Today at Gamescom, Dell has officially launched its new flagship OLED gaming monitor, the Alienware 55. First demonstrated back at Computex, the display uses a 4K OLED panel featuring a 120 Hz refresh rate, making it among the fastest 4K monitors available. The Alienware 55 supports AMD’s FreeSync variable refresh rate technology, which is what sets the monitor apart from OLED UHDTVs, yet not in its HDR implementation.

The Alienware 55 is based on a 55-inch OLED panel featuring a 3840x2160 resolution, 400 nits peak brightness, a 130,000:1 contrast ration, a 0.5 ms gray to gray response time, as well as a 120 Hz maximum refresh rate. The screen can reproduce 98.5% of the DCI-P3 color gamut, which is comparable to accuracy of professional LCD displays. The monitor also has an anti-reflective coating with 2H hardness for additional clarity when used in bright days.

The key feature set of the Alienware 55 is a combination of its technologies as well as its size. OLED computer displays are rare in general, and this one is the industry’s first OLED monitors for gamers. The product is not without caveats though: despite the use of OLED technoloy, this is not an HDR monitor. In fact, Dell says nothing about Alienware’s 55-incher supporting HDR10 or Dolby Vision transports; so regardless of what the panel can do, it would appear that the monitor itself doesn't support any HDR input formats.

Alienware 55 (AW5520QF) Display Specifications
Panel 55-inch OLED
Resolution 3840 × 2160
Refresh Rate 120 Hz
Response Time 0.5 ms gray-to-gray
Brightness Peal: 400 cd/m²
Contrast 130,000:1
Viewing Angles 120°/120° horizontal/vertical
Color Saturation 98.5% DCI-P3
Display Colors 1.07 billion
3D-LUT ? bits
Pixel Pitch 0.3108 mm²
Pixel Density 81 PPI
Anti-Glare Coating 2H
Inputs 1 × DP 1.4
4 × HDMI 2.0
USB Hub Quad-port USB 3.1 Gen 1 hub
Audio 2 × 14 W speakers
3.5-mm mini jack
Mechanical Design Chassis Colors: black, metallic,
AlienFX RGB lighting
Power Consumption Idle 0.3 W
Active 100 W ~ 390 W

The Alienware 55 comes with three HDMI 2.0 inputs as well as one DisplayPort 1.4 connector, with the latter being the second oddity in today's announcement. With full 4:4:4/RGB color, DisplayPort 1.2 is limited to 60Hz; you need DisplayPort 1.4 for 4K@120Hz with 8bpc color. So for what Dell is doing, there's an error in the specifications or compromise somewhere. Either DisplayPort 1.2 is right and they're doing something akin to 4:2:2 choma subsampling to make 120Hz work, or this is not a true 120Hz monitor at all – and instead it's a 60Hz monitor with black frame insertion, a common tactic for TVs. At this point we're not sure which it is, and we've reached out to Dell for clarification.

Update: Dell has gotten back to us, confirming that their original spec sheet was wrong, and that the monitor comes with DisplayPort 1.4 rather than 1.2. So the display does in fact have enough bandwidth for 4K@120Hz with 8bpc color.

Moving on, the display has a quad-port USB 3.1 Gen 1 hub, a headphone output, and an S/PDIF line out. When it comes to audio, the display has two 14 W speakers that were co-designed with Wave Maxx Audio.

Just like other large displays, the Alienware 55 comes with a remote control to adjust brightness, regulate audio and perform other operations.

Dell will start sales of the Alienware 55 display starting September 30 at $3,999.99.

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Source: Dell

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  • quiksilvr - Monday, August 19, 2019 - link

    *presses NUT button*
  • Devo2007 - Monday, August 19, 2019 - link


    (Austin's NUT button would probably get worn out if this appeared on the table)
  • B3an - Tuesday, August 20, 2019 - link

    This is nothing special. We already have better options...

    LG's 4K OLED TV range (2019) can do 120hz, and unlike this monitor they have HDMI 2.1 and HDR - supporting both HDR10 and Dolby Vision. They also support variable refresh rates (freesync) and can go much brighter than this monitor. You get the same DCI-P3 performance too (98 - 99%).

    So why bother with this monitor? It's inferior. We now have TV's that perform better as monitors than actual monitors. This is also probably using the same LG OLED panel that's used in LG's TV's. So you're much better off having an actual LG TV as a monitor instead. There might be no GPU's with HDMI 2.1 (yet) but once they arrive you'll have 4K HDR @ 120hz. So unless this Dell/Alienware monitor is way cheaper i don't see any point in it.

    And next year we'll see loads more TV's with HDMI 2.1 and 4K HDR @ 120hz + VRR/freesync.
  • drgigolo - Tuesday, August 20, 2019 - link

    Welp. The C9 doesn't support Freesync as such, but VRR of the HDMI 2.1 standard. If nvidia and AMD chooses to support VRR on any of their current GPU's is unlikely. Probably, we will have to wait for new GPU's that support HDMI 2.1 fully, before we can get VRR on the C9.
  • remosito - Tuesday, August 20, 2019 - link

    i buy my monitors to last me 5+ years. Next year those lg with hdmi 2.1 will be 1500 and gpus will have hdmi 2.1.

    Basically I'll be able to get 4k@120 with 10bpc, vrr, hdr, dolby vision and save 2500 bucks....

    This monitor is a truly terrible value proposition.
  • drgigolo - Tuesday, August 20, 2019 - link

    I don't disagree with you, but, if someone wishes to have a 4K 55" OLED display to use with their PC today, or in the very near future to run 120Hz 4K, you still can't do that.
  • patel21 - Tuesday, August 20, 2019 - link

    You can still do this with LG monitor, it just lacks Freesync, that's it.
    So if you are using Nvidia GPU or don't value Freesync at $2000, LG is indeed the best option.
  • patel21 - Tuesday, August 20, 2019 - link

    *LG monitor ==> LG TV.
  • lilkwarrior - Wednesday, August 21, 2019 - link

    I completely concur, especially with Display 1.4 to HDMI 2.1 converters being imminent (covered by this very site last month).

    The marketing & researchers associated with this product needs to be evaluated for malpractice thinking they can charge what they're charging without HDR (not even HDR10? WTF) & HDMI 2.1 when the perception is pretty obvious that it has a panel more or less like the LG C9 which has both those things yet it's 2.6 times more.

    It's just seems like pure sabotage or being forced to release this monitor this quarter no matter what when they can add those things w/ a next year release instead. Even if they have plans of a later SKU, this seems like a waste of resources until at minimum being DisplayHDR TrueBlack 500 certified, Dolby Vision HDR (ideally HDR10+), & HDMI 2.1.

    HDR 2.1 & HDR should have been MINIMUM requirements for this product. Xbox Scarlett & PS5 PR even gave them a freaking layout to include HDMI 2.1 & HDR to meet their 4K@120hz target.

    Never thought a product I was excited about would make me this disappointed & legit sad it got downgraded. I'm concerrned this may push back OLED gaming monitor market back unnecessarily due to the unanimously poor downgrade decisions this OLED monitor.

    Some skeptics will point that this monitor failed, but the reality is it seems the management of this product (given its original method) failed it. This definitely ruined my Q4.

    I can't justify a C9 either since it now just makes sense to wait for monitors to incorporate USB4 & Displayport 2.0. This monitor was supposed to be the best Displayport 1.4 4K Gaming monitor of all-time and just blew it.

    With the FALD 4K monitors & BFGD monitors being horribly over-priced to a OLED HDMI 2.1 LG C9 TV or a Panasonic OLED tv too, never thought I'd say this, but buying a OLED TV for a gaming monitor seems much more sensible for 4K gaming at this point.

    The PC monitor businesses managing 4K variants seems to be managed by people who don't seem to understand their audience. Their decisions have been indefensibly moronic.
  • lilkwarrior - Wednesday, August 21, 2019 - link

    Microsoft (Xbox Scarlett) & Sony (PS5) gave them a lay-up informing the press that their consoles target & support 4K@120hz. Like the Xbox One X today, they primarily intend to do that via HDMI 2.1

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