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Selecting the right Gaming Monitor

For PC gamers, finding the right gaming monitor is the all important finishing touch that will make your gaming PC ready to rumble. Gaming monitors come in all different shapes and sizes, from compact models great for dorm rooms to ultra wide and curved gaming monitors that give you a truly immersive experience. Depending on the task you plan to use the display for and the general graphical specs your system is built for, the price and features can vary significantly.

For example, if you are looking for a top of the line gaming monitor, 144Hz monitors are capable of very high refresh rates and some of the smoothest gameplay possible. They are a great choice for gamers who value extreme speed and high frame rates, which also makes them a must for competitive esports players. Another technology called High Dynamic Range HDR gives you improved color accuracy that is ideal not just for gaming, but for professional animation and video editing as well.

With so many different types out there, it is important to know what you are looking for in a gaming monitor. Factors like whether you prefer competitive shooters or single player RPGs, whether you have an AMD or NVIDIA based graphics card, and, of course, the specs and aspect ratio of your PC will all help determine the most important features you should be looking for.

What Kind of Panel Should You Choose?

Todays gaming monitors use several different LCD panel technologies to create their images, each of which has its own strengths. VA panels are popular for their excellent contrast ratio, which offers deeper blacks and a generally vibrant picture. They are often best suited for slower paced and single player titles rather than faster gaming.

IPS panels, by contrast, are great for fast paced gaming because of their excellent response times, or the time it takes them to transition between colors. They also have an exceptional color range, making them a great choice for anyone in visual professions like design, photography, or video production. TN panels, meanwhile, are an older technology but highly budget friendly.

What is the Difference Between G Sync and FreeSync?

Specific brands such as NVIDIA and AMD also have proprietary adaptive sync technology that you can find within monitors that will work to reduce latency and improve response times. For example, G sync compatible monitors use the technology found in NVIDIA GPUs to synchronize the refresh rate of the monitor to the graphics card reducing screen tearing.

FreeSync is AMDs alternative to G sync and uses similar technology to reduce screen tearing when using AMD graphics cards. In addition, AMD graphics cards can use supersampling to virtually increase the displays resolution and enhance image clarity. Luckily, there are many gaming monitors out there that are compatible with NVIDIA G sync and AMD FreeSync technology.

What Gaming Monitor Is Best for My Graphics Card?

Finding the best gaming monitor for you has more to do with matching the display to your system and not the overall power or features of the screen. This is because your monitor can only display what your gaming PCs graphical processing unit or GPU is able to output. Thus, just because you are playing on a 4K gaming monitor does not mean that your PC can display games at 4K.

Depending on the type of game, monitors can prioritize refresh rates and response times over resolution because these specifications have the most significant impact on how it feels to play games. Playing in higher resolutions is possible, but hardware requirements quickly rise along with image quality. Thus, whatever level of graphical performance you are going for, remember that it starts with PC components like your graphics card, CPU, and RAM. They are the foundation of your gaming experience, but your monitor is responsible for bringing it to life.

It is also crucial to look at what kinds of ports your monitor offers and which signal types it is compatible with. Most monitors support at least DisplayPort and HDMI, and many support additional standards like Thunderbolt 3 and 4. Note, however, that many of these standards have multiple versions, and if you’re looking to maximize graphics performance, it is worth checking to ensure that a monitor supports the same version as your PC.

Micro Center’s selection of quality gaming monitors will help take your PCs graphical performance to new heights. Explore great deals on top monitor brands like Acer, Samsung, Dell, ASUS, and more - and don’t forget to check our Help Center for useful advice on choosing the best computer monitor for your gaming rig.