Sceptre U278W-4000R Review
The Sceptre U278W-4000R Monitor is a mid-range monitor from Sceptre, a fairly unheard of brand, but with an impressive set of monitors. The Sceptre U278W-4000R has something for almost every user and could even fit quite respectably as a gaming monitor despite its lack of adaptive sync technology. Even so, it delivers a sharp picture thanks to its 4K screen that’s best for everything including watching your favorite shows on Netflix.
- Excellent ultra-thin design
- Excellent color reproduction, and resolution
- Wide viewing angles
- Wide port selection: HDMI, DVI, and DisplayPort.
- Offers only tilt adjustment
- Lacks Adaptive Sync
- 250 cd/m2 screen brightness – slightly below our ideal
The Sceptre U278W-4000R Monitor is yet another member of the growing Sceptre brand name that shows much potential. Compared to other monitors of the same category, it is more than $140 cheaper, yet offering near identical features. So if you are in need of a high-resolution monitor at a budget, this is an option to consider. However, our one gripe with the Sceptre monitor is its brightness which makes its appear a bit washed out. But after proper calibration, it should deliver crisp and vibrant images.
Sceptre U278W-4000R Specs
|Display||27 inches IPS monitor | 16:9 aspect ratio|
|Resolution||3840 x 2160 @ 60Hz | 4K UHD|
|Response Time||5 ms (G-to-G)|
|Viewing angle||178˚ (Horizontal) / 178˚ (Vertical)|
|Dynamic Contrast Ratio||1,000,000:1|
|Refresh Rate||60 Hz|
|Built-in Speakers||2 × 3W4Ω|
|Wall Mountable||Yes | VESA compliant | 100mm x 100mm hole pattern|
|Eye Saver Mode||Blue Light Shift mode|
|Preset Picture Mode||Standard, User, Movie, ECO|
|Output Port||3.5mm Mini-Jack for External Speaker / Headphone|
|Tilt||Backward: 20˚, Forward: 5˚|
|Preset Game Mode||RTS (Real Time Strategy), FPS (First Person Shooter)|
- Buy the Sceptre U278W-4000R at Amazon
DESIGN AND FEATURES
The design of the Sceptre U278W-4000R monitor is a simple yet attractive. It features a thin bezel and overall slim design with only the bottom bulging, where most of its internal components are located. The unit is supported by a gray metallic base plate and stand that support it quite rigidly. The display is 27 inches which is pretty middling. Sceptre also offers 32-inch screened monitors and curved monitors of the smae size too. For instance, the Sceptre C328W-1920R, a 32-inch gaming monitor we reviewed recently is curved budget monitor one could opt for. It is an affordable option for gaming considering the immersive viewing experience it offers.
While the stand does its work sufficiently well, its Achilles heel is that it doesn’t provide pivot and height adjustments as premium monitor stands do. However, in all fairness, this is not something to complain about considering the price this unit comes at. Monitors of $100 more features the same kind of stand and with have less impressive features.
The on-screen-display buttons are located at the right rear end of the unit from the user. It takes a little getting used to master the controls since they are not located directly in sight.
The ports are located at the rear end of the unit and are color coded just so you don’t get them confused. That means that in case you decide to wall mount it, you will need to leave a little room for the cables connected to the monitor. I’ve read on some social forum of guys complaining of the cables preventing the monitor from being mountable. Well, that is a misconception or they probably didn’t know how to do it right.
Neither the stand nor the cables should prevent the monitor from being mountable. There’s a VESA compatible mount that ships with the Sceptre monitor, and a 100mm by 100mm hole mount pattern at the rear. Getting the stand in place is a pretty straightforward arrangement and the same ease applies to wall mounting the sucker.
Sceptre includes a free Philips screwdriver for screwing all the nuts into place, so you don’t have to buy one.
Here’s a video to help you along if you’re new to wall mounting.
Moving on, the Sceptre U278W-4000R weighs 9.1 pounds and measuring 8.06 x 24.51 x 17.46 inches(with stand). Impressively, it happens to be lighter than most of its competition such as the LG 27UD58-B (12.3 lbs, 8 x 24.9 x 18.2 inches), ASUS Designo MX27UC (17.7 lbs, 4.8 x 27.6 x 21.2 inches) and the LG 27UD68-P (10.8 lbs, 7.3 x 24.2 x 17.9 inches). Incidentally, it also comes with the same measurements with its sister the Sceptre U275W-4000R monitor which also offers a hard deal to pass. We’ll be briefly touching on it later on.
Display panel and resolution
The Sceptre U278W-4000R comes in an impressive IPS panel with a resolution of 3840 x 2160 pixels. The resolution alone is a rarity for 27-inch monitors which gives this Sceptre an edge and allows you to handle movies and images with flair. In addition to that, the 4K resolution is great for gaming, despite its lack of adaptive-sync feature. Impressively, most games played without screen tearing and motion blur unless one is playing very fast paced games. But if you are a casual gamer, the 5ms gray-to-gray response time and 60Hz refresh rate are quite sufficient.
However, if your interest lies in heavy gaming, you may want to have a look at the following options.
Gaming – 2160p (3840 x 2160p). Click here for our complete list of monitors.
|ASUS MG28UQ||Acer Predator XB271HK bmiprz||AOC U2879VF||LG Electronics 27UD68P-B||ASUS ROG Swift PG27AQ|
|Refresh Rate||60 Hz||60 Hz||60 Hz||60 Hz||60 Hz|
|Response Time||1 ms||4 ms||1 ms||4 ms||4 ms|
|Price||See It||See It||See It||See It||See it|
Viewing angles are also wide thanks to the IPS panel that it comes in.
Compared to most budget monitors, the Sceptre U278W-4000R comes with a very impressive port selection. Rarely do you find a monitor with two HDMI ports and a DisplayPort. Often times monitors come with a VGA port, One HMDI port and if you are lucky, a Display port.
It comes with two HDMI ports (HDMI 2.0 & HDMI 1.4), a single DVI port and a single DisplayPort (DP), along with an audio jack. The audio jack is an audio out for connecting to your headphones and external speakers.
You might be wondering, what exactly is the difference between the HDMI 1.4 port and the HMDI 2.0 port.
HDMI 1.4 can handle:
- 1080p (FHD) at 60 Hz
- 2160p (UHD) at 30 Hz
- 1080p (3D) at 120 Hz.
HDMI 2.0, on the other hand, can handle a lot more data. It is the go-to cable for HDR and 4K displays.
It is sufficient for handling:
- 1080p (FHD) at 120Hz HDR
- 2160p (UHD) at 60 Hz HDR
For you to enjoy the Sceptre’s full potential at 4K resolution, your computer needs to have an HDMI 2.0 port, and you also need to have an HDMI 2.0 cable. Fortunately, shipped along with the Sceptre U278W-4000R is an HDMI 2.0 port just to make your life a little easier. The HDMI 2.0 port is backward compatible with HDMI 1.4. So, with this Sceptre monitor, you get 4K ( 3840 x 2160) at either 30 fps or 4K at either 60fps with the HDMI ports available. The DisplayPort should give you 60fps while the DVI port as high as 60Hz on Full HD (1920 by1080 resolution).
What else is shipped in the box?
There are a couple of essentials you’ll find when unboxing:
- Base x 1
- Neck x 1
- Base Screws x 2
- Neck Screws x 2
- User Manual x 1
- Power Cord x 1 &
- HDMI 1.4 Cable x 1
When it comes to performance, the Sceptre U278W-4000R does not disappoint. A little adjustment on the display settings is necessary right from the box to get it to its best. However, once that is done, color reproduction is nothing short of impressive. Contrast levels, on the other hand, are equally good with blacks being as dark as would be expected for an IPS panel display. Screen brightness is not all that high – not as much as we would have liked it. At 250 nits, the Sceptre U278W-4000R is sufficiently bright for indoor use but not as bright when it comes to outdoor use or use in a brightly lit environment.
Its built-in speakers aren’t much in our estimation, with shallow base levels and high pitch at high volume. However, at this price, we consider this as a good add-on that doesn’t count for much. Further, most people use external speakers or headphones when they are listening to music or watching videos.
Rear view buttons
The back houses the rear view buttons which are used for menu control and calibration of your monitor. There are five buttons including a start (on/off ) button, OSD exit button (exits from the menu), volume up button, volume down button, and a menu button called On Screen Display (OSD). The OSD (menu) gives you options for adjustments such as color brightness and contrast. You can make a few adjustments on the gamma to make the picture as clear as you want it. This Sceptre monitor allows for such adjustements.
Aside from brightness, our other gripe with this monitor is the input lag. This could possibly be one of the tradeoffs Sceptre went for to cut down prices. It’s nothing much, but if you’re bound to notice it if you’ve used a gaming monitor before. The mouse lags, programs lag and at times audio and video don’t play in sync. It can be annoying but it shouldn’t occur if you use the monitor for casual office and other comuting tasks. It’s bound to occur mostly under load of heavy software and programs.
Sceptre U275W-4000R vs U278W-4000R
For those who’ve been online searching about Sceptre monitor reviews, or at least about the models available, you must have come across these two almost identical monitors. Just from their names, the Sceptre U275W-4000R monitor and the Sceptre U278W-4000R monitor sound and look the same. Well, aesthetically they share the same features, design, measurements, and weight. In fact, according to Sceptre, they are from the same series of Sceptre monitors.
So how similar or different are they?
For starters, the Sceptre U278W-4000R and the Sceptre U275W-4000R have more in common than they do in differences. They are literally almost identical in features and specifications save for pricing and the aspect ratio. Just like our reviewed unit, the Sceptre U275W-4000R is a 4K IPS monitor with 60Hz refresh rate. Additionally, the two share similar aspects including brightness levels (250cd/m2), refresh rate(60Hz), response time (5ms) and viewing angles (178 degrees).
We reached out to Sceptre on their website concerning this but didn’t get a response from them. So, as far we are concerned, the main difference is the pricing. The Sceptre U275W-4000R is the cheaper option of the two. We’ll do a Sceptre U275W-4000R review in the near future to establish what their main differences could be.
The overall performance of the Sceptre U278W-4000R is nothing short of enjoyable. It is as functional as it is reliable for media consumption and content creation. Video and photo editors will be right at home with this monitor. Moreover, it handles moderate gaming fairly well especially if you don’t mind the lack of FreeSync or G-Sync technology. However, it is a good idea to give some thought about where you intend to use it, whether indoors or elsewhere considering its 250 nit brightness level.
All in all, if you need a remarkable working solution or just need to upgrade from your old monitor, the Sceptre U278W-4000 makes a viable option.
- Buy the Sceptre U278W-4000R at Amazon