When it comes to buying a gaming monitor in 2022, it can be difficult to pick from a raft of great options. With the 3 main resolutions, 1080p, 1440p and 4K, well covered off by a raft of brands, competition has never been more fierce. Can Cooler Master’s GM32-FQ slot into a competitive positioning, as a relatively new entrant to the monitor space? The short answer is a simple yes.
The monitor comes with a 31.5 inch panel and boasts a 2560 x 1440 resolution, conforming to a standard 16:9 aspect ratio. The IPS panel is equipped with a 165Hz refresh rate (much better than 60Hz for gaming use cases), aiming this monitor strongly towards the gaming market – hardly a surprise given Cooler Master’s gaming-centric audience base.
The panel is also pitched as being a solid choice for professionals, due to 95% coverage of the DCI-P3 colour gamut, and a much more accurate IPS panel than other high-refresh options out there. We’ll be looking at the technology of this panel in more detail shortly, but it ticks a lot of boxes in our books.
The monitor also boasts some nice Cooler Master-specific touches, with a stand which resembles the outline of Cooler Master’s logo. The monitor is well packaged, and comes with all of the usual cables in the box, making sure you can get powered up and connected from the outset.
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Aesthetics & Design
The monitor also comes provided with a good deal of adjustability, mounting on the strong, included stand. The large Cooler Master emblem outline provides a strong and sturdy base (which also happens to look fantastic!), and adds a nice Cooler Master touch to the panel. With a good amount of height, tilt and pan adjustment, you can position the monitor exactly where you need it making for an ergonomic setup. You can also rotate the monitor panel on the stand, enabling portrait mode use cases – a feature likely to satisfy the programming types among us!
The stand is an area which demonstrates a strong level of attention-to-detail from Cooler Master, and helps prove they aren’t just looking to rebrand OEM designs in a bid to make some quick profit. It is practical, too, with the monitor feeling very sturdy on a desk, despite it’s relatively large size.
With an IPS panel, the GM32 boast far better colour accuracy and viewing angles than other options on the market. IPS, standing for In-Plane Switching, was developed to overcome the limitations of the TN panel type, which has been historically the most popular panel type used on gaming monitors. IPS is famed for providing more rich-looking colours, which can be better viewed from a wide range of angles. This limits colour distortion when the user is not looking directly at the panel, perfect for multi monitor setups and those looking for a more visually pleasing experience.
The panel also boats a peak brightness of 400 nits which feels more than bright enough for this monitors intended use cases, and puts it exactly level with the new Corsair XENEON, a display which costs around twice as much.
You’ll also find a contrast ratio of 1200:1, once again stacking up well against the competition.
The depth and vibrancy of the colours on this monitor are the real stand out for me. On a shelf this is the display that will make you go ‘wow’, and for all of the right reasons.
The IPS panel is our favourite type in and around this budget, and is an area this monitor excels. Cooler Master have chosen exactly the right approach here. Too many brands conflate gaming with solely refresh rate, and not the vibrancy or accuracy of colours.
The CoolerMaster GM32-FQ has a wide choice of IO, offering a display port, two HDMI ports, a type-C port for charging, and a 3.5mm headphone jack. For those using an older GPU unfortunately there is no DVI-D port, but display port and HDMI will be ideal for this high quality display.
Minimal Frame Design
One of the bigger points of contention that I have with monitors are thick bezels and frames. Maximising the ‘real-estate’ of a screen is important especially when spending a larger sum of money on PC build.
The CoolerMaster GM32-FQ sports a very minimal frame design, giving you plenty of screen panel instead of bezels. This is a great thing to see on new monitor entries!
MSI Optix AG321CQR
The MSI Optix AG312CQR is a slightly cheaper alternative to the CoolerMaster GM32-FQ. Providing the same refresh rate, a curved QHD display rated at 1440P. Also a 1ms response time, optimised for quick reactions during gaming.
Iiyama Red Eagle G-Master
Iiyama’s Red Eagle G-Master is a whopping 34″ display at 1440p resolution. The IPS panel gives vivid colours and wide viewing angles. Also sporting AMD’s FreeSync Premium technology for low input latency and minimal screen tearing!
LG UltraGear 27GP850
LG’s UltraGear 27GP850 is the cheapest of the three, but still providing very similar high-end performance. This monitor is Nvidia G-Sync compatible, offering bright colours, and to reduce stuttering. At 27″ and 165Hz, this is an awesome display.
Cooler Master GM32-FQ Review
Product Name: Cooler Master GM32 FQ
Product Description: The Cooler Master GM32-FQ is a superb monitor for the price point. It comes equipped with a panel that reports accurate colours and looks vibrant. The pleasing image quality is complemented by a fast refresh rate and low input lag – providing gamers with an option which doesn’t sacrifice image quality for refresh rate alone. For the price point, there really isn’t much else that compares. I also think Cooler Master have nailed it with this one.
Brand: Cooler Master
Value for Money
The Cooler Master GM32-FQ is a superb monitor for the price point. It comes equipped with a panel that reports accurate colours and looks vibrant. The pleasing image quality is followed up with a fast refresh rate and low input lag – providing gamers with an option which doesn’t sacrifice image quality for refresh rate alone. For the price point, there really isn’t much else that compares. I also think Cooler Master have nailed it with the build quality and aesthetic design – it is sleek, with some subtle (but visible) Cooler Master touches, that show just how much thought and effort has been put in to one of their first monitor products.
✅ Colour rich, IPS panel
✅ Fantastic viewing angles
✅ Great value for money
✅ High refresh rate
✅ Low response time
❌ Basic OSD controls
❌ No included USB C hub