How to Choose a Gaming Monitor

A gaming monitor is a display that maximizes the output of your computer’s CPU and graphics card to provide you with an immersive game experience. It can minimize problems such as lag and screen tearing.

These include features like a high refresh rate, Adaptive Sync, and HDR support. Gaming monitors also tend to offer less input lag than non-gaming displays.

  1. High Refresh Rate

Refresh rate is the number of times per second a monitor refreshes its image, and is measured in Hertz (Hz). This differs from framerate, which is a measure of how many frames are produced and displayed by your hardware in a second.

Gaming monitors with high refresh rates can reduce input lag, making them better for competitive gaming and other online activities that require quick reactions. They also provide more crisp and smooth visuals that can help gamers enjoy their gaming sessions.

However, not every gamer needs a high-resolution, high-refresh rate monitor. In fact, higher-refresh rate monitors aren’t even suitable for all games because they can only refresh the image as fast as your hardware is capable of producing them. This means that if you have an out-dated PC, then you might not be able to fully leverage the benefits of a high refresh rate monitor.

  1. Adaptive Sync

Adaptive Sync is a feature that synchronizes the display’s refresh rate with the frame rate of the graphics card, reducing screen tearing, stuttering, and input lag. It’s available on gaming monitors with NVIDIA G-Sync or AMD FreeSync, and it can improve the quality of both games and non-gaming applications.

However, there are some caveats to using adaptive sync. It’s important to ensure your GPU and monitor can maintain stable high frame rates that fall within the monitor’s variable refresh range, and you should enable it only when necessary. It may also increase energy consumption and generate heat, which could impact your computer performance or require a more powerful cooling solution.

It’s also worth noting that some gamers prefer to disable Adaptive Sync to prioritize frame rate and minimize input lag in fast-paced or graphically demanding games. For example, a Reddit user with a 60Hz monitor noted issues with Valorant when Adaptive Sync was enabled, and they recommended keeping it off for FPSs.

  1. Good Audio

Gaming monitors often have built-in speakers that can deliver audio quality that rivals standalone sound systems. This is a great option for gamers who don’t want to add another piece of hardware, or who have limited space in their setup.

Gaming-capable monitors typically offer a wide range of connections and ports, including HDMI 2.0 and DisplayPort 1.2, which are adequate for general PC use. They also support high dynamic range (HDR), which is great for enhancing the visuals of games.

LG paid special attention to the tuning of this OLED panel, and it shows: Out-of-the-box, this monitor looks amazing. It has a glossy anti-glare coating that really lets the panel shine, and it offers HDR support even though it only hits 400 nits of brightness.

  1. Good Viewing Angle

If you spend a lot of time gaming, the monitor’s viewing angle plays an important role. It determines the quality of image and color reproduction. You should avoid sitting too far away from the screen as it can cause eye strain and neck pain. A downward angle of about 15 degrees below your eyes is optimal for maximum comfort and reduced strain on the neck.

You should also ensure that your monitor has wide horizontal and vertical viewing angles, especially if you want to share the screen with others in your home or work. Narrow vertical viewing angles can lead to colors that look washed out or darker at the edges. You can check a monitor’s vertical viewing angle by tilting it and seeing how the image looks. TN panels tend to have narrow viewing angles while IPS and VA panels offer wider ones. You can easily see when a display has wide viewing angles by looking at the colors on the screen and noticing whether or not they shift from green to blue or red.