The Bottom Line
Jul 7 2011 - Acer recently introduced the HN274H monitor, a 27-inch display with 3D capability. After testing this monitor hands on, I found the Acer HN274H to be an excellent performer in both 2D and 3D games. Although the HN274H is expensive at $689 MSRP, it is an excellent value when you consider the size and option for 3D gaming and multimedia. And while the viewing angles cannot compete with an IPS model, the Acer HN274H is a top buy for gaming enthusiasts.
- Full HD Resolution with HDMI 3D
- Built-In IR Emitter For 3D Glasses
- Energy Efficient
- Slow at Waking From Sleep
- Viewing Angles Aren't as Good as an IPS Panel
- 1920 x 1080 Maximum Resolution
- 120 Hz Refresh Rate
- 2ms Maximum Response Time
- 16.7 Million Colors
- 100000000:1 Dynamic Contrast Ratio
- 16:9 Aspect Ratio
- 300 Nit Brightness
- 170 Degree Horizontal Viewing Angle
- 160 Degree Vertical Viewing Angle
- NVIDIA 3D Glasses
- DVI, HDMI, VGA Ports
- Built-in Speakers
Review - Acer HN274H 27 Inch LED Backlit Full HD 3D Monitor
Acer recently unveiled what it claims to be the first full HD 27 inch HN274H 3D display. Previously, 3D monitors were available in 23 inch and 24 inch sizes, so the HN274H is a special treat for those looking for a larger screen. Fortunately, I was able to test this device hands-on to see if it's worth the $700 price tag. After unboxing the Acer HN274H, it's super easy to get up and running within minutes as you simply need to screw the screen onto the base. The glossy black bezel is sleek, and the base itself is silver and black, with is a departure from Acer's previous generation GD235HZ 23.6 inch monitor. Unfortunately, the HN274H doesn't offer an adjustable height stand, which is quite disappointing considering the Acer HN274H is an expensive piece of equipment.
In addition to the HN274H's large screen size, the Acer HN274H features 1920x1080 resolution and, of course, a 120Hz refresh rate typical of 3D displays. The HN274H also ships with NVIDIA active shutter glasses. And a new improvement is the fact that the NVIDIA 3D Vision IR emitter is built-in. This means there are no extra receivers to connect. The result is a smooth experience for 3D gaming.
Once the monitor is powered on, it's easy to like the Acer HN274H. Not only is the screen nice and big, but colors appear accurate without a ton of calibration. I also found that the display can be configured easily to allow for brightness tweaks for gaming, movies, etc. Speaking of settings, the touchscreen circles on the lower right hand of the display allow you to access the service menu, change inputs, and adjust the volume for the built-in speakers. Although the speakers won't replace a nice set of external satellite speakers with a subwoofer, the built-ins are sufficient for listening to music and gaming casually with a decent max volume.
But obviously, the Acer HN274H excels in great image quality for gaming. The monitor supports HDMI 1.4 3D for an enhanced gaming experience with the ability to connect compatible peripherals for an all-around great 3D multimedia experience. In many ways, the Acer HN274H is more comparable to a 3D HDTV rather than other monitors on the market. Yes, IPS panels have much better viewing angles but this display is geared for 3D enthusiasts. Of course, you can get a 24 inch 3D monitor much cheaper, but gaming is so much more fun on the 27 inch screen. And you no longer have to sacrifice low resolutions for 3D capability. The full HD 1080p resolution is nice and crisp. Energy consumption also is getting better on these larger displays. The monitor uses approximately 45.5 watts during operation and 1.7 watts in standby.
After testing the Acer HN274H in many NVIDIA 3D Vision Ready games, I found the monitor performed really well. Dungeon Siege III, a recently released 3D compatible game, looked gorgeous on the test setup, which included an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 580 1.5GB graphics card. Other games, such as World of Warcraft and Battlefied: Bad Company 2, also faired very well in 3D mode with no ghosting issues. And even running games in 2D mode, such as Portal 2, were equally pleasant with rich color.
In summary, the Acer HN274H is a great buy due to its size and HDMI 1.4 3D capability. You are definitely paying for the ability to play and watch movies in 3D, so if 3D gaming isn't your thing there are better alternatives. But for those looking for a rich multimedia and PC gaming experience, the Acer HN274H 27 inch monitor is a good value.