~28″ 144Hz 4K models – including XV282K KV and VG28UQL1A

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  • #65607
    PCM2

      We’ve now reviewed both the Acer XV282K KV and ASUS VG28UQL1A, sharing the same 28″ Innolux panel with 144Hz refresh rate and ‘4K’ UHD resolution. So I thought I’d put together this comparison covering some of the potential advantages of each model. The underlying experience is very similar with both models really and I feel they both put in a really strong high refresh rate ‘4K’ performance. Striking a good balance between vibrant but not overdone colours reproduction at the same time – but of course, that’s subjective. The Gigabyte M28U is another key contender in this space, but it isn’t one I’ve reviewed myself so kept this out of the full ‘technical’ comparison. The Acer, ASUS and Gigabyte all share the behaviour with clear (to me) increases in overshoot at reduced refresh rates – even using the lowest pixel response time settings. I’m not sure at this stage whether the Samsung S28AG70 (28″ Odyssey G7) shares this characteristic, but it seems to be related to the native behaviour of the panel so it likely does (edit: it does).


      Potential advantages of the Acer XV282K KV:

      – More premium ‘feel’ and conservative design in my view due to circular metal-weighted stand base and powder-coated metal stand neck. The ASUS is robust and solid enough but quite ‘plasticky’. The height adjustment mechanism of the Acer is significantly smoother with a satisfying glide, whereas the ASUS is quite grabby. Acer also offers an extra 10mm height adjustment range with much more generous swivel field and more generous tilt adjustment as well. The ASUS should be fine for most, ergonomically.

      – USB-C (65W PD) and KVM functionality included.

      – ‘VisionCare 3.0’ sensor suite is quite useful in some respects. I found the ‘ColorSense’ feature useful in the evenings as an effective and somewhat dynamic Low Blue Light (LBL) setting. The ‘ProxiSense’ feature was useful and worked very well, dimming the screen and ultimately turning it off if you leave the desk. And swiftly turning the screen back on when you return.

      – The sRGB emulation setting was better calibrated (for our samples) primarily due to superior sRGB coverage of 99% vs. 93%. Both models allow brightness adjustment, which is good, but colour channels are locked.

      – Greater range of gamma adjustment in the OSD. 5 distinct settings vs. 3 for the ASUS.

      – Superior minimum white luminance (31 cd/m² vs. 71 cd/m²) will make a difference for highly light-sensitive users.

      – HDR was better calibrated without any ‘crushing’ issues for brighter shades (minor but still there on the ASUS). The ASUS also enforces a ‘Console Mode’ HDR experience for games consoles or AMD GPUs, which doesn’t offer proper colour gamut usage and presents a more SDR-like colour experience due to oversaturation. Some will like this ‘Console Mode’ look on the ASUS for the same reasons whey do under SDR, but it’s not how HDR is supposed to look and effectively reduces shade variety.

      – Some will prefer the gentler approach to HDR local dimming on the Acer as the brightness fluctuations of the zones is less extreme and hence less noticeable.

      – Lower 60Hz input lag.

      Acer XV282K KV


      Potential advantages of the ASUS VG28UQL1A:

      – 2 HDMI 2.0 ports in addition to the 2 HDMI 2.1 ports.

      – ‘MyFavorite’ (shortcut key) function of the OSD is very useful. Allowing you to quickly recall 2 separate sets of settings, encompassing everything on the OSD. I used this to create a very effective and well-balanced LBL setting but the flexibility with this is excellent. The Acer has ‘G1’, ‘G2’ and ‘G3’ presets which allow you to save and quickly recall some settings. But not all.

      – sRGB emulation setting allows ‘Gamma’ setting to be adjusted.

      – Slightly higher peak luminance under SDR (337 cd/m² vs. 313 cd/m²), on our unit at least and hardly a massive difference.

      – HDR is significantly more dynamic, providing a real boost to depth for some elements and a greater potential contrast enhancement than on the Acer. This is very situational – the more aggressive local dimming solution is annoying in some scenes as well.

      – Local dimming can be used for SDR. As with HDR, it works well for some scenes but is annoying in others. 8 zones with some ‘pseudo zones’ as described in the review making near-constant adjustments can be distracting.

      – ELMB SYNC allows strobe backlight operation in conjunction in VRR (Variable Refresh Rate) environment – down to 77Hz according to our testing. I wouldn’t say it’s an ideal strobe backlight setting due to strobe crosstalk, KSF phosphor fringing issues, colourful flashes and overshoot. But it does work and achieves its main goal of reduction perceived blur. The VRR element is a good flexibility for those wanting to use a strobe backlight setting with frame rate fluctuations.

      – Slightly lower overshoot at lower refresh rates such as 60Hz. It’s still moderately strong for some transitions and in my view if you’re sensitive to overshoot this is going to be unpalatable on either model. You can adjust the overdrive setting with Adaptive-Sync active whereas it’s locked on the Acer, but it makes no difference as the behaviour is similar in both cases.

      ASUS VG28UQL1A

      #65695
      PCM2

        Just thought I’d share a few thoughts on the 28″ models in comparison with the LG 27GP950. This applies to the 27GN950 as well. As LG have been unable to provide a sample I can’t provide a deeper dive, but these are just some quick thoughts I shared on YouTube that are worth sharing here as well:

        “The LG offers more vibrant colour output due to the more generous colour gamut (~98% DCI-P3 vs. ~90% DCI-3). Some will like this extra uplift of saturation, whilst others will prefer the lower levels of oversaturation offered by the 28” Innolux models, such as VG28UQL1A and XV282K KV. The LG offers a more dynamic HDR experience (more dimming zones, greater peak luminance). Whilst 16 dimming zones in itself can be quite good to give a good situational boost to contrast, the experience also depends on the dimming algorithm. The LG’s dimming algorithm is apparently rather aggressive and will make constant abrupt adjustments which can be rather noticeable and distracting in some scenarios. The pixel responsiveness isn’t as strong (still reasonable), though the LG has a better overdrive setting for lower refresh rates – with much lower overshoot there. ‘IPS glow’ tends to be somewhat stronger based on user feedback and it doesn’t offer a shifted blue light peak to less energetic wavelengths. So it doesn’t share the potential viewing comfort advantages of the models with 28″ Innolux panels. The LG does have some neat features like hardware calibration and Sphere Lighting 2.0 (an actually useful lighting feature).”

        Another thing to be aware of is that the LG includes a small fan. Most people won’t notice this as it’s quiet and doesn’t generally run high RPM except under extreme conditions. I know some people prefer knowing such an active cooling solution isn’t used and see it as a potential point of failure or something that could go wrong in the future. The 28″ models don’t have this fan, the LG uses it to aid cooling for its relatively powerful backlight. Some user feedback suggests the 28″ models have a less grainy screen surface than the LG, too. Although the LG’s screen surface is ‘lighter’ in terms of having a lower haze value – so reflection handling on the LG is weaker, though light emission from the screen is more direct. Kind of a weird mixture, but this is why I always state screen surfaces are complex 3D structures. A slight positive for the LG 27GP950 which doesn’t apply to some of the 28″ models (like M28U) is its inclusion of full bandwidth HDMI, which means all systems (including the PS5) can use their full signal capabilities.

        #66375
        Gigamike

          2 panels ive seen released in the UK, but am anxious to see them in the US. both the Samsung S28AG700 and the AOC U28G2X. Any idea on either of these panels release dates in the US? or are they just isolated releases? I love AOC monitors and have been waiting for a good 144 hz 4k from them for a while.

          #66380
          PCM2

            The S28AG700 (’28” Odyssey G7′) has been released in the US and is available from time to time via the link in our news piece. The problem is the same as the other models with HDMI 2.1 – it goes out of stock very quickly and is only briefly available. The manufacturers don’t have stockpiles of HDMI 2.1 port controllers, demand is extremely high and there have been real ‘chip shortage’ issues this year. Not a good combination for pumping out a steady stream of such monitors, unfortunately.

            I’m not sure if the AOC U28G2X is ever going to see the light of day in the US. AOC America is very separate to the European side I deal with so it’s sometimes difficult to get such information from them. But it isn’t listed on their website at all so may not be planned for release there. Or if it is, it may still be some way off.

            #66445
            PCM2

              Another model to consider is the Acer XB283K KV. The bottom of the news piece gives the following summary:

              “This model is the Predator-flavoured version of the Nitro XV282K KV we’ve reviewed. It appears to be very similar aside from going for ‘G-SYNC Compatible’ rather than FreeSync certification. This is just marketing and we’d expect actual VRR experience with either vendor to be unaffected by this – though FreeSync via HDMI support may be lacking on the Predator. HDMI 2.1 VRR is offered, however. The aesthetics are also different and we’re not sure if the Predator version offers KVM support.”

              Importantly, though, the Predator version seems much more competitively priced based on current US pricing. It is listed for $630 USD rather than the Nitro version being closer to $900 USD. Assuming it performs similarly, this makes it a very attractive proposition in my view.

              #66471
              JohnE

                Asus rep last month said that the ASUS VG28UQL1A was going to be available early October for America but their website hasn’t updated to include a Where to Buy tab like they did with the PG32UQ (although that still isn’t available as well)

                Has this been delayed?

                #66473
                PCM2

                  I don’t know what has happened to their North American release schedule. My ASUS contacts are based in UK and Asia and I haven’t heard anything further on that from other sources.

                  Edit: The VG28UQL1A is now available in the US.

                  #66563
                  PCM2

                    A Japanese review has been published of the Acer XB283K KV.

                    Although it’s largely similar to the XV282K KV (as expected) it does have different pixel overdrive tuning. The ‘Off’ and ‘Normal’ settings behave in the same way as each other, but they seem to have dialled down the overdrive. The level of acceleration isn’t as strong for higher refresh rates (including 144Hz), but the reviewer considered it fine for that anyway. And it is more appropriately tuned for lower refresh rates such as 60Hz, so it doesn’t have the overshoot issues that you typically see with these 28″ 144Hz models. It also seems to have a bit of a different backlight spectrum, with greater amplitude blue peak but shifted to an even less energetic wavelength in comparison. I’m trying to get confirmation if it uses the same panel as these two changes together could suggest a slightly different variant of the panel.

                    #66669
                    PCM2

                      A quick note relevant to this thread. RTINGS has published a review of the Samsung S28AG70. Nothing particularly surprising and overall performance similar to its direct competitors. The gamma tuning was not great on RTINGS sample, it was too high at the low end and too low at the high end. Meaning some dark shades are too dark and some bright shades too bright. It also has the issue with inescapable and moderately strong overshoot at reduced refresh rates, including 60Hz. So far the only model that escapes this issue is the Acer XB283K KV, though at the expense of weaker acceleration at higher refresh rates. As covered in my previous post.

                      #66777
                      PCM2

                        Another model enters this space in the form of the MSI MAG281URF. This one also has USB-C with KVM functionality and convenient switching, though it’s limited to 15W PD.

                        #66803
                        ahvingsing

                          Can you help clarify something in your review of the VG28UQL1A? You stated that GPU scaling should always be used for PC users. However, your review states: “Nvidia users should open the Nvidia Control Panel and navigate to ‘Display – Adjust desktop size and position’. They should ensure that ‘No Scaling’ is selected and ‘Perform scaling on:’ is set to ‘Display’ as shown below.” Does this not turn off scaling using the GPU, which would then enable scaling from the display instead? Also, can VRR/G-Sync still be used in conjunction with GPU scaling?

                          #66805
                          PCM2

                            You’re absolutely correct, the intention is to use monitor scaling and avoid GPU scaling. The review should say: “To ensure the monitor rather than GPU is handling the scaling process, as a PC user, you need to ensure the GPU driver is correctly configured so that the GPU doesn’t take over the scaling process.” Somehow this message got flipped around – will correct this immediately, thanks for bringing it to my attention.

                            #66806
                            ahvingsing

                              Thanks for the clarification! Do you know if VRR/G-Sync can still be used in conjunction with either display scaling enabled on the VG28UQL1A or with GPU scaling enabled with an RTX 30XX card?

                              #66807
                              Radaevia

                                Hello everyone,

                                I’m looking to buy a new monitor for my Playstation 5.
                                The monitor is intended for Console gaming (PS5). The games i mainly play are fast FPS games and RPG games so response time is important, size range is 27″-28″, not larger and obviously got HDMI 2.1 ports.
                                I’ve been using my good old BENQ XL2420Z for almost a decade and i LOVE the response time on that monitor for an example.

                                I was thinking about those monitors:
                                ASUS VG28UQL1A
                                ACER XV282K KV
                                MSI MAG281URF
                                GIGABYTE M28U

                                I’m currently leaning towards the ASUS which is 800$ right now.

                                Can someone share his thought or help guiding me to the right monitor for PS5.

                                #66811
                                PCM2

                                  @ ahvingsing

                                  Yes – and that’s always the case. There aren’t any models with Adaptive-Sync that cut out interpolation capability if you have VRR active. It’s a basic function of the scaler and that isn’t interfered with by Adaptive-Sync. The same full set of GPU scaling options are available with and without ‘G-SYNC Compatible Mode’ active as well. 🙂 Sometimes Adaptive-Sync might block off the scaling options and won’t allow you to select 1:1 etc. in the OSD. But the basic screen-filling interpolation will be the default behaviour and work all the same. For the ASUS this applies as you can’t access the ‘Aspect Control’ scaling options (as covered in the OSD video). I’ll also clarify in the written review that it will still let you use full screen interpolation via the monitor with VRR active. The scaling control on the Acer is called ‘Wide Mode’ and that is available with VRR active, incidentally.

                                  @ Radaevia

                                  As covered in this thread, they all use the same panel and offer similar core performance. I don’t have data on the MSI MAG281URF but I assume this applies there as well unless proven otherwise. Some of the sorts of differences you can expect are pointed out in the first post, but they don’t extend to responsiveness or image quality which is very similar in all cases across these models. Also be aware that PS5s are essentially just mid-range PCs with AMD graphics hardware and certain restrictions when it comes to graphical horsepower, resolutions, ports and refresh rates supported. The core performance is much as we describe on the PC side – the main differences can come under HDR as you’re using an AMD graphics chip connected via HDMI. That’s why we specifically cover that as well as our main Nvidia GPU on the PC – if you look at the HDR section of the VG28UQL1A review you’ll see this. As pointed out in my comparison in the first post, there can be some differences with the HDR algorithms and how that is implemented as well – but none of these models are exactly hotshots when it comes to HDR performance. I wouldn’t consider that any more than a ‘bonus’ feature you’ll use from time to time on any of these models.

                                  Overshoot at 60Hz is also an issue which is raised in this thread and covered in the reviews. And that’s actually a key reason I don’t give any of these models my ‘recommended badge’ or feature them in the recommendations section. At this resolution, even on a powerful PC, you’re going to get dips down into lower frame rates and given VRR support is a key feature of these you’ll have that matched with a low refresh rate. It’s very odd and an annoying inflexibility to have that even the lowest overdrive setting produces moderate overshoot at reduced refresh rates. Sensitivity to this varies and I know plenty of people are perfectly happy with these monitors on all levels – some love them in fact. On the PS5 some titles will be limited to using a 60Hz signal so that overshoot will creep in more strongly, but you’re used to the XL2420Z which also has overshoot issues of its own. You might still enjoy the experience and certainly should for 120Hz output.

                                  #66812
                                  Radaevia

                                    Thank you for the help. I learned a lot.

                                    As a summary, what monitors would you consider for PS5 right now?
                                    I don’t mind getting a different monitor, As long as it’s 27″-28″ and up to 1,000 USD.

                                    God bless

                                    #66814
                                    PCM2
                                      #66816
                                      ahvingsing

                                        Thanks so much for the info! So I can get a brand new VG28UQL1A for $400 USD from a friend but I’m running on a RTX 3070. Would you recommend that I get that VG28UQL1A and use scaling sometimes, or just go with one of your 1440p/144Hz recommendations?

                                        #66818
                                        PCM2

                                          That’s a tricky one as $400 USD really is a steal for a brand new (or even lightly used) VG28UQL1A. I’d be inclined to say you could make it work. as I think there’s still a lot of enjoyment to be had from it even with an RTX 3070 and there will be potential left to untap when you upgrade your GPU later. I wouldn’t say its output at 1440p is ideal, but it’s far from the worst I’ve seen. Many games also offer you a rendering resolution (resolution scale etc.) slider which means you can run the monitor at its native 3840 x 2160 and reduce that slider a bit for extra FPS. Visually you’ll take less of a hit doing it this way (extreme adjustments aside) and you’ll probably find doing that coupled with a few sensible graphics settings elsewhere you can reach a happy medium of image quality and performance. And I assume you’ll be using it for more than just gaming – perhaps some ‘4K’ UHD video content or simply browsing the internet? The extra pixel density can give a nice boost there as well.

                                          #66819
                                          ahvingsing

                                            In addition to gaming and movies, I work from home most of the time so that added screen real estate for office work would be great as well. I’m going to grab the VG28UQL1A and give it a shot. I figure I can flip it for at least what I got it for if it doesn’t work out. I want to say that I really really appreciate PC Monitors as a resource. Your reviews are so thorough and informative, and being able to converse over the forums is such an valuable added bonus! I’m gonna send some some support money your way!

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