If ultimate gaming performance is your goal, the best gaming monitors should prioritize refresh rate over pixel density. If you’ve got a lot of graphics processing power, you’ll have no qualms about breaking the 144Hz limit, even on the best 4K gaming monitors (although upcoming models are finally moving past that). Additionally, 240Hz QHD displays can be expensive. The best way to put both speed and value on the desktop is with an FHD display with 240 Hz or higher. By keeping the screen small, the pixel density is high enough to give a clear image without the dot structure of jagged lines.
ViewSonic’s XG2431 is just the thing for gamers looking for a fast monitor that costs less than $350. It’s a 24-inch IPS panel with FHD (1080p) resolution, 240 Hz refresh, Adaptive-Sync, HDR and premium build quality.
View Sonic XG2431 Specifications
|Panel Type / Backlight||IPS / W LED, Random|
|Screen size/aspect ratio||24″ / 16:9|
|Maximum resolution and refresh rate||1920×1080 @ 240 Hz|
|Compatible with G-Sync|
|Original color depth and gamma||8-bit (6-bit+FRC) / sRGB|
|HDR10, ScreenHDR 400|
|Response time (GTG)||1ms|
|Brightness (mfr)||350 nits|
|Video Inputs||1x DisplayPort 1.2″|
|2x HDMI 2.0|
|USB 3.2||1x up, 2x down|
|Energy consumption||17.6 W, brightness @ 200 nits|
|Panel dimensions WxHxD with foot||21.3 x 17.1-20.5 x 9.4 inches (541 x 434-521 x 239mm)|
|Panel thickness:||1.9 inches (48mm)|
|Edge width||Top/sides: 0.2 inch (6 mm)|
|Bottom: 0.7 inches (19mm)|
|Weight||15 pond (6.8 kg)|
Buyers no longer have to settle for a TN panel to respond quickly. Nearly all gaming monitors use IPS panels these days, with the technology’s superior angles, and the XG2431 is a no-brainer. With a claimed GTG response time of 1ms, it can serve the most experienced players, but is low enough to appeal to those on a budget.
Adaptive-Sync comes in both flavors, with AMD FreeSync as the native technology, from 48 to 240 Hz. G-Sync also works, but the XG24 is not yet certified by Nvidia. The full 240 Hz is available via both DisplayPort and HDMI with HDR. It automatically switches to support HDR10 with a peak output of over 500 nits and dynamic contrast that delivers a wide dynamic range. The only thing missing from the image comparison is extended color, but that’s not common with FHD monitors. The XG2431 covers the sRGB gamut completely and is pretty sure out of the box.
Build quality is with all of ViewSonic’s offerings, which includes a solid chassis, wobble-free stand and smooth ergonomics. There are two small rubber guides that flip out of the input panel to keep the mouse and keyboard cables tidy. The only thing missing from the outside of the monitor is a lighting function. But the XG2431 is all about performance, and it delivers in spades. Let’s see.
Mounting and accessories
The XG2431 comes out of its small box in three pieces that are assembled without tools. The package package is much sturdier than the price suggests. Honestly, I’ve never seen anything less from ViewSonic. It always maintain high build quality, the price.
The power supply is internal, so you get an IEC power cord along with cables for DisplayPort and USB. A small plastic ring snaps onto the upright to aid in wire management. And you can route mouse and keyboard cables through the routing guides that pop out of the bottom edge of the panel.
The XG2431 has ViewSonic’s usual no-nonsense styling with a thin recessed bezel of just 6mm around the top and a 19mm strip on the bottom. It is decorated with the ViewSonic logo in the center and a set of OSD control keys on the mount. The power LED is located above a prominent toggle button and glows orange in standby and blue when power is available. The base is finished with a brushed texture to look like metal. It has a metal core but is covered with hard plastic, just like the upright.
The stand includes full 5/15 degree tilt, 90 degree portrait mode, 120mm height range and 90 degree swivel to either side. Movements are firm and smooth, with no extra slack. Integrated into the top of the upright is a handle that makes carrying the XG2431 to a LAN party a breeze.
The side view is suitably thin, with a back panel that curves smoothly from side to side. There are no visual design elements and no lighting function, just a large ViewSonic logo. The photo above shows the handle and cable management ring.
The input panel has two HDMI 2.0 ports and a single DisplayPort 1.2. All support 240 Hz operation with HDR. To use G-Sync, you need to connect to the DisplayPort, FreeSync works with both interfaces. USB is supported up to version 3.2 by one upstream and two downstream ports. Out of the downward-facing roosters are two three-watt speakers that play cleanly at polite volumes in the upper midrange. If you prefer to use a connection, a 3.5 mm connection is available.
The OSD of the XG2431 is controlled by five keys in the place of the joystick that used to be. If, like me, you’re spoiled with joysticks, the buttons are a bit clunky. However, I got used to it for a short time. Fortunately, the power button is positioned higher than the other keys, so I didn’t accidentally turn the monitor off.
The OSD starts with nine picture modes that change color and contrast to varying degrees. The best choice is the default Default Preset. It provides a full calculation, which is not required, but will improve the image quality. I’ll go into that below.
Color Adjust has all image controls, including brightness and contrast. There are five presets for color temperature plus user color, which has RGB sliders. They can be used to track an excellent value to achieve a positive effect on the color gamut. There are no gamma presets that I missed during the testing phase. The XG2431 launches a tad light with quite low contrast. A darker gamma option would be welcome here.
The controls for HDR and Adaptive-Sync can be found in the Settings menu. Also here’s PureXP, ViewSonic’s term for reducing blur through a backlight strobe from ULMB. It works instead of Adaptive-Sync like most monitors with the feature. The good news is that at speeds over 200 fps you can forgo AS and see a very personal view with PureXP. It has five different settings that aim darker towards more blur settings. The Light option works fine, although I noticed a bit of ghosting around vertical lines in test patterns and gameplay. You also specify HDR when PureXP is busy.
The Manual Image Adjustment menu has more image options, including Sharpness, those attractive edge enhancements, and a blue light filter for reading comfort. Black stabilization improvements shadow details at the expense of black levels. Advanced DCR is a dynamic contrast function for SDR signals. It works the contrast but also edge enhancement. DCR is active for HDR signals and does not include edge enhancement for those. The overdrive is a good investment and excellent improvement in sharpness reduction without ghosting at the advanced setting.
ViewSonic XG2431 Calibration Settings
The XG2431 is right on the edge of what is needed/needs no calculations. Grayscale will show a little blue, but most content won’t show the error. The color gamut coverage is very good. Gamma is a tad light and I wished for a darker preset, but it wasn’t there. By tweaking the RGB sliders, I’m scheduling reference-level grayscale and a nice improvement in the gamut. sRGB is the only choice, there is no extensive color reproduction, but that is typical of small FHD screens. These are the settings I used for my measured and practical tests. In HDR mode, all image controls are gray, but the resolution is pretty good with a light blue grayscale and nicely saturated colors. On the next three pages I will show you all the results.
|Brightness 200 nits||46|
|Brightness 120 nits||23|
|Brightness 100 nits||11 (min. 83 nits)|
|User Color Temperature||Red 93, Green 100, Blue 97|
Gaming and hands-on
The XG2431 proved to be a very versatile monitor for everything, whether it be for work or entertainment. Windows apps show good color saturation and fine details. FHD resolution in a 24-inch monitor means no jagged lines pixelation. The dot density is high enough at 92 ppi to keep the image sharp and clean. Small text is easy to read at a normal viewing distance of two to three feet. While the black levels weren’t particularly deep, the contrast in photos and video was good enough to be pleasant to look at and work in Photoshop.
HDR worked fine in Windows from a contrast and color standpoint. The picture was a little brighter but not looking hard. But I could see a bit of edge enhancement that I couldn’t turn off. This didn’t occur in any games I played, just in standard Windows apps like Word and Excel. For things like writing, YouTube or web browsing, I preferred SDR.
HDR is killer for gaming though. my favorite titles, Call of Duty WWII and Eternal doom, looked great, much better than I’d expect for a $300 monitor. The XG2431 redefines what cheap HDR can look like. The dynamic contrast feature is brilliant, especially if your game has HDR tweaks. Both titles have that function. I could see the rich highlights and shadow details with bright whites and deep blacks. HDR literally transforms this monitor. The color was also rich, with fiery red in it disaster and lush greens and blues on the battlefields of Duty.
Resolution was a non-issue for me. It never occurred to me that the XG2431 is FHD, thanks to its small size and high speed. 240 Hz is better than the upper limit of 144 Hz Ultra HD. Ideally, I’d opt for a QHD 240 Hz display as my test setup has a GeForce RX 3090. But if you don’t have an ultra-expensive video card, a 240Hz FHD monitor won’t be able to display ground speeds over 200fps.
Thanks to those high speeds, I was able to give the PureXP blur reduction a good try. More than 200 fps, Adaptive-Sync is not really necessary. I occasionally saw a frame tear, but only because I looked out. The backlit strobe makes movement even more fun. I stuck with the Light setting to keep the photo bright. Higher settings will make it too dark. For competition, I see an experienced player opting for PureXP over Adaptive-Sync. However, I prefer to keep HDR active.
After shooting a lot of slow displays, the most excellent of which are gaming monitors, I’m getting new to the importance of fast suspension speeds. With excellent motion resolution and out-of-this-world control response, it’s hard to go back to even 144 Hz.