Asus TUF Gaming VG28UQL1A Review – PCMag

As 2022 trundles on, more and more high-refresh-rate gaming monitors with 4K resolution are raising the bar. While 4K gaming at high refresh rates used to be a slow, jittery, flickery experience, panel advancements like Rapid IPS are making it smoother and more gorgeous. You may be tempted to overlook plain IPS in favor of the exotic new quantum dot technology seen in displays like the $1,299.99 Alienware 34 QD-OLED and the $899.99 MSI Optix MPG321UR-QD. But new entries like the Asus TUF Gaming VG28UQL1A ($799) show us that IPS still has a few tricks left up its sleeve.

TUF Gaming Stays True

The Asus TUF Gaming VG28UQL1A is a 28-inch monitor with UHD (3,840-by-2,160-pixel) resolution and a 144Hz refresh rate, built around a Rapid IPS panel. Though the TUF brand is generally associated with Asus’ budget-friendly monitors, gaming laptops, and accessories, the use of Rapid IPS brings the VG28 well into midrange pricing for a 4K gaming monitor.

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The VG28UQL1A is mounted on a small, square metal stand with three options for adjustability: a tilt of -5 to 20 degrees, left and right swivel from -15 to 15 degrees, and 4.72 inches of height adjustment. The monitor also pivots 90 degrees between landscape and portrait mode, though we’d recommend looking for something more budget-friendly if you’re seeking a second display.

(Photo: Chris Stobing)

The back of the TUF, characteristically, is minimally styled with no RGB stripes or other flair to decorate the sleek black plastic.

(Photo: Chris Stobing)

Along the back right of the display you can access the VG28UQL1A’s full set of features, many of them clearly catering to one crowd: console gamers. From the addition of variable-rate refresh (VRR) to Extreme Low Motion Blur (ELMB), many of the available settings are intended to compensate for the lack of customizability in console graphics settings, rather than adding to the experience to which PC gamers have long been accustomed.

(Photo: Chris Stobing)

Give that this is an ostensible “budget” model among 4K-resolution, high-refresh-rate gaming panels, we were surprised to see how many ports Asus stuffed into this display. The TUF has no fewer than four HDMI ports. (Just how many devices do they think we’re hooking up to one display?) Plus, you get two USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-A ports, next to a 3.5mm headphone jack for use with the HDMI audio pass-through, as well as a mic-in port and an audio combo jack.

Testing the VG28UQL1A: IPS Hangs TUF

As mentioned, this 4K monitor features a Rapid IPS panel with a native refresh rate of 144Hz. (There’s no refresh-rate overclocking support.) We put the TUF Gaming VG28UQL1A through our standard gaming-monitor tests using a SpyderX Elite spectrometer and its companion Datacolor software. Here’s what we saw…

Testing the display in its default picture mode with an SDR signal, the panel managed a peak brightness of 310.8 nits (just above its rated 300) and a black level of 0.37 nit, which works out to a contrast ratio of 840:1. That’s OK for a gaming monitor, but falls short of Asus’ claimed 1,000:1.

HDR testing returned a max brightness of 433.5 nits, again …….



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