The best monitors can upgrade your desk and enhance your entire computing experience, whether you’re building your ideal PC workspace or just need a nice big screen to plug your laptop into.
Gaming also has its own unique concerns. When the difference between victory and defeat can come down to split second timing, you can’t afford long lag times. If you want one of the best gaming monitors, we recommend finding a display that offers response times of 15 milliseconds or less.
When seeking out the best monitors, we test every display we review with our Klein K 10-A colorimeter, paired with testing software. We use this high-quality scope to measure the display’s brightness levels, color gamut and color accuracy.
Smoother gameplay is also part of what you pay for in a gaming monitor, so pay attention to what frame syncing technology a monitor support.
AMD Free Sync and Nvidia G-Sync both allow the monitor and the graphics card to coordinate the refresh rate of the screen with the output of the GPU, but they approach this problem in slightly different ways, and a given monitor will likely provide support for only one or the other format.
If your gaming ring uses Nvidia cards, you’ll want a G-Sync capable monitor, while AMD-based systems will play nicely with a Free Sync display.
Basic Information about Best Monitor
Your computer monitor can make a huge difference to the way you work or play games, giving you much greater freedom over optimizations than you would using a fixed laptop display.
We’ve tested them all, measuring everything from the color gamut and brightness to response times, so we can be confident when we tell you that one display is better than another. We’ve also identified specific use cases that make a monitor a better fit for one person or another.
Luckily, we can help with that. Monitors are one of the most crucial parts of a computer setup and something you definitely don’t want to compromise on, so if you’re unsure how to pick the best monitor, we’ve got a few tips to keep you on track.
Testing monitors is more involved than you think. We don’t just set one up and use it as our main monitor for a few days, taking down notes. Sure, we utilize it for our day-to-day workloads, watch movies and shows with it, and play our favorite AAA games on it so we can gauge its real-world performance.
Computer monitors come in a variety of sizes, from 12-inch portable displays (the smallest we’ve reviewed) up to 65-inch panels that bridge the gap between monitors and TVs. Between the two extremes, though, we group most desktop displays into two general categories: business monitors, and entertainment monitors.
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Don’t expect much in the way of flexibility. Most budget displays are supported by a rigid stand that may provide tilt but probably won’t offer height and pivot adjustments. As with nearly all displays, costs will rise along with panel size. You can buy a simple 24-inch panel for around $100, while budget 27-inch screens are available for less than $150.
This monitor is big enough that you may be able to use it without needing to scale up text or UI elements to make them readable. Like the Dell P2721Q, the P3222QE comes with a three-year warranty and a Premium Panel Guarantee, which helps make it easier to spend $700 on a bigger monitor.
However, it still costs a couple hundred dollars more than the 27-inch monitors we recommend, and it requires a lot more physical space.
The Asus ProArt Display PA278CV is a 27-inch monitor with a wide variety of ports and decent color accuracy on most of its presents.
The exception is its sRGB present, which offers fantastic accuracy but locks the display at a relatively dim brightness that we found too low for daily use.
The PA278CV has an HDMI port, a DisplayPort input and output, a USB-C port, and four USB 3.0 Type-A ports, making this monitor particularly good for anyone who wants to use theirs with a laptop. It provides enough power to charge most 13-inch laptops, and its flexible stand tilts, swivels, pivots, and adjusts in height. It also has a three-year warranty with a good dead-pixel policy.
To help you pick out the right one for you we’ve looked at monitors ranging from small to extra-large, with resolutions from 1080p to 4K, and features like frame syncing and adjustable stands.
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