Nvidia's eye-searing new G-Sync Ultimate monitors push displays even further into the future

When Nvidia’s G-Sync Ultimate monitors launched in 2018, they were hands-down the best gaming monitors ever created. Not only were they among the first 4K, 144Hz monitors available, but they were some of the first 1000-nit HDR monitors available too, and the displays were loaded with all-sorts of bleeding-edge tech. We crowned the $2000 Acer Predator X27 “the Holy Grail of gaming monitors” despite some niggling quirks.

Now, Nvidia and its partners are pushing things even further—while squashing those minor irritations.

Announced Monday at CES in Las Vegas, the new breed of G-Sync Ultimate monitors (née G-Sync HDR) cram a whopping 1,152 backlight zones behind the screen, compared to the already-damned-impressive 384 backlight zones in the original behemoths. More backlights mean the IPS panel can generate high-dynamic resolution (HDR) images with that much more precision, delivering a much more impressive contrast ratio. Speaking of HDR, the 1000-nit Predator X27 is still one of the brightest panels around, but these new 10-bit-color G-Sync Ultimate displays crank things to 11 with a searing 1400 nits. Wow.

I still use the Predator X27 regularly because its image quality is brilliant, especially in games that support HDR. I can’t even fathom how good these new 1400-nit G-Sync Ultimate displays with 1,152 backlights will look. I don’t get excited over spec sheets very often, but I’m already drooling.

Beyond those behind-the-screen improvements, the new G-Sync Ultimate monitors—the Acer Predator X32 and Asus PG32UQX—up the screen size itself to 32-inches, a very welcome change. One of our few complaints with the original models were that their 4K resolution felt a little bit too tight on their 27-inch screens, making text and other fine details appear a bit too small without some heavy tinkering in Windows. It’s a relief to see these newer models add extra real estate.

Of course, they’re still stocked with all the other juicy features that helped make G-Sync Ultimate so, well, ultimate. The 4K, 144Hz screen is screaming fast, packed with accurate DCI-P3 color and enhanced with Quantum Dot technology. If you can name a monitor technology, these probably have it.

Bottom line: We flat-out adored the original G-Sync Ultimate displays. “This is the first monitor in recent memory that truly feels like it’s advancing the state of the art, and by a substantial amount,” we said about the Predator X27. The idea of bigger, better versions with 1,152 backlight zones and 1400 nits’ brightness raises the bar even higher. Rumors of G-Sync’s demise have been greatly exaggerated.

Nvidia didn’t reveal pricing or release date information for these, but we’re hoping to go eyes-on at Nvidia’s CES suite later this week. Stay tuned.  

Coinciding with this reveal, Nvidia also announced that LG’s 2020 OLED displays will be G-Sync Compatible if you having a GTX 16-series or RTX 20-series GeForce graphics card, continuing an endeavor that kicked off in 2019.

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