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LG UltraGear 27GN950 review: A stellar gaming monitor with beautiful colours

Our Rating :
£650.00 from
Price when reviewed : £749
inc VAT

A stunning 4K screen with all the RGB trimmings, but you’ll need a colorimeter to take full advantage of its talents


  • Exceptional for gaming
  • Bright and vivid colours
  • Compatible with G-Sync and FreeSync


  • Lack of swivel on the stand
  • Expensive

In a world where Nvidia charges £1,500 for a consumer graphics card, LG’s £749 asking price for the 27in UltraGear 27GN950 doesn’t seem so crazy. Especially when that monitor offers a 4K resolution, refresh rates up to 144Hz and compatibility with AMD FreeSync Premium Pro and Nvidia G-Sync. For the occasions when you want to watch films rather than play games, there’s VESA DisplayHDR 600 certification.

But it’s gaming where this screen excels, with a vividness that’s a world apart from everyday IPS monitors. There’s a richness to colours that will make futuristic, neon-lit worlds look exactly like their creators intended.

LG UltraGear 27GN950 review: Features

Naturally, LG adds some RGB bling for good measure, but unlike MSI’s curved 34in Optix MPG341CQR, which included a strip of lights on the front, the LG supplies its LEDs as a colour ring at the rear. 

There are plenty more features for gamers, including a choice of crosshairs, four colour presets and extra control over response times: Normal, Fast and Faster. This screen also supports LG’s Black Stabilizer technology to lift details in dark corners, as well as its answer to input lag: Dynamic Action Sync (DAS) mode.

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DAS mode can only be switched on and off, but you can take fine control over Black Stabilizer and may find it more useful than adjusting contrast or brightness. You access all these controls from a nippy OSD controlled by a mini joystick built into the underside of the screen.

It reminds me of an old-style IBM TrackPoint, complete with the option of pressing to select – which you need to do once you’ve settled on an option. There’s also a scroll wheel to the right of the joystick that you can use to switch between presets for the LED colour ring, but LG offers its Control Center software if you want to take full control.

That software is a nice-to-have. What’s vital to download, if you happen to own a colorimeter such as the X-Rite i1 Display Pro, is LG’s Calibration Studio. With both software and hardware in place, you can calibrate the monitor to colour spaces such as sRGB and Rec.709.

LG UltraGear 27GN950 review: Performance

And it’s well worth doing: in the monitor’s preset sRGB mode, it covered 98% of the sRGB gamut with 126% volume, while the average Delta E was 1.73 and the maximum was a poor 5.14. Ideally, you want Delta E to be under one and the volume percentage to match the coverage or the display will show colours outside of the designated gamut.

After I’d calibrated to sRGB mode, it covered 95% of the gamut with 95% volume, while average Delta E dropped to 0.45 and the maximum to 1.32. Those are stunningly accurate results. What’s more, it almost perfectly hit the target colour temperature of 6500K with a 6513K measurement.

You can also calibrate to the panel’s “native” colour gamut, which is essentially DCI-P3. Here, it covered 96% of that space with a volume of 100%, while Delta E stayed low with an average of 0.52 and maximum of 1.34. Again, that’s an exceptional set of figures.

While it’s annoying that you need a colorimeter to get the most out of this panel – LG should really be doing the hard work at the factory, even allowing for the fact that colours drift over time – it shows the quality of both the panel and the electronics that power it.

And for anyone who doesn’t care about colour accuracy, it won’t matter a jot: they’ll simply switch on this monitor and admire the rich colours. Add a TV stick with HDR support and you can also enjoy the benefits of VESA DisplayHDR 600 certification. In theory, at least. While series such as Our Planet look superb on the LG, the HDR effect isn’t as retina-searing as the VESA certification may lead you to believe.

Despite LG’s best efforts, the IPS technology inside this monitor is still no match for OLED when it comes to viewing high-contrast content. Whilst in picky mode, I should point out that the HDMI ports are limited to 2 rather than 2.1.

HDMI 2’s more limited bandwidth means frame rates can’t go beyond 60fps in 4K mode (at 8-bit colour), which is why you’ll need to connect over DisplayPort to enjoy this panel’s 144Hz refresh rate at 4K. Also note there’s no USB-C connection, which reduces the usefulness of the two-port USB hub, although one will prove handy for powering a TV stick.

My final criticism will be less important to most buyers, but anyone who likes a flexible stand should note the lack of swivel on offer. I also like to see more tilt than the -10° and +15° here, but at least there’s a respectable 110mm of height adjustment.

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LG UltraGear 27GN950 review: Verdict

So the 27GN950 has its flaws, and you should note them all before spending this much money. That said, this is a high-quality and fast panel that makes games look gorgeous. From a gamer’s point of view, it’s far better to have that than a lesser 4K panel with HDMI 2.1, a USB-C connection and the world’s most flexible stand.

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