We had a little bit of news about this display back in March when we wrote out article about whether 2022 was the year for OLED in the monitor market. We now have some further information about LG’s new UltraGear 48GQ900. This is a 48″ sized display where LG have taken their popular 48″ OLED panel (as featured in the CX, C1 and C2 line-ups for instance) and made it a bit more…well, monitor-like. Gone are some of the TV capabilities and in their place are things like a DisplayPort connection, an anti-reflective screen coating and a more functional and practical stand. Keep in mind this is still a really large sized screen to consider as a desktop monitor, but if you were thinking about the idea or wanted some kind of monitor/TV hybrid then LG have at least attempted to make it a bit more of a cross-over. More information below.
OLED Benefits should be familiar
The main attraction of these screens in the first place is the OLED panel, offering amazing contrast ratios, true blacks, per pixel dimming for excellent HDR and near-instant response times for gaming and fast motion content. You might want to have a read of our reviews of the LG CX (2020 TV model) and more recent LG C2 (2022 line-up) for more information and our testing. Both reviews considered those TV’s as a desktop monitor by the way.
LG UltraGear 48GQ900 Specs
The screen is 48″ in size and offers a 3840 x 2160 “4K” resolution and 16:9 aspect ratio. It has a 0.1ms G2G response time spec and a 120Hz native refresh rate that can also support a small overclock up to an unusual 138Hz. This is supported by adaptive-sync for VRR from both NVIDIA and AMD systems, and the screen carries the AMD ‘FreeSync Premium’ certification as well as the NVIDIA ‘G-sync Compatible’ certification. So far pretty similar to their TV range in specs.
There is a 135 nit typical brightness listed which is presumably for SDR mode and actually quite low for any OLED screen, perhaps a restriction to help mitigate against image retention risks. We would expect there to be no ASBL / TPC dimming feature on this screen given it’s specifically designed for desktop monitor usage, so you don’t have to worry about annoying dimming while using the screen for more static content.
HDR10 support is listed but unlike the LG equivalent TV’s there is no mention of Dolby Vision or HLG support unfortunately. Oddly we cannot see the peak brightness in HDR listed on their Chinese spec page, perhaps this is still being confirmed although we would expect it to be in the 700 – 900 nits range.
The contrast ratio is listed as 1.5 million:1, or LG go as far as to say 1.2 million for a 25% APL in their specs. For all intents and purposes the contrast could be considered “infinite” given the true black capabilities of the OLED panel. One area of potential discussion is that LG are using a “anti-glare and low reflection” coating on this screen, as opposed to the fully glossy coating of the TV’s. This is likely to be similar to the coating we saw and tested recently on the Dell Alienware AW3423DW QD-OLED display and you can read our thoughts and opinion on this in our review.
A wide colour gamut is offered with 99% DCI-P3 listed. The screen also supports a 10-bit colour depth. It comes factory calibrated too and the spec page suggests it will support LG Calibration Studio software for hardware calibration. We expect this would also support Portrait Display’s Calman software like their TV models do.
The screen has 3x HDMI 2.1 and 1x DisplayPort (not listed but we assume 1.4 with DSC) connections, with DP being something you don’t find from OLED TV’s and making the screen more accessible to a wider audience and a wider range of graphics cards. The LG product page specifically mentioned that the HDMI 2.1 ports will support 4K @ 120Hz and with VRR, and given the ports on their TV’s are fully capable of the HDMI 2.1 features, there’s no reason to think LG would limit them or change them here.
There is also an audio / headphone output which is located on the front of the screen for easy access. There are also integrated 20W speakers for some pretty decent audio if needed. The screen is also packaged with a monitor remote control for easy access to a range of settings and features. This is simpler than the normal TV remote provided with their TV range.
The 48GQ900 even features some “Hexagon” RGB lighting which is located on the sides of the display as shown above. The stand is more monitor-like and provides tilt and height adjustments which is good news. We find the TV sets to be quite restrictive in this area. A few gaming extras are included too like a Black Stabilizer setting, crosshair and FPS counter. There are also 2x USB 3.0 ports and an upstream connection so on this model the ports would work like they do on a monitor, as a USB hub as opposed to USB ports on a TV which are used to play files, videos etc only.
Keep in mind that this screen will lack some of the features you get from their TV range like Smart TV apps, a tuner, TV remote control etc.
Pricing and Availability
Pricing has not yet been announced but it will need to be comparable to their TV options to make this realistic we expect. The LG 48GQ900 “will be available starting this month in Japan with key markets in North America, Europe and Asia to follow,” according to LG. More details when we get them.
Update 12/6/22 – The screen is available to pre-order in the UK now exclusively from Overclockers at a price of £1,399.99 (affiliate link).
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