Dell U2713HM Design, OSD, and Specs

The U2713HM is an LED-backlit display that offers the sRGB colorspace and a resolution of 2560x1440. It uses an IPS panel that is 8-bit, but unlike the U2711 doesn’t support AFRC for simulated 10-bit color. Like all Dell monitors I have seen so far, it has a base that supports height, tilt, pivot, and swivel adjustments. Installation is a snap with Dell’s standard mounting system where you just slip the monitor onto the stand and it clicks into place. The front is nice and clean, lacking any stickers or text aside from the Dell logo, and all the OSD controls are handled by a set of unlabeled buttons on the right-hand side.

I have to complement Dell on the packaging for this monitor as well. Totally forgoing Styrofoam and only using a simple cardboard design, similar to recent Sony Blu-ray players, it both keeps the display safe and doesn’t fall apart, making it easy to reuse the packaging later. If you aren’t keeping the packaging, it also makes recycling the included materials much easier. I appreciate both the eco-friendliness and the ease of removing the monitor from the box. Dell thankfully puts a page detailing the monitor setup at the very top of the box, something other vendors would be wise to start doing.

Dell's U2713HM also offers 2x USB 3.0 ports on the side, and two more on panel with the video connections. The panel offers DisplayPort 1.2, VGA, DVI, and HDMI inputs, as well as a connection for Dell’s soundbar speaker. The PSU is integrated into the display so there is a standard 3-prong IEC socket rounding out the connections. Nothing on the U2713HM is flashy or groundbreaking; it's just very utilitarian. It’s not going to stand out in a way that makes you remember it at first glance, but after using so many other displays I also find there isn’t anything poorly designed that stands out either. Overall the design of the Dell U2713HM is clean and well done.

I have always given Dell high marks for their OSD and I will continue to do so here. With four buttons to control it, none of which are labeled, you would think it might be tricky but it is not. With clear on-screen labels and descriptions of the controls, as well as avoiding the common mistake of having keys labeled with arrows control menus that move the other direction, Dell does a good job here of making it easy to navigate and control. The menu options are clear, with your standard preset modes, brightness and contrast, input selection, and more display settings. One missing item is an option for an overdrive or gaming mode to improve pixel response, though in practice we haven't seen major improvements from such modes on other displays. Another missing feature is the ability to automatically select an input, which makes using it with multiple devices a little harder. The OSD remains essentially unchanged from previous Dell displays, but they have no reason to go back and reinvent it either.

Viewing angles are good for an IPS as we expect them to be. There is a light coating of anti-glare, but nothing that I find to be objectionable or that caused issues with the image for me. Unless you're trying to look at the U2713HM from a 170 degree angle or so, you shouldn't have any issues viewing it and seeing color or contrast shifts in normal use.

Dell U2713HM
Video Inputs DisplayPort 1.2, DL-DVI, HDMI, Dsub
Panel Type IPS
Pixel Pitch 0.23mm
Colors 16.7 Million
Brightness 350 Nits
Contrast Ratio 1000:1
Response Time 8ms GTG
Viewable Size 27"
Resolution 2560x1440
Viewing Angle 178/178 Horizontal/Vertical
Backlight LED
Power Consumption (operation) 42W Typical
Power Consumption (standby) 0.5W
Screen Treatment Light Anti-Glare coating
Height-Adjustable Yes, 4.5" of range
Tilt Yes
Pivot Yes
Swivel Yes
VESA Wall Mounting Yes, 100mm
Dimensions w/ Base (WxHxD) 25.17" x 7.89" x 16.70"
Weight 12.44 lbs. without stand
Additional Features USB 3.0 hub (4 port), Dell Soundbar Power Connector
Limited Warranty 3 years
Accessories DVI Cable, VGA Cable, USB Cable
Price $799

The design and user interface of the Dell U2713HM seem to be up to the task, but how does it perform relative to other 27" models that have recently come through for testing?

Dell U2713HM Brightness and Contrast
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  • cheinonen - Thursday, October 4, 2012 - link

    The results are almost always the last 12 displays tested, as older ones rotate out of the spreadsheet and newer models rotate in. I'll try to grab the U2711 numbers for some of those, but the lag testing has totally changed since that was done, so the numbers might not be as accurate as they are now.
  • JNo - Thursday, October 4, 2012 - link

    I agree with EnzoFX. Because this is Dell who update their monitor lines every couple of years, a comparison with their previous models is important to see what improvements they've been able to make (if any) and also to see if it's worth aiming for the previous model if its still 'good enough' but cheaper.

    Comparison with the U2711 is also interesting because uses CCFL (usually wider gamut) as opposed to WLED and will continue to be sold alongside the U2713HM.

    We compare the iphone 5 with the 4S and the galaxy S3 with the S2 and the 7970 with the 6970 so why not the same with the monitor lines?
  • ChuckDriver - Thursday, October 4, 2012 - link

    While it's nice to see Dell dropping the price below the $1,000 mark, I lost interest in this article when I saw that the price was still over twice that of a Korean 27" IPS LCD monitor off of eBay. It is true that you are rolling the dice when you purchase one, are getting fewer features, and poorly translated documentation but at that large of a difference, I'll go for it. I've also heard that MicroCenter is offering these Korean 27" IPS monitors in their stores, with the return policy that you'd expect from a local store, so I may stop inside the next time I'm near one of their stores and pick one up.
  • mevans336 - Thursday, October 4, 2012 - link

    Dell currently has this one sale for $559 USD.
  • Despoiler - Thursday, October 4, 2012 - link

    Ahh yah in Australia.
  • peterfares - Thursday, October 4, 2012 - link

    Dell Monitors in Australia are super cheap. I don't expect this monitor to drop much below $700 in the United States from the Dell website. You can get a Korean Catleap or Yamakasi for $290 shipped using fedex express 2 day from Korea. Or if you go to Microcenter they have the $400 models with extra ports and a scalar for $400 + tax.
  • 10101010 - Thursday, October 4, 2012 - link

    It'd be quite useful if there was a standardized test for optical distortion. The last Dell U2711 I tried had really bad distortion from the anti-glare coating. I ended up going with the Apple 27" display even though it is something of a pain to use with Windows 7. It is amazing to see the quality of ClearType without the distortion of today's low quality anti-glare coatings. I'd have to think there would be some tests that could be developed to test optical distortion that would give readers an objective measure of the quality of the anti-glare coatings in common use today.

    I've read that there are some Korean companies offering 27" displays that have no front glass and no AG coatings. That might be ideal for optical quality, but cleaning the screen would be perilous.

    It'd be great if Dell, HP, or another company would offer a quality 27" display without an anti-glare coating. Anyone know of a non-Apple 27" 2560x1440 display that has a glass panel but no anti-glare coating and has a no bad pixel warranty?
  • ComputerGuy2006 - Thursday, October 4, 2012 - link

    yeah I use the u2711, the antiglare coating is ridiculous. To this day I still see the 'sandy' look, its easily visible and obvious from the white textbox im typing this message from.

    Who knows what dell was thinking. Id prefer 0 anti glare over this any day of the week.
  • piroroadkill - Thursday, October 4, 2012 - link

    It's actually on the LG panels, it's not Dell that applies it.
    Honestly, I think it's absolutely fine, and I prefer it to glossy by far.
  • Old_Fogie_Late_Bloomer - Thursday, October 4, 2012 - link

    I've been keeping an eye on 27" monitors for a while. I want a wide-gamut one, but for a long time all the complaining about the anti-glare coating held me back from making a purchase because otherwise the U2711 was the obvious best choice for me.

    Then one day I had a flash and did a search on the U2410, which I've been using for years, and found that the same complaint was being leveled against it too. I was basically like, "WHAT!? THIS is what you people have been b------- about!?"

    I mean, don't get me wrong, the coating is a little aggressive. Do I mind how it looks? Heck no. Have I started watching LogicBuy for U2711 sales? Yup, I sure have.

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