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Asus ROG Swift PG279QM Gaming Monitor Review

By Edward Chester. Posted

For several years, 144Hz and 165Hz displays with a resolution of 2,560 x 1,440 (1440p) have been commonplace. However, it’s only recently that displays of this resolution have stepped up to 240Hz, and the Asus PG279QM (£799 inc VAT) is one of those select few.

This 27in, IPS panel also includes support for G-Sync Ultimate (complete with dedicated hardware) across its full 1-240Hz range and includes Nvidia’s Reflex Analyzer. This tech lets you connect your mice via the monitor’s USB hub, and then uses a built-in detection tool to work out the latency between clicking a mouse button and the effect being shown on screen.

It’s an interesting addition but requires specific game support and has limited use. Your old wireless mouse may cause significant input lag, rather than your monitor. You can also use the feature to optimise in-game settings, but most such gains would also be flagged by an increase in frame rate.

The most obvious use case is for highlighting the benefits of another Nvidia feature, which is the Reflex option found in a handful of games. When enabled, this optimises the game for reduced latency, and sure enough, we saw our latency in Apex Legends drop from 22ms to 18ms with this feature turned on. However, you don’t need this monitor to enable that feature.

Elsewhere, the PG279QM generally impresses. Its image quality is decent out of the box, with contrast that exactly matched its rated 1,000:1 ratio in our tests, and it has the option of either an sRGB mode for reducing the colour gamut when needed and a high gamut mode that will dole out 100 per cent of the rec.2020 colour space, for truly dazzling colours in HDR.

The physical design is a little fussy, with a metallic grey finish, copper highlights and RGB lighting on the rear

However, colour balance was a little off, hitting a colour temperature over 7,000K even in its sRGB mode, so a little tweaking will be required if you’re using this display for colour-critical work. HDR is also a little underwhelming, as the mere 32 edge-lit backlight zones can’t produce a measurable boost in contrast in most content.

Meanwhile, the physical design is a little fussy, with a metallic grey finish, copper highlights and RGB lighting on the rear. The connections around the back are also awkward to reach, thanks to a lip on the bottom edge of the screen sitting directly in line with the ports and pushing against the cables.

Gaming performance is excellent though. The 240Hz refresh rate combines with an impressive average initial response time of 3.7ms at maximum overdrive and 4.4ms at medium overdrive, making for a very snappy, responsive feel. Overshoot can creep up at high overdrive settings, but is manageable at medium overdrive, so we’d stick with that setting. It’s a shame Asus hasn’t included a backlight strobing blur reduction mode though.

The step up to a 1440p resolution over 1080p – as is more common for 240Hz displays – is significant for some games but less so for others. In Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, Valorant and even Apex Legends, the extra resolution isn’t so critical, but in Call of Duty: Warzone, the extra detail is essential for picking out enemies among the distant trees.

Conclusion

The Asus ROG Swift PG279QM’s combination of a 2,560 x 1,440 resolution and a 240Hz refresh rate works to great effect, but it comes at a very high price. Several direct competitors are similarly pricey, but there are many 165Hz options for under half this display’s price that will serve many gamers fine.

Verdict
Cutting-edge gaming performance and fantastic image quality, but boy, does it come at a price.

Price
£799 inc VAT

Scores
IMAGE QUALITY 26/30 | GAMING 26/30 | FEATURES 14/20 | VALUE 8/20 | OVERALL 74%

THE REFLEX
+Solid image quality
+Superb gaming performance
+Very high colour gamut

THE REFLUX
-Reflex Analyzer of limited use
-No contrast boost for HDR
-Very expensive

SPEC
Screen size 27in
Resolution 2,560 x 1,440
Panel technology IPS
Maximum refresh rate 240Hz
Response time 1ms
Max brightness 350cd/m² SDR, 400cd/m² HDR
Backlight zones 1
Stated contrast ratio 1,000:1
Adaptive sync FreeSync and G-Sync Ultimate
Display inputs 1 x DisplayPort 1.4, 3 x HDMI 2
Audio 2 x 2W speakers, headphone out
Stand adjustment Height, pivot, rotation, tilt
Extras 100 x 100mm VESA mount, 2-port USB 3 hub, rear RGB lighting
HDR standard VESA DisplayHDR 400

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