The first round of G-Sync HDR displays is almost here after nearly a year of delays and they look awesome, with a specification sheet that checks virtually every box a monitor nerd could dream of. But there’s been a question looming over Nvidia’s boundary-pushing screens: How much will they cost? Now we know: The Acer Predator X27 just went up for preorder at Newegg for a cool $2,000, ready to ship on June 1.
That’s more than most people spend on their entire PC, but it’s actually lower than some people expected after European stores listed G-Sync HDR displays at the equivalent of nearly $3,000. And while we’ve yet to review the Acer Predator X27, we went eyes-on with it at an Nvidia event a couple of weeks back, and it made even a luxurious 4K IPS panel sitting next to it, to quote Gordon, “look like poo.”
Check it out in video form below. Note that you won’t see the benefits of the HDR display captured on-screen if you’re watching it on a non-HDR monitor, though it’s still worth watching for our dive into technical nuances.
Speaking of technical nuances, 4K G-Sync HDR panels are basically the holy grail of monitors on paper. They push frames faster than existing 4K displays, at a blistering 144Hz, and the high-dynamic range visuals get a boost from 384 backlight zones and Nvidia’s game-smoothing G-Sync technology. Those colors are dead-on accurate, too, as the Acer X27 and its rival Asus ROG Swift PG27UQ hit 99 percent of the AdobeRGB color gamut. The panels shine at an eye-searing 1,000 nits of brightness to meet HDR10’s requirements and make images truly high dynamic—when I viewed the Asus G-Sync HDR display at CES 2017, I physically had to shield my eyes when an explosion burst on-screen.
4K 144Hz will need a powerful GPU
Zotac GeForce GTX 1080 Ti AMP Extreme Core Edition
The initial displays bearing AMD’s FreeSync 2 technology max out at 600 nits of brightness, for comparison, and the Samsung CHG70 we’ve tested only hits 144Hz and 1440p resolution. It’s one of the best monitors I’ve used, and “only” costs $700, but it can’t come close to matching the specs of these G-Sync HDR display.
The bleeding-edge of technology never comes cheap, and even at $2,000, the Acer Predator X27 seems likely to make deep-pocketed enthusiasts happy. One caveat: The GeForce GTX 1080 Ti, Nvidia’s most powerful consumer graphics card, doesn’t pack enough firepower to drive 4K at 144Hz in today’s flagship games. Here’s hoping Nvidia releases new GPUs sooner than later to help early adopters get the most out of these displays.
Brad Chacos spends his days digging through desktop PCs and tweeting too much. He specializes in graphics cards and gaming, but covers everything from security to Windows tips and all manner of PC hardware.