What To Look For In A Gaming Monitor – The Ultimate Guide

The gaming monitor market is full of choices these days. You can find a huge range of monitors, with all sorts of features, at all sorts of price points. So, how do you know which one is right for you?

I spent a whole day searching for the best info, to help you make the right choice.

 Here’s what to look for when shopping for a gaming monitor.

Screen Size and Resolution
Refresh Rate
What is it?
Video Signal Refresh Rate vs Screen Refresh Rate
How do Refresh Rates Impact Gaming?
What Are Standard Refresh Rates?
Are Refresh Rates Important for Other Types of Monitors?
What Is The Difference Between Hz and FPS?
What’s so important about refresh rates?
What about people who don’t play games?
Response Time
Overshoot
Ghosting
Motion Blur Reduction
ELMB (Extreme Low Motion Blur)
Type Of Panel
G-Sync & FreeSync
Connectors
How Much Should I Spend?
What to do next?

Screen Size and Resolution

The screen size and resolution of your gaming monitor greatly affect how immersive the experience is. Since you are playing for a long period of time, it is important to find a balance between visual clarity and comfortability.

A smaller screen provides a more comfortable viewing distance due to its lower pixel density which makes the pixels feel larger, making it easier to see them not as individual pixels. This creates the effect of seeing more at once, making the game feel less 3D and blurry than if you had a larger screen. However, because smaller screens have significantly lower pixel densities than larger ones(1080p vs 1440p), they produce an image that is much more pixelated or jagged than the larger ones.

A larger screen size, on the other hand, allows you to see more at once and create an image that is less pixelated. This results in a 3D effect where game objects look like they are actually far away instead of just appearing like small dots on your screen. However, because resolution scales exponentially, a 24-inch 1080p monitor is more immersive than a 27 inch 1440p one. 

Anything higher resolution would have to be watched from a distance, and anything smaller  wouldn’t benefit as much from high resolutions.

Which size you choose depends on which you value more: seeing more of the screen at once or fewer pixels. If you are looking for a more immersive experience, then go for a larger screen size; if you want to be able to see the details of the game better, then choose a smaller screen. It is important to keep in mind that not all games are the same and some may require you to have a larger or smaller screen than what is mentioned here.

Resolution is incredibly important when it comes to monitors, and especially gaming monitors. The resolution is the number of pixels that are displayed on the screen, and it’s measured in Width x Height. So, a 1920×1080 monitor has a resolution of 1920 pixels wide and 1080 pixels high.

The higher the resolution, the sharper the image will be. This is why gamers often upgrade to 4K monitors, as they offer resolutions of 3840×2160 – four times that of a standard 1080p monitor. However, not all games are optimized for 4K resolutions, so you might want to consider whether or not you actually need one before making the investment.

Refresh Rate

What is it?

A monitor’s refresh rate (also called “screen refresh rate, screen flicker frequency, and scan frequency) measures how often the image on one screen will be updated. It’s measured in hertz (Hz). So if a monitor is described as having a 60 Hz refresh rate, this means that the image is refreshed and redrawn 60 times in a second (60 times per second or fps).

Video Signal Refresh Rate vs Screen Refresh Rate

The video signal being sent to the monitor has nothing to do with what you see on your screen. The video card sends data to the monitor through three types of signals: VESA Display Data Channel Command Interface (DDC/CI), HDMI, and DP.

The refresh rate of the monitor is set by the monitor itself, not the video card. The only time the video card has any control over it is if you’re using Nvidia’s G-Sync or AMD’s FreeSync technologies.

How do Refresh Rates Impact Gaming?

Refresh rates are important for gaming because they impact a number of factors including motion resolution, screen tearing, and responsiveness.

Motion Resolution: The higher the refresh rate, the higher the motion resolution will be. This is because with a higher refresh rate, more frames are displayed per second, which results in smoother animation and less blurring.

Screen Tearing: Screen tearing when part of two different frames is displayed on the screen at once. This can be seen in action games when you move the camera quickly. The result is V-Sync input lag because the monitor displays half of one frame and half of another, resulting in a delay between what you see and what your inputs will do.

Responsiveness: Refresh rates also impact responsiveness because lower refresh rates require more time for each frame to render, which means that it takes longer for each frame to travel to the monitor itself. As a result, there’ll be more latency between game inputs occurring and what they’re displayed as on-screen (if you shoot someone in PUBG, it might take several milliseconds before their body reacts).

What Are Standard Refresh Rates?

Most monitors have a refresh rate of 60 Hz, but there are some that offer 120 Hz. If you’re looking to purchase a gaming monitor, you’ll want one with a high refresh rate. The most common refresh rates for gaming monitors are 120hz, 144hz, and 240hz.

Are Refresh Rates Important for Other Types of Monitors?

Standard or non-gaming monitors don’t require as high of a refresh rate as gaming monitors because they don’t need to reduce screen tearing or improve motion resolution. However, having a higher refresh rate is still beneficial because it means that the monitor can handle more frames per second, which results in smoother animation and less blurring.

What Is The Difference Between Hz and FPS?

Hz (refresh rate) is the number of times per second that a new frame is drawn on the screen. FPS (frames per second) is the number of frames that are being sent to the monitor each second. So, if you have a 60hz monitor, it will take 16.7 ms for each frame to be displayed twice, which means that it can handle up to 60 fps. If you have a 120hz monitor, it will take 8.3 ms for each frame to be displayed twice, which means that it can handle up to 120 fps.

What’s so important about refresh rates?

Well, as we’ve seen, there are a number of factors that are impacted by the refresh rate. Higher refresh rates mean that you’ll see less screen tearing, smoother animation, and a more responsive gaming experience. As such, if you’re looking for a gaming monitor, you’ll want one that has a high refresh rate. If you already have a monitor, and it doesn’t have a high refresh rate, you can still benefit from upgrading to a gaming monitor.

What about people who don’t play games?

Even if you don’t play games, having a monitor with a high refresh rate is still beneficial. This is because it means that the monitor can handle more frames per second, which results in smoother animation and less blurring. So, if you’re looking for a new monitor or are in the market for a gaming monitor, make sure to get one with a high refresh rate.

Response Time

Response time is the amount of time it takes for a pixel on a monitor to change from black to white (or any other color) and then back to black again. This is also sometimes referred to as pixel response time or gray-to-gray response time. When it comes to gaming, the lower the response time, the better. This is because it means that pixels will change colors more quickly, which means that images will appear smoother and there will be less motion blur.

Another factor that can affect response time is overdrive. Overdrive is a technology that is used to speed up the response time of pixels. It does this by making them respond more quickly to changes in color. However, overdrive can also cause artifacts such as overshoot and ghosting.

Overshoot

Overshoot is when a pixel goes past the intended color and ends up being a different color. For example, if you have a black background with a white object on it, and the response time is too slow, the object may end up appearing green or purple because it will take longer for the pixel to change from black to white than from white to black. This can be quite distracting and can ruin the gaming experience.

Ghosting

Ghosting is another issue that can be caused by slow response times. Ghosting occurs when there is more than one image on the screen at once. This is often caused by fast-moving objects on the screen. The image of the object will leave a trail behind it, which can be quite distracting.

Motion Blur Reduction

One way to reduce the amount of motion blur that is caused by slow response times is through the use of motion blur reduction technology. This technology works by flashing the screen very quickly, which causes the image to be displayed for a very short amount of time. This reduces the amount of time that the image is on the screen, which reduces the amount of motion blur that is seen. There are a few different types of motion blur reduction technology, such as NVIDIA’s ULMB (Ultra Low Motion Blur) and AMD’s ELMB (Extreme Low Motion Blur).

ELMB (Extreme Low Motion Blur)

AMD’s ELMB is a type of motion blur reduction technology that is designed to reduce the amount of motion blur that is caused by slow response times. It does this by flashing the screen very quickly, which causes the image to be displayed for a very short amount of time. This reduces the amount of time that the image is on the screen, which reduces the amount of motion blur that is seen. AMD’s ELMB is available on a number of their graphics cards, such as the Radeon RX 480 and Radeon RX 570.

Type Of Panel

There are three main types of computer monitor panels: TN, IPS, and VA. Each panel type has its own strengths and weaknesses.

TN panels are the most common type of panel. They offer fast response times and low prices. However, TN panels have narrow viewing angles and can produce color distortion at off-center angles.

When choosing a computer monitor, TN screens offer the best performance for gamers. TN panels have fast response times and low prices which make them a great choice for PC gaming. TN monitors also tend to be the most common type of display in mainstream laptops, offering decent image quality at an affordable price. However, TN panels have narrow viewing angles and can produce color distortion at off-center angles when compared with other types of panels. Due to these limitations, TN monitors are not recommended for professional applications such as a photo or video editing since accurate colors and wide viewing angles are important to those fields of work.

IPS panels offer wide viewing angles and accurate colors at all angles. However, they have slower response times than TN panels and can be more expensive.

IPS monitors have good all-around viewing angles and accurate colors at all angles, making them a good choice for general use. IPS panels also offer a wide range of screen sizes, from small portable monitors to large-screen displays. In addition, IPS monitors are often less expensive than VA panels. However, IPS panels typically have slower response times than TN panels, which can be an issue for gaming or other activities that require fast reflexes.

VA panels offer the best of both worlds: fast response times and wide viewing angles. However, they can sometimes produce color distortion at extreme angles. VA panels are also the most expensive type of panel.

VA panels offer the best of both worlds: fast response times and wide viewing angles. VA panels are great for multitasking and gaming because they minimize the amount of color distortion at extreme angles. VA panels are also the most expensive type of panel. If you’re looking for a monitor with great image quality and don’t mind spending a bit more, VA is the way to go.

Ultimately, the best panel type for you depends on your individual needs and preferences. TN panels are great for gamers and people who need fast response times, while IPS panels are a better option for photographers and designers. If you want the best image quality possible, VA is the way to go. However, be aware that VA panels have some downside like color distortion at extreme angles and higher price tags. So before making a purchase, consider what your priorities are and what type of panel would be best suited for you.

 G-Sync & FreeSync

G-Sync is a proprietary technology from NVIDIA that requires a special module to be installed in your monitor. This module allows the monitor to communicate with your graphics card, and tell it when to start and stop refreshing the image on the screen.

Freesync is an open standard that any manufacturer can use, provided they include support for it in their products. Because of this, you’ll find Freesync monitors available from a number of different manufacturers.

 So which one should you choose? It largely depends on what type of hardware you have. If you have an AMD graphics card, then Freesync is the obvious choice, as G-Sync only works with NVIDIA cards. If you already have a G-Sync monitor, then there’s no reason to switch, as you’ll get the benefits of that technology.

If you don’t have either of those things, though, and are looking to buy a new monitor, then Freesync is the better option. It’s cheaper than G-Sync, and it works with more graphics cards.

 In the end, it comes down to what your priorities are. If screen tearing is a major issue for you and money isn’t an object, go for a G-Sync monitor. If price is more important or if screen tearing isn’t a big deal, go for a Freesync monitor instead.

Connectors 

Connectors are important to consider when choosing a gaming monitor because they dictate what kind of devices you can connect to the monitor. The most common connectors are HDMI, DVI, VGA, and DisplayPort.

HDMI is a common connector found on gaming monitors. It’s a versatile connector that can transmit both audio and video signals. This makes it a good choice for connecting gaming consoles and Blu-ray players to the monitor.

DVI is another common connector found on gaming monitors. It’s a digital connector that can transmit video signals without any loss in quality. This makes it a good choice for connecting PCs to the monitor.

VGA is an analog connector that’s been around for a long time. It’s a simple connector that can transmit video signals of lower quality. This means it’s only useful for connecting PCs to the monitor.

DisplayPort is another common connector found on gaming monitors. It’s similar to HDMI in that it covers both audio and video transmission, but its main advantage over HDMI is speed. DisplayPort can handle high-definition video at 60 frames per second while HDMI tops out at 30 fps. This makes it a good choice for connecting PCs to the monitor with high-resolution content being displayed.

It doesn’t matter if you’re shopping for your home or office, computer accessories are essential parts of any system build or equipment upgrade. Even better, they’re available wherever electronics are sold for a fraction of the cost you might expect.

As with any computer device, your experience may vary if you are using aftermarket parts. While this may be true to some degree, most standard devices are quite similar and will fit into the same socket types or plug into compatible ports.

How Much Should I Spend?

This is a question that a lot of people ask, especially when they’re new to gaming. It can be tough to figure out how much you should spend on a gaming monitor, graphics card, or any other piece of hardware.

It all depends on what you want and what your budget is. If you’re more focused on FPS rather than a gorgeous display, then you don’t need to spend as much money on your monitor. You can get a great quality monitor for a third of the price of a high-end model.

But if you want the best of the best, be prepared to pay for it. The latest high-end gaming monitors can retail for well over $2,000. However, there are still great options available for those on a budget.

So, how much should you spend? It really depends on what you want. But don’t be afraid to invest in a good quality gaming monitor – it will make your gaming experience that much better.

What to do next?

This guide has gone over some of the more prominent monitor features that you should be aware of if you want to know what to look for in a gaming monitor. We hope this helps!