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AOC U2879VF 28-inch Ultra HD FreeSync Monitor Review

A 28-inch TN screen is the cheapest way to put Ultra HD on the desktop. Today, we're looking at a new example from AOC: the U2879VF. It includes FreeSync for gaming enthusiasts and a factory calibration for the professional user.

Conclusion

After all the benchmarks and hands-on tests are done, we find that the AOC U2879VF achieves all its design goals. While FreeSync may push it into the gaming category, it isn't a sharply focused product like the Acer XB280HK. The operating range is too small and input lag is too great.

AOC calls it a professional monitor and includes a factory-certified calibration with supporting data sheet to that effect. But we wouldn't place it high in that category either. In terms of accuracy it does extremely well in our tests provided one chooses the sRGB mode in the color temp menu. It can be calibrated manually but that won't unlock its full potential. The only drawback of that preset is its fixed output level. That didn't bother us too much though, being that it's only 28cd/m2 brighter than our preferred 200cd/m2.

Contrast is roughly equal to the other 28-inch TN Ultra HD displays we've tested. This makes sense since AOC is using the same Innolux panel seen in every other monitor of this format. This particular example seems to have slightly better viewing angles than the competition but otherwise, image quality is pretty much the same. The sRGB mode gives it a decent advantage in color accuracy though.

For general use with some requirement of color accuracy and casual gaming, the U2879VF is a solid choice. Like all AOC products, it represents excellent value. In fact, among all Ultra HD displays, it's one of the least-expensive. Considering that it has FreeSync, uniformity compensation and extra-accurate color, it's probably one of the best values going right now. And don't forget that HDMI 2.0 input—not many screens are shipping with that version at this writing.

About the only things we could wish for is a stand with more adjustments, a larger FreeSync range and better input lag. But these are minor flaws when you're paying less than $450 for an Ultra HD screen. It isn't stellar in any one area but it checks nearly every major box with credible performance. And it comes packaged in a chassis of good build quality.

For decent all-around performance, thoughtful design, excellent out-of-box color accuracy and the addition of FreeSync, we're giving the AOC U2879VF our Tom's Editor Approved Award.

MORE: Best Computer MonitorsMORE: Display Calibration 101

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Christian Eberle is a Contributing Editor for Tom's Hardware, covering Monitors.

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  • Urzu1000
    I've been using this monitor for month or so now, and I have to say, I'm very pleased with my purchase. I got it on sale though, so it was a bit cheaper.
    Reply
  • gaborbarla
    Please call me when these monitors are no longer only 60Hz. I still much prefer a 1440p monitor with 144Hz over 4k on 60Hz for gaming.
    Reply
  • Dynomite54
    Please call me when these monitors are no longer only 60Hz. I still much prefer a 1440p monitor with 144Hz over 4k on 60Hz for gaming.
    I can I agree with that for the people with better eye sight its blurry if its 60Hz but not if its 144Hz or 120Hz.
    Reply
  • sillynilly
    While I understand that 60 FPS may be the top for high end gaming rigs for this resolution - that is in some games, not all. I agree 2160 at 60Hz is, for me, a step back from 1440 at 120Hz+ since my rig can easily push higher FPS on many games I play regularly.
    Reply
  • masterofevil22
    I'm currently rocking 3 1440p monitors in Eyefinity and I love them for Gaming at 7680x1440p. They are 60hz panels, but I can OC'd them to 75hz. It's not easy getting 75fps at that res maxed out tho... 11.2 million pixels is no joke, but the FEEL of them wrapping around you is incredible & it's widely supported (hehe) by most games. I'd highly recommend anyone giving it a try. I've got some footage up on XBnPC if you all care to check it out.
    Reply
  • milk_inc
    While I understand that 60 FPS may be the top for high end gaming rigs for this resolution - that is in some games, not all. I agree 2160 at 60Hz is, for me, a step back from 1440 at 120Hz+ since my rig can easily push higher FPS on many games I play regularly.
    Well right now is not a video card that can be played at 100+fps on 4k with ultra settings, even the 1080 as good it's, not reach those frames on 4k of course and AAA games.
    The monitor is for the present 4k at 60hz even the prices it's good for the spec.
    The speed of hz and the resolution are two different things, of course you will get higher hz at lower resolution. In a near future it will be 4k with 120hz or 144hz, coz 4k will be standard for 5 years as 1080p and 1440 or qhd will just be a transitition as was 720p.
    Reply
  • photonboy
    *Freesync doesn't work well at 40 to 60Hz.

    You need 2.5X minimum ratio for asynchronous mode (i.e. 30 Hz to 75Hz) or you have no support below 40Hz.

    With the range being so low you are popping in and out of the smoother asynchronous mode any time you go above or below this. If it's setup for VSYNC ON you'll go from smooth gameplay to STUTTERING below 40FPS (or screen tear if setup for VSYNC OFF).

    Same goes for above 60FPS (though I think you can force a Global cap but you have to experiment with that and it may have to be a bit below 60FPS).

    *If you have a 30Hz to 144Hz it's far better. Not only is it hard to go over 144FPS, but for demanding games (or sudden drops even if good FPS) you CAN stay in asynchronous mode.

    The REASON is that AMD has no module like GSYNC does. So if you drop to 29FPS then the drivers tell the GPU to send each frame 2X so the monitor gets 58FPS. You still see it as 29FPS but a SMOOTH 29FPS because you stay in asynchronous mode so the monitor draws each frame as it gets it.

    There is a small DELAY in doing this so you can't get by with just 2X the range. So again, for the 40Hz to 60Hz range if you drop to 39FPS it doesn't work.

    **IMO they shouldn't even sell Freesync monitors like this. If you don't understand what's going on you're going to have an inconsistent experience with many games being smoother then stutter or tear constantly.
    Reply
  • sillynilly
    17989601 said:
    While I understand that 60 FPS may be the top for high end gaming rigs for this resolution - that is in some games, not all. I agree 2160 at 60Hz is, for me, a step back from 1440 at 120Hz+ since my rig can easily push higher FPS on many games I play regularly.
    Well right now is not a video card that can be played at 100+fps on 4k with ultra settings, even the 1080 as good it's, not reach those frames on 4k of course and AAA games.
    The monitor is for the present 4k at 60hz even the prices it's good for the spec.
    The speed of hz and the resolution are two different things, of course you will get higher hz at lower resolution. In a near future it will be 4k with 120hz or 144hz, coz 4k will be standard for 5 years as 1080p and 1440 or qhd will just be a transitition as was 720p.

    Umm, ya? That's the underlying point of my entire post! To expand, I am not willing to spend money on a monitor that is "for now" ok, when I find the 1440 experience (on IPS panels) so good. Since I run 27 now, why go a minor increase for a 4K panel that won't look as good while gaming, i.e. low frame rates? And to get even more specific - I am team green so I wouldn't buy an FS monitor in the first place! :lol:

    Reply
  • Shankovich
    TN panel.........
    Reply
  • Gurg
    I have an earlier version AOC U2870VQE 28" 4K LED Monitor I bought for roughly the same price.. I really like it. This was an upgrade from another brand 1440 monitor that was returned under warranty for too many dead pixels. This AOC has no bad pixels. Mostly play Total War games with 2x980sli. For reference my everyday overclocked Firestrike Ultra graphics score is around 6650 with max of around 7000. I generally play at high settings rather than ultra because I like to speed battles up 2 or 4 times speed during slower action periods to move them along quicker.
    Reply