BenQ XL2720Z gaming monitor review
This is the third BenQ monitor that I have had the pleasure to review. Today I am writing about the XL2720Z – a 27-inch gaming monitor that still packs what a gamer needs but is less painful to your pocket than the XL2730Z.
The BenQ XL2720Z has the gamer-friendly tech such as motion-blur reducing mode, ultra-low input lag, but it hasn’t got the FreeSync smarts of the 2730Z. Because of that, it is carrying a smaller price tag.
BenQ XL2720Z design and features
You can definitely tell that the XL2720Z and the XL2730Z share the same tailor. Both are clothed in black with a mostly matte finish, except for the back of the screen which gets a glossy coat.
You also get a splash of red, and both have neat carry handles atop the stand. The XL2720Z is quite nimble and is able to adjust its height, pivot, rotation and tilt.
Apparently the XL2720Z should come with a remote, just as the 2730Z did looking at the box – but this was missing in the package that I got. If it follows the same purpose as the 2730Z’s remote, this would’ve controlled the on-screen display menu and may have had some programmable shortcuts.
The XL2720Z sits on a fairly narrow, slightly curved stand which is raked, not unlike that of the RL2755HM, and it does a good job of looking after my controller (as seen in the top and final picture).
Connectivity options are many, with a VGA/D-SUB, a DisplayPort, two HDMI and dual-link DVI. That should keep most happy as this would allow you to hook up a couple of computers and even a pair of games consoles.
The other bit that was evidently missing looks to be a little red headphone hanger that would fit around the back of the stand. This must have run away with the remote control.
BenQ XL2720Z performance
The XL2720Z has got plenty of screen real-estate and I am getting used to having a 27-inch monitor now thanks to the BenQ gear. The 2720Z is full HD at 1920 x 1080 resolution – compared with the XL2730Z’s 2560 x 1440 resolution it’s obviously loosing a little sparkle, but it isn’t bad at all.
The XL2720Z is still a good way above a lot of your typical gaming screens. The aforementioned adjustable stand is great (something else I have gotten used to and find this more of a must-have than I previously considered), but there’s also the 144Hz LCD TN panel with a 1ms refresh rate. Yup, this monitor has definitely got game.
The XL2720Z is equipped with the motion-blur reducing mode which we are now familiar with. If you’ve missed the details on previous reviews, this tech uses backlight flickering to make images appear sharper and less blurry when they’re moving at high-speeds.
The low blue-light mode is here too. This helps reduce the sleep-blocking effects of staring at a screen. BenQ also claims the monitor is flicker-free, so those that are distracted by backlight flickering techniques used to reduce brightness won’t be disturbed by this monitor either.
I am happy to report that BenQ’s quality is apparent on the XL2720Z. The backlight is even across the panel with no bleed, and the contrast is pretty darned fine too.
Gaming on the XL2720Z, as you would expect with a super speedy monitor, is a blast. Both first person shooters and racers are slick and smooth.
Switching on the blur-reduction mode drops the brightness somewhat as it inserts a black frame between each normal frame, but it seemed to match with what I recalled the 2730Z achieved.
Being an NVIDIA graphics card user I did not miss the lack of FreeSync on this monitor so I would rather pocket the cash difference between the XL2720Z and the XL2730Z on that count, thank you very much. The XL2720Z is, however, NVIDIA 3D Vision Ready though.
BenQ XL2720Z review conclusion
The BenQ XL2720Z is an impressive gaming monitor. It packs decent image quality as well as excellent gaming performance thanks to the combination of being loaded with a 144Hz panel, the blur-reduction mode and its 1ms refresh rate.
Some may bemoan the lack of FreeSync – not I – although, I would like to take one of BenQ’s G-Sync monitors for a test run but I think they only have a 24-inch model currently.
If the XL2720Z been equipped with a 2560 x 1440 res panel then it would have been a total killer. As it stands, the XL2720Z is certainly a very capable premium gaming monitor with a host of great features and excellent gaming performance and, because of all that, well worth checking out.
BenQ XL2720Z availability and price
You can grab a BenQ XL2720Z right now for just over £300 at Amazon.co.uk.