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Lifewire / Erika Rawes
27-inch curved screen
Intuitive OSD controls
No mounting holes
A bit top-heavy
Slow response time
Affordable and attractive, the Samsung CF591 is a decent option for those who want a curved monitor with a larger screen size, but don’t want to spend a fortune.
The Samsung C27F591 is an attractive option for gamers given its curved, 27-inch screen and FreeSync compatibility. Unfortunately, there are also several areas where it falls short. I tested the Samsung C27F591 for two weeks, evaluating its design, setup process, image and sound quality, and performance, to see how it stacks up against other monitors on the market.
Check out our guide to the best budget gaming monitors you can buy today.
The curved screen on the C27F591 monitor is surrounded by an extremely thin silver bezel. There’s also a thin black interior border, but it’s barely noticeable. With a screen that stretches nearly edge-to-edge, the CF591 looks elegant and refined. The back of the monitor is a gloss-white plastic finish. Although the gloss-plastic finish is somewhat cheap-looking, it's easy to maintain. You can easily wipe the surface clean and keep the back of the monitor free of dust and fingerprints.
The power button sits in the bottom-left-hand corner on the back of the monitor, and it also doubles as the menu-control joystick, which allows you to adjust the settings on the C27F591. The joystick is incredibly intuitive and user-friendly, and it sits out of the way so you don’t have to worry too much about accidental button presses or settings changes.
The monitor’s stand is somewhat unique. Although the stand takes up a decent amount of desk space it's aesthetically pleasing, and it almost gives the monitor a floating effect. The large, circular base is about 10-inches in diameter, but the base doesn’t feel sturdy because the monitor’s arm is too thin and long. If you bump into your desk, the monitor will wobble quite a bit because the stand’s thin arm makes the monitor a bit top-heavy. You can tilt the monitor (from -2 to 20 degrees), but it doesn't offer any height adjustment.
The ports sit on the backside of the device, and they’re positioned near the bottom of the monitor, but they’re also positioned smack dab in the center, as opposed to being offset to the left or right. The ports are located directly above where the arm of the stand connects to the monitor, and this makes it a bit difficult to conceal your wiring. There's a hook on the stand where you can tuck your cables, but they don’t tuck away as nicely as they would if the ports were offset.
Although this monitor is relatively large, there are no mounting holes whatsoever on the back panel, so you can’t just slap on a VESA mount. To wall-mount or desk-mount the C27F591 you’d have to use an adapter kit.
With a screen that stretches nearly edge-to-edge, the CF591 looks elegant and refined.
When you open the box, you’ll find the Samsung CF591 curved monitor, the stand for the monitor, the power supply and adapter, an included HDMI cable, and documentation materials. You’ll need a Phillips or flat-head screwdriver to assemble the stand, but the setup process takes less than 10 minutes.
The monitor includes an HDMI cable, but if you want to connect via VGA or DP you’ll need to provide your own. There’s no USB port on the monitor either. The monitor itself is plug and play—connect the power supply and a cable to your tower or laptop. To assemble the stand, you use a screwdriver to screw the bottom two screws into the neck, and then slide the stand onto the monitor.
Adding in FreeSync and a game mode doesn’t necessarily mean the peripheral is viable as a gaming monitor, but the C27F591 performs well with most PC and console titles. I noticed the slightest bit of color distortion on first-person shooters, but it was pretty mild. I also saw some ghosting with Mortal Kombat 11 and Forza Horizon 4 (that doesn’t typically occur on my Acer Predator XB1).
Overall, the monitor has a crisp and clear picture, in spite of its less than impressive max resolution of 1920 x 1080. The refresh rate of 60 Hz is fair, and the monitor’s 4-ms response time isn’t exactly head-turning. But this is a VA monitor, so I expected a slower response time. You can overclock it (up to about 72 Hz), and there are settings right within the OSD that let you adjust the response time (between standard, fast, or fastest), although cranking the setting up may be more trouble than it's worth for most games because you may start to notice some latency. The VA panel has Freesync, so if you have a compatible (AMD) graphics card, this can help reduce the stuttering and screen tearing that can result when your graphics card is sending frames at a faster rate than your monitor can process.
The monitor has a crisp and clear picture, in spite of its less than impressive max resolution of 1920 x 1080.
The best-curved monitors have just enough curvature to enhance viewing angles, but not so much that it causes distortion. The C27F591 has a curvature of 1,800R. The curvature is subtle, yet present enough to provide those better viewing angles. With a 3000:1 contrast ratio and about 119 percent support of the RGB color gamut, the color is vibrant and the dark tones are surprisingly rich. It also has different brightness modes for viewing movies, basic use, or for enhancing contrast. There’s a game mode, which optimizes the settings for console and PC gaming, and you can also take advantage of settings like eco mode and eye saver mode.
Samsung’s CF591 monitor has sufficient sound quality for both movies and gaming. The speakers are located on the back lower portion of the monitor, with one speaker on each side of the arm. With the dual five-watt stereo speakers built-in, the sound gets pretty loud, but it lacks fullness at louder volumes. The treble and mid-tones are distinct, but the bass is shallow. When you change the sound from the standard mode to music mode or movie mode, it enhances the bass slightly, but the bass isn't punchy in any of the sound modes. On the plus side, speech comes through very clearly, and the speakers rival those in some of the best computer monitors in this price range. There’s also an audio jack for connecting an external speaker. You can connect a pair of headphones for gaming/whenever you don’t want to disturb the people around you.
The incredibly clumsily named Easy Setting Box SW is downloadable screen-splitting software available for the CF591 that lets you arrange and rearrange your windows quickly and easily. You can choose a template indicating the manner in which you want your windows arranged, and when you open multiple windows, you’ll be able to see them all simultaneously. The software is pretty basic, but it does the job well, and it's especially helpful if you’re using the monitor for work.
The CF591 serves well as a productivity monitor. If you typically use three screens at work, you can easily knock it down to two because of the large size and screen splitting allow you to manage more tasks.
The Samsung C27F591 has been on the market for a few years now, so the price has dropped a bit since it was first released. We’ve seen the monitor on sale for between $220 and $270.
Acer ED3 (view on Amazon): Acer’s ED3 monitors are also FreeSync compatible, and you can find an Acer ED3 monitor with similar pricing and specifications. Like the Samsung C27F591, the Acer ED273 monitor has a 27-inch display, 1920 x 1080 resolution, a 4-ms response time, and 178 degree horizontal and vertical viewing angles. While the ED273 has a faster refresh rate of 75 Hz, it only has 3-watt speakers (instead of 5-watt speakers like the Samsung C27F591). The Samsung C27F591 also has a more unique design than the Acer ED273.
Samsung CF390 (view on Amazon): Samsung’s CF390 monitor retails for under $200 for a 24-inch screen size, and it looks similar to the CF591 at first glance. It has the same resolution, curvature, response time, and viewing angles as the CF591. It even has a similar-looking stand. However, in addition to its smaller screen size, it also has a different color scheme, and the back has mounting holes.
The Samsung CF591 is an attractive monitor with a vibrant, curved display.
The monitor’s response time and refresh rates leave something to be desired, but the addition of FreeSync helps ensure a tear-free, stutter-free picture. Overall, the CF591 performs well and provides a quality experience for those using the monitor for gaming, productivity, or everyday use.