The Q27V4EA nails the basics and looks the part without costing a fortune
- Great price
- Big, accurate panel
- Stylish design
- Limited stand
- Extreme IPS glow
- Light on features
The AOC Q27V4EA is a great demonstration of AOC’s ability to make good products at fair prices. This monitor packs a good number of desirable characteristics into its slim frame, and it does so without blowing a hole in your bank account.
If your priority is getting that resolution and screen size bump – particularly over something like a laptop screen – the Q27V4EA is a solid choice. It isn’t the most fully featured 27in monitor I’ve ever reviewed, but it’s definitely got it where it counts.
AOC Q27V4EA review: What do you get for the money?
For around the £200 mark (the price is subject to a fair bit of variation from retailer to retailer), the AOC Q27V4EA offers a 27in IPS panel with a resolution of 2,560 x 1,440, a refresh rate of 75Hz, adaptive sync support and a G2G response time of 4ms.
This panel is mounted on a fairly basic stand with little in the way adjustment capabilities – just 21.5 degrees of backwards tilt – and a relatively unadventurous selection of ports. On the rear, you’ll find one HDMI 2.0 input, one DisplayPort 1.4 and a 3.5mm headphone jack.
AOC kindly packs both HDMI and DP cable types in the box alongside a power supply and an assortment of documents. Sadly, you’ll have to find room for a small power brick on or under your desk, but that’s hardly a huge problem.
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AOC Q27V4EA review: What do we like about it?
There are two things to love about the AOC Q27V4EA. The first is the design. AOC has created a good-looking monitor here: with three bezel-less edges and a slim profile (40mm at its thickest, less than 20mm at its thinnest), it looks much more expensive than it is. Although the stand isn’t particularly versatile, it looks the part, and at 210 x 185mm with virtually zero height to it, the base is fairly inconspicuous on your desk.
That’s not to say that the Q27V4EA isn’t at all practical. I much prefer having the ports facing outwards along the rear of the panel as they are here rather than downwards, as it makes plugging in and unplugging cables so much easier.
The second thing to love about the Q27V4EA is the panel itself. When tested, the IPS panel proved better than those found on many similar budget monitors. In its dedicated sRGB mode, the monitor delivered 88.7% coverage of the sRGB gamut, with an average delta E colour variance score of 1.48. That’s pretty good for a cheap monitor and means the Q27V4EA reproduces a broad spectrum of colours; plus, what you see on screen in photos and on websites will be pretty close to what the originator intended (assuming they were using similarly accurate equipment in the creation process).
I measured peak luminance at just below the 250cd/m² quoted by AOC, while contrast reached highs of 850:1 in the monitor’s default mode. These figures are good for a budget monitor, although it is worth noting that luminance is locked to around 170cd/m² in sRGB mode. This is on the dim side but it’s fine for use in all but the most brightly lit rooms.
The AOC Q27V4EA might not win any awards for its panel, then, but I’m happy to report that the monitor is good to work on. And with a 75Hz refresh rate, a low response time and generic adaptive sync support, it’s not bad for a bit of after-hours gaming, either.
AOC Q27V4EA review: What could be better?
There is, however, one caveat. The panel is pretty good from a performance perspective, but it suffers from an unusual amount of IPS glow. While a small amount of glow is fairly common in IPS panels, it’s particularly obvious here, and it means that if you move away from the monitor in any direction the panel appears to be reflecting a bright off-white light.
It’s not quite the same as poor viewing angles, as colours don’t change when you view the monitor at a narrow angle. What it means is that if you aren’t working with the monitor correctly positioned in front of you, some areas of the panel will appear darker or lighter than others. In other words, you’ll notice it when you walk past or towards the screen, but not when you’re using it, which is what redeems the Q27V4EA.
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I’ve already touched on the monitor’s uninspiring stand and port selection, but it bears repeating here. If you’re after massive amounts of versatility, you should consider a 1440p monitor such as the Iiyama ProLite XUB2792QSU-B1 – one of the few that comes in under £300 without sacrificing on visual quality, stand adjustability or quantity of ports.
The only other thing that proved troublesome was the onscreen display. While I do like AOC’s simple user interface, the controls are just a cluster of buttons in the bottom-right corner, and as such it’s quite hard to tell which one does what – particularly given that the descriptive icons are tiny and almost invisible unless you have a torch to hand. It takes some getting used to.
AOC Q27V4EA review: Should you buy it?
The AOC Q27V4EA is a simple monitor. It works best as a quick fix to a screen real estate deficit – if you’ve finally given up trying to work from your laptop screen and need something a bit more comfortable to work on. The panel performs well and its gaming credentials gain it extra kudos.
There’s nothing astonishing here, but if you want an attractive, straightforward monitor with a decent panel, the Q27V4EA is a great choice at a tempting price.
|AOC Q27V4EA – Specifications
|2,560 x 1,440
|Panel refresh rate
|Panel response time
|Adaptive sync support
|1 x HDMI 2.0, 1 x DP 1.4, 1 x 3.5mm
|2 x 2W speakers
|Dimensions (with stand)
|462 x 613.7 x 187.2mm (HWD)
|Weight (with stand)