ASUS VG258Q 144Hz Full HD TN model with FreeSync
Pretty much all ~24” 144Hz monitors make use of the same panel. A panel that has been used with little variation since 2011; the AU Optronics M240HW01. A newer variant of this panel is now in circulation, with the AOC G2590PX being one of the first models to make use of the new variant. The ASUS VG258Q also makes use of this panel. In addition to an additional 0.5” of diagonal screen space compared to the old panel, the new panel has a very slim border. The VG258Q takes advantage of this with its ‘dual-stage’ bezel design – the thin panel border is exposed and there’s just a very thin hard outer border around that. The bottom bezel is a bit thicker but still fairly slim, with a black (or very dark grey) matte plastic finish. The OSD (On Screen Display) is controlled by pressable buttons at the rear of the monitor, running vertically down the right side (as viewed from the front). The is also a small joystick for intuitive navigation through the menu system.
A 24.5” TN (Twisted Nematic) panel is used, namely a variant of the AUO M250HTN01. This offers a native 144Hz refresh rate (vs. 120Hz overclocked to 144Hz like the older panels) and also offers support for Adaptive-Sync. That means AMD FreeSync can be used on compatible GPUs and systems, with a variable refresh rate range of 40 – 144Hz. LFC (Low Frame Rate Compensation) also features to help with stuttering or tearing at frame rates below 40fps. The screen has a medium matte anti-glare screen surface, a specified contrast ratio of 1000:1 and as usual for the panel type 170°/160° viewing angles. 8-bit colour is supported (6-bit + FRC dithering) and a flicker-free (DC dimming) WLED backlight is used which offers ~sRGB colour gamut coverage. To further enhance viewing comfort, ‘Ultra-Low Blue Light’ settings feature with 4 different levels of effectiveness. A 1ms grey to grey response time is specified, with the manufacturer’s usual highly flexible ‘Trace Free’ pixel overdrive solution to allow users to adjust acceleration according to taste. A low input lag ‘through mode’ called ‘GameFast’ also features, minimising extraneous processing and also minimising input lag in the process.
Other features of note include the usual ‘GamePlus’ features; an on-screen crosshair, timer, display alignment grid and ‘FPS counter’ (which indicates the refresh rate and therefore gives an FPS indication if FreeSync is active). A strobe backlight solution called ‘Extreme Low Motion Blur’ (ELMB) also features, which can be used by both Nvidia and AMD GPU users (but not in conjunction with FreeSync). The rear of the monitor, shown below, continues the ‘no-fuss’ matte black plastic theme. It keeps things looking pretty low-key for a gaming monitor. With just the signature indentation lines and shapely appearance associated with ASUS gaming monitors rather than obvious bright flashy colours and glossy plastics. The stand attaches centrally and can be removed to make way for an alternative 100 x 100mm VESA solution. The included stand is fully adjustable and offers; tilt, height, swivel and tilt adjustment. The ports are down-firing and include; DC power input (external ‘power brick’), HDMI 1.4, DisplayPort 1.2, Dual-link DVI-D, 3.5mm audio input and 3.5mm headphone jack. 2 x 2W speakers are also included for basic sound output.
Further information on the monitor can be found on ASUS’s website. Information related to availability and pricing is still to come and if time permits we’ll be taking a look at this model.