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LG 27GL850 144Hz Gaming Monitor Review – RTINGS.com

September 22, 2019


Hey there, I’m Daniel from RTINGS.com. Alright, so today we’re going to test the
LG 27GL850. It is part of their UltraGear gaming lineup,
and has been highly anticipated due to the new fourteen forty p and one hundred forty
four hertz ips panel. In this review, we’re going to look at the
design of the monitor and then go over our tests results for picture quality, motion
handling, and input lag. We’ll be comparing with three other popular
gaming monitors – the Gigabyte Aorus AD27QD, ASUS ROG Swift PG279QZ and Dell S2719DGF. Check out the description for timestamp links
if you’d like to skip ahead to any part of our testing. Okay, let’s get this monitor onto our rotating
table and start with the design. So overall, the design looks very similar
to other monitors in LG’s UltraGear line. On the front you can see the NVIDIA G-Sync
logo – note that this is a FreeSync rather than G-Sync monitor, but this sticker indicates
G-Sync compatibility which we’ll talk about later. This monitor has an external power adapter,
which has its upsides and downsides. On one hand, it is another component to keep
somewhere, but it also makes it easy to replace if you have any issues with the power supply. Like many monitors, this LG has a thicker
bottom border but overall they are pretty thin and aren’t distracting. The stand has a wide footprint and supports
the monitor well – with a decent range of ergonomic adjustments. You can adjust the height and swivel, as well
as turn it to portrait. Now looking at the back, there’s a red ring
but unlike some other LGs this doesn’t have any RGB lighting. There’s also a fairly comprehensive range
of inputs with a display port and two HDMI connections. There’s an upstream USB port so you can
connect devices like your keyboard and mouse to the monitor with the two USB 3.0 connections. There’s no speakers on the monitor, but
there is a 3.5 millimeter jack so you can connect headphones if you want, with adjustable
volume on the monitor’s on screen display. Speaking of the on-screen display, it works
fine and is arranged well. The joystick at the front works well for navigation
too. So that’s it for the design, and we’ll
move on with the picture quality. Now, a display’s measured contrast ratio
tells us how deep the blacks are once we set the brightness of the monitor. This is important for those in a dark room,
as a low contrast results in blacks that appear gray. This monitor is in the same ballpark as other
monitors that have IPS or TN type panels. It has a low contrast, so blacks do appear
gray in the dark but in a well-lit room it isn’t an issue. Our measured contrast is towards the lower
end of LG’s specifications for this monitor, which are between seven hundred and one thousand
to one. However, within this range the contrast difference
really isn’t very noticeable and the result is the same. If you do care about deep blacks, then a monitor
with a VA type panel may be a better choice. Now although IPS type panels have some problems
with dark scenes, they do have the advantage of better viewing angles compared to VA panel
types. This is important for those who care about
picture quality because the sides of the screen remain accurate when viewed from directly
in-front. This is especially noticeable when comparing
the vertical viewing angles to the Dell S2719DGF which has a TN type panel. Now, these next two tests are important for
those who plan to use the monitor in a room with a lot of light. This is because a high peak brightness helps
to overcome glare. This LG monitor has a good brightness in SDR,
at about three hundred and fifty nits across the screen, so shouldn’t have any problems
even in a fairly bright room. The other important factor for a bright room
is reflection handling. The 27GL850 has a semi-gloss finish which
diffuses reflections across the screen. This smearing of reflections helps to reduce
their intensity, and should be fine for most rooms. As we can see in the photo, it offers very
similar performance to these other monitors. Now for the color accuracy. The 27GL850 comes factory calibrated, and
LG provides the calibration sheet in the box. We found the accuracy to be great overall,
as the color temperature closely matches our sixty-five hundred kelvin target and the measurements
lie fairly close to the color of checker targets. This should be fine for most people. Now, a wide color gamut is useful if you plan
to use a wider color space such as Adobe RGB for photo editing, or want to watch HDR content. This monitor does have a wide color gamut
as it is able to exceed sRGB, however it isn’t as wide as other wide color gamut monitors. It has fairly good but not complete coverage
of the adobe RGB color space. So, this monitor also supports HDR, however
the performance is a bit disappointing. The HDR color gamut is decent, but not really
enough to make highlights pop in games. The monitor also can’t really produce bright
highlights in HDR as it can’t boost areas of the screen like more expensive displays
with local dimming. Overall, this is about what we expected because
HDR support on monitors is still in a very early stage. We’re now going to move on to our motion
tests, which is where things start to get really interesting. This monitor has a one hundred and forty-four
hertz refresh rate, which is great for fast paced gaming as it helps for a low input lag
– which we’ll see later. Overall, it also helps for games to feel smooth
and responsive. Now, this monitor is certified as ‘G-Sync
compatible’. This means that although it supports the competing
FreeSync variable refresh rate technology, it meets NVIDIAs certification criteria. You can see our video linked below to learn
more about this, but basically the result is that FreeSync on this monitor works straight
away with a compatible NVIDIA graphics card. Overall, this is great for fast-paced and
tear-free gaming, and we were able to test the variable refresh rate range from below
twenty hertz up to one hundred and forty four hertz without tearing. A fast response time is also important for
gaming, to reduce the amount of motion blur. This monitor has four response time options,
called ‘Off’ ‘Normal’ ‘Fast’ and ‘Faster’. The overall performance of this monitor is
very good, and it is one of the fastest IPS panels we’ve tested. You can see plots of each of our response
time measurements at one hundred and forty four hertz, as well as the resulting moving
logo photo to show how motion looks. The ‘Off’ response time is slowest, and
the transitions speed up as the setting increases. We found the ‘Fast’ setting to perform
best, with the fastest response time before introducing too much distracting overshoot. We haven’t tested at 60Hz to see how it
performs. Now, a low input lag is also very important
to reduce the delay between an action in-game, and when you see it on the screen. This LG monitor also has a very low input
lag, at about four milliseconds for the native resolution and refresh rate. This is excellent, and in line with other
great one hundred and forty four hertz monitors. The sixty hertz input lag is a bit slower,
but this is normal for all monitors and it is still in the same ballpark as the competition. So overall, the LG 27GL850 is a great monitor,
but especially stands out for gaming. It has one of the fastest response times we’ve
tested, as well as low input lag and decent picture quality. It is in close competition to the Gigabyte
Aorus AD27QD which offers many of the same features. We found the LG to have slightly better motion
handling though, which may be slightly better for demanding gamers. The Aorus has a few more features though like
black frame insertion to clear up motion blur, and a neat noise cancellation option for headset
use. In ASUS ROG Swift line of gaming monitors,
the PG279QZ is a very popular model for it’s great performance. Both are 1440p monitors with high refresh
rates, but the ASUS is overclockable up to one hundred and sixty five hertz. The LG has a faster response time though,
and supports HDR although it doesn’t add much. The S2719DGF is a gaming monitor from Dell
with a TN type panel. As a result, the LG has better picture quality
which is especially noticeable as the sides of the screen remain accurate. The LG also supports HDR, but this doesn’t
add much. Usually TN panels tend to have better motion
handling with a faster response time, but the LG is the exception to this rule and offers
slightly better motion handling too. So that’s it! With all the hype surrounding this monitor,
it is great to see the impressive motion handling, even if the picture quality doesn’t stand
out. If you’ve bought it, then let us know how
you find it in the comments below. You can check out all of the measurements
on our website. If you like this video, subscribe to our channel,
or become a contributor. Thank you for watching and see you next time.

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