Curved TVs may be enjoying a lukewarm reception, but apparently we love curved monitors in Australia. In a couple of years, Samsung says sales data and market research shows one in three dollars will be spent on curved screens for our PCs and Macs, and there's a very good reason why. When you're sitting close to a monitor, the difference in your eyes' focal distance on a flat diplay versus a curved one is significant. Samsung has nine monitors launching into its Australian line-up this year, and five are curved.
The one monitor that catches our attention from the line-up is the 27-inch CF591 -- it's a curved panel with the same 1800-radian curvature as all of Samsung's other new monitors, which translates to a 19° curve across its horizontal plane. Like all the company's new curved monitors, it's a 1920x1080pixel VA panel, with a 5ms response time, 60Hz refresh rate and FreeSync support. Inputs include one of both HDMI and DisplayPort and legacy VGA, although there's no USB port replicator. At $549.95 it's pretty reasonably priced, too, and also has internal speakers.
As well as the aesthetically pleasing curve, which looks good when you're in front of the screen and when you're walking past it (monitors in lounge rooms and bedrooms are becoming more common), FreeSync means no frame-skipping during graphically intensive gameplay on AMD (and eventually Intel) graphics cards. Sure, a faster overall refresh rate might be nicer for hardcore gamers, but the mainstream graphics cards of today are happiest at that 1080p/60fps sweet spot.
Ranging from $289.95 for the curved 21.5-inch CF390 (16° curve, 1080p, 5ms, 60Hz) through $349.95 and $519.95 for the 24-inch and 27-inch CF390 of the same specs, the only new screen above the 27-inch CF591 in size and price is the 32-inch CF391: a glossy white-bezeled panel with a 1080p resolution and 22° curvature across its width. All these new monitors are out in Australia now.