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The 32-inch Dell UP3218K

If CES is a preview of the future, then give me more of this particular flavor. Dell today announces a new 32-inch, 8K desktop monitor with 1.07 billion colors, aluminum construction, 100 percent coverage of the AdobeRGB and sRGB color gamuts, and a monster $4,999 price. The UP3218K has a resolution of 7680 x 4320 (for a pixel density of 280ppi), which is as many pixels as you’d get from four 4K displays or 16 Full HD panels.

Speaking to experts ahead of Dell’s unveiling at CES, the company’s Frank Azor, general manager for the Alienware and XPS brands, joked that the UP3218K could be considered a reasonable purchase if rationalized as buying four small 4K monitors. This is an almost unprecedented product, matched only by Sharp’s 27-inch IGZO prototype with 8K resolution. But the Sharp monitor that was shown off in October isn’t going on sale anytime soon and happens to be thick enough to accommodate multiple iMacs.

Dell’s 8K monitor is refined and ready for production, with a minimal bezel on all four sides of the screen and all the essential adjustments you might expect from a professional display: pivot, tilt, swivel, and height. The essential thing to remember, says Azor, is that this 8K screen is intended primarily for graphics, design, and photo professionals: those who want to squeeze out every last bit of detail possible from their display and have the budget to spend to make that happen.

The $4,999 UP3218K goes on sale on March 23rd. This 8K monitor commands a heavy premium today because of how novel it is, but it should come down in price over time, and then us mere mortals can start thinking about how many graphics cards we’ll need to properly feed such a mighty resolution.

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