The ASUS Republic of Gamers (ROG) line includes everything you want for building a high-end gaming PC: GPUs, Motherboards, Keyboards and Mice, Sound Cards, Headsets, and now Monitors. The ROG Swift PG278Q is a 27” WQHD display that has both a 144Hz maximum refresh rate and NVIDIA G-SYNC. Combining both of these technologies provides the potential of a silky-smooth image that doesn’t get choppy if the frame rate happens to drop in demanding sequences.

My prior demonstrations of G-SYNC involved displays that fell below a 60Hz refresh rate. Even when falling down to 40-45fps, the G-SYNC displays manage to remain smooth when compared to a standard 60Hz display. With a 144Hz display, G-SYNC enables you to run at these very fast refresh rates without noticeable stuttering or tearing if your refresh rate falls below that. You might have the GPU power to run at 144Hz most of the time, but if you suffer slowdown during certain sequences the ASUS ROG will still appear as smooth as it did before.

Ergonomically the ASUS ROG offers a very well designed experience. The display has good height adjustment, tilt, swivel, and pivot. Since it is a TN panel and prone to color shifts when you move off-axis, being able to set it up to be perfectly even with your eyesight is a very good thing. There are a pair of USB 3.0 ports on the bottom of the rear panel, good for a keyboard or mouse, but none on the side to provide easy access for flash drives and other accessories.

The worst ergonomic feature of the ASUS ROG is that it utilizes an external power supply brick. The external brick is compact compared to others that have passed through, but it still means yet another cable and device to have to deal with on a desktop.

The On-Screen Display for the ASUS ROG is good though not excellent. It offers quick access to a few items, like refresh rate, but to do so it uses icons on the screen. Since the keys are on the back of the monitor, unless your face is level with the lower bezel (an unlikely occurrence) it is hard to determine which button is the correct one. If the buttons were on the front this would work well, but I just found myself always hitting the wrong option. Simply going to the main menu and selecting the item there is faster.

The main menu is controlled with a 4-way joystick on the back of the display. This is nice and easy to use, and lets you move around the menus quickly. The layout is a nice three-column variety that lets you see which submenu you are in without having to navigate all the way back out, which is nice. Menu systems have come a long way since I started reviewing monitors and the ASUS would beat anything I had to look at four years ago.

Video Inputs 1x DisplayPort 1.2
Panel Type TN
Pixel Pitch 0.233mm
Colors 16.7 Million
Brightness 350 cd/m2
Contrast Ratio 1000:1
Response Time 1ms GtG
Viewable Size 27"
Resolution 2560x1440
Viewing Angle (H/V) 170 / 160
Backlight LED
Power Consumption (operation) <90W
Power Consumption (standby) <0.5W
Screen Treatment Anti-Glare
Height-Adjustable Yes
Tilt Yes, -5 to 20 degrees
Pivot Yes
Swivel Yes
VESA Wall Mounting Yes, 100mm
Dimensions w/ Base (WxHxD) 24.4" x 14.3" x 9.4"
Weight 15.4 lbs.
Additional Features 2x USB 3.0, G-SYNC
Limited Warranty 3 Years
Accessories DisplayPort Cable, USB 3.0 Cable
Price $790
G-SYNC Gaming with QHD at 144Hz
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  • shonferg - Monday, February 16, 2015 - link

    I found the article here on AndandTech that gave me the impression that G-sync can do self-refresh:

    "You can only do so much with VBLANK manipulation though. In present implementations the longest NVIDIA can hold a single frame is 33.3ms (30Hz). If the next frame isn’t ready by then, the G-Sync module will tell the display to redraw the last frame."

    "Game/hardware/settings combinations that result in frame rates below 30 fps will exhibit stuttering since the G-Sync display will be forced to repeat frames"

    Of course, that article was about first gen, pre-release hardware, and I don't know if things have changed since that initial article.

    But if that's still the way it works, it sounds like it will only kick in if the frame rate is below 30 fps, and even then it's kind of dumb in that it waits the full 33 ms before re-showing the previous frame. So if the next frame is ready moments later, it will have to wait for the next refresh, causing a stutter.

    Unfortunately, it sounds like it wasn't doing anything smart like noticing frame rate is falling lower than a certain threshold and then doubling the frame rate to prevent the possibility of flicker and stutter. Seems like it needs the ability for the GPU to send a "redraw the last frame now" command for situations like that so that frame refresh can be doubled without doubling bandwidth requirements.
  • GameLifter - Friday, February 13, 2015 - link

    I got this monitor at launch and I'm still loving it. G-Sync is incredible, ULMB is incredible, the higher refresh rate makes a noticeable difference, and the color quality is very good for a TN panel. Heck, better than any TN panel I've seen.

    However, I did notice a dead pixel towards the top of the screen recently. It's not bad but I hope more don't start to show up. Back light uniformity is sub par but it's not very noticeable to me unless I have my lights off and the screen is black or a darker color.

    Overall I'm very pleased with this monitor and hopefully higher refresh rate panels and VRR technology become the norm.
  • pandemonium - Saturday, February 14, 2015 - link

    May as well remove the Input Lag from the reviews until you can produce some results for that. Every time I see that I get disappointed because that's a key metric for me.
  • cheinonen - Saturday, February 14, 2015 - link

    It's only missing on monitors that are DisplayPort only, which has only been the G-Sync models to this point. If we left the section out without the explanation, it would cause far more comments.
  • wyewye - Saturday, February 14, 2015 - link

    Why are you reviewing an year old stuff?
    What do you have to add compared to the other gazillion reviews of ROG Swift out there?

    Apparently nothing.
    Nothing about latency or input lag on a gaming monitor review.

    Really pathetic.
    Whats going on with you AnandTech? Severe budget cuts?
  • cheinonen - Saturday, February 14, 2015 - link

    Input lag was addressed in the piece. Since the ROG Swift runs at a resolution beyond a CRT, and has no HDMI input for a lag tester, there is no way to generate a reliable number for lag. I've seen numbers for it that indicate under 5ms when using SMTT, but SMTT stopped issuing licenses and ours expired, so I cannot use it to test anymore. If you have a way to measure the input lag that is reliable and accurate and works with DisplayPort, we'd love to know.
  • Slowking - Saturday, February 14, 2015 - link

    "Why are you reviewing an year old stuff?"

    I clicked on the article half hoping it contained more information on a forthcoming cheaper version of the Swift.
  • Achaios - Saturday, February 14, 2015 - link

    Honestly, I cannot see a difference between 60 Hz and 144 Hz, which leads me to assume that: 1. Either my eyes are defective or 2. Those who claim to see a difference between 60Hz and 144 Hz are lying.
  • snuuggles - Saturday, February 14, 2015 - link

    It's not your eyes, it's your brain. I guess it could be like being colorblind or something. In a way, it's an advantage to you because you'll never need to bother spending money on something like this :)
  • Murloc - Saturday, February 14, 2015 - link

    it's like being an audio peasant, you spare lots of money if you're content with desktop speakers.
    I've never tried a 144Hz monitor so the jury is still out for me.

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