Asus MX27AQ; An In-Depth Review

Sporting modern, artistic design Asus’ MX and VX series really captured the attention of both consumers and expert reviewers. There’s a myriad of 27-inch monitors in the market today, but only a few sport aesthetic appeal as beautiful as the Asus’ “Designo” series. And with that, Asus threw another beautiful monitor in the market in Asus MX27AQ – a sleek 27-inch monitor that sports IPS panel and runs WQHD resolution, with 100% sRGB color space. But is the monitor as promising as it looks like? Check out this in-depth review from Dual Monitors Guide to know more.

 

Asus MX27AQ (image from Amazon)



Who is it for?

The Asus MX27AQ is undoubtedly one of the best-looking all-around monitors out there today. But its performance is neither specifically made for professionals nor for hardcore gamers. It is made for users looking for a premium monitor with top-notch performance quality for all-around use, especially for multi-media. It is for pro-sumer who does a little bit of everything, from working, watching movies, some editing, and with a little bit of gaming.

 

Benefits

The Asus MX27AQ is a WQHD (2560x1440p resolution) display that features an A+ grade IPS (In-Plane Switching) panel, with 60Hz Refresh Rate. This alone gives you a good idea of the monitor’s mid-range performance, which is already way better than many 27-inch displays with Full HD resolution.

 

Impressive Colour Accuracy and Grayscale Performance

 

For its image quality, Asus opted to use a WLED backlight with flicker-free technology for MX27AQ. It lights up the screen for up to 346 candelas per square millimeter, which is pretty bright than most screens we find in the market today. Even more than enough for standard indoor use.

Like most IPS panels with true 8-bit per channel colour support, colour reproduction of Asus MX27AQ is fantastic.

Based on DisplayMate 64-step grayscale test, this Asus monitor scored impressive scores, with just one step missing. A little tweaking on the calibration of course, can fix brightness and contrast levels to give you the best results.

The screen’s default image quality is almost perfect neutral, which is quite unusual for an un-calibrated monitor, which is actually a good thing. Out-of-the-box colour gamut scored 2.20, which is considered perfect. We normally put Gamma at 1.8, and get 1.81 returned result from the panel.

 

Decent Screen Uniformity, Good Color Fidelity and Contrast for Strong Overall Image Quality

For the screen’s luminance uniformity, it has 13.6% variation on its darkest region and the top-right edge part of the screen, while the middle of the screen is set at 220cd/m2, with readings from eight surrounding regions. This means there’s only a very subtle uniformity variation in this screen, and unnoticeable to the naked eye.

The same goes for its black level, it is not far off. There are a few bright spots in the bottom right corner of the screen, but it’s only a very slight noticeable variation.

Color fidelity is also equally excellent, because even when uncalibrated, the screen has 2.01 Delta-E, 200cd/m2, the screen has a stunning 1.82 average. These are actually impressive numbers for the screen, almost like an AH-IPS performance.

For Contrast, the display scores around 944:1, which is still pretty close to their claim of 1000:1 static specifications.

 

Decently Fast Response Time for Gaming

The 5ms gray-to-gray response time of Asus MX27AQ may be a little short compared to what gaming monitors have. But then again, it’s not a gaming monitor, rather, an all-around monitor with pretty decent response time that works well for any games. Action-packed games like Far Cry 4 looked really nice in 2560x1440 resolution. There were no obvious blurring and smearing.

More demanding games like Battlefield 4 showed some issues, but they’re pretty minor, which users will not really notice unless actively looking for them.

 

 

Good Viewing Angle, Typical for IPS Panels

As with other IPS panels out there, viewing angle of Asus MX27AQ is pretty good, at 178˚ vertical and 165 ˚ horizontal. Colors may start to shift a little when viewing from side angles, but there aren’t any visible changes when viewing vertically.

 

 

Low Power Consumption for its Performance

Surprisingly, power consumption of this all-around Asus monitor is pretty low; only 36W at Standard mode, and around 51W when you fire up everything. Power-Saving mode is at 0.5W.

 

 

Design and Features

Asus MX27AQ (image from Amazon)


Asus Designo MX series are truly works of art. The elegance of Asus MX27AQ’s design, slim profile of its cabinet and the frame-less panel bezel thickness makes it one of the most visually-appealing monitors out there in the market. It sports a very narrow bezel measuring only 0.1cm, which automatically adds excellent bezel-free design to the screen. The screen is coated with a thin, grain-free, anti-glare coating, which helps a lot on allowing the screen product vibrant images, minus annoying glares and reflections.

 

 

Buttons and Controls

The right side of the screen hoses the buttons user interface panel. These physical buttons runs along the backside of the screen, strategically placed and pleasant to use. There is also a small clear light at the corner of the screen, which indicates the monitor’s activity; blue for On, orange for Standby. Unfortunately, it is very easy to confuse the power button with the other buttons, which may cause users to accidentally turn the display off.

The physical buttons reveals the OSD (On-Screen Display), which is the Menu interface, on the bottom right side of the screen. As with other Asus monitors, the Menu system is nicely constructed and intuitive to use. The Main Menu options include Splendid options, Blue Light Filter, Color, Image, Sound, Input Select, System Setup and Shortcut.

Asus MX27AQ (image from Amazon)


The ‘Splendid Technology’ is basically the Preset modes; offer 8 preset options, namely Scenery, Standard, Theater, Game, Night View, sRGB, Reading and Dark Room mode.

Asus also included the ‘Blue Light Filter’ in its Main Menu for easy access to changing the screen’s blue light level. Blue light is known to be harmful for the eyes, and this feature works by reducing the blue light emission of the screen, allowing users to work longer on their computer without hurting their eyes.

Aside from that, the screen is also equipped with TÜV Rheinland certified flicker-free technology, which significantly reduces screen flicker and minimizes the risk of eyestrain.

For fine-tuning, the OSD of this Asus monitor comes with four different settings.

Asus MX27AQ (image from Amazon)


Level 1 is ideal for normal use like web browsing, working on word documents, and good color reproduction, perfect for tasks that involves lifelike visuals and minimal color shift.

Level 2 is dedicated for viewing photos and videos, as it provides excellent balance of colors and improves the screen’s image quality.

Level 3 gives documents real paper look, making it the ideal choice for word processing and reading.

Level 4 is ideal for dim-lit environments, such as room with dim ambient lighting.

For the Color Menu, the selection includes Brightness, Contrast, Saturation, Color Temperature and Skin Tone adjustments. The ‘Image’ menu allows users to adjust the screen’s Sharpness, Aspect Control, Trace Free, VivisPixel and ASCR.

There’s also a control depart for the monitor’s volume level and a Menu to allow adjustments for the onboard audio. Both works well, and though audio output is limited to 3W, it seems enough for most situations. Surprisingly, bass response is pretty decent, though certainly not top-notch, it’s better that what we have come to expect from a built-in speaker. There are four audio modes, namely Music, Movie, Gaming and User, and all options are pretty self-explanatory of their functions.

The System Setup has some of the most important settings, including OSD setup, ECO mode, GamePlus and Demo mode.

Also available is the QuickFit function, a feature that overlay real-life document sizes, from letters, A4, etc., and photos. It makes an alignment grid format on the screen, on top of the opened windows, helping users edit their work better on their computer.

 

Connectivity Options

Asus MX27AQ (image from Amazon)


The backside of the cabinet nicely houses the I/O ports, which includes three HDMI ports (with one MHL 2.0-compatible), one DisplayPort 1.2, earphone jack and power connector.

 

 

With Built-in 3W Speakers

This Asus monitor is equipped with a pair of built-in 3W speakers. They’re not going to replace your dedicated speakers, but they’re pretty decent for general use, such as watching videos and movies as you sit close to your computer. The sound output is obviously limited, and there is some distortion when pushing the volume to highest level.

Also, the pair of speakers packs “The Bang & Olufsen ICEpower technology”, which Asus claims to provide improved sound quality through ample power delivery. Usually, better sound quality means higher power consumption, but this is not the case in this Asus all-around monitor. Rather, it uses highly energy-efficient Class D MobileSound 3 technology, which helps bring power consumption by converting up to 92% of power input to useful audio output.

 

Beautiful Sundial-Style Stand

The lovely design of Asus MX27AQ is paired perfectly with a beautiful sundial-style base, which easily attaches to the stand through a single thumbscrew. Though we always prefer a tool-less design for assembly of monitors, this design right here is justified, considering the safety and stability required for the round base to hold the 27-inch, 12 lbs. cabinet.

Asus MX27AQ (image from Amazon)


It’s definitely an attractive base, sadly, it does keep the monitor from getting full adjustability, as it can only support tilt movement, with +20°~ -5° range.

 

 

Tech Specs

 

Bottom Line

Right from the get-go, you can see the premium-quality of Asus MX27AQs build and performance, which easily justified its mid-range price. The aluminum-finish ultra-thin bezels provide excellent professional appeal, perfect for users looking for a sleek and elegant display to work on in their workstation. It’s thin bezel also makes it one of the few 27-inch displays out there for perfect dual monitor or triple monitor setup, as bezels become seamless when sitting two or three of this display side-by-side.

Performance wise, there isn’t much to complain about this monitor. Image quality is impressive, from colour accuracy and vibrancy, while keeping everything on realistic saturation level. Black level is impressive as well, which also adds punch to the colors. 

 

It also packs a decent pair of built-in 3W speakers, which is not just an upgrade from the traditional 2W we often find in monitors, but mainly for its Bang and Olufsen hardware, which paid dividends in sound quality, be it for general media use or even gaming.

Screen uniformity is pretty good as well, any variations is hard to spot, unless you set the screen at the highest brightness level. Overall image quality is good for Full HD movies as well.

All in all, the Asus MX27AQ is a pretty good all-around monitor. It combines elegant design with good-quality performance. It’s not for professional art standard, but it’s a great display for photographers and designers on a budget.

For more in-depth reviews like this, check out Dual Monitors Guide today!



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