Asus XG27AQMR Review: High Performance Meets Affordability

Asus ROG Strix XG27AQMR is an updated device with a 300 Hz refresh rate without overclocking, a revised design, and an approach to color reproduction capabilities. The 360Hz 1440p Asus monitor has completely replaced its predecessor, and therefore ASUS no longer has any other ultra-fast options with a resolution of 2560 x 1440 pixels. So in this Asus XG27AQMR review, we will look at where it has improved, and where the manufacturer has made some simplifications.

Asus XG27AQMR review

The ROG Strix XG27AQMR, which launched in March 2023, is currently available at a discounted price. On average, it retails for between $500 and $599 in the United States.

Asus XG27AQMR Review

Design and ergonomics

Complex shapes intertwined with each other, with plastic of different textures and colors, instantly create the image of an expensive and niche product, aimed primarily at the gaming audience. Unlike the higher-priced models in the ROG Strix series, our Asus XG27AQMR review unit does not feature the Aura RGB external lighting system, did not install a back cover in the area of ​​​​connection interfaces, and removed all colored elements. It became as strict and practical as possible.

Asus XG27AQMR review

One of the first and most obvious changes to the new product compared to many of its predecessors is the updated stand and central column, which we could previously see on other gaming monitors from the brand.

The first design now rests entirely flat on the table, retaining its depth but lacking the distinctive color accents of the ROG series. The stand has been slimmed down, and the cable management cutout has been updated to an oval shape with sharp bevels.

The 1440p 27″ IPS monitor has a quick-release connection. To disconnect, you need to press the button located near the interface connectors.

When you disconnect the stand on the monitor body, you will find a classic VESA 100 x 100 mm mount. In the upper part of the central pillar, the XG27AQMR has a standard tripod mount for installing various web cameras or other accessories.

The ergonomics of the stand provide height adjustment within 110 mm, tilt in the range from -5 to +20 degrees, and rotation of the body 25 degrees to the right/left.

Asus XG27AQMR review

The 300 Hz display can flip to portrait mode (Pivot) in one direction, but this did not cause additional play in the main mechanism – everything is clear. The position of the case on the stand can be changed smoothly, but it is necessary to apply a little more effort at the beginning of the adjustment, especially when turning the case.

All holding elements, the insides of the fastening mechanisms, and the base of the stand are made of metal. The latter uses four rubber feet of different shapes for better grip on the work surface.

The build quality of the 360Hz 1440p Asus monitor is reliably exceptional, leaving no room for dissatisfaction. Everything here is of the highest standard: the fitting of elements to each other, their processing, and the quality of the painting.

The monitor’s robust build quality prevents backlash, and its slim casing remains rigid, free from creaking or squeaking when moved or repositioned. The design includes ample ventilation holes in various shapes and sizes that blend seamlessly with the overall aesthetic. Additionally, the cooling system is passive, ensuring silent operation without any fan noise.

Asus XG27AQMR review

At the rear, all the primary connection ports are downward-facing to facilitate easy cable management, especially since the monitor can be rotated into portrait mode for easier access.

The device lacks built-in speakers and an ambient light sensor, features that are available in some other ROG series models.

The package contents of the Asus XG27AQMR are as follows:

Asus XG27AQMR review
  • Power cable
  • External power supply
  • DisplayPort cable
  • HDMI cable
  • USB Type-B cable for connecting to a PC and operating the built-in hub;
  • Black cable cover
  • Quick installation and configuration guide
  • ASUS VIP Member Prospectus
  • ROG Strix sticker set
  • ENERGY standards compliance stickers
  • Factory calibration report in sRGB mode

Menu and controls

The Asus XG27AQMR uses a control scheme familiar to PB|PG|MG|VG|XG series, consisting of a five-way joystick and additional physical keys.

The small white power LED does not interfere with operation at all. If necessary, you can fully deactivate it using the relevant option in the monitor’s menu.

When you press the control joystick, the main menu immediately appears on the screen. Quick access via two physical keys can be obtained (at default settings) to select GameVisual modes and GamePlus functions. To display a block with hints, just press the second key from the top.

The monitor settings are divided into multiple sections, each designed to optimize different aspects of the user experience.

Asus XG27AQMR review

Gaming:

In the Gaming section, users can:

  • Overclock the matrix through Variable OD.
  • Enable Adaptive-Sync for adaptive synchronization.
  • Activate the ELMB/ELMB-Sync modes for “black frame” insertion.
  • Customize GamePlus features and select GameVisual modes.
  • Adjust shadow enhancement via Shadow Boost.

Image:

The Image section allows you to:

  • Adjust brightness and contrast levels.
  • Activate dynamic contrast with ASCR.
  • Select the built-in scaler’s operating mode.
  • Adjust the Blue Light Filter to reduce eye strain.
  • Access the VividPixel setting for contour sharpening, available in specific modes.
  • Enable Dynamic Dimming and choose from several HDR presentation modes.
  • When HDR is enabled, most settings are locked, but users can choose between two HDR modes:
  • ASUS Cinema HDR
  • ASUS Gaming HDR

Color:

In the Color section:

  • Select from color temperature modes.
  • Manually adjust RGB levels.
  • Choose from five gamma settings and saturation adjustments (mode-dependent).
  • Select Display Color Space without switching through Game Visual modes.

Input and MyFavorite:

  • In the Input Select section, automatically or manually choose the signal source.
  • In the MyFavorite section, assign shortcut keys for two functions and save settings to one of two memory blocks, aiding users with specific configurations for tasks or games.

System Setup:

The System Setup menu offers general adjustments unrelated to image quality:

  • Customize the OSD menu’s appearance and position.
  • Choose the menu language.
  • Lock control keys and toggle the power indicator.
  • Set energy-saving levels.
  • Access basic monitor information, adjust DP version and DSC signal compression, control audio output volume via the 3.5mm jack, and reset all settings to factory defaults.

This structure allows users to easily navigate through settings and make precise adjustments to enhance both gaming performance and general use.

Asus XG27AQMR review test

Color gamut

The IPS 27-inch 1440p monitor uses a modern panel with an advanced backlight system but with a limited color gamut of 120% sRGB and a stated 97% DCI-P3, which is strange. In our Asus XG27AQMR review, we’ll explore the performance of this monitor right out of the box, its capabilities when set to DCI-P3 and sRGB emulation modes, and its effectiveness at reducing blue light exposure at the highest setting.

The screenshots reveal that the Fast IPS panel surpasses the sRGB standard, particularly in the reproduction of turquoise, green, and notably vibrant red halftones. At the same time, in comparison with DCI-P3, the Asus ROG Strix 1440p monitor clearly does not have enough capabilities to reproduce pure green and yellow halftones.

The transition to emulation modes leads to the fact that in DCI-P3 the monitor loses even more of its capabilities (the color gamut narrows), but in sRGB the emulation is almost perfect. Note that in all three cases of setting the color space through the Display Color Space option, it remains possible to adjust brightness, contrast, color temperature, and gamma – this is very important for fine-tuning the monitor and ease of interaction with it.

In Blue Light Filter – Level 4 mode, the color gamut narrows significantly, especially in the yellow and green areas. Finally, for manual tuning and further calibration, we used the factory Racing mode with the full-color gamut selected (Wide Gamut). After the procedures, the CO remained almost at the same level as with the default settings.

Let’s examine the color accuracy and coverage percentages achieved under various settings:

Standard Settings (Racing + Wide Gamut Mode):

  • sRGB: 99.9 | 128.1%
  • AdobeRGB: 82.3 | 88.2%
  • DCI-P3: 87.9 | 90.7%

Racing + DCI-P3 Mode:

  • sRGB: 99.7 | 121.3%
  • AdobeRGB: 78.4 | 83.6%
  • DCI-P3: 85.7 | 85.9%

Racing + sRGB Mode:

  • sRGB: 98.9 | 101.1%
  • AdobeRGB: 69.3 | 69.7%
  • DCI-P3: 71.6 | 71.6%

Blue Light Filter Mode – Level 4:

  • sRGB: 88.6 | 113.8%
  • AdobeRGB: 72.5 | 78.4%
  • DCI-P3: 75.1 | 80.6%

After Setup and Calibration (Racing + Wide Gamut):

  • sRGB: 99.8 | 126.1%
  • AdobeRGB: 81.3 | 86.9%
  • DCI-P3: 87.2 | 89.3%

These figures represent the monitor’s performance in terms of color space coverage before and after calibration across different modes.

All values ​​were obtained by profiling in the Argyll CMS environment, with the cutting off of colors and shades that go beyond the boundaries of the reference values. In reviewing the Asus XG27AQMR, it’s observed that the monitor achieves 85-87% of the advertised 97% DCI-P3 color gamut. However, it exceeds sRGB performance expectations, extending color data up to 126-128%. This indicates a richer color representation in sRGB than initially claimed by ASUS.

Speaking about shades that exceed the studied standards, it can be noted that it is possible to deal with them using methods already known to you: use built-in emulation modes or use ICC/ICM profiles and software with normal support for a color management system (CMS). Among these: are Adobe products, XnView, Faststone Viewer, Windows photo viewers (7, 8, 10, 11), Opera, Firefox, Google Chrome, etc.

Brightness, contrast, and basic color rendering

The Asus XG27AQMR comes pre-installed with seven basic modes and one for customization with a wide range of available options. However, for our purposes, the factory Racing mode and the ability to set the working color space through the Display Color Space function in the corresponding section of the display menu were sufficient.

Upon unboxing, the Asus ROG Strix XG27AQMR monitor is set to Racing mode with these default settings:

  • Brightness: 65
  • Contrast: 80
  • Color Temperature: 6500K
  • Gamma: 2.2
  • Overdrive (Variable OD): Level 3
  • Blue Light Filter: Disabled
  • Display Color Space: Wide Gamut
  • Shadow Boost: Disabled

For optimal color accuracy and a standard brightness level of 100 nits, adjusted settings are as follows:

  • Brightness: 16
  • Contrast: 80
  • Color Temperature: User Mode (R:96, G:98, B:99)
  • Gamma: 2.2
  • Overdrive (Variable OD): Level 4
  • Blue Light Filter: Disabled
  • Display Color Space: Wide Gamut
  • Shadow Boost: Disabled

These adjustments ensure a color temperature that matches the ideal white point of 6500K while maintaining the original gamma and contrast levels.

The main changes occurred due to a decrease in the brightness of the backlight and minor adjustments to the RGB Gain values. The monitor does not need to adjust contrast and saturation levels, as well as gamma – it will only make things worse. You shouldn’t activate Blue Light Filter modes unless absolutely necessary, but you can safely set Variable OD to Level 4 – the monitor will become a little faster.

Let’s examine the data summarized in the following table:

With standard settings, the initial brightness is very high for long-term operation – feel free to reduce it to 20-30%. Switching color spaces does not lead to noticeable changes in brightness and contrast. At maximum exposure (Level 4) in Blue Light Filter mode, brightness is locked at ~133 nits and unadjustable. But at three weaker levels of influence, there is no such problem.

The contrast ratio in all examined cases is close to the stated 1000:1, which is an average level for a modern IPS gaming panel.

The white point in two modes, full coverage and sRGB emulation, is configured with high accuracy at about 6500K. This setting displays a slight spurious tint.

When switching to DCI-P3, the picture acquires a pinkish tint, and in BLF-4, in turn, everything is configured as necessary – the white point is less than 5000K, and the blue component practically disappears (confirmation in the screenshot above), but there is another spurious tint, which is what we’ll talk about it in the next section.

In all three modes, the image contrast is close to ideal – gamma with an index of 2.2, while the visibility of deep shadows is average. There are questions about the overall color accuracy – the average and maximum deviations exceed the permissible level and are in the yellow and red zones. This is primarily because the monitor exceeds the requirements of the sRGB standard and does not reach DCI-P3. The best default results occur when switching to sRGB emulation, which is immediately usable after lowering the brightness.

Further improvements to maximum color gamut can be achieved by editing brightness and RGB values ​​in Racing mode with full-color gamut (Wide Gamut). Moreover, in the case of the Asus XG27AQMR, this does not even require a full calibration with edits to the LUT of the graphics card. Regular profiling is sufficient.

The monitor delivers impressive performance and is well-suited for professional tasks within the sRGB color space. However, it is important to manage expectations; this model does not incorporate the “quantum dot” backlight system featured in its predecessor, the XG27AQM (REVIEW).

Gamma curves and gray balance

I used the HCFR Colorimeter program and a “calibrated” X-Rite Display Pro colorimeter to study gamma curves. These curves were examined in all the “modes” mentioned above, both in their initial presets and in specially “developed” settings. In addition, based on the measurements taken, you can evaluate the divergence of the gray wedge (black-and-white gradient points) on the CIE diagram and conclude the predominance of one or another parasitic shade, or its absence.

With default settings, demonstrates an ideal gamma setting, and correct contrast, but there is a slight RGB imbalance, and the gray wedge points are concentrated near the DeltaE<10 area. The visibility of deep shadows and highlights is at an adequate level.

The transition to the DCI-P3 color space, which the XG27AQMR simply cannot fully reproduce, preserves the gamma settings, but the gray wedge points move beyond the boundaries of DeltaE<10, and a spurious pink tint appears.

The sRGB emulation mode also does not affect the accuracy of the gamma curves, deep shadows retain an average level of visibility (but I would like a little better), but the color balance and white point settings return to the factory settings.

To reduce eye strain, the manufacturer suggests using Blue Light Filter modes. There are four levels of impact in the settings. The first three have little effect on color temperature and provide the ability to manually adjust brightness. In BLF-4 there is no such possibility, and the points of the gray wedge are in the area of ​​~5000K (outside the studied area of ​​the diagram), but with a green parasitic tint – this is somewhat annoying. However, this is a completely typical setup from Asus.

On the other hand, the contrast in this mode is not reduced – the gamma curves retain their previous appearance, which suggests that eye strain will be reduced only by changing the color temperature and automatically switching to a lower backlight brightness.

Switching back to Racing mode with a full-color gamut and manually adjusting brightness and RGB enabled comfortable monitor use. This setup achieved the correct white point and excellent gray balance. After full calibration, the gamma curves slightly deviated from the reference, but this can easily be circumvented by regular profiling without changes to the graphics card LUT. Using the ICC profile, the Asus XG27AQMR excels in handling color within the sRGB space across both tested states. You can reliably count on its performance for color accuracy.

Gradient uniformity

The installed pseudo-10-bit Fast IPS-type panel was able to demonstrate very high-quality gradients, both with the default settings and after making manual edits.

During a full calibration, applied edits to the LUT of the graphics card led to the appearance of about 4-6 sharper transitions in the 0-30% region with the appearance of a weak spurious tint, which is quite common. This monitor maintains high-quality gradients without the need for GPU LUT adjustments—a significant benefit over many competing gaming displays.

Color temperature stability

Let’s continue our Asus XG27AQMR review by assessing the stability of color temperature in standard and special image modes.

The data presented in this table effectively illustrate the deviations of the points of the gray wedge along the X-axis, yet, it’s crucial to note, they exert no influence on the vertical axis. Furthermore, to accurately assess the presence of spurious shades, one must consult the CIE diagram found in the “Gamma curves and gray balance” subsection, thereby offering a more comprehensive analysis.

The level of color temperature stability was high in all tested presets. Only in Racing + WG, after calibration, did the average value go beyond one percent, and the maximum reached almost 3. But even this result is high.

We will now examine the outcomes of the Color Temp modes and Blue Light Filter settings. It’s important to note that the default setting from the manufacturer is the 6500K preset. Interestingly, its column values perfectly match those in the first table’s Racing + Wide Gamut mode.

The analysis reveals the following insights:

  • The default settings for the 6500K and User modes show a minor difference in color temperature, with the User mode displaying greater stability.
  • The 7500K and 9300K modes closely match their specified color temperatures, making them ideal for those preferring a cooler image.
  • All tested Dynamic Hue (DH) modes consistently maintain a high level of stability.
  • The first three Blue Light Filter (BLF) levels do little to alleviate eye strain, showing similar effects. The fourth level (BLF-4) significantly reduces brightness but introduces an unwanted green hue.

In conclusion, the factory settings are generally reliable. However, for those with the appropriate measuring tools, opting for manual adjustments in User mode may offer tailored visual preferences.

Contrast stability and brightness range

The study assessed contrast stability and brightness range by setting the monitor to Racing mode with full-color gamut. The Brightness value changed from 100 to 0% in steps of 10 units. For the table below, the measured values ​​were obtained through the HCFR program, which makes it possible to more accurately estimate the black level (three decimal places) and accordingly determine a reliable contrast ratio.

With standard settings, the resulting operating brightness range was 49-373 nits with an average contrast ratio (CR) of ~1030:1. The brightness reduction is close to linear. The contrast ratio remains stable across the entire range, exceeding the manufacturer’s claim by 3%. For higher values, you should turn to modern fast IPS Black models, which, however, have their own disadvantages and features.

The upper brightness limit of almost 373 nits exceeds the manufacturer’s stated level of 350 nits for SDR and is a good helper for working conditions with bright ambient lighting. The lower one, 49 nits, is close to the desired minimum and can definitely provide a high level of comfort when working at the monitor in a darkened room.

Enabling HDR automatically turns on Dynamic Dimming and locks most monitor settings. To evaluate brightness levels, we tested the display with various content. During specialized test sequences, we observed a peak brightness of 674 nits. This level remained consistent whether the screen displayed a full white field (100% coverage) or only 10% coverage. Impressively, these results surpass the manufacturer’s advertised brightness for HDR mode, leaving us with nothing to question regarding the display’s performance in this regard.

Response time, Input-lag, Frame drop

The 27-inch 1440p 1ms monitor features a high-speed Fast IPS panel that can reach up to 300 Hz, exceeding its predecessor by 30 Hz. This refresh rate is also 20 Hz higher than that of the similarly priced Dell Alienware AW2723DF (REVIEW). The stated response time of the model is the usual 1 ms according to the GtG method.

To adjust the response speed, the model uses advanced technology for variable acceleration of the response time Variable Overdrive with six degrees of influence (including the Off option). The monitor features second-generation ELM0-Sync “black frame” insertion technology. It includes a manually adjustable Clarity Position, which controls the timing of the “black frame” occurrence. Additionally, the Clarity Level parameter adjusts the pulse width of the “black frame” and consequently affects the scene’s brightness.

Let’s look at the results obtained at the highest possible vertical scan frequency with different Variable OD settings and the most optimal option for ELMB operation in non-synchronized mode:

The device allowed us to measure the monitor output delay time – input lag. In our Asus XG27AQMR review, the monitor achieved an average response time of 2.1 ms when set to a 300 Hz refresh rate. This performance was noted when connected via DisplayPort 1.4 with Display Stream Compression (DSC) and G-Sync Compatible enabled. This is an excellent performance, which is in line with our expectations for this model.

Separately, we note that the Asus ROG Strix XG27AQMR monitor is officially certified as AMD FreeSync Premium Pro, which indicates full support for open Adaptive-Sync and, of course, implies trouble-free work with NVIDIA G-Sync in Compatible mode (there is an official certificate). Everything functions within the 48-300 Hz range, dropping to 144-300 Hz with ELMB activated.

The ROG Strix XG27AQMR handles a 300 Hz maximum refresh rate without frame skipping.

Viewing angles

The Asus XG27AQMR monitor is a classic representative of WQHD with an advanced IPS panel, the viewing angles of which have no complaints.

With minor changes in the viewing angle in the horizontal plane, the picture on the screen does not change at all. If you increase the angle to 30-45 degrees, the image becomes slightly less contrasty, the saturation of some colors decreases slightly, shadows are characteristically brightened, and a spurious tint appears in one or another part of the screen – nothing unusual. When changes occur in the vertical plane, the picture on the screen deteriorates faster.

Backlight uniformity and color temperature

In this Asus XG27AQMR review, we assessed the uniformity of the backlight and color temperature by testing 35 points across the screen with the brightness set to 100 nits. We measured all variations relative to the data from the central point. Notably, this monitor does not incorporate a backlight compensation system.

With the brightness set, the average deviation from the center point was 12.5%, and the maximum was 23%. For this class of devices, the result is below average.

The provided surface diagram illustrates the distribution of brightness across the panel. It reveals a notably small area of peak brightness, which diminishes rapidly as it extends toward the panel’s edges, with this effect being particularly pronounced in the upper region.

Asus XG27AQMR review

The photo displayed above, after undergoing minimal corrections in a graphics editor, serves to offer a clearer visual representation. This enhancement helps illustrate what is happening on the screen, specifically focusing on the uniformity of the light field.

Darker gray fills can demonstrate problems much more clearly. The monitor actually has darkened all edges of the screen, but there are no obvious problems with color temperature uniformity.

Now, let’s examine the uniformity of color temperature across the entire screen.

Testing used manual CT settings to achieve 6500K, keeping the white field brightness at the center point at 100 nits. The result is 1.5% on average and 3.9% at the maximum – the result is above average. The difference between the minimum and maximum did not exceed 471K, which is quite tolerable.

Based on the data and our observations, we found that the tested device exhibits no significant issues with color uniformity. The color temperature slightly increases on the left side, both lower and upper areas. This variation is subtle and may be noticed during use, but it requires close attention.

Final line

In our Asus XG27AQMR review, we note that this gaming monitor embodies a natural progression within the ROG Strix series. Asus has prioritized speed performance in this latest model, leading to a streamlined design approach. As a result, the monitor forgoes the RGB backlighting system and adopts a simpler aesthetic. The panel, while finely tuned for near-perfect performance, does not support the same breadth of color management capabilities found in its predecessors.

At the same time, the appearance became more austere and less flashy, the quality of materials and workmanship remained at the highest level, and the software of the device was clearly updated. Now, when switching to dual color space emulation modes (they can be combined with almost any GameVisual preset), there are no restrictions on brightness adjustment color temperature, and gamma settings. Previously, features like these were exclusive to high-end models such as the PG279QM and the pricier ROG Swift PG27AQN (REVIEW). Now, these advanced features are available on the more affordable ASUS gaming monitors. This is indeed welcome news!

People looking to upgrade from an old 144-160 Hz 27-inch WQHD solution or buying a monitor of this kind for the first time should consider the Asus ROG Strix XG27AQMR, keeping the next 5-7 years in mind. This ASUS monitor has proven its value over the past 6 to 8 months, with competitive pricing on Amazon.com starting at $532.56 and on Amazon.co.uk at £579. If you’re in the market for a reliable monitor from a top-tier brand, this could be your most sensible option. Wishing you success in finding the perfect fit for your needs!

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