1080p monitors were the gold standard for a long time. In recent years, that torch has passed to 1440p resolutions, which deliver a sharper image with larger monitors. New 1080p monitors with faster refresh rates and larger panels have started hitting the market, though, and many of these deliver outstanding gaming performance at affordable prices.
We've tested nearly 140 monitors and below are our recommendations for the best 1080p monitors to purchase. See our recommendations for the best 1440p monitors, the best 4k monitors, and the best monitors under $200.
The best 1080p monitor we've tested is the Acer Nitro XV273 Xbmiiprzx. Although it's primarily designed for gaming, it's packed with great features, making it a good choice for productivity and media consumption. It has a simple design that fits into most settings, with thin bezels that are well-suited for multi-monitor setups. It has good ergonomics and wide viewing angles, allowing you to share work or content on your screen with others with ease.
One surprising aspect is its exceptional out-of-the-box color accuracy, and even though this varies between units, you may not need to get it calibrated. Its superb response time results in almost no motion blur in fast-moving scenes, and it has an optional Black Frame Insertion that can further improve clarity. It has a 240Hz refresh rate that provides an incredibly smooth desktop and gaming experience, and it has FreeSync support and G-SYNC compatibility to reduce screen tearing.
Unfortunately, although it supports HDR, it can't display a wide color gamut, so HDR content doesn't look all that different from SDR. Also, its IPS panel has a low contrast ratio that makes blacks look grayish, which isn't ideal for dark rooms. On the plus side, it has decent reflection handling and gets more than bright enough to overcome glare. It also has four USB 3.0 ports that you can use for charging and a pair of built-in speakers. Overall, it's a well-rounded monitor that should please most people.
If you find the Acer Nitro XV273 Xbmiiprzx too expensive, then check out the ASUS VG279Q. It doesn't have a 240Hz refresh rate like the XV273X, as its native refresh rate is 144Hz. However, the ASUS has even better ergonomics, and its IPS panel also provides wide viewing angles. It has a very quick response time, incredibly low input lag, and both FreeSync support and G-SYNC compatibility. Like the Acer, this monitor has excellent out-of-the-box accuracy, good reflection handling, and high peak brightness. However, it doesn't have any USB ports and doesn't support HDR. There's a fair amount of clouding throughout the screen, which can be distracting in dark scenes. That said, uniformity varies between units, so your experience may be different.
Overall, the Acer is a better choice for most people due to its faster response time and higher refresh rate. However, if your budget is tight and you don't mind a few compromises, the ASUS is a good alternative.
The best 1080p gaming monitor we've tested is the ASUS VG279QM. It's one of the best gaming monitors we've tested, as it has a 240Hz refresh rate that can be overclocked up to 280Hz to provide an even smoother and more responsive gaming experience. It has a few extra features, including built-in speakers, so you may not need to get a dedicated setup if you don't want to.
It has an extremely quick response time at its max refresh rate, resulting in almost no motion blur. Even at 60Hz, the response time is outstanding, and even though there's a Black Frame Insertion feature to improve the appearance of motion, you likely won't need it. The monitor has native FreeSync support, and it's certified by NVIDIA to be G-SYNC compatible. The picture quality is great; it has great out-of-the-box color accuracy, it gets bright enough to combat glare, reflection handling is decent, and it has really wide viewing angles.
It has an extremely low input lag when playing at 280Hz, but sadly, it increases quite a bit at 60Hz. Like most IPS panels, it has a low contrast ratio, so blacks appear closer to gray when viewed in the dark. On the upside, it has outstanding ergonomics, and it's well-built, so you shouldn't have to worry about any build quality issues for a while. All in all, most people should be pleased with it, making it the best 1080p gaming monitor we've tested.
If you prefer something with a much higher 360Hz refresh rate, then look into the ASUS ROG Swift 360Hz PG259QN. It has worse ergonomics than the ASUS VG279QM because it has a more narrow swivel range, but it still has good height adjustment and you can rotate it into portrait mode. It has an extremely wide refresh rate range with native G-SYNC support and it's FreeSync compatible as well. The response time at its max refresh rate is outstanding and it remains excellent at 60Hz, so you know motion looks crisp no matter the frame rate of your game. Also, input lag is incredibly low, and unlike the VG279QM, it stays low at 60Hz. The 25 inch screen may be too small for some, but it has a higher pixel density than 27 inch screens.
If you want the best 1080p gaming monitor, you should enjoy the VG279QM, but if you need something with a 360Hz refresh rate, then check out the PG259QN.
The best 1080p monitor that we've tested in the budget category is the Acer Nitro XF243Y Pbmiiprx. It's fairly well-built and has excellent ergonomics thanks to its round stand that allows for a 360-degree rotation. It's good to use in a well-lit environment because it gets bright enough to combat glare and has good reflection handling, so visibility shouldn't be an issue. Also, it has wide viewing angles, making it easier to share your screen with others around you.
It has everything most gamers need, a native 144Hz refresh rate that can be overclocked to 165Hz, native FreeSync support to reduce screen tearing, and G-SYNC compatibility. The input lag is incredibly low whether you're gaming at its native resolution or 60Hz, and the remarkable response time results in minimal motion blur. It has a Black Frame Insertion feature; however, it isn't usable simultaneously with VRR and only works within a narrow frequency range.
It supports HDR10, but sadly, it doesn't deliver a true experience because it can't display a wide color gamut and doesn't get bright enough to make highlights pop. Also, it has a low contrast ratio that makes blacks appear gray when viewed in the dark, but that's typical of IPS panels. Besides these small issues, if you're on a budget, this is the best 1080p monitor that we've tested.
Jan 26, 2021: Replaced the Dell Alienware AW2521HF with the ASUS PG259QN and renamed category to '360Hz Alternative'; replaced the LG 27GL650F-B with the Acer Nitro XF243Y because it's better overall.
Nov 27, 2020: Minor text and structure changes, removed ViewSonic Elite XG270.
Sep 29, 2020: Added the ViewSonic Elite XG270 and moved the ASUS VG279Q to alternative; replaced the Dell P2417H with the Acer Nitro XV273X; removed the LG 34UC79G-B; added the LG 27GL650F-B as 'Best Budget'.
Jul 31, 2020: Removed the LG 29UM69G-B and the Dell P2217H; added the ASUS VG279QM and the Dell AW2521HF as gaming picks.
Our recommendations are based on what we think are the best 1080p 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 1080p 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.