BenQ Zowie XL2540 Review
Review of BenQ Zowie XL2540
Since the rise in popularity of E-sports, peripheral brands have raced to provide both the professional and mainstream users with cutting-edge equipment that has features which aim to provide every advantage in the heat of battle. One such product is the gaming monitor. BenQ, a well-known screen manufacturer, has acquired Zowie, a popular gaming brand and together they are producing outstanding products such as their XL line of monitors meant for PC competitors and gamers. Their latest product, the XL2540 carries some of the best features we have seen in the market today. It’s a 24.5-inch gaming monitor with an astonishing 240hz native refresh rate and a lot more. Check out this review to find out everything about this beast.
Screen Size: 24.5 inches
Resolution: 1080p 1920 x 1080
Aspect Ratio: 16:9
Panel Technology: Twisted Nematic Film (TN)
Refresh Rate: 240Hz
Response Time (Gray to Gray): 1 milliseconds
Contrast Ratio: 1000:1 / 12000000:1 (dynamic)
Brightness: 400 cd/m²
Built-In Speakers: No
Stand: Height: Yes (5.5 inches)
Stand: Tilt: Yes -5°/+20°
Stand: Swivel: Yes 45°/45°
VESA Compatibility: Yes (100×100)
Connectivity: DVI-DL, HDMI x 2, DisplayPort, Headphone jack, Microphone jack-Weight: 24.25lbs
Dimensions: With stand: 17.55” (+2.74”) x 22.43” x 8.9″
Power Consumption: 55 watts ( Energy Star qualified)
Design and features
The BenQ Zowie XL2540’s cabinet has a matt-black, non-reflective finish which makes it look sexy but discrete. The specially-designed bezel helps to avoid reflections on the edges of the screen while being thin enough not to cause distractions. There are five OSD buttons and the power button located on the lower right-hand side. The bezel also holds plastic flaps called shields, a design feature unique to BenQ which blocks distractions from the side. The shields are also nonreflective, and BenQ claims that this function helps the user to focus harder on the game. Some may find it weird, but since the product’s design is for a highly specified use, they are a welcome addition or option for the whole package.
Another feature we like about the XL2450 is its unique stand. The best thing about this function is its ability to be adjusted with just a lift of a finger. The monitor can rise for an additional 2.74 inches, and it can swivel and tilt with ease giving the user a convenient way to adjust the screen for the best viewing angle. The mechanism is also marked by red lines at the right side so the user can quickly estimate the height adjustment with just one look. The neck of the stand has a circular hole in the middle for easy and no fuss cable management. In our opinion, the XL series stand is one of the best looking in the current market regarding function and aesthetics.
The XL2540 offers an excellent range of connections to help justify its price tag. It has two HDMI ports, a DisplayPort 1.2, and a DVI-DL for input options and additional ports for a microphone and a headphone. It also has four USB ports, 3 for upstream and one for downstream. You will find two USB ports on the left side of the shell of the cabinet together with the audio ports and the headset hanger that pops out when it is needed. Most of the ports’ location is under the rear shell, so cables can go through the hole and connect neatly to the monitor.
Finally, the XL2540 comes with a unique accessory in the form of a puck-shaped remote control. The S Switch as BenQ calls it, is designed for easy access to the monitor’s settings. You can switch between saved modes and the provided input options, or you can use it to navigate the built-in OSD. It has a scroll wheel, a back button, an input selector, and a 1-3 button for presets. This gadget is an excellent add-on since navigating the OSD with just the regular buttons can be troublesome. The base has a dish to accommodate the S Switch and hold it in place, so it doesn’t clutter your desktop. In our opinion, this is a smart design with convenience in mind for the users.
Display Features and Performance
The has five buttons located on the underside of the bezel at the lower right-hand corner beside the power button. From here you can adjust the monitor’s various settings from contrast to brightness. Just like every cutting-edge product, tweaking the settings is highly recommended. The XL2540’s OSD also carries the distinct features of the BenQ Zowie XL line. From the game settings, you can select Blur Reduction, Color Vibrance, a Low Bluelight Filter, and of course, the Black Equalizer feature. The Picture menu carries the different image modes; two for FPS and one for RTS games, the three custom presets, a movie preset and the default preset. From this submenu, you can also adjust the standard settings such as contrast and brightness. After tweaking to your desired setting, you can save up to three profiles in the built-in memory and access them on the fly via the S switch’s 1-3 buttons.
The BenQ Zowie XL2540’s screen is a Twisted nematic film (TN) panel. It still comes with the downsides of this screen type, but what’s interesting about this model is its 240hz refresh rate. There is only one other monitor out in stores that can do this, the Asus PG258Q. This capability promises consistent fluid motion at all times while in the middle of the action. The one downside to this aside from the price premium is that you need to have a solid gaming rig that can run your desired games at high frame rates to benefit from such a high speed. BenQ is even kind enough to add that bit of information on one of the headings in the XL2540 page. Together with the great settings and presets built into the product, we can safely to say that the gaming experience will enhance beyond what other gaming monitors with inferior capabilities can offer.
Despite the gaming pedigree, the XL2540 does not carry a G-Sync (Nvidia) or Freesync (AMD) feature commonly found in similarly categorized monitors. The specs say that this product only has Adaptive Sync which can activate by using the DisplayPort as your input option. Currently, only AMD and Intel IGPs support this picture. Lastly, the monitor is capable of a blazing 400 nits of brightness. You can turn this down or up in the OSD if your preferred presets doesn’t (adjusting Blur Reduction lowers the brightness).
The BenQ Zowie XL2540’s amazing specs and beautiful design makes it a top choice among gaming monitors. The 240hz refresh rate will make it a snappy monitor for E-Sports FPS games such as Overwatch and CS: GO. The added physical and OSD features make a versatile product that suits the different tastes gamers often have and use to their advantage. The only real downside to having a 240hz refresh rate is that you have to have a PC capable of such high frame rates. So far, most gaming rigs can produce around 150FPS at the most except for an exceptional few. That is a point you need to consider thoroughly before getting the XL2540.