LG OLED technology has been the benchmark for modern displays for quite some time now. Everything, from smartphones to tablets, laptops, and TVs, prominently features these advanced panels as a USP, primarily due to their fantastic picture quality and exceptional contrast levels. Even though these panels are a bit more expensive than traditional LCDs and have the potential for burn-in, people are still happy to adopt this technology as long as they get the best viewing experience possible.
One category that has strongly resisted this slow conversion to OLED has been gaming monitors. While most other electronic device categories had no problem making the change, gaming monitors still stuck to LCDs, owing to the higher refresh rate benefits that gamers seem to covet. Initial generations of OLED displays couldn’t offer the same advantage, so it made sense to rely on LCDs, as they were both cheaper and faster. However, that advantage won’t last much longer, as modern OLED panels can offer high-refresh rates and VRR too. In fact, LG just showcased this very combination with the launch of their UltraGear 48GQ900 gaming monitor.
As the name suggests, this series features the top-tier of LG offerings, with a vibrant and colourful 47.5-inch 4K resolution OLED display, which features 98.5% DCI-P3 colour coverage and comes with HDR10 support. This enables a 1.5M: 1 contrast ratio for outstanding black levels and true-to-life colour reproduction.
But the real highlight is the high-refresh rate, which maintains 120Hz output by default and can even be overclocked to 138Hz for peak performance. This speed is also reflected in the input, as the display comes with a blistering 0.1ms grey-to-grey response time, which is impressive for a 4K OLED panel. To help avoid screen tearing, the model is compatible with G-Sync and AMD FreeSync Premium; and supports frame rate compensation, which allows the display to repeat frames if the frame rate falls below the lowest refresh rate.
In addition to the technology within the panel itself, the monitor also features some additional tweaks for customer comfort. For example, you get the advantage of LG’s proprietary anti-glare, low-reflection coating that helps reduce visual distractions, even in brightly lit rooms. Further, the display itself lowers the brightness in areas that feature large white empty spaces, like websites, to prevent potential burn-in.
In fact, if you want to specifically black out some regions of the screen to emulate various display sizes, you can access the dedicated ultra-wide mode, which can turn the default 16:9 output into 21:9 or even 32:9 aspect ratios for a truly ultra-wide experience. The fact that you can get this level of performance in a display that is less than 4mm thick is truly a testament to LG’s manufacturing prowess.
Build Quality & Connectivity
Since the panel itself is so slim, the rest of the body follows a similar profile. Yet, LG still somehow found the space to fix a pair of 20 W speakers to handle the sound output. If that isn’t enough for you, you can easily connect your gaming headsets, thanks to a handy 3.5mm jack located on the front of the stand, which is a unique offering in a gaming monitor, considering it also supports DTS Headphone: X.
The rest of the IO is in the back, with 3 HDMI 2.1 ports, a DisplayPort 1.4, an Optical Digital Audio Out port, 1 USB-A 3.0 upstream port, and 2 downstream ports. This is more than enough connectivity for most people looking to buy a gaming monitor, although you do miss out on other stuff like Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and Android TV, which most modern OLED TVs feature by default these days.
All of this is stuffed inside a highly slim and sleek body, which also manages to include two RGB lights on either side for a genuinely colourful gaming experience. The whole thing balances on a minute stand, despite the size of the display itself. Unfortunately, the stand offers no adjustability options, which may not be such a bad thing considering the monitor’s weight and dimensions. Despite the petite design, the performance is still exceptional, and so is the power consumption, which averages 175W but can go as high as 222W if you push it hard enough. This whole setup will cost you around $1,499.99, which is a lot to pay for a gaming monitor. But, considering everything on offer, it might just be a good deal for many gamers looking to upgrade to the OLED experience.