The Sony Inzone M9 is Sony's 2022 attempt at producing one of the best gaming monitors on the market – and considering its expertise in terms of TVs, you would assume that the company can transfer some of that know-how over to this newest product line.
Sony has built the Inzone M9 to work equally well whether it's hooked up to your PlayStation 5 or your gaming PC. It certainly has the specs and the features to compete with the best monitors in the business – but is it the best gaming monitor for you?
Our Sony Inzone M9 review will help you answer that question, as we cover everything from the hardware design to the picture quality. When you're done reading this, look into picking up one of the best gaming keyboards or best gaming laptops as well.
Sony Inzone M9: price and availability
The Sony Inzone M9 is out now and available to buy for around £999 in the UK, or around $900 in the US – check the widgets embedded on this page for the lowest prices currently available online.
Sony Inzone M9 review: design and setup
The Sony Inzone M9 is slightly unusual in terms of its setup, with two pieces to the stand that we couldn't quite figure out until we actually looked up an image of the assembled monitor online. You're also going to need a Phillips screwdriver handy to fit the two screws required around the back – and that's a minor disappointment when so many monitors these days can be put together without any tools at all. When set up, the monitor measures 615 x 479 x 248mm.
When it comes to the look of the Sony Inzone M9, you can see the PlayStation 5 influence, with the main stand looking a lot like the console. Around the edges of the screen the bezels are pleasingly narrow, with only the bottom one anywhere near what you would describe as thick. There's some tilt and height adjustment available here, but you can't swivel or rotate the monitor, in part because of the stand. Around the back, we like the subtle lighting effect (you can change the colour), and it all looks pretty PS5-esque.
There's a decent port selection here: as well as a 3.5mm headphone jack, there's also three USB-A ports, one USB-B port, one USB-C port (with DisplayPort functionality), one DisplayPort 1.4 port, and two HDMI 2.1 ports. That means there's room for plenty of devices, plus a peripheral or three, and you're not going to be running out of connection options anytime soon. Sadly, there are no video cables included in the box.
There are some speakers built into this monitor, but they're not really much to write home about, and if you need any kind of audio quality beyond the most basic, you'll want to use some separate speakers or a pair of the best headphones. On the plus side, the on-screen menus are all clear and straightforward, and it's easy to navigate around them using the little joystick button around the back of the monitor. We'd also like to give Sony extra points for providing a PC app that can control the on-screen menus instead, which we found much more convenient to use.
Sony Inzone M9 review: features and picture
The first thing you notice about the Sony Inzone M9 is the brightness and crispness of the picture: it really does show off games (and pretty much everything else) rather well. The 96 separate dimming zones definitely help, and while they don't provide OLED-levels of contrast, the differences between black and white on this monnitor are much better than you might normally expect from an IPS LCD display. Blooming is kept down to a minimum, giving you more precise illumination and a sharp picture overall.
When it comes to the key specs, this is a 27-inch anti-glare panel with a peak brightness of 600 nits and a 3840 x 2160 (4K) resolution. It boasts a 1ms response time and a refresh rate up to 144Hz (DisplayPort) and 120Hz (on HDMI). There's support for VESA Adaptive Sync, Nvidia G-Sync, Variable Refresh Rate, HDR10, DisplayHDR 600 and more. There are plenty of tweaks and adjustments you can make to the picture too, as well as five different presets (including Cinema and FPS Game) to switch between.
We tested out the Sony Inzone M9 with games, videos, and with some general use computing, and it passed with top marks every time. We didn't notice any problems in terms of ghosting or input lag, while colours look realistic and vibrant. Colour uniformity isn't perfect, and there is a small amount of vignetting in the corners at times, but most of the time it's not going to be noticeable.
It could also be argued that 27 inches isn't enough room to truly appreciate everything that a 4K display resolution can offer, so it might be worth exploring your options when it comes to slightly larger monitors. Overall though, these are minor nitpicks around what is a really impressive monitor. The main job of a monitor like this is to make your games look fantastic, and in that regard no one is going to have any complaints.
Sony Inzone M9: verdict
The Sony Inzone M9 is a fine gaming monitor, there's no doubt about that. It's going to have a particular appeal for PS5 owners, as Sony's latest console can recognise the Inzone M9 and do some relevant tweaks behind the scenes, without you having to do anything: the picture mode is automatically selected and the HDR settings are automatically optimised. Oh, and the monitor has the same design aesthetic as the PS5 console.
Besides the excellent quality of the picture from this panel – which is the main selling point here, and the most important one – we also like the plethora of ports you get to work with for hooking up other devices. The monitor is even able to act as a KVM (Keyboard Video Mouse) switch, which means you can connect up to two computers to the monitor and use a single keyboard and mouse combination to control them both.
It all adds up to a monitor that gives you a TV-level viewing experience, but there are some downsides to talk about as well. The design is rather unusual, and one which you might love or hate depending on your preferences, while the speakers aren't great either. The unique stand doesn't offer much in the way of flexibility either, which can be annoying. If you can live with those drawbacks, however, then this might be the monitor you're looking for.
When it comes to pricing, Sony has got this just about right – obviously there's a lot of choice out there when it comes to the best 4K monitors, meaning you're likely to be able to find something that suits your needs pretty exactly. If picture quality, plenty of ports and quality HDR performance are important to you, then the Sony Inzone M9 going to appeal.
It's not easy buying a gaming monitor at the moment, because there's so much choice out there – in terms of design and specs and everything else. However, here are two top alternative suggestions.
The LG UltraGear 27GP950-B keeps the same 27-inch size and 4K resolution but is a little less expensive than the Sony model. What you don't get with the LG model are those 96 dimming zones, and that's going to make a difference when it comes to contrast and HDR performance.
The Sony Inzone M9 is neither all that big, nor curved. If that's what's putting you off then consider the Samsung Odyssey Neo G9: it's an absolute beast of a monitor, and in terms of specs and picture quality it's going to meet the needs of the majority of gamers. However, it's also very expensive, and you're going to have to pay almost double price for the 49-inch monitor.