After seven years, one of my monitors had begun to fail and after some searching, I came across these ASUS monitors. I was hesitant at first because I didn't know anything about ASUS monitors, but the Best Buy rep assured me that unless I was going for super high-end, these would not disappoint. After limping along with one failing monitor, I was able to score these on black Friday at a whopping $179 each, way below my budget.
Many others have noted that the colors are a bit "off" out of the box, but some fine tuning of color controls and you get some stunning picture quality. I myself have also made use of nVidia's control panel to further adjust the colors to something more close to what they should be. ASUS boasts the ability to use these monitors in any position you want, however they are stretching the truth just a bit since these monitors are not IPS. Turning them on their sides in vertical view gives you washed out and inverted colors. It's not terrible, if you're just using Excel or Word, you should be fine, but for someone like me doing graphics work, having any kind of incorrect colors is a bad thing. The quality is both clear and crisp. While not 4K, stepping up from seven year old LED monitors gives me a nice view of how badly everything looks on the internet due to lousy camera phone quality. Low-res video will also seem more pixelated just because everything is just so much clearer.
While not IPS, the screens do have a decent range so you can view them at fairly angled positions. You begin to notice whites turning yellow as you get beyond 35-45 degree angles. Blacks could be a lot more black, they do suffer from some slight washout of the back lights, but only noticeable if you have a black background like me or during system boots.
The monitors support 144Hz refresh rates, but can be adjusted lower, suiting your own personal needs. Currently, with dual monitors, my GTX970 does not support anything higher than 60Hz on a second monitor, regardless if it is plugged into the Display Port or HDMI. The GTX970 doesn't come with two DVI ports, I cannot test if it's the card or the software. However, since my gaming and most movies are shown on my main monitor running 144Hz, this was not a deal breaker. However, the second monitor plugged into the Display Port does give some extra/advanced color and visual options that do not show up in DVI or HDMI under nVidia's control panel. I believe these are if you are running the monitor as a TV.
The 1ms response time is also very nice, my old monitors were 2ms (not bad for seven years old). There is an option to change the amount of "tracing" you get when things move across the screen, I notice on older games like WoW, this affects it in a negative way, so I leave it down on the factory setting of 60. There are other options I haven't even played with yet, there's all sorts of them, I would recommend doing some research on them if you get these.
I have not tested the speakers with these monitors, but other reviews do make mention of them. They are not on the sides or bottom, rather behind the monitor facing left and right. What I am most glad for is not only having the audio in for using the speakers, but you also have an audio out for headphones. I run a Bluray player through HDMI on one monitor with headphones out the other side.
Both my monitors are hanging on a dual arm monitor stand. It's a bit on the cheaper side, but even with these monitors being a bit heftier than what I'm used to, the stand seems to support them just fine. You don't have the bulky power blocks, everything is built into the monitor.
Overall, if you have a chance to get these before they are discontinued, you won't be disappointed. They have very nice feature, nice quality and are easier on the wallet than some other monitors with similar features.