Hardware: plenty of options
Dell's involvement with the project is very obvious on the AW2310, and its height-adjustable, rotating standard, four-port USB hub, speakers and headphone jack, and, of course, HDMI and DVI inputs all mean it has no trouble competing with the Asus VG236H, which was up until now the 120 Hz with the most flexible hardware.
Accurate colours, but not perfect
Compare the Alienware OptX AW2310 to other LCD monitors in our Product Face-Off
Using its default settings, the OptX AW2310 produces reasonably accurate colours (deltaE: 2.8). Their main weakness is a slight blue tinge and an off-centre gamma curve. Amongst other things, that leads to shades of grey that are too light.
You can still improve things by moving from Standard to Warm colours, which reduces the deltaE to 2.1. Doing so removes the blue tinge and improves the overall quality of greys. However, the downside is that pure white tends a little towards red. The only way to get a perfect result is to use a calibration profile.
The contrast ratio peaks at 850:1, which is just about exactly the average value we've found across all of the monitors we've tested.
Responsiveness: good, but not the best
over ten frames
We had thought that Alienware's advertised 3 ms response time would put this monitor a little behind the majority of its 120 Hz competitors which are at 2 ms, and that's what we found in our tests. It is a little behind the others, and the Acer GD245HQ is still unbeaten, but in practice, the AW2310 is more than capable of reproducing fast-moving objects fluidly when it's in 120 Hz mode.
When showing films, this monitor introduces a lot of blurriness, and there's nothing about its upscaling we haven't seen before. As ever, you're better off performing that task on your player and then sending a 1080p signal directly to the monitor.