The top, left and right edges are effectively borderless
If you’re an avid competitive PC gamer, a fast 144Hz gaming monitor provides a huge leap in responsiveness over a regular 60Hz screen, assuming your graphics card can keep up with the required frame rate. The smoother frame rate will help you to see enemies faster and react a millisecond sooner. Plus, it just looks better than a regular display. What’s more, you don’t have to spend a fortune either, as proved by the AOC G2590PX, which costs just £277 inc VAT.
This 24.5in 1080p gaming monitor also features AMD FreeSync, to eliminate tearing artefacts if you’re using an AMD GPU. It has a stylish design with a minimal bezel on three sides, along with a decent array of connections and a fully adjustable stand.
At the time of writing, the AOC G2590PX retails for £247 inc VAT from
www.ginger6.com. At this price, it isn’t short of competitors; there’s the Acer XF240H at around £190 inc VAT, AOC’s own G2460PF (see Issue 167, p53) at around £210 inc VAT and the BenQ ZOWIE XL2411 (see Issue 167, p56) for around £230 inc VAT. These monitors admittedly don’t have the same attractive, minimalist styling as the G2590PX, but they all have 144Hz 1080p TN panels. The class leader in this price bracket, however, is the Samsung C24FG70 (see Issue 176, p34), which costs around £230 inc VAT. It uses a VA panel and delivers superior colour accuracy and a higher contrast ratio than any other monitor we’ve tested at this price.
As we mentioned earlier, the G2590PX’s best feature is its elegant, minimalist design. The top, left and right edges are effectively borderless, and only the bottom edge has a chunky bezel. The red and black colour scheme looks good too – it makes the monitor stand out from the usual black designs, but without going over the top.
The G2590PX’s design is also still practical. The stand can pivot into portrait orientation, tilt back and forth from -3.5 to 19.5 degrees and you can adjust the height by 130mm as well. If you want an even more flexible setup, or you prefer to wall-mount your monitor, there’s a 100 x 100mm VESA mount at the back as well.
Meanwhile, the connection options are pretty standard. Video inputs are covered by a pair of HDMI 1.4 ports, a single DisplayPort 1.2 socket and one 15-pin VGA port. There are four Type-A USB 3 ports at the back of the monitor as well, one of which offers fast-charging capabilities, and you also get a 2W speaker built into the unit. You won’t want to listen to music on the speaker, though, as the sound is far too tinny and lacks bass.
The on-screen controls for the monitor are comprehensive too, and include a full set of picture controls. The options include adjustments for colour temperature, contrast and overdrive, with an input lag mode thrown in for good measure.
Finally, as we mentioned earlier, this monitor also supports AMD’s FreeSync technology in the 30Hz to 144Hz range. If you own a compatible graphics card with an AMD GPU, you’ll be able to enjoy tear-free gaming. Of course, there’s also standard v-sync support for owners of Nvidia graphics cards, but it adds a fair amount of input lag.
Image quality It all looks good for the AOC G2590PX on the surface, but the image quality from its 24.5in 1080p TN panel is its undoing. Our in-house X-Rite i1 Display Pro colour calibrator revealed poor colour accuracy, among a number of other weaknesses. The average delta E was 2.91 with a maximum of 6.26, and to be fair, this is on a par with other monitors in its category. However, it was the low 373:1 contrast ratio that disappointed, resulting in grey-looking dark scenes, while colours lack vibrancy.
To make matters worse, we measured the monitor’s sRGB gamut coverage (in sRGB mode) at a comparatively low 89 per cent. The Samsung C24FG70 is far more impressive, achieving 99.6 per cent sRGB gamut coverage.
At least the AOC G2590PX’s peak brightness is pretty good. The monitor reached a brightness level of 405cd/m² in User mode, and 349cd/m² in sRGB mode, promising good readability in bright ambient light. Its brightness uniformity isn’t bad for a gaming monitor either, with a maximum variance of 16.5 per cent in the top left-hand corner of the screen. Gaming performance Colour accuracy and contrast ratio aside, the most important aspect of this monitor is its gaming performance. The G2590PX works well with Overdrive set to Medium. However, with Overdrive set to Strong there’s plenty of inverse ghosting, or purple haze. In this mode, we found the panel a tad sluggish compared with its rivals as well. Its input lag could be lower and its response time is a touch high. While its performance will be fine for most people, it won’t satisfy more demanding gamers looking for the fastest, most responsive screen. Conclusion The G2590PX is a stylish 144Hz monitor with some practical features, but it isn’t as responsive as some of its rivals and its colour accuracy and contrast ratio are disappointing too. If you’re a competitive gamer on a tight budget, the Samsung C24FG70 is a better buy, combining great design with decent gaming performance, along with sterling image quality.