The Acer X27 is a very good, versatile monitor that performs best in a bright room. It is marketed as a gaming monitor and has excellent gaming features, including NVIDIA G-Sync and a high refresh rate that delivers a remarkable gaming experience. It is a well-rounded monitor great for any use, and has an impressive wide color gamut and is incredibly bright in HDR. Unfortunately, it has poor dark room performance due to its low contrast ratio even with local dimming, and bad black uniformity.
The Acer Predator X27 has a very good design with some interesting design choices. The stand is thin but has a large footprint. The monitor can be VESA mounted on a stand or wall mount, but an included adapter must be used, likely to help with heat dissipation. There is a fan on the back to keep the monitor cool, as the backlight generates a lot of heat, but the fan is very quiet. There is very little thought given to cable management. The included blinders can help reduce glare and are easy to attach when needed.
The stand has a very unique design. The legs appear very thin, but they support the monitor well.
Mediocre ergonomic options. The height can be adjusted, and it can swivel and tilt, but the swivel range is limited compared to similar monitors like the ASUS ROG PG279Q. It cannot be rotated for a portrait orientation.
There is a fan on the back of the monitor to help with heat dissipation. It is always running but is extremely quiet.
Note: There are multiple reports that the VESA adapter included in the box is the wrong one for the X27 as it will not allow the fan to breathe. Acer support will send a replacement bracket.
The borders of the Acer X27 are of average thickness. There is no discernible gap between the borders and the screen. We measured the borders without the blinder screens.
With the stand, the Acer X27 is very thick and cannot be easily placed against a wall. Without the stand, it is still thick but won't stick out too much when wall mounted.
The Acer Predator X27 has decent picture quality. It is best suited for a bright room, as the native contrast makes blacks look gray in a dark room, and the black uniformity is bad. Bright room performance is good, and the viewing angles are decent. HDR picture quality is very good. The monitor is extremely bright in HDR and has a very good HDR color gamut and good color volume, better than most TVs even. Gradients are displayed nearly perfectly with no noticeable banding.
Disappointing native contrast on the X27, slightly worse than the Acer Predator XB271HU, but to be expected from an IPS type panel. Dark room performance isn't great as blacks appear gray. Local dimming does help to improve the contrast ratio, but it still isn't as good as a VA type monitor like the MSI Optix G27C.
Update 08/17/2018: To clarify, we measure contrast ratio after calibration, which on some monitors results in a lower contrast ratio than out of the box. The X27's out of the box contrast ratio in the Standard picture mode is 975:1, but after calibration it became 815:1 because the Red and Green components of the monitor's white point had to be decreased significantly to match our target 6500K white point, as shown in the Post Calibration box.
Also the Contrast with local dimming was erroneously measured in HDR (resulting in 1568:1) rather than in SDR (resulting in 1339:1) as per our standard method. These values are similar enough that the difference won't be noticeable to most people. The value has been changed to the SDR measurement to be consistent with other monitors.
The monitor has a Backlight Response setting with three options: 'Gaming', 'Desktop' and 'Hybrid'. 'Gaming' makes the local dimming react almost instantly when the monitor's screen changes; 'Desktop' makes the monitor react to changes with a very slow fade (~5 seconds), and prioritizes maintaining bright parts of the screen rather than making adjacent dark areas darker; this makes the local dimming less distracting for desktop use. 'Hybrid' is a blend of the 'Gaming' and 'Desktop' behaviors. We recommend setting Backlight Response to 'Gaming' to start, then if you find the local dimming distracting you can select 'Hybrid', then 'Desktop' as needed.
Local dimming is available in SDR as well as HDR. In SDR, the SDR Variable Backlight option must be enabled. In SDR the peak brightness is limited to 300 cd/m², so the impact of local dimming is less noticeable.
Good peak brightness with SDR content. There is very little fluctuation in brightness with different content. The Acer X27 is bright enough for most rooms but may have difficulty overcoming glare in a brightly lit room.
Excellent peak brightness in HDR, better even than most TVs. The brightness varies greatly depending on content. HDR movies or games are exceptionally bright and vivid.
Decent horizontal viewing angles. Colors shift significantly when viewing off center, but the overall brightness and contrast remains accurate to a decent off-center angle.
Very good vertical viewing angles. There are no issues if this monitor is VESA mounted on a stand or wall above eye level.
Excellent gray uniformity. There is very little dirty screen effect and almost no visible banding. The corners of the screen are slightly darker than the rest, which can be noticeable when browsing the web in a dark room, but this shouldn't be a problem for most people.
Bad black uniformity on the Acer X27. There is severe clouding throughout the screen and backlight bleed in a few spots along the bottom edge. With local dimming enabled, the rest of the screen is effectively dimmed but there is still significant clouding around the test cross.
Disappointing accuracy out of the box. Acer calibrates each X27 at the factory to a target color temperature of 7000 K, but it is unclear which picture mode they calibrated under. We recommend the 'Standard' Picture Mode, as it provided the closest results to our target of 6500 K. The white balance dE is very high, and pure whites appear yellowish. Gamma follows our target nearly perfectly.
Calibration was able to effectively eliminate all color inaccuracies. The Acer Predator X27 still tracks our gamma curve nearly perfectly. White and color balance is nearly perfect and most people won't be able to see any errors. The color temperature after calibration is nearly perfect for our target of 6500 K.
You can download our ICC profile calibration here. This is provided for reference only and should not be used, as the calibration values vary per individual unit even for the same model due to manufacturing tolerances.
sRGB Picture Mode: User (calibrated, SDR Colors sRGB = On)
Adobe RGB Picture Mode: User (SDR Colors sRGB = Off)
Excellent SDR color gamut, the best coverage we have tested so far. Nearly perfect coverage of the wider Adobe RGB color space, great for professional users for editing graphics or print media (see our recommendations for the best monitors for photo editing and graphic design).
sRGB Picture Mode: User (SDR Colors sRGB = On)
Adobe RGB Picture Mode: User (SDR Colors sRGB = Off)
Excellent color volume. The Acer X27 covers the entire color space well, but is slightly limited by the contrast ratio and can't produce deep, dark colors. Colors are nearly as bright as pure white in SDR.
There is no image retention on the X27, even immediately after displaying our static test image for 10 minutes.
Excellent gradient handling on the Acer Predator X27. Gradients are displayed nearly perfectly without banding.
There is no color bleed on the Acer Predator X27.
Decent reflection handling, but it is best to avoid direct light with the X27. The included blinders can help to reduce glare from side sources.
The motion handling of the Acer Predator X27 is excellent. There is very little motion blur thanks to the fast response time, but there is some overshoot on all transitions. The monitor is flicker-free, which is great but lacks an optional Black Frame Insertion feature to reduce persistence blur.
Excellent motion handling on the Predator X27. Motion looks smooth and crisp, with no visible motion blur or duplications. The best Over Drive setting is 'Normal', and even in this mode there is some overshoot on the transitions. This shouldn't bother most people but if you see artifacts you can set it to 'Off' instead.
Unlike most G-Sync monitors this monitor does not have ULMB, which is NVIDIA's BFI implementation. Acer's early marketing materials for this monitor listed ULMB support, but the monitor's OSD has no option for it and no other way to enable it was found. Other reviewers have confirmed the absence of ULMB.
The Acer X27 uses DC dimming and there is no flicker. Since each image is displayed for the full frame, motion is smoother but there is more persistence blur.
Over DisplayPort, 144 Hz is not supported for RGB @ 8 bit because 4k @ 144 Hz @ RGB @ 8 bit is beyond the bandwidth of DisplayPort 1.4 ; to send 144 Hz the bandwidth must be reduced, such as by sending RGB @ 6 bit or 4:2:2 @ 8 bit.
Over DisplayPort, the only supported resolutions are 3840x2160, 1024x768, 800x600 and 640x480, and only 3840x2160 can run at refresh rates beyond 60 Hz. When a graphics card sends a different resolution to the monitor, say 1080p, the graphics card upscales 1080p to 4k and sends 4k. This unfortunately means that if your graphics card doesn't support the high bandwidth of DisplayPort 1.4 or 1.3, you cannot run this monitor at 120 Hz @ RGB (without resorting to more extreme methods), because when you attempt to send 1080p @ 120 Hz @ RGB the graphics card will instead try to send 4k @ 120 Hz @ RGB, which is beyond the bandwidth of DisplayPort 1.2 and under. We even made an NVIDIA Control Panel custom resolution at 1080p @ 60 Hz, and the monitor would not display it at all. Also when we set our GTX 960 to 4k @ 4:2:2, the maximum resolution was 98 Hz, though 4k @ 120 Hz @ 4:2:2 should be within the bandwidth of DisplayPort 1.2 .
The Acer Predator X27 has great low input lag, but it is higher than most other gaming monitors like the XB271HU. It has a large 27" screen with a 4k resolution that is perfect for almost any use.
Lowest input lag possible at the center of the screen, when the monitor is displaying an alternative resolution at its native refresh rate. The non-native resolution tested depends on the native resolution of the monitor, following this pattern unless otherwise specified in the Input Lag text:
|Native Resolution||Non-Native Resolution Tested|
The monitor accepts a few non-native resolutions (only 1024x768, 800x600 and 640x480), but none can run at 120 Hz; this isn't usually a problem though because most video cards upscale to the monitor's native resolution without you even knowing.
At the native resolution and refresh rate input lag is low but may be disappointing to some gamers. With G-Sync enabled, it is lower but still higher than many other comparable monitors, like the ASUS ROG Swift PG279Q.
The HDR input lag test is not working correctly with the X27. We expect it to be ~13ms, in line with the Native Resolution and Variable Refresh Rate input lag. We will update the review with these results shortly.
The Acer X27 has a large 27" screen and a native 4k resolution. Even if you are sitting extremely close to the monitor you will still be able to see very fine details without seeing the individual pixels.
The Acer Predator X27 has a nice set of additional features that should please most people. There are many display options that can adjust the picture, including a night-time blue filter mode. The on-screen display is well laid out and easy to navigate, as are the controls.
One of the USB ports on the side of the monitor supports quick charging. There is a Blue Light feature that adds a yellow tint to the screen for nighttime viewing. There is also a Dark Boost feature that adjusts the black levels to make dark details easier to see.
When in full screen G-Sync mode, there is an option to display the current refresh rate on the screen.
There is an ambient light feature that shines light from the backlight onto the surface beneath the monitor. It can also change colors dynamically depending on the average color of the screen.
The ambient light feature doesn't shine light from the backlight, it uses separate LEDs. There's LEDs that shine behind the monitor, and others that shine under the monitor. Also the fact that you can choose among a few colors (red, green, blue, orange etc.) is a more important feature than the adaptive color.
We've tested the 27" Acer Predator X27, version bmiphzx.
If someone comes across a different type of panel or if their Predator X27 doesn't correspond to our review, let us know and we will update the review. Note that some tests such as the gray uniformity may vary between individual units.
|Model||Size||Panel Type||Curved||Resolution||Native Refresh|
The X27 we reviewed was manufactured in May 2018.
The Acer Predator is a very good HDR gaming monitor, and one of the best 4k monitors for HDR we've tested, but it comes at a very premium price. See our recommendations for the best gaming monitors and the best PC gaming monitors.
The Acer Predator X27 and ASUS ROG PG279Q offer very similar performance overall. The Acer X27 has a higher native resolution, at 4k, that allows you to see more details or multitask easier. The X27 supports HDR and has a wider color gamut. The ROG Swift PG279Q has better motion handling, including an optional black frame insertion feature, and has less input lag for gaming.
The Acer Predator X27 is a bit better than the Samsung CHG70, unless dark room performance is an important factor. The Predator X27 is much brighter than the CHG70 and has wider viewing angles. The X27 offers a better HDR experience, highlights stand out more in some scenes, and colors are more saturated and vibrant. The VA panel in the CHG70 delivers deeper blacks, and better black uniformity, but worse viewing angles. The CHG70 also has better low input lag.
The Acer Predator X27 is better than the Acer Predator XB271HU. The X27 has a higher native resolution, so you can see more details, and it supports HDR. It displays a wider color gamut, great for professional users in print and marketing. The XB271HU has lower native input lag, great for gamers, and has an optional black frame insertion feature that can clear up motion.
The Acer Predator X27 is slightly better than the Dell U2718Q. The X27 is brighter and offers a much better HDR experience, as it is brighter and can produce brighter highlights, as well as the added full array local dimming feature. The X27 has a much wider color gamut, suitable for professional use for print and marketing. The Dell U2718Q has more ergonomic options and is easier to adjust to an optimal viewing position.