Acer has quietly introduced two new curved gaming monitors that offer premium gaming features such as 144 Hz FreeSync and HDR10 support for relatively affordable prices. Acer’s XZ1-series LCDs share design elements with the company’s aggressively-styled Predator displays and will definitely appeal to those looking for inexpensive monitors with serious gaming capabilities.

Acer’s XZ1 family currently consists of two displays: the 27-inch XZ271Ubmijpphzx (XZ271U) and the 31.5-inch XZ321QUbmijpphzx (XZ321QU). Both monitors are based on 16:9 aspect ratio curved VA-type panels featuring a 2560×1440 resolution, 250 - 300-nits brightness, a 3000:1 contrast ratio, 1 ms MPRT response times, and a 144 Hz refresh rate. Acer says that the monitors cover 85% of the NTSC color space, which means that technically they can reproduce more than 100% of the sRGB color gamut (i.e., show more colors than the sRGB covers itself).

In a bid to distinguish the XZ1 from its more expensive product families, Acer has to keep its “premium” features at an essential level. The manufacturer advertises three premium gaming features for its XZ1 LCDs (besides, of course, its maximum refresh rate of 144 Hz and a low response time). First up, the monitors support AMD’s FreeSync dynamic refresh rate technology with a 48 – 144 Hz range, which is wide enough to support AMD’s Low Frame Rate (LFC) capability. Secondly, the monitors formally support HDR10 data, yet their peak brightness level is much too low for HDR, so actual experience is something that remains to be seen. Finally, the XZ1 series support Acer’s Black Boost mode that automatically adjusts brightness of dark scenes in games to make it easier for gamers to find their opponents in the dark.

Being aimed at gamers who tend to have PCs and consoles, Acer’s XZ1 displays are outfitted with a rather rich set of inputs: one DisplayPort 1.2, one mini DisplayPort 1.2, and two HDMI 2.0 headers. Given the number of inputs, the monitors fully support PiP and PbP for two devices, which is fine for products of this class. In addition, the LCDs are equipped with two 7 W stereo speakers and a headphone jack. Finally, they feature a quad-port USB 3.0 Type-A hub.

Just like Acer’s Predator monitors, the XZ1 displays come equipped with highly adjustable stands that can tilt between -5 to 25 degrees, swivel +/- 25 degrees, and provide height adjustments of up to 120 mm.

Specifications of Acer's XZ1-Series Gaming Displays
  XZ271U XZ321QU
Panel 27" VA 31.5" VA
Native Resolution 2560 × 1440
Maximum Refresh Rate 144 Hz
Dynamic Refresh Tech AMD FreeSync with LFC
Range 48 - 144 Hz
Brightness 250 cd/m² 300 cd/m²
Contrast 3000:1
Viewing Angles 178°/178° horizontal/vertical
Response Time 1 ms MPRT
Pixel Pitch 0.2335 mm² 0.2724 mm²
Pixel Density 108 PPI 93 PPI
Curvature 1800R (?)
Color Gamut Support sRGB: 100% (?)
NTSC: 85%
Inputs 1 × DisplayPort 1.2
1 × miniDisplayPort 1.2
2 × HDMI 2.0 (one with MHL 2.1 support)
USB Hub 4-port USB 3.0 hub
Audio 2 × 7 W Speakers
3.5 mm Headphone Output
Proprietary Enhancements Acer's Black Boost
Acer's Flickerless Technology
Power Consumption Idle ~ 0.5 W
Normal 34 W 43 W
Maximum 92 W 120 W
Stand Adjustments Tilt -5 ~ +25°
Swivel +/-25°
Height 120 mm
Pivot - -
VESA Mounts 100 × 100 mm
Launch Timeframe September 2018
Additional Information Link Link

Acer’s XZ271U and XZ321QU gaming monitors were introduced in Japan last week, where they will be available  for ¥48,000 ($427) and ¥55,000 ($490) respectively. Meanwhile, both monitors can already be purchased at Amazon.com, but at higher prices ($527 and $550). Keeping in mind that prices are typically high in Japan, expect Acer's XZ1 family to become more affordable at a retail store near you in the coming months.

Related Reading:

Sources: Acer Japan, PC Watch

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  • darckhart - Monday, September 24, 2018 - link

    I notice that RGB lighting must also be a "premium" feature. That's fine by me! Give me plain old matte black plastic any day! Reply
  • willis936 - Monday, September 24, 2018 - link

    Now if only an AMD card existed that could drive the pixel clocks necessary for these displays. Reply
  • GreenReaper - Monday, September 24, 2018 - link

    Ryzen APUs should be able to do it, and decode 4K H.264/5 at 60FPS as well:
    https://en.wikichip.org/wiki/amd/ryzen_3/2200u#Gra...

    10-bit HDR decode of VP9 might be limited to 30FPS though:
    https://www.tomshardware.co.uk/amd-ryzen-5-2400g-z...

    Of course whether a game will perform at 144Hz - or 60Hz - on an APU is another matter.

    If you're using HDMI and Linux I could see you being in a world of pain if your *motherboard* manufacturer only paid for HDMI 1.4b validation - the APU drives the HDMI pins, which can usually manage 2.0 in reality, but Linux drivers check BIOS endorsement of 600Mhz signalling (6Ghz rate):
    https://bugs.freedesktop.org/show_bug.cgi?id=10282...

    If you're using DP this shouldn't be a problem, but many motherboards don't have that; and even if you do, you'd end up losing the HDMI audio input. Which would be nice for speakers/headphones!
    Reply
  • willis936 - Monday, September 24, 2018 - link

    My comment wasn't very specific but I meant being able to game at low settings on a big name title that's come out in the past five years at the native resolution and refresh rate. Reply
  • GreenReaper - Monday, September 24, 2018 - link

    Now that I think of it, though, I'm not sure either HDMI 2.0 (14.4 Gbit/s) *or* DisplayPort 1.2 (17.28 Gbit/s) have the bandwidth to support 144Hz 1440p HDR10 4:4:4 (17.6 Gbit/s?):
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HDMI#Refresh_frequen...
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/DisplayPort#Resoluti...

    So that could be a significant issue. Ultimately it might make sense to use this monitor in 8-bit mode most of the time, but maybe the look-up-tables can be calibrated to use more of its gamut. Or switch mode for watching videos/movies; I don't know many of those in 100Hz+ yet.
    Reply
  • Kaboose - Monday, September 24, 2018 - link

    This is correct, assuming 10-bit colors, 1440p 144hz 4:4:4 is 17.6Gbps, 120hz 4:4:4 would be 14.49Gbps which is still beyond the limit of HDMI 2.0 (14.40Gbps), though you could use Displayport 1.2 (17.28Gbps) to handle 1440p 120hz 10-bit 4:4:4. No current monitors that are on the market that I am aware of use HDMI 2.1(42.6Gbps), or Displayport 1.3/4(25.92Gbps), which would allow for 10-bit 4:4:4 1440p 144hz(17.6Gbps), AND 10-bit 4:4:4 2160p 60hz content (22.28Gbps). Reply
  • GreenReaper - Monday, September 24, 2018 - link

    Well, there's the Acer Predator X27 with DisplayPort 1.4, at $1999.99:
    https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N...

    Or for a few hundred more (but not necessarily better), the ROG Swift PG27UQ:
    https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07F1VGGLK

    Of course you have to be down with having a fan on your monitor. ^_^
    Reply
  • Lolimaster - Monday, September 24, 2018 - link

    JUST MAKE THEM NO-CURVE, kill the damn fad, no one sells curved tv's anymore. Reply
  • GreenReaper - Monday, September 24, 2018 - link

    Samsung does. I have one, it's good. And for a monitor, which is far closer to you and usually intended to be viewed by one person, it makes even more sense.

    I have four monitors now, and they're roughly arranged in a curve so that they're pointed at me, but it'd be better if they were *actually* curved so as to be a constant distance from my eye.
    Reply
  • Lolimaster - Tuesday, September 25, 2018 - link

    Makes no sense when you use your monitor for image viewing, browing and office work.

    It's only fancy for gaming, everything else looks distorted.
    Reply

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