Top 10 Best Gaming Monitors in 2019

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Investing in a proper PC Gaming suite is no longer an eccentricity/ now that E-sports are in a league of its own, with million-dollar-prizes to go with the cred, manufacturers and advertisers are finally paying gamers due attention. After all, we are a tech-savvy demographic with an eye for performance and a do-it-yourself attitude, and that means that we deserve, at the very least, our own range of specialized products.

From gaming chairs to flashy mice and next-generation video cards, there are options galore for anyone who is willing to build their dream gaming cove piece by piece. That doesn’t mean that anything with blue fluorescent lights is worth its price tag – and nowhere are the minor differences in specs and performance as visible as on monitors.

Beyond simple size and resolution, the new class of gaming monitors available now can offer cinematic curvature, faster response times, expanded color palettes, and even energy-savings modes that will offset the extra energy used by your new video card. Other perks, such as instant refresh and extra drives for controllers, surround audio systems, and HDMI compatibility never go amiss but will depend on the overall effect you are going after.

Naturally, not even the best monitor will be able to offset the limitations set by the processor and video card, which is why gaming monitors must adapt to your total budget. Whether you are dead set on top-of-the-line products only, or need to compromise, the monitors listed below will offer the best performance and value.

Types of Gaming Monitors

The PC monitor market has two big players right now:  liquid crystal display (LCD) and organic light emitting diode (OLED) technology. Good old cathode ray tubes, or CRT monitors, have now largely been abandoned, and their signature bulky frame is now only seen on vintage movies.

Covering the exact science that lies behind the mechanics of each technology is something reserved for those of us who have at least an Advanced Placement class in Physics under our belt. Nevertheless, each type offers quite distinct image qualities.

LCD Monitors

These are the most popular nowadays for both PC monitors and TVs. These all use a bright white backlight behind a layer of liquid crystal, which, depending on whether it’s activated or not, is used to create highly crisp images. LCD monitors usually offer superior brightness and work exceptionally well when combined with HDR (High dynamic range) technology. They are also great under poor-light conditions. However, they can create more eye fatigue after long hours, and fast moving images can blur easily.

OLED Monitors

In the usually pricier OLED monitors, each pixel has its own, independent light. This offers the potential for higher contrasting colors, blacker blacks, and better performance for fast moving images, which is a must when playing first person shooters. Up to just a couple of years ago, OLED technology was only found on high-end TVs, but they have now breached the PC market as well.

1. Acer Predator X27

Acer Predator X27 Monitor Review

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Specs:

  • Size: 27’’
  • Resolution: 4K HD
  • Refresh rate: 120 Hz

Any “Top 10” list must start with the grand and ambitious. If you are a professional gamer with a nice sponsor, or are free from budget constraints, this is one of the first monitors to consider. In addition to a full HD experience, its IPS technology offers remarkable contrast and G-Sync support. The anti-glare side panels provide an immersive experience that is hard to beat by the competition – even in the realm of 10bit color.

Pros:

  • Super-fast refresh rate
  • An embedded NVIDIA HDR
  • A highly customizable ergonomic mount

Cons:

  • Only truly enjoyable if you have the CPU to match.

2. Samsung CHG90

Samsung CHG90 Monitor Review


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Specs:

  • Size: 49”
  • Resolution: 3840 x 1080
  • Refresh rate: 144Hz

Likely the widest commercially-available gaming monitor, the Samsung CHG90 is the kind of monitor that makes VR helmets feel surplus; as far as immersion goes, the 49 inches and cinematic curvature offered by this monitor are hard to top. The images are not just fast, but they move brightly and smoothly thanks to its high refresh rate and G-sync capabilities. The sleek frame is elegant and beautiful on its own merit.

Pros:

  • It’s the widest and most curvaceous gaming monitor available right now
  • Superb temperature control; they cause no problem anywhere between 10 to 40 degrees Celsius.

Cons:

  • It lacks its own USB-C port
  • Takes up a lot of space
  • You may need you to plan the room around it

3. Alienware AW3418DW

Alienware AW3418DW Monitor Review

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Specs:

  • Size: 34”
  • Resolution: 3440 x 1440
  • Refresh rate: 120 Hz

Alienware is not the kind of brand that you’ll find spare parts for in your office; they’re a specialized gaming brand and are quite unapologetic about it. Their AW3418DW ultra-wide monitor is a great proof of what they are capable when it comes to meeting the needs of the illustrated minorities.

Its 21:9 aspect ratio offers an immersive experience without sacrificing speed. The contrast ratio of 1000:1 puts it at the same level as cinematic equipment, while its resolution will ensure no detail escapes your notice during your gameplay.

Pros:

  • Its response time of 4ms is the fastest currently available speed in the ultra-wide range
  • Great value for its niche: firmly under $900

Cons:

  • You may need to rethink your entire set up to ensure the frame remains stable
  • Rather heavy (26 pounds, plus accessories)

4. ASUS ROG Swift

ASUS ROG Swift Monitor Review

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Specs:

  • Size: 27”
  • Resolution: 2560 x 1440
  • Refresh rate: 144 Hz

Light, reliable, and remarkably potent, this monitor is designed to continue powering on for hours on end, without overloading your hardware or your eyes. The Asus Eye Care technology it uses is certified Flicker free and will prevent fatigue. Once you add the many adjustment capabilities offered by its ergonomic mount (from quick tilting, pivoting, and swiveling to easy wall mounting), you’ll see this is the kind of monitor meant to last.

These features do not detract from the raw power offered by its visual capabilities. Although the standard refresh rate is meant to be 144 Hz, it can overclock at 165 for up to two minutes in a row without overheating – perfect for those intense seconds that can bring you a completely new achievement.

Pros:

  • Mega-fast response rate and refresh rate (up to 1 m/s)
  • Accurate and bright colors
  • Dual USB 3.0 ports
  • GamePlus compatibility

Cons:

  • Pricey for its resolution
  • Gamma mode is on the dark side

5. LG 34UC89G

LG 34UC89G Monitor Review

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Specs:

  • Size: 34”
  • Resolution: 2560 x 1080
  • Refresh rate: 144 Hz

Extra width and In-Plane Switching technology are a pair made in heaven for gamers; they provide an immersive experience, minimum distortion from a variety of angles, and fast graphics meant to make you jump on your seat.

This highly-spec’ed monitor by LG shows the potential of this combination; despite avoiding the fluorescent branding and catchy names that pullulate the gaming scene, it never fails to offer the performance you’d expect from a specialized product. Intuitive controls, minimum lag, and a light frame make it a great option to round up a home gaming set up without stealing the show.

Pros:

  • Solid grayscale accuracy
  • Fast refresh rate
  • Integrates will Nvidia’s G-sync

Cons:

  • The colors can’t be adjusted completely
  • The greens are a bit flat

6. BenQ EL2870U

BenQ EL2870U Monitor Review

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Specs:

  • Size: 28”
  • Resolution: 3840 x 2160
  • Refresh rate: 60 Hz

High-end monitors may be the crowning jewel of your dreamed home PC, but they will mean little if budget constraints then force you to give up on a truly powerful video card or processor. If you are building a computer for the first time but are still willing to spend a bit on something better than corporate surplus stock, then the BenQ offers an efficient budget-friendly choice.

Available at under $500, it will not give you the ridiculous speeds or immersive angles of some of the other models of this list. However, this monitor’s response time always stays firmly under 1 ms, even when handling 4K graphics. Need to save energy when going back to serious mode? The HDR button will let you adjust your upper performance quickly between modes, toggling high dynamic range seamlessly.

Pros:

  • Affordable
  • Built-in speakers
  • Its own 3.5 mm headphone jack

Cons:

  • Relatively slow refresh rate
  • Flat
  • Does not use Nvidia G-sync

7. ASUS MG279Q

ASUS MG279Q Monitor Review

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Specs:

  • Size: 27”
  • Resolution: 2560 x 1440
  • Refresh rate: 90 Hz

The ASUS MG279Q aims to be the AMD equivalent to what the ASUS ROG is for NVIDIA users: the top-of-the-line monitor that will round out a well-integrated gaming system meant to work with internal harmony, rather than just competing for your resources.

AMD is now well-established as a potent open-source graphics alternative, and if there is something the gaming community loves, its the ability to tweak and improve things ourselves. This is why the designers of this monitor have gone out of their way to provide the best possible integration with FreeSync. Furthermore, the bright and sharp colors look well from pretty much all angles, and thanks to the light but sturdy bezel and hidden anti-gloss coating, you’ll be able to experiment with a variety of tilts and jumps.

Finally, this monitor offers extra simultaneous inputs, letting you add a gaming console on the side without moving everything around. When switching modes, it adapts the image quality quickly thanks to the internal scaler.

Pros:

  • Great quality even when using presets
  • The best monitor for AMD users
  • Light and discreet

Cons:

  • Lacks blur reduction
  • Moderate refresh rate

8. MSI Optix MAG 271CR

MSI Optix MAG 271CR Monitor Review

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Specs:

  • Size: 27”
  • Resolution: 1920 x 1080
  • Refresh rate: 144 Hz

Extravagant curves and immersive features are the go-to perks for role-playing fans, but if your drugs of choice are fast and competitive, then it makes sense to put response rates above everything else. At 1080 pixels, the resolution is not low except for those used to the absolute best, but it’s a worthy sacrifice in exchange for ensuring prolonged overclocking capabilities and response rates under 0.8 m/s latency. The contrast and color support are nothing to joke about either and are capable of highly realistic images.

Pros:

  • The fastest, without a doubt
  • Attractive RGB Lights
  • Light build

Cons:

  • Expensive for its resolution

9. AOC Agon AG73QCG

AOC Agon AG73QCG Monitor Review

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Specs:

  • Size: 27”
  • Resolution: 2560 x 1440
  • Refresh rate: 165 Hz

The AOC Agon has not lost any time targeting anyone other than professional E-sports players, but that doesn’t mean this monitor can’t hold a wide appeal. Even if losing a couple of kills won’t cost you money, you should still be able to feel the difference provided by an efficiently-installed G-sync processor and a superb resolution.

The refresh rate is also fast and rarely needs to overclock, and while it runs on a narrow range, it allows AOC to continue offering beautiful colors and crisp images even at top speeds.

Pros:

  • Fast refresh and response speeds
  • Good price for its resolution
  • Professional color contrast

Cons:

  • Limited angle appeal
  • Flimsy case

10. HP Omen X Emperium

HP Omen X Emperium Monitor Review

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Specs:

  • Size: 65”
  • Resolution: 4K UHD
  • Refresh rate: 144 Hz

So – this baby is real. It is probably the most expensive gaming monitor currently available, but if you have the privilege of an Emperor’s budget, then the HP Omen X Emperium should be a luxury to be considered.

Equally faithful when displaying movies or processing mega-fast gaming scenes, this massive monitor offers integrated surround pulse-pounding sound, NVIDIA integration, and vibrant colors worthy of real life.

Pros:

  • Unparalleled contrast
  • Unparalleled size
  • Superb grayscale

Cons:

  • Extravagant price
  • Needs a home and PC to match it

What Makes a Good Gaming Monitor Superb?

The image display world is a highly technical one. For those who have never delved deep into AV intricacies, deciding which specs matter can be a hard task. In all cases, we ought to highlight that not even NASA-worthy specs will provide good images unless combined with a good CPU and video card.

That being said, some of the key features to note are:

Resolution

This is the first thing that most people look at when shopping for a monitor, and for a very good reason too; it is perhaps the one that has the most visible effects on sharpness and the ability to spot details. A resolution of 1920×1080 (often advertised as simply ”1080p”) is the easiest one to find across standard screens and office monitors, but it’s no longer considered good for any screen above 25 inches.

A 2560x1440p resolution, also known as QHD (quad-high definition) or 1440p, can offer up to 77% more pixels but can still be enjoyed with a mid-range CPU. On the other end of the spectrum, a 4K resolution or Ultra-High-Definition is considered the gold standard. Without a high-end video card, though, you may not be able to appreciate the difference.

Flat versus Curved

If your focus is image quality alone, then flat screens will almost always provide better images and distortion-free pictures. If your computer is doubling as a work station or solo movie theater, then you will definitely prefer a flat, wide screen. However, gaming is just as much about becoming our character than enjoying neat graphics. Even a small curve can go a long way when it comes to immersion. This makes curved screens the dream of role-players and dungeon delvers around the world – at least, if you have enough space to room them as they deserve.

Refresh Rate

This highly technical feature described how fast each panel or pixel can refresh itself, therefore producing a completely new image. They are usually expressed in hertz per minute. As a golden rule, higher values mean that the monitor will be capable of handling faster movement without becoming blurry. Normal monitors usually average between 60 to 75 Hz, while most high-end gaming set ups can provide anywhere from 120 to 240 Hz.

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