Coolblue
Written by Tim

How do you choose a gaming monitor?

You are looking for a gaming monitor, but how do you choose from so many options? 144 hertz, 1 millisecond, 4K; what is it and do I need it? And what about G-Sync or FreeSync? We explain what you should pay attention to when choosing the right gaming monitor that meets your gaming needs.

Choosing a gaming monitor

When choosing a gaming monitor it's important that you know what specifications you're keeping into account. It matters a lot what games you play and what your wishes are. Ask yourself the following:

  • Which refresh rate do I choose?
  • Do I go for a G-Sync or FreeSync monitor?
  • Which response time do I choose?
  • Which panel do I need?
  • Do I find extra sharp images important?
  • What does HDR add to my gaming experience?
  • Do I need an ultra-wide monitor?
  • Am I a PC or console gamer?

Refresh speed: for smooth images

Gaming monitors have a minimum refresh rate of 60 hertz, which is great for moving images. Are your requirements a bit higher and do you play games in which images really have to move smoothly? If so, we recommend a minimum of 144 hertz. You will enjoy this very much with games like Battlefield or Call of Duty. If you want to make optimum use of this, make sure there is a powerful video card in your PC or laptop.

G-Sync and FreeSync

G-Sync and FreeSync are a form of adaptive sync. Thanks to this imaging technique, the refresh rate of your screen is the same as the frame rate of your video card. Because of this, you will not suffer from faltering images. Monitors with G-Sync only work with NVIDIA video cards. FreeSync monitors work with AMD video cards, although some of them also work with NVIDIA video cards. We call this G-Sync Compatible.

Response time: no blurry images

The response time in milliseconds indicates how quickly the pixels on your screen change color. If you play fast action games, you want the reaction time to be as low as possible, preferably 1 or 2 milliseconds. If this is too high, then ghosting or motion blur occurs. These are names for an effect that ensures that not all pixels change color quickly and give a blurry image.

The best panel for a gaming monitor

The panel of a gaming monitor has a lot to do with the quality and performance of the monitor. There are different panels: IPS, TN, and VA. These all have their own specific characteristics and qualities. For example, IPS is known for a good color range, TN for the speed, and VA for the good contrast ratio. It depends very much on what you are looking for as a gamer and what you find most important.

Sharp image and vivid colors

4K gaming monitor

If you are a gamer who likes a lot of visual spectacle, then you prefer to game on a monitor with a 4K resolution. 4K screens have a resolution of 3840 by 2160 pixels, so you see every detail sharp. Most 4K gaming monitors have a refresh rate of 60 hertz, so in many cases you prefer image quality to image speed. Also with 4K gaming it is important that you have a powerful video card that supports 4K gaming on 60 hertz.

Gaming on an HDR monitor

HDR stands for High Dynamic Range and is also emerging within the gaming world. This technique provides a more extensive color reproduction with a high contrast and high brightness. Because of the true-to-life colors, you see more details in your games and images are much more 'real' than on a 'normal' monitor. It is also easier to find your way in dark game levels; because of the high contrast and brightness, you have better visibility. Please note that your games support HDR to take advantage of this.

Ultrawide and console gaming

Gaming on an ultra-wide monitor

An ultra-wide gaming monitor provides a third more screen space. On a super ultra-wide, you have double the screen space yourself. With this, you can easily replace your 2 screen setup. Ultra-wide monitors give you more visibility in your games, if a game supports this. So you have extra advantage in strategy games, you see just a little more of your playing field in a shooter or you see almost the entire field in Fifa.

A gaming monitor for your console

Console gamers also opt for monitors to enjoy their Playstation 4, Xbox One, or Nintendo Switch. Compared to a TV, a gaming monitor has less input lag, so you have fewer problems with blurred images. A monitor also often has special gaming settings. If you have a Playstation 4 Pro or Xbox One X, you get the best out of it with a 4K or HDR monitor. A console gives an output of up to 60 hertz, so you don't need a higher refresh rate.



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