A Great Option for a High-Refresh 24.5-inch Display
Currently, the AOC Agon AG251FZ is the only 240 Hz monitor on the market with support for AMD FreeSync technology. In some respects, this makes it the best high-refresh gaming monitor for AMD owners simply by default. In other respects, the AG251FZ is a very solid 24.5-inch offering at an attractive price point.
One of the most refreshing things about the AG251FZ is its design. Having just used the over-the-top Asus ROG PG258Q, the lack of gamer elements in the AG251FZ’s design is welcome, and makes this monitor look much more attractive when sitting on your desk. The wide silver stand with a pillar display mount still makes this monitor reasonably large, however I appreciate its pleasant and understated looks.
The AG251FZ includes a ton of positional flexibility in its stand, thanks to its support for height, tilt, pivot and swivel adjustments. There’s also a load of useful connectivity, including two HDMI ports, a four-port USB hub, and even 3.5mm audio passthrough for your headphones. AOC’s folding headphone stand is also a bonus and complements its well-engineered design.
Most gamers won’t notice a massive difference between 144Hz and 240Hz, with the increased refresh rate providing diminishing returns. However, professional gamers and competitive game enthusiasts with lightning-fast reflexes will benefit from reduced input latency and a more responsive experience, possibly leading to a small competitive edge.
If you don’t fall into the ‘competitive gamer’ category, it’s worth saving your money and opting for much cheaper 144Hz displays, which are almost half the price of brand new 240Hz options.
The AG251FZ’s OSD offers a decent range of functionality, with most features geared towards gamers. The OSD can be difficult to control through the four buttons included on the monitor, however AOC does include a handy though comically-sized external control dongle that makes adjusting this monitor’s settings slightly easier.
Color performance out of the box is respectable though not fantastic, and in general the AG251FZ performs very similarly to the PG258Q. Contrast ratio and viewing angles are weak, as expected for a TN panel, however peak brightness of over 400 nits is decent. Calibrating the monitor through OSD settings leads to small improvements, while using an external calibration tool can lead to very good results with essentially accurate grayscale performance.
The PG258Q does have a slight edge in performance, as the AG251FZ struggles to achieve a correct gamma value of 2.2 whether it’s calibrated or left on default settings.
The main advantage to purchasing the AG251FZ over any G-Sync offering is its price. The PG258Q is a $600 monitor, but the AG251FZ should hit the United States shortly in the $450 to $500 price range. In other territories, AOC’s offering is significantly cheaper than 240Hz G-Sync monitors, and it provides much the same features and functionality. Of course for gamers with Nvidia graphics cards, you might still want to pay for G-Sync, but for anyone who has an AMD GPU or doesn’t care about adaptive sync, the AG251FZ is a great option for a high-refresh 24.5-inch display.
Pros: 240Hz refresh with FreeSync leads to extremely responsive, low latency gaming. Attractive, understated design with a load of connectivity. Cheaper than similar G-Sync offerings.
Cons: Limited improvements over 144Hz displays. Still pricey for a 24.5-inch 1080p display.