Review: BenQ 4K HDR EL2870U monitor

They say the simplest things in life are often the best and the newly Australian-available BenQ EL2870U is one of the best examples of that sentiment. This 28” 4K HDR beauty takes two of the most requested features in the current gaming landscape and packages them into a no frills, non-ghastly, light strobing free enclosure that retails for under A$600.

Inside of that you’ll find a 4K TN LCD panel that taps out at 60Hz, which for console gaming and normal desktop usage wont be a problem at all. For those of you with beast-mode video cards pushing the extremes then 60Hz probably wont be the right fit you. The TN panel may also turn some people off. Unlike an IPS LCD colour can shift when viewing it from different angles so photographs and graphic professionals probably wont be using one but for gaming purposes you’re more than fine in my opinion.

It’s HDR chops whilst there, and taken advantage of by your PS4 Pro or Xbox One X, aren’t necessarily the cream of the crop but they’re there, which is more than most can say. I noticed a significant difference when playing through God of War on my PS4 Pro but like other reviewers, have noticed the black areas a little crushed at times with what looks a little like compression artefacts. It’s also not ratified to a HDR standard like HDR10 so you’re not getting “official” HDR output from the display.

BenQ also include what they call “Eye-care” but most people will know as “Night Shift” from their Mac or iOS device. The tech can (if you let it) shift the colour temperature and brightness levels based on time of day an ambient light. It’s designed to make your eyes less stressed when staring at a monitor but it’s also one of the first things I turn off because I love burning my retinas with the brightest, most colourful light possible.

You also get a pretty incredible 1ms response time, which is a premium that gamers will reveal in but most wont notice. When you combine that its FreeSync capabilities you’ve got a very nice little series of hidden add ons where, for those they apply to, will greatly appreciate.

 

Connectivity wise the monitor has two HDMI ports and a single DisplayPort meaning you can have a PC and a couple of consoles connected simultaneously. There’s no USB hub, which I’m sure some PC users will lament but it’s not the end of the world and just means you’re running at least one extra cord back to your PC.

The monitor also has a set of stereo speakers inside but they’re as average as you can imagine and no one in their right mind expects them to be otherwise. There’s a 3.5mm headphone jack you can plug your favourite headphones into but I prefer to connect headphones to my controller personally.

Technically the EL2870U isn’t the biggest and baddest monitor on the block but it is one of the most competent with a price tag that wont break the bank. For those looking for a new, very capable 4K monitor with the bonus of HDR for their gaming setup I’d be hard pressed to recommend anything else at the moment.

BenQ EL2870U
Design
10
Performance
10
Features
10
Pros
Price, price, price
4K & HDR
1ms response time
Cons
TN panel
No USB hub
8.5

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