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Acer Predator XB273U NVbmiiprzx Review: Speedster With Accurate Colors

A 170 Hz, 1440p VA panel that pops

Acer Predator XB273U
(Image: © Acer)

The XB273U NVbmiiprzx includes a factory calibration which delivers low out-of-box errors in the Standard picture mode. With a few tweaks though, it achieves professional level accuracy.

Grayscale and Gamma Tracking

Our grayscale and gamma tests use Calman calibration software from Portrait Displays. We describe our grayscale and gamma tests in detail here.

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Acer Predator XB273U

(Image credit: Portrait Displays Calman)
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Acer Predator XB273U

(Image credit: Portrait Displays Calman)
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Acer Predator XB273U

(Image credit: Portrait Displays Calman)

The XB273U’s initial test run shows a slight red tint visible from 80-100% brightness. Other measured errors are below the visible threshold, which is represented by the horizontal green line depicting an error of 3 Delta E (dE). Therefore, you could certainly enjoy this monitor’s image without calibrating it. Gamma, meanwhile, runs a tiny bit light as the brightness level rises, but this too is a minor error.

After calibration (2nd chart above), the grayscale error is well below the 3dE visible threshold. All values are under 1dE, impressive performance. Gamma is unchanged by calibration, but we preferred the image at the 2.4 preset. You can choose either 2.2 or 2.4 without affecting other picture parameters. Some games might look better at 2.2. It’s entirely up to your preference.

If you choose the XB273U’s sRGB color gamut,  the only thing you can tweak is brightness because the other image controls are grayed out. The color temperature measures slightly warm, but errors are all below the visible level of 3dE. Gamma tracks almost perfectly with 2.2 with only tiny dips at 10 and 90% brightness. These errors can’t be seen by the naked eye.

Comparisons

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Acer Predator XB273U

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)
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Acer Predator XB273U

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)
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Acer Predator XB273U

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)
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Acer Predator XB273U

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)

The XB273U takes third place in the default grayscale test. 2.72dE is just below the visible threshold where one would see anything but a neutral white point. Only 80-100% brightness looks slightly warm. After an easy calibration, the error is just 0.51dE, which is as good or better than any professional screen. As you can see, all the monitors post a solid result here.

The XB273’s gamma isn’t quite as tight as the others but is still fairly linear. We chose the 2.4 preset out of visual preference. Both 2.2 and 2.4 measure pretty well, but 2.4 looked better in the games we played and when watching video content. The 4.09% deviation is about the same at either setting.

Color Gamut Accuracy

Our color gamut and volume testing use Portrait Displays’ Calman software. For details on our color gamut testing and volume calculations, click here.

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Acer Predator XB273U

(Image credit: Acer Predator XB273U)
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Acer Predator XB273U

(Image credit: Acer Predator XB273U)
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Acer Predator XB273U

(Image credit: Acer Predator XB273U)

The XB273U NVbmiiprzx is also very close to the mark in our color gamut test. Without calibration (1st chart), it has no visible errors when compared to the DCI-P3 spec. Green is slightly undersaturated, like nearly all extended color monitors. And there are tiny hue errors in magenta and yellow.

Calibration fixes these issues and adds a bit of red saturation. Though technically oversaturated for SDR content, color presentation is pleasing to the eye.

If you need an sRGB mode, Acer has you covered with an even smaller 1.54dE average error level. That qualifies it for color-critical work. Only magenta and blue are a little undersaturated in the 3rd chart above, but these errors are invisible to the naked eye.

Comparisons

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Acer Predator XB273U

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)
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Acer Predator XB273U

(Image credit: Tom's Hardware)

The XB273U NVbmiiprzx comes out on top in our color gamut error test. All monitors are calibrated and measured against the DCI-P3 reference. Even without calibration, the Predator would measure better than two of the calibrated screens. This is excellent performance.

Performance in the gamut volume test is also quite good. 88.73% DCI-P3 coverage is a little above average among the extended color monitor’s we’ve reviewed. This group of screens includes two of the most colorful monitors available, the MAG274QRF-QD and the Viotek GFI27DBXA. But the XB273U delivers plenty of bold hues that look good in both SDR and HDR modes. With an ICC profile, you can use it for color-critical work in DC-P3 and sRGB modes.

Christian Eberle
Christian Eberle is a Contributing Editor for Tom's Hardware US. He's a veteran reviewer of A/V equipment, specializing in monitors.
  • keith12
    Jeez. And I thought Intel had a messed up naming convention. This NVbmiiprzx , GSbmiiprzx and GXbmiipruzx as model differentiators!! Wow! Where do they get their marketing teams from!! :ROFLMAO:

    Okay, I get NV/GS/GX, but the rest!
    Reply
  • brandonjclark
    If you're looking for a great {near}top-tier monitor check out the Dell 3220DGF!

    It's 165hz, 32" VA Panel with amazing blacks, gsync compatible, and comes with the amazing Dell Display Manager software. I'm loving it!
    Reply
  • Spielwurfel
    keith12 said:
    Jeez. And I thought Intel had a messed up naming convention. This NVbmiiprzx , GSbmiiprzx and GXbmiipruzx as model differentiators!! Wow! Where do they get their marketing teams from!! :ROFLMAO:

    Okay, I get NV/GS/GX, but the rest!

    The joke is real

    funny/comments/j5pezfView: https://www.reddit.com/r/funny/comments/j5pezf/computer_monitors/
    Reply
  • dugt
    Admin said:
    The Acer Predator XB273U NVbmiiprzx gaming monitor delivers 170 Hz and G-Sync in a 1440p IPS panel. It’s highly accurate and worth considering for any high-performance gaming system.

    Acer Predator XB273U NVbmiiprzx Review: Speedster With Accurate Colors : Read more
    According to the review it seems this monitor should have gotten a score higher than 4 stars. The Asus ROG Strix XG27AQ got 4.5 stars and it is $50 cheaper. Maybe that is why it got 4.5 stars. On the other hand, the XG27AQ has, "...Superb image with one of the best dynamic contrast features we’ve seen. "

    But this Acer has "VisionCare and a TUV Rheinland Eyesafe certification. This takes the form of a low blue light mode and a room light sensor, which can vary brightness and color temperature to better match ambient room light and reduce user eye fatigue. ...The NV is also a 10-bit panel." The Asus is 8-bit. This is a tough decision for me. The Acer doesn't seem to have a manual and the Acer does. That is significant.
    Reply