Whether you only game occasionally or are simply on a budget, you can still get a decent gaming experience for less than $200. Monitors this size typically don't offer super-fast refresh rates or high-resolution screens, but as prices come down, budget monitors have become more feature-packed than ever before. Many budget monitors now even support newer gaming technologies like variable refresh rates and virtual on-screen displays.
We've reviewed over 100 monitors, and below you'll find our picks for the best gaming monitors under $200 that are available for purchase. If your budget is a bit more flexible, see our recommendations for the best budget gaming monitors, the best budget monitors, and the best G-SYNC monitors.
The best gaming monitor under $200 that we've tested so far is the Acer XF251Q. This 1080p monitor is an all-around good performer despite its budget price. It has a good build quality that feels sturdy, and the monitor is easily adjustable thanks to its great ergonomics.
The TN panel may not have great viewing angles, but it does have outstanding response time and input lag to provide you a smooth and responsive gaming experience. Also, it has a native 75Hz refresh rate and supports FreeSync. This monitor has decent peak brightness and reflection handling, making it a good choice for those with a bright room setting.
Sadly, it has a mediocre contrast ratio and poor viewing angles, which is expected from a TN panel. However, there are even some extra features that we only see on more expensive models, such as built-in speakers, a crosshair for shooter games, and a flicker-free backlight to reduce eye strain. All in all, this is the best gaming monitor under $200 we've tested so far.
The Dell P2417H is a decent monitor if you need something more versatile than the Acer XF251Q, and is one of the best gaming monitors under $200. The 60Hz refresh rate and lack of variable refresh rate support may be disappointing for gamers, but Dell does get a lot of things right to make this an all-purpose monitor.
This monitor has a low input lag, very good motion handling, and great out-of-the-box color accuracy. As with most of their Professional Series monitors, Dell didn't skimp on the ergonomics: the stand is sturdy and allows for all manner of adjustments as well as being VESA mountable. The 1080p resolution is a bit of a letdown, but overall, it's a decent monitor for any office.
Viewing angles are great on this IPS panel, along with impressive color accuracy and gray uniformity. Unfortunately, we can't say the same about black uniformity, as there's a significant amount of backlight bleeding. While it might not be as good as the Acer, its versatility makes the Dell one of the best gaming monitors you'll find in this price range.
If you like having a versatile gaming monitor but you're cramped for space, the Dell P2217H is a very similar, but smaller, alternative to the Dell P2417H. It performs almost identically to its big brother, with almost identical picture quality, but the unit we tested has slightly worse black uniformity, but this could vary from unit to unit. Its small size means will allow you to place it comfortably in a smaller gaming setup, which is good for those living in a smaller apartment or a dorm room.
Although the P2417H is the most versatile gaming monitor under $200 that we've tested so far, if you have limited space, the P2217H is a good smaller alternative.
The best 27 inch gaming monitor under $200 is the HP 27f. It's a decent overall monitor with an IPS panel that's a good choice for gaming but should please most type of people with any other use.
This monitor has a native 75Hz refresh rate, but it only works at 1080p. At non-native resolutions, it has a max refresh rate of 60Hz, but most graphics cards are able to upscale content, so this shouldn't be a problem for most people. It supports FreeSync VRR to reduce screen tearing, but it doesn't work with newer NVIDIA graphics cards since it doesn't have a DisplayPort input. The input lag is low and it has great motion handling. The viewing angles are wide, so it's a good choice for co-op gaming and the out-of-the-box color accuracy is impressive.
Unfortunately, it has a mediocre contrast ratio and black uniformity, which is expected from an IPS panel. However, it can get fairly bright and has great reflection handling, so you shouldn't have any issues placing it in moderately-lit rooms. Overall, this is the best 27 inch gaming under $200 that we've tested so far.
If you want a 27 inch monitor with a VA panel for better dark room performance, then check out the Samsung CF398. It doesn't have great out-of-the-box color accuracy like the HP 27f, but it has better motion handling. Although it has a max refresh rate of 60Hz, enabling the FreeSync mode on the on-screen menu allows the refresh rate to increase to 72Hz and it can go as low as 48Hz. It has a good contrast ratio, which is typical for a VA panel, but that comes at the cost of its viewing angles, which are disappointing. Luckily, it has excellent gray uniformity and great reflection handling, but it doesn't get very bright.
If you're looking for the best 27 inch gaming monitor under $200, check out the HP, but if you want a monitor with better dark room performance, look into the Samsung.
05/22/2020: Minor text and structure changes, updated notable mentions.
Our recommendations are based on what we think are the best gaming monitors under $200. They are adapted to be valid for most people. 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 under $200. 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.