Unless you are an avid gamer, you probably would not know the difference between a gaming monitor and a regular one. A gaming monitor has a lot of different features in contrast to a standard monitor. After reading this article, you will be able to identify the aspects that are crucial for buying a monitor, especially if you’re a gamer.
There are several things a person needs to know about before buying a gaming monitor. These include things such as resolution, refresh rate, adaptive sync, panel technology, response time and screen size.
If you’re in the market for a gaming monitor, there are a few things you should check out and here is the ultimate guide to help you get the right monitor. Check out the five things mentioned below to help you identify which one would suit your needs better before you go out and buy one.
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Gaming monitors are available in several resolution in the market but three of them are the most commonly found — Ultra High Definition (UHD), Quad High Definition (QHD) and Full High Definition (FHD). The main difference between these resolutions is the number of pixels on the screen. A higher number of pixels provides a better picture. UHD has the highest pixels (4096×2160), QHD has slightly lower pixels (2560×1440), FHD has the lowest of the three (1920×1080). When buying a gaming monitor one should consider not only the pixels but also the pixel density. The pixel density refers to the number of pixels in one square inch of the screen. It is better to have a higher pixel density as it gives sharper pictures.
But having higher resolutions has significant drawbacks for gamers. When the screen resolution increases the FPS of the game drops because the GPU has to refresh a higher number of pixels, which can hamper the performance of the GPU unit. High-end GPUs like the Nvidia GeForce Titan RTX can manage to keep a 60 fps on highly demanding games.
So due to the reasons mentioned above, a person should go for a QHD screen or an FHD screen for a gaming monitor. Also, one should prefer smaller sizes as they give higher pixel densities leading to sharper images.
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The refresh rate of a monitor refers to the rate at which the information of pixels changes. Higher refresh rates mean that the pixels get updated at a higher frequency. For a gaming monitor one should consider higher refresh rates. As it shows more changes in the same amount of time. Gaming monitors come with various refresh rates(FPS) namely 60hz, 75Hz, 120hz, 144hz and 240hz. The human eye cannot detect lag when the FPS is over 60hz, but still one should go for 144hz as gives a better gaming experience.
Having a higher Refresh Rate poses one problem though. Higher refresh rates mean the GPU performs more tasks of updating pixels in a second. So, if one goes for a monitor with a refresh rate of 240hz, one should also have a monster GPU too to be able to take on the monitor as well as other tasks you throw its way.
Due to the reasons mentioned above, one should go for a monitor with a refresh rate of 144Hz if a high-performance GPU is not available. It is preferred to buy a 240 Hz if a GPU if higher specifications is available.
A lot of gaming monitors nowadays come with adaptive sync. Adaptive sync helps to reduce screen tearing. There are two leading adaptive sync technologies available — one by AMD and the other by Nvidia.
These two sync technologies work with their respective GPUs. The Nvidia G-sync increases the cost of the monitor by about $100, whereas the AMD free sync does not bump the value of the monitor.
The Panel Technology
There are two-panel technologies, namely IPS and TN. The TN panel gives lower response times which are crucial for a gamer but do not provide a great viewing angle. The IPS, on the contrary, gives relatively better viewing angles with higher response times. This higher response time is in the order of microseconds, so it does not make a big difference. So, IPS and TN are almost the same with IPS having a better viewing angle.
Pixel response time is measured in milliseconds (ms), and it represents how much time a single-pixel needs to switch from black to white or switch between different shades of grey. Generally, the lower the response time, smoother the camera movements. On the other hand, high response time will lead to motion blur since pixels don’t have enough time to switch between colours during fast camera movement.
Now, as mentioned above, TN panels support lower response times while IPS panels provide higher response times. Which one you choose depends entirely on whether you prefer responsiveness or visual quality.
Hoping this guide helps you choose the best monitor available out there that suits your needs and doesn’t cost a fortune. Let us know if you feel there are more aspects one should look at while buying a gaming monitor in the comments below.
A tech enthusiast, driven by curiosity. A bibliophile who loves to travel. An Engineering graduate who loves to code and write about new technologies. Can’t sustain without coffee.