The best gaming monitors strike a perfect balance between image quality and speed. Contrast and color accuracy are key components and now that we have HDR and extended color adorning more games and movies, we need monitors that can do justice to those technologies.
But speed is still paramount to the gaming experience. Adaptive sync is a must as is a high refresh rate. And unless you have a significant investment in your video board, it’s important to select a monitor that pairs well with your system. High pixel density is certainly a good thing but every step up in resolution puts a greater demand on connected hardware.
The Asus ROG Strix XG279Q delivers that balance. With 170Hz through overclock and both types of adaptive sync, it delivers smooth and responsive gameplay. And by making blur-reduction available with both FreeSync and G-Sync, Asus is offering something unique. In practice, there is occasional flickering but when adaptive sync and ELMB are working together, motion resolution is almost eerily sharp.
Asus addresses image quality well with one of the best IPS panels we’ve seen to date. It offers solid native contrast, a bright backlight capable of over 500 nits in HDR mode and a large color gamut with over 92% coverage of DCI-P3. HDR content looks fantastic thanks to a well-implemented dynamic contrast feature. Highlights pop and blacks are deep with color saturation that stands out from most other gaming monitors.
Flaws are few and insignificant. We saw a few murky shadows in HDR mode, and we preferred to use overdrive for blur-reduction rather than the ELMB backlight strobe. And that feature doesn’t work with HDR. Calibration was also required to achieve the best possible image quality. But none of these things detracted from the fact that the XG279Q is a superb gaming monitor. Playing at 170fps with instant control response makes gaming an addictive experience.
At around $600 street price, the XG279Q isn’t cheap, but it will save you some cash over a similar ROG Swift display. And it provides performance and image quality that can compete with some of the best HDR monitors we’ve tested. We think you should definitely check it out.
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