Cooler Master is best known for making cases and coolers, but the GM34-CW is the best gaming monitor, which makes a big impression with a curved, widescreen design. The 34in panel has a resolution of 3,440 x 1,440 and an aspect ratio of 21:9, which means racing and shooting titles benefit from the broad field of view, and the 1500R curve proves immersive rather than overwhelming. The size and resolution match those of the LG UltraGear 34GN850, which is our current favorite 34in widescreen gaming panel.
Cooler Master GM34 CW Review
There are few surprises on the inside – the GM34-CW uses a 10 – bit VA panel with a 144Hz refresh rate and 1ms response time. It also supports AMD FreeSync and offers compatibility with Nvidia G-Sync, eliminating tearing artifacts by synchronizing the refresh rate with the frame rate from your best graphics card.
On the outside, the slim bezels and sleek base impress, and build quality is decent. However, the rear lighting is only available in purple and the stand’s extra screws mean it’s tricky to assemble. It offers height, tilt and swivel adjustment, but movement feels stiff, and the GM34-CW supports 75mm VESA mounts rather than 100mm mounting.
Meanwhile, there are pairs of DisplayPort and HDMI connections, but neither HDMI port can run at the display’s peak refresh rate. There are no USB ports either, and the on-screen display is disappointing – the menu is slow and the buttons are stiff. That said, the more expensive LG isn’t much better in these respects – while it has USB ports, it has weaker ergonomics and no lighting.
On the plus side, the Cooler Master’s panel delivers big, bold colors. It rendered 99.4 per cent of the sRGB gamut at 144.6 per cent volume, with 91.2 per cent coverage and 102.4 per cent volume in the DCI-P3 gamut. Combine these results with the acceptable delta E of 3.01 and the color temperature of 6,223K and you’ve got a screen that renders almost every shade needed for gaming with huge punch – colors leap from the screen and almost look over saturated.
Cooler Master GM34-CW Specifications
|Brand & Model||Cooler Master GM34-CW|
|Panel Type & Backlight||VA / W-LED, edge array, Quantum Dot|
|Screen Size & Aspect Ratio||34 inches / 21:9, Curve radius: 1500mm|
|Max Resolution & Refresh||3440×1440 @ 144Hz, FreeSync 48-144Hz, G-Sync compatible|
|Native Color Depth & Gamut||8-bit / DCI-P3, DisplayHDR 400, HDR10|
|Response Time (GTG)||4ms|
|Video Inputs||1x DisplayPort 1.4, 1x HDMI 2.0, 1x HDMI 1.4|
|Audio||3.5mm headphone output|
|Power Consumption||29w, brightness @ 200 nits|
|Panel Dimensions||31.8 x 15.8-19.7 x 10.4 inches|
|WxHxD w/base||(808 x 401-500 x 264mm)|
|Panel Thickness||4 inches (102mm)|
|Bezel Width||Top/sides: 0.4 inch (9mm), Bottom: 0.75 inch (19mm)|
The brightness and black point results of 390cd/m2 and O.12cd/m2 deliver contrast of 3,250:1, which creates tremendous depth. Those figures improve a little in HDR mode, so there’s a noticeable boost to color and contrast, although the lack of sophisticated dimming means there’s not much nuance.
Meanwhile, the 144Hz refresh rate delivered smooth gaming in fast titles, and the solid response time means you can play mainstream esports games here. The LG is a little quicker, but you’ll need to step up to a 240Hz refresh rate for meaningful improvement.
There are some areas where the Cooler Master is less impressive. Its motion blur reduction is poor, with excessive ghosting. The off-center viewing angles aren’t great and there’s a little backlight bleed. However, these issues aren’t ruinous for most gamers. The more expensive LG is faster and has similar color coverage alongside better delta E and temperature figures. That product uses an IPS display, so it loses vibrancy but has more natural color reproduction.
The Cooler Master doesn’t have much in the way of extra features, and you can get better options for super-fast esports, but it does offer a vibrant image and a large, immersive widescreen display for mainstream gaming at a low price. At $549, it’s easy to forgive some of its shortcomings, making this a solid option if you’re looking for a big, bold and immersive display.
Bold colors, huge contrast and a sweeping design make this an affordable and effective option for immersive gaming.