HP Envy 34c Media Display
HP has used the availability of curved panels to produce a premium model in their Envy-line. This Envy 34c is called the Media Display, presumably because there are two huge, visible speakers on both sides of the screen. Unfortunately they look better than they sound. The use of these speakers also means that the screen is about 4 inches wider than every other screen we tested. The slightly glossy S-PVA-panel rests on a beautiful aluminum base, but can only tilt. A VESA-mount is not present, so you are unable to mount the panel on a more ergonomical base. Even so, the monitor does look amazing. HP added two HDMI-inputs, DisplayPort and a USB hub; all connections are on the back and point directly out. The controls for the comprehensive on-screen menu are also positioned there, but do not work as well as the provided remote. HP also provides every cable necessary.
The equipment of the Envy 34c leaves little to be desired; the test results are also mostly positive. HP calibrates the screen straight out of the factory and that means there are some solid greyscale - and colour deviation values. The colour temperature is a little bit high, but only with a high brightness there is a blue cast. Unfortunately there is also a clear moving in brightness and colour fidelity as soon as you are not directly in front of the screen.
Thanks to the panel the contrast is excellent. The gamma is more than solid and HP does not have to be ashamed of the response times. What falls short is the input lag, which happens to be the highest of the tested models. The HP also has the highest power consumption. These downsides, combined with the relatively high price of an average of 700 pounds, or 1000 dollars, means we would not recommend the Envy 34c as the best monitor.