AOC's Agon AG352UCG monitor review: A monster gaming display
Building an incredibly powerful PC is but a step in the right direction to a glorious gaming experience. The monitor is the next big investment and the AG35UCG by AOC is a beast.
If you fail to splash out the cash on your screen(s), your gaming rig will only be able to provide as good of an experience that is allowed by the display. You could have two GTX 1080 GPUs working together, but with a 1080p display locked down at 60Hz will require some V-Sync assistance to supply a stable viewing reality. To really get the most out of your powerful system, you're going to need to look at higher resolutions, refresh rates, and support for advanced technologies.
The AG35UCG by AOC is part of the company's Agon gaming range of monitors, and even though it's a widescreen, it's a true beast of a display. Here's why.
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This is a feature-rich panel, offering not only a high resolution for increased productivity and higher fidelity in games but also some handy extras like VESA support and low levels of blue light.
|Resolution||3440 x 1440 (WQHD)|
|Sync Technology||Nvidia G-Sync|
2x USB 3.0
|VESA||100 x 100mm|
Straight off the bat, taking the display out of the box reveals its sheer size. This thing is huge. The AG35UCG, as represented by the model name, is a 35-inch monitor, but it's a widescreen display sporting an aspect ratio of 21:9. It's heavy, coming in at 26 lbs (11.8 kg), and actual dimensions are 3.35 x 10.49 x 23.11 inches (85 x 266 x 587 mm). Simply put: you'd need to check you have ample space to accommodate this thing.
That all said, for immersive gaming, you really must go big when it comes to monitors. Once everything is configured and ready to roll, you immediately forget about the size and enjoy the stunning resolution. As for the look and overall design of the display, the AG352UCG fits in with the company's Agon series, sharing similar design elements and coloring. It looks premium and isn't too overboard.
A missed opportunity with the display is with the under glow lighting. There's LED lighting located underneath the main panel, which can be configured to shine either blue, green, or red. It's a subtle effect, and while isn't trashy by any means, AOC has really under delivered here. RGB lighting would have been a superior implementation, allowing for full customization, which could match PC or ambient lighting. Going one further, the company could have even thrown in support for other lighting controllers.
Imagine gaming away while the LEDs surrounding the display reacting to what's shown on-screen. It feels like a bit of a miss.
For connectivity, we have two input ports for HDMI and DisplayPort, as well as two USB 3.0 ports. This is more than enough to hook up a PC and a few peripherals.
What makes widescreen panels interesting is how they provide higher resolution gaming without being too taxing on a system. For instance, should your current display be on its way out and you're looking at 1440p, but are unable to have a stable experience with 4K, a 3440 x 1440 resolution is a nice middle ground to work with. The display has a maximum refresh rate of 100Hz, which is a respectable level for gaming.
Support for Nvidia G-Sync is present, however, so pairing up a compatible GTX card will unlock smoother experiences without any screen tearing. While many gamers will rely on their headphones or immersive speaker systems for sound, AOC has included built-in speakers that aren't too bad. They're not brilliant, but not as terrible as one can find on a whole host of displays, that's for sure.
An important specification to check is response time. This particular panel sports a 4ms response time, which is fairly good for a monitor that's to be used for gaming. 100% sRGB support is also thrown in for good measure, allowing for the reproduction of solid colors, which looks stunning on-screen.
The included mounting stand is a decent enough option to use and allows for manipulation of various angling to set the screen just right. If you'd like to have more options available when it comes to placement, full VESA support is included as AOC standard and is something we've come to expect from the manufacturer with its more expensive monitors.
Pairing up the AG352UCG with a GTX 1070 AMP! Extreme GPU from our test bench produced some stellar results. Firing up GTA V, Battlefield 1, Rise of the Tomb Raider and even Planet Coaster resulted in some excellent color reproduction and stable gameplay thanks in part to Nvidia G-Sync. The curved widescreen resolution makes the display almost wrap around you.
Luckily, looking at the solid list of specifications does not disappoint when it comes to actually throwing together the monitor and enjoying some games. And even when you're not gaming, the AOC panel is a winner for productivity thanks to the expansive real estate for multiple windows, applications, and more. Utilizing the extra onboard features can even result in a more pleasant experience working late at night with reduced glare and blue light emissions.
Go big or go home
For $899, it can be difficult to justify the investment to a lot of people, but the AG352UCG is a stunning display and is well worth the price tag. It also undercuts competitors with similar specifications, though there are some widescreen displays out there with higher resolutions and other panel types. It's worth pointing out again that this is a large monitor and will require a lot of space.
- Gorgeous design.
- Curved widescreen panel.
- Excellent color reproduction.
- VESA support.
- It's HUGE.
- Could do with more ports.
Partnering the unit up with a capable GPU like a GTX 1070 or 1080 will allow for some seriously powerful gaming experiences. Throw in the G-Sync support, excellent color reproduction, and solid resolution and you've got a winner.
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Rich Edmonds was formerly a Senior Editor of PC hardware at Windows Central, covering everything related to PC components and NAS. He's been involved in technology for more than a decade and knows a thing or two about the magic inside a PC chassis. You can follow him on Twitter at @RichEdmonds.
Cheapest wqhd ultrawide with gsync yet. Keep coming down prices! Looks like shared design with all the other 35" panels coming out this year.
What game is that space game?
Stellaris i would guess.
Ah, okay. :)
So, huge is a con?