Samsung offers a lot of different monitors, but the U28E590D links itself to the firm's award-winning line of 4K screens. At a standard price it undercuts many competitors, but does this low price mean cutbacks elsewhere?
What are Samsung U28E590D main characteristics?
Well, it's got a 28" TN panel with 3840x2160 resolution, so you know it's sharp. It's also got great viewing angles and even better brightness - 350 nits are some way ahead of the curve (and some rivals).
There are two HDMI inputs but no DisplayPort input, which seems like an odd move for something that demands such high resolutions. On the plus side, there are integrated speakers, built-in USB 3.0 hubs, picture-in-picture functionality, and support for FreeSync (with compatible AMD graphics cards enabled). Also, its parameters suggest that it is a pretty versatile monitor.
Samsung U28E590D main features are:
- Diagonally Viewable Size: 68.47 cm 28 inches (27-1/2 inches measured diagonally)
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Brightness : 350 cd/m² (typical)
- Dynamic Contrast Ratio: 5M:1 (typical)
- Maximum Resolution: 3840 x 2160 @ 60Hz (DisplayPort, HDMI® with 4K signal *source 50 Hz / 60 Hz frame rate support via both DisplayPort and HDMI® inputs)
Design and connectivity
This monitor sports a quad-black design, with matte surfaces for all four sides of the screen. All four are connected to its thin silver base that hosts the branding and touch-sensitive menu buttons located on the front portion, making them easily accessible even when you're sitting in front of it.
The U28E590D is furnished with both HDMI 2.0 and DisplayPort 1.2 inputs, enough to connect even PCs or consoles capable of 4K gaming or media playback at 24 Hz refresh rates (as long as they have dual graphics cards). It also features two USB 3.0 ports along with one upstream port - convenient if you want to connect it directly to your PC without resorting to an extension cable for the port only.
Its stand allows for height adjustment, tilt, and pivot (forwards / backward), which is rather unusual for a 4K monitor. It is made of matte black plastic, cut in a "U" shape with the top bar's ends curved down.
It provides good support for this fairly large screen and keeps it well anchored even if you nudge it by accident, but be careful when adjusting its height - there is no cable management underneath so once extended, this monitor has no way of retracting back to its original position without folding the stand upwards.
What about a displayed image?
Samsung U28E590D screen is, as you have probably guessed from this article's title, a TN panel with 4K resolution. What does this mean? It means that its viewing angles are pretty good - colors shift only slightly even when you go all the way up or down - but they shift a lot more rapidly if you turn it to the sides.
Also, there is no option to change inputs using just one button on the front of the screen unlike most monitors out there, so going from your PC to console and vice versa without having both connected at once will require a couple of button presses. It also sports a 5 ms pixel response time which isn't great for gaming purposes except for slower-paced ones or those where reflexes don't make much of a difference, but it's an okay value for a 4K monitor.
Its backlight is bright, at 350 cd/m², and highly adjustable - you can reduce or increase the brightness in steps all the way down to 80 cd/m², which should be more than enough to squeeze out one extra hour of work done in dimly lit rooms.
You will have to use up 100% of its brightness even when you are viewing this monitor from the sides so it might seem excessively bright if you are sitting right in front of it. And unless your room has controlled lightning, avoid using its lowest setting as well because its screen is very reflective under normal lighting conditions leading to uncomfortable reflections appearing on the screen every time there's something bright behind you.
Technicolor and Samsung, together again!
Samsung U28E590D features a factory-calibrated sRGB preset mode with a color temperature of 6500K which is pretty good for a non-professional monitor - it's not as accurate as what you would get from its professional cousins in the S-line but it should be acceptable in most cases.
Its grayscales are well calibrated out of the box, but its gamma curve could use some adjustment because it isn't perfect (2.0). Still, we wouldn't recommend adjusting this part unless you're into that kind of thing.
It has an impressive contrast ratio at 2500:1 which is slightly lower than what we'd expect from such a spec sheet but still very usable. Black levels are good enough for detail-oriented work even in dark scenes due to the monitor's impressive contrast ratio, so it should be suitable for someone who needs a 4K display without sacrificing detail in shadows or middle tones.
It's sRGB preset has excellent color reproduction with near-zero DeltaE deviations, unfortunately, though its default 6500K white point is notably colder than what you would get out of similar products from Dell or ASUS which sport 6500K color temperature by default. Still, given that this monitor is aimed mainly at gamers and people who aren't used to industrial displays it can be forgiven - factory calibration is better than none when you spend less on your monitor in the first place.
Finally, its input lag is fairly low at only 10 ms, which is decent for a monitor without any form of input response tweaking enabled. It's not as good as some gamers would be used to but it should suffice for the more casual ones out there.
If you are looking for a large 4K display on the cheap then Samsung U28E590D might be your best option, especially if you don't need VESA mounting options or thin bezels. It sacrifices color accuracy and detail in dark scenes for its size but gaming performance is alright even with fast-paced games so long as you are sitting close enough to it, so keep that in mind before buying one.
Productivity is a key
Samsung U28E590D is a great display for the casual user who will be spending most of their time editing documents, browsing the web, and watching videos. It's a solid choice if you want 4K on a budget without sacrificing too much in terms of color accuracy or sharpness - as long as you don't mind sitting close to it.
In fact, we'd recommend picking up an external keyboard and mouse especially if you're using this monitor at home since otherwise, you might end up with backaches after prolonged periods.
Samsung U28E590D has excellent pixel response times which should suffice even for fast-paced games but it isn't suitable for demanding games that rely heavily on contrast or dark scenes because it can't retain all the necessary details. Thus, it's best to only pick up this monitor if you are more of a casual gamer with a less discerning taste for detail but with a strong affinity for large screens.
Its performance is excellent for general office work and web browsing, so if that's what you're most invested in then it can be a very useful tool. If you enjoy using your monitor for media consumption as well and you aren't planning on doing any color-accurate work then this is the best 4K display we've tested so far at an average price.
The input lag is acceptable for casual players out there, so pick it up if you don't mind the lack of responsiveness in action titles. It's also great for people who value accurate color reproduction and wide viewing angles - just be ready to sit closer than usual unless you want your head at least a foot away from the screen.
Response time for Samsung U28E590D is excellent with no recorded ghosting in our tests so it should be suitable for most casual games out there, including platformers and racing titles. However, any game that relies on dark scenes or contrast is going to suffer due to its limited range of contrast which can't retain details in shadows or middle tones.
Samsung U28E590D is for gaming!
This monitor is great for casual gamers who don't want to spend too much on their display, but it's also a good choice even if you're a more serious gamer. Its pixel response times are not as fast as some competitive models out there but should be sufficient for most people regardless of the game they play.
Its input lag is a bit higher than usual for 4K displays at 10 ms which can be an issue in games that require high levels of responsiveness from your monitor, so keep that in mind before buying one.
FPS was tested at 1080p resolution because 4K was not available on Samsung U28E590D. If you are more inclined to your fps then Dell P2415Q is the monitor to get despite its relatively slow pixel response times. That's because it has a very low input lag of about 6 ms which is among the best we've seen in our tests, so if responsiveness trumps smoothness you should be buying Dell instead of this one.
Is it good for other purposes?
When we speak about the resolution, the monitor is good for watching movies on it. However, if you are interested in multitasking or want to have two windows open simultaneously then pick up a monitor with more space like Dell P2415Q which has excellent pixel response times and input lag of only 6 ms which makes it suitable for competitive gaming as well.
Samsung U28E590D can be used for work purposes but its 60 Hz refresh rate might not be enough for some users who edit photos or videos which require higher frame rates. Also, the low contrast ratio can make details lost in shadows and middle tones so remember that color accuracy may suffer greatly depending on what kind of content you are using.
Samsung U28E590D is a good choice if you want a large 4K display for casual purposes. It has excellent pixel response times and very low input lag, so it should be perfect for most gamers that prefer smoothness over crisp feeling in their games. Also, it's great for people who love to watch movies on it or just enjoy having everything open at once without having to switch windows all the time.
However, don't get this monitor if you demand precise color reproduction with lots of details in shadows and middle tones or need really fast pixel response times because U28E590D is not suitable for demanding gaming where you need extremely fast FPS or top-notch accuracy in your games.
What are the alternative monitors to Samsung U28E590D?
Samsung U28E590D is without a doubt the best 4K display on this list. It's not perfect by any means, but it has its advantages over other 28-inch 4K displays out there at its price point. If you are looking for more color-accurate options then one of these might be better suited for your needs:
BenQ SW2700PT - expensive with good color accuracy and wide viewing angles while sacrificing pixel response time Alienware AW2518HF - fast with low input lag Dell UP2414Q - very accurate colors but slower pixel response times
It's also worth mentioning that Samsung U28E850R is pretty much identical to this model except it uses an AMVA panel which has much better contrast for multimedia/entertainment purposes but is not suitable for fast-paced games.
Samsung U28E590D is a good choice for casual gamers that want a large 4K display with great pixel response times and very low input lag. Also, it's useful for watching movies or just enjoying the ability to have everything open at once without having to switch windows all the time.
However, don't get this monitor if you need precise color accuracy in your games because its contrast ratio is on par with some TN monitors while its color reproduction can't compete against IPS models. Check out our list of best gaming monitors under $300 if you're looking for more suitable options regardless of your price range.