The ASUS TUF Gaming VG27AQL1A is an impressive gaming monitor that's more well-rounded than its predecessor, the ASUS TUF VG27AQ. It has native Adaptive Sync and FreeSync support, and it's certified as G-SYNC compatible. Its native 144Hz refresh rate can be overclocked to 170Hz, and it has a great response time at its max refresh rate. The input lag is incredibly low, and it stays low even when gaming at 60Hz. HDR content doesn't look the best because it's not the brightest, but it displays a wide range of colors. Its IPS panel provides wide viewing angles, but it comes at the cost of a low contrast ratio that makes blacks appear closer to gray, and its local dimming feature is terrible. It's well-built and the stand offers fantastic ergonomics, so you shouldn't have any issues placing it in an ideal viewing position.
The ASUS VG27AQL1A is good for most uses. It has impressive gaming performance because it has a quick response time, VRR support, and an incredibly low input lag. The high resolution and large screen make it easier to multitask, and it has great reflection handling if you work in a well-lit environment. It's good for watching the latest videos with some friends as it has wide viewing angles. Sadly, it's only alright for HDR because it has a low contrast ratio and the local dimming feature is terrible.
The ASUS VG27AQL1A is great for office use. The large, 27 inch screen provides enough space to multitask, and the 1440p resolution delivers clear text. If you work in a well-lit environment, it has good reflection handling and peak brightness. It has wide viewing angles and great ergonomics, making it easier to share your screen with others.
The ASUS TUF Gaming VG27AQL1A is impressive for gaming. It has a high refresh rate, FreeSync support, G-SYNC compatibility, and incredibly low input lag. There's a Black Frame Insertion feature that can be used at the same time as VRR. Sadly, its low contrast and disappointing black uniformity mean it's not the best choice for dark-room gaming. It has fantastic ergonomics that make it easier to place in an ideal position.
The ASUS VG27AQL1A is decent for media consumption. Its 27 inch screen and 1440p resolution help deliver images with a ton of detail. The wide viewing angles and great ergonomics make it a good choice for watching the latest videos online with your friends. Unfortunately, it doesn't perform well in dark rooms because it has a low contrast ratio and disappointing black uniformity.
The ASUS TUF Gaming VG27AQL1A is great for content creators. The large screen offers enough space so that you can open multiple windows side-by-side. The fantastic ergonomics make it easier to find an ideal viewing position, and the wide viewing angles mean you can easily share your screen with a client. Also, it has great coverage of the Adobe RGB color space; however, there are some signs of color bleed that isn't ideal for photo editors.
The ASUS TUF VG27AQL1A is alright for HDR. It has a low contrast ratio that makes blacks look gray, and even if it has a local dimming feature, it performs terribly and causes blooming around bright objects. It displays a wide range of colors in HDR and has decent HDR peak brightness, but it's not enough to deliver an impactful HDR experience.
We tested the 27 inch ASUS TUF Gaming VG27AQL1A, and the results are only valid for this model. There's a 32 inch variant, the VG32VQL1A, which is slightly different because it's FreeSync Premium certified, so the review isn't valid for it. There are other similar monitors in the TUF Gaming lineup, some of which are listed below.
|Model||Size||Resolution||Panel||Max Refresh Rate||Variable Refresh Rate||Notes|
|VG27AQL1A||27"||1440p||IPS||170Hz||Adaptive Sync||DisplayHDR 400|
If someone comes across a different type of panel or if their ASUS VG27AQL1A 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.
The VG27AQL1A we reviewed was manufactured in July 2020, and you can see the label here.
The ASUS VG27AQL1A is well-rounded and comes with an ergonomic stand and wide viewing angles, making it a good choice for co-op gaming. However, it's a bit of a step down from its predecessor, the ASUS TUF VG27AQ in terms of pure gaming performance because its backlight strobing feature has a much more narrow frequency range.
The ASUS TUF Gaming VG27AQL1A and the ASUS TUF VG27AQ perform very similarly. The VG27AQL1A has a slightly higher max refresh rate, it gets much brighter in HDR, displays a wide color gamut, and has a quicker response time at 60Hz. However, the VG27AQ has better ergonomics, better out-of-the-box accuracy, and its BFI feature works over a wider frequency range.
The LG 27GP850-B is slightly better than the ASUS TUF Gaming VG27AQL1A for gaming, but the ASUS is better for office use. The LG has a much faster response time, resulting in clearer motion with less blur behind fast-moving objects. On the other hand, the ASUS has much better ergonomics, so it might be slightly easier to place it in an ideal viewing position.
The ASUS TUF Gaming VG27AQL1A and the Gigabyte M27Q (rev. 1.0) are very similar 1440p gaming monitors with a 170Hz refresh rate. Gaming-wise, the Gigabyte performs better because it has a faster response time, at max refresh rate and 60Hz. It also has wider viewing angles, gets brighter to combat glare, and offers more features like USB-C input, a Picture-in-Picture mode, and an integrated KVM.
Overall, the MSI Optix MAG274QRF-QD performs better than the ASUS TUF Gaming VG27AQL1A. The MSI has a much faster response time to deliver a clearer image in fast-moving scenes. It has a much wider color gamut for HDR due to its Quantum Dot layer; however, it doesn't get as bright as the ASUS to bring out highlights in HDR content. The MSI has more USB ports, including a USB-C that supports DisplayPort and 15W charging.
The Gigabyte G27Q and the ASUS TUF Gaming VG27AQL1A are both great gaming monitors. The ASUS has a higher refresh rate, making it feel a bit more responsive, but its response time at max refresh rate isn't as good as the Gigabyte. That said, the ASUS performs much better at 60Hz. Feature-wise, the ASUS has better ergonomics, but the Gigabyte gets brighter to combat glare.
The ASUS TUF Gaming VG27AQL1A and the Samsung Odyssey G5 S27AG50 are similar gaming monitors. They each have an IPS panel with a 1440p resolution. The Samsung has a higher native refresh rate of 165Hz compared to 144Hz on the ASUS, but you can overclock the ASUS to 170Hz anyways. The Samsung has much better motion handling because it has a quicker response time at its max refresh rate and 60Hz, and it gets brighter, so it does a better job at fighting glare. The ASUS has built-in speakers and a local dimming feature, both of which the Samsung doesn't have, but the local dimming doesn't add much because it performs terribly.
The ASUS TUF Gaming VG27AQL1A is better than the ASUS TUF Gaming VG27WQ1B, but they have different panel types. The VG27AQL1A has an IPS panel with wider viewing angles. It also has much better ergonomics, a quicker response time, and gets brighter in HDR. However, the VG27WQ1B has a VA panel with a better contrast, it displays clearer text, and it has much better out-of-the-box accuracy.
The ASUS TUF Gaming VG27AQL1A is much better than the AOC CQ27G2. The ASUS has an IPS panel that provides wide viewing angles, it has better ergonomics, a quicker response time, a higher max refresh rate, and supports HDR. However, the AOC has a VA panel with a much better contrast ratio and it has a slightly lower input lag.
The ASUS ROG Strix XG27AQ and the ASUS TUF Gaming VG27AQL1A are both great monitors, but the XG27AQ is a bit better in terms of gaming performance. It has faster response times than the VG27AQL1A at both 60Hz and the max refresh rate, so fast-moving action will look significantly smoother. While the XG27AQ doesn't get as bright, it should still be fine in moderate lighting conditions, plus it has good reflection handling. It also has much better out-of-the-box color accuracy than the VG27AQL1A, so you may not have to calibrate it to get the best possible image. The biggest downside is that its HDR performance isn't as good as the VG27AQL1A if gaming in HDR is important to you.
The Samsung Odyssey G7 C32G75T is better than the ASUS TUF Gaming VG27AQL1A in gaming performance. The Samsung has a much better response time that results in a clearer image in fast-moving scenes. It has a higher refresh rate of 240Hz compared to the ASUS' 170Hz, but the difference might not be noticeable to casual gamers. The ASUS has better viewing angles because it uses an IPS panel, but it doesn't perform as well as the Samsung in dark rooms because it has a low contrast ratio. The Samsung is available in a 27 inch and 32 inch size, while the ASUS is only available in a 27 inch.
The ASUS TUF Gaming VG249Q1A and the ASUS TUF Gaming VG27AQL1A are great gaming monitors but with different specs. The VG249Q1A has a 24" screen with a 1080p resolution, while the VG279AQL1A has a 27" screen with a 1440p resolution. Gaming-wise, the VG249Q1A delivers a better experience because it has much better response times. On the other hand, the VG279AQL1A has significantly better ergonomics, whereas the VG249Q1A only allows for tilt adjustment. The VG279AQL1A has wider viewing angles, gets brighter, and supports HDR.
The Dell S2721DGF and the ASUS TUF Gaming VG27AQL1A are two monitors that perform very similarly overall. The Dell has better ergonomics, gets brighter in SDR, has better reflection handling, and the response time is much quicker. However, the ASUS has a BFI feature, its max refresh rate is 170Hz, and it gets brighter and displays a wider color gamut in HDR.
The ASUS ROG Strix XG279Q is slightly better than the ASUS TUF Gaming VG27AQL1A, but both have an IPS panel with Adaptive Sync support and a 170Hz max refresh rate. The ROG Strix gets brighter in SDR, has better reflection handling, a much quicker response time, and much better out-of-the-box color accuracy. However, the TUF Gaming displays a wider color gamut in SDR and HDR, has lower input lag, and has marginally better ergonomics.
The ASUS TUF Gaming VG27AQL1A and the ASUS ROG Strix XG16AHPE are very different monitors, each with strengths and weaknesses. The XG16AHPE is a portable monitor with a lower native resolution and great gaming performance. The VG27AQL1A is a traditional desktop monitor with a higher native resolution and a faster refresh rate.
The ASUS TUF Gaming VG27AQL1A is a bit better than the Gigabyte AORUS AD27QD. The ASUS's refresh rate can be overclocked to 170Hz, it has a quicker response time, and built-in speakers. However, the Gigabyte has much better out-of-the-box color accuracy, and it gets brighter in SDR.
The ASUS TUF Gaming VG27AQL1A is better than the Samsung CHG70, but they have different panel types. The ASUS has an IPS panel that provides wide viewing angles. It also has a higher refresh rate, a much quicker response time at 60Hz, and it displays a wider color gamut. However, the Samsung has a VA panel that displays deep blacks. It has much better out-of-the-box color accuracy, it gets brighter, and has better reflection handling.
The ASUS ZenScreen MB14AC and the ASUS TUF Gaming VG27AQL1A are intended for different uses. The MB14AC is a 14" portable monitor with a 1080p resolution and 60Hz refresh rate, while the VG27AQL1A is a 27" desktop gaming monitor with a 1440p resolution and 170Hz refresh rate. Unless you need the MB14AC's portability, the VG27AQL1A is better for most uses.
The ASUS VG27AQL1A is well-built, with a sleek and modern design. It looks different than its predecessor, the ASUS TUF VG27AQ, as it has a new stand and thin bezels on three sides. Even though it has a gamer-oriented style, it should fit well into any office setup.
The ASUS VG27AQL1A has a good build quality. The entire monitor is made of solid plastic and there aren't any obvious issues. The stand supports the monitor well and there's no wobble.
The ergonomics are fantastic, so you won't have any trouble placing it in an ideal viewing position. However, it's a bit of a downgrade from the ASUS TUF VG27AQ because the swivel range isn't as wide.
The back of the monitor has some etched designs, giving it a gamer-friendly aesthetic. Cable management is serviced through the stand. Sadly, there's no quick-release button to easily take off the stand.
The V-shaped stand is different than the square-based stand found on previous ASUS monitors. It has a wide footprint, but you can easily place things in front, like a keyboard or mouse. It supports the monitor well and there's no wobble.
The ASUS VG27AQL1A has a low contrast ratio, which is expected from an IPS panel, and the local dimming only slightly improves it. Blacks appear closer to gray when viewed in dark rooms. If you prefer something similar with a VA panel and better contrast, then check out the ASUS TUF Gaming VG27WQ1B.
This monitor has a terrible edge-lit local dimming feature. There are four dimming zones that only slightly improve contrast. Zone transitions are slow and visible, and the local dimming doesn't improve the picture quality in HDR. The setting to control it is called Dynamic Dimming and it can't be used with the Black Frame Insertion feature. It automatically turns on in HDR.
The SDR peak brightness is good. It gets bright enough to combat glare, and it's very similar to the ASUS TUF VG27AQ, except small areas aren't as bright. Sadly, its minimum brightness is bright, which isn't ideal if you like to work in a dark room and you're sensitive to bright lights.
These measurements are from after calibration in the 'Racing' Picture Mode. If you want a slightly brighter image, we reached 339 cd/m² before calibration.
The ASUS VG27AQL1A has decent peak brightness in HDR. It's a nice improvement over the ASUS VG27AQ, and it meets its DisplayHDR 400 standards. It makes some highlights stand out the way the content creator intended. The EOTF doesn't follow the target PQ curve well, as most scenes are too brightened until there's a sharp roll-off at its peak brightness, resulting in a loss of fine details in bright scenes. The results are with the 'HDR Gaming' Picture Mode.
Like most IPS panels, the ASUS TUF Gaming VG27AQL1A has a great horizontal viewing angle. The image remains accurate when viewing from the side.
The vertical viewing angle is okay. The image remains fairly accurate if you mount it above eye level, but you may notice a loss in color or brightness.
The ASUS VG27AQL1A has excellent gray uniformity. There's almost no dirty screen effect in the center and even though the edges are slightly darker, it's not too distracting.
The ASUS VG27AQL1A has disappointing black uniformity. There's significant clouding throughout, and backlight bleed near the top and bottom right corners. The uniformity is worse with local dimming enabled because there's more blooming around the center cross as large zones are turned on.
The ASUS VG27AQL1A has mediocre out-of-the-box accuracy. It has an sRGB mode but it doesn't clamp colors to the sRGB color space, so they're over-saturated, which isn't ideal for photo editing. Most colors are slightly inaccurate, but the white balance and color temperature are both good. The gamma follows the target sRGB curve well, but some dark scenes are too dark. The sRGB mode locks most picture settings, and even changing the Picture Mode to 'Racing' doesn't improve the accuracy.
The accuracy is outstanding after calibration. All white balance and color inaccuracies are corrected, and the colors aren't over-saturated anymore. The color temperature is extremely close to the 6500K target, and gamma is similar to before calibration, but some dark scenes are a bit too bright now.
The ASUS VG27AQL1A has an outstanding color gamut. It has perfect coverage of the sRGB color space used in most web content, and good coverage of the Adobe RGB color space used in photo editing.
The ASUS VG27AQL1A has remarkable color volume. It displays a wide range of colors at different luminance levels, but it has trouble displaying dark, saturated colors well due to the low contrast ratio.
The ASUS TUF Gaming VG27AQL1A displays an excellent, wide color gamut for HDR content. It has excellent coverage of the commonly-used DCI-P3 color space, but its coverage of the wider Rec. 2020 is a bit limited.
The ASUS VG27AQL1A has an excellent HDR color volume. It displays a wide range of colors due to its wide color gamut; however, it can't display dark colors well because it has a low contrast ratio.
The ASUS TUF VG27AQL1A has good reflection handling. It shouldn't be a problem in a moderately-lit environment, but if you place it opposite a window with direct sunlight, the reflections may become too distracting.
The ASUS VG27AQL1A has decent text clarity. It can be improved by enabling ClearType (top photo). This helps the appearance of the diagonal and curved lines as seen on the letters R, N, G, and S.
The ASUS TUF VG27AQL1A has incredible gradient handling. You shouldn't notice any banding, and it's an improvement over the ASUS TUF VG27AQ because it accepts a 10-bit signal, as opposed to an 8-bit signal on the older model.
The ASUS VG27AQL1A has a high native refresh rate that you can overclock to 170Hz over a DisplayPort connection. Due to the bandwidth limitations of DisplayPort 1.2 and HDMI 2.0, the refresh rate is lower with 10-bit signals.
The ASUS TUF VG27AQL1A is a native FreeSync monitor, and G-SYNC compatibility works over DisplayPort connections.
|Overdrive Setting||Response Time Chart||Response Time Tables||Motion Blur Photo|
The ASUS VG27AQL1A has a great response time at its max refresh rate of 170Hz. The recommended overdrive setting is '80' because it has a quicker response time than '60' without introducing as much overshoot as on '100'. However, there's still some overshoot and ghosting, so if that bothers you, set it to '60' instead.
|Overdrive Setting||Response Time Chart||Response Time Tables||Motion Blur Photo|
The ASUS TUF Gaming VG27QL1A has a very good response time at 120Hz, like when playing games on the Xbox Series X and PS5. Unlike the max refresh rate, the best setting is '40' because higher settings have more overshoot, so you'll have to change the setting if the frame rate of your game drops.
|Overdrive Setting||Response Time Chart||Response Time Tables||Motion Blur Photo|
The response time at 60Hz is mediocre, as motion looks blurry and there's black smearing. The response time in dark transitions is slow, so it's not ideal for gaming with dark scenes. Unlike at its max refresh rate, the recommended overdrive setting is '20', so you'll have to change the setting if the frame rate of your game drops. It has a quicker response time than the '0' setting, and there's a lot less overshoot than the higher settings.
|Refresh Rate||VRR Setting||Motion Blur Photo|
This monitor has a backlight strobing feature, commonly known as black frame insertion (BFI). Unlike most monitors, the BFI features works with VRR enabled, but it performs differently with VRR enabled. Without VRR, it only works between 120Hz to 170Hz, and with VRR enabled, it works from 80Hz to 170Hz, but it turns off if it goes below 80Hz and doesn't turn back on until the frame rate reaches 120Hz again. It's better to disable it if the frame rate of your game regularly drops below 80 fps, or if it fluctuates around 80 fps, as the BFI feature will turn off, and you won't get any of its benefits so motion will look the same whether it's on or off. Also, if you leave the BFI feature enabled and it keeps going on and off, the brightness of the screen will constantly fluctuate, which is distracting
The ASUS TUF VG27AQL1A has a flicker-free backlight, which helps reduce eye strain.
The ASUS VG27AQL1A has an extremely low input lag for a responsive feel. Unlike the ASUS VG279QM, the input lag at 60Hz is also really low.
The ASUS VG27AQL1A has a great size, allowing you to open multiple windows side-by-side. The high resolution helps deliver clear and crisp images.
The ASUS VG27AQL1A supports most signals from the PS5. Even though it's a 1440p monitor it still accepts 4k signals and downscales them, resulting in a sharper image than with a 1440p resolution.
The monitor supports most signals from the Xbox Series X. Even though it's a 1440p monitor it still accepts 4k signals and downscales them, resulting in a sharper image than with a 1440p resolution.
The ASUS TUF Gaming VG27AQL1A has a limited selection of USB ports, as it only has 3 USB ports, two of which support 3.0 speeds, and the other is a service port. This means that you can connect your mouse and keyboard directly to the monitor, as long as you have the USB-B upstream cable connected to your PC.
The ASUS VG27AQL1A works well with recent Mac computers, but there are issues with VRR. There's a lot of flickering, especially in low-frame-rate games, and changing the refresh rate to match the VRR refresh rate causes the screen to go black. It's best to not use the VRR feature with a Mac, as it works well without it. HDR works well and there aren't problems waking up from sleep, except some windows get sent back to the Mac display.
The ASUS TUF Gaming VG27AQL1A has a few additional features, which are listed below: