While even the cheapest monitors can be used for gaming, they don't all deliver the same performance. The best gaming monitors have fast response times that produce very little motion blur, as well as extremely low input lag to make sure every key press matches what is going on on the screen. In recent years, new gaming technologies have emerged that have drastically changed the way we game. AMD's FreeSync and NVIDIA's G-SYNC deliver fast, tear-free motion. Ever faster response times have become the norm. There are so many models out there with such a wide variety of features that it can be hard to choose.
We've reviewed 64 monitors, and below you will find our recommendations for the best gaming monitors for a variety of needs and budgets. See also our recommendations for the best gaming monitors for PS4, the best gaming monitors for Xbox One, the best curved gaming monitors, and the best gaming monitors for PC.
The best gaming monitor that we've reviewed so far is the ASUS ROG Swift PG279QZ. It has a 27-inch IPS panel with a 1440p resolution and wide viewing angles that favor co-op gaming. It has a decent picture quality and is equipped with a few neat gaming features like NVIDIA G-SYNC support, 144 Hz refresh rate, and some virtual overlays including a timer, a frame rate counter, and even a crosshair to assist your aiming in games that do not offer one.
It responds immediately to your actions due to the outstanding low input lag that remains low even when gaming on a console that can only deliver a 60 Hz refresh rate. Fast-moving objects look crisp with minimal blur trail due to the fast response time, but you can introduce flicker through the supported NVIDIA ULMB technology to make the image even clearer.
Unfortunately, dark room performance is hurt by the native contrast ratio and the disappointing black uniformity that fails to deliver deep blacks in a dark room. In any case, the PG279QZ will deliver an excellent gaming experience that will satisfy even the most serious gamers.
The PG279QZ is the newer version of the ASUS ROG PG279Q, which has a very similar performance.
If you like the gaming performance of the ASUS ROG Swift PG279QZ but would prefer a FreeSync compatible monitor for your Xbox One or AMD graphics card, check out the Samsung CHG70. The CHG70 is an excellent 27" gaming monitor that delivers decent overall picture quality, excellent motion handling, and excellent low input lag. It has a slightly slower response time than the PG279QZ, and unfortunately, the image degrades when viewed at an angle. Overall, it is a versatile gaming monitor that should please most people.
If you want a great 4k gaming experience, check out the LG 27UK650. It delivers great clear motion with little blur thanks to the excellent fast response time. It has excellent low input lag that is perfect for gaming, and it supports AMD's FreeSync VRR technology, great if you have an AMD graphics card or Xbox One S/X. Unfortunately, since it is a 60 Hz monitor, the VRR range is limited to 40-60 Hz, so you might still see some screen tearing if your refresh rate drops below this range.
Unlike the ASUS ROG PG279QZ, it can't introduce flicker to improve motion clarity. Like the Samsung CHG70, it supports HDR, but unfortunately, it has a narrow HDR color gamut and it isn't very bright in HDR, so the effects aren't as noticeable.
Overall, it is a great gaming monitor that should please most people, and the large high-resolution screen is great for a variety of uses.
If you have an older computer that can't run most games at higher resolutions, or if you mainly play older games that don't support higher resolutions, the BenQ Zowie XL2540 is the best 1080p gaming monitor that we have tested so far. The BenQ Zowie's biggest feature is the lightning fast 240 Hz refresh rate, which delivers an extremely wide VRR range when paired with a FreeSync-compatible graphics card.
Paired with the extremely low input lag, the Zowie is an excellent gaming monitor even for professional competitive gamers. Motion is crisp and smooth, with almost no motion blur, thanks to the extremely fast response time. Fast games can be further improved by enabling the XL2540's Black Frame Insertion feature.
Unfortunately, it isn't the greatest for dark room gaming, as it can't produce true blacks and has poor black uniformity. Overall, it is a great 1080p gaming monitor that should please even the most demanding gamer.
If you are looking for a cheaper monitor than our top picks, the best budget gaming monitor we've tested is the ViewSonic XG2402. It has an excellent 144 Hz refresh rate and it supports AMD FreeSync, ensuring a smooth, tear-free gaming experience. The XG2402 has an outstanding response time, so fast-moving objects look great, with very little motion blur.
It has excellent low input lag and supports FreeSync across HDMI and DisplayPort, which is great. Some people might find the 1080p, 24" screen too small, but it's great for casual gaming or in a dorm.
Unfortunately, the XG2402 uses a TN panel, and like IPS monitors, it doesn't look as good in a dark room. Unlike IPS monitors, it also doesn't have very wide viewing angles, so it is best enjoyed from directly in front. Overall, it is a decent monitor for mixed-usage, but it's a great budget gaming monitor that should please most people (for more options, see our recommendations for the best budget gaming monitors).
If you find the size and resolution of the ViewSonic XG2402 limiting, but would like a monitor with a larger screen that can display more detail, then get the ASUS PB277Q. It has a 27" TN panel with a 1440p resolution and, just like the ViewSonic, the image deteriorates if you are not sitting directly in front. The refresh rate is limited to 75 Hz, but on the upside, the PB277Q has an excellent fast response time that makes fast-moving content look very crisp. It is also very responsive, thanks to the low input lag, and will keep most gamers happy.
Our recommendations are based on what we think are the best 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 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.