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Asus MG279Q 27-Inch FreeSync Monitor Review

Today we're reviewing Asus' MG279Q FreeSync gaming monitor, looking at how well it compares to Acer's XB270HU IPS G-Sync monitor?

Brightness And Contrast

To read about our monitor tests in-depth, please check out Display Testing Explained: How We Test Monitors and TVs.Brightness and Contrast testing is covered on page two.

Uncalibrated – Maximum Backlight Level

Today's comparison group covers recently reviewed G-Sync and FreeSync monitors. The only other 144Hz IPS monitor on the list is Acer's XB270HU. Also present are BenQ's XL2730Z and XL2420G plus Acer's XG270HU and XB280HK, the only 60Hz Ultra HD monitor we know of with G-Sync.

The XB270HU uses the same AU Optronics panel as our test subject so we should see close numbers between the two. Right off the bat, the Asus is a tiny bit less bright, although 341.4015cd/m2 is more than enough output for any need we can imagine. There's no ULMB to bring the light level down so this is nowhere near a problem.

The MG279Q edges out the field in black level. We're big fans of AU Optronics' new IPS panel and hope it starts a trend towards similar products from other companies.

Asus MG279Q wins the contrast test over Acer's XB270HU by just a little bit. If this metric is important to you, the only real decision is which flavor of frame-rate-matching you prefer, G-Sync or FreeSync.

Uncalibrated – Minimum Backlight Level

The MG279Q has a useable minimum brightness of 43.8515cd/m2. Why Acer chose to go down so low is a mystery to us. Of all the panels here, the Asus MG279Q and the BenQ XL2730Z come closest to our preferred dark-room setting of 50cd/m2.

Since the XB270HU's backlight goes so low, it will win every black level contest. In reality though, the MG279Q is the winner here since it is actually usable at its minimum brightness setting.

Asus continues its winning streak in the minimum contrast test. In fact, it's one of the best IPS screens we've measured to date. Only the AMVA panels from BenQ have significantly greater dynamic range.

After Calibration to 200cd/m2

Calibration puts the MG279Q back on top in the black level test. It's turning out to be a superb panel and even though it's the same part as the XB270HU, it fares just a little better here.

Normally calibration reduces contrast when the RGB sliders start at 100 percent. With a measured drop of less than six percent, there is essentially no penalty for dialing in accurate color. Of course the XB270HU isn't far behind and in the end, we'd be equally happy to have either screen in our gaming rig. Their images are for all intents and purposes, identical in quality.

ANSI Contrast Ratio

ANSI contrast is a little more sample-dependent so the results here are skewed a bit. We consider anything over 900:1 to be acceptable. The MG279Q achieves that with ease.

  • Kridian
    I'll buy one when they get to the $300 mark. Come on OLED, let's push some prices down!
    Reply
  • moogleslam
    Any 21:9 3440x1440p G-Sync/FreeSync monitor reviews on the horizon? Thanks
    Reply
  • ceberle
    Any 21:9 3440x1440p G-Sync/FreeSync monitor reviews on the horizon? Thanks

    I've just finished testing the Acer XR341CK. Look for the review soon!

    -Christian-
    Reply
  • moogleslam
    16520347 said:
    Any 21:9 3440x1440p G-Sync/FreeSync monitor reviews on the horizon? Thanks

    I've just finished testing the Acer XR341CK. Look for the review soon!

    -Christian-

    Awesome Christian - thank you! This week? :) Will you be reviewing the G-Sync version when it comes out also? It's supposedly a little different in that it will be 100Hz whereas the FreeSync is 75Hz. Thanks

    Reply
  • nate1492
    You tested a $600 144hz ips monitor with a $150 graphics card and you didn't push the framerates?

    I don't see the validity of this review, why would you use such a middle range graphics card for a high end monitor? I don't see many people shelling out $600 for monitor and $150 for a gfx card!

    It almost sounds like you chose the amd 285 because you realized it couldn't push the monitor to the upper 100s FPS.
    Reply
  • nate1492
    You tested a $600 144hz ips monitor with a $150 graphics card and you didn't push the framerates?

    I don't see the validity of this review, why would you use such a middle range graphics card for a high end monitor? I don't see many people shelling out $600 for monitor and $150 for a gfx card!

    It almost sounds like you chose the amd 285 because you realized it couldn't push the monitor to the upper 100s FPS.
    Reply
  • TechyInAZ
    Looks good, at least free sync users now get an IPS monitor for themselves.
    Reply
  • picture_perfect
    why would you use such a middle range graphics card for a high end monitor?.

    The results will probably be more in line with people's experience. Great review. I prefer fps over resolution so will pass on this monitor.
    Reply
  • hannibal
    The problem in image quality is when the frame rate drops too low, so not too powerfull GPU is good for testing that. If you have GPU that can run 144 FPS all the time, it does not need G-sync of Freesync...
    And I personally would put any day more money to monitor than graphic card. Good monitor is so much better deal in the long run!
    Reply
  • skit75
    16520396 said:
    You tested a $600 144hz ips monitor with a $150 graphics card and you didn't push the framerates?

    I don't see the validity of this review, why would you use such a middle range graphics card for a high end monitor? I don't see many people shelling out $600 for monitor and $150 for a gfx card!

    It almost sounds like you chose the amd 285 because you realized it couldn't push the monitor to the upper 100s FPS.

    What would be the point of that? It is a QHD IPS panel with a known sync range. If you have a monster GPU, just get a 144Hz monitor and be done. You likely don't need Free-Sync or G-Sync if all your games play at 100FPS +.
    Reply