MSI has stepped up to the plate with the Optix MAG24C. For less than $250, you get 144Hz and FreeSync, which should be enough for most users to stop contemplating and pull out their wallets. But wait, there’s more. A high-quality, high-contrast VA panel is the icing on the cake, with a cherry on top. We were extremely impressed with the image quality delivered. 3000:1 contrast is not just a small improvement over IPS or TN. It’s a major upgrade.
The only missing items are minor. There are no speakers or USB ports. Design is gamer-oriented, but there are no fancy lighting effects or molded textures in the chassis. You get a nice pair of red LED strips around back that glow softly, but that’s about it for the MAG24C’s aesthetics. We don’t mean to imply that it’s plain, but some users may want hardware that makes a bolder visual statement.
You also won’t get a ton of extra gaming features. The overdrive works but disables the brightness control, so we consider it unavailable. But that’s not a problem with the MAG24C’s frame rates. When operating over 100Hz, blur simply wasn’t an issue. Ultimately, you may not be left wanting in this regard.
The only thing we wish MSI would add is an sRGB mode. Though it handles color smartly for an extended-gamut monitor. The best fidelity in nearly all content comes from accurate sRGB color reproduction. The MAG24C is a DCI panel that hits most, but not all, sRGB gamut target. This may be a problem for those who demand ultimate accuracy. But the silver lining is that if MSI were to add HDR in the future, the panel is already capable enough in both the color and contrast departments.
The final message here is check out the MAG24C’s amazing contrast. While some may wish for higher resolution, this 24-inch FHD screen offers plenty of detail while delivering high frame rates with cheap video cards and more depth than any IPS or TN screen can muster. That is the crowning feature here and the reason why we’re so impressed with what MSI is offering for less than $250. The Optix MAG24C is highly recommended.
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