The Ultimate Gaming Monitor Buyer Guide: Everything You Need to Know

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To cut to the chase: monitors play a big part in our gaming experience. We can all agree that gaming simply feels different if you lack the right equipment. That’s why it’s important to invest in a quality gaming monitor that can enhance your overall gaming experience. 

With so many options on the market, it can be overwhelming to decide which monitor is the best fit for your needs. That’s where we come in – we’re here to offer tips and tricks to help you make an informed decision when selecting your gaming monitor. Whether you’re a hardcore gamer or just starting out, there are certain factors to consider before making your purchase, and we’ve got you covered. So, get ready to level up your gaming setup and take your gameplay to the next level with our guide to choosing the right gaming monitor.

Understanding Gaming Monitor Basics

Gaming monitors are specially designed monitors able to maximize the output your graphics card and CPU are offering. Basically, everything your gaming device is putting to work to deliver a crystal clear image will be displayed on your gaming monitor. Gaming monitors differ a lot in terms of sharpness, image quality, color, and other crucial aspects.

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In sumary, a regular monitor will not be able to support the effort your CPU and graphics card are doing. As a result, you won’t be able to enjoy your gaming sessions the same way as with the gaming monitor. Yes, they do cost more, but they also offer more in terms of FPS, response time, refresh rate, and resolution

These are the aspects you should consider when choosing the right gaming monitor:

  • Display Technology
  • Panel Type
  • Screen Size
  • Resolution
  • Refresh Rate
  • Response Time
  • Technology equipped

It’s important to add that if one gaming monitor lacks in one field but excels in another, it’s most likely specifically designed for a certain game with special requirements. For example, playing DOTA2 on your PC is unimaginable without high FPS and an insanely good refresh rate. 

The same goes for some first-person shooting games like CS:GO. It’s hard for a professional to show the exact level of their skill if the equipment is holding them back. On top of that, you’ll find that gaming monitors are really contributing a lot to the overall quality of gaming. Even pro gamers like w33haa (DOTA 2 professional) stated that buying a 244 Hz gaming monitor changed his perspective of the game and he could never go back to 144 Hz. 

We can see that gaming monitors are a real game-changer, no matter the game you play. Even if you’re not aiming to become a professional gamer, it’s still worth getting a gaming monitor in order to enjoy your games to the fullest.

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Display Technology

There are several types of display technologies available in the market, each with its own set of advantages and disadvantages for gaming. Here are some of the most popular ones:

LCD (Liquid Crystal Display)

This is the most common display technology used in modern monitors and televisions. LCD screens use a backlight to illuminate the pixels, which helps to produce bright and vivid colors. The main advantages of LCD screens are that they are affordable, have a fast refresh rate, and consume less power. 

However, LCDs can suffer from backlight bleeding, which can result in a poor contrast ratio and limited viewing angles.

LED (Light Emitting Diode)

LED displays are similar to LCD screens, but instead of using a backlight, they use small LEDs to light up the pixels. This allows for greater control over the brightness and color accuracy of the display. 

LED screens tend to have better contrast and deeper blacks than LCDs, as well as wider viewing angles. However, they are typically more expensive than LCDs and can suffer from “ghosting” or motion blur.

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OLED (Organic Light Emitting Diode)

OLED displays are the most advanced type of display technology currently available. They use organic compounds to produce light when an electric current is applied, allowing for individual pixels to be turned on and off independently. This allows for incredible contrast ratios, deep blacks, and vivid colors. 

OLED displays also have fast response times and wide viewing angles. However, they are expensive to manufacture and can suffer from image retention (or “burn-in”) if static images are displayed for long periods of time.

QLED (Quantum Dot Light Emitting Diode)

QLED displays use tiny particles called quantum dots to produce light. These dots are able to produce a wider range of colors than traditional LEDs, resulting in more accurate and vibrant colors. QLED screens also tend to be brighter which is perfect for gamers who spend a lot of hours in front of the monitor. 

In this regard, both LED and OLED displays can be good for gaming, but OLED displays can suffer from burn-in if static images are displayed for long periods of time, which can be a concern for some gamers. On the other hand, QLED displays are relatively new to the market and have not yet been extensively tested in the gaming community, but they are expected to provide excellent color accuracy and brightness, making them a good option for gaming as well.

Panel Types

The first thing everyone should look for in a gaming monitor is the type of panel it features. Namely, gaming monitors have evolved significantly in recent years, with advances in panel technology enhancing visual clarity, color accuracy, and response times. 

Choosing the right panel technology is critical to ensure the best gaming experience. There are several types of panel technologies available, including TN, IPS, VA, and others.

TN (Twisted Nematic) Panel Type

This is one of the most popular options for gaming monitors due to its low response time and high refresh rates. TN panels provide fast response times, which makes them ideal for competitive gaming where speed is crucial. However, TN panels have limited viewing angles and lower color accuracy compared to other panel types.

Low response time
High refresh rates
Limited viewing angles
Poor color accuracy
Narrow color gamut

IPS (In-Plane Switching) Panel Type 

IPS is known for its excellent color accuracy and wide viewing angles, making it ideal for gaming and other multimedia applications. IPS panels provide richer colors and better contrast, which can enhance the visual experience. However, IPS panels have a higher response time compared to TN panels, which may result in a slight motion blur.

Excellent color accuracy
Wide viewing angles
Good color gamut
Higher response time
More expensive than TN panels
IPS glow

VA (Vertical Alignment) Panel Type

As for the VA, it is known for its high contrast ratios and deep blacks, making it an ideal choice for gamers who prefer a more immersive experience. VA panels have better viewing angles compared to TN panels, but they are not as good as IPS panels. However, VA panels also have a slower response time, making them a slightly better choice for those who like to enjoy the graphics. 

High contrast ratios
Deep blacks
Better viewing angles than TN panels
Slower response time
Smearing and motion blur
Limited color gamut

There are other panel technologies available in the market, including PLS (Plane to Line Switching), AHVA (Advanced Hyper Viewing Angle), but they are not that popular in gaming monitors.

So, when it comes to gaming, TN panels are often the preferred choice due to their low response times and high refresh rates. IPS panels can also be a good option for gamers who prioritize color accuracy and wide viewing angles over speed. Ultimately, the best panel type for gaming depends on the individual’s preferences and the types of games they play.

Screen Size

Screen size can have a significant impact on gaming experience, as it affects the level of immersion, visibility, and detail of the game. A larger screen size can provide a more immersive experience, allowing gamers to feel like they are part of the action. It can also make the game more challenging to play, as it can be difficult to keep track of everything happening on the screen.

The optimal screen size for gaming depends on a variety of factors, including the distance from the screen, the type of game being played, and personal preferences. In general, a larger screen size is better for open-world games or games with a lot of detail, like World of Warcraft, while a smaller screen size is better for games that require quick reflexes and precision, such as first-person shooters like CS:GO.

Factors to consider when choosing a screen size for gaming include:

  • Viewing distance – It is important to consider the distance between the gamer and the screen.
  • Desk space – The size of the desk or gaming setup can also influence the choice of screen size.
  • Budget – Larger screen sizes tend to be more expensive, so it is important to consider your budget.
  • Resolution – A larger screen size may require a higher resolution to maintain image quality and detail.
  • Personal preference – The choice of screen size is also determined by your own personal preferences.

In general, the optimal screen size for gaming is between 24-27 inches for most gamers, as it provides a good balance between immersion and visibility. However, some gamers may prefer larger or smaller screens based on personal preference and specific gaming requirements.


Resolution refers to the number of pixels on a screen, and it can have a significant impact on the gaming experience. So, a higher resolution offers greater detail, sharper images, and more immersive gameplay, while a lower resolution can result in less detail and a less immersive experience.

There are several common resolutions used in gaming monitors, each with its own set of pros and cons:

  • 1080p (1920 x 1080) – This is the most common resolution used in gaming monitors. It is relatively affordable and can provide good performance on mid-range graphics cards. 
  • 1440p (2560 x 1440) – This resolution provides a higher pixel density than 1080p, resulting in sharper images and greater detail. It is a popular choice among gamers who want a more immersive experience. 
  • 4K (3840 x 2160) – This is the highest resolution commonly used in gaming monitors, and it provides incredible detail and immersion. 

When choosing the right resolution for your gaming needs, there are several factors to consider:

  • Graphics card – The monitor you choose should have a resolution compatible with your graphics card, always look out for that.
  • Cost – Higher resolution monitors tend to be more expensive, so it is important to consider the budget when selecting a monitor.
  • Game requirements – Most importantly, check the gaming requirements before buying your gaming monitor.

Refresh Rates

Refresh rate refers to the number of times per second that a monitor updates the image on the screen. It is measured in Hertz (Hz) and is an important factor in the gaming experience, as it can impact the smoothness and responsiveness of the gameplay.

In that light, the refresh rate is different from the frame rate, which refers to the number of frames per second that the game generates. While the frame rate is important for smooth gameplay, the refresh rate determines how often the monitor displays those frames. 

A higher refresh rate can make the gameplay feel smoother and more responsive, while a lower refresh rate can result in motion blur and a less fluid experience.

When choosing the right refresh rate for your needs, there are several factors to consider:

  • Graphics card – A higher refresh rate monitor requires a bit better graphics card in order to achieve its full potential.
  • Affordability – You should take the cost into consideration as well.
  • Your preferences – The choice of refresh rate comes down to personal preference and the level of smoothness and responsiveness you want to achieve in your gaming experience.
Smoother and more responsive gameplay
Reduced motion blur and ghosting
Enhanced visual clarity and detail
Can help reduce eye strain and fatigue
More demanding for graphics cards, which can impact performance
Tend to be more expensive
May not be noticeable or necessary for some gamers

In general, a 144Hz refresh rate is a good balance between smoothness and affordability for most gamers. However, for those who want the ultimate in smoothness and responsiveness, a 240Hz refresh rate may be worth the investment.

Response Time

Response time refers to the time it takes for a monitor’s pixels to change from one color to another. In other words, it measures how quickly a monitor can refresh the image on the screen. The lower the response time, the faster the monitor can refresh the image.

For gaming, response time is important because it affects the quality of the image displayed on the screen. If a monitor has a slow response time, it can result in “ghosting,” which is a visual artifact where a previous image is still visible on the screen as the new image is being displayed. This can make it difficult to accurately track moving objects on the screen, especially in fast-paced games.

Input lag, on the other hand, refers to the delay between when a player inputs a command and when it is registered on the screen. This is also important for gaming because it affects the responsiveness of the game. While response time and input lag are related, they are not the same thing.

When choosing the right response time for your gaming needs, it’s important to consider the types of games you play and the level of competitiveness you’re looking for. For example, if you primarily play casual games or games with slower-paced gameplay, a response time of 5 milliseconds (ms) or higher may be sufficient. 

However, if you play fast-paced games, such as first-person shooters or racing games, a response time of 1 ms or lower is recommended to minimize ghosting.

Adaptive Sync Technologies

Adaptive sync technology is a feature found in gaming monitors that synchronizes the refresh rate of the monitor with the output rate of the graphics card. This helps to reduce screen tearing and stuttering, which can be especially noticeable in fast-paced games with high graphical demands.

There are two main types of adaptive sync technologies available on the market: G-Sync and FreeSync. G-Sync is a proprietary technology developed by Nvidia, while FreeSync is an open standard developed by AMD. Both technologies work in similar ways, but G-Sync is only compatible with Nvidia graphics cards, while FreeSync is compatible with both AMD and Nvidia graphics cards.

When using an adaptive sync monitor, the monitor’s refresh rate is dynamically adjusted to match the output rate of the graphics card. This means that the monitor will display each frame as soon as it is ready, rather than waiting for the next scheduled refresh. This helps to reduce screen tearing and stuttering, resulting in a smoother gaming experience.

Other Factors to Consider 

Here are some less known factors you can keep in mind when choosing the right gaming monitor: 

  • Ergonomics and adjustability: It’s important to consider the ergonomics of the monitor and how adjustable it is. Look for a monitor that allows you to adjust the height, tilt, and swivel angle to ensure comfortable viewing angles during long gaming sessions.
  • Connectivity options: Consider the connectivity options of the monitor to ensure compatibility with your gaming setup. Look for a monitor with multiple HDMI, DisplayPort, and USB ports, as well as an audio output.
  • Design and aesthetics: While not as important as performance, the design and aesthetics of the monitor can still be a consideration for many gamers. Look for a monitor that matches your gaming setup and personal preferences in terms of design and aesthetics.
  • Additional features and technologies: There are a variety of additional features and technologies that some gaming monitors may offer, such as HDR (High Dynamic Range) support, built-in speakers, blue light filters, and curved screens. Consider which features are important to you and whether they are worth the extra cost.


What are the benefits of a gaming monitor over a regular monitor?

Gaming monitors offer several benefits over regular monitors, including faster refresh rates, lower input lag, better color accuracy, higher resolution, and additional features such as adaptive sync technology and customizable gaming modes. 

Can I use a gaming monitor for non-gaming purposes?

Yes, you can certainly use a gaming monitor for non-gaming purposes. While gaming monitors are designed with specific features and technologies optimized for gaming, they can still function as regular monitors for everyday use.

Do I need a powerful graphics card to use a gaming monitor?

You don’t necessarily need a powerful graphics card to use a gaming monitor, but having a powerful graphics card can definitely enhance your gaming experience on a gaming monitor.

What is the difference between 60Hz and 144Hz?

A monitor with a refresh rate of 60Hz can display up to 60 frames per second, while a monitor with a refresh rate of 144Hz can display up to 144 frames per second. Therefore, 144hz is a better option.

Is 4K gaming worth it?

From a gamer’s point of view, definitely. 4K gaming offers a much higher resolution than traditional 1080p gaming, resulting in much sharper and more detailed visuals.

Should I get a curved or flat gaming monitor?

Curved gaming monitors offer several potential benefits, such as improved immersion and reduced eye strain. But, it all comes down to your own preferences. 

How important is HDR for gaming?

HDR can be important for gaming as it can enhance the visual experience by offering a wider range of colors, higher contrast, and more vivid images.

What is the optimal viewing distance for a gaming monitor?

The optimal viewing distance for a gaming monitor depends on several factors, including the size of the monitor and the resolution of the display. The standard is between 60 and 90 cm.

How do I clean my gaming monitor?

Dusting from time to time is more than enough, but make sure to wipe the screen gently. 


Based on everything we talked about earlier, it’s pretty obvious that gaming monitors provide a much better gaming experience. Whether you’re hoping to become a pro gamer or just looking to have a blast during your gaming sessions, it’s definitely worth investing in a high-quality gaming monitor. Trust us, there’s no better feeling than seeing your victory displayed on a great gaming monitor – it’s absolutely priceless!

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Meet Aleksa, a seasoned tech writer and avid gamer at heart. Hailing from a quaint town, his passion for gaming blossomed early on. Devoting countless hours to honing his skills, Aleksa evolved into a professional gamer, traversing the globe and participating in premier gaming tournaments. Eventually, he discovered his innate talent for writing and decided to merge it with his extensive knowledge in technology and gaming, carving out a niche for himself as an exceptional tech and gaming writer.

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