Asus are taking orders for 4K monitors, if you have $3,500 handy

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Got three and a half thousand bucks weighing down your coin purse? There are lots of ways to lose it. Charitable contribution, perhaps, treating loved ones, paying off debts OR, if you want a sharp wall-sized flatpanel that will set your GPU on fire, you could put in a pre-order one of Asus' ginormous PQ3210 monitors.

As will probably be the way with 4K monitors for the foreseeable, the Asus PQ321Q (opens in new tab) is a pro-level 10-bit screen. That professional positioning will likely keep prices higher for 4K monitors than you'll see in larger 4K TVs. You can already pick up - admittedly probably pretty weak - 4K TVs for around $1,200 (opens in new tab) , for example.

But this one is based on Sharp's IGZO (opens in new tab) (Indium Gallium Zinc Oxide) panel, which allows for the smaller pixels needed to squeeze around 8.3 million of them into this 31.5-inch display. It offers a UHD 4K native resolution of 3840 x 2160, but with a comparatively slow 8ms gray-to-gray response time.

Asus is also putting together a 39-inch version of the monitor, though sitting in front of that on your desktop might well melt the retinas off the back of your eyeballs. Okay, not quite, but really, 32-inch on the desktop is more than enough to be going on with.

So, sell that kidney you probably don't need and head over to Amazon to put in your order for your 32-inch panel (opens in new tab) , then sell another organ to sort out a graphics array that will actually let you run games at the UHD über resolution.

Given that only just over 1% of people in the Steam hardware survey are running a primary screen with a resolution of 2560x1440 or above it's obviously going to be a while before normal gamers start using anything near 4K for their games. But with the next-gen consoles all making 4K a buzzword of theirs, I wouldn't be surprised if things start to follow the same trends as 1080p resolutions did after the last generation of consoles launched.

So yeah, only another five years to wait for widespread adoption, people!

I am in the process of sweet-talking our friends at Asus to let me have a play with one when they arrive in the UK, then I'll be able to figure out which graphics card setup you'd need right now to game happily at that native 4K res.

Dave James

Dave has been gaming since the days of Zaxxon and Lady Bug on the Colecovision, and code books for the Commodore Vic 20 (Death Race 2000!). He built his first gaming PC at the tender age of 16, and finally finished bug-fixing the Cyrix-based system around a year later. When he dropped it out of the window. He first started writing for Official PlayStation Magazine and Xbox World many decades ago, then moved onto PC Format full-time, then PC Gamer, TechRadar, and T3 among others. Now he's back, writing about the nightmarish graphics card market, CPUs with more cores than sense, gaming laptops hotter than the sun, and SSDs more capacious than a Cybertruck.