Philips BDM4037UW Review

Written by Antony Leather

May 18, 2017 // 11:36 p.m.

Tags: #4k #curved #curved-monitor #monitor #philips #philips-bdm4037uw-review

Philips Brilliance BDM4037UW Review

Manufacturer: Philips
UK price (as reviewed): £584.98 (inc VAT)
US price (as reviewed): $899.99 (ex tax)

With the addition of larger panels and ultra-wide models as well as curved screens, the high-end monitor marketplace is a crowded and varied one. There's usually choice enough to allow several options to be added to your shortlist whatever your resolution, but while opting for 4K can be achieved in something as small as a 24in monitor, there are clearly reasons to go for something larger. Philips has taken this to the extreme, though, as the Brilliance BDM4037UW sits at a massive 40".

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This immediately raises a few questions in terms of ergonomics. We've found using a 32" monitor to be slightly awkward on a standard PC desk due to the amount you need to move your head to pan from one side of the screen to another. It's also unlikely you'll want to sit too close to it, as both your field of view and the need to view a decent amount of action in games will be impacted on, yet you'll need to be at your desk if you're using a keyboard and mouse.

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So, bigger is not always better when it comes to monitors, at least when it comes to flexibility. You do, of course, get plenty of screen real estate, and as the panel is so huge there's little need to increase the size of icons or mess with Windows scaling settings. For many, your flatscreen TV may even be smaller than the BDM4037UW, which does emphasise that you should carefully consider anything above 32" when it comes to a PC monitor. You'll need a large desk and a good reason to opt for such a huge one.

At just under £600, this is clearly a lot of screen for your money considering 24"and 27" monitors only cost a few hundred pounds less. Apart from the fact you get a gorgeous-looking curved screen, things are decidedly basic, though, with few if any of the modern features we're used to on premium screens these days. There's no variable refresh rate, so it's a no for G-Sync or FreeSync support. There's also next to no adjustment. We usually say that height adjustment is particularly important to ensure good posture, but you don't even get that here, with Philips clearly relying on the BDM4037UW's size to get it level with your eyeballs. There's also no swivel or pivot either, which does make fine adjustments quite tricky.

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The stand is sturdy enough, with a bunch of rubber pads on the underside, although we do worry a hefty knock could send it tumbling backwards. Then again, it's unlikely to be placed anywhere near the edge of a desk due to its size. Round the back is a pair of HDMI ports plus the same for DisplayPorts and, somewhat weirdly, a VGA port too. Given its size, there's clearly no need for an external power adaptor, although for some reason Philips has gone with a three-pin C5 cloverleaf type power cable instead of the more popular kettle lead.

You also get four USB 3.0 ports as well as onboard speaker output and audio in mini-jacks. It's unlikely you'll want to use the audio ports for the built-in speakers, though, as they were dire - nothing new in the world of monitors. Also round the rear of the monitor is the single OSD control stick. Given the monitor is likely to be a fair way from you, buttons on the bezel may have been a better idea. It also doesn't feel particularly sturdy. The menu is very simple, with fewer options than we're used to, but there are options to control brightness and contrast plus the ability to enable picture-in-picture and picture-by-picture modes.

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Speaking of build quality, there are some issues with the BDM4037UW. The bezel is fairly thick, which does impact on aesthetics of this otherwise attractive screen, but the bezel itself is quite flimsy, and we found several areas that exhibited a lot of flex and even lifted away with very little force. In terms of core specifications, the BDM4037UW sports a VA panel rather than IPS, with a claimed brightness of 300cd/m2 and a 4ms grey-to-grey response time.

Specifications

  • Screen size: 40"
  • Curved: Yes
  • Panel technology: VA
  • Resolution: 3,840 x 2,160
  • Aspect ratio: 16:9
  • Maximum refresh rate: 60Hz
  • Variable refresh rate: No
  • Brightness: 300cd/m2
  • Contrast ratio: 4,000:1
  • Response time: 4ms grey-to-grey
  • Connectors: 2 x DisplayPort, 1 x HDMI 1.4, 1 x HDMI 2.0
  • USB: 4 x USB 3.0
  • VESA wall-mount: Yes, 100 x 100
  • Adjustments: Tilt
  • Speakers: Yes
  • Dimensions (mm, w x d x h): 909 x 247 x 643

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