Solid performance. Stylish. Plenty of video inputs. Wide viewing angles.
Pricey. Tilt-only stand. Lacks USB ports.
- Bottom Line
The 27-inch AOC Q2781PQ is a sleek-looking In-Plane Switching (IPS) monitor that offers accurate colors, solid grayscale performance, and a generous assortment of video inputs.
Designed for everyday use, the AOC Q2781PQ ($499) offers all of the things you'd expect from a good In-Plane Switching (IPS) monitor, including accurate colors, solid grayscale reproduction, and wide viewing angles. It's a nice-looking 27-inch WQHD display and is equipped with plenty of video inputs, though not as many as our top pick for midrange big-screen monitors, the BenQ PD2710QC. But if your budget is strictly limited to $500, the AOC Q2781PQ is worth a look.
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Design and Features
With its zero-bezel design, thin, glossy-black cabinet, and unique angular stand, the Q2781PQ is a real head turner. In order to maintain a clean aesthetic, there are no function buttons visible on the frame; instead, they are tucked away under the front edge, off to the left. The metal stand allows you to tilt the cabinet forward and backward, but lacks height, swivel, and pivot adjustments. The rear of the cabinet holds multiple video inputs, including two HDMI ports, a DisplayPort, and a legacy VGA port. There's also a headphone jack, but you won't find any USB ports on this model.
The IPS panel has a non-reflective coating, a 2,560-by-1,440 resolution, a 350 cd/m2 peak brightness, a 1,000:1 contrast ratio, a 5-millisecond pixel response, a 16:9 aspect ratio, and a 60Hz refresh rate. Picture settings include Brightness, Contrast, Gamma, Sharpness, six picture presets (Standard, Text, Internet, Game Movie, and Sport), and five Color Temperature settings (Warm, Normal, Cool, sRGB, and User). You can adjust red, green, and blue intensity levels in the Color Temperature User mode, but you don't get the advanced six-color adjustments that you get with the BenQ SW2700PT.
AOC covers the Q2781PQ with a three-year warranty on parts, labor, and backlight. Included in the box are HDMI and DisplayPort cables (one each) and a resource CD containing drivers and a user guide.
The Q2781PQ delivered accurate colors out of the box. On the chromaticity chart below, the colored dots represent our color measurements, and the boxes represent the ideal CIE coordinates for each color. As illustrated, red, green, and blue colors are very closely aligned with their ideal coordinates, indicating accurate color calibration. Colors appeared well saturated while watching scenes from Stranger Things on Netflix and Marvel's The Avengers on Blu-ray, and there was no obvious tinting in my test images.
In the DisplayMate 64-Step Grayscale test, the monitor did a fine job of displaying every shade of gray and delivered sharp shadow and highlight detail. Viewing angles were nice and wide, with no obvious color shifting or dimming. Although it doesn't offer the anti-tearing and accelerated refresh rates of it gamer-centric stablemate, the AOC Agon AG271QX, the Q2781PQ can be pressed into duty for casual gaming; just be prepared to deal with minor motion blur and occasional screen tearing. However, input lag will not be an issue; our Leo Bodnar Video Signal Lag Tester registered a low lag of 9.6 milliseconds, which is just a hair longer than our two leaders, the Lenovo L27q and the BenQ SW2700PT, both of which measured 9.5 milliseconds.
See How We Test Monitors The Q2781PQ consumed 31 watts of power while operating with the Standard preset enabled. That's a bit more than the BenQ PD2710QC (27 watts), the Lenovo L27q (23 watts), and the Philips Brilliance Full HD Curved LCD Monitor (279X6QJSW) (24 watts), but still better than the HP Envy 27 (37 watts) and the AOC Agon AG271QX (35 watts).
If you're in the market for a sleek-looking 27-inch display for everyday use that offers solid performance and a sharp WQHD image, the AOC Q2781PQ is definitely worth consideration. Its IPS panel delivers accurate colors right out of the box, it aced our grayscale and viewing-angle performance tests, and it is more than adequate for casual gaming. The lack of USB ports is a drawback, but if you plan to hook up to several video sources, the dual HDMI ports will come in handy. Our Editors' Choice for midrange big-screen monitors, the BenQ PD2710QC, is also a solid performer and a bit more expensive than the Q2781PQ, but it is loaded with I/O ports, including USB-C and USB 3.0 ports, a LAN port, and numerous video ports, and it offers a docking station for laptop users.
By John R. Delaney Contributing Editor
As a Contributing Editor for PCMag, John Delaney has been testing and reviewing monitors, TVs, PCs, networking and smart home gear, and other assorted hardware and peripherals for almost 20 years. A 13-year veteran of PC Magazine's Labs (most recently as Director of Operations), John was responsible for the recruitment, training and management of the Labs technical staff, as well as evaluating and maintaining the integrity of the Labs testing machines and procedures. Prior to joining Ziff Davis, John spent six years in retail operations for… More »
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