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AOC Q2781PQ IPS/QHD Monitor Review

OSD Setup & Calibration

AOC sticks with its tried-and-true OSD layout for the Q2781PQ. You can move it around the screen if you wish, but we like its default position at the bottom-center. Options are divided into six sub-menus, and like the styling, they are minimal. You get everything you need and nothing you don’t.

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The Luminance menu features six picture modes — AOC calls them Eco modes — that are task-specific. Standard is the default and offers decent accuracy, although whites are a tad blue and gamma runs a little dark. Other options here include three gamma presets, dynamic contrast, and an overdrive with Weak, Medium, Strong, and Off settings. Strong creates some visible ghosting, so we left it on Medium for a good level of blur reduction.

The Image Setup menu is only active for analog signals from the VGA port. It offers clock, phase, position, and sharpness sliders.

In Color Setup there are three color temp presets plus an sRGB mode. It locks out gamma, contrast, and brightness adjustments and fixes output at 270 nits. It offers a little more accuracy than the default Standard mode, but the best performance is found in User, where you can adjust RGB sliders and select a better gamma curve. More on that below. Here also are DCB modes, which attempt to improve specific colors like skin, grass, and sky. Use them for personal preference only. They won’t bring the Q2781PQ any closer to Rec.709/sRGB standards.

Picture Boost is a feature unique to AOC. It creates a window on the screen where you can adjust brightness and contrast independently of the rest of the image to focus on a particular zone. The frame can be sized and moved to any position.

OSD Setup has the usual language, position, timeout, and position controls. We like the default setting, although removing transparency makes the menu easier to see. You'll also find a break reminder, which lets you know when you’ve been working for more than an hour.

The final menu, Extra, has an input selector, off timer (up to 24 hours), wide or 4:3 aspect options, DDC/CI, and a factory reset. You can also view input signal information.

Calibration

We measured both the default Standard mode and the sRGB color temp and determined that both had room for improvement. Since you can’t adjust the latter, we returned to Standard and selected the User color temp option. The RGB sliders start at center-range, which means we could dial in grayscale with no reduction in contrast. The controls are very precise. We also felt Gamma 1 was too dark in tone, so we changed the preset to Gamma 2. Tests showed it tracked 2.2 almost perfectly and improved color saturation and luminance to near-professional levels of accuracy. There is a lot of potential here, and if you don’t calibrate, we suggest trying the settings below.

AOC Q2781PQ Calibration Settings
Picture ModeStandard
Brightness 200cd/m252
Brightness 120cd/m212
Brightness 100cd/m23
Contrast50
Gamma2
Color Temp UserRed 50, Green 46, Blue 45

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  • SteveRNG
    I get why people call out the monitor makers when they call a monitor bezel-free and it's not. And I get why people who do multiple-monitor gaming would want bezel-free. But until the display actually has NO bezel, does bezel thickness matter at all? It seems that if there is any bezel, it might as well be an inch wide and help prevent backlight bleed.
    Reply
  • dstarr3
    19819450 said:
    I get why people call out the monitor makers when they call a monitor bezel-free and it's not. And I get why people who do multiple-monitor gaming would want bezel-free. But until the display actually has NO bezel, does bezel thickness matter at all? It seems that if there is any bezel, it might as well be an inch wide and help prevent backlight bleed.

    Generally, I agree. There's no functional point if there is more than zero bezel thickness. But I'll admit, a thin bezel does just look better aesthetically. If I had to choose between two monitors that were equal in every way, except one had a thinner bezel, I'd go with the thinner bezel.
    Reply
  • drwho1
    To me not having speakers is a plus since I like to use my own set of speakers... real speakers. Overall I will keep this in mind when ready to upgrade.
    Reply
  • MasterMace
    hoping for an ips 120hz 4k in the 24 and 27 brackets
    Reply
  • 2Be_or_Not2Be
    I personally would rather have downward-facing inputs. It puts less stress on the connector.
    Reply
  • 2Be_or_Not2Be
    19821946 said:
    hoping for an ips 120hz 4k in the 24 and 27 brackets

    Not sure I would want 4K in a 24" monitor. That would make for some really tiny text/icons. I would only go with 4K in 27"/28" and above sizes.
    Reply
  • photonboy
    2BE_OR_NOT2BE,
    I'm not sure I agree that "downward-facing inputs" are better. With this monitor the cables can come from the back of the desk like you would a DVD player. With the downwards style you'd be forced to bend the cable more thus putting MORE stress on the connector not less.

    Personally, I prefer to have a mount that lets you hide and tie off the video cable in the rear, middle area.
    Reply