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Reviewed on Oct 17, 2019

Dell S3220DGF MONITOR REVIEW

Usage Ratings - Version 1.0
7.7
Mixed Usage
7.3
Office
8.3
Gaming
7.6
Multimedia
7.6
Media Creation
7.2
HDR Gaming
Size : 32"
Resolution : 2560x1440
Refresh Rate : 144 Hz
LCD Type
:
VA
Variable Refresh Rate
:
FreeSync

The Dell S3220DGF is a good 1440p curved gaming monitor. It has decent picture quality, a fast response time, and exceptionally low input lag for a responsive gaming experience. It displays deep blacks in a dark room, and thanks to its wide color gamut and decent HDR peak brightness it can display HDR content with vivid colors and highlights that pop. It has a very fast refresh rate and supports FreeSync for nearly tear-free gaming. It can get decently bright, and thanks to its good reflection handling you can place it in a fairly bright room without issues. Unfortunately, the viewing angles are poor, just like most VA panel monitors.

Test Results
Design 8.0
Picture Quality 7.0
Motion 8.9
Inputs 9.1
Pros
  • Very low input lag.
  • Excellent gray uniformity.
Cons
  • Image degrades when viewed from the side.

Check Price

32" Dell S3220DGF
Unavailable
Amazon.com
8.0

Design

Curved : Yes
Curve radius : 1800R
Weight (without stand)
:
16.8 lbs (7.6 kg)
Weight (with stand)
:
24.1 lbs (10.9 kg)

The Dell S3220DGF has a good design overall. It has a curved screen and a stand that supports it well without having a large footprint to get in the way. The overall build quality is good and the entire construction feels very sturdy with very little wobble. The ergonomics of the stand are decent and will allow you to position the monitor comfortably with ease.

Stand
Width
:
12.6" (32.0 cm)
Depth
:
10.1" (25.7 cm)

The Dell S3220DGF's stand looks like most typical Dell stands and won't get in the way. It supports the monitor well and prevents most wobble.

6.5 Ergonomics
Height Adjustment
:
5.4" (13.7 cm)
Switch portrait/landscape : No
Swivel Range : -30° to 30°
Tilt Range : -20° to 5°

Decent ergonomics for the Dell S3220DGF. You can easily place it in a comfortable position. Unfortunately, you can't turn it to portrait mode, although it's unlikely that you'll want to do so given that this is a large curved monitor.

Back
Wall Mount : VESA 100x100

The back of the monitor is plain. There's an opening at the back where all the ports are. Cable management is serviced through a hole in the pole of the stand.

Borders
Borders
:
1.1" (2.8 cm)

The borders are a little thick and do not favor multi-monitor setup. However, it's unlikely that they'll bother you in normal use.

Thickness
Thickness (with stand)
:
7.2" (18.3 cm)
Thickness (without stand)
:
3.2" (8.1 cm)

The overall thickness of the monitor doesn't vary much despite the slightly tilted stand. However, as with most curved monitors, if you wall-mount it, it'll stick out a little.

7.5 Build Quality

The S3220DGF has a good build quality. The entire construction is heavy and feels sturdy with no gaps or loose ends. The stand provides good support and prevents most wobble.

7.0

Picture Quality

The Dell S3220DGF has decent overall picture quality. It has a VA panel and displays deep uniform blacks in a dark room even though there's no local dimming support. This, however, is done at the expense of poor viewing angles, which isn't great if you often work in groups. It gets decently bright and you can place it in fairly bright rooms without issue thanks to its good reflection handling. It has a wide color gamut, and when in HDR it displays vivid colors with highlights that pop. Finally, the monitor has excellent gray uniformity.

7.9 Contrast
Native Contrast
:
2953 : 1
Contrast with local dimming
:
N/A

The S3220DGF has a good contrast ratio. Thanks to its VA panel, blacks look deep in a dark room.

0 Local Dimming
Local Dimming
:
No
Backlight
:
Direct

The S3220DGF doesn't have a local dimming feature. The above video is provided for reference only.

7.4 SDR Peak Brightness
SDR Real Scene
:
284 cd/m²
SDR Peak 2% Window
:
292 cd/m²
SDR Peak 10% Window
:
292 cd/m²
SDR Peak 25% Window
:
293 cd/m²
SDR Peak 50% Window
:
293 cd/m²
SDR Peak 100% Window
:
293 cd/m²
SDR Sustained 2% Window
:
291 cd/m²
SDR Sustained 10% Window
:
292 cd/m²
SDR Sustained 25% Window
:
292 cd/m²
SDR Sustained 50% Window
:
293 cd/m²
SDR Sustained 100% Window
:
293 cd/m²
SDR ABL
:
0.000

The Dell S3220DGF has decent brightness. You shouldn't have issues placing this monitor in a fairly bright room, although you should avoid placing it in a very bright one. If you need a brighter screen, increasing the contrast results in a noticeably brighter, but less accurate image.

7.0 HDR Peak Brightness
HDR Real Scene
:
444 cd/m²
HDR Peak 2% Window
:
468 cd/m²
HDR Peak 10% Window
:
468 cd/m²
HDR Peak 25% Window
:
468 cd/m²
HDR Peak 50% Window
:
468 cd/m²
HDR Peak 100% Window
:
468 cd/m²
HDR Sustained 2% Window
:
460 cd/m²
HDR Sustained 10% Window
:
456 cd/m²
HDR Sustained 25% Window
:
457 cd/m²
HDR Sustained 50% Window
:
459 cd/m²
HDR Sustained 100% Window
:
461 cd/m²
HDR ABL
:
0.001

Decent HDR peak brightness for the Dell S3220DGF. When in HDR, the monitor displays bright highlights, offering you a good HDR gaming experience.

4.3 Horizontal Viewing Angle
Color Shift from Left
:
24 °
Color Shift from Right
:
27 °
Brightness from Left
:
32 °
Brightness from Right
:
37 °
Black Level from Left
:
10 °
Black Level from Right
:
13 °
Curve Radius : 1800 R

Poor horizontal viewing angles on the Dell S3220DGF. This isn't a good monitor to share your work with a colleague or for co-op gaming. Those who view the monitor from the side won't have as accurate an image as those sitting straight in front.

4.6 Vertical Viewing Angle
Color Shift from Below
:
25 °
Color Shift from Above
:
24 °
Brightness from Below
:
37 °
Brightness from Above
:
35 °
Black Level from Below
:
6 °
Black Level from Above
:
5 °

This monitor's vertical viewing angles are poor, as expected from most VA panel monitors. Even at eye-level, you might notice inaccuracies at the top and bottom of the screen depending on how far you are from the monitor. This might be an issue at workplaces if you want to show your work to someone standing next to you.

8.9 Gray Uniformity
50% Std. Dev.
:
2.092 %
50% DSE
:
0.102 %
5% Std. Dev.
:
0.721 %
5% DSE
:
0.071 %

Excellent gray uniformity, among the best we've ever measured and in the same ballpark as the Samsung CF398. There are almost no signs of dirty screen effect in either the bright or in the darker shades.

6.6 Black Uniformity
Native Std. Dev.
:
1.580 %
Std. Dev. w/ L.D.
:
N/A

The Dell S3220DGF has decent black uniformity. There's some slight blooming at the corners and around the edges, but it's almost impossible to notice in real content.

6.8 Pre Calibration
Picture Mode
:
Custom Color
Luminance
:
122 cd/m²
Luminance Settings
:
75
Contrast Setting
:
75
RGB controls
:
100-100-100
Color Temperature
:
5971 K
White Balance dE
:
3.63
Color dE
:
3.61
Gamma
:
2.16

The pre-calibration color accuracy of the S3220DGF is decent. Most enthusiasts will spot some inaccuracies in both the grays and the colors. Gamma doesn't follow the curve closely and as a result, dark scenes are crushed while bright scenes are even brighter than they should be.

9.6 Post Calibration
Picture Mode
:
Custom Color
Luminance
:
100 cd/m²
Luminance Settings
:
35
Contrast Setting
:
70
RGB Controls
:
93-94-98
Color Temperature
:
6486 K
White Balance dE
:
0.50
Color dE
:
0.55
Gamma
:
2.19

The Dell S3220DGF has remarkable accuracy after calibration. Most inaccuracies are corrected, and even enthusiasts won't be able to spot any remaining ones, except maybe in the blues. Gamma follows the target curve well, and the color temperature is very close to the target of 6500K.

You can download our ICC profile calibration here. This is provided for reference only and shouldn't be used, as the calibration values vary per individual unit even for the same model due to manufacturing tolerances.

9.0 SDR Color Gamut
sRGB xy
:
98.1 %
Adobe RGB xy
:
81.3 %

s.RGB Picture Mode: custom color (calibrated)
Adobe RGB Picture Mode: custom color

Exceptional SDR color gamut for this monitor, very similar to the MSI Optix G27C. The standard sRGB color space is almost entirely covered, but the wider Adobe RGB color gamut, used mainly in professional applications, isn't covered as well.

9.4 SDR Color Volume
sRGB in ICtCp
:
99.0 %
Adobe RGB in ICtCp
:
88.1 %

s.RGB Picture Mode: custom color
Adobe RGB Picture Mode: custom color

Excellent SDR color volume. The monitor's good contrast ratio helps it display its excellent s.RGB gamut at a large range of brightnesses. Its Adobe RGB volume is still excellent, but limited by the coverage of the Adobe RGB color gamut.

7.2 HDR Color Gamut
Wide Color Gamut
:
Yes
DCI P3 xy
:
79.4 %
Rec. 2020 xy
:
64.0 %

DCI P3 Picture Mode: HDR Standerd
Rec. 2020 Picture Mode: HDR standard

Decent HDR color gamut. It has good coverage of the DCI P3 color space, which is used by most current HDR content. Unfortunately, the coverage of the wider Rec. 2020 color space is mediocre. It's worth noting, though, that only a few monitors have good coverage of Rec. 2020.

5.9 HDR Color Volume
DCI-P3 in ICtCp
:
67.8 %
Rec. 2020 in ICtCp
:
50.6 %

DCI P3 Picture Mode: HDR Standard
Rec. 2020 Picture Mode: HDR standard

Disappointing HDR color volume. Limited by its color gamut, the S3220DGF can't display the full range of colors. The saturated colors, in particular, aren't as bright as pure white.

10 Image Retention
IR after 0 min recovery
:
0.00 %
IR after 2 min recovery
:
0.00 %
IR after 4 min recovery
:
0.00 %
IR after 6 min recovery
:
0.00 %
IR after 8 min recovery
:
0.00 %
IR after 10 min recovery
:
0.00 %

There are no signs of temporary image retention on the Dell S3220DGF, even immediately after displaying our high-contrast, static test image for 10 minutes.

9.8 Gradient
Color Depth
:
10 Bit

This monitor has excellent gradient handling. There are very faint signs of banding in the darker colors, but this isn't noticeable in real content.

10 Color Bleed
Pixel row error
:
0.003 %
Pixel column error
:
0.002 %

There are no signs of color bleed on this monitor.

8.0 Reflections

The Dell S3220DGF has impressive reflection handling. Just like the Samsung CHG70 or the HP 27Q, you can easily place it in a bright room without worrying about getting distracted by reflections. Just like most curved monitors, reflections are smeared across the screen, and although this decreases their intensity, it can be distracting in certain cases.

8.9

Motion

The Dell S3220DGF is flicker-free and has a very fast response time that allows it to display fast-moving content with only a small blur trail. It supports the FreeSync variable refresh rate technology for a wide range of frequencies, and offers a nearly tear-free gaming experience.

8.7 Motion Blur
80% Response Time
:
5.4 ms
100% Response Time
:
12.5 ms
Best Overdrive Setting
:
Super Fast

Response Tim Setting Response Time Chart Motion Blur Photo
Fast Chart Photo
Super Fast Chart Photo
Extreme Chart Photo

The Dell S3220DGF has a very fast response time, although not as fast as other 144Hz monitors. Fast-moving content is displayed with only minimal blur trail. We suggest that you set the Response Time to 'Super Fast', as it's the option that combines fast response time and little overshoot as you can see in the graphs. We measured the response time at the native refresh rate of 144Hz.

7.5 Image Flicker
Flicker-free : Yes
PWM Dimming Frequency
:
0 Hz
Black Frame Insertion (BFI)
:
No
BFI Maximum Frequency
:
N/A
BFI Minimum Frequency
:
N/A

The Dell S3220DGF is flicker-free at all brightness levels, which is great. Unfortunately, there's no black frame insertion option to help make motion appear clearer.

9.2 Refresh Rate
Native
:
144 Hz
Factory Overclock
:
165 Hz
Variable Refresh Rate
:
FreeSync
G-SYNC Compatible
:
Yes
VRR Maximum
:
144 Hz
VRR Minimum
:
< 20 Hz
VRR Maximum With OC
:
165 Hz
VRR Supported Connectors : DisplayPort, HDMI

The monitor has a native refresh rate of 144Hz that can be easily overclocked, and supports FreeSync for a wide range of frequencies.

9.1

Inputs

The Dell S3220DGF has an exceptionally low input lag, and an excellent resolution and size that allows you to display more of your game on your screen.

9.6 Input Lag
Native Resolution
:
4.0 ms
Non-Native Res @ Native Refresh
:
N/A
Native Resolution @ 60 Hz
:
8.5 ms
Variable Refresh Rate
:
4.4 ms
10 bit HDR
:
6.1 ms
Black Frame Insertion (BFI)
:
N/A

This monitor has an extremely low input lag and delivers a very responsive gaming experience that will please even competitive gamers.

8.5 Resolution and Size
Native Resolution : 2560 x 1440
Aspect Ratio : 16:9
Megapixels : 3.7 MP
Pixel Density : 92 PPI
Screen Diagonal : 32.0 inches
Screen Area : 438 sq inches

This a fairly large monitor with good native resolution. You can display a lot of your work on the screen, avoiding having to scroll too often.

Inputs
Total Inputs
DisplayPort : 1 (DP 1.4)
Mini DisplayPort : No
HDMI : 2 (HDMI 2.0)
DVI : No
VGA : No
DisplayPort Out : No
USB : 2 (USB 3.0)
USB C : No
Analog Audio Out 3.5mm : 1
Microphone In 3.5mm : No
Digital Optical Audio Out : No
Analog Audio Out RCA : No
Power Supply : Internal

Features

This monitor has limited additional features that you can access through the menu. The controls are easy to reach and the OSD is easy to navigate.

Additional Features
Speakers
:
No
HDR10 : Yes
Multiple input display
:
No

Update 10/30/2019: The original text incorrectly listed a crosshair feature - this has been updated, as it is instead a display alignment feature.

There are a few additional features apart from the support of HDR10. Through the monitor's menu, you can enable a grid on the screen to help align multiple displays or a 'frame per second' counter to test your graphics card. You can also display a timer on the screen, which can be handy.

On-Screen Display (OSD)
Controls

The controls are located on the right side of the underside and are easy to use.

In The Box

  • User Manual
  • Power Cable
  • HDMI Cable
  • DisplayPort
  • USB-A-to-USB-B

Differences between Sizes and Variants

We tested the 32" Dell S3220DGF, which is the only size available.

If someone comes across a different type of panel or if their S3220DGF doesn't correspond to our review, let us know and we'll update the review. Note that some tests, such as gray uniformity, may vary between individual units.

The Dell S3220DGF we reviewed was manufactured in August 2019.

Compared to other Monitors

The Dell S3220DGF is a curved gaming monitor with a great gaming performance. It has a low input lag, supports FreeSync, and delivers a good performance in most uses, just like many other gaming monitors. See also our recommendations for the best gaming monitors, the best curved monitors, and the best 1440p monitors.

Samsung CHG70
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The Samsung CHG70 is slightly better than the Dell S3220DGF. The Samsung has an optional black frame insertion feature to help the appearance of motion, and a better ergonomic stand that allows you to place the monitor in a comfortable position with ease. The Dell, on the other hand, displays more uniform blacks, which is important when working in a dark room.

Dell Alienware AW3418DW
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The Dell Alienware AW3418DW and the Dell S3220DGF have different panel types, each with advantages and disadvantages. The Alienware has an IPS panel with wider viewing angles, which is great for co-op gaming, while the S3220DGF has better dark room performance thanks to its VA panel. The Alienware offers you more space to work on thanks to its larger screen size and better resolution, but the S3220DGF supports HDR, so you can enjoy the latest HDR games.

Dell S3219D
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The Dell S3220DGF is much better than the Dell S3219D. The S3220DGF has a much faster refresh rate and a lower input lag, which is great for gaming. The D3220 also supports HDR, and its more versatile stand allows you to place it in a comfortable position with ease.

ASUS ROG Swift PG348Q
SEE PRICE
Newegg.com

The ASUS ROG Swift PG348Q and the Dell S3220DGF have different panel types, each with advantages and disadvantages. The Asus has an IPS panel and maintains an accurate image for wider viewing angles, which is great if you do collaborative work. The Dell, on the other hand, has a VA panel that delivers deeper and more uniform blacks, which is great if you often game in a dark room. The Dell has a much faster refresh rate and supports HDR, whereas the ASUS is larger with a higher resolution that displays more of your work, minimizing scrolling.

7.7 Mixed Usage

This is a good monitor for mixed usage. It has a large resolution and size and can display much of your gaming arena or your work on the screen. It feels very responsive thanks to its low input lag, and the curved profile immerses you in the game. Unfortunately, the viewing angles are poor and won't allow you to work well in groups.

7.3 Office

The Dell S3220DGF is a decent monitor for office use. It has a large resolution and size that allows you to display more of your work, minimizing the need to scroll. Unfortunately, viewing angles are poor and the monitor doesn't favor collaborative work. It's suitable for a fairly bright office, as it'll fight glare and handle reflections well. The stand allows you to adjust it comfortably with ease.

8.3 Gaming

This is an impressive monitor for gaming. It has a very low input lag for a responsive gaming experience, and a lot of real estate to display more of your game. Fast-moving content is crisp thanks to the fast response time, and motion looks smooth thanks to the fast refresh rate. Finally, It supports FreeSync VRR for nearly tear-free gaming.

7.6 Multimedia

The D3220DGF is a good monitor for consuming multimedia. It has a large size and an excellent resolution that allows it to display most content at native resolution. It's very responsive thanks to its low input lag and has excellent gray uniformity, but the viewing angles are poor, just like most VA panel monitors.

7.6 Media Creation

The Dell is a good monitor for those who want to use it for media creation. It has a large resolution and good amount of real estate, so you can display most of your work's details. The good ergonomics allow you to adjust it to a comfortable working position, and the low input lag ensures a responsive experience. Unfortunately, the viewing angles are bad and the image degrades when viewed from the side.

7.2 HDR Gaming

This is a decent monitor for HDR gaming. It has good dark room performance, can get decently bright in HDR, and can display your HDR games with vivid colors thanks to its wide color gamut. It has a curved profile, a very low input lag, and a fast response time ensuring an immersive and responsive HDR gaming experience.

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