No gaming monitor is perfect for everyone. The best monitor for you depends on your needs, from the equipment you'll be playing on to even the specific games you'll be playing. The best gaming monitors have fast response times that produce very little motion blur and extremely low input lag to make sure every key press matches what's happening 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. 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 over 110 monitors, and below you'll find our recommendations for the best gaming monitors for a variety of needs and budgets. For the best console gaming monitors, see our articles about the best gaming monitors for PS4 and the best gaming monitors for Xbox One. See also our recommendations for the best curved gaming monitors. If you're looking for the best gaming experience possible, check our recommendations for the best gaming mice.
The best FreeSync monitor that we've tested so far is the ASUS TUF VG27AQ. This monitor combines a sharp 1440p resolution and a 144Hz refresh rate for an immersive gaming experience with smooth motion handling. Its FreeSync support reduces screen tearing, and owners of NVIDIA graphics cards can also take advantage of it, as it's compatible with G-SYNC. The monitor feels well-built, and the stand has excellent ergonomics, allowing for all manner of adjustments.
This monitor has an IPS panel with wide viewing angles, which is great for co-op gaming. Gray uniformity is excellent, so you shouldn't notice any dirty screen effect or vignette around the corners. There aren't many extra features on this monitor, but it does have integrated speakers if you need them. Also, the backlight is flicker-free, which can help with eye strain on long gaming sessions.
Unfortunately, as is expected of most IPS monitors, its contrast ratio is also low, making blacks look grayish in the dark. While it does support HDR, it can't display a wide color gamut, and its peak brightness isn't enough to bring out small specular highlights. Overall, it delivers outstanding gaming performance, making it the best FreeSync gaming monitor we've tested.
If you're looking for a monitor with a better response time for improved motion handling, check out the LG 27GL850-B. Its ergonomics are worse than the ASUS TUF VG27AQ, but despite having a lower refresh rate, the LG has a better response time at its max refresh rate, and the response time is much better at 60Hz, which is great for console gamers. Like the ASUS, it has an IPS panel, so it has wide viewing angles that come at the cost of its dark room performance, which isn't good due to the disappointing contrast ratio and poor black uniformity. However, it performs well in bright rooms thanks to its good reflection handling and good peak brightness.
If you're looking for the best FreeSync gaming monitor we've seen, check out the ASUS, but if you want better motion handling, the LG is also a great choice.
The best gaming monitor with native G-SYNC support we've seen so far is the ViewSonic Elite XG270QG. It's an excellent gaming monitor with a 1440p resolution and a 144Hz refresh rate that can be overclocked to 165Hz. Even if you also want to use it for your at-home office setup, it's a very good overall monitor most people should be happy with.
This monitor has an outstanding response time at its max refresh rate, and it's also excellent when playing at 60Hz. It has a black frame insertion feature to improve the appearance of motion, but like most monitors, it can't be used when G-SYNC is enabled. The input lag is really low, and although it's slightly higher than most monitors at 60Hz, most people won't notice this. It has some nice extra features like built-in speakers, the ability to put a crosshair on the screen for FPS gamers, and it has RGB illumination. It's a well-built monitor and the stand allows you to adjust it in a number of ways, including putting it into portrait mode.
Unfortunately, it has a low contrast ratio, so blacks appear closer to gray, it doesn't support HDR, and it has bad out-of-the-box color accuracy, so you need to get it calibrated to enjoy it to the fullest. On the upside, it has wide viewing angles if you want to use it for co-op gaming and it gets bright enough to combat glare. All in all, it's the best G-SYNC monitor we've seen so far.
If you want something cheaper with similar gaming performance, then check out the Dell S2716DGR/S2716DG. Its 144Hz refresh rate can't be overclocked to 165Hz like the ViewSonic Elite XG270QG, but it has an even better response time, both at its max refresh rate and at 60Hz, resulting in motion with almost no motion blur. Its input lag is also very low, but it doesn't have many extra gaming features. It has a TN panel, so picture quality isn't good as it has awful black uniformity, a low contrast ratio, and narrow viewing angles. On the upside, it's well-built, and like most Dell monitors, it has outstanding ergonomics.
Overall, the ViewSonic is the best G-SYNC gaming monitor we've seen and you can't go wrong with it, but if you want to save some money, then the Dell is also a good alternative.
The best gaming monitor for esports players is the ASUS VG279QM. It's one of the best gaming monitors we've tested so far with an incredible 280Hz refresh rate. Although its 1080p resolution is low if you want to use it for the office or watching videos, it doesn't put too much stress on your graphics card when gaming.
Motion handling on this monitor is simply incredible. Its response time at its max refresh rate is one of the best we've seen so far, so motion looks exceptionally clear. The response time at 60Hz is also incredible if you want to use it for console gaming, and it has a black frame insertion feature. The input lag is exceptionally low, but sadly, the input lag at 60Hz is too high for console gamers. It has native FreeSync support, but it's also certified by NVIDIA to be G-SYNC compatible. Additionally, picture quality is good on this monitor with its great peak brightness, wide viewing angles, great out-of-the-box color accuracy, and excellent gray uniformity.
Sadly, it's not ideal for gaming in the dark due to its IPS panel, which has a low contrast ratio, but its black uniformity is actually one of the best we've seen on a monitor. It also has outstanding ergonomics, allowing you to place it however you like in your gaming setup. Overall, it's one of the best gaming monitors with a 1080p resolution we've seen, and most esports players should be happy with it.
The best ultrawide gaming monitor we've tested so far is the LG 34GN850-B. This is one of LG's Ultragear gaming monitors that features a 34-inch curved screen. Its 21:9 aspect ratio is great for an immersive gaming experience, and its 1440p resolution brings out every little detail in your games. If you care about color accuracy, the good thing is that this monitor comes with an sRGB mode that's impressively accurate and has USB ports on the back.
As expected of a gaming monitor, its response time and input lag are superb, so even if you play at 60Hz, it's great for console gamers. Its 144Hz refresh rate can be overclocked up to 160Hz, and it has FreeSync support and G-SYNC compatibility. It delivers a pretty decent HDR gaming experience, but it doesn't get bright enough to make highlights stand out in HDR movies. Thankfully, there's very little dirty screen effect, although this can vary from one unit to another.
Sadly, like most IPS displays, it doesn't have the best contrast ratio, so it's not ideal for dark rooms, and while it has great peak brightness, it may not be enough for a brightly-lit environment. However, it has a few extra gaming features that can be useful for some, such as the ability to put a crosshair in shooter games, and a black stabilizer feature to make objects more visible in dark scenes. Plus, if you game for an extended period, the flicker-free backlight can be quite handy.
If you want to take immersion to the next level with an even wider monitor, check out the Samsung C49RG9/CRG9. Unlike the LG 34GN850-B's 21:9 aspect ratio, this monitor is much wider at a whopping 32:9, which is equivalent to two 1440p monitors placed side by side. Its VA panel has a decent contrast ratio, but black uniformity is rather poor, as there's noticeable clouding throughout the screen. As with most VA panels, viewing angles are disappointing, but the monitor's curved panel does help, making it easier for you to see the sides. As for HDR performance, this monitor has a decent wide color gamut and an impressive peak brightness to make highlights pop in HDR content.
Overall, the LG is a better choice for an ultrawide gaming monitor, as the size fits easily on most desks, but if you want the most immersive experience you can get, consider the Samsung.
The best budget gaming monitor we've tested so far is the ViewSonic XG2402. It doesn't have the most stylish design with its thick bezels, but it's well-built, and it has good ergonomics so that you can adjust the monitor easily to your optimal viewing position. Although it has a basic 1080p resolution, its smaller 24-inch screen results in a higher pixel density, which keeps images and text looking sharp.
As expected of most TN panels, its response time and input lag are superb, but contrast and viewing angles suffer in consequence. For a budget monitor, the out-of-the-box color accuracy is surprisingly good. Also, it has a 144Hz refresh rate that makes motion look incredibly smooth, and it supports FreeSync technology to reduce screen tearing. It's also compatible with G-SYNC; however, it requires a DisplayPort connection for it to work.
Sadly, there's no HDR support, which is somewhat expected for a monitor in this price range. It does come with quite a few extra features, such as built-in speakers and USB 3.0 ports so that you can charge your mobile devices. All in all, if you're shopping for a gaming monitor on a tight budget, the ViewSonic is a great choice.
07/16/2020: Added the ASUS VG279QM as 'Best esports Gaming Monitor'.
06/23/2020: Replaced the ASUS PG279QZ with the ViewSonic Elite XG270QG.
06/12/2020: Replaced LG 34GK950F-B with LG 34GN850-B.
05/15/2020: Minor text and structure changes, no change in recommendations.
03/20/2020: Added Dell Alienware AW2720HF to notable mentions.
Our recommendations are based on what we think are the best PC 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.