LG 34UC79G 34″ Lightning Review: A Feature-packed 144Hz Ultrawide Curved Gaming Monitor

Ultrawide gaming monitors are not quite as common as standard 16:9 monitors, and the LG 34UC79G is one of the few 21:9 monitors in the market that combines a high 144Hz refresh rate with a curved IPS panel. On top of that, it even comes with AMD’s FreeSync technology, which makes it that bit more appealing to gamers.
However, you will be paying quite a high price for the 34UC79G’s range of features, and not many consumers will be willing to drop that kind of money without careful consideration. Here’s what we think.
What Is It?

The LG 34UC79G is a 34-inch, 21:9 curved gaming monitor – it has a 3800R curvature – with a 144Hz native refresh rate. On top of that, it also offers AMD FreeSync, but this is only limited to 50Hz.
Interestingly, the 34UC79G has a 2560 x 1080 resolution IPS panel too. While this is definitely not the sharpest display around, the 1080p resolution makes a lot of sense in the context of gaming. For one, you wouldn’t need a top-of-the-line GPU to truly take advantage of the monitor’s high 144Hz refresh rate; there are less pixels to push, after all.

Like any good gaming monitor, the 34UC79G’s display is height-adjustable; it can also be tilted, but not pivoted or swiveled. But hey, this is a curvedgaming monitor: we imagine there’s no real need to pivot or swivel it.
Is It Any Good?

Out of the box, the 34UC79G’s display looks really good. Colours are vibrant, colour temperature is neither too cool nor warm, and it’s a pretty darn bright monitor. In daily use, I actually turn down the brightness level to 35%. There are also a range of “Picture Mode” to choose from, including Reader, Cinema, and various Game modes.
Speaking of which, gaming on the 34UC79G is without a doubt an absolute bliss. Although its 3800R curvature isn’t immediately noticeable when gaming, its ultrawide 21:9 aspect ratio and fast 144Hz refresh rate make for a surprisingly immersive gaming experience. Thanks to the high refresh rate, games feel a lot smoother and fluid.

Outside of gaming, the 34UC79G’s 21:9 aspect ratio gives enough space to multitask efficiently. For example, I can open a Word document and have Google Chrome active at the same time side-by-side without feeling cramped at all. Thanks to the fact that the 34UC79G has an IPS panel, viewing angles are very good too. However, I did notice some light bleeding at the top and bottom left sides of the monitor, but this isn’t terribly noticeable in normal usage.

I’m also quite fond of the on-screen display (OSD) of the 34UC79G. Not only is it simple and easy to understand, the joystick control right under the LG logo at the bottom of the monitor makes it very intuitive to navigate around the menu.
The Bad Stuff. Tell Me.

Although the 34UC79G has a 144Hz native refresh rate, there’s a noticeable drop in image quality when I crank up the refresh rate. Out of the box, the monitor is automatically set to run at 59Hz, but switching the refresh rate to 144Hz results in a noticeably darker display.
It’s not just the brightness itself, mind you: colours appear more muted overall. Reds are darker than they should be, the colour temperature is noticeably cooler, and…the display just doesn’t look quite as pleasant.

That being said, tweaking the 34UC79G’s colour profile in the OSD does improve the image quality, but this really shouldn’t be necessary at all. Not only is this not user-friendly, it’s pretty unexpected for a monitor at this price range.
And that’s the other downside with the 34UC79G: it costs RM3,899. While it’s really only one of very few ultrawide gaming monitors with a high 144Hz refresh rate and a curved display, RM3,899 is still a pretty steep price to pay for a monitor.

We did do a quick search on several e-commerce sites to find that the 34UC79G can actually be purchased for as low as RM3,311 now. That’s still quite a high asking price, of course, but the monitor’s feature set does make it a less bitter pill to swallow.
Should I Buy It?

Well, it depends. If you’re looking for an ultrawide, curved gaming monitor with a high 144Hz refresh rate, the LG 34UC79G is almost your only option; almost. The closest competitor to this monitor is actually the BenQ XR3501, which we reviewed back in 2015. Originally retailing at RM3,999, the XR3501 can be bought for only RM2,899 now.
However, there are a few things to note here: although the XR3501 is a slightly larger 35-inch gaming monitor with a more “curvaceous” 2000R curved display, its VA panel isn’t quite as good as the LG 34UC79G’s IPS display. On top of that, LG’s offering also supports AMD FreeSync; the XR3501 has neither FreeSync nor Nvidia G-Sync.
The BenQ XR3501.
Bar its high asking price, I thoroughly enjoyed my time with the LG 34UC79G. Its display quality is definitely above average, it has a fast 144Hz panel, and I love how intuitive its OSD is. Yes, it’s a costly gaming monitor, but not many gaming monitors in the market matches the 34UC79G’s extensive feature set.
And if the 34UC79G has all the features you’ve been looking for in a gaming monitor, it’s really quite a good buy.

Photography by Leon Lam.

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The PlayStation 4 Pro is Back at Its Lowest Price

If you missed it the last time, the Sony PlayStation 4 Pro is now back at its lowest price ever. In fact, this time around you’ll even get an extended 2-year warranty bundled in.
The Pro variant of the PS4 allows gamers to play games with enhanced graphics (up to 4K resolution) as it has double the graphics power compared to the original PS4. Of course, this is game-dependent, while a HDR-supported 4K TV maximises the experience. That said, the boost in graphics helps even in 1080p resolution, and the 1TB HDD is always a good thing.
In a tweet posted last night, local retailer HeavyArm announced its Merdeka promotion, offering the PlayStation 4 Pro for RM1,499. But a quick search in Lazada will show a few more pretty good deals.

One listing matches the RM1,479 lowest price from some weeks ago, but we think this one is the better deal: RM1,499 for the PlayStation 4 Pro with free 2-year extended warranty.
If you missed out on the previous deal, or have been itching to get one, you have three very good options to cop yourself a brand new PlayStation 4 Pro.
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Go Vote For Your Malaysia Day Google Doodle Now

The Doodle 4 Google Malaysia Day contest has entered the public voting phase. All Malaysians are invited to head over to the website and vote for their favourite doodle; which will be presented on the Google Malaysia homepage this Malaysia Day.
Students aged seven to 17 have submitted contest entries across four age categories for the contest. Google Malaysia representatives have looked over the entries and selected four finalists from each of the categories for public voting. The winners from each category in this phase will be presented before a panel of judges from the Google Doodle team in Mountain View to determine the grand prize winner.
Voting is open from today until midnight 17 August 2017 at the Doodle 4 Google Malaysia Day site.
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Google Makes it Easier to Share YouTube Videos with New In-App Messaging Feature

Google has just made it way easier for you to not only share YouTube videos with your friends, but to also chat about the videos without leaving the YouTube app at all. The company is rolling out a new in-app messaging feature for YouTube, so you can share and chat about all the videos you want within YouTube; no more copying and pasting links, or sharing through third-party social or messaging apps.
To share a YouTube video with your friend or a group of friends, simply hit the share button, and select people from your contacts to share with. Once done, all those in the group would be able to respond to the video, or share more YouTube videos with each other. You can access your YouTube chats via a dedicated “Shared” tab located at the bottom of the YouTube app.

Of course, the previous sharing methods will still be available, so if you have less tech-savvy friends, you can still share YouTube videos with them the old-school way.
The feature isn’t completely new though. Earlier this year, Google started testing it in Canada, and now, they are rolling it out globally to YouTube mobile apps starting today.
(Source: YouTube)
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Tesla Model S Travels 1000km On A Single Charge For The First Time

A group of Italian Tesla owners has set a new record by driving a Model S 100D 1078km on a single charge. The feat was made more impressive by the fact that it used a standard production vehicle; and had he charging port sealed by a lawyer to ensure that the record would be official.
Range is one of the biggest challenges electric cars face today, as it isn’t as simple as simply pulling into a petrol station for a few minutes. Recharging an electric car takes significantly longer. Tesla has been working on overcoming these limitations by introducing superchargers and building more efficient batteries. Still, trying to hit 1000km on a single charge was not considered withing the realm of possibility. Especially considering that even diesel cars have trouble accomplishing the feat.

In order to achieve the record, the club had five drivers complete the task of driving through southern Italy for 29 hours. To reduce rolling resistance the car was fitted with low-rolling resistance tyres and to also conserve power, the air conditioning turned off. Keeping a constant speed with the minimal use of brakes is the key to achieving high efficiency.

After hearing the news, Elon Musk was excited and tweeted his congratulations to the group. It is definitely a new feat for a production vehicle to achieve that much of a distance on a single charge, but of course, it isn’t in conditions that one might normally have. Ideally, there is hope that as technology progresses, efficiency improves and the rise of the electric vehicles will slowly overtake combustion engines.
[Source: The Verge]
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Toyota Invests In Mazda To Expand Automotive Tech R&D

Toyota has taken a 5% stake in Mazda in a move which sees the two parties building a joint plant in the US worth $1.6 billion. Toyota also says that it is increasing investments in automotive technologies such as self-driving, AI and green technology.
Toyota has not exactly been known to be at the forefront of automotive technology. Its lack a fair bit of the newer technologies offered by the competition. This situation is only worsened due to pressure from tech giants such as Google, Apple and even Amazon.

Here are more details of the joint venture between Toyota and Mazda in the US.
Establish a joint venture that produces vehicles in the U.S.

As part of the new alliance, Toyota and Mazda have agreed to explore establishing a joint venture plant in the U.S. with equal funding contributions. The plant would have an estimated annual production capacity of approximately 300,000 units. Pending approvals and authorisation by relevant government agencies, the companies will begin to examine detailed plans with the goal to starting operations of the new plant in 2021. The plant will require a total investment of approximately $1.6 billion, and will create up to 4,000 jobs. In addition to the collaboration in product and technology areas that the companies have enjoyed thus far, Toyota and Mazda intend to improve competitiveness in manufacturing through this new production collaboration.
At the new plant, Mazda expects to produce cross-over models that Mazda will newly introduce to the North American market, and Toyota plans to produce the Corolla for the North American market.
By producing vehicles in the U.S., Mazda aims to build a production structure to further grow in North America. These activities will allow the company to more quickly respond to its customers’ needs depending on the region and model.
By further increasing its production capacity in the U.S., Toyota is to further pursue management that is closer to the region, as a measure to improve its response to the growing North American market. At Toyota’s new plant in Guanajuato, Mexico, which is currently under construction, Toyota plans to produce the Tacoma, instead of the Corolla. There will be no substantial impact on Toyota’s investment and employment plan there.

Jointly develop technologies for electric vehicles
With increasing demand and expectations for electric vehicles worldwide, Toyota and Mazda are to explore joint development of technologies for the basic structure of competitive electric vehicles, mobilizing and exchanging expertise freely and actively. These technologies will allow the companies to respond quickly to regulations and market trends in each country. Specific details of the collaboration will be determined as the companies work together going forward.
Jointly develop connected technology and collaborate on advanced safety technologies
Toyota and Mazda will work together to jointly develop technologies for onboard multimedia infotainment systems in preparation for increased use of in-car information technologies and the increasing demand for connected technologies. In addition, Toyota will cooperate with Mazda in Toyota’s vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) and vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) technologies with the ultimate goal of creating a mobile society devoid of accidents.
Expand complementary products
Currently, Mazda is supplying a compact sedan to Toyota in North America. In addition, Toyota is to supply a compact commercial “two-box” van to Mazda in Japan. Beyond this, the companies will further explore the possibilities of other complementary products on a global level.
[Source: Toyota & TechCrunch]
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Apple Officially Joins Instagram, Shares #ShotoniPhone Photos and Videos

It looks like Apple has finally joined Instagram. The account is still very new with only a handful of posts at the time of writing. For now, the company is sharing photos and videos from its Shot on iPhone campaign.
Apple’s official Instagram account handle is, as expected, @apple. Just in case you’re wondering, yes, it is verified.

This is not the first time Apple is appearing on social media of course; the company already has Instagram, Facebook and Twitter accounts for its Music service, which are constantly updated with new content. The company also has a main account on Facebook and Twitter for some time how, however, both remains blank.
It’s not a surprise that Apple is picking Instagram to show off #ShotoniPhone content. They have been printing billboards and publishing various ads for the campaign for a couple of years now. Recently, Apple also released video tutorials to teach users how to shoot on iPhone 7, so with all these efforts, what better way to encourage users to shoot on an iPhone than an Instagram account that feature their pictures?
Check out Apple’s brand new Instagram account at @apple.
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MBI Group Enters E-hailing Business In Penang

The name MBI Group may not exactly ring many bells, but it’s currently one of the more interesting companies in Penang. The company runs a commercial enterprise based on its own virtual currency. Now, it’s expanding that reach into the e-hailing business as well.
MBI’s app is currently called MULA Car, and functions in much the same way as Grab and Uber do. However, it’s not exactly a ridesharing service; as there at 150 MPVs and 25 vans under MBI Group’s employ. The service has also been operating on the streets of Penang since March.
As on can expect, booking these rides doesn’t use regular money. Instead, it takes advantage of M-coin; much like the rest of MBI’s business ventures.

If the name MBI sounds familiar, it’s because the company recently came under investigation from Bank Negara. It was included in the list of businesses that were suspected of flouting financial regulations, and briefly had its accounts frozen.
A large portion of the problems were due to an extremely high promise of returns on those investing in M-coin. Which promotions claimed would be as high as 25 percent. Despite this, investigators have not yet turned up any wrongdoing.
MULA Car is available on both Android and iOS; although only those in Penang will be able to actually get a ride.
[Source: The Star]
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Meet The Awesome Japanese Table Flip Arcade Game: Yes, You Can Play It In Malaysia

Japan is known for a lot of things including its video game industry. It not only able to produce game consoles and long-lasting box office game series but is also able to turn many wacky ideas into video games. Cho Chabudai Gaeshi! is one such game which I finally managed to experience it myself last weekend after hearing about it for so many years.
Let me get this right out of the gate: yes, I’m aware that it is a very old game. What made this rather awesome is that I don’t have to travel all the way to Japan in order to play the game. That being said, I only learned of its existence at Cross Fire arcade in 1 Utama through social media few months ago despite being aware of the game for so long.
How to play Cho Chabudai Gaeshi! – first, you stomp and then you FLIP!
Made by Taito, Cho Chabudai Gaeshi! is a very simple game. In fact, its title which translates to Super Table-Flip! as well as its physical design pretty much explain what the game is all about. All you need to do in the game is inflict as much damage as possible to the scenarios in the game by pounding on the table to drop objects before flipping it – all within 60 seconds.
The version that I played at Cross Fire arcade in 1 Utama is actually the second version of the game and was released in Japan toward in October 2010. Requires three tokens which equals to RM 1.50, this is how the machine in 1 Utama looks like:

RAAGEEEE
Damn, the #fliptable game is so good, wish it has English translation.
Also wish more flip per round. RM 1.50 per flip weh. 🤔 pic.twitter.com/Tep5iw5Z6t
— Syefri Zulkefli (@chapree) August 6, 2017

Since this is a rather impromptu session, so I didn’t do my research on how to play Cho Chabudai Gaeshi! properly prior to my encounter with it at 1 Utama. Furthermore, I didn’t understand the on-screen instructions too since the game is in Japanese. I would learn later that there is only one round per play in the game which is quite short to be frank.
Nevertheless, it still feels so satisfying especially when I finally flip the table away as hard as I could although I must admit I did it with a bit of rage…I just can’t help it. So, the legend was true: Cho Chabudai Gaeshi! is indeed a great stress reliever.
YOU KNUCKLEHEADSSSS!
Meanwhile, I also found out later that the original version of Cho Chabudai Gaeshi! has been translated to English and is called Anger Explosion which definitely a much subtler name when compared to the game’s original Japanese title. According to a number of YouTube videos from as early as 2011, this particular version can be found at Genting Highlands although I don’t know whether it is still there today.
Hence, do leave your comments if you have seen Cho Chabudai Gaeshi! in other parts of Malaysia. I am pretty sure many out there would like to check out this game despite it being almost seven years old.
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Toyota Invests in Mazda as well as automotive tech

Toyota has taken a 5% stake in Mazda in a move which sees the two parties building a joint plant in the US worth $1.6 billion. Much to the love of President Trump, Toyota says that it is also going to increase investment in automotive technologies such as self-driving, AI and green technology.
As Toyota has been battling for the top auto manufacturer in the world, they haven’t been exactly known to be at the forefront of automotive technology. Most folks here know that Toyota cars in Malaysia do lack a fair bit of the newer technologies offered by their continental competitors.
Still, with the entrance of tech giants such as Google, Apple and even Amazon, Toyota can’t help but also not fall behind and start putting a bit more emphasis into technology which may shape the future of automotive.

Here are more details of the joint venture between Toyota and Mazda in the US.
Establish a joint venture that produces vehicles in the U.S.

As part of the new alliance, Toyota and Mazda have agreed to explore establishing a joint venture plant in the U.S. with equal funding contributions. The plant would have an estimated annual production capacity of approximately 300,000 units. Pending approvals and authorization by relevant government agencies, the companies will begin to examine detailed plans with the goal to starting operations of the new plant in 2021. The plant will require a total investment of approximately 1.6 billion U.S. dollars, and will create up to 4,000 jobs. In addition to the collaboration in product and technology areas that the companies have enjoyed thus far, Toyota and Mazda intend to improve competitiveness in manufacturing through this new production collaboration.
At the new plant, Mazda expects to produce cross-over models that Mazda will newly introduce to the North American market, and Toyota plans to produce the Corolla for the North American market.
By producing vehicles in the U.S., Mazda aims to build a production structure to further grow in North America. These activities will allow the company to more quickly respond to its customers’ needs depending on the region and model.
By further increasing its production capacity in the U.S., Toyota is to further pursue management that is closer to the region, as a measure to improve its response to the growing North American market. At Toyota’s new plant in Guanajuato, Mexico, which is currently under construction, Toyota plans to produce the Tacoma, instead of the Corolla. There will be no substantial impact on Toyota’s investment and employment plan there.

Jointly develop technologies for electric vehicles
With increasing demand and expectations for electric vehicles worldwide, Toyota and Mazda are to explore joint development of technologies for the basic structure of competitive electric vehicles, mobilizing and exchanging expertise freely and actively. These technologies will allow the companies to respond quickly to regulations and market trends in each country. Specific details of the collaboration will be determined as the companies work together going forward.
Jointly develop connected technology and collaborate on advanced safety technologies
Toyota and Mazda will work together to jointly develop technologies for onboard multimedia infotainment systems in preparation for increased use of in-car information technologies and the increasing demand for connected technologies. In addition, Toyota will cooperate with Mazda in Toyota’s vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) and vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) technologies with the ultimate goal of creating a mobile society devoid of accidents.
Expand complementary products
Currently, Mazda is supplying a compact sedan to Toyota in North America. In addition, Toyota is to supply a compact commercial “two-box” van to Mazda in Japan. Beyond this, the companies will further explore the possibilities of other complementary products on a global level.
[Source: Toyota & TechCrunch]
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