G-SYNC HDR Monitors see $200 Price Cut at Microcenter

Subject: Displays | July 12, 2018 - 10:45 AM |
Tagged: Predator X27, PG27UQ, hdr, g-sync, asus, acer

This morning, while searching for retail availability of G-SYNC HDR monitors, we came across a sale at Microcenter, already discounting these newly released high-end displays.

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Both the ASUS ROG Swift PG27UQ (which we reviewed a few weeks ago), and the Acer Predator X27 are available for $1800 at the time of writing, a $200 discount from MSRP.

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In addition to what looks like plenty of stock in our local store, these monitors are also available for the same price from the Microcenter Web Store and able to be shipped anywhere in the US. This is unusual as generally, Microcenter sale prices, like their deep discounts on CPUs, aren't available through their online store.

Obviously, retailers are at their own discretion to discount products, so don't take this as guidance from NVIDIA, Acer, or ASUS as Microcenter seems to be the only retailer offering this price. Still, a 10% price discount on premium products like these, shortly after launch isn't exactly a good sign for sales numbers.

Even at $1,800, we would still say that these monitors are too expensive to recommend, but a 10% discount is nice on what we consider to be the highest quality PC gaming monitor on the market.

Source: Microcenter

A shiny new tablet from Acer, the Chromebook Tab 10

Subject: Mobile | June 29, 2018 - 06:34 PM |
Tagged: Chromebook, acer, tablet, chrome os, Tab 10

Featuring a 9.7" 2048×1536 IPS touchscreen powered by a Mali T860, an OP1 which is a dual-core Cortex A72 and quad-core Cortex A53 with 4GB LPDDR3 and 34GB of local storage the $330 Acer Tab 10 sounds quite interesting.  The performance of the OP1 chip falls behind the pack, falling behind even the Tab S3 however this extends the battery life, Ars Technica saw it last 651 minutes in their WiFi test.   Along with the tablet you get a Wacom stylus, which is effective for note taking and simple sketches, though the tablet does not offer real time writing to text which could be a turn off.  Also worth mentioning is the USB-C 3.1 Gen 1 port that charges the tablet but can also be used for data transfer or connecting to an external monitor.

It might not be great for architects and artists but for a student this might be a great low cost mobile tool.

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"Chrome OS took over schools with clamshells, but now Google is shaking things up with slabs. After a spring announcement, Acer has built the first Chrome OS tablet, the $329 Chromebook Tab 10, to give teachers and students a more flexible device to use for schoolwork both in and out of the classroom."

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Source: Ars Technica

Laptop vendors are left sitting on the sidelines waiting for the next waltz to start

Subject: General Tech | June 27, 2018 - 02:34 PM |
Tagged: hp, dell, Lenovo, acer, asus, Intel

Intel's delayed release of a new processor is going to have a noticeable effect on the laptop market this year.  As there is little chance of seeing anything new until towards the end of this year, laptop designers will not be able to offer new models for the holidays and will instead have to rework existing products.  DigiTimes suggests we will see trimmed down models with lower price tags to try to entice consumers into purchasing something, as they expect lower demand than we saw last year.  Hopefully some gaming machines may become more affordable, or we will start to see models incorporating AMD's new chips become more common.

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"Global notebook vendors including HP, Dell, Lenovo, Acer and Asustek Computer will be unable to launch new models fitted with Intel's new-generation CPUs in the second half of 2018 as scheduled, as the release of Intel's new offerings will not come soon enough for this year's high season, according to industry sources."

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Source: DigiTimes

Alienware strikes back?

Subject: General Tech | June 20, 2018 - 12:47 PM |
Tagged: dell, Lenovo, acer, asus, msi, gaming laptop, hp

The gaming laptop market is going through some big changes, with the two market leaders seeing their dominance challenged by companies more frequently associated with business models.  While ASUS and MSI still account for half of the entire market, both with over a million units sold in the first half of 2018, Dell has already hit 500K and DigiTimes predicts Lenovo to hit 800-900K units by the end of the year

It will be interesting to see how the market changes now that you can once again buy a GPU for less than the price of one of these gaming laptops; not to mention what this competition will do to pricing and design.

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"But their market leaderships are being undermined by Dell, Lenovo, HP and even Acer, all of which are strengthening their shipment momentum via pricing competition in the first half of 2018, with both ASP and gross margins for gaming notebooks driven down as a result."

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Source: DigiTimes

Psst! Hey buddy, wanna buy an AMD powered gaming machine?

Subject: Systems | May 31, 2018 - 04:18 PM |
Tagged: ryzen 7, Predator Orion 5000, Predator Helios 500, Predator, nitro 50, gaming machine, amd, acer

The wait is almost over for those looking for a boutique built AMD gaming machine, of either the mobile or sedentary variety according to the announcement today from Acer.  They've announced the pending arrival of three new systems, the Predator Orion 5000 and Acer Nitro 50 desktops as well as the Predator Helios 500 gaming laptop all of which will be shown off at Computex 2018 in Taipei.

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Starting small, well relatively so, is the $2100, 17.3" Helios 500 laptop which comes with your choice of Freesync display, either a 1080p with a 144Hz top refresh rate or a 4k display if you so prefer.  Inside is a Ryzen 2 processor and a Vega 56 GPU, cooled by Acer's AeroBlade 3D metal fans, with exhaust worthy of a CEC YT-1300.  It also has some interesting audio features, using  Waves Nx head-tracking technology to control the built in speakers to give you a more immersive audio experience.

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Next in power would be the Acer Nitro 50 desktop, also featuring a second generation Ryzen processor and a choice of either RX 580 or GTX 1060 GPUs to power your chosen monitor.  As with the CPU and GPU, the storage depends on the model you chose, with a 516GB SSD and 3TB HDD at the top tier.  The Nitro 50 also comes with a Qi compatible wireless charging deck for wireless lovers.  It will start at $900 and head up from there.

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Last comes the big hitter, the Predator Orion 5000 pairing a Ryzen 2 with a GTX 1080 in it's most powerful configuration.  As you would expect from a $1500+ system, it has been designed to look good as well as perform.  Tempered glass on the side, with easy access to the interior for upgrades along with comprehensive cable management and Acer's IceTunnel 2.0 airflow management system which segregates your components into different sections to improve heat transfer. 

You can't buy them quite yet but expect to hear more about these and other Ryzen powered gaming machines in the near future.

Source: Acer

Podcast #500 - Steam cache, Ultra ultra wide Samsung monitor, and more!

Subject: General Tech | May 24, 2018 - 05:37 PM |
Tagged: Z390, video, steam, spectre, Samsung, QLC NAND, Predator X27, podcast, nzxt, logitech, GTX1050, G513, FreeSync2, corsair, asus, acer

PC Perspective Podcast #500 - 05/24/18

Join us this week for discussion on Steam cache, Ultra ultra wide Samsung monitor, and more!

You can subscribe to us through iTunes and you can still access it directly through the RSS page HERE.

The URL for the podcast is: http://pcper.com/podcast - Share with your friends!

Hosts: Ryan Shrout, Allyn Malventano, Jeremy Hellstrom, Josh Walrath

Peanut Gallery: Ken Addison, Alex Lustenberg

Program length: 1:55:11

Podcast topics of discussion:
  1. 0:07:30 We reminisce about 500 episodes...
  2. Week in Review:
  3. News items of interest:
  4. Picks of the Week:
    1. 1:45:15 Jeremy: Xbox Adaptive Controller
    2. 1:47:25 Josh: How cheap can we go?
  5. Closing/outro
 
Source:

ASUS Unveils Pricing, Availability for PG27UQ HDR-enabled G-SYNC Display

Subject: Displays | May 23, 2018 - 04:21 PM |
Tagged: Predator X27, PG27UQ, hdr, g-sync hdr, displayhdr 1000, asus, acer

We're one step closer to the official launch of G-SYNC HDR displays with the official announcement of a release window and pricing from ASUS for their PG27UQ 27" G-SYNC HDR Display. While the Acer Predator X27 was put up for pre-order last week and is set to ship on June 1st, this is the first indication of release details we have for the ASUS PG27UQ.

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ASUS is touting the PG27UQ as the first "gaming monitor" to achieve VESA's DisplayHDR 1000 certification. While we've seen the announcement of another DisplayHDR 1000 monitor, the Phillips Momentum, it comes in at a TV-sized 43 inches.

DisplayHDR 1000 certification is achieved through the utilization of a 384-zone 1000cd/m2 peak brightness backlight as well as a quantum dot layer which allows the IPS panel to support 97% DCI-P3 and 99% AdobeRGB color gamut.

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The PG27UQ also features ambient lighting controlled by their the ASUS Aura Sync software. A built-in ROG Light Signal will allow users to cast the ROG logo on the wall behind their monitor if they so choose.

The ASUS PG27UQ will be available in North America for a price of $1,999.99 starting in late June 2018.

Source: ASUS

Acer's new FreeSync Nitro displays

Subject: Displays | May 23, 2018 - 03:14 PM |
Tagged: VG0, RG0, nitro, ips, freesync, acer

Acer announced two new series of IPS displays in their recent press conference, the 4k Nitro VG0 and 1080p Nitro RG0.  The VG0 is available in 21.5", 23.8" and 27" models, all of which are available in 4k resolution, Freesync capable with a top refresh rate of 144Hz and a variety of colour management features, from six axis colour adjustment to 11 different black levels. 

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The Nitro RG0 features a impressively svelte .27" profile on both its 27" and 23.8" displays.  The maximum variable refresh rate is a bit lower, at 75Hz as is the 1080p resolution.  This display is more appropriate for those lacking the GPU power to run at higher resolutions or those who opt for multiple displays. 

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These Nitro displays offer 72% NTSC colour coverage and ship with a pair of 2W speakers inside the bezel.  HDMI, VGA and DisplayPort connections are available, depending on your preference and they offer a variety of display modes as well as Acer's VisionCare which includes Flickerless, BlueLightShield and ComfyView.  As these are Freesync displays, the pricing is quite reasonable, the VG0 starts at $130 while the RG0 can be yours for $170. 

You can watch the full press conference here.

Source: Acer

Acer Predator X27 4K G-SYNC HDR Monitor listed on Newegg

Subject: General Tech | May 18, 2018 - 12:02 PM |
Tagged: Predator X27, PG27UQ, hdr, g-sync, asus, acer, 4k, 144hz

Thanks to a listing that appeared on Newegg this morning, we seem to finally have an idea of what pricing will be like for the long-awaited 27" 4K HDR G-Sync displays in the US region.

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For the amount of $2,000, you can now preorder the Acer Predator X27 monitor from Newegg, with a scheduled release date of June 1, 2018.

While $2,000 is a lot for a display, this pricing doesn't come as a surprise. After several rumors and leaked pricing from other territories, it became apparent that this would be a costly product.

Originally announced at CES 2017, G-SYNC HDR displays have been delayed several times, with the latest word being that they will be available by the end of the month

We still have no word on pricing of the ASUS PG27UQ with the same specifications as the Predator X27, but I would expect it to be very similar if not nearly identical.

Source: Newegg
Author:
Subject: Displays
Manufacturer: Acer

When PC monitors made the mainstream transition to widescreen aspect ratios in the mid-2000s, many manufacturers opted for resolutions at a 16:10 ratio. My first widescreen displays were a pair of Dell monitors with a 1920x1200 resolution and, as time and technology marched forward, I moved to larger 2560x1600 monitors.

I grew to rely on and appreciate the extra vertical resolution that 16:10 displays offer, but as the production and development of "widescreen" PC monitors matured, it naturally began to merge with the television industry, which had long since settled on a 16:9 aspect ratio. This led to the introduction of PC displays with native resolutions of 1920x1080 and 2560x1440, keeping things simple for activities such as media playback but robbing consumers of pixels in terms of vertical resolution.

I was well-accustomed to my 16:10 monitors when the 16:9 aspect ratio took over the market, and while I initially thought that the 120 or 160 missing rows of pixels wouldn't be missed, I was unfortunately mistaken. Those seemingly insignificant pixels turned out to make a noticeable difference in terms of on-screen productivity real estate, and my 1080p and 1440p displays have always felt cramped as a result.

I was therefore sad to see that the relatively new ultrawide monitor market continued the trend of limited vertical resolutions. Most ultrawides feature a 21:9 aspect ratio with resolutions of 2560x1080 or 3440x1440. While this gives users extra resolution on the sides, it maintains the same limited height options of those ubiquitous 1080p and 1440p displays. The ultrawide form factor is fantastic for movies and games, but while some find them perfectly acceptable for productivity, I still felt cramped.

Thankfully, a new breed of ultrawide monitors is here to save the day. In the second half of 2017, display manufactures such as Dell, Acer, and LG launched 38-inch ultrawide monitors with a 3840x1600 resolution. Just like the how the early ultrawides "stretched" a 1080p or 1440p monitor, the 38-inch versions do the same for my beloved 2560x1600 displays.

The Acer XR382CQK

I've had the opportunity to test one of these new "taller" displays thanks to a review loan from Acer of the XR382CQK, a curved 37.5-inch behemoth. It shares the same glorious 3840x1600 resolution as others in its class, but it also offers some unique features, including a 75Hz refresh rate, USB-C input, and AMD FreeSync support.

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Based on my time with the XR382CQK, my hopes for those extra 160 of resolution were fulfilled. The height of the display area felt great for tasks like video editing in Premiere and referencing multiple side-by-side documents and websites, and the gaming experience was just as satisfying. And with its 38-inch size, the display is quite usable at 100 percent scaling.

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There's also an unexpected benefit for video content that I hadn't originally considered. I was so focused on regaining that missing vertical resolution that I initially failed to appreciate the jump in horizontal resolution from 3440px to 3840px. This is the same horizontal resolution as the consumer UHD standard, which means that 4K movies in a 21:9 or similar aspect ratio will be viewable in their full size with a 1:1 pixel ratio.

Continue reading our look at 38-inch 3840x1600 ultrawide monitors!