Asus announces its first 3D displays

First model available in July

ALTHOUGH ASUS ALREADY has a notebook with 3D Vision support, today the company announced its first 3D Vision compatible displays. The first model which will be available from next month sports a 23.6-inch panel, but Asus will also launch a 27-inch model in the fourth quarter. Also set to launch is a “professional” P-IPS based display in the fourth quarter alongside the 27-inch 3D display.

We’re fairly certain that the uptake of 3D Vision displays is anything but huge, but then again most models to date have been fairly lackluster in terms of resolution, bar the Alienware OptX AW2310 which is still priced at about twice that of your average LCD screen at $449.  Nvidia claims that there is no less than four 120Hz 3D Vision ready displays in the market – including the Alienware – although it seems like none of them are readily available with the exception of the Acer GD235HZ.

So the good news here, at least for Asus, is that there isn’t a whole lot of competition in the market. The VG236H, as the 23.6-inch models is called, has a fairly plain, yet pleasing design, unlike the one with the bright orange stand. Asus has also been clever enough to kit out the VG236H with a height adjustable stand, something that is missing way too often from displays these days. In terms of connectivity Asus has gone with a fairly simple setup with a single DVI and HDMI port, as well as a set of component video inputs. To use it in 120Hz mode which is required for 3D Vision to work, you need a dual-link DVI cable, so in other words, the 120Hz mode doesn’t work with the other inputs.

Asus also supplies the 3D Vision kit with the display as part of the package which doesn’t seem to be the case of its competitors. This means that you don’t have to spend the extra $199 that the 3D Vision kit costs on its own in addition to the display. However, the VG236H is priced at a steep NT$17,900 ($555) in Taiwan, although if you deduct the cost of the glasses, that’s a very competitive $355 which makes it the cheapest 3D Vision enabled display on the market. It should retail for less in the US, as despite Asus being a Taiwanese company, many, if not all of its products are priced higher in Taiwan than the US.

With regards to the second model, the PG276H, we can only offer you some basic information, although a demo unit was on display, Asus wasn’t forthcoming with a lot of details, but what we do know is that it has a 27-inch panel with 1920×1080 resolution making it the largest 3D Vision display to date. It has a rather unusual stand seemingly an ongoing feature of Asus recent line of LCD screens, although this also means that you’re somewhat limited as to where you can place it. A wide range of inputs are also located around the back as you can see from the picture.

The PG276H has a dual-link DVI port, but it also sports a D-sub connector, an HDMI port and component video inputs. It also appears to feature built in speakers, as both the DVI and D-sub connectors have an adjoining 3.5mm audio jack, while the component video jacks have a pair of RCA audio connectors next to them. Finally the HDMI port appears to have a coaxial S/PDIF out below it which will allow you to connect it to a surround sound amplifier. We don’t know what it’ll cost, but we’d expect it to be fairly pricy considering all the features and the large LCD panel.

The one model we didn’t get to see was the PA246Q, which is not a 3D display, instead it’s targeted towards professional users and as far as we know, this is Asus’ first display with a P-IPS panel. We’d hazard a guess that the P stands for Professional, but we’re not sure who the manufacturer of this panel is, as this isn’t a common acronym for any IPS panels that we’re familiar with. We don’t have a picture or any more details, although we should hopefully find out more about this model at Computex.S|A

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