Gigabyte M27Q Monitor Review

Tested using Methodology v1.1
Reviewed Jan 20, 2021 at 09:51 am
Gigabyte M27Q Picture
8.1
Mixed Usage
8.0
Office
8.5
Gaming
7.9
Multimedia
8.0
Media Creation
7.3
HDR Gaming
Size 27"
Resolution 2560x1440
Max Refresh Rate
170 Hz
Pixel Type
IPS
Variable Refresh Rate
FreeSync

The Gigabyte M27Q is an excellent 1440p gaming monitor suitable for a wide variety of uses. It has a large 27 inch screen that provides an immersive gaming experience and plenty of screen real estate for work. It has an incredibly low input lag, exceptional response time, and a high refresh rate to deliver smooth and responsive gameplay. Its IPS panel has wide viewing angles that make it easier to share content or play co-op games; however, it comes at the cost of a lower contrast ratio, which makes blacks appear gray in dark environments. Unfortunately, it lacks swivel adjustment and can't rotate to portrait mode, and even though it supports HDR, it doesn't get quite bright enough to deliver a true HDR experience. On the upside, it has tons of additional features, including a Picture-in-Picture/Picture-by-Picture mode, a USB-C port that supports DisplayPort Alt Mode, and a KVM feature that lets you control two devices with your mouse and keyboard.

Our Verdict

8.1 Mixed Usage

The Gigabyte M27Q is a great monitor for most uses. Its low input lag, exceptional response time, and high refresh rate make it excellent for gaming. It has a big, high-resolution screen that provides incredible immersion, as well as plenty of screen space for work. It has wide viewing angles so that images remain accurate when viewing off-center, but it lacks swivel adjustment, which might make it harder to share your screen depending on your setup. It has near-full coverage of the Adobe RGB color space, making it a great choice for photo editors. Unfortunately, it has a low contrast ratio and doesn't get bright enough to deliver a true HDR experience.

Pros
  • Large screen and high resolution.
  • Wide viewing angles.
  • Good visibility in bright rooms.
  • Exceptional SDR color gamut.
Cons
  • Blacks look gray in dark environments.
  • Poor ergonomics.
8.0 Office

The Gigabyte M27Q is great for office use. It delivers clear text thanks to its high resolution, and its 27 inch screen provides plenty of space for multitasking. It has wide viewing angles so that images remain accurate when viewed from the side; however, it lacks swivel adjustment, which might be an issue if you need to turn the screen around to show your work to others. It has a USB-C port that supports DisplayPort Alt Mode, allowing you to display a signal from a compatible device and charge it simultaneously with a single cable, but it can only deliver up to 10W of power, which is rather disappointing.

Pros
  • Large screen and high resolution.
  • Wide viewing angles.
  • Good visibility in bright rooms.
  • Exceptional SDR color gamut.
Cons
  • Blacks look gray in dark environments.
  • Poor ergonomics.
8.5 Gaming

The Gigabyte M27Q is excellent for gaming. It has exceptional response time, low input lag, and a high refresh rate to deliver incredibly smooth and responsive gameplay. Its large, high-resolution screen feels immersive, and it has wide viewing angles so that you can share content easily. Unfortunately, it has poor ergonomics, which makes it harder to place the screen the way you want. Also, it isn't well-suited for dark rooms because it has a low contrast ratio that makes blacks appear gray.

Pros
  • Exceptional response time.
  • High refresh rate.
  • VRR support.
  • Large screen and high resolution.
Cons
  • Blacks look gray in dark environments.
  • Poor ergonomics.
7.9 Multimedia

The Gigabyte M27Q is good for media consumption. It has a large, high-resolution screen that provides an immersive viewing experience, and you can share content easily thanks to its wide viewing angles. It's well-suited for bright rooms because it fights glare easily; however, it isn't ideal for dark rooms due to its low contrast ratio. Sadly, the ergonomics are poor, so it might be hard to place the screen at your optimal viewing position.

Pros
  • Large screen and high resolution.
  • Wide viewing angles.
  • Good visibility in bright rooms.
Cons
  • Blacks look gray in dark environments.
  • Poor ergonomics.
8.0 Media Creation

The Gigabyte M27Q is great for content creation. It has a big screen with a high resolution so that you can work comfortably with multiple windows opened side-by-side. It has an exceptional SDR color gamut with full sRGB and near-full Adobe RGB coverage, and accuracy is outstanding out of the box, so you might not need to calibrate it. Its wide viewing angles make it easier to share your work with coworkers and clients, and it provides good visibility in bright settings. Unfortunately, it doesn't allow for swivel adjustment and can't rotate to portrait mode.

Pros
  • Large screen and high resolution.
  • Wide viewing angles.
  • Good visibility in bright rooms.
  • Exceptional SDR color gamut.
Cons
  • Blacks look gray in dark environments.
  • Poor ergonomics.
7.3 HDR Gaming

The Gigabyte M27Q is decent for gaming in HDR, although mostly due to its excellent gaming performance. It has a great color gamut with excellent DCI P3 coverage, but it only gets bright enough to make some highlights pop in HDR games. Also, it has a low contrast ratio that makes blacks appear gray in the dark and lacks a local dimming feature. Black uniformity is sub-par as there's a lot of backlight bleed; however, this varies between units, so yours may be different.

Pros
  • Exceptional response time.
  • High refresh rate.
  • VRR support.
  • Large screen and high resolution.
Cons
  • Blacks look gray in dark environments.
  • Poor ergonomics.
  • No local dimming.
  • Doesn't get bright enough for a true HDR experience.
  • 8.1 Mixed Usage
  • 8.0 Office
  • 8.5 Gaming
  • 7.9 Multimedia
  • 8.0 Media Creation
  • 7.3 HDR Gaming
  1. Updated Feb 12, 2021: We tested text clarity with a MacBook running on Big Sur.
  2. Updated Jan 25, 2021: We've retested the monitor to further investigate the BGR sub-pixel layout's effect on text clarity.

Video

Test Results

perceptual testing image
Design
Design
Style
Curved No
Curve Radius Not Curved
Weight (without stand)
9.0 lbs (4.1 kg)
Weight (with stand)
13.7 lbs (6.2 kg)

The Gigabyte M27Q Gaming Monitor has a relatively simple design that's nearly identical to the Gigabyte G27QC but with a flat, non-curved screen. It has thin borders on three sides with a slightly thicker bottom bezel and a flat V-shaped stand.

Design
Stand
Width
15.7" (40.0 cm)
Depth
7.4" (18.8 cm)

The stand doesn't take up much desk space, and since it's flat, you can still put things on top of it. It feels sturdy, and the screen doesn't wobble much when nudged.

5.3
Design
Ergonomics
Height Adjustment
5.1" (13.0 cm)
Switch Portrait/Landscape No
Swivel Range No swivel
Tilt Range -20° to 5°

The Gigabyte M27Q has poor ergonomics. It only allows for height and tilt adjustments, making it harder to place the screen for optimal viewing and for sharing content with others. If you'd prefer a gaming monitor with better ergonomics, check out the Dell Alienware AW2721D.

Design
Back
Wall Mount VESA 100x100

The back has a clean and modern design that's identical to the Gigabyte G27QC, with the same mix of matte and glossy plastic. The stand has a small cutout for cable management. Unfortunately, there's no quick-release feature to remove the stand for VESA-mounting.

Design
Borders
Borders
0.3" (0.8 cm)

The Gigabyte M27Q has thin borders that aren't distracting, great for a multi-monitor setup.

Design
Thickness
Thickness (with stand)
5.8" (14.8 cm)
Thickness (without stand)
1.7" (4.3 cm)

The Gigabyte M27Q is thin with and without the stand. It doesn't require a deep desk and doesn't stick out when VESA-mounted.

7.5
Design
Build Quality

The Gigabyte M27Q's build quality is good. It's entirely made out of plastic, but it feels sturdy, and there are no obvious issues with the construction. There's very little flex on the back, and the stand supports the monitor well.

Picture Quality
6.3
Picture Quality
Contrast
Native Contrast
1184 : 1
Contrast With Local Dimming
N/A

Like most IPS panel monitors, the Gigabyte G27Q has a mediocre contrast ratio, which results in blacks looking grayish when viewed in the dark. It's slightly higher than the advertised 1000:1 contrast; however, this can vary between individual units.

0
Picture Quality
Local Dimming
Local Dimming
No
Backlight
Edge

The Gigabyte M27Q monitor doesn't have a local dimming feature. The video above is provided for reference only.

8.3
Picture Quality
SDR Peak Brightness
SDR Real Scene
434 cd/m²
SDR Peak 2% Window
422 cd/m²
SDR Peak 10% Window
423 cd/m²
SDR Peak 25% Window
423 cd/m²
SDR Peak 50% Window
423 cd/m²
SDR Peak 100% Window
423 cd/m²
SDR Sustained 2% Window
422 cd/m²
SDR Sustained 10% Window
422 cd/m²
SDR Sustained 25% Window
423 cd/m²
SDR Sustained 50% Window
422 cd/m²
SDR Sustained 100% Window
423 cd/m²
SDR ABL
0.000

The Gigabyte G27Q has great SDR peak brightness, quite a bit higher than the advertised 350 cd/m². There's no brightness variation when displaying different scenes, and it's bright enough to combat glare.

We measured the SDR peak brightness in the 'Custom 1' Picture Mode with Brightness set to max.

7.0
Picture Quality
HDR Peak Brightness
HDR Real Scene
443 cd/m²
HDR Peak 2% Window
432 cd/m²
HDR Peak 10% Window
434 cd/m²
HDR Peak 25% Window
434 cd/m²
HDR Peak 50% Window
434 cd/m²
HDR Peak 100% Window
435 cd/m²
HDR Sustained 2% Window
432 cd/m²
HDR Sustained 10% Window
432 cd/m²
HDR Sustained 25% Window
433 cd/m²
HDR Sustained 50% Window
434 cd/m²
HDR Sustained 100% Window
434 cd/m²
HDR ABL
0.000

The HDR peak brightness is decent and meets the required 400 cd/m² for its DisplayHDR 400 certification. It's again very consistent, but not much brighter than in SDR. It can bring out some highlights in HDR games, but it's not bright enough for HDR movies.

We measured the HDR peak brightness in the 'Custom 1' Picture Mode with Brightness set to max.

8.0
Picture Quality
Horizontal Viewing Angle
Color Washout From Left
37 °
Color Washout From Right
39 °
Color Shift From Left
69 °
Color Shift From Right
70 °
Brightness Loss From Left
44 °
Brightness Loss From Right
46 °
Black Level Raise From Left
70 °
Black Level Raise From Right
70 °
Gamma Shift From Left
39 °
Gamma Shift From Right
40 °

The Gigabyte M27Q has great horizontal viewing angles. Images remain accurate when viewed from the side, good for sharing content or playing co-op games.

8.0
Picture Quality
Vertical Viewing Angle
Color Washout From Below
34 °
Color Washout From Above
37 °
Color Shift From Below
65 °
Color Shift From Above
70 °
Brightness Loss From Below
35 °
Brightness Loss From Above
38 °
Black Level Raise From Below
62 °
Black Level Raise From Above
70 °
Gamma Shift From Below
47 °
Gamma Shift From Above
59 °

Great vertical viewing angles. This means that images remain accurate if you mount the monitor above eye level.

8.5
Picture Quality
Gray Uniformity
50% Std. Dev.
2.726 %
50% DSE
0.123 %
5% Std. Dev.
0.423 %
5% DSE
0.064 %

The Gigabyte M27Q has excellent gray uniformity; however, this can vary between units. The left and right edges are darker, but it's fairly minor and shouldn't be visible in most content. There's very little dirty screen effect, and uniformity is much better in near-dark scenes.

5.5
Picture Quality
Black Uniformity
Native Std. Dev.
2.337 %
Std. Dev. w/ L.D.
N/A

Black uniformity is sub-par, but this can vary between individual units due to manufacturing tolerances. The whole screen looks blue/gray, and there's visible backlight bleed along the top and bottom edges. Also, the bottom edge seems to have a reddish tone. That said, this is only visible when viewing dark scenes in a dark room.

9.1
Picture Quality
Pre Calibration
Picture Mode
sRGB
Luminance
148 cd/m²
Luminance Settings
85
Contrast Setting
N/A
RGB Controls
Default
Gamma Setting
Default
Color Temperature
6581 K
White Balance dE
1.45
Color dE
0.97
Gamma
2.25

The Gigabyte M27Q has outstanding accuracy out of the box. The minor inaccuracies with all colors and shades of gray aren't visible to the naked eye. The color temperature is very close to our 6500K target, slightly on the cooler side. Gamma follows the sRGB curve relatively well, but dark scenes appear darker than they should. Note that accuracy can vary between units.

9.3
Picture Quality
Post Calibration
Picture Mode
Custom 1
Luminance
102 cd/m²
Luminance Settings
12
Contrast Setting
50
RGB Controls
96-100-95
Gamma Setting
Gamma 3
Color Temperature
6543 K
White Balance dE
1.21
Color dE
0.72
Gamma
2.18

Accuracy is only slightly better after calibration since it was already outstanding out of the box. White balance and color dE improved a bit, and the color temperature is closer to our 6500K target. Gamma is better, but very dark and very bright scenes are now over-brightened.

You can download our ICC profile calibration here. This is provided for reference only and shouldn't be used, as the calibration values vary per individual unit due to manufacturing tolerances, even for the same model.

9.8
Picture Quality
SDR Color Gamut
sRGB xy
99.6 %
Adobe RGB xy
97.3 %
sRGB Picture Mode
Custom 1
Adobe RGB Picture Mode
Custom 1

The Gigabyte M27Q has a superb SDR color gamut. It covers the entire sRGB color space used in most content and has near-full coverage of the Adobe RGB color space. It's one of the highest Adobe RGB coverage that we've seen for a monitor in its price range, making it a fantastic choice for photo editors working in that color gamut.

9.6
Picture Quality
SDR Color Volume
sRGB In ICtCp
97.4 %
Adobe RGB In ICtCp
95.2 %
sRGB Picture Mode
Custom 1
Adobe RGB Picture Mode
Custom 1

Exceptional SDR color volume. It only has trouble displaying dark colors due to its low contrast ratio.

8.0
Picture Quality
HDR Color Gamut
Wide Color Gamut
Yes
DCI P3 xy
85.8 %
Rec. 2020 xy
74.1 %
DCI P3 Picture Mode
Custom 1
Rec. 2020 Picture Mode
Custom 1

The Gigabyte M27Q has a great HDR color gamut. It has excellent coverage of the commonly-used DCI P3 color space and decent coverage of the wider Rec. 2020.

The DCI P3 coverage is lower than the advertised 92%. This is due to the way we measure DCI P3. We measure DCI P3 by sending a Rec. 2020 signal, but unlike most reviewers, we limit the colors to the DCI P3 primaries. This results in a lower but arguably more accurate measurement.

7.0
Picture Quality
HDR Color Volume
DCI-P3 In ICtCp
79.0 %
Rec. 2020 In ICtCp
61.9 %
DCI P3 Picture Mode
Custom 1
Rec. 2020 Picture Mode
Custom 1

Decent HDR color volume. It can't produce dark colors well due to its low contrast ratio. It also has difficulty with bright blues, although that's typical for LCDs.

10
Picture Quality
Image Retention
IR After 0 Min Recovery
0.00 %
IR After 2 Min Recovery
0.00 %
IR After 4 Min Recovery
0.00 %
IR After 6 Min Recovery
0.00 %
IR After 8 Min Recovery
0.00 %
IR After 10 Min Recovery
0.00 %

The Gigabyte M27Q doesn't show any signs of image retention; however, this can vary between individual units.

9.5
Picture Quality
Gradient
Color Depth
10 Bit

The Gigabyte M27Q has exceptional gradient handling. There's some very minor banding in the grays, which shouldn't be noticeable in most content.

10
Picture Quality
Color Bleed
Pixel Row Error
0.001 %
Pixel Column Error
0.001 %

There's no color bleed on the Gigabyte M27Q.

7.3
Picture Quality
Reflections
Screen Finish
Matte
Total Reflections
5.4 %
Indirect Reflections
2.5 %
Calculated Direct Reflections
2.8 %

The Gigabyte M27Q has decent reflection handling. You may have some issues with glare if there's direct sunlight, but the screen gets bright enough to compensate.

7.5
Picture Quality
Text Clarity
Sub-Pixel Layout
BGR

Update 02/12/21: We tested text clarity with a MacBook running on Big Sur. It appears that macOS doesn't use sub-pixel dimming in any of the apps we tested, which includes Safari, TextEdit, Notes, Finder, and Chrome. This means that blurry text isn't caused by the BGR sub-pixel layout. We've added some photos below.

Update 01/25/2021: We've retested the monitor to further investigate the BGR sub-pixel layout's effect on text clarity. In most instances, text clarity is minimally impacted and shouldn't be an issue for most people. If it is, you can mount the monitor upside down, although there are some drawbacks as it increases input lag and causes G-SYNC to not work properly. We've also included more photos to show how text looks like at 100% and 125% scaling, with and without ClearType, and with the monitor upside down.

The Gigabyte M27Q has good text clarity. Windows ClearType (top photo) makes diagonal lines look better, like on the R and N. It uses a BGR sub-pixel layout, which doesn't affect image quality, but it can cause blurry text, especially in programs that aren't affected by ClearType. That said, the difference in text clarity between RGB and BGR isn't very noticeable at native scaling unless you're actively looking for it, so it shouldn't be an issue for most people.

If text looks blurry due to the BGR sub-pixel layout, you can mount the screen upside down, which gives it a proper RGB layout. However, this workaround seems to increase the input lag to 15.1 ms instead of the 3.2 ms that we measured at maximum refresh rate. Also, G-SYNC doesn't work properly as it seems like there's some form of V-SYNC enabled when the screen is upside down.

Here are some photos taken at 100% and 125% scaling, with ClearType on and off, as well as with the screen turned upside down:

No Scaling, Cleartype set to BGR

No Scaling, Cleartype off

No Scaling, Cleartype set to RGB

No Scaling, Google Sheets

125% Scaling, Cleartype set to BGR

125% Scaling, Cleartype off

125% Scaling, Cleartype set to RGB

125% Scaling, Google Sheets

Screen upside down, Cleartype Off

Screen upside down, Cleartype On

Screen upside down, Google Sheets

Here are some photos of text from a MacBook running on Big Sur:

TextEdit

Google Sheets in Safari

Safari Search Bar

Notes

Finder

Sheets in Google Chrome

Motion
9.3
Motion
Response Time @ Max Refresh Rate
Best Overdrive Setting
Picture Quality
Rise / Fall Time
4.7 ms
Total Response Time
8.4 ms
Overshoot Error
0.0 %
Dark Rise / Fall Time
5.3 ms
Dark Total Response Time
9.1 ms
Dark Overshoot Error
0.0 %

Overdrive Setting Response Time Chart Response Time Tables Motion Blur Photo
Picture Quality Chart Table Photo
Balance Chart Table Photo
Speed Chart Table Photo

The Gigabyte M27Q has exceptional response time at its max refresh rate, resulting in clear images and almost no blur trail behind fast-moving objects. The best Overdrive setting is 'Picture Quality' because the other options have too much overshoot.

9.2
Motion
Response Time @ 60Hz
Best Overdrive Setting
Picture Quality
Rise / Fall Time
4.7 ms
Total Response Time
9.9 ms
Overshoot Error
0 %
Dark Rise / Fall Time
5.2 ms
Dark Total Response Time
9.4 ms
Dark Overshoot Error
0.0 %

Overdrive Setting Response Time Chart Response Time Tables Motion Blur Photo
Picture Quality Chart Table Photo
Balance Chart Table Photo
Speed Chart Table Photo

The Gigabyte M27Q's response time at 60Hz is outstanding. The image isn't as clear as at max refresh rate, but there's almost no trail behind fast-moving objects and no overshoot. The best Overdrive setting is again 'Picture Quality', which is great because you don't have to change the setting if your frame rate drops.

10
Motion
Image Flicker
Flicker-Free Yes
PWM Dimming Frequency
0 Hz

The Gigabyte M27Q 27" gaming monitor has a flicker-free backlight, which minimizes image duplication and helps reduce eye strain.

7.1
Motion
Black Frame Insertion (BFI)
Black Frame Insertion (BFI)
Yes
BFI Maximum Frequency
170 Hz
BFI Minimum Frequency
100 Hz

The Gigabyte M27Q has an optional Black Frame Insertion feature to improve motion clarity, called Aim Stabilizer. However, it isn't usable while VRR is active, and it only works above 100Hz. When enabled, it locks the Overdrive setting to 'Speed'. Also, it causes slight image duplication due to crosstalk.

Note that the BFI score is based on the minimum and maximum frequency at which it can operate, not the BFI's performance.

9.2
Motion
Refresh Rate
Native
170 Hz
Max Refresh Rate
170 Hz
Variable Refresh Rate