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Budget gaming monitors walk a fine line in balancing image quality with video processing. It’s easy to get from premium and mid-priced screens, but the challenge is greater in the extreme value category. The gaming experience relies on speed and responsiveness most, but you won't be having fun if the image is flat and lifeless.
The AOC C24G1A certainly delivers on image quality. It’s one of the most accurate monitors I’ve tested out of the box. It does not require calibration, but the image rivals a professional screen if you apply a few tweaks. Contrast is the star with over 4,000:1 available. That’s four times what one typically sees from an IPS panel. You'll need an OLED or a Mini LED display to play in that dynamic range arena any other way. And that certainly won’t happen for $150. The C24G1A also matches more expensive displays with its color gamut volume, which tops 88% of DCI-P3. While wide gamuts are becoming less expensive and easier to find, it’s still impressive that AOC includes it here.
My only complaint is the C24G1A’s weak overdrive. Undershoot results in black ringing and trail artifacts, reducing motion resolution. And the panel response is a bit slower than other 165 Hz monitors I’ve tested. I found some relief in the MBR blur reduction feature. Though this backlight strobe showed some phasing artifacts, it made fast-moving games look a little better. But can you find better video processing for $150? I doubt it.
I will always recommend users buy the fastest monitor they can afford. The AOC C24G1A delivers a very high price/performance ratio with an honest and usable 165 Hz for $150. The bonus is stunning contrast, vivid color and pro-level accuracy. If you want a lot of gaming monitor for relatively little money, you should check it out.
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Christian Eberle is a Contributing Editor for Tom's Hardware US. He's a veteran reviewer of A/V equipment, specializing in monitors.
i have the original C24G1 and love it. well worth the $160 i paid for it. this updated one currently $119 on amazon is a steal.Reply
thinking hard about ordering 2 of them to replace my mis-matched dual screens i have now.. :)
This is an insane monitor, I am tempted to buy two as well, as 1080p is still the gaming sweet spot unless you need extra visibility of an ultra wide.Reply
A VERY long time ago I learned that once you get a bigger monitor, you can NEVER go back. But I suppose not everyone agrees with that as I often see TINY screens in shops and what's more, in reviews like this one.Reply
But then, I also don't play games on my laptop, ever...while laptop gaming is totally a thing elsewhere...iieeeuw. I guess I'll just stick to being amazed at what people do and refrain from judging them. :)
I'm curious what the experience would be with a 165hz monitor for $120.00 from AOC. I bought into the 'cheap' monitor buys going with ViewSonic VX2418C ($130.00) and being humorously disappointed with the reality, I sorta laughed it off, "Oh well, you get what you pay for." Muddy details (even after adusting), game controller function knob broke and color for Display Port fritzed after 8 months (character flesh in games turned green. I RMA'd it two weeks ago. You can't adjust the hight, side to side and tilt but you buy it knowing that. Packaging was sort of suspect, small, minimum styrofoam, thin, unbleached corigated box, was least expensive packing I've seen for a monitor.Reply
Someone tell me they bought it and it's picturesque quality is pristine and refined. panel controls are easy to naviage and repsonds to shaders and is without washed color.