Best gaming monitor buying guide: We take you through the finest fast, high-resolution monitors for those on a budget, right up to enthusiast-grade kit costing more than £1000.
The world of gaming monitors used to be pretty dull. Only a few years ago, if you wanted a decent monitor for gaming you were limited to a handful of screen sizes which all used TN display panels – that was the only LCD panel that could provide the fast refresh rates that are key for competitive players. But recently we’ve seen a wealth of new products and technologies turn the market on its head.
The most interesting of these are Nvidia’s new wave of Big Format Gaming Displays (BFGD). Nvidia unveiled its new BFGD tech at CES 2018 in Las Vegas. They’re a new standard of 65-inch, 120Hz, 4K-resolution monitors that will meet HDR10 standards.
There’s no word on pricing or availability just yet, but with big names including Acer and Asus confirmed to be making BFGD monitors, they could radically shake up the market when they launch.
In the meantime, if you’re on the market for a monitor now, take a look at our in-depth explainer on refresh rates and motion blur, which goes into lots of detail about how refresh rates and other technology could affect your experience. Then jump into our definitive list of recommended gaming monitors, where we’ve highlighted the best currently available.
Related: Best graphics card
For a few extra pointers on what to look out for when buying a gaming monitor, read on below.
What about FreeSync and G-Sync?
FreeSync and G-Sync are two technologies that aim to address the issues of tearing and stuttering. Both occur as a result of the fact that monitors normally run at a fixed refresh rate while graphics cards simply churn out frames as fast as they can.
Tearing is where the monitor outputs an image made up of several frames
You can read more about how the technologies work in our FreeSync review – but, essentially, they ensure that the monitor keeps in sync with the speed at which the graphics card outputs each new frame. This eliminates tearing and stuttering, making games look better and run more smoothly.
As such, for those who are simply after a gaming monitor for pure competitive advantage neither is essential. But if you’re also concerned with having a more immersive, visually pleasing gaming experience, then either tech is well worth investing in.