Asus has joined the push for cheaper 4K monitors and brought G-Sync to the high-end with the unveiling of a pair of new gaming monitors, the Asus PG278Q and Asus PB287Q.
The Asus PG278Q will be the second monitor to feature Nvidia G-Sync.
The first of these new monitors, the PG278Q, is a 27in model with a WQHD (2,560 x 1,440) resolution, a super-thin 6mm bezel and that includes Nvidia G-Sync.
Asus was the first company to include Nvidia's new dynamic refresh rate technology in a monitor with the Asus VG248QE with G-Sync
but the relatively modest resolution of that monitor meant that it didn't quite fit the bill as a premium monitor upgrade to best show off G-Sync. The PG278Q aims to fix that by upping the resolution and panel quality.
However, like the VG248QE, the PG278Q still uses a high refresh rate TN panel, which is likely to mean image quality isn't as good as premium monitors that use IPS or other more advanced LCD technologies. The advantage of this choice is the display will run at up to 120+Hz, providing lightning fast response times and making it ideal for competitive gaming.
Asus says of the decision to use a TN panel, "Not all TN’s are made the same: the premium panel used in the PG278Q is of very high quality. IPS panels (and their derivatives like PVA/MVA etc) are not suitable for a multitude of reasons: 1) the response rate is simply not fast enough to react to the active change in refresh rate and 2) They cannot reliably achieve >60Hz without significantly affecting the quality of the image. IGZO technology (and LTPS – low temperature polysilicon – likewise) – yields 100′s of times faster electron mobility versus standard amorphous silicon panels – and thus can provide a response rate comparable to TN (up to 60Hz currently), but, however desirable this technology is, it is still currently cost prohibitively for many PC gaming enthusiasts in 2014, which is why ROG has used a better price:performance, high quality TN panel."
This is all well and good but G-Sync is actually primarily designed to improve the experience when gaming at around 40-60fps, as we found in our G-Sync review
ASUS ROG Swift PG278Q specifications
- Display: 27-inch WQHD 2560 × 1440 (16:9)
- Narrow 6mm bezel designed for multi-monitor setups
- Pixel Pitch: 0.233mm
- Brightness: 350cd/m²
- Display Colours: 16.7M
- Refresh Rate: Over 120 Hz
- Response Time: 1ms (GTG)
- Connectivity: 1 x DisplayPort 1.2, USB 3.0 ports (upstream x 1, downstream × 3), 3.5mm headphone jack
- Stand Adjustments: tilt (+20° ~ -5°), swivel (+60° ~ -60°), pivot (90° clockwise), height adjustment (0 ~120mm)
- VESA-wall mountable (100 × 100mm)
- ASUS Features: GamePlus, 5-way joystick OSD navigation.
Another potential issue with this monitor is that it only has one input: a single DisplayPort 1.2 socket. Although this will be fine for most gamers, it does seem a strangely limiting choice on a premium display.
The Asus PG278Q will be available in the next few months but no price has yet been mentioned.
Joining the PG278Q in Asus' premium monitor range will be a new UHD/4k monitor that, like the Lenovo ThinkVision Pro 2840m
that was announced yesterday, aims to bring 4k resolutions to a more affordable price point.
Sporting a 3,840 x 2,160 resolution it will use a TN panel - like the Lenovo - to keep costs down but will include plenty of video inputs, with HDMI, HDMI/MHL and DisplayPOrt 1.2 all onboard. It will also have a pair of stereo speakers.
The Asus PB287Q will be available in the second quarter of 2014, and is priced at $799.