It's not enough to pick up one of the best monitors if you're a gamer. The best gaming monitors are tricked out with high refresh rates and low response times to keep your gameplay fluid. Our top pick is the , but there are several other options depending on your needs and budget.
We rounded up the best monitors for gaming, including displays ranging from 1080p to 4K and options from as little as $200 to well over $1,000. If you need a gaming monitor, we have the right displays for you.
Alienware 34 QD-OLED
The best gaming monitor
- QD-OLED contrast is unbeatable
- Fantastic HDR performance
- Excellent color saturation
- Attractive, minimalist design
- Surprisingly affordable
- SDR brightness is a bit low
- Color accuracy isn't perfect
Why you should buy this: The Alienware 34 QD-OLED provides the best gaming experience you can buy in 2022.
Who's it for: Ultrawide fans who want to experience OLED with PC games.
Why we chose the Alienware 34 QD-OLED:
The Alienware 34 QD-OLED is the ultimate gaming monitor in 2022, and that's because it finally makes an attempt to shake up the massively stale market. How? Quantum Dot OLED. The Alienware 34 QD-OLED isn't content with poor HDR, washed-out colors, and low peak brightness. It wants to provide the best image quality possible.
And it succeeds. The Alienware 34 QD-OLED has stunning contrast due to the deep blacks that are characteristic of OLED displays. Games look stunning on the display, especially if you're playing one of the best HDR games available on PC.
The display gets everything else right, too. It's certified with G-Sync Ultimate for tear-free gaming, and it can top out at a 175Hz refresh rate. The resolution is great, too, with the 21:9 aspect ratio offering up a resolution of 3440 x 1400 across the 34-inch screen.
Although the ultrawide form factor may not be for everyone, the Alienware 34 QD-OLED is worth adjusting to. It offers the best image quality out of any gaming monitor you can buy, it's not too expensive, and it comes with the essential features PC gamers need.
Sony InZone M9
The best 4K HDR gaming monitor
- Excellent HDR for $900
- Auto tone mapping with PS5
- Works with G-Sync and FreeSync
- Easy to use OSD and software
- KVM switch with two USB ports
- DisplayPort over USB-C and HDMI 2.1
- Vignetting around the edges
- Stand doesn't get high enough
- SDR is lacking behind VA panels
- Poor color and brightness uniformity
Why you should buy this: It's the best 4K HDR monitor you can buy, no contest.
Who's it for: PC and PS5 gamers who want top-notch HDR without spending $2,000 or more.
Why we chose the Sony InZone M9:
The InZone M9 is Sony's first gaming monitor ever, and it's a hell of a showing. It challenges the old guard of 4K gaming monitors by offering an unmatched HDR experience under $1,000, and it's built with the way modern gamers play in mind — often dashing between a PC and a console.
Its main selling point is Full Array Local Dimming (FALD), which is a feature you typically only find on the most expensive gaming monitors. It comes with 96 dimming zones, allowing the screen to adjust its brightness in independent areas to provide deep contrast and rich colors that similar panels just can't manage.
HDR on PC has been embarrassing for years, but the M9 changes that. It gets the basics right, too, with a 27-inch IPS panel that's decently color accurate, 4K resolution, G-Sync support, and the holy grail of refresh rates: 144Hz.
Beyond the PC, it also comes with a slew of PS5-focused features, including auto HDR tone mapping for accurate color and a KVM switch that allows you to toggle between multiple machines with the same peripherals. The InZone M9 is easily the best 4K monitor you can buy, and competitors have a lot of work to do to catch up.
Samsung Odyssey G7
The best 1440p gaming monitor
- Excellent color reproduction
- Beautiful design
- Great curve for gaming immersion
- Fast 240Hz refresh rate
- Broken adaptive sync
- Low static contrast performance
- Curve off-center
Why you should buy this: It's the perfect 1440p gaming monitor.
Who's it for: 1440p gamers who want something a little more premium.
Why we chose the Samsung Odyssey G7:
1440p monitors are a dime a dozen, with several displays gunning for 2K resolution with a 240Hz refresh rate (the HP Omen 27c is a prime example). None of them do the trick as well as Samsung's tried and true Odyssey G7, however.
It's more expensive than the competition, but Samsung puts the extra money to good use. The Odyssey G7 is certified with DisplayHDR 600 for solid HDR gaming, and it uses a quantum dot layer to enhance colors. Even better, it supports G-Sync and FreeSync so you can have adaptive refresh regardless of which of the best graphics cards are powering your rig.
Samsung's OSD is one of the best in the business, too. It's normally a chore to do something as simple as adjusting your brightness, but Samsung makes it easy with a simple OSD and a single joystick. It may seem small, but it makes a big difference.
Pricey as it is, the Samsung Odyssey G7 offers a great balance of image quality, gaming performance, and quality-of-life features in a space where monitors are too often slanted in one direction or another.
Asus ROG Swift PG259QNR
The best 1080p gaming monitor
- Unrivaled motion clarity
- Ultra-low input lag
- Buttery smooth gameplay
- Superbly stable stand
- Includes desk clamp
- Only 1080p
- Limited mainstream appeal
Why you should buy this: It manages an insane 360Hz refresh rate for the most competitive gamers.
Who's it for: Competitive gamers who need the highest refresh rate possible.
Why we chose the Asus ROG Swift PG259QNR:
There are loads of budget 1080p monitors (we'll get to our pick there soon), so we wanted to focus on a premium 1080p option. The Asus ROG Swift PG259QNR is a monitor built specifically for competitive gaming, sporting a staggering 360Hz refresh rate.
That's the main draw, allowing you to see superb clarify in Overwatch, Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, or even Fortnite (provided you have one of the best gaming desktops). The ROG Swift PG259QNR supports G-Sync all the way up to 360Hz, too.
Otherwise, the display is solid, if unremarkable. The IPS panel provides decent color accuracy, though not the wide gamut of the quantum dot monitors above. The 24.5-inch size helps the 1080p resolution not look too fuzzy, either, provided you want to sit up close to the display.
It's a bit of a glass cannon, but for some gamers, the Asus ROG Swift PG259QNR will be the perfect esports monitor.
Acer Predator X28
The best G-Sync gaming monitor
- Excellent color accuracy and coverage
- Nvidia Reflex and G-Sync
- 4K at 120Hz over HDMI
- Superb gaming performance
- Four USB ports, including two on the side
- OSD is a bit technical
- G-Sync adds a small premium
- No HDMI 2.1 ports
Why you should buy this: It supports true G-Sync and Nvidia Reflex, and it's under $1,000.
Who's it for: 4K gamers with an Nvidia graphics card.
Why we chose the Acer Predator X28:
G-Sync monitors are known for being expensive, but the Acer Predator X28 proves that adage wrong. It comes with a proper G-Sync module inside, which also brings Nvidia Reflex support, and manages to pair it with a 4K panel for under $1,000.
Although it comes with a G-Sync module, the display supports FreeSync, too. The module isn't necessary, but it enables Reflex to analyze your system latency. Latency plays a massive role in competitive games, and Reflex is a simple solution to find what's causing your lag.
For specs, the panel sports a 4K resolution and a refresh rate of up to 152Hz. The panel comes factory calibrated, too, and based on our testing, it manages excellent color accuracy and coverage. It's not as good as quantum dot display for color coverage, but it will get the job done.
Although the display lacks HDMI 2.1 support, it can still handle 4K at 120Hz for the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X. The Acer Predator X28 does a bit of everything, and at a price that no other display can touch.
The best budget 4K gaming monitor
- One of the only 32-inch 4K monitors with a high refresh rate
- Excellent post-calibration color accuracy
- Two HDMI 2.1 ports
- Built-in KVM switch
- Poor HDR performance
- Subpar stand
- Bad pre-calibration color accuracy
Why you should buy this: It comes with all of the features 4K gamers need, but at a price much lower than the competition.
Who's it for: 4K gamers on a tight budget.
Why we chose the Gigabyte M32U:
You can pick up the Gigabyte M32U for as little as $750, which is an insane price considering the specs. It's a 32-inch 4K monitor with a 144Hz refresh rate, and it even sports dual HDMI 2.1 ports so you can hook up a PlayStation 5 or Xbox Series X.
All of the specs are right, and Gigabyte goes further with an IPS panel that boasts surprisingly good color accuracy. The M32U even comes with a KVM switch, allowing you to hook up some peripherals through the included USB ports to use them between multiple systems.
It's in the odds and ends where the M32U lags behind more premium options. The stand is terrible and it doesn't come with any gamer flare. Throw the display on one of the best monitor stands, though, and those issues are easy to overlook.
Acer Nitro XZ272U
The best budget 1440p gaming monitor
- Excellent gaming performance
- Good contrast
- Suprisingly color-accurate
- Curved, but not too much
- Competitive pricing
- Lacking build quality
- Light smearing with fast motion
- Unimpressive color gamut
Why you should buy this: It hits the marks that 1440p gamers monitors should, but for about $100 less.
Who's it for: Gamers who want an optimal experience without spending too much.
Why we chose the Acer Nitro XZ272U:
The Acer Nitro XZ272U is a sweet-spot monitor, and it's easy to recommend. For around $300, you're getting a 27-inch 1440p display sporting a 1500R curve and a refresh rate of 165Hz. That's all you really need for gaming, as native 4K is prohibitively demanding in most cases.
Its VA panel doesn't come with great color coverage or contrast, but it still packs decent color accuracy out of the box. The display also comes with DisplayHDR 400 certification, though our testing shows the HDR experience isn't the best.
As is typical of VA panels, the Nitro XZ272U shows some black smearing when at overdriven refresh rates, but it's much less pronounced than competing options. And considering the panel's already fast 144Hz base refresh rate, you don't have to overdrive the display at all.
Acer Nitro XF243Y
The best budget 1080p gaming monitor
- Low input lag and response time
- Great gaming performance
- Poor stand
Why you should buy this: It's fast, accessible, and cheap.
Who's it for: Gamers looking for a feature-rich monitor for around $200.
Why we chose the Acer Nitro XF243Y:
The Acer Nitro XF243Y isn't the best monitor for gaming, but that's hard to expect for around $200. For that price, you're getting a 24-inch display with Full HD resolution and, critically, a 144Hz refresh rate. The display also supports FreeSync, allowing you to use adaptive refresh with an Nvidia or AMD GPU.
For specs, the Nitro XF243Y checks out. It shoots ahead with low input lag and an excellent response time, ensuring that you can hit your headshots and score your goals. The IPS panel means the display has solid color accuracy out of the box, even if it takes a hit when it comes to brightness and contrast.
The Nitro XF243Y doesn't support HDMI 2.1 for the latest consoles, and the stand doesn't offer a ton of room for adjustment. Still, it's hard to argue with the price of the Nitro XF243Y, especially when it carries excellent gaming performance in tow.
BenQ Mobiuz EX3410R
The best ultrawide gaming monitor
- Bright, vibrant colors
- Solid DisplayHDR 400 performance
- Excellent integrated speakers
- Automatic source/preset mapping
- Included remote
- Decent overdrive settings
- Menu is a little clunky
- Not well-suited for color work
Why you should buy this: It goes far beyond other ultrawide gaming monitors despite costing less.
Who's it for: Gamers who want a premium ultrawide experience without paying $1,000 or more.
Why we chose the BenQ Mobiuz EX3410R:
The best ultrawide monitors have always struggled to find a balance: Either they're inexpensive and focused on office use or they're massively overpriced and tailored toward gamers. Enter the BenQ Mobiuz EX3410R, an ultrawide gaming monitor that hits the marks it should and isn't ungodly expensive.
Those features include solid HDR performance due to the BenQ'd HDRi filter, a 144Hz refresh rate, and a 1ms response time. In our tests, we were able to configure the monitor in half a dozen distinct ways and still come out with an excellent-looking image.
As is typical of BenQ monitors, the Mobiuz EX3410R goes further with built-in speakers that rival some of the best computer speakers, as well as a remote to bring everything together. Even better, the Mobiuz EX3410R is only $800, putting every other monitor in this class to shame.
This very much depends on the type of games you want to play. If you play competitive, fast-paced games, high-refresh-rate monitors are a must as they can reduce input lag and give you a smoother gaming experience. Higher resolutions and HDR are great for more cinematic, AAA experiences, while larger, curved screens add immersion for all sorts of titles.
Yes, but it's very minor. Above 144Hz, refresh rates start to show diminishing returns, so most gamers won't notice a difference between 144Hz and 240Hz. The difference is that a 240Hz has less latency — it refreshes more often — which can make a difference in how a game feels, especially in a competitive setting.
Yes, there's a massive difference. 4K has more than four times as many pixels as 1080p (two million compared to over eight million). 4K displays look sharper and provide better clarity. You'll need a powerful gaming PC to render all of those pixels, though, so you may want to stick with a lower resolution if your rig isn't up to snuff.
The size of your monitor largely depends on what resolution it is. As the screen size gets larger, lower resolutions will become more pronounced. For gaming, we recommend a 24-inch monitor for 1080p, a 27-inch monitor for 1440p, and a 27-inch or larger monitor for 4K.
Keep in mind the aspect ratio, as well. Ultrawide monitors are wider, and the screen size isn't comparable to a standard 16:9 display. A 34-inch ultrawide monitor isn't as large as a 34-inch 16:9 one.
Yes, but not in the way you might assume. Response time on a monitor measures how long it takes from one pixel to transition to a different color, not the input lag. Faster response times provide clearer motion, so a low response time is ideal for gaming.
G-Sync and FreeSync are both adaptive refresh rate technologies. The main difference is that FreeSync is an open-source version, while G-Sync is exclusive to Nvidia graphics cards. That has largely changed in recent years, however, and most monitors with adaptive refresh will work with an AMD or Nvidia graphics card.
Yes, you can use a TV as a gaming monitor. TVs have similar options for refresh rates, resolutions, HDR support, and connections like HDMI — plus, HDMI 2.1 added support for the open Adaptive Sync technology, and some TV brands, like Samsung, support FreeSync as well.
However, TVs are generally much more expensive than monitors, so you will likely end up paying a lot more for similar specifications. TVs may also lack certain modes, menu options, and customization features that monitors have for gaming.
Absolutely. Look for a monitor that has HDMI 2.1 or later ports for the best results. The consoles support up to 4k resolution and a 120Hz refresh rate, so you can also be generous with specs and get great results.
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