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Results: Grayscale Tracking And Gamma Response

Asus VG248QE: A 24-Inch, 144 Hz Gaming Monitor Under $300

The majority of monitors, especially newer models, display excellent grayscale tracking (even at stock settings). It’s important that the color of white be consistently neutral at all light levels from darkest to brightest. Grayscale performance impacts color accuracy with regard to the secondary colors: cyan, magenta, and yellow. Since computer monitors typically have no color or tint adjustment, accurate grayscale is key.

Because of the issue we discovered with the Contrast control, we feel Standard is the best mode to use, regardless of whether you calibrate or not. We also recommend the User color temperature preset, even if you don’t adjust it.

The VG248QE’s grayscale runs towards blue at every brightness level. All measurement points have visible errors. Fortunately, blue errors are the least detrimental to image quality. The white point error we really don’t want to see is green, and there’s obviously no problem there.

The tracking is fairly linear, so it should dial in well with calibration.

Aside from slight aberrations at 0, 10, and 100 percent brightness, this is an excellent chart and a significant improvement over the stock configuration. All the Delta E numbers are below two, except for 10 percent brightness. Forty through 80 are well under one.

Let’s bring our comparison group back into the mix.

The VG248QE is on the high side of average in this test. HP's E271i is exceptional, while the majority of monitors tested do have some visible grayscale error out of the box.

Things look much better after calibration.

At a Delta E of 1.3, Asus demonstrates excellent calibrated performance. Even the most particular gamers will be more than satisfied with the grayscale accuracy of this monitor. Speed isn't its only strength. Rather, Asus offers solid performance in all areas.

Gamma Response

Gamma is the measurement of luminance levels at every step in the brightness range from 0 to 100 percent. This is important because poor gamma can either crush detail at various points or wash it out, making the entire picture appear flat and dull. Correct gamma produces a more three-dimensional image, with a greater sense of depth and realism. Meanwhile, incorrect gamma can negatively affect image quality, even in monitors with high contrast ratios.

In the gamma charts below, the yellow line represents 2.2, which is the most widely accepted standard for television, film, and computer graphics production. The closer the white measurement trace comes to 2.2, the better.

The VG248QE doesn’t have a gamma control. But apparently it doesn’t need one. The measurement trace stays nice and flat until 90 percent brightness, where it takes a bit of a dip. This is a slight error, and is only 1.34 cd/m2 higher than the target value. One thing we noted during the testing: at higher brightness settings, the gamma dip at 90 percent increases a little. For the best gamma performance, you’ll want to stick to around 200 cd/m2 max output.

Here’s our test group again for the gamma comparisons.

At a value range of .35, the VG248QE is squarely in the middle of this pack, and also mid-pack among the screens we've tested this year. In short, gamma tracking is very good (well below the point where it negatively impacts image depth or detail).

We calculate gamma deviation by simply expressing the difference from 2.2 as a percentage.

A variation of 1.36 percent puts Asus in second place today, and fifth overall. Numbers like these mean the VG248QE has no gamma issues to speak of. It tracks a 2.2 value well as long as you work around a max brightness level of 200 cd/m2 or less.

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  • 3 Hide
    CaptainTom , October 2, 2013 10:04 PM
    I gotta wonder if 1 ms vs 5 ms really makes a difference...
  • 4 Hide
    ff6shadow , October 2, 2013 11:45 PM
    I own this. Bought when it was first available. Great monitor for gaming. I use 2x GTX Titans with it.
  • -7 Hide
    iam2thecrowe , October 2, 2013 11:56 PM
    i don't like the sound of this dithering BS, i guess that's why its cheap....
  • 1 Hide
    SWEETMUSK , October 3, 2013 12:08 AM
    if I have $300 dollars I will not buy for 24 inch "TN" screen
    IPS is much better then TN
  • 0 Hide
    Axonn , October 3, 2013 1:37 AM
    People who think 144 Hz is more important than an 8-bit panel are in for a big, big fail.
  • 4 Hide
    ryude , October 3, 2013 2:03 AM
    This monitor uses PWM (Pulse Width Modulation) for the backlight, which causing flickering. The only 144hz monitor that does not use PWM is the BenQ XL2420TE.
  • 2 Hide
    Plusthinking Iq , October 3, 2013 2:25 AM
    they only sell BenQ XL2420T version in my country, so i bought the asus for the double pwm hz. pwm, the scourge og the lcd monitor.
  • -1 Hide
    CraigN , October 3, 2013 5:07 AM
    ryude - yes, it uses PWM, however, as an owner of one of these monitors, I have not noticed any flickering at all. It's a really solid performing monitor. That same PWM comes in real handy when running in Lightboost mode for even more reductions to input lag.

    CaptainTom, 1ms makes a huge difference over 5ms. I didn't think it would at first until I bought one of these. Next to my old 24" HDTV that was my monitor for awhile, the difference is insane.

  • -1 Hide
    CraigN , October 3, 2013 5:08 AM
    PS , Christian, your SmartBuy award photo at the end of the article is the wrong ASUS monitor ;)  Also, would you guys mind releasing the ICC profile you guys calibrated for your tests?
  • -1 Hide
    Turik , October 3, 2013 5:11 AM
    The final picture is not of the VG248QE?
  • 0 Hide
    Turik , October 3, 2013 5:13 AM
    As someone with a high quality 1440p IPS and 2 of these monitors, for most gaming I prefer these. For World of Warcraft or other MMOs where screen space is a luxury, it's hard to give up the high-res IPS, and the color quality is noticable, but with a proper ICC profile and some tweaking, it's a good looking monitor.

    ICC profile is use is here:
  • -4 Hide
    ubercake , October 3, 2013 5:17 AM
    The thing is contrast is lacking big time on IPS monitors less than $500. So who cares about color accuracy if you can't see all the shades? Cheap IPS monitors are not only slow because of inherent input lag, but also a fail when it comes to contrast.

    These high refresh rate monitors offer an incredible performance boost for first-person shooters if you have video cards that can produce frame rates close to the high refresh rates (or higher than 60Hz consistently). I've tried 1440p 60Hz monitors and can't stand the lower refresh. I've tried 60Hz surround setups and can't stand the low refresh. Once you go to these monitors, you develop a need for them. Nothing with lower refresh rates compares any longer. If you've never had it, you don't miss it and don't know what you're missing.

    If you don't have the kind of GPU power to consistently get you beyond the 60fps mark at 1080p, 60Hz monitors are the way to go. I still wouldn't settle for cheap IPS monitors with crappy contrast ratios though. For shooters, the input lag is also a terrible characteristic of the cheap IPS monitor.
  • 0 Hide
    finder , October 3, 2013 5:27 AM
    and it's backlight flickering as hell
  • 5 Hide
    twztechman , October 3, 2013 5:43 AM
    I own this. Bought when it was first available. Great monitor for gaming. I use 2x GTX Titans with it.

    2 Titans for 1980x1080 resolution? That's a bit silly. You have spent $2000 for video cards and you are gaming on one 1980x1080 24 inch monitor!
    You should have at least 3 of these monitors for a surround set-up.
  • 0 Hide
    CraigN , October 3, 2013 5:47 AM
    Turik - I'm aware of the one at, as well as the one included with the disk. I was just wondering if it was (possible) for them to release their post-calibrated icc. I have no idea how monitor calibrators work (I didn't need to alter much on my personal VG248QE to be satisfied, but that doesn't mean it couldn't be better) so I just thought it couldn't hurt to ask.

    Also - does anyone own one of these and notice that opening Pictures come up darker/dimmer than they look as thumbnails or in image preview??
  • 8 Hide
    BigMack70 , October 3, 2013 5:57 AM
    I just wonder if/when we'll ever get a panel like this at high resolution (1440p/4k), because I'm done with 1080p.

    ASUS... could you pretty please make us a 144 Hz 1440p IPS screen ??????
  • 7 Hide
    ubercake , October 3, 2013 6:06 AM
    I just wonder if/when we'll ever get a panel like this at high resolution (1440p/4k), because I'm done with 1080p.

    ASUS... could you pretty please make us a 144 Hz 1440p IPS screen ??????

    I second the 'pretty please'.
  • 0 Hide
    moogleslam , October 3, 2013 6:48 AM
    If I understand things correctly, if your monitor updates faster than the frame rate pumped out by your graphics card, you don't have screen tearing anymore, and therefore no longer need vsync?
  • 0 Hide
    jdon , October 3, 2013 6:51 AM
    I've looked at IPS panels and TN panels in some depth, and found that other than the viewing angle, I'm not able to perceive much difference. Then my fiancee laughed at me and said, "You really are THAT colorblind, huh?" ....It actually kind of makes me glad that I can appreciate the better frame rates without being disappointed by the lack of color depth!
  • 3 Hide
    vpnuser , October 3, 2013 7:02 AM
    I own one of these as well as a 27" Dell 1440p IPS panel, and I prefer this one for gaming. 120hz with 2D lightboost has 0 ghosting. Sure the color is crap compared to the IPS, but what good is color when it looks like 24fps movie blur in games? Quoted from my girlfriend, who can't tell the difference between 1080p and 720p movies, within 5 minutes of me setting up the monitor ; "That's really smooth."

    I would prefer the best of both worlds, but I don't think current graphics cards are quite up to the task. (At least not for less than a $2500 machine) Current IPS panels out there can pull the hz, but can't match the response times just yet.

    Add in the fact that the industry will be pushing for 4k soon, and you can kiss 120hz goodbye for a while.
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