Towards the end of last year AOC made a change to their popular 23.8″ 24G2U gaming display and switched to the use of a different panel. We had reviewed the 24G2U as part of last year’s budget gaming monitor article, and were impressed by its performance and capabilities. It’s become one of the most popular low-cost gaming monitors in this size range and recommended by many different reviewers. Later in August 2020 some users started to notice that the panel in their screen was not the same as that in the review units, with AOC seemingly having switched from using a panel from lesser-known manufacturer Panda as featured in the numerous reviews online, to one from BOE instead.
The question then became – does this impact what reviewers have said about the screen? Does the new panel make a major difference to the performance, or change whether the screen is still recommended as a great budget gaming monitor?
Hardware Unboxed managed to get hold of both the old and new versions of the screen and their review video linked below from March 2021 has a great comparison between both panel versions. This also includes details on how to tell the two versions apart and measurements of both panels.
We had been talking to AOC about this change as well and considering the same kind of thing, looking at the new BOE panel version and comparing it to the original Panda panel version in an updated review.
However we have today received an update and statement from AOC that is included below, but as a TL;DR summary they have since discontinued use of the BOE panel and returned to using only the Panda panel for this screen. This seems to be a good idea given the widespread coverage of the Panda panel in reviews and the fact it was a solid performer as well. It’s a shame there was this confusion in the first place and we’re not really fans of manufacturers switching key components like this unannounced, especially when it’s the exact same monitor model. Obviously as the statement says, sometimes this is necessary and to be fair most of the time the panels are so similar that most people would never know or notice the difference – it’s not like they’ve switched from an IPS-type panel to TN Film or something drastic. However, we do applaud their transparency now with this statement and commitment to being clearer in the future.
AOC’s statement is below
“The display specialist AOC recently changed the panel in their highly appreciated gaming monitors 24G2U, 24G2AE, and 24G2. This is an official statement by AOC International Europe B.V. to address the recent questions that arose around this matter.
AOC honours being transparent to our customers and our community. We are proud to be able to deliver the best products on the market for the best accessible price, which customers appreciate and made our brand the first choice in the gaming sector. We highly thank all our community for this.
In 2020, like many other industries the computer monitor industry also experienced shortages, mainly from panel manufacturers. We’re also aware of the frustration of the customers caused by lack of product availability and price hikes in hardware, particularly for GPUs and CPUs from some key hardware manufacturers, but also other peripherals including monitors.
In the computer monitor industry, it is a common practice to search for different panel sources and work with different panel manufacturers. This is also true for our brand, if the panels meet AOC’s very high quality standards.
In the case of the 24G2 models, AOC decided to add a second panel source into the model 24G2 in order to keep the continuity of model supply. This additional panel source was introduced in August 2020.
Both panels are sharing very similar specifications and viewing experience. It was our intention to keep the key points that gamers appreciate this monitor for (high refresh rate, low response time, wide viewing angles and wide colour gamut coverage thanks to the IPS panel) and keep the availability of these products in Europe. After recognising the confusion on the side of customers this second panel with slightly different characteristics has caused, we decided to discontinue the new panel source and only maintain the production of monitors with the initial panel.
We would like to apologise to our community and our customers due to any confusion caused by these two panel variants and for those who felt misled or even misinformed. AOC always strives to provide the best technology and quality at all times and with all decisions, we always prioritize the needs and wishes of our customers. We will continue to improve our practices and communications on necessary changes in panels whenever they go along with measurable changes in performance.
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