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MSI MAG274R Full HD IPS model with 144Hz refresh rate

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We aren’t fans of manufacturers pumping out a large number of essentially similar products in a short space of time, we feel it’s confusing for consumers and can make them slightly regret purchases soon after for no good reason. Nonetheless, this seems to be the approach MSI have made with their monitor lines. Hot off the heels of the MSI MAG273R, a model which hasn’t really established a presence in all major regions yet, comes the MAG274R. This addition to the Optix series has a slightly thicker bottom bezel and different stand design to its predecessor. It has a somewhat robust look as a result, with lots of matte plastics used lower down on the product. The top and side bezels sport the now common dual-stage bezel design, with a slim panel border that’s flush with the rest of the screen. And a thin hard plastic outer component. The OSD is controlled by the manufacturer’s preferred method, a red joystick at the rear of the screen (towards the right side as viewed from the front). Or using the ‘Gaming OSD 2.0’ app if you prefer.

A robust appearance

A 27″ IPS-type (In-Plane Switching or similar) panel is employed with 1920 x 1080 (Full HD) resolution, 1000:1 static contrast and 178° horizontal and vertical viewing angles. A 144Hz refresh rate is supported, including AMD FreeSync Premium, with a 48 – 144Hz variable refresh rate range (plus LFC). A matte anti-glare screen surface is included for good glare-handling, whilst 10-bit colour is supported via the usual 8-bit + FRC dithering route. A flicker-free WLED backlight is employed, offering a 300 cd/m² typical maximum luminance and 95% DCI-P3 (132% sRGB) colour gamut coverage. This is a slightly brighter backlight specification than the older model, whilst the colour gamut is a little narrower but still pretty generous. The monitor can respond to HDR10 content, putting its 10-bit colour processing and colour gamut to work. It doesn’t offer a particularly high maximum luminance, though, falling short of even the lowest VESA DisplayHDR standard, and doesn’t offer the contrast-boosting benefits of local dimming

Other aspects to note include Low Blue Light (LBL) settings to enhance relaxing viewing, particularly useful in the evening, and a ‘Night Vision’ gamma enhancement setting to improve visibility for dark content. A 1ms response time is specified. This is an MPRT response time measurement using the ‘Anti Motion Blur’ strobe backlight feature. As usual, don’t pay too much attention to this very misleading figure. The rear of the monitor includes an RGB LED feature (‘Mystic Light’) as a strip above the stand attachment point. This can be controlled using software and through the OSD. The included stand is fully adjustable and can be removed to make way for an alternative 100 x 100mm VESA compatible solution. The ports face downwards and include; DC power input (external ‘power brick’), DP 1.2a, 2 HDMI 2.0b ports, USB-C (15W PD + DP Alt Mode), 2 USB 2.0 ports and a 3.5mm headphone jack.

Mystic lights

Further details can be found on the manufacturer’s website. The monitor is listed for ~$250.