The Acer SB220Q bi is 21.5-inch monitor that fits the bill for value buyers looking for a budget monitor with great color quality for gaming and general productivity. If your professional work doesn’t demand for high color accuracy, this monitor is rightly for you.
- Sleek design
- AMD FreeSync enabled
- Good color quality
- No USB ports
- Middling color and grayscale performance
The Acer SB220Q bi is a 21-inch budget monitor that uses an In-Plane Switching (IPS) to deliver acceptable color accuracy and good gray-scale performance without drawing lots of power. It is equipped with two video inputs and features a sleek bezel-free design, but it lacks USB connectivity and ergonomic adjustments, and it won’t be delivering the same level of detail you get from its high-resolution sibling and our current Editors’ Choice for budget monitors, the ViewSonic VX3276-2K-MHD.
Design – Acer SB220Q bi
The SB220Q bi’s good looks come by way of a bezel-less, black cabinet that’s only a half-inch thick at the thinnest point. Supporting it is a circular base that provides 20 degrees of tilt adjustability, but doesn’t support height, pivot, or swivel adjustment. It also lacks VESA-mount capabilities. The 1,920-by-1,080-resolution IPS panel has a non-reflective coating and a maximum refresh rate of 75Hz.
Along the bottom edge of the panel is a thin strip of glossy-black trim that has six function buttons and a Power switch, and around the back are an HDMI port, a DVI port, a VGA port, and a power adapter input. As with many budget monitors, the SB220Q lacks USB ports and speakers.
Also missing is a DisplayPort input, and the monitor only has basic picture settings that include Brightness, Contrast, and Blue Light adjustments (along with the usual Position, Focus, and Clock) settings. You won’t find any advanced settings at this price, including 6-Axis and Gamma settings, that you get with the ViewSonic VP2771, that even includes USB-C port.
For a monitor this affordable, the Acer SB220Q bi specs are solid, and the monitor’s performance will certainly exceed your expectations on casual gaming and media consumption. The impressive performance is thanks to speedy pixel response and short 4ms refresh rate. It supports AMD Radeon FreeSync meaning you won’t be dealing with noticeable blurring or ghosting on game like Crysis 3 (PC) and Grand Theft Auto V (PS4), provided your laptop/desktop pushes a strong signal.
With a 26ms input lag (the time it takes for the monitor to react to a controller command), the monitor isn’t the fastest around, but midrange gamers will appreciate the kind of performance it offers. After all, this monitor isn’t designed for pro-gaming, its one of those displays you buy as you sharpen your skills, the upgrade to a real gaming monitor like the Acer Predator XB271H, with a better resolution and short 10.2ms input lag.
If you need a budget monitor that can be used for gaming and day-to-day productivity, the Acer SB220Q bi is for you. It comes with enough gaming features, and bonuses like support for AMD FreeSync. Only lack of USB and built-in speakers hold it from being perfect.
It is one of those value monitors that you can use in the office, at home to read your recipes or even entertainment. Also, you can pair it with your gaming rig and you’re off to a good gaming experience. Surprisingly, it comes in at a very reasonable p[rice but delivers great performance.
Is there a better alternative?
There are plenty of budget gaming monitors in the market, but very few support FreeSync or any other graphics accelerator. For gaming, the SB220Q bi is an excellent choice, but if you need more value for professional tasks, the 32-inch ViewSonic VX3276-2K-MHD offers a better 1440p resolution, and all three connectivity options (HDMI, Displayport and Mini Displayport).
Should you buy the Acer SB220Q bi?
Yes. If you’re on a budget and not willing to spend over $300 on a monitor, this Acer SB220Q bi is a good option.
Acer SB220Q bi 21.5" Full HD (1920 x 1080) IPS Ultra-Thin Zero Frame Monitor (HDMI & VGA port)
3 used from $89.99