Acer Predator X34 Curved G-SYNC Gaming Monitor Review

by Rob Williams on February 15, 2016 in Graphics & Displays

On the lookout for a gaming monitor that can do it all? If price isn’t a concern, Acer’s Predator X34 is the one to look at. It comes in at 34 inches, boasts a 3440×1440 ultra-wide resolution, makes images pop with an IPS panel, takes advantage of NVIDIA’s G-SYNC frame-smoothing technology, and if that’s not enough: it’s curved.

Overclocking The Predator X34

A monitor like this one has so much going on that it’s hard to find room for a complaint. However, in recent years, a trend has proven that many gamers like their monitors to have higher-than-60Hz refresh rates. The problem? Getting those high refresh rates is difficult on monitors that tend to have all of the other bells and whistles tossed in. While the Predator X34 is spec’d at just 60Hz, it’s overclockable “up to” 100Hz.

Overclocking a monitor involves increasing the refresh rate a little at a time to find the “max” stable. A monitor might ship at 60Hz, for example, but with a software tweak, it could be found to run just fine at a higher refresh rate, such as 75Hz. The reason Acer has decided to not ship 100Hz by default is likely due to the fact that it can’t guarantee 100% success. In the case of our sample, we did indeed taste success. Having run our sample at 100Hz for two months, I have no problems to report.

A refresh rate of 100Hz means that a monitor can display 100 frames per second. If a monitor is 60Hz but gameplay exceeds 60 FPS, only 60 of whichever total number of frames will be seen on the monitor each second. The main takeaway is: if you’re able to power a game at 100 FPS, you’ll be able to get smoother gameplay versus playing on a 60Hz monitor.

Time for a truth bomb: you’re going to need a lot of GPU horsepower to hit 100 FPS. Truthfully, you’re not going to see 100 FPS too often even with SLI, because games are either too demanding, or they will likely hit 100 FPS off of a single decent GPU (MOBAs tend to be good examples).

On a PC with a six-core Intel processor and an NVIDIA GeForce GTX TITAN X, I managed to hit 80 FPS in Firewatch (check out our review), which surprised me given it’s not that graphically impressive. I did manage to hit 100 FPS in TrackMania 2, which isn’t much of a surprise given it’s an aging title that wasn’t graphically demanding to begin with. Running Deus Ex: Human Revolution at 100Hz proved a success, too:

Deus Ex Human Revolution - 3440x1440 100Hz

“Overclocking” Acer’s Predator X34 isn’t difficult, and fortunately, you have steps in between 60 and 100Hz in case a full 100Hz isn’t deemed 100% reliable. To overclock, you must hit a button on the monitor and head to a section that allows you to adjust the max refresh. After making a change, the monitor will need to be rebooted (which happens automatically). Once it comes back, you’ll be able to load up your GPU’s control panel and choose to run the monitor at 100Hz:

Acer Predator X34 Running At 100Hz

Before testing the 100Hz setting for real-world use, I loaded up Blur Busters’ UFO Motion Tester. As the below shot shows, the test passed without issue on our sample.

UFO Refresh Rate Test - Acer Predator X34

If you purchase this monitor and can’t get a clean 100Hz test with this tool (don’t touch the mouse while it’s running!), I’d recommend backing the refresh down to 95Hz and keep going down in intervals of 5Hz until the sweet spot is reached. It seems very likely that the vast majority of Predator X34 owners will be able to run 100Hz, though, so this tweaking shouldn’t be needed by many.

Rob Williams

Rob founded Techgage in 2005 to be an 'Advocate of the consumer', focusing on fair reviews and keeping people apprised of news in the tech world. Catering to both enthusiasts and businesses alike; from desktop gaming to professional workstations, and all the supporting software.

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