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GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U Review – Gigantic 4K OLED 120Hz Gaming Monitor
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GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U Review – Gigantic 4K OLED 120Hz Gaming Monitor

by July 16, 2021
Overview
Highlights

Designed with next gen gaming in mind, the GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U is a large gaming monitor with a 48-inch screen and comes with HDMI 2.1 support. Is it worth your money? Let's find out.

Warranty

3-years

Price

RM6,399

Positives

+ Large 48-inch OLED display
+ High refresh rate
+ AMD FreeSync Premium support
+ Good array of ports including HDMI 2.1
+ Lighter compared to most displays with similar sizes
+ The stand is solid and easy to install
+ Remote control included
+ The best built-in audio system in a gaming monitor thus far
+ VESA wall mount support
+ VESA DisplayHDR 1000 support.

Negatives

- Would be better with 144Hz refresh rate instead of 120Hz
- Colour accuracy may not be the best for creative professionals
- Lacks ability to tilt / swivel / adjust height
- Safety warning message can be annoying
- The smaller 43-inch sibling may be the better buy
- Could use some RGB lighting on the rear
- Pricey

Pokde Scoreboard
Pokde Rating
Appearance
7.5
Features
8.5
Materials
8.5
Performance
8.0
User Experience
8.5
Value
7.0
Bottom Line

If you're looking for a large monitor that's suitable for next gen gaming, or need a TV replacement with most of the features that PC gamers have been enjoying thus far, the GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U is a solid choice.

8.0
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Unboxing the GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U

GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U Review

GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U Review – Box

The 48″ GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U monitor comes in a large box. Inside the box, you’re expected to find the following items:

GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U Review

GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U Review – Box content

  • DisplayPort cable
  • HDMI cable
  • USB Type-B cable
  • Power cable
  • 2 x Monitor stand
  • Screws for wall mount bracket
  • User guide
  • Warranty card
  • The GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U monitor itself

Appearance

GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U Review

GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U Review – Front

The GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U is a 48-inch OLED gaming monitor, making it the largest monitor we’ve reviewed thus far, right above the Acer Predator CG437K P. Looking at the front, you have thin bezels on all four sides, the AORUS logo on the bottom bezel, and an LED indicator below it. If you look at it from below, you can also find the navigation stick which also doubles as the power button.

GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U Review

GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U Review – Stands are not pre-installed

The stand isn’t pre-installed so you will have to install it yourself. It’s just two pieces of metal that you have to attach on the left and right side using screws and a standard Philips screwdriver. The overall process is simple, and I recommend placing it flat on a soft surface for maximum convenience.

GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U Review

GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U Review – Rear

Switching over to the rear, you have the AORUS logo taking center stage sandwiched between some silvery streaks for that added design flair. In case you’re wondering, there is no RGB lighting whatsoever here, not even on the logo.

GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U Review

GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U Review – Ports

If you’re looking for the ports, they can be found on the side of the monitor. It’s a good thing that the included power cable is angled so you don’t have the wire standing out unnecessarily. For the ports, you can find two HDMI ports, one DisplayPort, one USB-C port, two USB-A ports, one USB-B port, and an audio line-out.

Overall, the GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U gaming monitor has a rather clean appearance that looks more like a modern 4K UHD TV. If you plan on having a multi-monitor setup with this, it should be relatively easy to make it seamless given the thin bezels. Personally, it would be nice the included stand could make it a little taller but I wouldn’t say it’s a bad thing as it’s subjective and dependent on how you want your setup to look like.

Specifications

Panel Size 47.53″
Panel Type OLED
True Resolution 3840 x 2160 (4K UHD)
Display Viewing Area(HxV) 1052.16 x 591.84 mm
Display Surface Anti-reflection
Pixel Pitch 0.274 (H) x 0.274 (V) mm
Brightness 135cd/m2 (typical)
Contrast Ratio 135000:1
Viewing Angle (CR≧10) 178°(H)/178°(V)
Response Time 1 ms (GTG)
Display Colors 10 bits
Color gamut 98% DCI-P3
130% sRGB
HDR (High Dynamic Range) Support VESA DisplayHDR 1000
Maximum Refresh Rate 120Hz
Low Blue Light Yes
HDCP support Yes
Viewing modes Standard, Arcade, FPS, RTS/RPG, Movie, Reader, sRGB, Custom, Green
Adaptive refresh rate Yes, AMD FreeSync Premium
Signal Input 1 x DisplayPort
2 x HDMI 2.1
1 x USB-C (DisplayPort 1.4 mode)
2 x USB 3.0 Type-A
1 x USB Type-B (Upstream)
1 x Audio line-out
Earphone jack Yes
Power Consumption 325W (Max)
Chassis Color Black
Stand adjustments No
VESA Wall Mounting 300 x 300 mm
Weight 15kg

Performance

The brightness of the display when measured at 100% brightness in Standard mode was 318.8cd/m2, and it seems that the monitor was running at 50% brightness by default, which measures in at 196.2cd/m2. We conducted this test in the Standard mode, as it’s the one that doesn’t have any extras enabled by default.

Starting off with the screen uniformity test, the GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U performed pretty well. Out of 9 areas with the center as point of reference, 6 of them achieved recommended tolerance while the remaining pass with nominal tolerance. In simpler terms, this means that brightness is pretty much uniformed across all areas of the screen.

Color Accuracy

Standard Standard mode, calibration with DisplayCAL
Whitepoint 6800K 6900K
Average ΔE*00 5.11 2.35
Maximum ΔE*00 12.73 5.33

By default, the GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U doesn’t seem to have good colour accuracy, given the high Delta-E figures for both average and maximum. After calibrating it using Spyder5 and DisplayCAL, both the average and maximum Delta E figures see a significant improvement but it’s still good enough. I did try it several times over and again but the results were about the same. This would mean that while the colours are still within acceptable levels, it’s not a good monitor for usage that depends on accurate colour representation.

Gamut

Gamut Standard Standard mode, calibration with DisplayCAL
sRGB Coverage 100% 100%
Volume 156% 189.7%
Adobe RGB Coverage 84.6% 87.4%
Volume 107.5% 130.7%
DCI-P3 Coverage 96.7% 96.8%
Volume 110.5% 134.3%

For the gamut coverage and volume, there does seem to be quite a bit of improvement after calibration. Overall with 100% sRGB, 87.4% Adobe RGB, and 96.8% DCI-P3, the range of colours it can show is very wide. The only issue stopping it from being used for professional work is the accuracy of the colours being displayed.

Looking for a solid gaming laptop to pair this monitor with? Check out our review of the GIGABYTE AORUS 15G XC by clicking right here.

User Experience

GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U Review

GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U Review – Power button

The GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U is designed for gaming, but it’s definitely geared towards immersion and enjoyment rather than competitive gaming. You get a large 48-inch widescreen display with 120Hz refresh rate and VESA DisplayHDR 1000 support. The best part about this is that it uses an OLED panel so you get an insane contrast ratio with the truest blacks for that added immersive factor. For adaptive sync, you can make use of AMD FreeSync Premium.

GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U Review

GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U Review – Ports

For ports, you have one DisplayPort 1.4, two HDMI 2.1 ports, an audio line-out, two USB Type-A ports, one USB Type-C port, and one USB Type-B port. The ports are adequate but what I’m most happy about is the shift towards HDMI 2.1. Not only does it mean that this monitor will be perfect for next gen gaming consoles like the PS5 and Xbox Series X, the improved bandwidth from 18Gbps to 48Gbps means it can support 4K 120Hz and 8K 60Hz natively. You can use the USB ports for charging, and it does so decently, which is a solid plus point.

On the bottom of the monitor, right below the AORUS logo, you have the power button / navigational stick hybrid. You can use it to navigate through the monitor’s OSD, and it’s more than enough but if you need more controls, it does come with a remote control. The OSD itself is pretty straightforward to use and I had no trouble switching to different viewing modes or manually adjusting it to my liking. But there is one issue I have with this monitor, and it seems like there is no way to disable it via the OSD.

GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U Review

GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U Review – Error message

From time to time, a warning message pops up which states that the monitor needs to shut down for safety purposes. It takes half a minute to shut down, and then the monitor’s LED indicator light will blink continuously for anywhere between 5 to 10 minutes. At first, I suspected it was due to the use of OLED panel and to avoid burn-ins so it want you to let it rest for a short while. However, this message has popped when I’ve used it for less than an hour on a couple of occasions. It’s annoying and there’s no way to disable this safety feature.

GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U Review

GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U Review – Install the stands

With the GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U, what you see is what you get as you can’t tilt, swivel, or adjust the height. The stands aren’t pre-installed but it’s pretty easy to put on as it’s just two pieces of metal to screw on the bottom of the monitor. If you want, you can swap it out for a VESA mount as it supports the 300 x 300 mm mounting brackets, which should at least let you tilt it a bit.

GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U Review

GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U Review – Space Audio

One area that I was genuinely surprised by is the audio. In case you weren’t aware, the GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U has a built in 2.1 channel sound system consisting of their Space Audio feature, two 15W speakers, and one 20W subwoofer. It can get loud without any cracks in the sound, you get some clear and wholesome mids and highs, and the bass is pretty decent. Space Audio optimizes your listening experience and you can even pick from 4 different sound profiles to suit your taste. This is by far the best built-in speakers I’ve experienced in a gaming monitor thus far.

GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U Verdict

GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U Review

GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U Review

If you’re looking for a large monitor that’s suitable for next gen gaming, or need a TV replacement with most of the features that PC gamers have been enjoying thus far, the GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U is a solid choice. You get a large 48-inch OLED display, 120Hz refresh rate, AMD FreeSync Premium support, good array of ports, HDMI 2.1, lighter compared to most displays with similar sizes, the stand is solid and easy to install, remote control included, built-in speakers work spectacularly, VESA wall mount support, and VESA DisplayHDR 1000 support.

However, it’s not the perfect gaming monitor. It’s limited to just 120Hz refresh rate, colour accuracy may not be the best for creative professionals, lacks ability to tilt / swivel / adjust height, safety warning message can be annoying, the smaller 43-inch sibling may be the better buy, and it’s pricey. At RM6,399, I would expect at least 144Hz refresh rate but if your hardware can’t push frames that high, then 120Hz is perfectly fine.

At the end of our GIGABYTE AORUS FO48U review, I award this gaming monitor with our Silver Pokdeward.

Pokde-Silver

Big thanks to GIGABYTE Malaysia for sending us this monitor for the purpose of this review.

About The Author
Aiman Maulana
Jack of all trades, master of none, but oftentimes better than a master of one. YouTuber, video editor, tech head, and a wizard of gaming. What's up? :)