Choosing a 1440p gaming monitor

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Buying a monitor? Please refer to this thread. We appreciate your support!

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  • #45000

    Hi Mark and welcome,

    It’s important to realise that all monitors on the market at the moment have distinct strengths and weaknesses. No model is perfect, so it’s important to consider your own personal preferences and think about what exactly is important for you in the experience. Some users are particular about responsiveness, others prefer strong contrast and perhaps vibrant colours, whilst others value consistent and accurately represented colours. The Samsung C27HG70 is certainly an interesting and unique monitor. Unfortunately Samsung haven’t been able to provide a review sample of this model yet, so I haven’t been able to test it out myself.

    Having said that, I am quite familiar with the characteristics of the panel it uses. The AOC AG322QCX uses a 31.5″ variant of the panel. It would be worthwhile having a little look at that review so you’re aware of some of the main benefits and drawbacks. Some points to bear in mind:

    – The contrast is stronger than on competing 144Hz models with different panel types (IPS-type or TN).
    – Colours appear fairly vibrant overall, more so than TN models and especially where bright shades are cast against darker backgrounds (strong contrast helps with this). The colour gamut is also quite wide which helps with the vibrancy.
    – There are some shifts in gamma and colour saturation as you look at different sections of the screen or move your head. For example, colours appear less rich towards the edges and bottom of the screen.
    – The refresh rate itself is a nice thing, especially when accompanied with a suitably high frame rate. FreeSync helps rid the experience of tearing and stuttering where the frame rate falls below the refresh rate, but higher frame rates are still beneficial.
    – As with all VA models, there are some weaknesses in pixel response times. Particularly where darker shades are involved in the transition, giving some trailing in places that could be described as ‘smeary’. This is more common in night time or dark indoors scenes in games, for example.
    – There are some issues with sub-optimal pixel structure with text not appearing quite as sharp as it ideally would. The tighter pixel density of the 27″ WQHD C27HG70 helps mitigate this to an extent, though, and most users wouldn’t consider this to be a major problem.

    Some alternatives to consider are explored earlier on in this thread. You’ll see that all models have their strengths and weaknesses. As I said, the Samsung is an interesting and unique choice. Some weaknesses compared to other models, but some distinct strengths as well. It’s all about weighing those up for yourself.

    #45023

    Hello everyone

    I’ve been looking for the best gaming monitor that has 27 “, 2K, 144Hz, G-Sync, IPS.
    It is difficult for me to decide, since some have an input lag to consider, others suffer from many negative symptoms, etc …

    So what do you think is the best monitor these days? Personally in TN I have decided it, but I would like to have the best in IPS, and to be able to make a decision.

    A cordial greeting.

    #45028

    Hi Curious,

    I’ve merged your thread with this one as it addresses what you’re after. The recommendations section does, too. Given current prices where you live I’d suggest the AOC AG271QG, which is one of the better AHVA (IPS-type) 144Hz models out there and generally a bit less expensive than the also very capable ViewSonic XG2703-GS.

    #45611

    Hi guys, I have read some already opened threads before posting my own.
    I am looking for a monitor for my computer and I get there, I loved your reviews.
    Besides it doesn’t exist the perfect monitor, I ask you to help me buying one. I would like a 27″ (not more than 32) with a 1440p resolution (I will have a gtx 1070 configuration). It would be nice having something as close as my budget can to 144hz (300/500 bucks) I am not a competitive gamer but I spend a lot of time playing, but i also watch many films, so the experience should be great both for performance and image quality. I was looking at the 27″ 1440p curved Samsung you recently reviewed , would do you suggest me something else that would fit better my needs (maybe saving some money if it’s not worth)? Thank you in advance

    #45615

    I’ve merged your thread with this one, but I’d also advise referencing this one.

    Given that you’re looking for a mixture of pleasing image quality (primarily?) and decent responsiveness without spending more than is necessary, I do feel the Samsung C27HG70 is an appropriate choice. I enjoyed gaming on it (and come from a more responsive Dell S2716DG) and feel the mixture of image quality and responsive is very nice. I also felt it delivered a good experience for watching films (I watch a fair bit of Netflix myself). You’re absolutely right to have identified that no monitor is perfect. Understanding that and setting your expectations realistically is the key to happiness in the modern monitor market. I see too many people fall into the trap of saying “this monitor has x problem, this one has y problem” and essentially being stuck with no valid choices.

    #46680

    I just tried high end TN panel and i want share my thoughts here. Its Benq Zowie XL2730 (27 inch 1440p 144hz freesync TN) Its probably one of the best TN panel on the market. So comparing with chg70 is fair i think. Its like high end TN vs high end VA. Both calibrated with spyder5+displaycal to 6500k 2.2 gamma and 120cd.

    First i wanna say 27 inch flat panel looks weird. Curved look better for this size i think. Flat panels should be 25 inch maximum.

    Chg70 out of the box very good, almost perfect. Benq out of the box very very bad.

    After calibration chg70 color accuracy is better. Benq color accuracy very good. Below average 1> delta. TN can not maintain its calibration perfectly and it has long warm up time.(Note: TN definitely not a color critical work monitor)

    Chg70 obviously better for picture quality. Higher contrast, quantum dots, better viewing angle. But difference is not huge and sometimes TN more preferable. VA has black crushed look, TN has overbright look.

    Chg70 image more relaxed and deep. TN too bright and flat.(same brightness) TN blacks not that bad. Black uniformity good. But TN whites really bad. Looks like brightness settings too high (not backlight).

    TN top 1/3 of the screen suffers color/gamma shifting(normal viewing angle) But generally its not noticeable really. You can notice it if you compare it side by side. Specially purple colors shifts a lot dont know why. Chg70 viewing angles not perfect but obviously better than TN.

    Motion clarity difference is really there. Chg70 with fast paced games is a mess if i compare it to TN panel and blur reduction mode much better with Benq. Fluid, sharp and clear. Benq feels like higher ppi.(Both 27 inch 1440p)(Both screen coating not good)

    Benq freesync works flawless. Chg70 freesync is just gimmick, not practical. (No adaptive overdrive, huge ghosting-overshoot issues, stuttering after long gaming session. Better leaving it off. More problems than benefits. Probably (dont know enough) a lot of va monitors suffers when it comes to adaptive sync. Including gsync variants.

    Some colors pale against chg70 because of quantum dots. But interestingly TN rgb colors has more punch. Red, green and blue more saturated when checking full screen dead pixel tests.

    TN 8 bit, VA 8bit+frc. Its hard to tell difference with color banding tests. I think skies has more color banding issue while gaming on Chg70.

    Contrast measurement: 660 for Benq, 1060 for chg70. Its obviously false reading. Spyder5 not that good lol.

    For games: Benq definitely better. (motion clarity, perfect freesync)
    For web browsing: Chg70 definitely better. (better whites)
    For movies: Chg70 better but Benq good too.
    Chg70 HDR very good for the price if you can find good HDR content.

    I think TN is safer bet. Its matured technology. VA needs more work. Too much qc issues. Short life span. Pixels dies or stucks. Im experienced va user lol 🙂 English is not my native langauge. I hope my words understandable enough. If i can try high end ips monitor i will add. For now its tn vs va.

    #46685

    I appreciate you sharing your detailed thoughts and I agree with a lot of what you are saying. I certainly understand what you are saying and the points you are making, so your English is not a problem. I would just add that the Spyder series is useless for contrast measurements, you’re correct. That’s why it is not used for that in our reviews. It simply can’t measure black luminances with sufficient accuracy to be used in this way.

    I’ve moved your post to a different thread [you are here] so it is more visible. It is a useful addition here given the models recently discussed here, too.

    #46761

    Greetings all, first time poster here.

    I began looking for a new monitor setup about three weeks ago, and have been reading/watching everything I can about current monitors.
    I’m currently on a Samsung S24A350H, and have been for about seven years, but it’s beginning to show its age so I started looking for a replacement.
    Now after a lot of reading, and subjective preference :), I came to to the conclusion that a 27″ 2560×1440 setup would be a nice place to be for the foreseeable future. I hope this setup will last me, like my current one.
    So I jotted down what I was after in a monitor:
    * 27″
    * 2560 x 1440 resolution (Also considered 1920 x 1080 with VSR to 2560 x 1440)
    * Freesync

    My main use will be games, I do no picture editing and such, I don’t really play fast paced shooters (OverWatch, CS:GO, Quake etc.) but I play quite a bit of games like DayZ, Witcher, Elder Scroll series & space games (Aliens, EvE, Elite Dangerous etc.)….. games that’ll feature a significant amount of night time play (with light sources) and games set in darker environments.
    Now after my initial reading it seemed like an IPS based monitor would be the way to go, but I have since found that with a lot of them you enter into the grand IPS panel lottery when you buy one. That said I have still kept Asus MG279Q & Acer XF270HU, which both use the same AUO panel(M270DAN02.X), on my shortlist. And if you can find a good example of them, they sound like really nice monitors. The Nixeus NX-EDG27 sounds like a nice example of the type, better QC, but they are close to impossible to find here in Europe.
    So I kept reading because I didn’t much fancy returning my new monitor half a dozen times…

    Now there are still some nice quality TN monitors being made out there, from reading, BenQ’s XL2730Z sound like one of the top ones, it also cost more or less the same as its IPS or VA peers.
    For VA panels I really fell for the design on the Samsungs, C27FG73 & C27HG70, love the way they look….. But based on the games I’ll be using them for and what I have been reading, I have niggling doubts they are the monitors for me, sadly.

    I have been reading a lot of your news, reviews & forum posts PCM2… really like your site, it’s been a fountain of info.
    I came across this POST saying that the C27HG70’s freesync is a gimmick and it’s not a gaming main monitor. Combine that with the overshoot and smearing issues from the review… raises a question on my part.
    Q: How much of that, can be “fixed” going forward by firmware updates?
    I ask because I can see from reading that Samsung has already improved the freesync range and such through the firmware, so can they also alleviate stuff like the overshoot and smearing, for C27FG73 & C27HG70… or is that just purely down to the worse pixel responsiveness on VA panels and is as it is?

    I’m not in a rush to upgrade, but from what I can read there’s nothing significant on the horizon for what I’m looking for.
    So I’d love some suggestions as to what you all think would be the monitor for me.

    My specs are as followes, for what it matters:
    * Asus Z97-Pro (WiFi ac.)
    * i5 4690K (will probably upgrade to a Ryzen towards next year).
    * 16GB DDR3
    * 2x R9 290 4GB Vapor-X [CrossFire] (I’m looking at a Navi upgrade, when it arrives)

    #46765

    Hi Minibjorn,

    We’ve explored FreeSync in detail in the review. I’ve explained some things to you by email, which you did not reply to. I am putting this out here for the benefit of others to read:

    Q: “Loved your review of the Samsung C27FG73 and HG70. But while reading about them it has come up that running the monitor on Ultimate (which is needed to have access to LFC), Ultimate also causes some of the overshoot and smearing that was observed during your review.

    Would it be possible for you to test the monitor running on standard to see if this is indeed the case. And if it is, would love to know the reason for this… what’s happening during the ultimate process that would cause those things.”

    A: “The monitor has overshoot and ‘smearing’ even when tested with an Nvidia GPU. It is down to the pixel responsiveness and occurs at a
    static refresh rate of 144Hz irrespective of FreeSync being active or not.

    We observed increased overshoot at lower refresh rates, with certain ranges appearing quite bad. This is explored in detail in the review. The issue with FreeSync being set to ‘Ultimate Engine’ is simply that the monitor is allowed to run at lower refresh rates than ‘Standard Engine’ as the frame rate drops. If you are seeing or reading reports of anything other than that, it is a firmware issue that didn’t affect our unit. We tested ‘Standard Engine’ extensively and the only thing that changed was the refresh rate range.”

    So there are two entirely seperate issues here. It is just that some users seem to have a poor understanding of how FreeSync works and what it can’t and can achieve. They also don’t appreciate that FreeSync models often suffer from poorly optimised pixel responsiveness for significantly lower refresh rates than the monitor’s native (144Hz in this case). That could be improved if the manufacturer could be bothered to re-tune the pixel overdrive properly for a wide range of refresh rates. But don’t hold your breath – it’s something that G-SYNC models are often a lot better at because of this careful tuning across the refresh rate spectrum. This is all explored in the review, from somebody with a very keen eye for such issues and a trenendous amount of experience with FreeSync monitors. Choose to ignore that wisdom at your peril.

    P.S. I wouldn’t agree that the Nixeus NX-EDG27 has ‘better QC’ than other competing models. I’ve sold a fair few of those via my website and the return rate is rather high. Don’t fall into the trap of seeing a greater volume of negative feedback for a more popular product and think that’s a good reflection of the state of play. It just reflects the fact the product is more popular and there is therefore a greater amount of feedback out there. And people are far more likely to post to report negative vs. positive things.

    #46768

    Hey PCM2

    Hmm a thank you and a small mail should have gone back out. If it didn’t I’ll say “Thanks” here… You helped settles a discussion we were having, someone was saying he saw less of the overshoot and smearing on standard engine mode.
    But I am not 100% clear on how he was testing, he stated FPS, engine mode, game & observations. But it’s a public discord and things quickly got kinda sidetracked to something else. It sounds like it could have been something on his end… or simply him seeing what he wanted maybe?

    As far as freesync goes, I think I understand what it’s suppose to do for us as users… Remove stuttering and tearing in the picture as a game flux, causing a mismatch, in fps compared to the screen refresh rate. As long as it’s within its range, it’s there to give a smoother visual ride.
    Would you say that unless I can maintain a high FPS, e.g. 120+, I would be better served with a fixed refresh monitor and capping my FPS… based on what you know of freesync?

    I’ve just heard many people claim they had more luck getting a NX-EDG27 that was good, than say a MG279Q… And I’m well aware that people tend to rather give a negative review than positive feedback, and also sample size plays in.
    But I’m sad to hear they are not better… then I won’t as keenly be looking for more stock here in Europe.

    I admit that I’ve been reading so much about monitors the past two week, that even with trying to keep track of it all, in my head and on paper… things blur a little together and mistakes happen.
    I’m be going at this with the mantra of “No monitor is perfect”, and have been looking for the monitor that strikes a good balanced for the stuff I’d like.
    I’ll be going to the shop and trying to see some of them in action before I decide.

    #46769

    I didn’t receive your email unfortunately. I did think it odd that you would post here on the same sort of topic without replying. So never mind, a technical glitch and no harm done.

    For me personally, I find FreeSync (and G-SYNC) very beneficial because I’m sensitive to tearing and stuttering. But I also crave the fluidity that comes from high frame rates (and appropriately high refresh rates). So I love the technology for smoothing out the fluctuations in frame rate, but I would still make sacrifices in my game’s graphics options to try to keep the frame rate as high as possible. On a 144Hz monitor, I dislike dipping down into double digits. Other users have different tolerances to that sort of thing, it all depends really. To add insult to injury, there are models (like the Samsung ones discussed here, but they’re certainly not alone) that are just not nicely tuned for lower refresh rates. And you then have some potentially obnoxious overshoot thrown into the mix as well. For me that’s just another stark reminder that my frame rate is lower than I’d like, not that I need such a slap in the face personally. 😉

    Frame rate limiters can work okay if you manage to maintain a very solid frame rate that matches the refresh rate or a multiple of it. Otherwise you’re going to get tearing or stuttering. And it is very tricky to maintain that specific frame rate even with a limiter, unless you’re able to run said game at an extremely high frame rate and are capping it significantly below that. Even then there are sometimes small fluctuations due to the imperfect nature of frame rate limiters. FreeSync adds a lot of flexibility and is simply a better way of doing things.

    Oh and you’re dead right that no monitor is perfect. That’s a lesson that all prospective monitor buyers must learn., to avoid a continuous string of disappointment.

    #46770

    Hmm… I’ll keep looking at Freesync monitors then.

    What would you say it currently the “best” 27″ 2560 x 1440 freesync monitor out there? I’ll so bold as to ask… 🙂 as you don’t have one on your recommended list.
    If I’m looking for decent/good picture quality and with good mechanics behind it?

    If I put the Samsungs to the side for now… for their response issues.
    What I have on my list, that I’m looking at.

    Asus MG279Q
    Acer XF270HU
    BenQ XL2730Z
    NX-EDG27

    I think all three IPS monitors use a variant of the AUO panel, so based on my reading, and what you have said, they are equally a lottery, still…
    The BenQ ia a TN, but from reviews it has a true 8bit panel and have quite good colours.

    I have also played with the idea of getting a really nice 27″ 1920 x 1080 and VSR it to 2560 x 1440… I know it’s not the same as true WQHD, but should still give me a very nice image.

    #46773

    The MG279Q is limited to 90Hz with FreeSync, so might as well not have it. The XF270HU has broken overdrive with FreeSync, which is not ideal. And the NX-EDG27 has the same QC issues as all of these in my view, plus is difficult to get outside of the US as you noted. The BenQ XL2730(Z) is a step above in terms of quality control, responsiveness and the lack of ‘IPS glow’. It doesn’t have IPS-level colour consistency, although arguably the factory calibration is better and OSD more flexible than the IPS-type options. Plus it has a good FreeSync implementation.

    And that reminds me, I’ve recommended it to quite a few users recently and it does have a lot going for it, with a solid performance compared to competing models. So I should really add a recommended badge to it (which I will).

    #46774

    Which one of these two are better for gaming and overall use? LG 32GK850G or ACER Predator Z321QU?
    Both are 32″, 1440p, 144hz, Gsync. Acer has curved screen, LG has flat screen.

    My store is offering discount for LG 32GK850G. I can get it for for 780€ (previous price was 920€). Z321QU costs 690€. Does any of you know why Acer is so much cheaper? Are they using cheaper parts?

    #46775

    You’ll have to wait for our upcoming review of the LG 32GK850G for a proper assessment. TFT Central should also be reviewing it shortly; we’re still waiting for review samples to be sent.

    As for the Acer Z321QU, it uses the same CELL (panel without backlight) as the ASUS XG32VQ, AOC AG322QCX and Samsung C32HG70. So those reviews are a good starting point and will give you a decent idea of what to expect.

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