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HP Z27u G3 review: Big on style, but the display is lacking

Mike Jennings
7 Jan 2022
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
383
inc VAT

A stylish and versatile office display that’s packed with features, although the image quality is merely mainstream

Pros 
Attractive design
Plentiful ports
Decent flexibility
Cons 
Mediocre display
Obnoxious image-sharpening mode
No built-in speakers
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With tiny bezels, a slim stand and solid build quality, the HP Z27u G3 makes a great first impression. The screen is only 38mm thick, and the entire unit takes up just 230mm of space from front to back. There’s even 150mm of height adjustment, alongside portrait mode pivoting, and generous amounts of tilt and swivel.

The HP has DisplayPort 1.4 input and output connectors, so you can daisy-chain secondary screens. It also has four USB-A 3 ports, with two on the side, and its USB-C port supports DisplayPort and a whopping 100W of power delivery. You also get Gigabit Ethernet and HDMI ports.

The attractive design pairs with a solid spec. It’s a 27in IPS screen with a resolution of 2,560 x 1,440, and that makes sense for everyday workloads: it’s more spacious than the average 1080p monitor, and the 109ppi density level means everything looks crisp.

It performed well in testing, too. A maximum brightness of 361cd/m² is enough for any indoor environment, while the 1,060:1 contrast ratio gives it vibrancy without oversaturation. A Delta E of 1.12, 91.3% sRGB gamut coverage and colour temperature of 6405K ensure that this panel handles sRGB colours (and Rec. 709) accurately. But don’t be fooled by the DCI-P3 screen mode, as it covers only 64% of that space and 65% of the Adobe RGB gamut.

The HP has mediocre uniformity levels: its backlight lost 16% of its strength in the top-left corner and 18% along the top edge. And while the peak refresh rate of 60Hz is par for the course, I would like more for smooth gaming or animation.

There’s one final issue. The HP has an image-sharpening mode that’s impossible to deactivate. At its default level, it’s barely noticeable. At its sharpest, it makes text too crisp with a little discolouration, and at the softer levels, the screen is barely usable.

The Z27u G3 has no speakers, no headphone jack, no KVM switch, no USB-B port and no webcam. However, the features it does have, and its standout design, mean it’s still a worthy buy.