An Almost Perfect 1440p Gaming Monitor2/1/2020 3:13:54 AM

Pros: -Curved -Huge Monitor -G-sync compatible -Gaming OSD app (not having to use monitor buttons) -Audio Output -Stand extends a great deal, allowing for a wide range of viewing positions. -Pre set up modes -Picture in Picture mode for increased productivity -Mystic Light Compatible -Customizable Navigation buttons on the back of the monitor - The "Eye Saver" is nice for those late nights. -Included HDMI and Displayport cables are a nice bonus.

Cons: Cons -My only real complaint and I'm really stretching here, is the RGB lighting features on the back aren't very bright. I usually work in a well-lit room and I can only notice the lighting when all my lights are off. This isn't a huge issue as too much lighting may affect the visuals of the monitor itself. -After a while of use, I noticed the screen darkening in some situations. After a quick google, I found out that it was because I had "HDCR" turned on which affects the brightness. Disabling HDCR fixed the problem.

Overall Review: (Firstly, to answer questions I've frequently seen disagreement about, this monitor *IS G-SYNC COMPATIBLE*!!!) I decided to upgrade to a 1440p monitor after gaming on a friend's and being blown away in the difference between it and 1080p. I had a few parameters I was looking to meet, and they’re as follows: -The monitor had to be G-Sync compatible, so I could utilize V-Sync -Under $400 -I needed a 1ms response, as I play a lot of First Person Shooters. -This is my only monitor so I wanted it to be LARGE. -Curved. -144hz refresh rate. Let me tell you, I knew I was getting a 32" monitor but when I pulled it out of the box, I realized how large the screen was. It's the perfect size for my desk. In fact, it's so large, I'm considering using it as the monitor for my console gaming as well. NVIDIA doesn't officially recognize it as G-SYNC ready, however, it is still "G-SYNC Compatible", which means you still get to experience G-SYNC essentially. I was worried that it would be difficult for the NVIDIA control panel to recognize it as G-SYNC compatible, however, as soon as I turned on "Freesync" on the monitor, the control panel recognized it as compatible. One of the cooler features of this monitor is that you don't have to fiddle around with the buttons on it to change the settings. There is software that is available on MSI's website (Gaming OSD) that allows you to control all the settings for the monitor via a program on your computer. This feature is invaluable as you don't have to work your way through a clunky interface that might not be very intuitive, such as menu buttons on the monitor itself and whatnot. I was blown away when I first loaded up some games to test the monitor out. From the Witcher 3 to GTA V to Fortnite, all games look amazing with the extra screen space allowed by 1440p. You don't realize how useful it is until you experience it first hand. I found myself not having to constantly move the mouse around to get a better view of my surroundings. There are pre-programmed modes like FPS, Racing, and Designer. Most of them have their uses but you can also copy a preset and slightly tweak any setting you want and save it to perfectly tailor the visuals to what you want, but I found myself mostly using the presets. One feature that I didn't expect to get so much use out of was the Picture in Picture features which allows the screen to display multiple apps at once in different windows, but also can display visuals from completely separate video inputs. This is another one of those features that you might not be able to see yourself using until you actually try it out and see what it can offer. Even though this is my only monitor, I was able to have multiple different apps displayed at once, a really positive for anyone planning on multitasking or general productivity functions. The stand is very useful in that it extends a great deal out from is original position. Sometimes, during long gaming or work sessions, I have to change the height of my chair due to neck or back pain and the stand helps the monitor stay in the perfect viewing position. It also has a little hole in the middle for cables to be run though, so it helps with desk cable management as well. Another feature that helps with cable management is the 3.5mm audio out. Instead of my soundbar needing to have cables all the way to the computer, I have a shorter audio cable that just connects to the back of this monitor, reducing cable clutter. This monitor also is compatible with MSI proprietary RGB syncing (Mystic Light). I have an MSI motherboard with an addressable RGB header that I use to control the color of my CPU liquid cooler's fans, my RAM, and the motherboard itself and with this monitor being Mystic Light compatible, its RGB lights sync with all of the other RGB enables components in my build. Overall, I'm incredibly happy with my purchase. I've had many MSI products over the years and have generally been pleased with all of them. MSI products seem to always be a little cheaper than their competitors in price, while still offering the same features and specs that are important to your everyday PC gaming enthusiast. I would HIGHLY recommend this monitor to anyone considering it as it sits in that sweet spot of affordable price, without sacrificing quality.

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Manufacturer Response:
Dear Nick, Thank you for sharing your experience with the MSI Optix MAG321CQR monitor! If you ever require technical assistance, please feel free to contact our technical support department directly at 888.447.6564 from M to F, 5am to 4am Pacific Standard Time. Thanks for choosing MSI! Best Regards, MSI Review Team