000:1 (typical)
2400:1 (minimal)
Backlighting LED w/Quantum Dots
Viewing Angles 178°/178° horizontal/vertical
Curvature 1800R
Aspect Ratio 32:9 (3.56:1) 16:9
Color Gamut 95% DCI-P3
Dynamic Refresh Rate Tech AMD FreeSync 2
Pixel Pitch 0.312 mm² 0.2767 mm² 0.2335 mm²
Pixel Density 81.41 PPI 91.79 PPI 108.8 PPI
Inputs 1 × DP
1 × mDP
2 × HDMI
1 × DP
2 × HDMI
Audio 3.5 mm input and output
USB Hub 2 × USB 3.0 Type-A connectors
1 × USB 3.0 Type-B input
MSRP $1499 $699 $599

Samsung plans to demonstrate its CHG70- and the CHG90-series monitors in action at the Ubisoft booth at the E3 convention this week, just a couple of weeks before the devices will hit the market. This in turn implies that this Ubisoft is also set to support AMD’s FreeSync 2 (good news for the GPU developer) in at least some of its titles, but this is a speculation for now.

While the C27HG70 and C32HG70 look like rather regular gaming displays with a high refresh rate and FreeSync 2, HDR and DCI-P3 support as important bonuses, the C49HG90 seems like an experimental model that will compete against multi-monitor setups. Consumer displays with the 21:9 aspect ratio have been available for several years now and are gaining traction, but so far, no monitor manufacturer has attempted to offer a very large monitor with the 32:9 aspect ratio and a relatively low DPI. People buying the C49HG90 will not be able to watch 4K content on them in native resolution and that may stop some gamers from adopting it. On the other hand, those who use multi-display setups for ultra-wide screen gaming today do not necessarily enjoy 4K video anyway.

The Samsung C49HG90 will be available in late June at a price of $1499. The monitor is now available for pre-order at Amazon and Micro Center in the U.S. The 32” C32HG70 will cost $699 and is available for pre-order at Newegg, whereas the 27” C27HG70 will be priced at $599 and can be pre-ordered from Samsung now.

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Source: Samsung

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  • Alistair - Monday, June 12, 2017 - link

    Since the new xbox supports supersampling, maybe 1440p downscaled from 4k will be a supported resolution? One can hope :)
  • Nottheface - Monday, June 12, 2017 - link

    Ah marketing, so what are they going to call the QLED products when they are truly LED screens versus LCD with LED backlighting? I have always disliked them marketing such products as LED where you have difficulty even finding LCD associated with it at all. Really, go to Samsung's site about their QLED, I don't remember being able to find even 1 reference to LCD on those pages.
  • Sergio526 - Monday, June 12, 2017 - link

    Nope, still not a true LED screen. It's an LCD screen with LED backlight and a tri-color quantum dot "filter" between them to enhance the colors. All of these technologies are just stop gaps until OLED monitors become affordable and burn-in is further reduced.

    I don't think we'll ever get to the point where they'll be able to cram 8,294,400 RGB LEDs onto a 32" display with no gaps between them and without a very large, very loud liquid cooling system.
  • Notmyusualid - Monday, June 12, 2017 - link

    I was looking at the pics thinking 'wow'...

    I was feeling my pockets for my wallet - 'till I read the 49" had a verticle resolution of 1080.

    That'll be a 'no' from me then...
  • zodiacfml - Monday, June 12, 2017 - link

    I agree. The aspect ratio is so wide and short that the 49" spec is exaggerated compared to 16:9 screen
  • Icehawk - Monday, June 12, 2017 - link

    I guess it can replace a double monitor work setup. A few of our execs have been making us pull their monitors and replace with equivalent single curved screens. That use case has no need for 144hz and likely HDR and expanded color spaces are worthless too. For gaming not nearly enough vertical resolution, even 1440 would be a nice improvement. Maybe if you watch a lot of wide format movies at your desk? Seems pretty bad for that though really since you can't get 4K native, might as well buy a nice shiny tv for that for a heck of a lot less.
  • Makaveli - Monday, June 12, 2017 - link

    This ^^^ the vertical resolution is too low 1080p yuck.

    If was in the market for a new screen I would go with the 32 1440p model.

    27 and 1440 is abit small for text.
  • Hubb1e - Monday, June 12, 2017 - link

    It's the equivalent of 2x27" monitors so judging by your comment about 1440 on a 27" the text would be too small if the 49" monitor had 1440 vertical resolution. It would also be extremely difficult for a single GPU to drive that 2X 1440p resolution. 1080p was the right choice for gamers though I think it would work better if it was a bit smaller and was the equivalent of 2 X 25" monitors. 1080p on a 27" isn't the greatest pixel density. I would need to push the display back on my desk a bit.
  • zodiacfml - Monday, June 12, 2017 - link

    C32HG70 is interesting. Not 4K but decently priced compared to upcoming 4K monitors with the same specs
  • BrokenCrayons - Monday, June 12, 2017 - link

    That's a bit too wide for my tastes and I'm still not entirely sold on the idea of a curved panel.

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