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The 5 Best Budget And Cheap Gaming Monitors - Winter 2023 Reviews

Best Budget Gaming Monitors

Depending on your needs, even cheap and budget-friendly monitors can deliver a great gaming experience. While they may lack some advanced features and fancy designs found on more expensive models, budget monitors still offer low input lag, excellent response times, and variable refresh rate (VRR) technologies like FreeSync or G-SYNC. Budget gaming monitors are typically smaller with lower resolutions, but because the gaming monitor market has been expanding, you can still find 1440p budget gaming monitors.

We've bought and tested over 260 monitors, and below you'll find our recommendations for the best gaming monitors to buy on a budget. Also see our recommendations for the best monitors under $500, the best monitors under $200, and the best budget and cheap monitors.

  1. Best Budget Gaming Monitor

    The best budget gaming monitor we've tested is the ViewSonic XG2431. It's an impressive gaming monitor with more features than even more expensive options. It has a fast 240Hz refresh rate, and even though its 1080p resolution and 24-inch screen size may seem small to you, this is typical of budget monitors, and the lower resolution makes it easier for your graphics card to achieve a high frame rate. Despite its budget price, it's well-built, and the stand offers great ergonomics, making it easy to adjust to an ideal viewing position.

    The stand-out feature is the incredible motion handling, thanks to the quick response time across its entire refresh rate range. It also has a customizable backlight strobing feature to reduce persistence blur, where you can adjust the pulse width and phase of it, which is something many monitors can't do, meaning it's a nice addition to a budget-friendly monitor. Lastly, it has native FreeSync variable refresh (VRR) support to reduce screen tearing, and it's also G-SYNC compatible to work with NVIDIA graphics cards.

    See our review

  2. Best 27-Inch Budget Gaming Monitor

    If you want something bigger, consider the Gigabyte M27Q. There are trade-offs to getting this monitor over the ViewSonic XG2431 as it has a lower max refresh rate of 170Hz, and its backlight strobing feature isn't as versatile. However, it also has a larger screen with a 1440p resolution for sharper images and a more immersive gaming experience, so you have to decide whether you want sharper images or a higher refresh rate.

    It's an impressive gaming monitor as it has VRR support to reduce screen tearing, low input lag for a responsive feel, and a quick response time for smooth motion, but there's a bit more motion blur compared to the ViewSonic. It's a great choice if you tend to game in a bright room because it gets bright enough to fight glare, and the reflection handling is decent. It also has a few extra features to improve your overall experience, like a USB hub that features two USB ports if you want to charge your devices, and there's a USB-C port if you need to connect a laptop when you aren't gaming.

    See our review

  3. Best Ultrawide Budget Gaming Monitor

    If you want an even bigger screen with an ultrawide display, you'll have to pay a bit more than regular budget gaming monitors, but there are still some great ultrawide gaming monitors that cost less than others. If that's something you're interested in, then the Dell S3422DWG is a great choice. It has a 3440x1440 resolution with a wider screen than the Gigabyte M27Q for a more immersive gaming experience, so you'll see more of your game at once. It offers a great gaming experience thanks to its 144Hz refresh rate, native FreeSync support with G-SYNC compatibility, and low input lag.

    It has a different panel type than the Gigabyte M27Q, resulting in more black smearing with fast-moving objects, meaning its motion handling isn't as good. However, it delivers better picture quality in dark rooms thanks to its higher contrast and good HDR peak brightness. It also displays a wide range of colors in HDR, meaning it's a decent choice for gaming in HDR, as it's better than most budget monitors.

    See our review

  4. Best Cheap Gaming Monitor

    If you're on an even tighter budget and want a cheap gaming monitor, there are a few great options. You won't find ultrawide monitors like the Dell S3422DWG, so you'll find smaller displays with lower resolutions. If that's fine for you, the HP X24ih is a great cheap gaming monitor with the same 1080p resolution and 24-inch screen size as the ViewSonic XG2431. However, the reason it's cheaper is it has a max refresh rate of 144Hz. It isn't ideal if you're a competitive gamer, in which case you'll be better off with the ViewSonic, but if you want something simple for your first gaming monitor, you'll be happy with this one.

    Besides the lower refresh rate, it has many of the same characteristics as the ViewSonic, like the extremely fast response time, low input lag with any signal, and FreeSync VRR support to reduce screen tearing. Although it's a cheap monitor without many extra features, you can add a virtual crosshair that your system won't detect, giving you a competitive advantage while gaming.

    See our review

  5. Best 27-Inch Cheap Gaming Monitor

    If you find the 24-inch screen size too small, there are some cheap 27-inch gaming monitors, like the LG 27GL650F-B. It's very similar to the HP X24ih because it has a 144Hz native refresh rate with a 1080p resolution, and although it has slightly lower pixel density, the image clarity is still good. The main difference is that the LG has worse motion handling than the HP, so if you want amazing motion handling, go for the HP, but the response time on the LG is still fast. Like other budget and cheap monitors, it has VRR support in the form of native FreeSync, and it's also G-SYNC compatible.

    Its input lag remains low across its entire refresh rate range for a responsive feel. It has a flicker-free backlight that helps reduce eye strain during long gaming sessions, and it has the option to introduce flicker to reduce persistence blur, but it only works within a narrow range. While it doesn't have many extra features, it does have gamma adjustment and crosshair features to give you a competitive advantage while gaming.

    See our review

Notable Mentions

  • Acer Nitro XF243Y Pbmiiprx: The Acer Nitro XF243Y Pbmiiprx is a great cheap gaming monitor with similar specs as the HP X24ih, but it can be harder to find at times, so if you want something cheap and easy to buy, go for the HP. See our review
  • AOC CU34G2X: The AOC CU34G2X is an ultrawide monitor that's comparable to the Dell S3422DWG as it has similar specs and is in the same price range, but its picture quality isn't as good because it doesn't get as bright. See our review
  • LG 27GN750-B: The LG 27GN750-B is a 27-inch gaming monitor with a 240Hz refresh rate and a 1080p resolution, so it's a larger alternative to the ViewSonic XG2431. Get this if you want something bigger than the ViewSonic, but for the same price, you can also get the Gigabyte M27Q, which has a higher resolution at the cost of a lower refresh rate. See our review
  • Dell G2722HS: The Dell G2722HS is a cheap 27-inch gaming monitor like the LG 27GL650F-B, and it has a slightly higher 165Hz refresh rate, but it isn't as versatile for other uses as it doesn't support HDR and has worse picture quality. See our review

Recent Updates

  1. Dec 14, 2022: Replaced the AOC CU34G2X with the Dell S3422DWG for consistency with other articles; removed the Acer Nitro XV272U because it's hard to find; added the LG 27GL650F-B as the 'Best 27-Inch Cheap Gaming Monitor' for consistency with other articles; updated Notable Mentions based on changes and market availability.

  2. Oct 19, 2022: Restructured article to reflect user needs and current prices and availability; removed the Acer Nitro XF243Y and renamed the ViewSonic XG2431 as the 'Best Budget Gaming Monitor' because it's better overall; replaced the LG 27GN800-B and the Dell S3422DWG with the Acer Nitro XV272U and the AOC CU34G2X for consistency with other articles. Removed the Dell S2722DGM and added the Gigabyte M27Q as the 'Best 27-Inch Budget Gaming Monitor'; added the HP X24ih; updated Notable Mentions based on changes.

  3. Jul 27, 2022: Restructured article to reflect the current price of monitors; replaced the ASUS VG259QM with the ViewSonic XG2431 because it's better; removed the Gigabyte M27Q and the Dell S2722QC because they're expensive; replaced the Acer XV340CK with the easier-to-find Dell S3422DWG; added the LG 27GN800-B as the 'Best Console Gaming Monitor'.

  4. Apr 06, 2022: Replaced the Gigabyte M34WQ with the Acer Nitro XV340CK Pbmiipphzx, as it's significantly cheaper and offers similar performance overall. Removed a few out-of-date Notable Mentions, and refreshed the text throughout.

  5. Feb 09, 2022: Replaced the Dell S2721QS with the newer Dell S2722QC and replaced the Acer Nitro XV340CK with the Gigabyte M34WQ due to lack of availability; updated Notable Mentions based on changes.

All Reviews

Our recommendations are based on what we think are the best cheap gaming monitors currently available. They are adapted to be valid for most people, in each price range. Rating is based on our review, factoring in price and feedback from our visitors.

If you would prefer to make your own decision, here is the list of all of our budget monitor reviews. Be careful not to get too caught up in the details. Most monitors are good enough to please most people, and the things we fault monitors on are often not noticeable unless you really look for them.