The Acer Predator XB323QK NVbmiiphuzx—XB3, for brief—tries to do all of it. Its lovely, quick 4K display screen is a superb match for PlayStation 5 or Xbox Series X. Its sturdy connectivity and options supply loads of help for all types of PC customers. Solid ergonomics, built-in audio system, and HDR all go above and past what we’d name “primary” gaming monitor utility. Trying to be every thing for everybody, although, comes at a excessive price. At $1,200, the XB3 costs itself out of consideration for most individuals—however not all individuals. For the correct of participant, one who each needs exceptional-looking video games and professional-caliber shade, the Predator XB3 could also be well worth the expense. Let’s take a more in-depth look.
What is the Acer Predator XB3?
Even amongst Acer’s premium Predator line, which incorporates most of Acer’s finest displays, the XB3 is pricey. Two of our favourite 4K gaming displays, the Gigabyte M32U and Asus Swift PG32UQ, supply very comparable options for lower than $1,000, so the XB3’s worth invitations some skepticism. It is a powerful show, although, with the colour copy to function a extremely correct monitor for images and design work.
Among Acer’s premium Predator model, the XB3 presents glorious picture high quality, solely outmatched by the huge 37-inch X38 and 43-inch CG7. The XB3 includes a 31.5-inch IPS show operating at 4K decision, 144Hz refresh fee, 1ms response time, and a DisplayHDR 400 ranking. A 32-inch, 4K gaming monitor operating 144Hz is among the many most luxurious core specs you may get, usually costing upwards of $700 (and infrequently extra when paired with distinctive improvements).
Outside of the display screen, the XB3 includes a bevy of premium touches. The chassis is basically metallic, with ample ergonomic adjustability, a sturdy construct, and slim bezels. Built-in are two four-watt audio system that function an amazing backup when headset fatigue begins to set in. On the rear, the XB3 options ample connectivity, together with the most recent HDMI 2.1 and DisplayPort 1.4 ports. HDMI 2.1 is particularly helpful for console players looking for peak efficiency from their PS5 or Xbox Series X.
Setting up the Acer Predator XB3
Fully assembled, the XB3 weighs a hefty 29.7 kilos. That weight makes it extremely sturdy when adjusting ergonomics however troublesome to bodily transfer round.
It’s essential to know what you’re moving into shopping for a monitor this measurement. On my 47 x 30 inch desk, the display screen felt somewhat too near my face, irrespective of the place I positioned the monitor. The stand locations the display screen in entrance of the stand, so that you want a really deep desk to place it effectively. Anyone with a bigger desk shouldn’t have a problem, however tighter setups like mine are a bit difficult to good.
Aside from two USB-A ports on the left-hand aspect, the XB3 includes a wall of downward-facing ports alongside the again of the show, together with HDMI, DisplayPort, USB-C, USB-B, USB-A, and three.5mm audio. Downward-facing ports are a double-edged sword: They scale back pressure in your cables however are a ache to modify out and in. It’s realistically price it for the first video cables—HDMI and DisplayPort—however it could frustrate with ports used for connecting different gadgets, like USB-A and USB-C.
The Acer Predator XB3’s downward-facing rear ports. Harry Rabinowitz
Like most displays, the onboard controls additionally go away one thing to be desired. You use a row of 5 sq., downward-facing buttons on the right-hand aspect of the display screen to navigate and make system-level show changes. The menus are intuitive, however controlling them isn’t, particularly in comparison with displays like Acer’s Predator X34 and X35, which function a four-directional joystick.
Using the Acer Predator XB3
The Predator XB3 is a superbly succesful on a regular basis monitor however it didn’t initially “wow” me with its efficiency. Digging into the settings, I found the XB3’s eight totally different image modes: Standard, Eco, Graphics, HDR, Action, Racing, Sports, and User. Out of the field, Eco is the default, which turns off the XB3’s most spectacular options—issues like HDR, Super Sharpness, visible response increase (VRB), and Overdrive.
The Acer Predator XB3 options eight built-in image settings. HDR provided the very best shade efficiency. Harry Rabinowitz
Out of all of the preset image modes, I discovered that HDR presents the very best image. If you actually need to fine-tune the monitor to your liking, User mode enables you to absolutely customise every setting.
The XB3 has a Vesa DisplayHDR 400 ranking that makes on a regular basis apps pop. Outside of on a regular basis duties, HDR400 isn’t actually sufficient to completely show high-dynamic vary results in video video games. Still, once I confirmed the XB3 to my family and friends who have been used to 1080p and 1440p displays, they have been blown away watching 4K HDR TV reveals and YouTube movies.
The Acer Predator XB3 as a gaming monitor
You don’t purchase the Predator XB3 to work on spreadsheets, although. This is a gaming monitor, and also you’ll solely see what makes its full potential when enjoying video games.
I examined all kinds of PC video games over the XB3’s HDMI 2.1 and DisplayPort 1.4 connections. Few displays supply the latest HDMI 2.1 connectivity—with the ability to play video games in 4K at 144Hz over HDMI, slightly than DisplayPort, was a brand new expertise for me. G-Sync, paired with my Nvidia RTX 3070, ensured buttery easy efficiency in graphically intense titles like Elden Ring, which felt huge on the XB3’s 31.5-inch display screen, with far-off vistas and ugly monsters rendered in gorgeous element. Frenetic motion video games like Hades seemed seamless and felt easy.
Frankly, the XB3 permits a better body fee and determination than most gaming PCs can deal with. Many AAA video games, resembling Elden Ring and Red Dead Redemption II, are capped at 60 frames per second in 4K, and even sustaining that decision and body fee requires a whole lot of horsepower. My system may hit 144Hz in 4K in some well-optimized first-person shooters like Counter-Strike: Global Offensive and indies like Dead Cells that have been simpler on my graphics card. When I may handle it, although, enjoying video games in 4K at 144Hz felt improbable. Fast-moving objects and small particulars have been rendered with unimaginable constancy, a lot in order that I observed new particulars in video games I used to be already acquainted with.
It takes a whole lot of GPU energy to play video games in 4K at 144Hz. My PC may solely deal with it with a number of less-demanding video games like Hades. Harry Rabinowitz
Although I solely examined the XB3 with a PC, it’s additionally significantly well-suited for console gaming. With HDMI 2.1, it’s able to enjoying video games from a PS5 or Xbox Series X in 4K at 144Hz. Many displays solely supply HDMI 2.0, to allow them to solely output one or the opposite from a console. The giant 31.5-inch display screen and built-in audio system enable for a self-contained TV-esque expertise, as effectively.
The Acer Predator XB3 as a inventive monitor
My each day monitor utilization covers all kinds of duties, together with gentle inventive work in Adobe. The XB3 is finest fitted to gaming but in addition provided surprisingly nice shade copy for inventive workflows. Among gaming displays, the XB3 presents very daring shade copy. It has a shade accuracy of Delta E<1, with a base DCI-P3 shade gamut of 90 % and sRGB shade gamut at 135 %. That’s in keeping with comparable premium gaming shows just like the Asus Swift PG32UQ and Gigabyte M32U, in addition to many prime displays for graphic design. Superior shade accuracy isn’t a assure amongst prime gaming displays and, candidly, it typically isn’t mandatory while you’re enjoying video games for enjoyable. If you want skilled shade, although, the XB3 is generally as much as the duty.
So, who can purchase the Acer Predator XB3?
The Acer Predator XB3 is an unimaginable 4K 144Hz gaming monitor that may do a whole lot of issues. It renders video games in superb element, with quick motion captured effortlessly because of a excessive refresh fee and G-Sync compatibility. It’s additionally well-rounded, bringing above-average shade accuracy and pixel density to inventive manufacturing, significantly for a monitor not designed to place shade copy first.
Frankly, Its foremost disadvantage is its worth. Since solely essentially the most highly effective gaming rigs will have the ability to hit its most decision and body fee, the Acer Predator XB3’s $1,199.99 worth could also be a bitter tablet to swallow, even for gamers with high-end techniques. With choices just like the Asus ROG Swift PG32UQ or Samsung Odyssey G70A within the combine, it's an distinctive show that can solely make sense for a really choose group of creatives who love video games.