Check out the latest in WQHD monitors with this ASUS MG279q 27 inch FreeSync gaming monitor. It’s part of their growing line of gaming gear, but could this also become a great part of your home entertainment gear?
On my desktop I run 2 monitors – one in portrait mode for reading and the other with productivity software on it. However, just like when the tech industry introduced 16:9 monitors over 4:3, I could see a lot of 2-screen users switch back to a single screen simply because of the content you can put on this monitor.
First of all, let’s take a look at the specs of the ASUS MG279q. This is a 27 inch WQHD monitor with a planned maximum resolution of 2560×1440 – otherwise known at 1440p in 90 Hz. Put four of these bad boys together using the Display Port for maximum screen usage.
I just did an AMD driver update and it added a 3200×1800 option in 60 Hz – adding more desktop space for production tools. To give you a good example of desktop space use, I have Chrome open on the left side of the screen while I’m putting together this video script on the right side. When I do a live stream, I can have the three programs I need open and not have to use the 2nd monitor.
Let’s talk connections. The monitor in the back contains 2 HDMI ports, large and small display port connectors, USB 3.0 input, 2 USB 3.0 outputs and external audio output for headphones or speakers. So not only can I connect a computer and run the HDMI audio, I can also connect a cable box, Roku, AppleTV, Chromecast or Amazon FireTV to watch some of my favorite shows.
And I have a few computers this monitor can share. My main machine is an AMD FX 8350 runnng the HIS IceQ X2 R9 390 video GPU with a 1020 MHz core clock and 8 GB of internal memory. However, plugging the monitor into my HP Folio 1040 G1 with Intel Graphics HD 4400 and my 2011 Macbook Pro with AMD Radeon HD 6490 graphics card also allows me at least 1440p in 60 Hz.
Then there is AMD’s FreeSync technology. It’s one of two standards out there (FreeSync and G-Sync). AMD FreeSync is a technology that resolves many communication issues between computer and monitor by boosting the refresh rate between 35 and 90Hz. If you are gaming, this is important – it helps in reducing choppy gameplay and broken frames. Especially as games get more complex in their renders.
Of course, the HIS Ice Q X2 R9 390 is a FreeSync enabled card. Like I mentioned with the latest update also comes with some new features including ability to screen capture through Plays.tv or broadcast via TWITCH.
Pros and Cons of the ASUS MG279q 4K Monitor with FreeSync
So let’s start with the button system of this monitor. This consists of 5 buttons and a eraser-nub joystick placed in the back right corner. It took a little bit to get used to, but I was flipping between HDMI and Display Port pretty quick, even set up the Freesync options and created schemes for different types of monitor settings. The monitor will detect if a display is connected, but when I had the Amazon FireTV hooked up and I turned the main computer off, it would get stuck on the FireTV even when the device was in sleep mode.
If I have this monitor in a 4-6 monitor block up in the air, that could become problematic because I might not be able to get behind the device to change settings.
Further, this could have easily become a monitor for my living room – where my XBox lives – IF it had a remote control to it.
What it does do is play games with better refresh rates. The monitor is just a beautiful thing to watch. I ran a before and after test using 3D Mark from our friends at Futuremark. The end result is some pretty impressive numbers you can see right here.
The monitor is around 16 lbs with the stand. On my Ergotron sit-stand desk, I use the 2 monitor Ergotron arm. This allows me to move the monitor around with one hand. And as the monitor has a 3/4″ border around it, you can’t make a 4 monitor seamless video wall.
As for the desktop space, I have been running Wirecast on this monitor and like I said before – I can put all the components on one screen, including webpages I refer to. This reduces mouse cursor issues when it jumps from screen to screen.
Without FreeSync running, the video still looks nice, but can only get up to 60Hz on the Display Port. I ran color calibration on this monitor and found it was pretty spot on. Video editing at 90 Hz refresh rates helps, especially when I am editing 120fps video and faster. I have yet to see this run at 144Hz.
Even though set top boxes don’t do beyond 1080p 60fps, I can pull up web pages in YouTube and Netflix and watch 4K resolutions on this 1440p monitor.
The price of the ASUS MG279q is around $599 and is available now.