MSI MPG 321URX vs. MAG 321UPX QD-OLED: The Difference and Which To Pick

MSI released several QD-OLED monitors featuring Samsung’s second-generation panel. We tested and reviewed the MPG 321URX QD-OLED and found it to be an excellent gaming and media-consuming OLED monitor overall. However, MSI also released a MAG 321UPX QD-OLED, which confused several would-be buyers, including those who had already purchased it. In this article, let’s compare the MPG 321URX vs. the MAG 321UPX QD-OLED. What are their differences, and which one should you get? Let’s find out below.

MSI MPG 321URX vs MAG 321UPX QD-OLED monitor

MSI 321URX vs. 321UPX QD-OLED – To MPG or MAG?

MSI has divided its products into three segments: the MEG, MPG, and MAG. MEG stands for MSI Enthusiast Gaming, MPG is MSI Performance Gaming, and MAG is MSI Arsenal Gaming. The MEG is MSI’s top-tier product, for example, the MSI MEG X670E ACE or the MEG Z790 GODLIKE. Meanwhile, the mid-tier products are designated MPG, and the lower-tier or value-oriented products are set under the MAG branding.

I’m not sure why MSI didn’t assign the 321URX as a “MEG” product. Maybe MSI plans to release a new MEG 4K QD-OLED monitor soon. They do have a MEG monitor in the form of 324C QD-OLED, but there’s no 32″ 4K MEG variant yet. Also, that monitor is from the previous generation of OLED panels. All of MSI’s latest QD-OLED are either under MPG or MAG.

Both the MPG 321URX and MAG 321UPX are similar in many ways. However, despite their similar appearance, their difference can be a make or break for a potential buyer.

Packaging and Accessories

First, let’s discuss the differences in their retail packaging and accessories. The MPG 321URX QD-OLED has fancier and more colorful retail packaging. Meanwhile, the MAG 321UPX QD-OLED ships in a simpler brown box. Nothing fancy, just a brown box and black ink showing an illustration of the monitor and some of its features, including its name.

When it comes to accessories, the MPG 321URX includes a DisplayPort cable, an HDMI cable, and a USB-A to USB-B upstream cable. Meanwhile, the MAG 321UPX only includes an HDMI cable. It does not include a DisplayPort cable, which honestly baffles me.

Panel and Design

MSI’s MPG 321URX and MAG 321UPX use the same next-gen QD-OLED panel from Samsung. Both are 31.5-inch 4K 240Hz panels with the same 0.3ms GtG response time. They are basically identical when it comes to color accuracy, brightness, text clarity, performance, etc. While the MAG is a tier lower than the MPG, both QD-OLED monitors are effectively similar since they use the same panel and configuration.

Design-wise, the MPG 321URX and MAG 321UPX are very similar. They use the same stand, and the frame design is similar. However, there are a few differences that may not be obvious right away. First, the MPG 321URX has a gray bottom chin, while the MAG 321UPX has a black bottom chin.

I’m not 100% sure, but the bottom chin on my MPG 321URX feels metal, whereas the MAG321UPX has a plastic bottom chin. While I appreciate a metal chin, since it is sturdier, I’d prefer a black color chin. It makes it more seamless. However, using the MPG 321URX for a couple of months now, the gray bottom chin doesn’t really bother me.

There’s also an LED indicator at the bottom center of both QD-OLED monitors. I know some people find it distracting, but I don’t find it distracting at all.

At the back, the MPG 321URX and MAG 321UPX have the same design, but their surfaces differ. The MPG 321URX has a brushed surface with a large dragon logo and, notably, an RGB-illuminated MSI logo in the top middle portion. Meanwhile, the MAG 321UPX doesn’t have an RGB illumination and has MSI’s small badge instead.

Both monitors use the same fan-less design with graphene film and a custom heatsink cooling solution. So, while they may slightly differ in aesthetics, the cooling solution is similar.

IO Ports

Looking at the IO ports, this is where the MPG 321URX and MAG 321UPX have several differences. With the MPG 321URX, you get a headphone jack, two HDMI 2.1 ports, one DisplayPort 1.4a, a USB-C with 90W PD, a USB-B for upstream, and two USB 2.0 ports.

Meanwhile, the MAG 321UPX only has two HDMI 2.1 ports, one DisplayPort 1.4a, one USB-C with only 15W PD, and a headphone jack. Since the MAG 321UPX does not have an upstream connection, it also doesn’t have a KVM feature. But the MPG 321URX has a KVM feature, and you can connect multiple devices to the monitor, although there are only two extra USB 2.0 ports.

Software and Firmware

MSI is using the same OSD software for both the MPG 321URX and MAG 321UPX, and both have the same OLED Care 2.0 feature. Of course, some options, like KVM, will not be available on the MAG 321UPX since it doesn’t have that feature. Below are photos of the MPG 321URX’s OSD menu.

Another glaring concern with the MAG 321UPX is that since it doesn’t have an upstream port, there is also no way to update the monitor’s firmware. Yes, you can’t update the MAG 321UPX’s firmware. Meanwhile, users can update the MPG 321URX’s firmware.

In fact, all newer MAG QD-OLED monitors, except for the MAG 341CQP QD-OLED, do not have an option or feature to update their firmware. These monitors are expected to work out of the box. Only the MPG QD-OLED monitors can update their firmware. MSI’s decision not to allow this is controversial.

Is Firmware Update Feature a Must?

There are two compelling arguments because of this. Let’s discuss the “no firmware update” first. Like other components, such as graphics cards, we don’t usually need to update their firmware. Similarly, monitors are expected to work out of the box and deliver what is advertised. If that’s the case, there is no need to update their firmware.

Also, I have watched and read several MPG 321UPX reviews, including feedback from people who have already bought it. Most of the reviewers found no glaring issues to warrant a firmware update, and many are recommending it.

On the flip side, many PC enthusiasts are against the idea of being unable to update the firmware. “What if a problem arises later?” “What if you need to correct the color?” “What if the initial firmware is faulty?” These are just some of the questions raised, and I think these are valid concerns. A firmware update feature is like a safety measure and contributes to the user’s peace of mind.

But if we do need to update the monitor’s firmware, then there’s something wrong with the product, and the manufacturer shipped the monitor with a buggy or somewhat faulty firmware.

For example, the competing Alienware AW3225QF has already had several firmware updates since its release. The latest one, M2B104, A02-00, is tagged as critical. It only meant that Alienware shipped them in a not-so-perfect state.

This may be a hot take, but for me, if the product works out of the box as expected and as advertised, I don’t think there is a need for a firmware update. If its broken or defective, we just need to return it. Besides, I really don’t like the idea of updating a monitor’s firmware. It should work out of the box, as expected, especially at this price range. The feeling of updating a monitor’s firmware is akin to updating a motherboard’s BIOS.

Pricing and Availability Difference

Given their differences in features, you might think that the MAG 321UPX is significantly cheaper than the MPG 321URX. But that’s not the case at all. The MPG 321URX has an MSRP of $950, while the MAG 321UPX has an MSRP of $900. There’s only a $50 price difference between the two, at least for the US. Prices outside the US may be different.

Availability is an issue as of writing this article. The MPG 321URX seems out of stock, which is no wonder since it is the better-featured monitor for only $50 more. But the MAG 321UPX is getting more demand as well.

Check the latest pricing and availability: (#ad)
MPG 321URX QD-OLED check on Amazon here.
MAG 321UPX QD-OLED check on Amazon here.


So Which QD-OLED To Get? The MPG 321URX or MAG 321UPX?

I have listed all the differences between the MPG 321URX vs. MAG 321UPX above. By now, you should already know which is the better monitor. For only $50 more, the MPG 321URX is a no-brainer. However, the 321URX is currently like a unicorn. It isn’t easy to get one since it’s always out of stock. Meanwhile, the MAG 321UPX is in stock, at least for now.

The MSI MAG 321UPX is currently the cheapest 32″ 4K 240Hz QD-OLED monitor in the market. Except for the MPG 321URX, all other 4K 240Hz QD-OLED monitors with next-gen OLED panels are priced around $1,200 to $1,400. This makes MSI’s QD-OLED monitors very attractive and competitive in terms of price.

If you can’t wait for the MPG 321URX, the MAG 321UPX is the next option. Though, you’ll have to compromise on some features.

MSI MPG 321URX vs MAG 321UPX QD-OLED Specifications

Panel Size31.5″31.5″
Active Display Area (mm)699.48(H) x 394.73(V)699.48(H) x 394.73(V)
Panel Resolution3840×2160 (UHD)3840×2160 (UHD)
Pixel Pitch (H x V)0.1814(H) x 0.1814(V)0.1814(H) x 0.1814(V)
Aspect Ratio16:916:9
Brightness (nits)250 (typ.)250 (typ.)
Contrast Ratio1500000:1 (typ.)1500000:1 (typ.)
Signal Frequency104.88~565.44 KHz(H) / 48~240.39 Hz(V)31~585 KHz(H) / 48~360 Hz(V)
Activated Range48 ~ 240Hz48 ~ 240Hz
Refresh Rate240Hz240Hz
Response Time0.03ms (GtG)0.03ms (GTG)
Dynamic Refresh Rate TechnologyAdaptive-SyncAdaptive-Sync
HDR SupportDisplayHDR True Black 400DisplayHDR True Black 400
Video Ports1 x DisplayPort 1.4a
2 x HDMI™ 2.1 (4K@240Hz)
1 x Type-c (DP alt.) w/PD 90W
1x Display Port (1.4a)
2x HDMI™ (4K@240Hz)
1x Type-C (DP alt.) w/ PD 15W charging
USB Ports2 x USB 2.0 Type-A
1 x USB 2.0 Type-B
Audio Ports1 x Headphone-out1x Headphone-out
Viewing Angle178°(H) / 178°(V)178°(H) / 178°(V)
Adobe RGB / DCI-P3 / sRGB97% / 99% / 138%97.5%/99%/138.2%
Surface TreatmentAnti-ReflectionAnti-Reflection
Display Colors1.07B ,10 bits1.07B, 10 bits
Power TypePower CablePower Cable
Power Input100~240V, 50/60Hz100~240V, 50/60Hz
Adjustment (Tilt)-5° ~ 15°-5° ~ 15°
Adjustment (Swivel)-30° ~ 30°30° ~ 30°
Adjustment (Pivot)-10° ~ 10°-10° ~ 10°
Adjustment (Height)0 ~ 110mm0 ~ 100mm
Kensington LockYesYes
Dimension (W x D x H)718 x 242 x 483 mm
718 x 69 x 418 mm (without stand)
717 x 242 x 457 mm
717 x 72 x 419 mm (without stand)
Carton Dimension (W x D x H)WW carton: 975 x 185 x 515 mm
Outer: 995 x 195 x 540 mm
WW carton: 972 x 185 x 513 mm
Outer: 1200 x 250 x 540 mm
Frameless DesignYesYes
VESA Mounting100 x 100 mm100 x 100 mm
Weight (net / gross)9.6 Kg/ 12.3 Kg9.1 kg /11.4 kg
NoteDisplay Port: 3840 x 2160 (Up to 240Hz)
HDMI™ 2.1: 3840 x 2160 (Up to 240Hz)
Type C(DP alt.): 3840 x 2160 (Up to 240Hz) and 90W PD charging
Display Port: 3840 x 2160 (Up to 240Hz)
HDMI™: 3840 x 2160 (Up to 240Hz)
Type C(DP alt.): 3840 x 2160 (Up to 240Hz) and 15W PD charging
Warranty3 years (including panel burn-in)3 years (including panel burn-in)
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Peter Paul
Peter is a PC enthusiast and avid gamer with several years of hands-on experience in testing and reviewing PC components, audio equipment, and various tech devices. He offers a genuine, no-nonsense perspective, helping consumers make informed choices in the ever-changing world of technology.

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