KTC H27T22 Review: 1440p 165Hz 1ms FreeSync IPS Gaming Monitor

The KTC H27T22 is a 27" 1440p 165Hz IPS gaming monitor with a fast 1ms GtG response time, wide color gamut, ergonomic stand, MBR, VRR and more!

Bottom Line

The KTC H27T22 is an excellent gaming monitor for the money thanks to its fully adjsutable stand, plethora of features and 1440p IPS panel with a wide color gamut, high peak brightness, quick response time and smooth VRR performance.

Design:
(5.0)
Display:
(4.6)
Performance:
(4.7)
Price/Value:
(4.5)
4.7

27″ 1440p high refresh rate IPS gaming monitors are still among the most popular form factors – let’s see how the KTC H27T22 compares to its alternatives.

Even though KTC (Key To Combat) is a new gaming monitor brand, the company has been an OEM manufacturer for many other monitor brands, such as Samsung, ViewSonic and NEC, so we’re expecting well-optimized displays!

Image Quality

Something that we’d like to see all monitor brands pick up from KTC is specifying the exact panel being used in the monitor! On the KTC H27T22 product page, you can clearly see that it’s using AUO’s M270DAN08.2 IPS-type panel with a fast 1ms GtG response time, 178° wide viewing angles, a 350-nit peak brightness and a 1,000:1 static contrast ratio.

First, let’s see how the monitor performs out of the box with its default settings, and if there are any tweaks we can make to improve it.

We’re using the Datacolor SpyderX Pro paired with DisplayCAL and HCFR software for our testing, calibration and profiling. The testing was done after the monitor had warmed up and we disabled all eco/power-saving features. The monitor firmware version is v1.2.3.

KTC H27T22 and Datacolor SpyderX Pro

The KTC H27T22 has seven picture presets: User (Default), Standard, Movie, Photo, RTS, FPS1 and FPS2. However, all presets except for the User mode have fixed brightness, contrast and Black Equalizer settings. So, we recommend sticking with the user mode.

Here’s how the monitor performs out of the box:

KTC H27T22 out of the box
Image accuracy out of the box

Note that we changed the color temperature from the default Warm mode with a bluish 7493K tint to User, which brought it down to 6354K, much closer to the 6500K target.

Gamma is a bit high when it comes to dark shades, meaning that shadow details will be too dark. This is with the default Gamma 2.2. Changing it to a lower gamma or using Black Equalize can improve the tracking of dark shades, but it will make lighter shades too bright.

Therefore, we recommend sticking with the Gamma 2.2 mode and optionally increasing Black Equalize to ~53 to improve the visibility of objects in the dark.

The average Delta E is 2.82 (target is ≤ 1.5), while the maximum is 7.3 (target is ≤ 3). However, this is mainly due to the monitor’s wide color gamut, which causes over-saturation when viewing sRGB content.

Color Accuracy Chart April 2024
Color Gamut Chart April 2024

Most users will prefer the extra color vibrancy anyway, but there is no sRGB clamp that would restrict its native 141.5% sRGB gamut volume down to ~100%. The sRGB color temperature option (we measured 6922K) doesn’t affect the color gamut at all.

KTC H27T22 Color Gamut

Using the AMD Custom Color option, or the novideo_srgb tool if you have an NVIDIA GPU, was too aggressive as it clamped the gamut down to 87% sRGB coverage.

Moving on, after full calibration, we managed to reduce the average Delta E down to 0.45 and the maximum down to 1.77. Gamma tracks the sRGB tone curve accurately and we reduced the red gain to 48, blue to 49 and left green at 50 to get a 6529K color temperature.

KTC H27T22 After calibration
KTC H27T22 after calibration

You can download our ICC profile here to get more accurate colors in color-managed applications. In case you have a GeForce GPU, you can use our ICC profile with the novideo_srgb tool for better sRGB emulation mode (99.5% coverage, 107% volume) in all applications.

Next, we measured an exceptional peak brightness of 488-nits, well above the specified 350-nit value. The minimum brightness was 45-nits and we measured a contrast ratio of 1247:1 at 200-nits, which is very good for an IPS panel.

Max and Min Brightness Chart April 2024
Contrast Ratio Chart April 2024

However, blacks will still appear somewhat grayish in comparison to VA monitors, which have a higher contrast ratio (usually ~3,000:1), but suffer from other drawbacks, including narrower viewing angles and slower response time at this price range.

Related:IPS vs TN vs VA – Which Panel Type Should I Choose?

We didn’t find any excessive backlight bleeding or IPS glow and there was no image retention or pixel inversion artifacts. There is one dead pixel in the top left part of the screen, but it’s not noticeable during everyday use.

KTC H27T22 Quality Control

When it comes to image brightness uniformity, the left part of the screen is a bit darker (up to 27-nits), but we didn’t find this to be noticeable during normal use.

KTC H27T22 Image Uniformity
KTC H27T22 Brightness Uniformity

Lastly, the 2560×1440 QHD resolution suits the 27″ sized screen of the monitor very well as you get a high pixel density of 108.79 PPI (pixels per inch). As a result, the details and text are sharp, and there’s plenty of screen space available, while the resolution is not nearly as demanding on the GPU as 4K UHD.

HDR

The KTC H27T22 monitor also supports HDR (High Dynamic Range). Now, it doesn’t have a full-array local dimming (FALD) solution, which is essential for a proper HDR viewing experience on LED-backlit displays.

Still, thanks to the monitor’s wide color gamut and decent peak brightness (we measured 480-nits regardless of the window size), some HDR content may look better than SDR to you.

Maximum HDR Brightness Chart April 2024

However, keep in mind that the colors will be over-saturated and brightness higher than intended (in the second image above, the yellow line should track the gray line), which leads to over-exposure of bright highlights and loss of details.

The color temperature was fairly accurate at 6400K, but since there’s no local dimming, the contrast remains at ~1,000:1. Overall, you won’t get a true HDR experience, as expected at this price range, but some users might prefer the extra punch over SDR even though it strays away from the creator’s intent.

For a true HDR monitor, you’ll need to spend at least $500 for something like the Cooler Master Tempest GP27Q or the KTC M27T20 with 576-zone mini LED FALD.

Performance

KTC H27T22 and OSRTT

For pixel response time speed and input lag testing, we’re using OSRTT. We’re also using Blur Buster’s UFO ghosting test with 960 Pixels Per Sec, shutter speed set to 1/4 of the refresh rate with fixed focus, ISO and color temperature (6500K). Before the tests, the monitor was calibrated and warmed up.

The KTC H27T22 monitor has four response time overdrive modes: Off, Low, Middle and High.

Both High and Middle can introduce pixel overshoot (inverse ghosting), so we recommend sticking with the Low overdrive mode for optimal performance across the entire refresh rate range.

If you’re gaming at 60Hz (or mainly around 60FPS when using variable refresh rate), you might want to dial the overdrive back to Off to avoid overshoot.

At 165Hz, you get an average response time of 4.53ms with low 6.8% overshoot and 80% pixel transitions making it within the refresh window, which is an excellent result without any noticeable ghosting in fast-paced games.

Response Time Speed Chart April 2024
VRR Response Time Speed Chart April 2024

Here’s how the different overdrive modes look in the Blur Buster’s UFO ghosting test:

In the image below, you can see how the KTC H27T22 compares to the BenQ XL2566K with a 360Hz TN panel, the ASUS PG27AQDM with a 240Hz OLED display and the Gigabyte M32QC with a slower VA panel.

KTC Gaming Monitors UFO Comparison

Next, the KTC H27T22 supports variable refresh rate via AMD FreeSync Premium and NVIDIA G-SYNC Compatible with a 48-165Hz dynamic range.

We didn’t encounter any VRR brightness flickering or other issues, which allows for flawless tear-free gameplay up to 165FPS. For NVIDIA GPUs, VRR is supported over DisplayPort (GTX 10-series or newer), whereas AMD FreeSync works over both HDMI and DP.

Alternatively, you can enable MPRT, which uses backlight strobing to reduce perceived motion blur at the cost of picture brightness (reduced to ~150-nits while active).

MBR Brightness Chart April 2024

Further, MPRT can’t be active at the same time as VRR, and it introduces screen flickering that’s invisible to the human eye, but can cause headaches after prolonged use to those sensitive to flicker.

On this monitor, MPRT can be enabled at a fixed refresh rate of 120Hz or higher, though you can also create a custom resolution for 85Hz and 100Hz.

KTC H27T22 UFO Test MBR

Next, we measured low display latency of only 3.71ms at 165Hz, 5.07ms at 120Hz and 8.94ms at 60Hz, meaning that there’s no perceptible delay between your actions and the result on the screen.

Maximum Refresh Rate Display Lag Chart April 2024
120Hz Display Lag Chart April 2024
60Hz Display Lag Chart April 2024

Finally, the backlight of the monitor is flicker-free (unless MPRT is enabled) and there’s a low blue light filter (adjustable from 0 to 100, in increments of 25).

Features

At the rear of the monitor on the right side, there’s a directional joystick for quick and easy navigation through the OSD (On-Screen Display) menu – apart from the power consumption warning message that occurs every time you want to change brightness or picture mode.

If you’re changing monitor brightness often, the monitor does support DDC/CI, so you can use third-party applications, such as ClickMonitorDDC to change the brightness using your keyboard and mouse.

Pressing the joystick to the left (Game Assist), down (Brightness), right (Presets) and up (input source selection) while not in the menu opens up the shortcuts for the mentioned settings.

Besides the standard image adjustments (brightness, contrast and color temperature), you also get some advanced settings, including sharpness, aspect ratio (full, 16:9 and 4:3), five gamma presets and hue/saturation.

Other features include Black Equalize (improves visibility in dark scenes by altering the gamma curvature), DCR (dynamic contrast ratio), audio, OSD settings (position, timeout and transparency) and three User profiles to save/load your settings.

Auto Input Source is not available (you’ll have to manually select the input source), but the monitor has updatable firmware via its USB port.

There are also two RGB LED strips (cycling between red, green, blue, cyan, magenta and yellow, no customization available) at the rear of the monitor. The LEDs aren’t strong enough to reflect off of the wall to create atmospheric lighting and they can be disabled.

Design & Connectivity

The stand of the monitor is sturdy and has a premium feel to it. You also get full ergonomic support, including up to 135mm height adjustment, +/- 90° pivot, +/- 45° swivel, -5°/23° tilt and 100x100mm VESA mount compatibility.

Next, the screen has a very light matte anti-glare coating that prevents reflections without making the image too grainy.

It has ultra-thin bezels at the top and at the sides with ~6mm black border before the image starts, while the bottom bezel is a bit thicker at around 16mm with a 2mm black border.

Along with the monitor and the stand, you also get the required cables (DisplayPort, a power cord and an external power supply), a warranty card and a quick start guide.

KTC H27T22 Monitor Ports

Connectivity options include two DisplayPort 1.4 inputs, HDMI 2.0 (limited to 144Hz), a headphone jack and a USB port for firmware updates only.

Although KTC advertises DP 1.2 for this monitor on some pages, it’s actually DP 1.4 as it allows for 2560×1440 165Hz with 10-bit color depth.

Price & Similar Monitors

The KTC H27T22 can be found for as low as $240, which makes it one of the most affordable 27″ 1440p high refresh rate IPS gaming monitors.

You can check the pricing on Amazon, Newegg, KTC and GeekBuying.

However, there are plenty of alternatives around this price range worth considering depending on their current pricing and your personal preference; this includes our highly recommended Acer XV272UV model based on a similar panel.

Acer’s model has an sRGB emulation mode, but its overdrive is locked when using VRR, resulting in noticeable overshoot at low frame rates. Further, the stand of the KTC H27T22 is a bit sturdier, so the choice between the two will come down to your personal preference.

In case you’d like more features in this form factor, check out the Gigabyte M27Q-P and M27Q v2.0 models, which have a USB hub and KVM switch for ~$300.

Also, note that you can find the HP Omen 27qs with a 27″ 1440p 240Hz IPS panel for $350.

To learn more about monitors and ensure you’re getting the model most suited for your personal preference, visit our comprehensive and always up-to-date best gaming monitor buyer’s guide.

Conclusion

KTC H27T22 DisplayNinja Review

Overall, the KTC H27T22 is an excellent gaming monitor for the money.

You get crisp details, vibrant colors and a strong peak brightness for immersive image quality, while the quick response time, low input lag and smooth VRR performance ensure responsive gameplay.

Additionally, the monitor has a fully adjustable stand and plenty of useful features!

Specifications

Screen Size27-inch
Resolution2560×1440 (WQHD)
Panel TypeFast IPS
Aspect Ratio16:9 (Widescreen)
Refresh Rate165Hz
Response Time (GtG)5ms (GtG)
1ms with OD
Response Time (MPRT)1ms (MPRT)
Adaptive-SyncFreeSync (48-165Hz)
Ports2x DisplayPort 1.4, HDMI 2.0
Other PortsHeadphone Jack,
USB (firmware updates only)
Brightness350 cd/m²
Brightness (HDR)350 cd/m²
Contrast Ratio1000:1 (static)
Colors16.7 million (8-bit)
94.6% DCI-P3
HDRHDR10
VESAYes (100x100mm)

The Pros:

  • Wide color gamut
  • High pixel density
  • Accurate and consistent colors
  • Plenty of features, including VRR and MBR up to 165Hz
  • Fully ergonomic stand

The Cons:

  • IPS glow and mediocre contrast ratio (as expected from this panel technology)

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Rob Shafer

Rob is a software engineer with a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Denver. He now works full-time managing DisplayNinja while coding his own projects on the side.