Asus PB328Q 32-inch AMVA QHD Monitor Review

OSD Setup And Calibration

If you've used a late-model Asus monitor, the PB328Q's OSD will look quite familiar. Functions are broken down into nine sub-menus. The joystick makes navigation very quick and easy and setup is a breeze.

OSD Tour

Asus calls its image modes "Splendid" and there are seven of them. All are adjustable except for the sRGB mode, which locks out everything including brightness. Color is pretty accurate but output is fixed at 230cd/m2. The two User modes are fully adjustable and use the sRGB preset as a starting point.

The Blue Light Filter is a staple feature of many Asus monitors and similar options are available on other brands. It reduces blue to warm the white point in an effort to mitigate eye fatigue. It works as advertised but we think a proper calibration is the better way to go.

The Color menu has a large array of image adjustments including general saturation and hue sliders, gamma presets, two-point white balance and a color management system.

There are four color temp presets organized by degrees Kelvin. 9300K is the coolest (most blue) followed by 6500, 5500 and 5000, which get progressively warmer (redder).

Four gamma presets ranging from 1.8 to 2.4 are available. Our measurements closely matched the listed values and tracking is very precise throughout the brightness range.

Here are the color management and two-point white balance controls. Hue and saturation can be adjusted for each primary and secondary color. In practice, the saturation control also changes luminance so use it sparingly. We used the hue sliders to tweak the magenta and yellow secondaries though they were pretty close to target in the first place.

Gain and Offset options mean you can dial in the grayscale tracking for both lighter and darker steps. We use 30 and 80 percent patterns to make our changes. The result is a very precise calibration with almost perfect values at every step. You'll see just how good the PB328Q is on pages five and six.

Remaining image options are in, appropriately, the Image menu. The Sharpness control is set to 40 by default and should be left there. Higher values produce visible edge enhancement and unsightly outlines around dark objects.

Trace Free is Asus' term for overdrive. We set it to 100 for our tests and left it there during gameplay. There was little motion blur and no ghosting to speak of.

Aspect Control allows you to accommodate lower-res signals without stretching the image. Options are 4:3, Full, 1:1 and OverScan; 1:1 means anything less than 2560x1440 will be windowed.

VividPixel can subtly improve detail without introducing edge enhancement. Level 25 worked for us but anything higher will create minor artifacts that reduce effective resolution.

ASCR is the dynamic contrast function. The PB328Q already has tremendous contrast without this feature so we recommend leaving it off to preserve maximum detail.

The last three options pertain to analog signals. You can adjust the image's position and focus for the VGA input.

Volume and mute controls affect both the speakers and the headphone output. When you plug in, the speakers are disabled. The audio source can be HDMI, DisplayPort or analog.

PIP and PBP is a natural use for such a large screen. The PB328Q can display two sources simultaneously. There aren't many monitors that will show digital and analog signals together. You can view them in either a window or side-by-side format.

Here is the input selector; it's also mapped to one of the control keys so you don't have to use the OSD to change sources.

System Setup has options for Eco mode (limits brightness to reduce power consumption) OSD (timeout, transparency and rotation), language (21 choices), DisplayPort version and Key Lock, which disables the function keys.

Information tells you the input resolution and refresh rate along with the active source and PIP status. At the top right of every menu you can see the same thing along with the currently-selected picture mode.

Two of the bezel control keys can be programmed to any one of eight functions. This saves you a trip into the OSD when you want to change brightness or inputs for example.

Calibration

Selecting either the Standard, sRGB or User mode nearly eliminates the need for further adjustment. All three are very accurate but the sRGB preset locks out all settings including brightness. You'll have to be happy with 230cd/m2 in that mode. We calibrated User 1 with the two-point white balance and CMS sliders. After small tweaks, we recorded error levels worthy of a professional monitor. Even though the PB328Q is not part of Asus' ProArt line, it performs at an extremely high level. Please try our settings below to optimize your display.

Asus PB328Q Calibration Settings
Mode
User
Brightness 200cd/m2
39
Brightness 120cd/m217
Brightness 100cd/m212
Brightness 80cd/m26
Contrast
78
6-Axis Magenta
Hue 53, Saturation 54
Gains
Red 49, Green 52, Blue 52
Offsets
All 50
Gamma
2.2
TraceFree
100
VividPixel
25
Sharpness
40
Blue Light Filter
0

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14 comments
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  • King Kii
    price?
  • King Kii
    Quote:
    price?
    for some reason it wasnt loading the price under your spec sheet, but i just checked the amazon link. $ 599.
  • sburgess
    I would love if we could get some insider information about Asus' quality control issues. We can't all get press samples.
  • Poozle
    I would get it but... ASUS has so many quality control issues. Never buying their products until they fix that.
  • Xorak
    Good thing it doesn't have Freesync, or I'd be seriously tempted to pick this up and move my MG279Q to the secondary PC...
  • jonbonwolf
    $469 at Newegg!
  • DookieDraws
    ^^ SHHHHHHHH! I'm still trying to decide if I should get it or not. :)
  • ohim
    Why VGA port on such a product ? At this point a monitor like this should have DP 1.3 and HDMI 2.0 only.. since these are the future from what it seems.

    As a gamer and video editor i really want a monitor that can combine both worlds but for now it seems you have to choose, get high refresh rates but TN panels or good IPS / VA with low refresh rates.
  • ericgl
    I'm still waiting for a UHD display with 120Hz/144Hz refresh rate, 10bit color (1.07b colors), 100% AdobeRGB coverage, 85%+ rec2020 coverage. Am I too unrealistic?
  • JonDol
    Yeah, I'm waiting for that too. With G-Sync or FreeSync and the latest HDMI (2.0 ?) and DP (1.3 ?).

    1339156 said:
    I'm still waiting for a UHD display with 120Hz/144Hz refresh rate, 10bit color (1.07b colors), 100% AdobeRGB coverage, 85%+ rec2020 coverage. Am I too unrealistic?
  • Uri___Pisarev
    I went from a 22 inch monitor to a 32 inch TV..........amazing improvement is overall enjoyment of PC, Gaming and all that. Later went from a TV to a 34 inch, 1440P monitor.............even better. Size matters, it improves the overall experience tremendously.
  • fmyhr
    Out of *6* PB328Qs I tried, ALL had multiple dead pixels. I'm not alone -- see Amazon reviews. Strongly recommend choosing the BenQ BL3200PT over this Asus. (It uses the same VA panel.)
  • NeatOman
    I got a 4K (3840x2160) "perfect pixel" AVMA 10=bit 4:4:4 chroma 39.5" from korea for $580 last July. I should note, the back-light on the edges are slightly off and the new versions of that monitor don't have that issue.
  • Stoo
    I am making a plea : Can you PLEASE start reviewing the anti-glare coating on monitors. Many monitors still have an anti-glare coating that gives an annoying shimmering effect and gives the impression that you are looking through something when looking at objects on the monitor. On monitors that don't do that, objects on the display look like they can be touched directly.

    You need to do this. Please. The stores around me don't have many monitors on display so I can't go look for myself what they look like prior to purchasing on the Internet. So I'm pretty much relying on online reviews to do this but no one ever mentions anything and anti-glare coatings.