Who Is It For?
At the start of this review, we mentioned the PA32UC could potentially approach ultimate professional monitor status. And that’s for a couple of reasons: this display provides pro-grade calibration features with the tools you need provided in the box, combined with high-end display hardware, particularly for HDR.
You can do sRGB accurate work, wide gamut accurate work, and HDR work with this monitor. And it’s not fake HDR. We’re talking genuine, full blown HDR with great brightness, elite contrast and proper color support.
Asus is doing this with a 32-inch display, which right now is unique. There are some pro-grade 27-inch HDR monitors with a similar feature set, like the Dell UP2718Q, but at a smaller size. I tend to think 32-inches is a bit better for 4K work, though the UP2718Q is also more affordable so it’s something to consider.
Those looking for just an entertainment or gaming display with HDR shouldn’t opt for the PA32UC, though that should be obvious considering this ProArt display isn’t targeting gamers.
The Acer Predator X27 provides a similar feature set, with great factory calibration and a higher 144 Hz refresh rate with G-Sync HDR, for the same price as the PA32UC.
Those who want to do both creative work and gaming on the one display should also opt for the X27 in my opinion. But if you’re in the market for a proper 32-inch HDR display for content creation, productivity or other professional work, I’d recommend the PA32UC and I’ve been loving using this for my video production workflow over the last weeks and months.
That’s not to say it’s perfect. Input lag is a concern, uniformity isn’t quite where I’d want it to be despite the uniformity calibration feature, the factory calibrated profiles are a little off and contrast without the dynamic backlight enabled is only a mere 700:1 when calibrated. But most of these issues are only minor for productivity work.
The final question is whether you should spend $2,000 on a monitor. In perspective, however, most pro-grade monitors start at around the $1,000 mark, so the asking price of this 32-inch 4K panel with proper HDR doesn’t sound as outrageous, unlike the gaming-grade PG27UQ which is more than triple the price of a good gaming display.
Dell’s 32-inch 4K non-HDR wide gamut professional grade UP3216Q has been around for a couple of years now, originally selling for $1,300, right now you can find it closer to ~$1,000 if you're lucky. That price goes up by $260 if you want the color calibration tool with it, so that gives you an idea of where the PA32UC stands.
The Asus ProArt PA32UC is the complete package for Pros and I've thoroughly enjoyed by time with it, including calibration tool and hardware capabilities of this panel.
- Asus ProArt PA32UC on B&H Photo Video, Newegg
- Asus ProArt monitors on Amazon
- Acer Predator X27 on Amazon
- Dell UltraSharp 27 UP2718Q on Amazon
- Dell UltraSharp 32 UP3216Q on Amazon
Pros: Excellent HDR support, accurate wide gamut support, decent response times. Attractive design. Calibration tool included, and can be used to create accurate profiles that are saved to the monitor.
Cons: Input lag isn't a big issue for creators, but it's particularly poor. Uniformity is only good, without being great like you'd expect for a professional monitor.