Since posting that Id ordered a 3007fpw in another thread Ive had several requests to post a review concussed purely on the two things that are of most importance to gamers, being gaming performance and DVD/movie/media playback. Fortunately, these are the precise reasons behind my purchase of the panel. Im not including pictures in this review at the moment. There is the existing holy crap this panel is big thread with over 50 pages containing a wealth of pictures but if anyone would like me to post specific pictures, either of the panel itself, a side by side comparison to the 2405fpw or of specific games/resolutions just let me know. The purchase experience I have to say that on the two occasions Ive dealt with Dell, namely the order of a 2405fpw 12 months ago and now the purchase of the 3007fpw the buying experience has been delightful. The staff (who are obviously located in a call centre in India) are very very helpful, cooperative and friendly. 12 months ago when I ordered my 2405fpw the unit came with 9 dead pixels. I called the call centre and had a replacement in 2 days even before theyd picked the other panel up. The second arrives PERFECT. This time around, a perfect panel the first time but more on that below. I picked up the 3007 panel for a great price following an AUD$400 discount on the panel, and then an additional 5% off through work and a quick haggle of an additional AUD$87 off to round the price to an even AUD$2000. Unpacking The panel comes in quite a large box, however, the first thing that struck me was how light the box and unit were, I was expecting to strain when I picked it up, however, I lifted the box with one hand. Shortly after getting the unit home, I opened and removed the sucker with minimal effort. I noticed that the unit comes with a dual-link DVI cable and that said cable is already connected to the rear of the panel (which I found strange). First Impressions I lifted the sucker out and when I saw the sheer size of the panel, I have to confess I got so excited a little bit of pee almost came out !!! I mean to say, Ive seen the pictures in other threads with the unit beside other monitors but believe me its not until you see a 3007fpw in the flesh that you can truly appreciate just how large these panels are. I sat the 3007 next to my 2405 and could not believe how darn large this thing was. I wondered if Id done the right thing in terms of it being TOO BIG and likely needing to sit another foot away from the panel than my 2405. The panel aesthetics are beautiful via their simplicity. I nice solid arm at the back reveals a slide that allows the panel to extend quite high, and down almost to its base the ability to bring the sucker right down to its base is a masterstroke by Dell, they obviously considered the fact that to look straight onto the panel on the average height desk and chair that the panel would need to come down on the rail system to meet the base. The frame is a slightly darker colour than the 2405 fascia, and it FLAT rather than rounded (I assume its the same deal with the 2407). There are three buttons and they are recessed and touch sensitive brightness up, down and power.. thats the lot I love the simplicity. The power light glows the now fashionable fluorescent BLUE that adorns a lot of computer hardware these days. The top and bottom of the panel have a silver freeze about 3mm high. Ive seen reviews stating that the DELL logo on the front is boxed in a lighter silver colour, but my experiences revealed that its actually a plastic protector sheet and peels right off (doh !). Unleash the hounds Around 5 minutes later I was powering the sucker up after connecting the DVI cable, power and cabling up the built-in USB. The connections offered as you would all know are limited to DVI, power, USB and the option for a soundbar. I powered the screen and booted WindowsXP. WOW !!!!!! The image quality in Windows desktop is absolutely impeccable more detail to follow below. General Desktop Use General desktop use is a delight owing to the super-fine pixel pitch and massive screen area. Brightness by default is quite high, far higher and whiter than the already bright 2405fpw. I confess that I have not messed with the panels default brightness settings as yet. Its probably set a little too bright for long-term word processing use etc, but when I get the chance I will mess around the with Nvidia control panel and a PQ tuning application to get the contrast, colours etc just right. Speaking in terms of general use, colour, contrast and brightness are all absolutely brilliant. As I have said, I havent messed with any settings at all so its as it comes out of the box and I can tell you without hesitation that the whites are virginal, the colours really pop and the blacks in general terms, whilst not inky as on professional CRT displays, are good enough for general use. There have been a few posts regarding a few issues with the panel, so Ill share my experiences with mine; Panel noise or buzzing There is ZERO buzzing or noise from the panel. If I hold my ear up to the rear of the panel I can hear electrical noise from the unit, which I assume is the power transformer, backlight or both. But in day to day use (I am sitting around 50cm away from the panel) it operates silently. Backlight Uniformity My panel appears to have a perfectly adequate backlight, with no discernable bleeding or uniformity issues. In pure black screens, both bottom corners appear a little brighter than the rest of the panel, however, when I move my head the light changes, therefore its just the fact that this panel is so big and Im sitting close enough to it that Im viewing the bottom corners from outside the optimum viewing angle. My panel, for those who have kept track of the history of the 3007 is a revision 2. OK, so onto my experiences with gaming and movies. Beforehand, its probably worthwhile to provide my hardware specs, so if you are wondering whether your system has the beef to run this sucker it might help establish a benchmark of sorts. CPU: Duo Core 2 6600 (@stock) MEM: 2gig Corsair ddr2 533 (@stock) GPU Nvidia 7950gx2 (@stock) MOBO: Asus P5W-DH Deluxe HDDS: a bunch of sata drives (no raid) SOUND: Audigy 4 (X-fi cards wont work in my system) Gaming in general What I can tell you in regards to gaming on the panel is that it is an absolutely sublime experience, purely due to the excellent PQ, and of course, the mammoth screen size. I expected a significant improvement in the level of immersion over my 24, but I had no idea than the experience would be this good. In first person shooters, you are sucked right into the battle. Your arm/hand/weapon almost feels life sized. In fact, I help my hand up to the panel while trying COD2 and found that the hand in the game was roughly the size of my own hand !!! For Strategy gaming, provided that the game supports the higher resolutions, you simply see more of the battle at once and in more detail.. which can only be a good thing right ? For online RPGs (I am a Warcraft fanatic personally) the huge resolution of 2560x1600 allows heaps of freedom in terms of loading up lots of chat windows and other bits and pieces, while still maintaining a great viewing area/playing area for the character/battles etc. On ghosting/blurring there isnt any, at least, to my eyes. Bear in mind Ive used 12ms, 8ms, 5ms panels and also a great 2405fpw and I can confirm to my mind that the 3007 performance is better than any of them. I played CS:S, DOD:S and BF2 for a while and had no problems at all keeping the old frag count up when bolting around, turning quickly etc. There is NO INPUT LAG. In fact, I always scoffed at the 2405 owners who claimed they had input lag on the 2405 but now I have the 3007 and 2405 side by side, I can actually see what some people claim. There is ZERO input lag on the 3007.. the mouse tracks in real-time perfectly over the desktop.. when I cruise over to the 2405 I can feel a very, very, very minor difference. So the news is that the 2405 indeed has a VERY MINOR input lag, and the 3007 has zilch. One final point before I move onto the specific games Ive tested, being the mysterious second native resolution offered by the 3007 of 1280x800. Now I always thought that a panel only ever had ONE native res due to the way in which LCD works, but Dell claims a second native res of 1280x800. I notice that the res is exactly ½ of the maximum resolution, which must be something to do with the claims and the technology behind the panel etc. I can report, conclusively for gamers looking at the 3007 and looking to utilize the 1280x800 resolution, worried about some games not running well enough at 2560x1600 that the claims are correct the panel DOES display perfectly sharp at 1280x800. The resolution does not have any scaling look to it at all it looks like a panel that runs 1280x800 at a native resolution. Bear in mind though, that pixel size at 1280x800 on a 30 panel is quite large, meaning that notwithstanding it being crystal clear, the pixels are large on-screen. This means that at 1280x800 gamers expecting no jaggies etc will likely need to reach for the AA and AF settings to prevent jaggies. While we are at it, I should also confirm that the scaling to non-native resolutions is also excellent, in fact, Its the best scaling Ive seen on an LCD. 1920x1200 (my old friend from the 2405) and other non-native widescreen resolutions all look satisfactory. World of Warcraft Like 7 million others, Ive been bitten by the WoW bug, and it goes some way to explaining my quest for a larger, widescreen experience starting with the 2405 and now the 3007. WoW is just amazing on this panel. Its bright, beautiful and oh so large. I am running 2560x1600 on my 7950gx2 at a constant 60fps. I used to run the 2405 at 1920x1200 with no slowdowns at all, however, when I first booted up on the 3007 the FPS would drop and game play would get a bit jittery in heavily populated or graphically complex areas. I quickly discovered that in order to maintain 60fps at 2560x1600 I had to disable the full screen glow effect in the WoW video settings, and turn the Spell Effects to medium. Once I did that the FPS are better than the 1920x1200 I used to run on the 2405. I have a massive play area, and now I have 7 chat windows open and still have room for more. Panels like this are GOLD for a WoW enthusiast. There is ZERO ghosting or blurring, even is yucky grey regions in the game. The colours are absolutely stunning and really pop from the panel. I have not dipped below 60fps in the game at all since disabling the full screen glow setting, including in heavily populated areas like around the gates of ironforge. Running on a large panel really makes the game far more immersive and Im now noticing lots of new little graphical details on enemies etc. Half Life 2 To my surprise, I can run HL2 at 2560x1600 without a hitch. I thought that some of the prettier games might struggle, but no. The game runs at a consistent 60-90fps.. occasionally dipping into the low 50s when a large object is in view right in front of my character (like when you pick up a barrel or something with the gravity gun and its right in the players view). There is no ghosting or blurring, I found no problems tracking enemies and downing them even strafing and turning at high speeds. The level of detail in the game is outstanding, and the 30 panel really immerses you in the game. In the dark areas like Ravenholt, the blacks were really solid, not to CRT levels but good enough.. and really quite remarkable for a panel this size (also consider I havent adjusted brightness and the sucker is probably still in a torch mode out of the box). Oblivion I never pretended for a moment that my 7950gx2 could push this game at 2560x1600 at the FPS I like to experience and I was right. In towns, it pretty much OK at medium detail settings, but getting out amongst the grasses and forests made the poor little GPUs struggle. This was the first time I decided to try the 1280x800 resolution and the results were fantastic. The game is playable with almost all settings maxed out, even in forests etc and the FPS are smooth as silk in all but the harshest outdoor battles. Mind you, as I mentioned previously, although the resolution at 1280x800 is razor sharp with no discernable scaling evident, the pixel size is quite high at on a 30 panel at this res.. so the trade-off is some jaggies. Id rather suffer some jaggies and play this game at 60fps with the effects and detail maxxed out than play at 2560x1600 at medium/low settings and have the FPS struggle outdoors and in battles. The experience is so good Im going to create a new character and play back through the game again. CS:S, BF2, DOD:S I have to be honest here I like to play online shooters at really high FPS rates.. I cant stand FPS drops below 55fps when playing online. At 2560x1600 all the online shooters, both the Source variety and BF2 are perfectly playable and for the most part, the FPS stays OK. But in the heat of battle where were a few times where the FPS dipped, so again I opted to use the 1280x800 resolution. At this res the 7950gx2 just eats the games up. One world to PRO GAMERS .. you know the type.. the ones that live and die to play these games and live by their frag count because this panel is so large, competitive gaming might actually be a little more difficult than on a small panel, because in the heat of battle your eyes need to work more to look around to the extreme corners of the view etc. Maybe these milli-micro seconds or whatever are what separates competition gamers from the rest of us, so pros should bear in mind the extra work your eyes need to do to navigate this huge viewing area. Heroes of M&M5 No problems running at 2560x1600 at 60fps, and the game looked pants-wettingly gorgeous Video/movie viewing No ghosting, blurring or any other unpleasant experiences, regardless of the source material, be it xvid, DVD etc. DVDs and other MPG material dont look stunning on this panel.. they just look plain darn BIG. Its not dissimilar to running DVD or xvid on any larger than normal panel.. the huge resolution and pixel pitch of a computer LCD makes DVD and other mpg resolution material look a bit ordinary. For comparison sake, its the exact viewing experience I had on my 2405.. just a whole lot larger. Pixel crawl, twinkling etc were all present, just like any LCD panel over, say, 19.. but that said the size makes up for it and Id watch movies on this panel any day of the week. Final Thoughts So overall, as an enthusiastic gamer (particularly with WoW) this is the best purchase I have ever made for my computer. Coupled with a reasonably speced Conroe rig and good GPU (Id still recommend that gx2/sli/crossfire be MANDATORY purchase to run 2560x1600 at smooth fps), the monitor provides the best darn gaming experience Ive ever had. The caveats ? I can see only one, being that in order to keep driving the insane resolution of 2560x1600 further costly GPU purchases lay ahead for me. As DX10 and newer crops of games arrive, any owner of the 3007 will likely have to invest in new high-end GPUs to get the most out of this beat. Mind you, with 20-22 widescreen becoming more common almost to the point of being near entry-level then ATI/Nvidia will very likely make scaling performance at higher resolutions more important in the near year or two.. weve already seen this through release of SLI, gx2, crossfire etc.. after all if we all ran at 1280x1024 nobody would ever need anything more than a single 7900GT and these other high end options would not exist !! Id be happy to answer any questions via post or PM, and if anyone wants piccies etc I will post some.