AOC G2460PG ......................................................
N ot only is this Dell the cheapest monitor on test in this group, it also has a 2,560 x 1,440 resolution, which immediately makes it more desirable, and the higher resolution is also primed well to take advantrage of G-Sync’s benefits, over 24in 1080p displays, giving it a higher pixel density.
Along with the Asus PG248Q, it’s one of only two displays on test that use a more expensive low-profile bezel. The external bezel around the top and sides measures just 1.5mm, with the rest of the bezel hidden below the plastic front of the panel itself. It gives the display a really sleek and classy feel compared with all the monitors on test this month.
Dell clearly has a very good eye for subtle design as well. The muted dark metallic grey and black livery proves yet again that you don’t need fancy materials or flashy extras to make a great-looking product. There’s no need for a gaming monitor to come with brightly coloured, angled plastic. The only slip-up is the use of glossy black plastic on the back of the panel. It initially looks fine, but fingerprints and scratches soon mar it.
The good looks are backed up by a solid design too. The Dell’s stand is fully adjustable, with the usual 130mm of height adjustment, and there’s a proper rotating joint on the base, rather than a swivelling bit of plastic underneath. The stand also unclips easily to reveal a 100 x 100mm VESA mount. Meanwhile, video connections are limited to the usual DisplayPort and HDMI sockets, but you get a four-port USB 3 hub, with two ports on the rear and two more on the left side. There’s also a headphone jack on the left, but you don’t get any speakers, which is a bit of a shame.
The OSD and its controls largely work well too. Four buttons sit on the right side of the underside of the frame, and their functions change depending on the menu shown on the screen. The layout is simple and intuitive, and the menus feel logically laid out, providing a good balance of being comprehensive without feeling cluttered.
However, the buttons themselves are a touch unresponsive, so it’s not entirely a frustration-free experience.
Otherwise, the big news with this monitor is that there’s basically no need to jump into the menus, other than to adjust the brightness, because its image quality is so good right out of the box. Most notably, colour temperature is near perfect, so colours immediately look accurate, rather than being too warm or cold. Gamma is also close enough, and there’s plenty of brightness on tap.
The only problem is the low contrast ratio of 674:1. That’s well below the 1,000:1 figure we ideally want, although in use, it wasn’t as noticeable as this figure suggests. Crucially, image quality doesn’t drop when you jump to 144Hz, and there’s none of the washed out, low-gamma problems of this monitor’s bigger sibling, the S2716DG, either. It isn’t perfect – and as with all these displays, it’s not really suitable for content creation, but its image is otherwise fine. It also holds up well in gaming, with no obvious problems with input lag, and the combination of a 144Hz refresh rate, 1ms response time and G-Sync support making 2,560 x 1,440 gaming a very smooth and responsive experience.
In terms of physical design, the Dell S2417DG is the standout winner of this group test. Add in its higher resolution and largely excellent out-of-the-box image quality and it nearly runs away with it. However, a low contrast ratio lets the side down a little. It’s still a great monitor, but not the slam-dunk winner it could have been. Almost the perfect all-rounder, the S2417DG doesn’t quite hit every mark, but it comes darn close. It’s a great monitor at a great price.
The external bezel around the top and sides measures just 1.5mm”