The very best excessive refresh fee screens

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High refresh rate gaming monitors

(Picture credit score: Alienware, MSI, Acer)

The very best excessive refresh fee screens are what fashionable PC gaming is all about. Nevertheless, you will want the perfect graphics playing cards to take full benefit of those great shows. As soon as you have gamed over 240Hz, it is powerful to return all the way down to 60Hz.

What else you need in a gaming monitor is as much as you, and boy, are there loads of options and applied sciences to ponder with the newest panels. Must you go for an IPS or VA panel, as an illustration. That’s a conundrum and a half. And what about panel, measurement, form, and determination? Is the 16:9 facet ratio nonetheless probably the most versatile and suitable, or is ultrawide the way in which to go? Do curved panels really add something? And what about decision? Is 4K the one approach to go? Does 1440p strike a greater steadiness? Is 1080p out of date?

As if all that wasn’t sufficient to go on, there’s loads extra to contemplate when deciding on a excessive refresh fee monitor for gaming. There’s the visible minefield that’s HDR help, as an illustration. Subsequent up, varied adaptive refresh applied sciences, together with Nvidia G-Sync and AMD FreeSync, each of which are available a number of flavors. And what about response instances? Are claimed pixel response claims dependable and even remotely related?

Oh, and value. Always remember the sordid matter of cash. The very best excessive refresh fee screens ain’t low cost, sadly. However consider it as an funding into your gaming ecosystem. 

If all that appears like so much to soak up, do not fret. We have examined, rated, and performed video games on (somebody has to do it) the newest panels round to place collectively this roundup of the perfect excessive refresh fee screens accessible. 

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MSI MPG Artymis 343CQR high refresh rate gaming monitor

(Picture credit score: MSI)

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MSI MPG Artymis 343CQR high refresh rate gaming monitor

(Picture credit score: MSI)

1. MSI MPG ARTYMIS 343CQR

The very best excessive refresh fee ultrawide is approach forward of the curve

Specs

Display measurement: 34-inch

Panel sort: VA

Side ratio: 21:9

Native decision: 3440 x 1440

Response time: 1ms (MPRT)

Refresh fee: 165Hz

Brightness: 550cd/m2

Extras: AMD FreeSync, DisplayHDR 400

Causes to purchase

+VA panel positively pops+Excessive curve is severely immersive+Glorious brightness and distinction

Causes to keep away from

VA panel is not fairly on par with an IPS

For some time, it appeared like odds-on curved panels would assimilate the entire gaming market. Extra lately, the recognition of curved LCD screens appears to have tailed off just a bit. For certain, curved HDTVs proved to be a fad.

However with the MPG ARTYMIS 343CQR, MSI has clearly determined that if it’s going to maintain religion with curved PC screens, it can completely personal the difficulty. This factor has an extremely tight 1000R curve. Meaning the arc of the panel is such that, when prolonged full circle, the radius of stated circle could be only one meter. That is one severely bent display.

Past that, crucial speeds and feeds embrace 34-inch ultra-wide panel proportions, 3440 x 1440 decision, 165Hz refresh, 1ms response, and VESA DisplayHDR 400 Certification. Underpinning all that’s the 343CQR’s different eyebrow tweaker, past the intense curve, specifically VA panel expertise. The response has been the undoing of many a VA panel, so it’s price noting the claimed response of 1ms is courtesy of the extra forgiving shifting image response time (MPRT) metric.

As a substitute, what actually stands out is the punch and pizazz of the 34-inch panel. VA inherently has higher distinction than IPS. Mix that with absolutely 550 nits-worth of backlighting, and this display positively zings. Because it occurs, the intense curve additionally received us over. For pure visible spectacle and gaming immersion, nothing else on this group of excessive refresh fee screens comes shut. It’s fabulous.

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AOC AGON AG273QXP high refresh rate gaming monitor

(Picture credit score: AOC)

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AOC AGON AG273QXP high refresh rate gaming monitor

(Picture credit score: AOC)

2. AOC Agon AG273QXP

The messiah of screens? Not fairly. However it’s Goldilocks-good

Specs

Display measurement: 27-inch

Panel sort: IPS

Side ratio: 16:9

Native decision: 2560 x 1440

Response time: 1ms (GtG)

Refresh fee: 170Hz

Brightness: 400cd/m2

Extras: Nvidia G-Sync Appropriate, AMD FreeSync Premium Professional, DisplayHDR 400

Causes to purchase

+Beautiful 1440p IPS panel+Low latency, quick response

Causes to keep away from

Not a real HDR expertise

Why, precisely, does the AOC Agon AG273QXP run at 170Hz refresh? Is it a cynical advertising transfer designed to offer AOC’s newest gaming panel a superficial edge over the standard 165Hz suspects? Is there some particular technical purpose for the additional 5Hz?

One factor is for certain; there’s completely no likelihood of recognizing the distinction between 165Hz and 170Hz in-game. It’s exhausting sufficient to choose 165Hz from 144Hz and even 240Hz reliably. An additional 5Hz? No likelihood.

It’s a pity to be distracted by such trivia as a result of the AOC Agon AG273QXP really has masses going for it. That 170Hz panel is a 1440p IPS merchandise, making it one thing of a goldilocks mannequin for contemporary gaming. Not too many pixels. Not too few. However simply the fitting steadiness between visible element and body fee.

To that, you’ll be able to add extras like adaptive sync help within the type of AMD FreeSync Premium Professional and Nvidia G-Sync Compatibility, plus VESA DisplayHDR 400 certification. Rounding all of it out is a claimed response time of 1ms.

Yup, this factor ticks a whole lot of packing containers on paper. And so it proves in observe. It’s definitely each bit as punchy a panel because the 400cd/m2 spec implies. Is it actually good for a 1ms response? Unlikely, in absolute phrases. However set the overdrive to medium, and it’s a speedy monitor with minimal blur and no ghosting.

CyberPunk 2077 seems to be wonderful, that’s for certain. The Agon sports activities a fairly respectable HDR implementation, too. At the least it does for an HDR 400 panel that lacks native dimming. Like every other HDR 400 display, it’s not a real HDR expertise. However that is nonetheless an important excessive refresh fee monitor.

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Acer Predator XB253QGX high refresh rate gaming monitor

(Picture credit score: Acer)

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Acer Predator XB253QGX high refresh rate gaming monitor

(Picture credit score: Acer)

3. Acer Predator XB253QGX

The very best 240Hz gaming monitor rocks a 0.5ms response

Specs

Display measurement: 25-inch

Panel sort: IPS

Side ratio: 16:9

Native decision: 1920 x 1080

Response time: 0.5ms (MPRT)

Refresh fee: 240Hz

Brightness: 400cd/m2

Extras: Nvidia G-Sync Appropriate, DisplayHDR 400

Causes to purchase

+Significantly snappy response+Very low latency+First rate IPS picture high quality

Causes to keep away from

Some ghosting

1080p not your bag? Higher jog on because the Acer Predator XB253QGX received’t be for you. It isn’t actually for many of us, both, given 1440p is a greater all-around compromise for many players from a purely visible level. But when ultra-low latency and frames charges excessive sufficient to offer you a nosebleed appears like your factor, this 1080p 25-incher must be in your shortlist. 

It’s similar to the Alienware 25 however clocks in at a mere 240Hz to the Alienware’s outrageous 360Hz. In fact, solely probably the most demanding esports addicts will be capable to inform the distinction. However if you’re that delicate to latency, the Acer’s 1080p decision really is sensible. In spite of everything, the less the pixels, the upper your body fee.

Because it occurs, this Acer is barely extra vibrant than the ostensibly an identical Lenovo Legion Y25-25, even when it isn’t as punchy because the a lot pricer Alienware. As with many screens of this kind, you’ll be able to fine-tune pixel response via an overdrive setting. Predictably, probably the most aggressive setting introduces some ghosting. However set to medium, this can be a very fast IPS monitor. That stated, even with a claimed MPRT response time of simply 0.5ms, this isn’t a completely blur-free monitor. That’s LCD expertise for you.

In fact, it’s in pure visible punch the place a 1080p panel like this stumbles. There’s considerably much less element on provide than a 1440p monitor, a lot much less a 4K display. This is able to not be our weapon of selection for absorbing the sheer spectacle of Cyberpunk 2077, that’s for certain.

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Alienware AW2521H high refresh rate gaming monitor

(Picture credit score: Alienware)

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Alienware AW2521H high refresh rate gaming monitor

(Picture credit score: Alienware)

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Alienware AW2521H high refresh rate gaming monitor

(Picture credit score: Alienware)

4. Alienware 25 AW2521H

Hitting 360Hz is the last word in mega Hz

Specs

Display measurement: 25-inch

Panel sort: IPS

Side ratio: 16:9

Native decision: 1920 x 1080

Response time: 1ms (GtG)

Refresh fee: 360Hz

Brightness: 400cd/m2

Extras: Nvidia G-Sync, Nvidia Reflex

Causes to purchase

+The last word esports panel+Punchy picture high quality+Glorious latency and response+Built-in G-Sync chip

Causes to keep away from

240Hz is fairly comparableDear for 1080p

There’s an elephant on this excessive refresh fee monitor round-up. And it’s the inevitable query of diminishing returns. When, precisely, do they kick in? 165Hz? 240Hz? How about 360Hz? Oh sure, this up to date Alienware 25 is sweet for the total 360. In purely experiential and subjective phrases, it’s not simple to separate it from in any other case comparable 1080p IPS screens that hum alongside at a relatively pedestrian 240Hz refresh. All of them really feel swift.

In fact, esports aficionados with ninjascopic reflexes will admire the distinction. And there’s definitely no penalty to pay, given this IPS panel. It’s not such as you’re pressured to endure a dingy TN panel to have all these Hz. As for pixel response, it’s about pretty much as good as IPS screens get, although as soon as once more exhausting to essentially separate from the cheaper 240Hz brigade.

However it’s really Alienware’s different qualities that set it aside. For starters, that is the brightest and punchiest of the 25-inch bunch. The built-in Nvidia G-Sync chip additionally makes for a noticeably smoother low-frame-rate expertise than a mere G-Sync ‘Appropriate’ or FreeSync show. Ironic, given the 360Hz refresh is the principle attraction.

The Alienware 25 additionally helps Nvidia’s Reflex Latency Analyzer, which helps you fine-tune enter lag with millimetric precision. Supplied you’ve got a suitable mouse and an Nvidia graphics card, that’s, and that you’re enjoying a sport that helps it.

Given the extremely targeted remit, our solely main reservation is that the ‘Esports’ preset within the OSD menu crushes brightness to a reasonably insupportable extent. So, the Alienware 25’s absolute best efficiency comes at fairly a value, each actually and figuratively.

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Acer Predator XB273K high refresh rate gaming monitor

(Picture credit score: Acer)

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Acer Predator XB273K high refresh rate gaming monitor

(Picture credit score: Acer)

5. Acer Predator XB273K

The very best excessive refresh fee 4K is actually gonna price ya

Specs

Display measurement: 27-inch

Panel sort: IPS

Side ratio: 16:9

Native decision: 3840 x 2160

Response time: 1ms (GtG)

Refresh fee: 144Hz

Brightness: 400cd/m2

Extras: Nvidia G-Sync Appropriate, DisplayHDR 400

Causes to purchase

+Beautiful 4K IPS picture high quality+Good response and latency+Fundamental HDR help

Causes to keep away from

Requires severe GPU horsepower

By no means thoughts a brand new era of GPUs you’ll be able to’t purchase, and consoles briefly provide; 4 Okay stays a problematic decision for gaming. It’s simply sooo many pixels. Over eight million, in truth. Even at a mere 60Hz, that’s 500 million pixels that must be rendered, rasterized, ray-traced—no matter—each second.

That works out at over a billion per second at 144Hz, which simply so occurs to be the refresh fee of the Acer Predator XB273K, Acer’s extra reasonably priced 4K gaming panel. In comparison with the pricier Acer Predator X27, it lacks native dimming, delivers decrease peak brightness, and is merely G-Sync ‘Appropriate’. So, there’s no Nvidia G-Sync module onboard.

In fact, affordability is relative, and the XB273K remains to be a fairly dear panel. Certainly, with 120Hz 4K OLED TVs accessible for not all that rather more than this 27-inch monitor, the worth proposition isn’t precisely compelling.

None of which is to say this display lacks enchantment. No, siree. When you’ve seen Cyberpunk 2077 working in full IPS-plus-4K glory, you received’t need to return to 1440p, not to mention crummy previous 1080p. The issue is the philosophical incompatibility between maximizing picture high quality and body charges on the similar time. You may’t actually have each. Not even with, say, an Nvidia GeForce RTX 3080

In different phrases, whereas this monitor is able to 144Hz, you’re not going to get close to these sorts of body charges within the prettiest video games. And in case you’re not bothered about prettiness, you in all probability don’t want 4K in case you comply with. It’s a really good display, this Acer Predator XB273K, and higher worth than its Acer Predator X27 sibling, however it nonetheless doesn’t make a lot sense for this sort of cash.

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Viewsonic VX2718 high refresh rate gaming monitor

(Picture credit score: Viewsonic)

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Viewsonic VX2718 high refresh rate gaming monitor

(Picture credit score: Viewsonic)

6. Viewsonic VX2718-2KPC-MHD

Viewsonic’s price range 165Hz 1440p panel cuts a number of too many corners

Specs

Display measurement: 27-inch

Panel sort: VA

Side ratio: 16:9

Native decision: 2560 x 1440

Response time: 1ms (MPRT)

Refresh fee: 165Hz

Brightness: 250cd/m2

Extras: AMD FreeSync

Causes to purchase

+Enticing value for a 165Hz 1440p panel+Good steadiness between body fee and pixel depend+Good distinction from VA panel

Causes to keep away from

Low brightnessVA is not as much as par with IPS

VA panel expertise is used to spell sure doom in the case of pixel response. Extra lately, Samsung, amongst others, has confirmed that VA actually can ship. If not fairly an IPS-matching response, then definitely adequate efficiency for all however probably the most demanding esports players.

Sadly, the Viewsonic VX2718-2KPC-MHD is a VA display barely out of the old-fashioned, regardless of delivering a 165Hz refresh. Crank this 27-inch, 1440p curved monitor over for the primary time, and it doesn’t bode nicely. The truth is, the VX2718-2KPC-MHD is a little bit of a blurry mess. It does enhance with a little bit time and temperature. However even absolutely warmed up, it’s merely not as fast as the newest IPS panels. Or, for that matter, the implied efficiency of the 1ms MPRT response specification.

By the way, the VX2718-2KPC-MHD ‘1ms’ mode does little to enhance response, however it does crush brightness and vibrancy fairly successfully. Whereas we’re beating on Viewsonic’s newest, we be aware it lacks a refresh fee counter. It’s a small element, however it’s additionally a useful characteristic to make sure that you’re working on the proper refresh fee and make sure that adaptive sync is enabled.

Elsewhere, the stand feels a bit low cost and solely provides tilt adjustment, whereas the exterior PSU provides to litter. In the meantime, because the 250cd/m2 brightness ranking implies, this display received’t precisely sear your retinas.

This isn’t to suggest this display has nothing to supply. The 1440p native decision on a 27-inch panel is a candy combo for balancing body charges with in-game element, whereas the VA panel tech delivers loads of distinction. In fact, as 1440p 165Hz screens go, it’s competitively priced, however the mediocre response and lack of punch would possibly really feel a bit too price range for many.

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Lenovo Legion Y25-25 high refresh rate gaming monitor

(Picture credit score: Lenovo)

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Lenovo Legion Y25-25 high refresh rate gaming monitor

(Picture credit score: Lenovo)

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Lenovo Legion Y25-25 high refresh rate gaming monitor

(Picture credit score: Lenovo)

7. Lenovo Legion Y25-25

When specs don’t inform the entire story…

Specs

Display measurement: 25-inch

Panel sort: IPS

Side ratio: 16:9

Native decision: 1920 x 1080

Response time: 1ms (GtG)

Refresh fee: 240Hz

Brightness: 400cd/m2

Extras: Nvidia G-Sync Appropriate, DisplayHDR 400

Causes to purchase

+Very fast IPS panel+Loads of Hz+Good characteristic set

Causes to keep away from

Picture high quality is not as much as normal

On paper, the Lenovo Legion Y25-25 is an absolute useless ringer for the Acer Predator XB253QGX. It’s a fairly shut cousin of Alienware’s up to date 360Hz 25-incher, too. However it simply goes to indicate the specs don’t inform the entire story as a result of that is clearly the bum of the 25-inch bunch.

That’s to not say the Lenovo Legion Y25-25 is an outright dud. Not with a 25-inch IPS panel that fires at absolutely 240Hz. Positive, it’s solely 1080p. However then so is the competitors and the purpose right here is most fluidity, minimal latency. Giving up the visible element and precision of 1440p or 4K goes with the territory, in different phrases.

The Lenovo additionally has fairly candy construct high quality with a lush alloy stand, full adjustability together with top, tilt, rotate and swivel, plus styling that little bit slicker and extra grown-up than your common, moderately adolescent, gaming peripheral. The built-in, moderately than exterior, energy provide likewise soothes our collective OCD, and G-Sync compatibility is welcome if anticipated on this class of display.

To all that, you’ll be able to add wonderful pixel response with the overdrive set to medium (max it out and a few ghouls and ghosts flip up uninvited), predictably minimal latency, plus buttery easy rendering, as you’d count on for a 240Hz panel.

So what, precisely, is the issue? Fundamental picture high quality, that’s what. The Lenovo Legion Y25-25 is just a bit bit dingier, a little bit duller than the competitors. It’s unclear if it makes use of a special panel from the Acer and Alienware. However for certain, its colours are much less vibrant, and video games look much less immersive. In isolation, and given the esports remit, that argument doesn’t matter. This definitely isn’t a terrible-looking display, however when you’ll be able to have all of Lenovo’s upsides, plus higher fundamental picture high quality, elsewhere it’s a little bit of a non-starter of a monitor.

Illustrative differences between 60Hz and 170Hz refresh rates in gaming monitors

(Picture credit score: AOC)

Excessive refresh fee gaming monitor FAQ

What’s the perfect PC monitor panel sort for gaming?

If unsure, go IPS. There at the moment are VA screens with good response pace, just like the fabulous MSI MPG ARTYMIS 343CQR. However IPS extra constantly delivers the products and is now sufficiently quick when it comes to refresh fee that you simply completely needn’t accept TN anymore.

What number of Hz do you really want for PC gaming?

Should you’re asking the query, the reply is: 144Hz might be loads. Esports fiends who will actually admire increased refresh charges already know who they’re and what they need. And that reply is probably going getting on for 240Hz lately.

What’s the perfect decision for a gaming monitor?

With the newest unobtainable graphics playing cards, 4K gaming at excessive triple-digit refresh charges is a stretch in probably the most demanding video games. So, 1440p (at both 16:9 or 21:9 facet ratio) might be the higher compromise. 1080p is barely of curiosity to those that demand the very highest body charges for shooters.

Ought to I purchase a curved gaming monitor?

For our cash, curved panels take advantage of sense in bigger codecs and with super-wide 21:9 or wider panels. A curved panel on, say, a smaller 27-inch 16:9 panel is not essentially a foul factor. However, nor does it actually add a lot to the expertise. 

Does HDR matter for PC gaming screens?

The issue with HDR on this context is that few LCD screens provide a real HDR expertise. What’s extra, screens with HDR-boosting native dimming stay painfully dear and for what is actually solely marginal profit. That stated, HDR certification normally ensures excessive brightness, and HDR 600 and past requires huge coloration help.

G-Sync or FreeSync: which adaptive display tech is greatest?

We expect screens with Nvidia’s G-Sync module built-in have the sting in the case of easy efficiency at decrease body charges. At increased body charges, mere G-Sync compatibility is ok, and AMD’s FreeSync is likewise a lot of a muchness.