I recently went hands-on with some of the latest gaming hardware from BenQ at a festive preview event in London, England. Situated in the basement of an Art Deco hotel in the city’s historic Soho area, the gilded archways and elaborate decorative wallpaper made for a surprisingly chic choice of locale for a peek at some of the manufacturer's current gaming product lineup.
Despite the pleasant surroundings and the copious amounts of champagne being served even though the event was at 11am, I wasn’t really able get into the holiday spirit until I was shuffled into a small room filled with monitors and projectors to test them out for myself. The first thing to really catch my attention here was one of the more bizarre lighting features of one of the monitors on show. A 27-inch gaming display with a 1440p 240Hz IPS panel, the Mobiuz EX270QM packs some serious specs and quite a sleek design that really helps it stand out from the crowd.
The abundance of smooth white panels lend its rear an almost futuristic look, an effect that is only further reinforced by four strips of RGB lighting. The illumination is bright and quite noticeable when it is enabled, toggled through a settings menu with a number of preset lighting options to choose from. These range from your standard rainbow and pulsing patterns to, far more interestingly, the strange ability to transmit messages like “SOS” in a Morse code using the lights.
There’s something mildly amusing about the concept of using your monitor’s lighting to communicate. Although it's obviously wildly impractical, if your performance in high-skill first-person shooter (FPS) games like Counter-Strike 2 is anything like mine, then you might at least appreciate having the option to subtly cry for help every now and again.
While the room was slightly too busy to fully judge the audio quality on the display, the integrated speakers were also a standout highlight. They sounded surprisingly punchy to my ears and a considerable step up from the standard tinny set found on most gaming monitors, potentially making this the perfect all-in-one solution for those who don't want to splash out on separate speakers.
Elsewhere, there was plenty to appreciate in the stunning 4K image quality of the company's new supremely pricey X3100i gaming projector, which unfortunately seemed to do very little to prevent me from being embarrassingly ranked 58th in a cheeky match of Fortnite. The buttery smooth 360Hz refresh rate of the Zowie XL2566K monitor, which is primarily geared towards esports, was also impressive and seems ideal for competitive use.
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Dash is TechRadar Gaming's Hardware Writer. Before joining TechRadar, he was a print journalist writing articles for some of the UK's biggest gaming magazines including PLAY, Edge, PC Gamer, and SFX. Now, when he's not getting his greasy little mitts on the newest hardware or gaming gadget, he can be found feverishly devouring the latest Nintendo Switch otome.