The push for higher resolutions rages on, and 4K has quickly become the standard for a high-end gaming PC. When I was fortunate enough to find an RTX 3090 in stock, which I knew was a capable 4K graphics card, I knew I had to upgrade my monitor to go with it.
But after using 4K monitor for a few months, I’m already back to 1440p. Here’s why I don’t plan on going back.
The RTX 3090 situation
I’ve already drawn the ire of tired gamers hunting for a graphics card during the GPU shortage, but I still need to set the scene. I own an RTX 3090. It’s not a review sample, I didn’t get it for free, and I didn’t buy it through some strange connection. I saved up for nearly a year, waited patiently as my attempts to buy a
I’m lucky, even considering how much time I spent trying to hunt down a
The RTX 3090 is the most capable
Get your performance in check
Consoles screw everything up. In the final years of last-gen consoles,
There are tools to help with this, such as Nvidia Image Scaling and AMD Radeon Super Resolution, but for the most part, your PC will render every pixel for whatever resolution you select. And
That’s tough on PCs, even ones packed with an RTX 3090. My personal rig has an Intel Core i9-10900K, the RTX 3090, and 32GB of memory. In my main game, Destiny 2, I hover between 70 and 80 frames per second (fps) at
Those results aren’t bad, but they’re not what I expected from what it supposed to be the most performant GPU on the market. Bumping down to 1440p is much more forgiving — 95 fps in Assassin’s Creed Valhalla, and a locked 144 fps to match my refresh rate in Destiny 2.
Forget resolution — talk pixel density
Resolution is the name of the game with monitors, but you should always consider it in the context of pixel density, which helps determine how large pixels are physically for a given screen size. Take a
The lower the pixel density, the easier it is to make out individual pixels. We want high pixel density, where the individual pixels are smaller and therefore harder to make out. Resolution and display size scale pixel density oppositely, so you can end up with a similar pixel density at two different resolutions.
In my case, I moved from a 32-inch
That’s a bit lower, but remember that
Also consider that most TVs have far lower pixel density than
Technical bits aside, the point about pixel density is that it’s absolutely vital to consider the screen size for a given resolution. In the case of my two
Still not prime time for 4K
With more than double the pixels as 1440p,
- Nope, I still don’t regret buying my Steam Deck
- I switched to an AMD GPU for a month — here’s why I don’t miss Nvidia
- Asus’ 4K, 32-inch mini-LED gaming monitor might hit the perfect sweet spot
- Lenovo unleashes an avalanche of monitors, including a 4K 144Hz beast
- I switched to a glossy gaming monitor, and I can’t go back