Best Gaming Monitor 2018 – The Definitive Buying Guide For Gaming Monitors
In this guide, we will present to you the best gaming monitors available right now. Our list of the best gaming displays includes 144Hz monitors, 1440p monitors for gaming, 4K displays, FreeSync displays and G-SYNC monitors as well. We also included monitors with refresh rates even higher than 144Hz.
Without any further ado, here are the best gaming monitors that you can buy in 2017.
|Best Budget Monitor||HP Pavilion 22cwa||21.5"||1920x1080||IPS||60Hz|
|Top Budget Everyday/Gaming Monitor||Acer R240HY||24"||1920x1080||IPS||60Hz|
|Acer G276HL Gbd||27"||1920x1080||TN||60Hz|
|Best Entry-Level 144Hz Monitors||ASUS VG248QE||24"||1920x1080||TN||144Hz|
|BenQ ZOWIE XL2411||24"||1920x1080||TN||144Hz|
|Best Entry-level 1440p Monitor||Acer G257HU||25"||2560x1440||IPS||60Hz|
|Best Budget 4K Monitors||LG 24UD58||24"||3840x2160||IPS||60Hz|
|Best Gaming Monitor for PS4 Pro and XBOX One S||Dell S2817Q||28"||3840x2160||TN||60Hz|
|Best Budget G-Sync Gaming Monitors||Acer XB241H||24"||1920x1080||TN||144Hz|
|Budget FreeSync Gaming Monitor||Acer Predator XG270HU||27"||2560x1440||TN||144Hz|
|Outstanding 4K G-Sync Monitors||Acer XB321HK||32"||3840x2160||IPS||60Hz|
|Best Ultra HD FreeSync Monitors||ViewSonic XG2700-4K||27"||3840x2160||IPS||60Hz|
|Best 1440p G-Sync Gaming Display||Acer Predator XB271HU||27"||2560x1440||IPS||165Hz|
|Incredible 1440p FreeSync Gaming Display||ASUS MG279Q||27"||2560x1440||IPS||144Hz|
|Acer Predator XF270HU||27"||2560x1440||IPS||144Hz|
|Affordable UltraWide Displays||LG 34UM68||34"||2560x1080||IPS||75Hz|
|Best UltraWide 144Hz Gaming Monitors||LG 34UC79G-B||34"||2560x1080||IPS||144Hz|
|Acer Predator Z35||35"||2560x1080||VA||200Hz|
|Excellent UltraWide 1440p Curved Monitor||Dell UltraSharp U3415W||34"||3440x1440||IPS||60Hz|
|Top UltraWide 1440p FreeSync Monitors||ASUS Designo MX34VQ||34"||3440x1440||VA||100Hz|
|Best UltraWide 1440p G-Sync Monitors||ASUS PG348Q||34"||3440x1440||IPS||100Hz|
|Acer Predator X34||34"||3440x1440||IPS||100Hz|
|Acer Predator Z35P||35"||3440x1440||VA||120Hz|
|Amazing 49-Inch HDR 144Hz Gaming Monitor||Samsung C49HG90||49"||3840x1080||VA||144Hz|
|Cutting-Edge 240Hz Gaming Monitors||Dell AW2518HF||24.5"||1920x1080||TN||240Hz|
If you are looking for the best gaming monitors for PC gaming, then you have come to the right place. We also include more monitors for gaming with different features, including the best IPS monitor for the money and the best budget 4K UHD monitor. Monitors vary widely in terms of features and price, but we have found the best monitors for gaming available today, which you can see in the table above.
With all the different gaming monitors out there that vary in terms of both features and price, it can be difficult to pick the best gaming monitor for your budget and specific needs. We are experts in the field and have researched the huge and continuously growing market of gaming monitors for you to select the best of the best.
We’ve reviewed monitors, discussed in forums, checked customer reviews, expert reviews and even more so. This has allowed us to find the best gaming monitors out there today. You can comfortably select one of the monitors listed above as you will have experts backing your choice. Our picks in the table above are updated every month to reflect the latest additions to the gaming monitor market.
The Best Gaming Monitors Today – Updated February 2018
Wondering what the absolute best gaming monitor for your budget and needs is? The table above reflects our recommendations and shows the best gaming monitors out there on the market today including the best 144Hz monitors, categorized by features and budget. We hope our list of the best gaming monitors will help you find your awesome monitor for gaming today! Want the best gaming monitor? Often, people just want a nice and easy table to look at for free. We got you covered, just look above at these amazing top-rated gaming monitors and see the individual monitor reviews below.
We have tailored this list to show the best gaming monitors that you can buy in 2018 and you can search for other monitors and products once you click on a product name as well.
As you can see in the list above, there’s not just one single best gaming monitor, since it all depends on your preferences and budget. Each monitor mentioned is the best monitor in that specific category according to our expert opinion and the pick will be updated on a monthly basis to reflect the latest additions and changes in the monitor we are and gaming monitor industry. We did test the monitors ourselves, we read customer reviews, expert reviews, accumulated ratings and other related things to fully ensure that our selections are the best.
This buyer’s guide includes top 1080p monitors, excellent 1440p monitors, and ultimate 4K monitors. Furthermore, we included 144Hz monitors (or above), G-SYNC displays and FreeSync screens as well. We also included curved monitors and UltraWide monitors.
All these monitors are either TN, VA or IPS panel type based, as you can see in the table representing the best gaming monitors above. We have done huge and extensive research to collect a list of the best gaming monitors 2017. They are qualified on factors and specifications related to gaming.
The list starts with the most budget-friendly monitors and then gradually moves up in terms of features, specifications, and price for that matter as well.
Throughout 2017 and various annual technology-related shows, we’ve witnessed some of the most amazing gaming monitors. Some of these displays include the first 4K monitors with 144Hz refresh rate and G-SYNC HDR such as the ASUS ROG Swift PG27UQ, the Acer Predator X27, the Acer Predator XB272-HDR, and the AOC AGON AG273UG.
We’ll also be seeing the first UWQHD gaming monitors to break the 100Hz refresh rate barrier, as the Acer Predator X35 and the ASUS ROG Swift PG35VQ will push the 3440×1440 screen resolution up to 200Hz via G-SYNC HDR.
AOC also has some new and exciting gaming monitors in the works for us as their AOC AG273QCX and AG273QCG TN-panel models promise the revolutionary 0.5ms response time speed.
Most of these gaming monitors were initially supposed to be released in late 2017, but unfortunately, all of them will actually be available from Q1 2018.
Best Gaming Monitor 2017 – 1440p IPS 165Hz G-SYNC Gaming Monitor (Editor’s Choice)
The Best 144Hz Monitor For Gamers On a Budget
Best UltraWide Gaming Monitor February 2018
Best Professional Monitor for Console Gaming, Work and Play
There are a lot of aspects in the hardware industry, which can sometimes be difficult to understand. Some are easy like for instance, a certain GPU gets 40 FPS in a game while another GPU gets 100 FPS. This makes it a fairly simple process to select the best graphics card for the money or for gaming.
One of the most important items for a smooth and good gaming experience is a monitor. Contrast ratio, input delay, response time, pixel pitch, refresh rate and resolution are all important aspects of monitors, but they’re not always fully understood by consumers. A monitor also is also a hardware that people very rarely change or upgrade. It’s a long-term purchase, so it’s important to make the right choice beforehand. That’s why monitor selection can be intimidating and overwhelming for a consumer.
For this reason, we have made this buyer’s guide for gaming monitors, including 1080p, 1440p and 4K displays. Furthermore, we’ve included FreeSync monitors, G-Sync monitors and 21:9 monitors, also more commonly called UltraWide monitors. We hope it helps you choose the right monitor for your needs!
These monitors are our top picks for the best gaming monitor 2017, as of the current month. You will also notice a significant increase in gaming experience if you use a gaming monitor for your PS3, PS4, XBOX 360 or XBOX One instead of a TV. Just remember NOT to get a 144Hz monitor if you are going to use the monitor for console gaming only since the current-gen consoles such as the PS4 and XBOX One run at 60FPS. This buying guide also covers the best gaming monitor for console gaming (PS4 and XBOX One) and the best gaming monitor for competitive gamers as well.
As always, if you have any comments, suggestions or hints, feel free to write a comment below and also your opinion on whether a 144Hz monitor is worth it or not. All these monitors listed here are well researched, hand-picked and are the best in their respective category. Be sure to read below about the type of monitor that you’re interested in. For photo editing purposes or any other work that requires very high color accuracy, see our monthly updated list of the best photo editing monitors instead.
If you wish to pick a gaming monitor yourself but don’t know what you should be looking after, we have written an extensive buying guide at the end of this article that lists the most important specs and what you should be looking after. Besides, a good gaming monitor is not enough for you to receive the lowest input lag in multiplayer games. You also need a fast and stable internet connection as well as a great wireless router.
Best Budget Monitor
For you, we have a strong winner in this field: the HP Pavilion 22xw which is the white model and the HP Pavilion 22cwa – the black version. These displays have a 21.5-inch viewable screen and feature a consistent and accurate In-Plane Switching (IPS) panel. Costing less than 100 USD, we find any of these two monitors to be the best monitor under 100 USD, and since they can be used for gaming, either the black or white version of them is also the best gaming monitor under 100 USD. You just have to choose whether you want a black or white monitor, and then you can enjoy a beautiful 22-inch monitor that you can use for casual gaming, office work and anything else for that matter.
The monitors are stylish as well and are a part of HP’s beautiful Pavilion monitor series that features an ultra-narrow bezel and Full HD resolution (1080p). If you want an affordable gaming monitor, then picking one of these monitors is our professional advice.
Budget Everyday/Gaming Monitor
You don’t necessarily want a dedicated gaming monitor, but want a monitor that is cheap, has good color representation and wide viewing angles? Then a monitor with an IPS panel is the right choice for you. You can actually get those cheap these days and they’re not much more expensive than the more commonly used TN panel. Chances are, If you’re going to get a 60Hz monitor, you’re a casual gamer or you don’t need the faster refresh rate. Therefore, you might as well get a better panel technology than TN.
After extensive research and product testing, we find the fairly new Acer R240HY to be the best budget gaming monitor 2017. Released in September 2015, this monitor with LED backlight became an instant hit. The R240Hy is a part of the Acer R series and has a Full HD resolution (1920 x 1080 pixels). With a 23.8-inch wide viewing size and a beautiful IPS panel that produces accurate colors and offers great viewing angles, you can’t go wrong in town for this price. The monitor itself is stylish as well with a ZeroFrame design, which means that it has a narrow bezel, making it a good choice for a multi-monitor setup for a great price. For around $260, you can have two beautiful full HD monitors side-by-side.
The stand is very clean as well, which helps keep your desktop space clean. The Acer R240HY is a great monitor for console gaming as well, so if you have a PlayStation 4 or XBOX One, then you should also consider getting this monitor. It might not be the best monitor for console gaming, but it is certainly the best 1080p gaming monitor for its price and also the best IPS monitor.
This gaming display is also the best gaming monitor for XBOX One and the best gaming monitor for PS4 considering these consoles only support 1080p and 60Hz, which is exactly what this monitor features.
The panel used in this monitor is a newer type and therefore offers the best response time that IPS panels these days have: only 4ms. The refresh rate is 60Hz, which is to be expected at this price point as we just mentioned. The 4ms response time is certainly good for gaming too, as older panels have higher response times and the high-end IPS gaming monitors also offer a minimum of 4ms response time due to the nature of IPS panel technology.
The input lag on this monitor is not extremely low, but not high either, which is good enough for casual gaming. Remember that input lag is not the same as response time! Costing less than $150 (around $130 currently), we find this monitor to be the best gaming monitor under 150 dollars and since this is the best monitor you can get for your money for under $150, we also think this monitor is the best monitor under 150 dollars – for everyday work, browsing the internet, watching movies or just about anything you would do on your computer.
It will give you a very solid performance for the money and a great monitor choice for the casual gamer and everyday user as well. Simply said, we think it is the best gaming monitor for casual gaming and the best monitor for the money in 2017.
Connection options on the Acer R240HY are rich as well with VGA, DVI and HDMI inputs. Furthermore, the monitor has an inbuilt blue-light filter, Flicker-less technology that reduces flickering and a proprietary Acer ComfyView technology, which reduces screen glare. The only downside is that this good-looking and modern 1080p monitor does not have VESA mounting holes, so you can not mount it on a wall or on a monitor arm. Another side note is that this monitor is currently only available in the United States so if you are located in Europe, we will redirect you to the Asus VC239H monitor instead, which is similar in many ways, where the main difference is that it is 23-inches large.
After doing some heavy testing of all kinds of monitors, we find the Asus VC239H to be the best 23-inch monitor, due to the good performance that it offers. It is not nearly as popular as the R240HY in the United States, though, which we find to be the best budget monitor and the best monitor for the money. Like before, this is also one of the best console gaming monitors for 2018.
If you wish to have a monitor that you can mount on a wall or on a monitor arm, then take a look at the very similar monitor, in terms of raw specs, then have a look at the ASUS VS239H-P. This monitor is 23-inches big and even has a DVI-D connector on the back as well.
If you want a bigger screen, e.g 27″, then expect to drop about $100 more to the price and when you’re up in that price range, you might as well save up and get the 1440p overclockable monitor, the QNIX 2710 for about 320$ right now. Monitors of this size are also great for console gaming, so if you want a 27-inch gaming monitor with great visuals, then our best advice is to get the Acer H277H. This monitor offers the same benefits and features as the Acer R240HY, it is just 3 inches bigger. This one is the best 27-inch monitor for the money that we recommend.
If you just want a 24″ monitor with a TN panel and not IPS like the others, then our advice is to buy the BenQ GL2460HM. This cheap gaming monitor has been a bestseller for a long time in many nations and is the best TN monitor with 60Hz refresh rate, TN panel and at this size. So if you really don’t care about IPS and what it has to offer, and you just want a bigger monitor than this one, then you might want to take a look at the Acer G276HL Gbd. It’s a 27″ TN monitor and currently costs $170. It has a 24″ version, which is being sold for $130 and a 23″ version being sold for $120.
You can select one these screen sizes on the same page linked above and it makes this series of monitors from Acer to one of the most budget-friendly monitor series that is currently available on the market.
Entry-Level 144Hz Monitor
If you’re looking at an entry-level gaming monitor with a high refresh rate, then the ASUS V248QE is certainly the monitor you should buy. It comes with a 1ms response time and a 144Hz maximum refresh rate, and thus giving you a smooth performance at higher frame rate gameplay. It will give you a competitive edge in games like Counter-Strike, Call of Duty, Battlefield, since these are FPS games and require very quick response times and minimum input lag. The ASUS VG248QE has a reported input lag of only 12ms and is a great ASUS gaming monitor.
Furthermore, it comes with support for Nvidia LightBoost, a technique that eliminates motion blur and giving you CRT motion clarity, but it is only usable up to 120Hz.
The only downsides with this monitor are the 1920x1080p resolution and its TN panel. Considering its price, you will get a great deal for your money and you will certainly love it if you switch from a 60Hz monitor. All of the entry-level 144Hz monitors have a maximum resolution of 1080p as well, so that’s a downside for all of them. If you want a higher resolution, then you need to spend even more money on the best gaming monitor for you.
So if all you want is a 144Hz monitor, then this monitor is the recommended choice right now. Just have a look at the reviews on Amazon to see what other buyers think about this incredible monitor for gaming.
If you want to use motion blur reduction technology at 144Hz and not 120Hz, then the BenQ XL2411Z is a brilliant choice. This gaming monitor has actually been rebranded as the BenQ ZOWIE XL2411 now and the BenQ XL2411Z is no longer in production. This amazing gaming monitor is a little more expensive, but it has BenQ Blur Reduction technology, which is even better than LightBoost, and it works at 144Hz too. If you find the BenQ at a cheaper price than the Asus somewhere, then get the BenQ hands down. Even if the BenQ is just a little more expensive than the Asus, then you should still get the BenQ.
It’s just better and worth the trade-off in most cases unless the price difference is too much. Another good benefit with the BenQ XL2411Z (BenQ ZOWIE XL2411 now) is the flicker-free backlight, which helps prevent eyestrain after longer periods of use. Prices on the monitors may vary, depending on where you live and whether or not there is an on-going campaign. Also, beware that the BenQ has no built-in speakers, so have that in mind if that means anything to you. This is not an issue for most people since many gamers use dedicated PC speakers, headphones or a headset.
With all this said, if you want a budget 144hz monitor, then you should seriously have a look at the AOC G2460PF. Wondering what the best 144Hz monitor is? Well, this is the answer. This 144Hz gaming monitor surprised us in a positive way. We did not expect this kind of performance from such an affordable display, so it is not surprising that we heavily recommend it to gamers who are looking for a cheap 144hz monitor.
Even more amazing is that this monitor supports AMD FreeSync, so if you have an AMD graphics card that supports FreeSync, then you should seriously consider purchasing this display if you are looking for budget 144Hz gaming monitor. The FreeSync range on this monitor is 30-144Hz. You can even overclock it to 160Hz with FreeSync enabled, but it will void the warranty for this amazing gaming monitor.
If you want a gaming monitor for pro gaming, then any of these 144Hz monitors and upwards is the way to go. AMD users should pick this one, though, because of the FreeSync support. The AOC G2460PF gaming monitor is certainly the best cheap gaming monitor with 144Hz refresh rate and FreeSync support out there. With a response time of 1ms as well, this is the best 1ms gaming monitor at this price point and certainly the best 144Hz monitor for the price as well.
After doing some extensive testing with this monitor very soon and if the results are as we expect them to be, we will recommend this gaming monitor as the main pick for an entry-level 144Hz monitor. With a current price tag of only $210, we find the AOC G2460PF to be the best gaming monitor under 250 USD. It is cheaper than other 144Hz gaming monitors that do not even support AMD FreeSync and use panels that are many years old. The AOC G2460PF is a solid winner if you have an AMD GPU that supports FreeSync and you’re looking for a great 144Hz monitor. Also, if you are looking for the best monitor for CS:GO, which is Counter-Strike: Global Offensive in case you wondered, we find any of these monitors mentioned in this section worthy. They are also great for other FPS games, MOBA games and RTS games, such as Battlefield, Call of Duty, League of Legends, Starcraft and DOTA 2.
Entry-level 1440p Monitor
As with the entry-level 144Hz monitor, there’s also an entry-level 1440p monitor for those of you who just want WQHD resolution (1440p). The monitor is one of Acer’s relatively new models that were released at the beginning of 2016. The Acer G257HU is the monitor in question here. Although, it’s only 25″, compared to the 27″ screen size that WQHD usually have, it’s still a very impressing monitor. It has an IPS panel, which is similar to Samsung’s PLS panel type. It has DisplayPort, HDMI and DVI connectors, inbuilt speakers and an incredible 4ms response time, which is pretty impressive considering it’s an IPS panel.
Also, it has a very sleek and elegant zero-frame design, which you can see below.
You can’t get this monitor everywhere yet, so if you might want to wait a bit longer if you can’t find it near you or contact local computer hardware stores to see if and when they get it in stock.
Best Budget 4K Monitors
Right now here in the year of 2018, 4K resolution is a major priority for many display manufacturers. Fortunately, 4K monitors have become much more accessible and affordable this year while some 4K gaming monitors are still fairly expensive. Current generation graphics cards will not be able to output 4K gaming beyond 60Hz just yet. The new NVIDIA GTX 10XX series and AMD’s VEGA are able to push up to 60 FPS and are ideal for VR gaming as well (virtual reality gaming).
If you want an affordable 4K monitor, we highly recommend the inexpensive LG 24UD58. This monitor is the cheapest 4K monitor on the market, and yet it features an IPS panel and AMD FreeSync technology which makes it an irresistible deal. The LG 24UD58 4K UHD monitor delivers a stunning 1 billion colors covering over 99% sRGB color gamut, meaning you will get stunning visuals on top of all the other amazing features.
Since FreeSync is also supported, it makes this a budget 4K FreeSync monitor as well. It can be used for gaming as this feature will greatly improve the overall gameplay experience if paired with an AMD FreeSync compatible graphics card. By this logic, the LG 24UD58 can be called a budget 4K FreeSync gaming monitor, which this guide is mainly about.
Moreover, as it offers two HDMI 2.0 ports and a DisplayPort 1.2, it’s also a great choice for those playing on 4K capable gaming consoles. The monitor’s Black Stabilizer feature can automatically increase brightness in order to improve visibility in the dark-themed games.
The price for the LG 24UD58 IPS monitor is around $300. There’s a high demand for this monitor so if this is the one you need, be sure to grab it quickly! 4K resolution is still under heavy development and we should see great improvements in the year of 2018 when we’ll finally be able to reach 144Hz at 4K.
If you can invest a little bit extra, go for the 27-inch version, the LG 27UD58 which is although around $80 more expensive, still quite great value for money.
Since 4K makes everything tiny on such relatively small screens, you will, naturally, have to scale your interface to make small items readable and crisp. If, however, you wish to scale as less as possible and still get a reasonably priced 4K monitor, consider the 32-inch AOC U3277PWQU.
This huge 4K display is based on a 31.5-inch 10-bit VA panel with 100% sRGB color gamut, 178-degree viewing angles, quick 4ms response time, and rich 3,000:1 contrast ratio for stunning and vivid truly black colors. In addition, the AOC U3277PWQU is fully ergonomic (VESA and pivot, height, tilt, swivel adjustments) and has extensive connectivity including an HDMI 2.0 with MHL support, a DisplayPort 1.2, a VGA, a DVI, and four downstream USB ports. Quite a great bang for the buck.
Best Gaming Monitor for PS4 Pro and XBOX One S
So, have you just got one of the newest gaming consoles, the PlayStation 4 Pro (PS4 Pro) or XBOX One S? Well, you don’t need to worry as we have a top recommendation for you as well and it’s the Dell S2817Q. The PlayStation 4 Pro, previously known as PlayStation 4.5 and PlayStation Neo, is capable of 4K gaming at 60Hz. XBOX One S, on the other hand, supports only 4K UHD video playback. HDR is supported on both platforms. When the XBOX Scorpio gets released in late 2017, it will support 4K gaming as well. By purchasing this monitor, you are also future-proofing yourself for the XBOX Scorpio when it gets released, if you are an XBOX fan.
In order to get the most out of your gaming experience, you’re going to need a 4K gaming monitor that supports 60Hz at 4K resolution. While both monitors we’ve previously mentioned do so, the Dell S2817Q has the best value for the money when it comes to console gaming. Priced at only ~$340, it offers a big 28-inch TN panel which will also allow you to display content from two different devices at the same time through its two MHL-capable HDMI 2.0 ports, DisplayPort 1.2, or mini-DisplayPort. Additionally, it offers two downstream USB 3.0 ports, the headphone jack, and high-quality 9W built-in speakers.
The Dell S2817Q TN panel has narrow 170/160-degree viewing angles and less vibrant colors than the two gaming monitors above. However, its faster 2ms response time speed, rich connectivity, and the plethora of features make it a great choice for console gamers. If you’d rather prefer better image quality, you should invest a bit more and get the LG 27UD58 or the AOC U3277PWQU 4K UHD monitor.
Budget G-Sync Gaming Monitors
If you’re looking for a budget-minded computer monitor that supports Nvidia G-Sync, then Acer is the company you should buy from. Their XB series is widely known for their great performance, and in this case, you should get the Acer Predator XB241H, which costs less than $400. This monitor also just goes by the name Acer XB241H. If you were looking for the Acer XB240H and Acer XB270H here in this section, then you should know that these computer screens have been outdated. There’s no Acer Predator XB271H though. If you’re in the 27-inch range, you should get a 1440p resolution anyway and the best pick there will be the Acer Predator XB271HU.
G-Sync allows the monitor to synchronize the refresh rate with the frame rate of your GPU, giving you a smooth and tear-free gameplay, just AMD FreeSync. Only the method is different, where G-Sync is better, but also more expensive, usually a $150-$200 added premium.
The 24-inch Acer Predator XB241H gaming monitor features a Full HD resolution and a beautiful 144Hz refresh rate. Furthermore, a 1ms response time is offered and ULMB (Ultra Low Motion Blur) as well, which most G-Sync monitors have. This nifty little feature will strobe the backlight and therefore give you CRT motion clarity, similar to that of LightBoost, but just better. G-Sync and ULMB can’t be activated at the same time, however, due to the nature of how these technologies work on the screen.
To utilize G-SYNC, you need to connect the monitor with the DisplayPort. The Acer XB241H gaming monitor comes with a DisplayPort cable in the package and even has inbuilt 2x 2W stereo speakers.
Budget FreeSync Gaming Monitor
As you might know by now, Nvidia G-Sync and AMD FreeSync are rivaling technologies. The principle is the same but the method differs. AMD utilizes DisplayPort Adaptive-Sync protocols, whereas Nvidia uses proprietary hardware to synchronize the refresh rate of the monitor with the frame rate the GPU can handle at the very moment. This ultimately means that FreeSync monitors are cheaper than similar G-Sync monitors, usually $150-$200 cheaper like we just mentioned above.
Lucky for us consumers, Acer does not choose a side and comes to the rescue. Similarly, with the XB series, they have the XG series, which supports FreeSync instead. The Acer Predator XG270HU is, as of the date of this writing, the only monitor in this series. It’s a 27″ TN monitor with 1440p resolution and 144Hz refresh rate. Furthermore, it has a response time of just 1ms and a very low overall input lag, making it the perfect gaming monitor for gamers wanting a WQHD resolution, 144Hz refresh rate and FreeSync support. This gaming display also has integrated speakers and HDMI, DVI and DisplayPort connectors.
Considering the specs and the fact that this monitor supports FreeSync, the price is actually very good compared to similar G-Sync monitors. This monitor is a hot item and in high demand. It’s a good budget option for AMD graphics card users who just want a 144Hz gaming monitor with FreeSync support and 1440p resolution on top of that.
If you want a 24-inch monitor instead, then we certainly recommend the AOC G2460PF, which we also mentioned earlier. It’s a very budget friendly 24-inch 144Hz monitor that supports AMD FreeSync in the 35Hz-144Hz range if you use the newest drivers. It boasts a TN panel that supports a maximum resolution of 1080p and has a response time of 1ms. It is for sure one of the best monitors for gaming 2017.
Outstanding 4K G-Sync Monitors
Achieving high frame rates at 4K resolution is an expensive feat, but it is becoming more and more reasonable, especially with the launch of the AMD VEGA cards and the slow decline in prices of the good old NVIDIA GTX 10XX series, such as the NVIDIA GTX 1080 and the GTX 1070. Gamers that have a rig good enough to run games at 4K well should also consider buying a monitor that suits the build. By this, we mean that you should get a top rated gaming monitor with 4K resolution and support for NVIDIA G-SYNC for the best gaming experience possible.
The Acer XB281HK is a 28″ 4K display with TN panel and a refresh rate of 60Hz with DisplayPort. It also has 1ms response time and support for NVIDIA G-SYNC. As you can see, this monitor was built for gaming, and the only downside is the reasonably high price. We find this to be a very good 4K G-SYNC monitor for an affordable price.
If you wish to get the best possible 4K G-SYNC gaming monitor then our best suggestion is the Acer Predator XB271HK. It even features an IPS panel and we find it to be the best 4K gaming monitor 2017, even one of the top 10 gaming monitors 2017. It was considered one of the best monitors for gaming 2015 and still scores very high to this very day. It’s simply the best 4K monitor 2017 out there today (at least for gaming). Well, that is unless you’ve decided to go all in and go for the Acer Predator XB321HK which is same as the XB271HK except for its larger screen size. In this case, you may also consider saving up for the upcoming 4K 144Hz monitors in 2018 instead.
If you’ve really got your eyes set on playing at 4K with a high-quality IPS panel display, but want to save an extra $100, consider the AOC AGON AG271UG as a cheaper alternative. Performance and image quality-wise, it’s nearly identical to the more popular Acer XB271HK. It also offers the same extra features including full ergonomic support, two 2W speakers, an HDMI 1.4 port, a DisplayPort 1.2, and three downstream USB 3.0 ports.
Best Ultra HD FreeSync Monitors
High-end graphics cards sure are expensive, and so are the top-tier gaming displays, especially if you want to use only the latest and the best tech. We’ve discussed how much and why G-Sync monitors are more expensive than the FreeSync ones, but luckily, thanks to the new Vega cards, AMD has made 4K gaming more accessible to those with tighter budgets. Although the Vega GPU prices haven’t yet fully stabilized, FreeSync monitors are still quite affordable in comparison to the G-SYNC.
The ViewSonic XG2700-4K is $250 cheaper than the AOC AG271UG and $350 cheaper than the Acer XB271HK yet is also features all the crispiness of 4K resolution and color intensity of an IPS panel. Moreover, it offers extensive connectivity including the quad-USB 3.0 hub, two HDMI 1.4 MHL, an HDMI 2.0, a DisplayPort 1.2, and a mini-DisplayPort. It is fully ergonomic, has built-in speakers, and its LG-based IPS panel supports 10-bit color (8-bit + FRC) covering 98% sRGB and offers quick 5ms (GtG) response time speed.
The LG 27UD68 is essentially the updated model of the previously mentioned LG 27UD58 gaming monitor, but with a more appealing bezel-less design. In comparison to the ViewSonic XG2700-4K, the LG 27UD68 is less ergonomic (VESA and tilt-only) and has no extra USB 3.0 ports yet it’s $100 more expensive than the ViewSonic model. Whether its charming ultra-thin bezel is worth it, is up to you.
We recommend the LG 27UD58 which we deemed as both the best 4K FreeSync gaming monitor and the best 4K budget monitor overall. However, it’s not always available for purchase.
Best 1440p G-Sync Gaming Display
Gaming at 4K is a very demanding task for your GPU and you might not get the highest frame rates. Therefore, gaming at 1440p is currently the preferred way. Once again, Acer comes to the rescue: the Acer Predator XB271HU. It’s a 27″ IPS monitor that offers everything you could wish for right now: NVIDIA G-SYNC, 1440p resolution, IPS panel and 144Hz refresh rate, which can be boosted up to a staggering 165Hz when G-SYNC is active.
This incredible gaming monitor has it all and that’s we don’t hesitate to call it the best gaming monitor that 2018.
It is noteworthy to mention, however, that you have to use DisplayPort with this monitor since there are no other interfaces. This is for a good reason, though, because it is the only interface that supports 1440p at 165Hz and G-Sync at the same time. A DisplayPort cable is included in the box, so you won’t have to worry about that unless you have special cable length needs of course.
There’s a very high demand for this monitor and limited supply, so it’s often out of stock at various retailers.
The only catch with this monitor is the 4ms response time, but this is due to the nature of IPS panels and you won’t really notice any significant difference. The 4ms response time is actually pretty normal with newer IPS panels. This monitor is the successor of the very popular Acer Predator XB270HU, which only supported 144Hz maximum and had a thicker bezel. The newer Predator XB271HU has a thinner bezel, which is preferred by almost everyone, as it makes multi-monitor setups look great and they just look better in general.
Also note that there’s also the ASUS ROG SWIFT PG279Q, which also goes up to 165Hz in G-Sync mode and it is very much similar to the Acer Predator XB271HU in general, as they use the same panel. Overall, we find the quality of the Acer Predator XB271HU a bit better, which is why we recommend that gaming monitor over this and we find it to be the best 27-inch gaming monitor. The Acer Predator XB271HU is simply such an amazing PC display. We find it to be the best gaming monitor 2018 out there today.
Incredible 1440p FreeSync Gaming Displays
Similarly, with the case of the 4K FreeSync monitor, a 1440p FreeSync monitor is also behind G-Sync in terms of price. The best option right now is to buy the ASUS MG279Q, which is available in all major retailers right now. It is currently priced around $650 and has very similar specs to the XB270HU.
The screen offers a 27″ IPS screen with a maximum resolution of 1440p. Furthermore, it supports a refresh rate up to 144Hz and it supports AMD FreeSync technology.
There is a catch, though: When using FreeSync on this monitor, your refresh rate can only range between 35-90Hz and not more or less. This is not a limitation of the FreeSync technology, since it supports up to 240Hz, but instead a limitation of the monitor. Without FreeSync, you can get up to 144Hz refresh rate, though. You can, however, use a hack to ramp up the FreeSync range to 57Hz-144Hz on the ASUS MG279Q, which many users of this monitor already have.
Another highly recommended alternative, if you don’t mind the hack, is the Acer Predator XF270HU. This monitor is even cheaper than the ASUS MG279Q mentioned above, costing just around $550. The Acer XF270HU has a FreeSync range of 40Hz-144Hz out of the box, which is why we recommend this monitor even more than the ASUS MG279Q. It is a contender for the best 1440p gaming monitor 2017. We expect a vast majority of consumers to buy this competitive gaming monitor instead of the MG279Q due to the higher price and restricted FreeSync range.
Affordable UltraWide Displays
The LG 34UM68 has been out for quite some time now and is still undefeated as the best UltraWide 1080p FreeSync monitor for the money. For under $400 you can get an IPS UltraWide 2560x1080p gaming monitor with support for AMD FreeSync, giving you a tear-free, clear and responsive gameplay.
The monitor is Energy Star qualified and has a 5ms GtG response time. It also has inbuilt 2x7W stereo speakers and has a relatively thin bezel. It also supports something called Dynamic Action Sync, giving you a very low input lag and making this monitor a good choice for competitive gamers also, where every millisecond matters. The draw is that it only supports up to 60Hz, which can be uncomfortable for people who have tried 144Hz, as per the saying “Once you go 144Hz, you never go back”. Other than that, this is a very beautiful and elegant 21:9 FreeSync monitor that has yet to be beaten and gives you great value for money.
Remember that FreeSync requires you to use DisplayPort cable and you need a compatible AMD graphics card. A DP cable is often included inside the box, but they are more than often too short.
Its smaller brother, the LG 29UM68 is even more alluringly priced at only $250 at the moment. It includes all the same exclusive features of the newer LG monitors such as Game Mode, Black Stabilizer, On-Screen Control, and Screen Split. Furthermore, it has gorgeous thin bezels, and a sharp and vibrant image quality with smooth performance, especially if paired with a proper AMD GPU.
Best UltraWide 144Hz Gaming Monitors
Gaming at 144Hz makes everything buttery smooth, no matter the resolution. While most people stick to the conventional displays for gaming – i.e. most players find 27-inch monitors to be the sweet spot for gaming as they’re neither too big nor too small, some are perfectly contented with 24-inch monitors, and then there are those who want something different. Unfortunately, there are no 3440×1440 144Hz monitors yet, so if you wish fluid gameplay and an ultra-wide monitor, you’ll have to stick with the lower 2560×1080 screen resolution.
In 2018, we will see the first 3440×1440 ultra-wide monitors to go beyond 120Hz, in fact, they’ll go up to whopping 200Hz in addition to supporting G-SYNC HDR or FreeSync 2. Naturally, being the absolute state-of-the-art, these displays will also cost accordingly. So, unless you plan on saving up to $2,000 for one of these revolutionary displays, the following ultra-wide monitors can keep you entertained.
The BenQ XR3501 is the most affordable ultra-wide 144Hz curved gaming monitor that offers an immersive and responsive gameplay. This giant 35-inch display will wrap you up around the in-game action with its 2000R curvature and high-contrast VA panel with stunning color intensity. In addition, it has rich connectivity including two HDMI 1.4, a DisplayPort, and a mini-DisplayPort. The BenQ XR3501 VA panel offers superb 2,000:1 contrast ratio, 100% sRGB gamut, and rapid 4ms response time. Other goodies include the Black eQualizer which increases brightness for better visibility in darker games, exclusive gaming presets, and impressive input lag performance.
If you can spend a little bit extra or if you have an AMD FreeSync compatible GPU, go for the LG 34UC79G-B. This beauteous 34-inch ultra-wide gaming monitor features an IPS panel which lacks high contrast but makes up for it with better response time performance and color consistency. Additionally, the LG 34UC79G offers FreeSync and 1ms Motion Blur Reduction technologies which greatly improve the gameplay experience. Those with Nvidia GTX cards can get the G-SYNC version of this monitor, the LG 34UC89G.
Last but not least, the mighty Acer Predator Z35 with the fascinating 200Hz overclockable refresh rate. Based on the same AU Optronics’ VA panel as the BenQ XR3501, Acer has tinkered the Z35 to the extremes. With flawless input lag performance, 200Hz refresh rate, and Nvidia G-Sync technology, one might think that the Acer Z35 is adequate even for professional gaming.
Alas, since it is a VA panel, after all, motion blur is noticeable in fast-paced FPS games, so it’s not recommended for the high-end competitive gaming. Nevertheless, thanks to Nvidia’s ULMB technology (works at 80Hz, 100Hz, and 120Hz), you can reduce the perceptible motion blur and ghosting of the fast moving objects and still enjoy some casual FPS gameplay. In every other genre, the Acer Predator Z35 200Hz gaming monitor simply shines which is fair as it’s not intended for professional gaming anyway. Competitive gamers can jump straight to the bottom of the list and check out the cutting-edge displays aimed primarily at them.
Excellent UltraWide 1440p Curved Monitor
If you don’t care for scoreboards and killing blows, but would rather enjoy outstanding visuals and otherworldly scenery, have a look at the Dell UltraSharp U3415W. Sporting the stunning UWQHD 3440×1440 screen resolution, 10-bit IPS panel, and a subtle 3800R curve, the Dell U3415W is the monitor to get for those who enjoy gaming in a more peaceful and relaxing way.
Since this ultra-wide monitor also has a plethora of connectors and features as well as consistent and accurate colors, it’s also desirable for professional purposes. It’s fully ergonomic and has a gorgeous design while connectivity includes daisy-chaining DisplayPorts, HDMI 2.0 ports with MHL support, four downstream and two upstream USB 3.0 ports, and two 9W built-in speakers. Overall, the Dell U3415W has it all. It’s also available with a more aggressive 1900R curve and thinner bezels as the Dell UltraSharp U3417W.
Top UltraWide 1440p FreeSync Monitors
The ASUS Designo MX34VQ is an equally priced ultra-wide curved monitor with a bit stronger accent on gaming due to FreeSync technology and higher 100Hz refresh rate. It’s also quite gorgeous with thin bezels, but it has limited ergonomic support as it’s tilt-only (no VESA mount either). Moreover, it has no extra USB 3.0 ports, but it does offer three HDMI 2.0 ports and a DisplayPort as well as 2x8W speakers.
Unlike the Dell U3417W, the ASUS MX34VQ features an 8-bit VA panel by Samsung which offers higher contrast at 3,000:1 ratio for exceptionally deep black colors whereas Dell’s 10-bit panel has more vibrant colors overall. Both monitors are good in their own way, so it solely depends on your personal preference. If you have or plan to get a high-end AMD FreeSync GPU, the ASUS MX34VQ will offer you a smoother gaming experience whereas the Dell U3417W offers premium image quality and design.
The ASUS Designo MX34VQ 100Hz ultra-wide gaming monitor also offers the exclusive GamePlus feature (custom on-screen crosshairs and timers) while its base provides 5W/1A wireless charging capacity for compatible smartphones.
If you can spare some extra cash, consider the Samsung C34F791 which is very similar to the MX34VQ but it features the first-class quantum-dot technology which expands the contrast and color gamut to 125% sRGB. It has no built-in speakers, but the Samsung C34F791 offers full ergonomic support, two extra USB 3.0 ports, and a more aggressive 1500R curvature. It supports AMD FreeSync and 100Hz refresh rate as well.
If even 34-inch screen size is too small for you, Acer’s got you covered with their stunning 37.5-inch UWQHD gaming monitor with AMD FreeSync and up to 75Hz refresh rate – the Acer XR382CQK. This mesmeric and giant display offers the impeccable USB-C connectivity along with DisplayPort daisy-chaining and an HDMI 2.0 with MHL support. Its IPS panel ensures flawless colors with 100% sRGB gamut while the 3840×1600 (21:9 aspect ratio) screen resolution allows for maximum detail and immersion.
Best UltraWide 1440p G-SYNC Monitors 2018
This is where G-SYNC vs FreeSync monitor prices differ the most. The high-end ultra-wide curved gaming displays such as the ASUS ROG Swift PG348Q and the Acer Predator X34 cost nearly twice as much than the ASUS MX34VQ. All displays offer equivalent 3440×1440 screen resolution and 100Hz refresh rate, however, the G-SYNC ultra-wides feature an IPS panel instead of the VA which results in less ghosting and smearing of the fast moving objects. Unless you’re really impatient, we suggest waiting for the upcoming 200Hz ultra-wide gaming monitors to be released after which the price of these may drop as well.
There are slight differences between the ASUS PG348Q and the Acer X34, so unless you can’t make up your mind based on those differences, we recommend getting whichever is more affordable. Both monitors are fully ergonomic, while the Acer X34 has two extra USB 3.0 ports in comparison to the ASUS PG348Q. The ASUS ultra-wide G-SYNC monitor has a unique refresh turbo key feature which can change refresh rates between 60Hz and 100Hz whereas the X34 model is overclocked to 100Hz, but offers the GameView feature (also known as DarkBoost) for better visibility in darker games.
You can see the ultimate gaming monitor in action (the ASUS PG348Q gaming monitor) in the video below or you can Google it for more videos, or search for it on YouTube.
The Acer Predator Z35P is a great G-SYNC ultra-wide gaming monitor as well. Essentially, it’s the Z35 model we’ve already mentioned, but with higher screen resolution but lower refresh rate. With overclockable 120Hz, it’s the fastest UWQHD gaming monitor until the 2018 models arrive. The only thing the Z35P is missing is Nvidia’s ULMB technology which would make this monitor adequate for fast-paced gaming as well since its VA panel suffers from ghosting. Nevertheless, the image quality and performance are simply fascinating.
Amazing 49-inch HDR 144Hz Gaming Monitor
With the revolutionary Samsung C49HG90, you get a chunk of future when it comes to gaming display technology, though it may not be for everyone. The innovative 32:9 aspect ratio and 3840×1080 screen resolution aren’t yet supported by most video games, so you’ll have to stick to black borders on the sides or simply playing in the windowed mode. Sure, you could get two 1080p gaming monitors and put them side by side for a somewhat similar viewing experience, but the Samsung C49HG90 also offers plenty of cutting-edge features.
Based on a 49-inch VA panel, the monitor delivers rapid 1ms response time speed achieved via MPRT (Moving Picture Response Time) approach while still providing you with the superior 3,000:1 contrast ratio. Additionally, the Samsung CHG90 offers 144Hz refresh rate, pre-calibrated gaming modes, ambient lighting, full ergonomic support, a plethora of connectors, and it’s also the first display to utilize AMD FreeSync 2 technology.
The upgraded FreeSync allows for HDR support which along the quantum-dot technology delivers state-of-the-art image quality with extended contrast and color gamut range. Whether you want a display for professional use or immersive gaming, the Samsung CHG90 can do both, at the same time.
Cutting-Edge 240Hz Gaming Monitors
The Dell Alienware AW2518HF and the ASUS ROG Swift PG258Q offer everything a high-end professional and aspiring gamers need to reach the top. With respective adaptive-sync technologies, perfect input lag performance, and the impeccable 240Hz refresh rates along with rapid 1ms response time speed, there’s nothing to hold you back
Although the TN panel and 1920×1080 resolution make for a rather mediocre image quality for 2018, it’s the toll that needs to be paid for the flawless competitive gameplay performance. Both monitors feature premium designs with extensive ergonomics and connectivity options. The Dell AW2518HF offers FreeSync while the ASUS PG258Q offers G-SYNC technology, so pick the display according to your graphics card and you won’t be disappointed.
These are the best gaming monitors in 2017 as it stands right now. The other gaming monitors mentioned are the best in their respective category as well, so this guide should definitely cover you if you are looking for the best gaming monitor and you are wondering which one to buy. We hope that you found what you were looking for.
Let us know if you have a suggestion for another monitor who should have that title. We are open to all suggestions to our buying guide.
Overclockable 1440p Monitors
Note: Cheap 1440p overclockable displays can no longer be purchased from retailers so we have removed the section from our guide and have moved it here for legacy purposes.
The Crossover 2795 is a 27″ overclockable display with an IPS panel and a 1440p (WQHD) resolution. We previously recommended the QNIX 2710 in this section, but that product is no longer being sold on Amazon.com anymore and the Crossover 2795 is better since it delivers a sharper image and does not use LED PWM Dimming, which can be a headache at lower brightness levels due to the constant flickering. The Crossover 2795 is certainly one of the best gaming monitors for PC and certainly the best gaming monitor that can be overclocked easily to a higher refresh rate.
A DL DVI-D cable is required and adapters will most likely not work. You can overclock this monitor up to 120Hz, giving you a much smoother gameplay. A lot of people, however, found that it was most stable at a lower refresh rate, such as 100Hz, and you might encounter problems overclocking it all the way up to 120Hz, so beware of that before you buy this monitor.
If you’re looking for a 1440p monitor that you can overclock to 100Hz-120Hz, then this is certainly the best choice at the moment.
Best Gaming Monitor – Buyer’s Guide
Need the best gaming monitor? We hope this article helped you find the best gaming monitor for you. We made sure to appeal to as many gamers as possible by including a range variety of gaming displays with different features and sizes. We included 144Hz monitors, 1080p monitors, 1440p monitors, IPS monitors, 4K gaming monitors, competitive monitors and more. Also, if you are a competitive gamer, then we hope that you found the best monitor for competitive gaming in our buying guide.
Note that if you need the best gaming display for Playstation 4 (PS4), XBOX One, then check out our buying guide for those here: Best Console Gaming Monitor (PS4 and XBOX One). If you need the best gaming monitor for newer-generation consoles like the PlayStation 4 Pro (PS4 Pro) or the XBOX One S, we recommend getting a 4K display instead, since it is supported by these consoles, and we are sure you will like it. You will also have no need for a monitor upgrade for the Playstation Neo and the XBOX Scorpio as 4K UHD resolution is naturally supported on these as well. Note that if you choose to get a TV or gaming monitor, you can use an Android TV Box to play games on it as well.
Without further ado, we will now guide you into making the perfect purchase of the best gaming screen for you. Note that we also recommend you to get the best gaming chair 2017 if you wish to get a better gaming experience.
Which Gaming Monitor is the Best For Me?
If you are wondering: What is the best monitor for gaming? Then a general rule of thumb is that the more money you spend on a gaming monitor, the better it will be. This, of course, applies to almost all products, so it shouldn’t be a surprise. What you need to do is to find out what your budget is and what features you are especially looking for. There will most certainly be a trade-off between specifications and the price. Ergo, if you want the best gaming monitor, you are going to have to spend a lot of money on it as well. If you are willing to sacrifice some specifications for others that you simply do not need, then you can very well make a satisfactory purchase of an excellent gaming display without spending too much money. What you want is the best value monitor for your budget and needs.
Budget: $1000+ – The Best Overall Gaming Monitor
At this price range, you can either get a 1440p UltraWide 100Hz gaming monitor with G-SYNC support, a 4K G-SYNC monitor with 60Hz, or the innovative Samsung CHG90 HDR 144Hz gaming monitor.
You can save up for the Dell UP3017Q OLED monitor with the impeccable 0.1ms response time speed, stunning 4,000:1 contrast ratio, and 4K UHD resolution. Although this fascinating display was initially to feature 120Hz refresh rate as well, Dell released it with only up to 60Hz support though they reduced its price from $5,000 to $3,500.
If you are patient and want to future-proof your display as much as possible, wait for the upcoming 4K 144Hz or 3440×1440 200Hz gaming monitors with G-SYNC HDR.
At this price range, you can get a very good monitor for gaming and competitive gaming as well. You will be looking for either a 27-inch gaming monitor with 1440p (WQHD) resolution and a low input lag of under 15ms, an affordable 1440p ultra-wide display, or the impeccable 240Hz monitor for competitive gaming.
Also, if you are in the need for other components or hardware to build the best gaming PC, then be sure to check out our other buying guides. If you want to check out our dedicated monitor reviews, check them out as well.
Got a budget of 400 USD dollars to work with and looking for the best gaming monitor? In this guide, we have answered all of your questions regarding the top performing gaming displays out there today. For a budget of 400 USD, you can actually get a 1080p 144Hz monitor with G-SYNC, which is the Acer Predator XB241H, the best gaming monitor out there under 400 USD. You can also get a great 1440p display such as the Acer G257HU or save up to $100 for a 1440p 144Hz or a 2560×1080 ultra-wide monitor.
If you are on a low budget, you might still be in luck as some 144Hz gaming monitors can be bought for around 200 USD such as the ASUS VG248QE and the AOC G2460PF. You can even find excellent 144Hz gaming monitors under 200 dollars when they go on sale. If you have a budget of $200 and you want a 1440p display, you’ll have to save up a bit more (roughly $50) and get the Acer G257HU, which we consider to be the top WQHD monitor for the money in 2017. For displays under 200 USD, we recommend the Acer R240HY with flawless picture and performance due to its high-quality yet affordable IPS panel.
Should I Buy a 144Hz Monitor?
If you are wondering if you should buy a 144Hz gaming monitor (or above), you should first look at your graphics card. In order to take advantage of refresh rates, you must also get high frame rates in your games. If you can’t get above 60FPS, there’s obviously no point in getting a 144Hz gaming monitor. On the other hand, you are essentially future-proofing yourself by buying a 144Hz PC gaming monitor as most average gaming monitors don’t have 144Hz and you don’t replace your monitor as often as your PC components, such as your GPU. Perhaps you will buy a more powerful graphics card next year and your 60Hz monitor will not take benefit from the added frame rates above 60 frames per second.
If you are into competitive eSports gaming where fast reaction times are important, such as Counter-Strike: Global Offensive (CS:GO), you’ll definitely want a 144Hz refresh rate monitor or even beyond 144Hz, such as 165Hz, 180Hz or even 240Hz as these monitors also exist today, such as the ASUS ROG Swift PG258Q gaming display.
Which Response Time Should I Aim For?
If you are into TN monitors, you should aim for a 1ms response time. Response time is a factor of input lag, which also includes other factors as well and input lag is the most important factor for competitive gamers. Due to the nature of IPS and VA panels, you will most likely see them go as low as 4ms, which is also great. A lot of 4ms IPS monitors have been found to have lower response times than 1ms TN gaming monitors so don’t let these numbers fool you.
Should I Buy a 1080p Gaming Monitor, 1440p Gaming Monitor or a 4K Gaming Monitor?
As we are moving beyond 1080p resolution and graphics cards getting even more powerful, we recommend that you buy a monitor with at least 2560×1440 resolution (1440p, WQHD) in 2017. That way, you can still enjoy 144Hz and 165Hz gaming monitors, while also enjoying a larger resolution. 4K gaming monitors will also become mainstream later, but as of the beginning of 2017, they can only be found with support for a maximum of 60Hz. Perhaps, we’ll even see OLED monitors next year.
You should go for a 1080p resolution monitor if you only want a high refresh rate monitor, the resolution doesn’t matter to you or you are on a budget.
AMD FreeSync or NVIDIA G-SYNC
These technologies are also known as Adaptive-Sync. If your monitor supports Adaptive-Sync, you will not get any screen tearing and it will not come with any performance penalties, unlike V-Sync. If you have a FreeSync-compatible AMD graphics card, you should aim for a FreeSync monitor if you don’t want screen tearing. Likewise, if your NVIDIA GPU supports G-SYNC technology, you should aim for that if you have the budget for it.
AMD FreeSync will not add any cost to the original price of the monitor, whereas G-SYNC adds about $100-$150 to the original cost of the monitor without the technology. This is because G-SYNC requires the monitor to have a proprietary module inside it, whereas AMD does not.
Essentially, these technologies synchronize the refresh rate of the monitor with the output of frames that your graphics card produces. There’s always a range in which these technologies operate so try to see if you can find the range before purchasing your best gaming monitor.
Which Panel Technology Should I Get?
There are different types of panel technologies that you should be aware of and know the cons and pros of each one of them before searching for a gaming screen.
Let’s start with TN, which stands for Twisted Nematic. This panel technology produces the worst colors and viewing angles of all the others. On the flipside, they are cheap to produce and the response time can get as low as 1 millisecond.
VA, or Vertical Alignment, is another panel technology that sort of lies in the middle ground. AHVA is based on VA panel technology, but it is slightly better. VA panels benefit from high contrast ratios and the color quality is better than TN panels. Viewing angles are also better than TN panels, but not suited for work that requires good color accuracy.
Moving on, we have IPS panels, which are the preferred panel technology of 2017 until OLED becomes popular and mainstream. IPS panels have the best viewing angles and color accuracy but suffer from backlight bleed issues and IPS glow.
Finally, we have the best panel technology of all time, OLED (Organic Light Emitting Diode). They are not that mainstream today and very expensive as well because the factories producing them are mostly making them for smartphone displays. We expect this panel technology to become more and more popular as panel technologies evolve.
Is an UltraWide Gaming Monitor Worth It?
If you wish to have a more immersive gaming experience while gaming on your PC, you should buy an UltraWide gaming monitor if you have the budget. With this wider resolution, the game will feel closer to you and it’s overall a great experience on your UltraWide gaming monitor.
Note that not all games support the 21:9 aspect ratio so you’ll just get black bars. This also applies to competitive games, where having a wider monitor will gain you an advantage.
If you’re into normal gaming and perhaps want to use multiple monitors side-by-side, you should aim for a 16:9 Widescreen monitor as usual, but with thin bezels. You can read our recommendations above on the best UltraWide monitors.
HDR Gaming or Gaming Without HDR?
The main topic of CES 2017 was HDR and we will definitely be seeing HDR displays coming out soon, such as the ASUS ROG Swift PG27UQ and the Acer Predator XB272-HDR. Look out for FreeSync 2 and G-SYNC HDR as these technologies are the next generation of FreeSync and G-SYNC, and they support HDR as well.
More HDR monitors will definitely come and if you put HDR in an OLED monitor, you will get the ultimate display in terms of color quality. Initially, the price for HDR monitors will be high, but as time progresses and more units are available, the price is going to go down and we can all enjoy HDR gaming at an affordable price. The same principle applies to OLED as well.
You can read more about computer monitors on Wikipedia. Our extensive and thorough research on gaming monitors has allowed us to come up with the list of the best gaming monitors that you can buy today and that are available now. Our list includes 144Hz monitors, FreeSync displays, G-SYNC monitors, 4K gaming monitors and UltraWide displays as well.
Note: Comments are moved every month to the newest buying guide so a lot of comments may be old.
December 2016 Update: Added PS4 Pro and XBOX One S gaming monitors to the mix.
August 2016 Update: Added the ASUS PG348Q to the list, as it supports 100Hz with NVIDIA G-SYNC as well, just like the Acer Predator X34. Also added information about the upcoming Acer Predator X34P.
May 2016 Update: Major content addition and an update have been added to the first sections and there will also be happening some changes and additions to the remaining parts as well over the course of the next few days.
April 2016 Update: Updated the 1440p Overclocking Display recommendation to the Crossover 2795. This monitor beats the previously mentioned one, the QNIX 2710, in terms of image quality and pixel response time, and does not use LED PWM Dimming. Extra mini-update coming up to this guide in the middle of April 2016.
March 2016 Update: Replaced Acer Predator XB270HU with Acer Predator XB271HU, which is the newer version of the monitor. This gaming monitor is also a 144Hz monitor with 1440p resolution and a beautiful IPS panel. Truly the best gaming monitor 2016 if you enjoy these high-end specs.
December 2015 Update: A bunch of new FreeSync monitors is coming up next year, including FreeSync over HDMI compatible monitors. If they are fit for a section, they will be added accordingly.
November 2015 Update: News of the Acer XB271HU and XF270HU have been reflected in the article. Due to the fact that they are not yet available and therefore not tested by us, they will not be added to the table just yet.
October 2015 Update: We’ve mentioned the Acer R240HY down in the budget everyday/gaming monitor text section, but haven’t included it in the table due to the limited availability and quality control reports from buyers. The display is an excellent choice if you’re looking for a multi-monitor setup due to the thin bezels. The same applies to the Nixeus Vue-24 in the entry-level 144hz monitor and budget FreeSync monitor sections.
September 2015 Update: The release date of the Acer Predator X34 has been delayed to late October. You can see the promo videos of the Acer Predator X34 and the Acer Predator Z35 here.
August 2015 Update: It has been confirmed multiple times by Acer that the Acer Predator X34 indeed will have a maximum refresh rate of 100Hz with G-SYNC mode. This makes the Acer Predator X34 the almost perfect gaming monitor when it will be released in early September 2015.
July 2015 Update: Some links have been updated and optimized for each country. We have also added some new categories (UltraWide monitor and curved monitor categories) to better help you choose the best gaming monitor for your specific demands. Just decide which features are most valuable to you and then select one of the recommended monitors in the list below. Monitors in each category have been well researched and the specific ones listed below are the best. Also, note that several new G-Sync monitors have been announced, including UltraWide (21:9) and 144Hz displays, but they will be released next month, so we’ve chosen not to include them this month where appropriate. I recommend you to check them out if you are into G-Sync or the extra width you get from UltraWide monitors, and can wait for a little bit more for a new gaming monitor.