The AOC 25G3ZM brings E-Sports gaming quality at a price that breaks the standard cost of a 240Hz gaming monitor. This kind of product formulation, just like what we saw with the 24G2, increased the brand’s popularity in the global market. Let’s see if the 25G3ZM can break the boundaries with superb performance at a wallet-friendly MSRP.
AOC 25G3ZM Specifications
- Screen Size: 25 Inches
- Resolution: 1920 x 1080 FHD
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Panel Technology: Vertical Alignment (VA)
- Refresh Rate: 240Hz
- Response Time: 1ms
- Contrast Ratio: 3000:1 (Static)
- Brightness: 300 cd/m²
- Built-in Speakers: None
- Stand: Height – Yes
- Stand: Tilt – Yes
- Stand: Swivel – Yes
- Stand: Pivot – Yes
- VESA Compatibility: Yes (100 x 100)
- Connectivity: DisplayPort 1.4 x 1, HDMI 2.0 x 2, 3.5mm Jack x 1
- Dimensions with Stand (W x H x D): 21.94” x 14.88” x 10.19”
- Weight: 9.35 lbs
Design and Features
The AOC 25G3ZM sports a new design that looks sleeker and more premium than the G2 series of monitors. It still has a matte black finish with red accents, but its slimmer lines make it look more modern. The monitor has a three-sided bezel-free design, but it still has inner borders just like any regular monitor.
It is relatively compact by today’s standards, but the monitor requires too much depth due to its stand’s design. The base’s feet are slim so you can still place some stuff in between, but those with shallow tables will not fancy it. The monitor only weighs 9.35 pounds, so it should be portable enough to slip into a bag that’s big enough to hold it.
It’s a budget model, but that did not compromise its build quality and durability that we regularly see on AOC’s products. The plastic panels are thick and sturdy, and there were no signs of cosmetic defects or imperfections. The included stand didn’t wobble or sag, but that’s dependent on a very stable surface as well.
However, the AOC 25G3ZM went backward with its OSD buttons instead of using a quicker and more tactile joystick. The buttons are located at the front on the bottom bezel so they are easy to see, but it still takes more presses to get to a specific setting. We think this is forgivable because of the price, so its not a deal-breaker unless you calibrate your monitor regularly.
The included stand offers tilt, swivel, pivot, and height adjustments for your comfort and convenience. Its handy for situations where you have to use the display for extended periods since it allows you to adjust the monitor and your posture. You can also use VESA mounts, but that only becomes necessary if desk space is limited or if you have multiple screens.
The AOC 25G3ZM is a budget model, so it only has a basic I/O layout that doesn’t include valuable extras. You only get DisplayPort 1.4, two HDMI 2.0 ports, and a 3.5mm jack for headphones. That’s all you will need for a PC and up to two gaming consoles, so it’s acceptable.
You also don’t get speakers with this monitor, but something that’s equipped for competitive gaming always deserves proper headsets. They will help you focus with cleaner and more precise sound, so built-ins won’t get much use anyway.
Display and Performance
The AOC 25G3ZM sports a 25-inch VA panel with a 1920 x 1080 resolution, a 240Hz refresh rate, and a 0.5ms MPRT response time. The backlight has a 300 cd/m2 output, while the contrast is listed at 3000:1, like most VA monitors. This model doesn’t advertise HDR compatibility, but that’s okay since HDR on budget monitors doesn’t mean a whole lot.
24 or 25-inch 1080p monitors still sell like hotcakes since everyone is used to them, and they are still the current standard for competitive gaming. You won’t need a top-end GPU to get to 240Hz, and you won’t need scaling to read letters and numbers. It is also compact by today’s standards, so it’s ideal for LAN parties and competitive gaming events.
The AOC 25G3ZM covers 100% sRGB and 91% of the DCI-P3 color space. That’s not the best we’ve seen, but it is already more than decent for games and movies. The monitor’s default accuracy had a deltaE average of only 1.67. Most users won’t need to calibrate the screen, so it should be good to go once it is out of the box.
Using a colorimeter reduced the dE average to 1.05, making it more ideal for editing or content creation. The downside is that you will need a colorimeter to achieve similar results since each panel has different color outputs. We can only recommend its purchase if you use your monitor for work or business, but it is impractical otherwise.
The AOC 25G3ZM ‘s backlight reached 321 cd/m2 at 100% brightness so it can fight off a decent amount of glare. Its contrast ratio reached 3655:1 at 30% brightness, resulting in a very low black luminance rating. Dark scenes are inky and convincing, unlike the washed-out or grayish night scenes that are common on IPS alternatives.
Panel uniformity for the test sample had some issues due to light leaks at the top edges of the screen. It is not a problem under normal circumstances, but it became noticeable in night scenes. Note that this can change with every monitor made due to manufacturing tolerances, so there are better units out there.
The AOC 25G3ZM’s pixel response times are inaccurate, but it is still faster than some VA monitors due to its 240Hz refresh rate. Some blurring and ghosting can still happen, especially in scenes where something bright streaks through a darker background. Setting the overdrive to its Medium level helped, but we recommend staying with it to avoid overshoot.
The AOC 25G3ZM is compatible with FreeSync and G-Sync, so you don’t have to deal with tearing and stuttering. Having compatibility with both brands means that you will always have VRR functionality even if you switch to the other GPU brand. Its input lag sits close to 3ms at 240Hz, so it is fantastic for competitive play.
Thoughts on the AOC 25G3ZM
The AOC 25G3ZM is a decent choice if you want a high-refresh gaming monitor that sits very close to the $200 mark. Its VA panel offers rich colors and fantastic contrast, so your games and movies will always look good. It is built quite well, so it doesn’t feel like a budget model, even if it lacks a few creature comforts.
The 25G3ZM isn’t perfect, and there is always a limitation somewhere, especially with budget monitors. It looks better with the new design, but there are some minor inconveniences, such as the increase in desk space consumption and the lack of USB slots and an OSD joystick. However, these are minor inconveniences if you consider how cheap it is, so it still is a decent buy.