Acer Predator XB252Q 240Hz Monitor Review

OSD Setup & Calibration

Pressing any of the XB252Q’s control buttons or the joystick brings up a quick menu. The first two slots are programmable, while the third is an input selector. A second click of the joystick brings up the full OSD.

The XB252Q has eight picture modes, but only User allows for calibration. However, once your settings are dialed in, they can be saved to one of the three gaming modes, which is a nice feature. The full OSD starts off with luminance sliders, a Blue Light feature, Dark Boost for low-end detail rendering, and Adaptive Contrast, which will clip shadow and highlight areas of the image while increasing perceived contrast. Making any change whatsoever will switch the picture mode to User.

The Color menu has four gamma presets ranging from 1.9 to 2.5 plus a Gaming option that looks even darker than 2.5. 2.2 measured closer to 2.4 in our tests. You also get four color temp settings plus an adjustable User mode. The sliders are very precise and start at center-range, which allowed us to dial in good accuracy without losing too much contrast. The sRGB mode fixes output at 370 nits with slightly visible color and grayscale errors. It doesn’t offer any benefit over the default presets. If you want to manipulate color saturation and luminance, those sliders are available here as well.

The Audio menu has only a volume control that operates on the internal speakers and the headphone output.

The Gaming menu has two overdrive settings. We recommend Normal. The Extreme option causes visible ghosting. It’s grayed out in ULMB mode, so you'll see faint trails behind the fastest moving objects. It’s better to stick with G-Sync, which allows overdrive. ULMB can be used up to 144Hz, and the XB252Q has plenty of output to compensate for the brightness loss. The pulse width can be adjusted over a 100-step range to balance blur-reduction with light levels. The Brightness control can be set independently for each mode. Users of 3D LightBoost will find a variable slider. And novice gamers can turn on one of three aiming reticles.

The OSD menu has multiple language options, a timeout of up to 120 seconds, and a transparency toggle. Refresh Rate Num places a large yellow FPS counter in the upper-right corner of the screen. Your friends and competitors will know your framerates even when standing across the room.

The System menu has an input selector, aspect ratio options, a Deep Sleep power-saving mode, Quick Start (saves power when off), Power LED dimming, and a USB port power setting. The ports can be left on to charge your devices when the monitor is turned off. Hot Key Assignment lets you program the first two control keys for a variety of functions saving you a trip into the OSD.

After dialing in your preferences, you can save them to one of the three gaming modes. And if you need signal info, click on the “i” icon (third key) to view input resolution, refresh rate, and mode (G-Sync, ULMB, or Normal) status. Unlike the Asus ROG monitors, the power LED doesn’t change color to indicate this. That’s a handy feature we’d like to see incorporated into the XB252Q.

Calibration

Once you set output with the brightness slider, the XB252Q will be in User mode, which means you can alter gamma, color temp, and color saturation to your liking. The native color gamut is the same regardless of mode, so we performed a grayscale adjustment and lowered the contrast control, which is set about 10 clicks too high. Leaving it alone would mean clipped detail in the brightest content and some color inaccuracy too. Out-of-box performance is merely adequate, but a few adjustments will bring the monitor to a good standard. Here are our recommended settings. When you’re satisfied, we suggest saving the settings to one of the gaming modes.

Acer Predator XB252Q Calibration Settings
Mode
User
Brightness 200cd/m2
29
Brightness 120cd/m24
Brightness 100cd/m20
Contrast
40
Gamma
2.2
Color Temp User
Red 47, Green 53, Blue 54

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  • Lucky_SLS
    These 240Hz r for the Hardcore Henry of e-sports gamers,
    Bring out the HDR and FreeSync 2 beauties !!!
  • dstarr3
    The last time I had a TN panel was 15 years ago. I should give them another shot, they probably look a lot better today than they did the last time I had one.
  • BulkZerker
    Where's the freesync version?
  • AgentLozen
    I'm happy to see that engineers keep pushing the limits of panel technologies. It's a shame that this monitor couldn't have ran at a higher resolution or used a better display technology. Subjectively, can you see the difference between 144Hz and 240Hz?

    DSTARR3 said:
    The last time I had a TN panel was 15 years ago. I should give them another shot, they probably look a lot better today than they did the last time I had one.


    I'm using a Dell TN at home. After a little calibration, I think it looks great. Sometimes I notice the shoddy viewing angles and I sometimes wonder if it would look a little nicer with 8-bit color, but I'm satisfied otherwise. If you're in the market for a gaming monitor and you don't have bionic eyes that are sensitive to minor color inaccuracy, I'm sure this monitor would be great for you.
  • joz
    Maybe I'm showing my age...

    But when did Acer become a premium product supplier? They used to sit right above "EMachines" when it came to jokes (and spec sheets) about their products performance and quality.


    That being said, I've been perfectly happy with my XB27.
  • dstarr3
    496490 said:
    I'm happy to see that engineers keep pushing the limits of panel technologies. It's a shame that this monitor couldn't have ran at a higher resolution or used a better display technology. Subjectively, can you see the difference between 144Hz and 240Hz?
    DSTARR3 said:
    The last time I had a TN panel was 15 years ago. I should give them another shot, they probably look a lot better today than they did the last time I had one.
    I'm using a Dell TN at home. After a little calibration, I think it looks great. Sometimes I notice the shoddy viewing angles and I sometimes wonder if it would look a little nicer with 8-bit color, but I'm satisfied otherwise. If you're in the market for a gaming monitor and you don't have bionic eyes that are sensitive to minor color inaccuracy, I'm sure this monitor would be great for you.


    I actually do have "bionic eyes," lol. I do a lot of photo editing that relies on color-accurate, calibrated displays, and I can pretty reliably detect inaccuracies, which is why I ditched TN panels 15 years ago. But that being said, I don't really need critical accuracy when playing games. I think I'd be alright with a super-high refresh rate at the expense of super-accurate color in games. So long as it looks, like, not obviously way off, I'm sure I'd be fine with it. The viewing angles might be problematic, though.
  • ubercake
    How can Acer use the same panel as Asus and provide a monitor with the same specs, but in reality so much lower contrast? $70 difference.
  • AgentLozen
    DSTARR3 said:
    I think I'd be alright with a super-high refresh rate at the expense of super-accurate color in games.


    That's what I'm trying to describe. There's never been a time when I was like, "Does Mercy have brown hair or blonde hair?" The picture is pretty good especially after a little calibration. I'm speaking from the experience of my Dell TN.
  • dstarr3
    299576 said:
    How can Acer use the same panel as Asus and provide a monitor with the same specs, but in reality so much lower contrast? $70 difference.


    If I had to guess, binning. The panels roll off the line, some are better than others, Asus pays the premium for the best ones, Acer takes the rest.
  • Lucky_SLS
    ^ wait, that's there even in monitor panels? I thought binning is only for cpu.
  • egyptiankang
    299576 said:
    How can Acer use the same panel as Asus and provide a monitor with the same specs, but in reality so much lower contrast? $70 difference.


    You can pick up the XB252Q for $430 if you are near a Micro Center guess it's just the Asus Rog tax.
  • dstarr3
    2381310 said:
    ^ wait, that's there even in monitor panels? I thought binning is only for cpu.


    I don't know for sure if there is such a thing as binning with monitor panels, but binning is absolutely a manufacturing procedure that extends beyond CPUs. Wristwatches, for example. A wide variety of watches use mechanisms that were built on the same assembly line, but the ones that roll off the line and keep better time go in more expensive watches.
  • Lucky_SLS
    ^ yeah, I know abt binning, but just wasn't sure abt screen panels though. Mostly cuz I don't know how they are manufactured. [mechanical engineer here ^_^]
  • extremepcs1
    I'll stick with my 16:10 IPS.
  • Rekta1981
    1440p sure but not 1080p
  • AgentLozen
    extremepcs1 said:
    I'll stick with my 16:10 IPS.


    God pulled a week of all-nighters on a 16:10 IPS when he designed the world. The art assets are all made in MSPaint and He wove it all together in assembly.
  • sztepa82
    The article starts with "In the battle for gaming monitor supremacy, there’s Acer and Asus, and then there’s everyone else." WAT.......

    I didn't bother to read any further
  • Lucky_SLS
    ^ but that's pretty much true imo. LG, all though a good panel maker, doesn't have many high end monitors and no g sync to be particular. View sonic has just entered the market and BenQ is just now slowly including g sync ones in its portfolio.
    So yes, Asus and acer are the front runners.
    Samsung monitors till now have ghosting issues.
  • AgentLozen
    I'll trade you 10 units for a copy of Noma's Virus.
  • SilentMarket
    299576 said:
    How can Acer use the same panel as Asus and provide a monitor with the same specs, but in reality so much lower contrast? $70 difference.


    Because Acer doesn't get the TÜV Low Blue Light certification, it doesn't pay for a better filtering technology, which means a bad blue light filter and intense eyes drain.
    This monitor hurts my eyes so bad in dim light that I had to returned it.
    While Asus PG258Q is fine in the dim light.