HP Omen 32q 165 Hz gaming monitor review: Incredible value, jumbo screen

A 32-inch IPS QHD gaming monitor with 165 Hz, Adaptive-Sync, HDR and wide gamut color.

HP Omen 32q
(Image: © Tom's Hardware)

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Uncalibrated – Maximum Backlight Level

Does a 32-inch monitor have to hit 400 nits? Not for good SDR rendering, but the overhead is useful in HDR mode and for the use of the backlight strobe. With its prodigious output, you can enjoy the Omen 32q’s full brightness potential for all content. Nearly 400 nits is a lot for a screen this big. It’ll light up your whole room if you max the slider.

I expect a last-place finish for any IPS panel put up against VA monitors. But the Omen 32q’s contrast is a bit below average. Fortunately, its gamma is accurate because this is less than the 1,000:1 I see from typical IPS monitors. I’m slightly disappointed, but since everything else about it is so good, I can forgive.

After Calibration to 200 nits

Calibration doesn’t visibly change contrast. If this is your most important metric, VA is clearly the way to go. Note that these values are almost exactly the same in the Standard and Native picture modes.

ANSI contrast is at least consistent with the static result, even if that number isn’t terribly high. There are no quality control issues to report here.

Test Takeaway: While the Omen 32q has more light output than other 32-inch QHD panels, its contrast is below average. Since most competitors use VA panels, they have a huge advantage anyway. And the HP has other superior attributes that you’ll soon see.

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Christian Eberle
Contributing Editor

Christian Eberle is a Contributing Editor for Tom's Hardware US. He's a veteran reviewer of A/V equipment, specializing in monitors. Christian began his obsession with tech when he built his first PC in 1991, a 286 running DOS 3.0 at a blazing 12MHz. In 2006, he undertook training from the Imaging Science Foundation in video calibration and testing and thus started a passion for precise imaging that persists to this day. He is also a professional musician with a degree from the New England Conservatory as a classical bassoonist which he used to good effect as a performer with the West Point Army Band from 1987 to 2013. He enjoys watching movies and listening to high-end audio in his custom-built home theater and can be seen riding trails near his home on a race-ready ICE VTX recumbent trike. Christian enjoys the endless summer in Florida where he lives with his wife and Chihuahua and plays with orchestras around the state.

  • mwm2010
    I have an HP Omen 27Q, and I wasn't at all surprised to see that this monitor is basically the same as mine, but with gsync and 32 inches. Still super impressed though.
  • idrisdroid
    why the hdr contrast is mesured this high?
    i have an issue with this, since you don't explain what was used to achieve this. i have an idée, it is dynamic back lighting, what it mean that you will never see dark image with high ligt in the image. and never a dark earia when the rest of the image is bright
    this is very important to ,notice