Dell Alienware AW3423DWF 34″ QD-OLED 165Hz FreeSync Premium Pro (3440 x 1440)

Draver

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I though I'd start a new thread to consolidate the latest information and user experience about the AW3423DWF which is the FreeSync version of the AW3423DW.

One really good thing about this revised model is that the Firmware can be upgraded by the user as shown by the firmware already posted on Dell website. This specific firmware seems to mention fan noise fixes, so it looks like this model will still have at least one fan. Monitor documentation showing a couple of new features in the OSD can also be found at that link.

From tftcentral we get the following information, including the VRR range (48 - 165Hz):
  • Aesthetically the monitor uses Dell’s ‘Dark Side of the Moon’ colour scheme rather than ‘Lunar Light’, which features dark grey matte plastic instead of the white colours of the existing model on the back.
  • The screen is a little slimmer and lighter, making it easier to VESA mount apparently
  • Dell are no longer using the NVIDIA Native G-sync module for this version, instead using adaptive-sync to deliver VRR support. This will still support both AMD and NVIDIA systems, although it remains to be seen whether it has an impact on VRR experience and performance when removing the module. The removal of the G-sync module is one of the reasons for the lower price point by the way
  • The VRR range is now 48 – 165Hz, with a slightly lower max refresh rate of 165Hz (compared with 175Hz on the existing model) and a narrower VRR range because of the removal of the G-sync module. LFC is included though for anything <48Hz.
  • AMD FreeSync Premium Pro and the new VESA AdaptiveSync certifications are included, but the screen does not carry any NVIDIA certifications at this time, whereas the old model because of the G-sync module carried the ‘NVIDIA G-sync Ultimate’ certification
  • The RGB lighting ring around the back of the stand appears to have been dropped on the new model, although the Alien logo and screen size lighting on the back of the screen appear to be there still
  • The press release says there is a “new OSD joystick” although we are not sure how different, if at all, this is from the current AW3423DW which also has a joystick controller.
  • The F model has 2x DisplayPort 1.4 inputs and 1x HDMI 2.0, whereas the existing model has only 1x DisplayPort 1.4 but 2x HDMI 2.0
  • Price – Available in North America later this fall starting at USD $1,099.99 or CAD $1,399.99.
 

Draver

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According to reddit, Alienware is doing an announcement at noon eastern time on their Twitch. Might be for this.
 

Mchart

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I suppose this one would make sense if you can't use g-sync, but it's a shame it's only 165hz vs 175hz of the g-sync model. Also, the g-sync model is only $100 more at this point.
 

SoCali

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I don't really understand the point of this if it still has a fan considering the 10hz loss and only $100 price point difference between the 2.
 

undertaker2k8

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I don't really understand the point of this if it still has a fan considering the 10hz loss and only $100 price point difference between the 2.
4k virtual input for consoles too, if I was getting one it would be this over the DW.
 

Ankle

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I don't really understand the point of this if it still has a fan considering the 10hz loss and only $100 price point difference between the 2.
0hz difference if you run at 10bit and are stuck at 144hz. I’d gladly keep the $200 CAD difference in that case.

Sure is a shame they kept the fan in there though or I would bite. Standby turning off completely and the fans had me return the dw immediately. Not particularly confident retaining one fan is going to be quiet enough to go through the trouble again if it bothers me still.
 

undertaker2k8

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0hz difference if you run at 10bit and are stuck at 144hz. I’d gladly keep the $200 CAD difference in that case.

Sure is a shame they kept the fan in there though or I would bite. Standby turning off completely and the fans had me return the dw immediately. Not particularly confident retaining one fan is going to be quiet enough to go through the trouble again if it bothers me still.
The shutdown issue is resolved with the latest fw on the DW and than fan noise is not something I ever noticed.
 

Mchart

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The shutdown issue is resolved with the latest fw on the DW and than fan noise is not something I ever noticed.
Yeah, the fan on these I don't notice at all. It's absolutely nothing compared to some of the FALD g-sync displays.
 

Ankle

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Good to hear they fixed the standby issue.

Fan noise was the first thing I noticed setting up the dw. But I live in the middle of nowhere with about the lowest possible noise floor and am pretty picky about having a silent rig. Tbh I thought it was worse than the apple studio display fan wise and that thing was bad enough I sent it straight back for my office setup.

The day 1 firmware update for the dwf has me curious if they lowered the curve enough to give it a go.
 

Draver

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Good to hear they fixed the standby issue.

Fan noise was the first thing I noticed setting up the dw. But I live in the middle of nowhere with about the lowest possible noise floor and am pretty picky about having a silent rig. Tbh I thought it was worse than the apple studio display fan wise and that thing was bad enough I sent it straight back for my office setup.

The day 1 firmware update for the dwf has me curious if they lowered the curve enough to give it a go.
Well if you're willing to wait a little, I should get mine by the end of next week. I'll let you know how it sounds, if at all. Some in the US should get it sooner still, so you'll probably hear some of their feedback in the next few days.
 

killy754

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0hz difference if you run at 10bit and are stuck at 144hz. I’d gladly keep the $200 CAD difference in that case.

Sure is a shame they kept the fan in there though or I would bite. Standby turning off completely and the fans had me return the dw immediately. Not particularly confident retaining one fan is going to be quiet enough to go through the trouble again if it bothers me still.
Why would you run it at 10bit when every reviewer has said the difference isn’t noticeable?
 

LigTasm

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I’m considering changing from my FO48U to one of these since it’s so hard to get a high end gpu now. I’ve been waiting for more OLED panels because I can’t give up the colors any more. I didn’t want to be locked in to Nvidia with the gsync model.
 

Ankle

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Why would you run it at 10bit when every reviewer has said the difference isn’t noticeable?
Having spent a considerable amount of time working on video encoding software I have cursed pixel peeping skills. While I can’t speak for this panel I can pick out 10bit vs 8bit FRC in test patterns and see posterization induced from calibrating without using a higher bit 3d lut. I’d rather not buy a 10bit panel and run with dithering least I notice it and can’t unsee it.

I kinda regret buying a C1 for the living room because I can see the near black dithering LG is doing in addition to the dithering AppleTV does on all output. Don’t get me started on the “fixed” raised blacks in DV which is most definitely not fixed on 2nd and 3rd gen 4K appletvs. :(

Besides I run 5k2k DLDSR pretty much everywhere and won’t be hitting 144+ fps.

Unfortunately it seems like the dwf is limited to 100hz at 10bit and 120hz if you use a custom resolution instead:
https://reddit.com/r/ultrawidemaste...w3423dwf_cannot_do_10bit_144hz165hz_11122022/

Looks like I’ll have to wait and see if Samsung’s QDOLED is gonna be a better fit or wait it out for 2nd generation models.
 

Draver

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Tom's hardware reviewed it. He seems to prefer the DWF compared to the DW, citing gamma issues being fixed on the DWF as well as reduced input lag for example.
 

Ankle

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Tom's hardware reviewed it. He seems to prefer the DWF compared to the DW, citing gamma issues being fixed on the DWF as well as reduced input lag for example.
Good to hear gamma tracking at 2.2 is improved but it looks like the eotf tracking is fixed in HDR 400 True Black but not HDR1000 according to Tom’s?

Ah it’s a tough internal debate if I want to settle for 10bit 120hz or not here.

Edit: looks like the difference in both refresh at 10bit and the input latency comes down to how pixel shifting is handled on the dwf vs the dw:
https://reddit.com/r/ultrawidemasterrace/comments/yvdlcb/aw3423dwf_refreshrate_explained/
 
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Draver

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Yah I saw that post yesterday evening. Really good find from that guy!

About gamma, according to Tom's it does seems like the DWF is perfect at HDR 400 but not so much at HDR 1000. From my limited understanding, the panel itself is really HDR 400 and Dell added the HDR 1000 out of specs. Still, a firmware update should be able to fix this. What I'm really eager to see though is if they implemented something for VRR dark flickering. I haven't read any feedback about that so far.

As for the 10bit, you mentionned that you can spot it easily. Are you using an Nvidia card ? If so, I'm surprise you can spot the dithering from it since everybody says that's its indistinguishable. You must have a very keen eye!
 
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Fleat

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Good to hear they fixed the standby issue.

Fan noise was the first thing I noticed setting up the dw. But I live in the middle of nowhere with about the lowest possible noise floor and am pretty picky about having a silent rig. Tbh I thought it was worse than the apple studio display fan wise and that thing was bad enough I sent it straight back for my office setup.

The day 1 firmware update for the dwf has me curious if they lowered the curve enough to give it a go.
This aligns with my impression as well. I received the AW3423DW five days ago with the newer M0B102 firmware and the fan noise is bad enough that I am heavily considering returning it even though the monitor is quite impressive outside of that. If I am working on anything that includes light content, the fan will ramp up and stay running at a noticeable volume with some intermittent "huffing" type sounds. Not only is the monitor fan louder than my computer, it has an annoying duty cycle and fan curve.

I am strongly considering the AW3423DWF to test out even though I got the DW model cheaper than the retail price for the DWF.
 

Hulk

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How is the text fringing on the DWF compared to the DW version?
 

undertaker2k8

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All the current generation consoles support 1440p now, so this isn't really a big deal anymore
4k virtual input enables the console to feed 4k to the display and the display to downscale it, useful for slightly higher IQ in some cases and in the case of PS5 would make VRR available which they idiotically don't support at 1440p, only 1080/4k. Having said that I'm not getting confirmation of this feature from reviews despite being mentioned in early PRs, anyone with the DWF care to chime in/test?
 

Enhanced Interrogator

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4k virtual input enables the console to feed 4k to the display and the display to downscale it, useful for slightly higher IQ in some cases and in the case of PS5 would make VRR available which they idiotically don't support at 1440p, only 1080/4k.

I imagine they're going to fix the VRR issue, would be incredibly dumb if they didn't. An R9 380x I put in my dad's PC supports VRR at 1440p on his Samsung TV. But I guess we'll see, Sony might take a long time to fix it unfortunately

But the PS5 does downscale higher res games to 1440p, it doesn't have separate target render resolutions based on output resolution like the PS4 Pro did.
 

Arkanian

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So I have the DW and I am going to switch from a 2070super to 7900XTX. Does the DW do FreeSync? Wasn't sure if I was going to have an issue with the 7900XTX and the DW.
 

Draver

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Fan noise was the first thing I noticed setting up the dw. But I live in the middle of nowhere with about the lowest possible noise floor and am pretty picky about having a silent rig. Tbh I thought it was worse than the apple studio display fan wise and that thing was bad enough I sent it straight back for my office setup.

The day 1 firmware update for the dwf has me curious if they lowered the curve enough to give it a go.
Though I'd give you an answer on that one since I received the DWF today. The fan is not audible, at all. If I put me ear right on top of the screen louvers and align it with where I think the fan is, I can hear a very faint noise; I'm not even sure if it's from the monitor fan or just noise reflection from my computer fans (which is under my desk). If I turn off the computer and isolate the monitor noise, its so faint that the only way to hear it is to put your ear right on top of louvers. It's completely silent to my ears at normal viewing distance. So there you go.
 

Draver

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About the HDR Tone Mapping difference between the DW and DWF spoken by Linus, HDR 1000 can be "fixed" by enabling console mode on the monitor and turning Source Tone Map to On. I'm not sure why that's not how it is by default. Without this change HDR 1000 is unusable in many games.
 

Ankle

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Though I'd give you an answer on that one since I received the DWF today. The fan is not audible, at all. If I put me ear right on top of the screen louvers and align it with where I think the fan is, I can hear a very faint noise; I'm not even sure if it's from the monitor fan or just noise reflection from my computer fans (which is under my desk). If I turn off the computer and isolate the monitor noise, its so faint that the only way to hear it is to put your ear right on top of louvers. It's completely silent to my ears at normal viewing distance. So there you go.
Fantastic. Pulled the trigger on it and it should be here in about a week. Fingers crossed for no scratching or dead/stuck pixels.

Did yours ship with the latest firmware? Curious since it mentioned the tweaks to the fans.

About the HDR Tone Mapping difference between the DW and DWF spoken by Linus, HDR 1000 can be "fixed" by enabling console mode on the monitor and turning Source Tone Map to On. I'm not sure why that's not how it is by default. Without this change HDR 1000 is unusable in many games.

Is “source tone map” dells wording for HGIG here? The manual’s description makes it sound like it: “Select to allow the HDR content to be tone mapped by the source device.”

Does the dwf have any sort of 3d lut or 22 point calibration option? Or strictly icc and RGB controls in the OSD? Debating ordering an i1pro 3 and cc display plus to deal with dv and sdr black crush on the c1 and it would be nice to get a little more use out of em.

Edit:
Looks like 10bit is working up to 150hz utilizing CVT-RB:
https://reddit.com/r/ultrawidemasterrace/comments/yyaj82/aw3423dwf_can_do_10bit_hdr_150hz_frequency/
 
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Draver

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Fantastic. Pulled the trigger on it and it should be here in about a week. Fingers crossed for no scratching or dead/stuck pixels.

Did yours ship with the latest firmware? Curious since it mentioned the tweaks to the fans.

Is “source tone map” dells wording for HGIG here? The manual’s description makes it sound like it: “Select to allow the HDR content to be tone mapped by the source device.”

Does the dwf have any sort of 3d lut or 22 point calibration option? Or strictly icc and RGB controls in the OSD? Debating ordering an i1pro 3 and cc display plus to deal with dv and sdr black crush on the c1 and it would be nice to get a little more use out of em.

Edit:
Looks like 10bit is working up to 150hz utilizing CVT-RB:
https://reddit.com/r/ultrawidemasterrace/comments/yyaj82/aw3423dwf_can_do_10bit_hdr_150hz_frequency/
I had a little bit of scratching/smudge at the top of the screen. I was able to remove 95% of them with the included cloth damp with water. My feeling on this is that for us Canadian, because of the transit time/distance the box has to travel with courier, it'll be hard to get a perfect unit. Either way it was invisible in normal use before cleaning it up.

It shipped with the latest firmware yes: M3B102

As for HGIG I don't know enough about it to give an answer. Enabling that Source Tone Map setting is absolutely mandatory with the current firmware though, especially if you want to use HDR 1000. This requires you to select console mode and you loose access to the other presets in SDR mode. Good thing though is that even in console mode you can adjust Gamma and RGB colors, so its really just another preset mode. I kind of hope that they'll release a firmware revision that decouple the Source Tone Map option from the console mode. So far, I don't see any downside leaving it in console mode; I prefer to set the monitor once and never touch those menu again! (While writing this and playing with the OSD I noticed that the preset you select before switching to console mode has an impact on brightness; having the screen in creator mode vs standards prior to switching to console mode does not process the brightness in the same way once in console mode. Still a lot to learn about this screen!)

Too my eye, and according to the calibration sheet, my screen had a bit too much red, so I just reduced the R to 98% in console mode and it looks perfect. I haven't read anything about its advance calibration capabilities. I've never done that myself so I wouldn't know where to look to answer you. Does it have something to do with DDC/CI option ? If so then the option is in the OSD menu and on by default. The RGB controls in the OSD are a lot more advance then what was on the DW. As mentioned I was able to change RGB and Gamma in console mode. You can do more using the Custom Colors preset with Gain, Offset, Hue and Saturation.

As for 10bit at 150Hz, I tried it yesterday night and it did work. I have no idea if there are downsides to use CVT-RB timing though. Increased latency seems to be the most likely side effect given the pixel clock is lower, from 1020 MHz to 835 MHz. Hopefully somebody can test this extensively. With some custom timing we may be able to get it all the way to 165Hz 10bits. It might be possible to OC the monitor to 175hz as well, the panel can certainly do it considering the DW, not sure its worth the hassle or even beneficial though for 10 Hz.
 
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Fleat

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Though I'd give you an answer on that one since I received the DWF today. The fan is not audible, at all. If I put me ear right on top of the screen louvers and align it with where I think the fan is, I can hear a very faint noise; I'm not even sure if it's from the monitor fan or just noise reflection from my computer fans (which is under my desk). If I turn off the computer and isolate the monitor noise, its so faint that the only way to hear it is to put your ear right on top of louvers. It's completely silent to my ears at normal viewing distance. So there you go.
On the DW, the fan noise ramps up the longer you have light colored content on the screen. For example, when I am working I often have a google doc window snapped to each side or a google doc + Jira + an ide. This will eventually cause the monitor to reach obnoxious levels but it starts off quiet. I would appreciate it if someone can validate a similar scenario to that.
 

Draver

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On the DW, the fan noise ramps up the longer you have light colored content on the screen. For example, when I am working I often have a google doc window snapped to each side or a google doc + Jira + an ide. This will eventually cause the monitor to reach obnoxious levels but it starts off quiet. I would appreciate it if someone can validate a similar scenario to that.
Would keeping a white coloured excel sheet open on the entire screen do the trick ? How long does it take to reach obnoxious levels ? I can let it sit for an hour and see what happens. DWF in SDR mode, brightness at 50%.
 
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Fleat

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Would keeping a white coloured excel sheet open on the entire screen do the trick ? How long does it take to reach obnoxious levels ? I can let it sit for an hour and see what happens. DWF in SDR mode, brightness at 50%.
Yes, that should definitely do it. If you wouldn't mind I would greatly appreciate you testing that out. If the fan noise is appreciably better, I am pretty sure the DW goes back for the DWF.
 

Draver

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Yes, that should definitely do it. If you wouldn't mind I would greatly appreciate you testing that out. If the fan noise is appreciably better, I am pretty sure the DW goes back for the DWF.
Alright, I've let it sit for an hour with the white Excel page on. While I can feel the warmth coming off the top, the fan was still as quiet as an hour ago...until I started to write this post. The fan just did a quick ramp up for 2-3 seconds to its max rpm then quiet back down to its initial level. A minute or so later it started to run at a slightly faster continuous rpm. If I had to give a relative guess, initial rpm was at ~10% and after 1 hour of staying at ~10% it just ramped up to a continuous ~40%. The pitch at this rpm was not as unpleasant as what I remember the DW was when idle; it was hard to discern over my under desk PC fans. Closing the white page, and putting the screen back in full black mode (Black wallpaper, no icons, no taskbar), it took 17 minutes for the fan to come back down to its initial inaudible rpm.

I hope this answer all your questions! This is a worst case scenario of course but gives a good idea of how their rpm curve is setup. Note that my office temperature was around 21-22 Celcius.
 
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Hulk

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What size fan is in the monitor and is it really easy to get to it? I know when installing fans in a PC case, the larger the fan the less noise it makes. Is there anyway to retrofit a 200mm fan and uninstall the stock one? I put a Cooler Master MegaFlow 200mm Silent Fan under my router and it really is silent yet I can feel it pushing air. Even with my ear next to it I can barely hear it. I hooked it up to a USB port using a USB to 3/4-Pin PWM 5V USB Sleeved Fan Power Adapter Cable.
 

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Mchart

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The fan complaints still make no sense to me. I use the DW in long sessions and it never gets louder than my PC fans. It is absolutely nothing compared to the fan noise in the FALD gsync displays.
 

Hulk

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When you say you use the DW in long sessions, are they heavy gaming sessions with ULTRA presets or are you just browsing hardforum or writing in Word? Also I think it's fair to say some people have more sensitive hearing than others.
 
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