Best Gaming Monitors 2019: Top Picks for 1080p and 4K Gaming
Whether you're rocking a cheap gaming laptop or even a premium model, nothing beats using one of the best gaming monitors around, like the Dell 24 S2417DG, as your main display. Gaming monitors come in all shapes and sizes, and they're really useful for providing more display real estate for games and freeing up your laptop screen for guides or Twitch chats.
There are a few things you should know, however, before buying a gaming monitor. You'll have to choose between 4K, which gives you sharper images but lower refresh rates, and 1080p, which favors responsiveness over resolution. Everything in between lands on the middle of the spectrum. There's also High Dynamic Range (HDR), which nets you better color and brightness but at a higher cost.
You'll have to choose a panel type, as well, which comes down to a choice between TN (twisted nematic) and IPS (in-plane switching). The former is cheaper and offers better response times, while the latter features better colors and contrast at the cost of response times and a hit to your wallet. Also, check if the monitor supports Nvidia G-Sync or AMD FreeSync, which is designed to sync up to your GPU for smoother frame rates (go with whichever branded GPU you have).
At IFA 2019, we got to see the Acer Thronos Air, which packed a curved widescreen monitor. The Alienware 55-inch OLED Gaming Monitor that we got to see at CES is available right now and runs for a meaty $3,999 (and we're reviewing it right now). Currently, you can get the Alienware 27-inch Gaming Monitor, which boasts AMD FreeSync and a 240Hz refresh rate, for $599. We also just reviewed the LG 38GL950G 38 inch curved gaming monitor.
If you'd rather save money than capitalize on refresh rates, check out our list of cheap monitors and gaming laptop deals, which we rank from best to worst. We also have a list of the best curved monitors around. And right now you can get the Dell 24 S2417DG for $329 ($100 off). But if you want a beefier gaming laptop to match a new monitor, check out ones with an RTX 2080 chip.
Here are the best gaming monitors you can buy right now.
Credit: Laptop Mag
Dell 24 S2417DG
The Dell 24 S2417DG is one of the best 1440p gaming monitors you can get for the price. Its 24-inch, Nvidia G-Sync panel covers 123 percent of the sRGB color spectrum and emits a solid 284 nits of brightness. It's also supereasy to pivot the display, and even turn it into portrait mode. The monitor offers several useful presets, like FPS, RTS and RPG mode, which all change the color and brightness of the display. Now, pack all those neat features in package with an affordable $429 price, and you've got yourself the best overall gaming monitor out there.
Pros: Vibrant quad-HD display; Very responsive; Useful game presets; Highly adjustable
Cons: Stiff navigation buttons
Display: 24-inch (2560 x 1440) | Max Refresh Rate: 165 Hz | Response Time: 1ms | Adaptive Sync: G-Sync | Aspect Ratio: 16:9 | Panel Type: TN | Inputs: DisplayPort, HDMI
As we sifted through the field of cheap gaming monitors, the LG 24MP59G-P stood out primarily because of its solid all-around features for the price ($150). Its 24-inch, 1920 x 1080 display covers 93 percent of the sRGB color gamut and hits a respectable 246 nits of brightness. This monitor also has one of the best lag times we saw in this price range. Additionally, it has a pretty wicked design and it's even compatible with AMD FreeSync.
Pros: Bright display; Stylish design; Responsive for the price; Affordable
Cons: Not very colorful
Display: 24-inch (1920 x 1080) | Max Refresh Rate: 75 Hz | Response Time: 5ms GTG/1ms MBR | Adaptive Sync: FreeSync | Aspect Ratio: 16:9 | Panel Type: IPS | Inputs: DisplayPort, HDMI
Samsung's CHG70 curved gaming monitor blew us away with the full force of a rainbow. The 32-inch, 1440p, FreeSync display covers a wild 154 percent of the sRGB spectrum. In SDR mode, the monitor averaged up to 365 nits of brightness in our testing, and in HDR mode, the specs say that the monitor can go up to 600 nits. To top it all off, the display sits on a super-ergonomic stand that can accommodate any setup you throw at it.
Pros: Sharp, 1440p resolution; Fantastic HDR support; Impressive color and accuracy
Cons: Noticeable warping and color shifting; No built-in speakers
Display: 32-inch (2560 x 1440) | Max Refresh Rate: 144 Hz | Response Time: 1ms | Adaptive Sync: FreeSync | Aspect Ratio: 16:9 | Panel Type: VA | Inputs: DisplayPort, HDMI (2), USB (2)
Asus ROG Swift PG27A
The Asus ROG Swift PG27A is among the most beastly sub-$1,000 monitors, as it offers a 4K display with Nvidia G-Sync, a pair of solid speakers and an intuitive interface. This 27-inch champion covers a rich 130 percent of the sRGB color gamut. And while it stumbled slightly with its 234 nits of brightness, it offers a speedy 4-ms response time for a 4K monitor. It also neatly flips into portrait mode, as if it were meant to be viewed that way all along.
Pros: Gorgeous 4K picture quality; Intuitive interface; G-Sync support; Solid built-in speakers
Cons: Fairly pricey
Display: 27-inch (3840 x 2160) | Max Refresh Rate: 60 Hz | Response Time: 4ms | Adaptive Sync: G-Sync | Aspect Ratio: 16:9 | Panel Type: IPS | Inputs: DisplayPort, HDMI, USB (2)
Acer Predator X34
As long as you're willing to drop the cash ($849), the Acer Predator X34 is hands down the best curved gaming monitor you can get. At 34 inches with a 3440 x 1440 resolution, it's incredibly immersive, covering 99 percent of the sRGB color gamut and a strong 261 nits of brightness. You'll even get the full dive with the Predator's crisp 7-watt speakers and its Nvidia G-Sync compatibility. This monitor just looks pretty badass, too, as if an alien artifact crash-landed on your desk.
Pros: Impressive design; Gorgeous picture quality; Strong G-Sync performance; Low latency; Solid built-in speakers
Cons: Pricey; Navigating menus can be a pain
Display: 34-inch (3440 x 1440) | Max Refresh Rate: 100 Hz | Response Time: 4ms | Adaptive Sync: G-Sync | Aspect Ratio: 21:9 | Panel Type: IPS | Inputs: DisplayPort, HDMI
For just $200, the ViewSonic XG2401 is a sharp, 24-inch, 1920 x 1080 panel with a speedy 1-millisecond response time and AMD FreeSync compatibility for tear-free gaming. The ViewSonic averages 355 nits of brightness, while the color landed at 91 percent, which could be better. But for a monitor this inexpensive, the built-in speakers packed a punch when we cranked the volume up all the way, and this monitor even offers a neat headphone stand.
Pros: Superfast response times; Fast 144-Hz refresh rate at 1080p; AMD FreeSync support; Highly adjustable stand with headphone dock
Cons: A few extraneous features
Display: 24-inch (1920 x 1080) | Max Refresh Rate: 144 Hz | Response Time: 1ms | Adaptive Sync: FreeSync | Aspect Ratio: 16:9 | Panel Type: TN | Inputs: DisplayPort, HDMI (2), USB (3)