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AOC AGON AG271QX review: Great for gaming, but also everything else

Christopher Minasians
12 Jan 2017
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
410
inc VAT

An impressive 2,560 x 1,440 gaming monitor, with a 144Hz refresh rate and good all-round performance

Pros 
Impressive resolution and refresh rate at its price point
Low perceived input lag
Build quality and design
Cons 
Washed-out colours
Overshoot ghosting with Overdrive enabled
Viewing angles
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There’s an ever-increasing number of gaming monitors on the market today and AOC’s new AGON line of monitors is another to add to the list. The AG271QX TN is the first we’ve seen from the range, and with its aggressive red-and-black design, it certainly looks the part.

It has a lot to offer, too. Running 144Hz at 1440p and available for around £410, the monitor is right up there with some of the very best monitors on the market, such as my personal favourite, the now-discontinued Acer XF270HU.

READ NEXT: Acer Predator XB270HU G-Sync monitor review

AOC AGON AG271QX review: Features, design and build quality

The AG271QX is stacked with features, one of which will interest AMD-GPU owners, and that is the inclusion of AMD FreeSync. When you have it hooked up to an AMD-compatible graphics card, the AGON AG271QX will synchronise its refresh rate with your GPU’s output, providing tear-free gaming. AOC also makes an IPS Nvidia G-Sync-compatible model – the 165Hz AG271QG – which costs £550.

It’s well made, with a sturdy stand that offers full pivot, height and tilt adjustments, and it looks great, with a red-and-black theme and a matte-silver foot. The bezels are nice and thin as well.

On the side is a handy fold-out arm, which can be used to hook your headphones onto the right-hand side of the monitor. You’ll find four USB 3 ports at the rear, two to the right (one of which can be used to fast-charge your smartphone) and two beneath the screen.

The monitor also has a pair of 3.5mm jacks, one for headphones and one for your mic, and as for video inputs, you get DisplayPort 1.2, DVI, VGA and a pair of HDMI sockets, one of which is MHL-compatible.

Despite being part of the AGON gaming line, the monitor shares the same OSD as other AOC monitors, and that’s a good thing: I’ve always found the AOC interface easy to use and feature-rich.

Within the OSD, you can adjust the gamma, colour temperature, and fine-tune the red, green and blue levels. There are also options for a low-input lag mode, Overdrive and a blue-light filter if you’re worried about your late-night gaming habit disrupting your sleep patterns.

AOC AGON AG271QX review: Image quality

The AG271QX employs a 2,560 x 1,440 TN LCD panel, which means its viewing angles aren’t fantastic. On the plus side, it does boast an impressive 1ms quoted response time – more on this below.

When tested with our X-Rite i1 Display Pro calibrator and DisplayCAL, the monitor achieved an impressive 96.5% sRGB colour-gamut coverage, an impressive result for a TN panel, suggesting it has been calibrated out of the box. Speaking of colours, I found colour accuracy was impressive, too. With an average Delta E of 0.8, photo and video editors and designers can be confident that what they see onscreen will be a close match to real-world printouts and broadcasts.

Brightness is perfectly fine at 307cd/m2 in sRGB mode (it will go brighter, but this mode limits brightness to 90%) and I measured the contrast ratio at 1,078:1. The latter isn’t a bad result by any means, but it does lag behind VA panel monitors, which stretch out to 2,000:1 and beyond. If you’re used to gaming on such a screen, the colours might look a little washed out to you.

AOC AGON AG271QX review: Gaming performance

Of course, the AGON AG271QX has one purpose – gaming – and at that, it’s very good indeed.

Through my own tests and experience of using the Logitech G502 gaming mouse on Counter Strike: Global Offensive, I found the AG271QX extremely responsive, while also offering low input lag (with Low Input Lag mode enabled).

The monitor’s response time can be reduced still further using Overdrive, but I found that with Strong Overdrive enabled there was noticeable ghosting, which was unpleasant. In comparison, both the ViewSonic XG2703-GS and Asus ROG Swift PG279Q don’t have visible ghosting with Overdrive ramped up, but it should be noted that they also cost much more than the AG271QX.

If you’re not going to be gaming competitively, the Medium Overdrive setting provides that sweet spot of relatively low response time and little to no ghosting, and this, combined with an impressively sharp 1440p panel, means games look great.

READ NEXT: Best monitors

AOC AGON AG271QX review: Verdict

It’s safe to say that gaming is the AOC AGON AG271QX’s forte: it’s very responsive and offers low input lag. It’s ideal for those looking to upgrade from a Full HD 60Hz screen.

What’s impressive about this monitor is that it’s strong across the board. It’s not only a great gaming screen but also a superb all-rounder, with accurate colours, fantastic build quality and design, plus a wide range of inputs and outputs. That makes it an impressive monitor for any application.