Build Quality and Stand Details
Even though I liked the panel and pricing of the Samsung U28D590D 4K monitor from earlier this month, my biggest complaint fell around the build quality of the stand and the lack of flexibility it offered. The ASUS PB287Q is a far stretch from that situation.
The PB287Q is a 28-in 4K monitor, but should not be confused with the PB278Q, that is a 27-in 2560×1440 monitor. When I reviewed the Samsung U28D590D I found that "wobble" was a big concern for that stand. While not perfect, the ASUS option is much better with heaver, more substantial base that allows it to sit more still and level on various surfaces.
ASUS' stand has height, angle and pivot adjustment to let the user place the screen and angle it correctly for nearly any particular desk setup. Compared to the Samsung monitor that offered only angle adjustment, and minimally, this is a breath of fresh air.
I'm definitely interested in getting a set of 5 of these PB287Q (ASUS?) to run in 5-way Eyefinity while setup in portrait mode. Surely a 10,800 x 3,840 configuration would be worth some testing…?
The ASUS monitor, on the right just has a level of flexibility that the Samsung option cannot offer. Need the display a bit higher with your favorite desk/chair configuration? The PB287Q has you covered while you'll need some old text books to raise the level of the Samsung.
And if you want to get more serious about things and mount the ASUS PB287Q to an articulating arm or multiple display array, the VESA mount capability of the PB287Q will accommodate. That is another feature the Samsung U28D590D can't match.
The bezels, though the same thickness, are quite different as well. The shiny surface of the Samsung looks nice until you get fingerprints or glare coming off of it. With a matte style on the ASUS display the amount of shininess more closely patches that of the screen itself.
The interface on the ASUS PB287Q is more traditional with a set of button along the back of the monitor. I did like the Samsung "joystick" style of interface but some things are just better left alone.
Looking at the back, you can see the power button on the far left (though on the right as you face the screen). ASUS should definitely have moved this button further away or at least made it a different style as I found myself accidentally hitting it a couple times during testing.
Two of the buttons on the far right are actually customizable – you can see them to control the volume, or bring up PiP functionality or many other options, by changing their settings in on-screen display.
Connectivity is downward facing and includes a pair of MHL-capable HDMI ports, a DisplayPort 1.2 connection and two stereo audio outputs. The MHL capability is a lesser known feature that allows users with capable smartphones to directly connect to the HDMI for output. Check your phone (and purchase a specific cable) to see if you can take advantage of it.
Even though the actual screens in use for both monitors are essentially identical, the stand quality and stand features are just much more intelligently integrated with the ASUS PB287Q.