In a bit of a surprising move, Acer last week announced that its 4K HDR Predator X27 gaming display would be delayed to Q1 2018, missing the important holiday sales season. The monitor, based around an NVIDIA reference design for a G-Sync HDR display that was in turn revealed back at CES 2017, has been eagerly anticipated, and until now was expected by the end of this year. Meanwhile, ASUS's ROG Swift PG27UQ, which features virtually the same specifications, has also been delayed to 2018.

The Acer Predator X27 and the ASUS ROG Swift PG27UQ are based on AU Optronics’ M270QAN02.2 AHVA panel, which offers a 3840×2160 resolution and can reach a 144 Hz refresh rate. Combined with a direct LED backlighting system with 384 zones, and monitors based on the M270QAN02.2 panel have been shaping up to be the gaming monitors to get, as they would offer a second-to-none feature set list.

So far, only Acer and ASUS have announced displays based on this panel, with both being fairly straightforward implementations of NVIDIA’s reference design. Neither Acer nor ASUS have disclosed the reason for the delay, but two specific possibilities come to mind: either the reference design needs to be further polished, or mass production of the panel was delayed by AUO. The latter was expected to start volume production of the M270QAN02.2 AHVA panel in July, but it's rare that we ever see public confirmation of panel mass production.

Unfortunately for NVIDIA, this ultimately serves as a de-facto delay for their G-Sync HDR platform, as these displays are the flagship of the line. No other 4K G-Sync HDR displays have been announced, and there are precious few panels set to be released this year that would even meet NVIDIA's needs. Otherwise, in the opposing AMD camp, while none of AMD's partners have announced similar FreeSync displays, any potential products using the AUO panel should be similarly impacted. So FreeSync users looking for a flagship-quality FreeSync 2 HDR display will find themselves waiting into 2018 as well.

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Sources: Acer, PCGamer.

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  • bigboxes - Sunday, August 13, 2017 - link

    Wish in one hand...
  • imaheadcase - Wednesday, August 9, 2017 - link

    What is status on the ASUS ROG Swift PG35VQ? I have the Predator Z35P that uses the custom AU Optronics ar 120Hz. It stated that 200Hz is coming for the PG35VQ with HDR, and quantum dot. This IS this best monitor..but not a peep has been heard about it since June first..despite being "3rd quarter this year".

    I love the Z35P i have..
  • imaheadcase - Wednesday, August 9, 2017 - link

    That is a 4k monitor fyi as well.
  • damianrobertjones - Thursday, August 10, 2017 - link

    "Sales of current monitors are strong so until sales start to fall... Delayed!"
  • geok1ng - Thursday, August 10, 2017 - link

    Freesync 2 HDR is on sale since July with Samsung HG70 line.
  • Dug - Friday, August 18, 2017 - link

    Someone needs to tell these manufacturers that people that can afford these monitors, meaning not kids in grade school, don't like their crappy "gamer" designs.
  • clhodapp - Saturday, December 30, 2017 - link

    It's so true. I suspect that some of it is done as marketing in order to encourage additional sales for their lines further down the pricing spectrum but... come on, at least _offer_ a "professional" monitor that puts the same guts in a different case...
  • melgha - Tuesday, December 26, 2017 - link

    They are delayed so they can include HDMI 2.1, which is going to be a crucial part of the HDR10 world. HDMI 2.0-2.0b supports Static HDR (HDR static metadata), but HDMI 2.1 will support Dynamic HDR (HDR dynamic metadata). Now we are getting a little crazy, because HDMI 2.1 goes beyond bandwidth restrictions. 4K@ ABOVE 60Hz requires displayport for sufficient bandwidth, but displayport will still not support Variable Refresh Rate regardless of bandwidth. HDMI 2.1 will have VRR baked in, which could standardize all this technology and make all this limiting nonsense about having to choose between NVIDIA G-Sync HDR and AMD FreeSync 2 HDR irrelevant. We can just have a single unifying protocol made possible by a new version of HDMI, which all the HDR capable monitors and televisions will share in common--HDMI 2.1. WELCOME TO THE NEW AGE BABAYYYY, I bet we thought we would always be looking to DP for our monitors and HDMI for our TV's, but what if we could just rock HDMI for both with even more benefit?

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