Post updated September 20th, 2018 at 01:10 am
4K gaming monitors have come a long way since their arrival into the gaming market years ago. There are several models that come with a variety of features besides Ultra HD resolution, which includes anti-tearing technology and HDR. This year, ASUS launched the ROG Swift PG27UQ gaming monitor; a monitor that has been (unofficially) described as a “God monitor”.
With a big display, high refresh rate, fast screen response time, and HDR support, there’s a lot to love about this over-the-top gaming monitor. But is it really worth owning? Let’s find out.
What Is It?
Here’s the breakdown: The ROG Swift PG27UQ is a 4K HDR gaming monitor that measures in at 27-inches. The display panel is made using Quantum Dot technology, while the HDR feature itself is powered via NVIDIA’s 2nd generation G-Sync module.
The PG27UQ’s maximum resolution is rated at 3840 x 2160 pixels, which is spread across a display ratio of 16:9. To further sweeten the pot, ASUS has also thrown in a 144Hz refresh rate and a relatively fast 4ms display response time (grey-to-grey scale). On top of that, ASUS also manually calibrates the colour accuracy of each unit at its factory. Just to ensure that each one lives up to the DCI-P3 colour gamut used in the monitor.
The PG27UQ is also height-adjustable, and can also be swiveled, tilted, and rotated. But only to the right side. The base of the PG27UQ takes the form of a stylised, twisting, three-prong stand design. As added bonus, the base of the stand is fitted with an LED that projects ASUS’ ROG symbol on a table’s surface.
Is It Any Good?
As a gaming monitor, the PG27UQ does what it is designed to do really well. Thanks to its 4K resolution, there’s an exceptionally high level of immersion when playing games on it. Basically, everything on the screen just seems to pop out.
Thanks to the 2nd generation NVIDIA G-Sync HDR module, we were able to pair the monitor with an appropriate GeForce graphics to enjoy a display tear-free experience. All without having to activate the V-Sync feature in any of the games we played.
Because the PG27UQ is also capable of achieving a maximum refresh rate of 144Hz, you’re also guaranteed a smoother visual gameplay experience. Provided, of course, that your graphics card is capable of handling the 4K resolution, high refresh rate, and HDR combo all at once.
Gaming notwithstanding, the PG27UQ also has its uses as a productivity monitor. Despite its 16:9 aspect ratio, you can still open up several tabs and multi-task with it, thanks to both the ultra-high 4K resolution and large 27-inch display. Words and sentences are sharp and look crisp, which makes reading any form of text easy on the eyes.
Still on the subject of its display panel, the PG27UQ showed no signs of washing out or bleeding from its edges, no matter which side we viewed the monitor from.
The PG27UQ also comes built with ASUS’ Aura Sync RGB lighting technology, which can be seen from the illuminated ROG symbol at the back of the monitor. Adding on to this, the top of the display’s spine is also equipped with a mini projector that actually projects the ROG symbol on to the ceiling.
The Bad Stuff. Tell Me.
Of all the PG27UQ’s caveats, its biggest drawback (most painful, even) is its asking price. Owning this monitor will require that you be prepared to fork out a whopping RM10999. To put that price into perspective: that’s about the cost of a top-of-the-line custom desktop PC, plus change.
Moving forward, we also encountered an issue with the PG27UQ’s 144Hz refresh rate. When set to it, the monitor would begin to show signs of artificing. Specifically around texts seen either in the description of certain desktop apps, or in pages that were opened up in browsers. Eliminating the issue was simple; reducing the refresh rate down to either anything below 144Hz (but above 60Hz, obviously) eliminated the problem. In our case, we simply dialed it down a notch to 120Hz, which was honestly just as good, since the difference between the two refresh rates are negligible.
Another issue with the PG27UQ is actually an aesthetic one: its thick bezels. Where most modern gaming monitors today are preaching near bezel-less display, the bezels on this gaming monitor are thick and protruding. However, we find this caveat to be forgivable, especially when you consider all of the display enhancing features it comes loaded with.
Should I Buy It?
With a hefty pricetag of RM10999, the ASUS ROG Swift PG27UQ is by far the most expensive and most premium gaming monitor ASUS has ever made, and we’ve ever tested. But believe us when we tell you: the experience of gaming in full 4K HDR resolution, with G-Sync active and the refresh rate set above the standard 60Hz, is absolutely sublime.
It’s also a bit of a bittersweet experience; ASUS had mentioned that given the PG27UQ’s rather exorbitant asking price, only a few of these near godlike gaming monitors would be brought into the country at any given time. That said, if you’ve got a oodles of disposable income and you’re looking for bragging rights among friends. We can’t think of any reason for you not to own this display.
Photography by Ke Ming Hoo and Li Jin Soh.