ViewSonic XG240R gaming monitor
"The ViewSonic XG240R checks every box for a solid gaming monitor at an affordable price."
Fast refresh rate of 144 Hz
RGB lighting on the back
Good picture quality, accurate colors
Boring plastic design
In the past, a high refresh rate was a premium feature that was only reserved for budgets in order to be able to afford high-performance gaming rigs. But nowadays it's a feature that we see in cheaper options as well.
The ViewSonic XG240R is a good example at $ 273. It is a 24-inch full HD monitor with a TN panel that contains everything a gaming enthusiast needs without breaking the bank. With features like RGB back lighting, support for AMD FreeSync technology and a refresh rate of 144 Hz, the XG240R can really impress for its price.
Restrained, but with RGB
The ViewSonic XG240R is immediately ready for use. It has a plastic design with thick bezels that wrap around the corners of the display. The base is also similar and has a clean and brushed plastic finish. If you want high quality workmanship and materials, you have to look elsewhere.
In a matte black color, it looks more like something that belongs in an office than a gaming setup. Still, that's not a bad thing as the plastic design is sturdy. The monitor weighs about 14 pounds and is built like a tank, but surprisingly easy to carry. We also did not notice any bending or bending when pressing on the sides.
Arif Bacchus / Digital Trends
The ergonomics go well together, since the monitor can be easily rotated completely into a lateral vertical angle of 90 degrees – as is common with most monitors like the Asus ROG Swift PG27UQ. It is also VESA certified, so setup is quick. The column snaps directly into the back and can be easily attached to the base with a single screw. It can be tilted five degrees forwards and 20 degrees backwards, swiveled up to 45 degrees left and right, and a decent height adjustment of 120 mm.
However, the ViewSonic XG240R fades when switched on. On the back of the device there are two illuminated areas in the form of arrowheads, which are shifted in spectral colors as standard. You can adjust the lighting and synchronize it with the Razer Chroma, Thermaltake and Cooler Master peripherals.
After switching on, the ViewSonic XG240R is dazzling.
Since the XG240R does not have its own software, Masterplus + from Cooler Master is the standard program for adaptation and does not require any additional peripheral devices to set up. To get the software to customize with other Razer or Thermaltake peripherals, it must also be downloaded separately.
With the speakers, the 2 x 2 watt down-firing speakers offer no quality. It is installed and aligned on the lower sides of the display. While this may sound like the ideal position audio could put on your face, we wouldn't recommend depending on it. Even when the volume was raised to 100 percent, we had trouble hearing conversations during the cutscenes in Battlefield V. We recommend buying additional speakers or headphones instead if you want a really impressive audio experience with this monitor.
The ports you need
As with most modern monitors, the connections of the ViewSonic XG24OR are triggered downwards. Unfortunately, there is no panel that covers the connections – or a way to manage the cables. This keeps the cable tangle free when the monitor is sitting on a desk.
Arif Bacchus / Digital Trends
Nevertheless, the selection of ports is generous. It contains a DisplayPort and two HDMI for the display output. There is no USB-C that has not yet reached gaming monitors. Instead, there are two USB-A 3.0 ports on the left for peripheral devices and for charging.
There is also an additional USB-B 3.0 port in the same bottom area. Compared to premium monitors like the Alienware AW3418DW, this connectivity is the norm. For competing budget monitors like the Asus V245H, the additional USB ports are a nice addition.
Controls front and center, but confusing menus
Controlling a monitor is important, and compared to a premium option like the Acer Predator XB3, the ViewSonic XG240R keeps things a little simple. There is no fancy joystick – just a row of six buttons, which can be found in the overview at the bottom right front of the display. The keys are very tactile and produce a satisfactory clicking sound when pressed. On the screen, you can even see which buttons fulfill the menu task on the screen. However, the buttons are not clearly identified from the front.
You can quickly switch between color modes by pressing the "G" key once. The main menu is called up by pressing one of the other five buttons. From there you get a quick overview of all important information, including the update rate, the input and the status of FreeSync and Elite RGB.
Unfortunately, the options for changing brightness and contrast are hidden under the menus. To change this, you have to press a series of four different buttons. I would have preferred quick settings for these options instead of quickly switching between color profiles.
Good for gaming, accurate colors, but limited viewing angles
We were able to achieve high frame rates without any problems when playing on newer RTX laptops such as the Legion Y740. The same performance applies to the ViewSonic XG240R. When we connected our Legion system to the monitor, we got almost identical 100 FPS in most games like Battlefield V and Civilization VI, mainly thanks to the 144 Hz panel and 1 ms response time. This fast refresh rate really pays off.
The games looked great too. When setting the preset first-person shooter mode, we were able to determine rich green grass colors with Battlefield V. We also noticed additional silver and black details as we looked through the riflescopes of a gun.
With the ViewSonic XG240R starting at $ 273, price matters.
Switching to the preset MOBA and Battle Royale modes also provided a similar experience. The colors of the miniature RC cars in the Rocket League appeared against the simple background of the arena. With the naked eye, both modes make the images brighter and create a richer and deeper look.
Interestingly, the monitor has 22 levels of black stabilization. This provides improved visibility and detail by brightening dark scenes. A total of 22 adjustable levels of black stabilization control are available via the menu. We tried it out on a nightly mission in Assassin's Creed Odyssey and in a completely dark room we really noticed that scenes got a little brighter than when the setting was turned off.
Unfortunately, tilting the monitor creates a noticeable glare despite the colors. The horizontal and vertical viewing angles of 170 degrees are not the best. This is mainly due to ViewSonic's use of a TN panel. While TN panels offer faster response times and higher contrast ratios, more expensive monitors like the LG 27UK650 often have IPS panels. Compared to TN counterparts, IPS panels produce accurate colors and larger viewing angles.
Unfortunately, it's also expensive, as best seen on a $ 379 monitor like the Acer Predator XB1. It's a shame, but with the ViewSonic XG240R starting at $ 273, price matters.
Although the ViewSonic XG240R supports AMD FreeSync for lag-free gaming, we couldn't test it on our laptop with Nvidia's RTX 2070 Max-Q graphics. The function applies instead to laptops with AMDs graphics cards. It remains a feature in most budget gaming monitors like that BenQ EL2870U as well as Asus VG245H.
On the more technical side, this monitor is also good for productivity. Despite the average screen resolution of 1080p, the contrast ratios were rated 960, which is close to the area we are normally looking for. With 350 nits it is also very bright, which in turn lags behind premium monitors.
The color gamut is rated 1.8. Adobe RGB is 72 percent, with an sRGB rating of 98 percent. That means pictures look natural. HDR support or 4K resolution may be missing, but this monitor has colors that matter.
No big difference after calibration
After the initial tests, we tested the monitor after calibration with the Spyder 5 Elite software. The improvements were subtle and the visual quality remained the same. The only difference we noticed during our reviews is a slightly lower average color ratio of 1.6 and an increased contrast ratio of 980. This monitor has no real hidden potential. To confirm this, we watched some films and TV shows.
When watching the Simpsons film, the experience after calibration was still enjoyable. Yellow in Homer Simpson's skin seemed particularly lively. As we switched to a darker film like i, Robot, images were still appearing and we noticed the sheen in the bodies of the white colored robots.
However, no calibration is required with this ready-to-use monitor.
If you need a gaming monitor and are on a budget, the ViewSonic XG240R is for you. It comes with enough you need for gaming, with bonuses like RGB lighting and support for AMD Freesync. Only dull speakers and thick bezels prevent them from being perfect.
Is there a better alternative?
There are many great budget gaming monitors out there, and the ViewSonic XG240R isn't the cheapest. A top alternative is the Asus VG245H for $ 189, which offers similar resolution, response times, FreeSync support, but no RGB lighting and is limited to a refresh rate of 75 Hz.
Other alternatives are the 27-inch Asus VG278Q for $ 296 or the 24-inch AOC G2460PF for $ 200, which has the same refresh rate of 144 Hz as the ViewSonic XG240R, but without RGB. The BenQ EL287OU is at the top. At $ 400, it is a bit more expensive, but offers 4K resolution and additional HDR support.
How long it will take?
ViewSonic offers a three-year limited warranty on parts, labor, and backlighting of the ViewSonic XG240R. That said, it should stand the test of time.
Should you buy it
Yes. If you're on a budget and don't want to spend more than $ 300 on a gaming monitor, this ViewSonic monitor is a great option.