Pull up your preferred search engine and type in ‘the best gaming monitor’ and you’ll be bombarded with an assortment of advertisements for sales, expensive monitors with the latest (but ultimately useless) features such as extra USB ports, etc… Really, who’s looking for a top quality gaming monitor and doesn’t have an equally nice case with plenty of USB 2 and 3?
Sure the little extra features can be nice to have just in case, but they aren’t what you should be basing your purchase on. Picking out a top-notch gaming monitor takes a bit of research and time. After all, there’s a lot to consider.
Gamer’s typically find that their monitor needs are quite different from the other computer enthusiast’s. If you’re like most gamers, you’ve got a few hundred to a few thousand invested in your case components already. But even if you’ve built the best gaming PC, it isn’t enough without a monitor.
A subpart gaming monitor makes all of this fancy tech practically useless. If the screen can’t keep up with the processors, refresh rate, etc… then your experience will be severely limited.
We’ve put together this guide to help you navigate your way through the sea of seemingly endless monitor models. So if you’re ready to jump straight into a list of the absolute best gaming monitors available right now, read on! We’ll even explain the differences in features so that you can decide which one is the perfect monitor for you!
What To Consider When Choosing The Best Gaming Monitor?
It’s a common misconception that when it comes to gaming, bigger means better. This isn’t necessarily true, however. A large monitor without the appropriate specs to run heavy duty game software will be a huge disappointment for gamers. This situation typically results in flickering, ghosting, graphic tears, etc… It is important to check out each of the following specs and features before making your purchase. This will ensure that you get the most out of your gaming monitor, for years to come!
Gaming monitors between 19 inches and 24 inches are considered the sweet spot for gaming. That doesn’t necessarily mean that a larger monitor won’t work well. Part of the problem in choosing a size is technical, but it’s also a matter of personal preference.
A lot of gamers make the mistake of going as big as they can afford to, however; thinking that it will create a more immersive experience. Rather, it can make it difficult to keep track of motion along the screen sides (such as enemy flanking) and can cause a host of other complications such as flickering or resolution problems.
Consider how much power your system itself has before buying a new monitor. This is the best way to gauge whether or not your new gaming monitor will work optimally with the rest of your gear.
Gaming Monitor Resolution
When it comes to resolution considerations, you can always count on it that monitors with higher resolution (or higher density of pixels on the screen display) will provide you with higher definition. Assuming that you have the right PC gear to run it.
Don’t be fooled into thinking that anything labeled High Definition will get the job done. High Definition offers a pixel count of 1920 x 1080 (aka 1080p). The number of pixels does not change based upon the increase or decrease of screen size. They simply become smaller/larger as appropriate to fit.
So smaller HD screens provide greater clarity than larger ones. However, if you’re interested in the 25”+ size gaming monitors you can always go with QHD which offers a pixel count of 2560 x 1440 (aka 1440p). Most gamers prefer to stick with the QHD resolution, even for monitors smaller than 25” because of the depth of detail that it provides.
There are other forms of HD available as well, such as UHD which provides 3840 x 2160 pixels. While 4K UHD, QHD, WQHD, etc. are less common amongst computer monitors, they are becoming increasingly easier to find. These display resolutions are fantastic for larger monitors, so long as you ensure that your PC itself is powerful enough to handle the task.
To learn more on how to decode HD-speak, check out this great guide on the differences.
LED vs LCD
Choosing between an LED and an LCD monitor is mainly a matter of user preference. It basically boils down to a matter of the difference in color quality, and the range of contrast. Most gamers prefer an LED; but if you’re on a budget an LCD can still definitely get the job done. There are a surprising number of technologies that go into LCD panels, which you can read more about here.
If you predominantly play colorful, vibrant games on your PC, an LCD will do the job nicely, in fact. However, if you play a wide range of games with varying contrast and color temperatures, you’ll be much happier with an LED.
What’s the actual difference? Not much. An LED monitor is an LCD with additional backlighting. When you’re playing a dark palette game with high density shadows, shading, etc. however, this small difference can mean a lot.
Response Rates of a Gaming Monitor
You’re jamming through your favorite platformer, everything is going according to plan – and suddenly you’re dead. And you have no idea what happened. Sound familiar?
This is what happens when your monitor doesn’t have a fast enough response rate. The time that it took to render the images of your attackers was greater than the amount of time that it took them to kill you. There practically is no greater frustration in gaming.
Avoid tech rage by checking the response rate of the monitor your considering, before you buy. Ideally, you want a range of 5 milliseconds or less; with 1 millisecond being the best.
Although they are frequently confused with response rates, refresh rates are completely different. The refresh rate is the rate at which frames update while you are playing. While you won’t ‘lose’ any time in the game if your frame rates are low, you will likely experience graphic tears.
You’ve probably seen this before on a standard 60Hz monitor. The graphics appear to have rifts; or missing sections. As a result, graphics appear in ‘chunks’.
For gaming, you’ll want to avoid 60Hz completely. Consider something in the 120Hz or 144Hz range (or higher) instead.
14 Best Gaming Monitors in 2018
ASUS ROG Strix XG258Q
The Best PC Gaming Monitor by Asus
The ASUS ROG Strix XG258Q offers flexible connectivity options with DisplayPort, HDMI 2.0 and HDMI 1.4.
The Adaptive Sync/FreeSync capacity ensures smooth gameplay by eliminating screen tearing and stuttering. Additionally, ASUS Eye Care technology makes marathons even easier, reducing eyestrain and other visual problems with TUV Rheinland-certified blue light filter and flicker-free backlighting.
Game-grade ergonomics such as tilt, pivot, swivel and height adjustments allow you to play like a pro in your comfort zone, no matter how you prefer to game.
Despite the mid-to-low range price, this monitor behaves like one of the top guns.
You’re sure to be blown away by the crisp, clean imagery and the adjustable viewing settings. With easy to navigate menus, you can adjust your backlights, screen views, and much more with ease.
- 24.5″ Full HD (1920x1080p) panel
- Native 240Hz refresh rate
- Aura RGB lighting
- ASUS Eye Care
- Adaptive Sync/FreeSync
- 1 millisecond response time
- Frameless design
- Customizable LED lighting effect
- Metal stand for superior support
- Durable feel
- The screens can become overly bright on some settings
- Blue light filter requires the Racing preset and cannot be used on other presets
Acer Predator XB321HK
Ranked the Best 1440p Gaming Monitor of the Year
The Acer Predator XB321HK is one of those slightly rarer models that we discussed earlier- a 4K UHD; or 3840 x 2160-pixel count. This is essential for a gaming monitor of this size, if you expect to have any image quality.
Remember, increased screen size doesn’t mean more pixels. Increased resolution is what balances out increased screen size. This 32-inch NVIDIA GSYNC, widescreen display is also equipped with the finest LED tech so that you can see even the finest detail and depths of color in your gaming experience.
Acer’s EyeProtect Flicker-less tech helps take the strain off of your eyes during long periods of gaming. All the while, a 4ms response time and 180 Hz of refresh power ensure that you have a seamless, smooth gaming experience on this huge, immersive gaming monitor.
This Acer monitor has 2 signal input options, for your convenience.
- 1 HDMI
- 1 (v1.2) Display port
- Mercury-free white LED backlights reduce power consumption by roughly 65%
- Excellent, ergonomic design that is adjustable for your comfort
- Includes extra features such as speakers, 4 extra USB 3 ports, etc…
- Some users experience problems with using the HDMI 1 port
Great Value for Money
The Asus VP28UQG gaming monitor offers a 28″ display with 4K/UHD capacity and an ultra-fast 1 millisecond response time. As well, gamers will enjoy the Adaptive Sync/AMD FreeSync software for immersive, crisp visuals.
The monitor also features DisplayPort and dual HDMI connectivity for gamers to connect in multiple ways. The innovative ASUS Eye Care technology lowers blue light to near non-existence and eliminates flickering to reduce eyestrain and ailments.
The 5-Way OSD joystick on the back of the monitor delivers intuitive monitor controls so you can access features such as ASUS GamePlus on-the-fly.
Exclusive GamePlus and GameVisual settings enhance color performance and control to adapt to each gamer’s need.
ASUS also includes their Rapid Replacement 3-year warranty service with free cross-shipping in the event there is anything wrong with the monitor, which serves as a testament to their staunch support of such a sturdy monitor.
- Competitive 16:9 aspect ratio
- 3840 x 2160 pixel display resolution maximum
- LED-lit screen
- Slightly heavy at 10.1lbs
- 28-inch screen
- Cheap price for an exceptional monitor
- Large screen size for competitive gamers
- Screen often needs to ‘warm-up’ before use or colors aren’t as crisp
- Limited in up and down movements with no tilt capacity
Yet Another of the Best 1440p Gaming Monitor Options
This 1440p wide quad HD, 27-inch gaming monitor is sure to impress. It’s packed with all of the necessities for gaming; and has a 2-millisecond response rate, which ensures that you’ll have the smoothest graphic experience possible. While this monitor is an LCD; which is devoid of the highly preferred LED backlighting. However, it is equipped with a Dark Boost function which is designed to help you target enemies lurking in the shadows.
One of our favorite things about this particular gaming monitor is the ‘Game’ mode setting. This setting utilizes optimization tech that increases visuals for FPS, MOBA, and RTS. Other cool extra features include; an awesomely ergonomic stand, adaptive contrast control, integrated headphone hook, and NVIDIA GSYNC technology.
Overall, this monitor is a really great deal and we think it’s perfect for gamers looking for a top-shelf setup without a top shelf price. It’s difficult to find a deal quite like this for under a thousand.
- Multiple display types
- Excellent refresh and response rates
- 2 quality built in speakers
- No LED backlighting
Great Monitor With HDR
Immerse yourself in a 35″ screen and 3440×1440 resolution with 1800R curvature, for panoramic entertainment with the BenQ EX3501R gaming monitor.
With its High Dynamic Range technology, the monitor offers greater brightness and contrast level, bringing an incredibly detailed image performance.
Despite the high price tag, this gaming monitor is worth the buy. Using USB-C, you can enable SuperSpeed USB data transfer and 2K video delivery over a single cable, which is incredibly convenient for those who will use their monitors for work as well as gaming.
The height and tilt adjustments along with Brightness Intelligence Plus Technology provide supreme and ergonomic viewing comfort. The AMD Free Sync empowers intensely smooth gameplay while eliminating choppy tearing and broken frames to keep your view unblemished.
The BenQ has the technology to determine the ambient light you’re working in and adjusts the brightness accordingly to stave off unnecessary eye strain.
- 3440×1440 resolution
- 1800R curvature
- 35″ screen
- SuperSpeed USB data transfer compatible
- 2K video delivery over a single cable
- 21:9 aspect ratio
- Fast refresh rate
- High resolution
- Ultra-wide view
- High Dynamic Range technology
- The menu isn’t intuitive and can be tricky to use
- The screen can lag slightly
Huge Gaming Monitor With Fast Refresh Rate
Dell’s Alienware AW3418DW gaming monitor offers a unique 34″ curved design with super high 21:9 ratio and 1900 Radius, which maximizes your field of view.
The new AW3418DW provides the ultimate gaming immersion. With its fast 120Hz refresh rate when overclocked combined with 4 millisecond response time, it delivers buttery-smooth gameplay.
This breakthrough display technology eliminates screen tearing and minimizes display stutter and input lag to deliver the smoothest, fastest, most breathtaking gaming experience with a serious competitive edge.
Designed for the enthusiast, the AW3418DW delivers a futuristic style and precise form with solid stability.
Customizable AlienFX with 4 different lighting zones provides an amazingly personalized, dynamic look to make your monitor reflect your style and deliver deeper immersion in the game.
Your gaming experience never looked better than when viewed on the Alienware AW3418DW gaming monitor. With the curvature and crisp, clean view, you will not regret making this purchase.
- 21:9 aspect ratio
- 120Hz refresh rate
- 4 millisecond response time
- Fast refresh rate
- Large, curved monitor
- 3-year manufacturer warranty
- Incredibly durable monitor and stand build
- Some users have reported backlight bleed
- G-Sync module can cause flickering when overclocked above 100hz
- Heavier than competitors at 26.14 lbs
Certainly Amongst the Best 1080p Gaming Monitor Choices
For those curved LED screen enthusiasts out there, this is an incredible gaming monitor. At 35 inches and a 178 degree viewing angle, this is definitely one of the largest, best gaming monitors out there. Especially for the price! You won’t find another curved screen this large at this price – anywhere.
This particular monitor boasts 160Hz refresh rate, which is well over the recommended specs for a top notch gaming monitor such as this one. When paired with the integrated 4 millisecond refresh rate, you have a pretty decent set up going; in spite of the relatively low resolution of 2560 x 1080 for this extra-large monitor.
- Integrated dynamic contrast ratio makes a much more dramatic display
- Extra-large screen for players who prefer to see every single detail
- Affordable curved screen technology
- Low resolution for screen size, pixel enlargement may be bothersome
BenQ ZOWIE XL2720
The Best PC Gaming Monitor BenQ Makes!
Easily the absolute best monitor for gaming that BenQ makes; the ZOWIE XL2720 is definitely getting some well-deserved attention from the gaming community.
With a resolution of 1080p (1920 x 1080 pixels) and the best response and refresh rates around, this monitor is ready to play all of your favorite games with clarity, color accuracy, and real life-like details. The LED backlighting nicely accentuates this large, 27-inch screen, making it easy to see even the darkest corners of dungeons while playing.
While this monitor is great for any game you may desire to play on your PC, it’s specialty is definitely e-sports PC games. In fact, this monitor has been named the official gaming monitor worldwide for e-sports games; including illustrious competitions such as; ESEA, UMG, EVO, and MLG CS:GO Major Championship.
With so much confidence from the gaming community, you really can’t go wrong with a monitor like this. If word of mouth isn’t enough for you, however, there are many other great features and specs to be mentioned.
144Hz of refresh rate and a response rate of 2-3 milliseconds are also good indicators that this gaming monitor is equipped with the right gear to enjoy all of your favorite fast-moving games.
And the monitor is ergonomic and comfortable to use. You can adjust it as necessary, although you shouldn’t need to move it around too frequently. It has integrated anti-glare tech as well as anti-flicker and low blue light so that it won’t hurt your eyes to play for long periods of time.
- Beautiful LED display
- Excellent response and refresh rates
- Much more affordable than similar models made by better known brands
- Wobbly stand
Samsung CHG90 QLED
The Best Curved Gaming Monitor by Samsung
The Samsung CHG90 QLED gaming monitor’s behemoth 49-inch monitor with super ultra-wide screen and innovative 32:9 aspect ratio is bound to blow you away.
The Samsung QLED delivers purer, brighter, and more lifelike colors with its High Dynamic Range (HDR) technology. A maximum power consumption of 113 Watts is unexpectedly low for a monitor of this size and with this power.
You can be sure to enjoy a smoother gameplay with ultra-fast 144hz refresh rate while enjoying the stability of the durable and sturdy HAS stand, this monitor was designed for gamers with multiple game modes.
The motion blur reduction and VA panel let you enjoy unprecedented gaming performance without motion blur across the entire screen.
The CHG90 supports AMD’s new Radeon FreeSync 2 technology, which gives gamers a smooth HDR gaming experience with twice the perceivable brightness and color of that offered by the sRGB spectrum.
- HDMI 2 EA (2.0)
- 144hz refresh rate
- HAS stand
- Supports AMD’s new Radeon FreeSync 2 technology
- 60Hz/120Hz settings
- 20-step Black Equalizer
- Incredibly large, curved screen
- Excellent viewing capacity
- Colors and contrasts are beautifully presented
- Motion blur reduction technology
- Must update the system software to avoid unnecessary lag time
Alienware 25 AW2518H
Futuristic Gaming Monitor With NVIDIA G-SYNC
Designed for the gaming and video watching enthusiasts of the world, Dell’s Alienware 25 AW2518H delivers a unique futuristic style and precise form with solid stability feel. You will undoubtedly see gaming differently with the extraordinary NVIDIA G-SYNC. This breakthrough display technology eliminates screen tearing and minimizes display stutter and input lag.
The lightning-fast 240Hz native refresh rate combined with 1 millisecond response time delivers buttery-smooth gameplay with virtually no input lag. Specific gaming OSD (onscreen display) design keeps your user experience in the gaming theme. Play comfortably in your zone with a height adjustable stand, tilt, swivel and pivot features.
Built with premium materials in a thin, easy-to-adjust design, the 25″ gaming monitor stays true to the expert Alienware engineering gamers have come to expect. Find your ideal viewing position with tilt, pivot, swivel and height adjustable features, and settle in comfortably for those marathon gaming sessions.
- 24.5-inch screen
- 1920 x 1080 maximum preset resolution
- 16:9 aspect ratio
- NVIDIA G-SYNC technology
- 400 nits brightness
- 170°/160° viewing angle
- High resolution screen
- Solid base and frame feel
- Speed is exceptional
- HAS, Tilt, Pivot, Swivel adjustability
- Light at 14.57lbs
- Colors can look a little washed out when overclocked
AOC Agon AG271QG
One of the Best 1440 Resolution Gaming Monitors of the Year
Another of our favorites made by AOC; the Agon AG271QG is a 27-inch QHD (2560 x 1440) gaming monitor that is ready to plug and play. LED backlighting highlights even the darkest passages and corners in all of your favorite games so that you can easily see when enemies are flanking you, etc… Want to hook it up to multiple devices for different types of play?
No problem! It’s equipped with HDMI and a (v1.2) display port. Play all of your favorite games with the added benefits of NVIDIA GSYNC technology and a very reasonable 165Hz of refresh rate power, and you’ll definitely notice the difference that the NVIDIA GSYNC makes. This monitor will give you years of great, flicker and graphic tear free use.
- Very large display with great resolution
- 165Hz refresh rate
- Flimsy and wobbly stand
Another Great Gaming Monitor From Acer
The Acer XF250Q has AMD FreeSync, meaning that the monitor’s frames are synced with the graphics card’s frames which eliminates screen tearing and consistently provides the smoothest gaming experience possible.
Acer EyeProtect’s Flicker-less, Blue Light Filter, ComfyView and Low-dimming technology features take into consideration prolonged usage and minimize eye-strain from long gaming sessions. This is an incredible feature to add to the lineup while gaming, as gamers often suffer from eye problems due to extended exposure to screens.
The ultra-fast response time of 1ms enhances your in-game experience. No matter the fast-moving action or any dramatic transitions will be all rendered smoothly without the annoying effects of smearing or ghosting through Acer XF series.
And finally, the Acer XF250Q gaming monitor is designed to reduce the negative impact on the planet. The EcoDisplay design means it has ENERGY STAR 6.0 certification for being very energy-efficient, and they don’t contain mercury. These displays and their packaging are also designed to be easily recycled. Ultimately, this monitor is an exceptional buy.
- 16:9 aspect ratio
- Display resolution maximum of 1920 x 1080 pixels
- 24.5-inch display monitor
- Large display
- Light weight at 9.48lbs
- Occasional reports of backlight bleeding
The Best Gaming Monitor From LG
LG’s 34UC79G-B gaming monitor offers a 21:9 aspect ratio curved UltraWide FHD IPS display with a 144Hz refresh rate, delivering fluid gameplay and dynamic field of view which is ideal for non-stop immersive gaming.
Utilizing AMD FreeSync, gamers can experience seamless, fluid movement throughout hi-res, fast-paced games or movie frames. FreeSync nearly eliminates tearing and stuttering that can occur because of differences between a graphics card’s frame rate and a monitor’s refresh rate.
With the Crosshair feature, gamers can easily continue taking their skills to the next level. By placing the striking point in the center of the display, the feature enhances firing accuracy in first-person shooter games.
You can quickly and seamlessly optimize monitor settings to activate Black Stabilizer to reveal superior detail in dark scenes while the Dynamic Action Sync feature assures smooth, fluid gaming action.
With a 144Hz refresh rate, games played on the LG 34UC79G are noticeably smoother when compared to monitors with refresh rates of 60Hz or 75Hz.
Combine the smooth action with the curved IPS screen, and gamers will love the optimized and immersive gaming experience very nearly any viewing angle.
- 16:9 aspect ratio
- 2560 x 1080 pixel display resolution maximum
- 34-inch screen size
- Ultra-wide screen
- Curved monitor for immersive gaming
- Elegant design
- Minor backlight bleed reported in some cases
- The screen controls can be tricky in-game
This is Another Good Gaming Monitor in the $200 Range
At just over $200, the Acer XFA240 sports a 24-inch widescreen TN display with the absolute latest AMD FreeSync tech. This goes hand in hand with the 144Hz refresh rate and response time of 1 millisecond to give users a truly excellent gaming experience. This Full HD (1920 x 1080 pixels) gaming monitor is perfect for serious gamers on a budget.
Really, we can’t rave enough about how great of a deal this is.
Want to connect with multiple device types? No problem. This monitor is equipped with input ports for (v1.2) display port, HDMI, MHL, and DVI, so that you can connect with pretty much anything you please.
- Super affordable
- Great ratio of screen size to pixel count
- Highly adjustable- rotate, adjust height, ect…
- Considerably smaller than some others on our list
- Relatively low quality speakers
Whether you are on a budget or have all of the money in the world to blow, it is simple to find the right elements to put together a top-notch system that works for you. You just have to look in the right place!
While you’re in the market for a new gaming monitor, you might also consider checking out our lists of the best gaming mouse selection; as well as our list which covers top gaming keyboards currently available. These additional purchases are incredibly cheap in comparison to the purchase you’re already considering, and will exponentially amplify your gaming experience!