Panel Types: TN vs IPS

IPS vs TN

Short Answer

A TN panel offers bad viewing angles and color reproduction, but a better suited for fast-paced gameplay, such as FPS games. An IPS panel is preferred if you wish to have a great image quality and viewing angles.

An important spec to look for when choosing a computer monitor is the panel type. LCD monitors today primarily use a TN panel, IPS panel or a VA panel (or variations of these). In this article, we will focus on the difference between a TN panel and an IPS panel – TN vs IPS.

TN – Twisted Nematic

A TN panel, or Twisted Nematic panel if you prefer to use that name, is the most commonly used panel type as of the day of this writing, but they are being caught up by IPS panels as we write. One of the main advantages of TN panels is the short response time. TN panels produced today always have a response time (GtG) of just 1 millisecond. This makes them good for fast paced gaming, such as CS:GO, Battlefield, Call of Duty, Overwatch, Tom Clancy’s 6th, and so on. Basically anything that requires very fast reactions is better served with a TN panel. They also offer a high brightness and are cheaper (as of 2016) to produce than IPS panels.

The main disadvantage of TN panels is the viewing angles – the color shifts when viewing at the monitor from wider viewing angles. There’s a substantially large difference between the high-quality TN panels and low-quality TN panels, and the low-quality one offer even worse viewing angles before heavy color shifting occurs. The other downside is the reduced image quality over other panel types, including IPS.

IPS – In-Plane Switching

In-Plane Switching (IPS) is another panel type and it also has its advantages and disadvantages. The main advantage of IPS monitors is the great viewing angles. You can look at the monitor from very wide viewing angles and the colors will not shift at all. The other major advantage that IPS panels have over TN panels is the much better color reproduction. The image will look much better and alive on an IPS panel than a TN panel.

The downside with IPS panels is that they do not emphasize blacks as well as other panel types. Other disadvantages include a higher response time (typically 4ms today and often occurring problems with backlight bleeding and IPS glow.

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