Samsung have made a lot of great gaming monitors over the years, and they've also been making steady inroads into the realm of cloud gaming through their ongoing partnership with Microsoft. Until now, most of their cloud ambitions have been neatly contained in the console space, but today Samsung have unveiled their latest cloud-enabled PC monitors, presumably in the hope that the combination of Xbox Cloud Gaming, Nvidia's GeForce Now, Stadia, Utomik and Amazon Luna services inside their integrated Samsung Gaming Hubs will be enough to convince folks to part with their towers once and for all.
Samsung first announced their Gaming Hub cloud gaming platform back in July for their smart TVs, and it's that same service that's going to be available on their Odyssey Ark and Odyssey G70B and G65B monitors, which have been unveiled this week at Gamescom and will be available before the end of the year. Samsung say they've all been designed to offer a complete home gaming PC experience without the need for dedicated PC hardware, although people will still be able to connect them to a Windows or Mac device wirelessly if they wish.
The G70B will be available in 28in and 32in screen sizes, and their IPS panels will have a 144Hz refresh rate, up to a 4K resolution and support for both AMD's FreeSync Premium Pro technology, as well as an Nvidia G-Sync Compatible badge.
The G65B, on the other hand, comes in curved 27in and 32in flavors with a 2560x1440 resolution, topped with an even higher 240Hz refresh rate. Like the G70B, it's also a FreeSync Premium Pro monitor, although there's no mention of being an official G-Sync Compatible job as well in their announcement statement.
Then there's the super fancy Odyssey Ark, which Samsung are calling the 'ultimate entertainment screen'. This enormous 55in curved behemoth is one of Samsung's Quantum Mini-LED displays, and comes with their proprietary Matte Display and Sound Dome tech. I believe the former just boils down to an anti-glare and anti-reflection layer, but the 'Sound Dome' will apparently deliver a 60W 2.2.2 channel audio system through its four integrated speakers on each corner of the Ark, and two woofers in the middle. It also has something Samsung are calling a 'Cockpit Mode', which is quite possibly the fanciest marketing jargon I've ever heard for a height-adjustable stand, tilt and pivot functionality.
Silly marketing speak aside, it will have a 165Hz refresh rate, AMD FreeSync Premium Pro tech like the others, and Samsung's Gaming Hub as standard. In all seriousness, though, who in all honesty is going to sit at their desk gazing at a 55in monitor? You're basically talking about a television at this point, and I refuse to call it anything else.
Unsurprisingly, the Ark is also expensive out of this world, coming in at a cool £2600. No word on how much the other Odyssey monitors will cost just yet, but I wouldn't be surprised if we're looking at a grand each absolute minimum. At that kind of price, I'm not sure you'll actually be saving that much over a traditional PC and monitor combo, but you never know. Maybe they'll masively impress hardware editor James once he gets to see them in the flesh. In the meantime, though, I think I'll stick with my current setup, thanks.
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