Not so long ago, AOC has introduced their first 4K resolution monitor into the Agon gaming series models. Besides the 4K resolution, the AOC AGON AG271UG gaming monitor features Nvidia G-Sync, a 10-bit IPS panel, many gaming features, and a versatile design with a thin bezel and plenty ergonomics. Although a 4K gaming monitor at 60Hz is nothing revolutionary in terms of innovation, it’s still a very pricey experience due to the expensive computer gear it requires. In the end, we can either choose to play games with intense and smooth performance on 1440p 144Hz gaming monitors or enjoy an otherworldly graphics of 4K monitors, but with limited refresh rate and fluidity; well, at least until the 144Hz 4K G-Sync HDR gaming monitors are released.
The IPS panel of the AOC AG271UG ensures accurate and consistent 10-bit colors that cover 100% of the sRGB color gamut and 80% of the Adobe RGB. Additionally, the 178-degree viewing angles make for perfect image quality no matter the angle you’re looking at the screen while the quick 4ms response time eliminates motion blur and ghosting in most of the fast-paced video games. Moreover, we haven’t noticed any backlight bleeding on the screen that could be bothersome.
Due to the low 60Hz refresh rate in comparison to the other 144Hz+ gaming monitors, the AG271UG display is not recommended for the high-end competitive gaming but rather more detail-oriented video games. In competitive FPS games, players with 144Hz and 1ms response time panels will have a significant advantage over you, but they won’t have nearly as vibrant image quality; to each their own. The 4K resolution on a 27-inch screen requires up to 200% scaling for readable text, but it provides an amazing detail clarity due to the high pixel density of 163 pixels per inch.
If you’re planning on purchasing the AOC AG271UG 4K monitor, it’s highly recommended that you have or buy a compatible Nvidia graphics card, so that can use it to its full potential via the Nvidia G-Sync technology which synchronizes the frame rate of your GPU with the monitor’s refresh rate. As a result, there’s no screen tearing and stuttering in video games, input lag is decreased, and the frame rate is more steady and won’t fluctuate. Keep in mind that for a smooth 4K gameplay at 60Hz, you will need an expensive and powerful graphics card to play with high settings, such as the Nvidia GTX 1080Ti.
The AOC AGON AG271UG PC monitor includes all the neat features from its previous models which include the e-Saver and iMenu software that allow you to manage power saving and adjust OSD settings in a desktop application. The monitor also offers the low blue light filter and a flicker-free screen. The gaming experience is enhanced by the AOC Shadow Control which increases visibility in the dark scenes of video games. Additionally, there are several pre-calibrated picture presets for different gaming genres such as FPS and RTS as well as sRGB and user configurable picture modes.
Besides adjusting the amount of shadow control and color levels, you will also be able to select three different gamma levels and five different levels of the overdrive setting. The overdrive feature increases the response time speed, although if increased too much, reverse ghosting artifacts can take over; so, it’s best left at medium. There are five OSD buttons that are placed beneath the bottom bezel with corresponding icons display on the bezel. The buttons can also be used as shortcuts for changing the input selection and adjusting the volume, among other things.
Design & Connectivity
The design of the AOC AGON AG271UG G-Sync monitor consists of the standard trademark Agon series style which includes the headset holder and a carrying handle. Once detached from the base, the monitor can be VESA mounted with 100 x 100mm pattern. Other ergonomic abilities include the pivot function, 130mm height adjustment with a scale, 40 degrees swivel, and -3.5/21.5 degrees of tilt. Besides looking eye-catching, the base has proved to be quite steady and durable. The connector inputs include an HDMI port, a DisplayPort 1.2, four USB 3.0 ports, one of which supports fast charging, and an audio line-out port for the headphones. There are 2x2W built-in speakers as well.
The AOC AGON AG271UG price amounts to $800 at the moment (May 2017). The monitor features the same specifications and nearly identical features, performance, and image quality as the more popular 4K G-Sync gaming monitors, the Acer Predator XB271HK and the ASUS PG27AQ which both are priced at $880.
All three monitors are essentially the same; while the Acer Predator XB271HK offers some extra ergonomic abilities, the AOC AGON AG271UG offers a slightly faster response time, although hardly perceptible. This makes the AOC AG271UG a worthy cheaper alternative.
The other, even cheaper alternative for 4K gaming at 60Hz would be a FreeSync monitor such as the LG 27UD68. Although immensely more affordable, 4K FreeSync monitors suffer from a low dynamic range that amounts to 40-60Hz which is a critical issue since once your FPS (Frames Per Second) drops below the dynamic range, the adaptive-sync stops working. Moreover, there aren’t any AMD graphics cards that are as powerful as the Nvidia GPUs, at the moment.
The AOC AGON AG271UG gaming monitor delivers an amazing image quality thanks to the 4K Ultra HD resolution and the 10-bit color vibrancy of the IPS panel. Moreover, Nvidia G-Sync significantly enhances the gameplay experience which in combination with the Agon gaming features and the quick response time provide an immersive gaming experience. The extensive connectivity and ergonomic options contribute to the convenience and overall flawless impression of the monitor.
Those who aren’t playing competitive and fast-paced video games will be able to fully enjoy this gaming monitor while the professional FPS players should better opt for 144Hz gaming monitors. Lastly, for those who cannot decide between 4k@60Hz and 1440p@144Hz, there are the 1440p ultra-wide 100Hz gaming monitors available which are the perfect middle ground. Some of these monitors are the AG271UG’s big brother, the AOC AGON AG35UCG and the HP Omen X 35. For additional insight on 4K vs the ultra-wide dilemma, check out this article.
The AOC Agon AG271UG is the first 4K monitor from the Agon series. Besides the impeccable image quality thanks to the 4K resolution and the IPS panel, the AOC AG271UG also delivers a smooth gameplay experience with quick response time and Nvidia G-Sync. In addition, the monitor offers plenty of unique game-enhancing features as well as extensive ergonomic and connectivity options.