Things to Consider when Choosing a Gaming Monitor
Every Gamer has their own dream about the perfect Gaming Computer. It would be a perfect amalgamation of high-end hardware and software support. And, there are a few factors that every Gamer looks for — such as GPU, Processor, RAM and SSD Storage. However, we believe that many people miss one of the important factors in the selection — namely the Monitor. What’s the point of having the latest, best GPU if you do not have a compatible Monitor?
Obviously, random choice isn’t the option here. You don’t necessarily have to go for branded gaming monitor from the list. Instead, there are some monitors with impressive hardware specifications and features. So, no matter what you look for, you can judge the choices by some common factors. In this article, we have listed out the main things to consider when choosing a Gaming Monitor — or say, the best monitor for gaming.
Panel Technology — IPS, VA and TN?
While talking about Gaming Monitors, the panel technology is something of important. It’s how contents are displayed on the screen. The most popular and commonly seen Panel Technologies are as follows. And, the selection should be based on the game you’re going to play as well. IPS vs VA vs TN is a hot topic of discussion among gamers.
- IPS — IPS stands for In-Plane Switching and the priciest one in the group. Although it offers the best Viewing Angles and Color Accuracy, Pixel Response time is comparatively lower. If you are playing a competitive FPS Game, you might find some motion blur.
- VA — VA in Panel Technology world means Vertical Alignment. The most important advantage of VA Panels is the best contrast ratio and representation of black areas. You also have the benefits of color representation. The downside here is the ghosting effect.
- TN — Twisted Nematic is the mostly found and popular Panel Technology in the group. For one, TN can offer you the best response time. It is compared with the major downside of poor viewing angle and color reproduction. This is suitable if you have a competitive FPS game.
Depending on your preference and requirement, pick the right Display Panel Technology from the trio. If you give more value to the viewing angles, we recommend going for IPS. Yet, if color reproduction and response time — which we’ll discuss in detail — are the ones that matter, go for TN or VA.
Nevertheless, there are some exceptional choices in the market. Some manufacturers like Acer have blended the power of Viewing Angle and response time into IPS Display monitors. So, it’s also about how much you’d search before choosing.
Screen Size and Resolution
These things become even more important when you need a monitor for ultimate gaming. If we’d consider the case of Screen Size, the choice is completely personal. Some people need an immersive experience for gameplay, whereupon bigger monitors are recommended. On the other hand, if you need a quality screen that may compromise immersive feel, you have option for that too. It basically depends upon how much you can spend as well. On a practical note, you should not go for anything lower than 20”. In fact, we recommend something around 22” to 24”. That having said, for those who need the bigger feel, choices are there at 27” as well.
You cannot choose Screen Resolution based on your choice. First of all, make sure you have compatible set of hardware for the resolution you’re looking for. If you have one of the current, decent GPUs, you will have no trouble in running the game in 1080p Resolution without lag. So, first and foremost, you can look out for a 1080p Full HD Monitor. There are further options like Quad HD and UHD. It goes without saying, you have to pay more for advanced technologies and better screen resolutions. If you need 4K Gaming Monitors— that is UHD —, first be sure to check if your GPU supports 4K rendering.
If you have talked with hardcore gamers, they would know how Refresh Rate impacts the gaming experience. It needs to be noted that Refresh Rate and Pixel Response Time are entirely different things. If we go by the common definition, Refresh Rate is the number of refreshes required for creating another image on screen. Practically speaking, this can impact the clarity of the visual that you see on the screen. If the refresh rate is low, there may be some blurry sequences, which isn’t good for intensive gaming. You may also have issues of screen tearing and the lack of smooth gameplay.
Considering all these things, higher refresh rate is always better. Refresh Rate is measured in Hertz and the common LCD monitors come with 60Hz Refresh Rate. This, however, isn’t suitable for high-end games and the total smooth experience. You should always go beyond the 60Hz Limit, and it’s always recommended to go for 144Hz Gaming Monitors. By doing so, you can get rid of screen tearing issues as well. If you want more explanation, here is our comparison of 60Hz vs 120Hz vs 240Hz Monitors.
Pixel Response Time is another factor that decides smooth gameplay through the monitor. Response Rate is the time required by the monitor to shift from one grey shade to another shade. This becomes essential if you are playing some intense games, where color reproduction is the main key. As you can guess, the lower response time the monitor has, the better gaming experience you would end up having. And, that said, there are a few biases when it comes to finding the actual response time of a monitor.
If you ask us for recommendations, we would say the optimal Response Time is 1 Millisecond. Of course, you have to pay a lot more such monitors. Don’t worry; if you can get a monitor with a response time of less than 6 Milliseconds, it’s going to be awesome.
Some Miscellaneous Features
If you get a monitor with FreeSync or G-Sync technology, you can have a dynamic Refresh Rate. This helps the removal of screen tearing, by adjusting the refresh rates to what your GPU is producing. You may even want to choose between FreeSync VS G-Sync at times, depending on what you need.
- You should check the compatible methods of connectivity. Most Gaming monitors come with HDMI Connectivity and you must not go below that standard. Even better, if you can afford, you can get a laptop with DisplayPort support. This will give you the benefits of extended bandwidth and smoother gameplay ahead.
- You can also choose between LCD Monitors and LED Monitors, according to what you need and how much you can spend. You will find some slight yet good-in-the-long-run differences.
- Viewing Angle is also important, if you are going to set up multiplayer gaming or multi-monitor set-up. As we said earlier, IPS Panel gives you the best viewing angles but lets you down when it comes to refresh rates.
Well, these are the most important things to consider when choosing a gaming monitor. It’s not advised to make all these decisions when you’re in the store. Instead, you have to do thorough research about possible monitor choices. Then, depending on the shortlist you have created, it will be easier to select the best gaming monitor for you.