Whether you’re a battle-hardened gamer in dire need of an upgrade, or a PC gaming newbie set on building your very first rig, you should always be wary when it comes to picking out the best components for your machine. Even the most powerful hardware becomes useless without a proper output through which it can flex its high-performance muscles, bringing us to arguably the most important piece of any PC building puzzle – the monitor.
With the rise of a brand new generation of supercharged graphics cards and cutting-edge CPUs, the monitors had to follow suit in order to keep up with that much extra power, and what better way to do that than by amping up the hertz? Over the years, the 144Hz monitors kept improving and becoming more affordable to the masses, eventually leading to them becoming a standard among competitive and casual gamers alike.
With so many options out there today, singling out the best 144Hz gaming monitor might seem daunting, but fear not young padawan! Your trusty Game Gavel pals have been keeping busy combing the market and carefully hand-picking a few selected models for you to take into consideration.
The following is a list of highest-quality gaming screens (144Hz) sorted based on their specifications, prices, and overall gaming performance. Without further ado, let us commence!
Best Choice: Asus ROG Swift PG279QZ
Pros & Cons
- Ergonomic design
- Impressive viewing angles
- Accurate and vibrant images
- Black colors become grayish in dark rooms
- The display might need calibrating
- Excessive IPS glow may occur
- Resolution: 2560 x 1440p
- Screen Size: 27-inches
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Response Time: 4ms
- Connection Ports: 1x DisplayPort 1.2, 1x HDMI, 2x USB 3.0
- Weight: 15.5 lbs
- Dimensions: 24.5 x 9.4 x 21.8 -inches
- Thin bezels
- ASUS Eye Care technology
- IPS panel
- NVIDIA G-SYNC & ULMB technology
Asus ROG Swift PG279QZ Review
Riding on the success of its predecessor, the PG279Q, the PG279QZ offers an array of slight improvements that add up to an overall superior experience making it the best 144hz gaming monitor on the market.
Design-wise, the PG279QZ manages to satisfy both ends of the user spectrum by providing a stylish and simplistic frontal look, sprinkled with a few angular details in the back that we’ve grown to expect from the gaming monitors of today. At first glance, it could easily pass for an office display, meaning you won’t find it sticking out of its environment too much.
Its ergonomic versatility allows for easy positioning via swiveling, rotating, tilting, and adjusting its height to your delight. Be mindful of the monitor’s placement, though, as the LED-embezzled stand shows signs of wobbliness and can get knocked over easily by unmindful passersby.
Now let’s get to the meat of the monitor – gaming performance. Luckily, the PG279QZ passes with flying colors on this front, fully justifying the ROG logo it so proudly boasts. Screen tearing is a thing of the past thanks to the implemented NVIDIA G-SYNC technology, further reinforced by the ULMB (Ultra Low Motion Blur) technology which eliminates any traces of ghosting whatsoever.
The PG279QZ can easily punch above its weight given its striking 4ms response time, an impressive PPI (pixel-per-inch) ratio of 109, the ability to overclock the monitor to an impressive 165Hz, and near-perfect color consistency. ‘’Why near perfect?’’, you might ask.
The minute smear on an almost impeccable result lies in an issue common among IPS displays: namely, the IPS glow and backlight bleeding can occur, causing darker colors to turn into a more obscure shade of gray. Truth be told, this problem is only prevalent among users playing in dark rooms, which was never a healthy habit, to begin with (listen to your doctors, my friends!).
And besides, it does make a difference when spotting enemies hiding in dark corners in CS: GO, so it’s a win-win, am I right?
All jokes aside, if you’re able to get over the issues mentioned above, along with the lack of HDR and the requirement of some tinkering around the easily navigable display options menu, you’re looking at a $600 display that will more than meet your high-octane gaming needs.
Premium Pick: Asus ROG Swift PG27UQ
Pros & Cons
- Admirable image quality and color gamut
- Low response time
- Top-notch build quality
- Ergonomic design
- Very hardware demanding
- Resolution: 3840 x 2160p
- Screen Size: 27-inches
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Response Time: 4ms
- Connection Ports: 1 x Earphone Jack , 1 x HDMI 2.0, 2 x USB 3.0, 1 x DisplayPort 1.4
- Weight: 20.3 lbs
- Dimensions: 25 x 37 x 15 -inches
- Aura Sync ambient lighting
- 384-zone direct LED backlight
- Quantum-dot IPS panel
Asus ROG Swift PG27UQ Review
Though the aforementioned PG279QZ is a class act among its peers, it simply pales in comparison to this 4K 144Hz HDR G-Sync behemoth which is leagues above anything else on the market today.
Upon taking a first look at the PG27UQ, you’ll immediately know that his bad boy means business. Its (somewhat too) flashy and striking ergonomic design features two red LED projectors proudly displaying the ROG logo, anti-glare coated matte black bezels, a fairly sturdy stand, and an integrated fan which silently keeps the monitor ice-cold during marathon gaming sessions.
The picture quality more than justifies its intimidating appearance, as you’re highly unlikely to find anything that comes close to the PG27UQ in terms of overall performance. Whether you intend on using it solely for gaming purposes or throwing a little office work into the mix, the wide DCI-P3 color gamut paired with a low blue light filter emits a beautiful image without putting excessive strain on your eyes, regardless of the activities you partake in.
In regards to gaming, there’s no contest. The 27’’ PG27UQ packs quite a visual punch with its 4K Ultra HD resolution, resulting in an impressive 163 PPI ratio. Backlight bleeding is a thing of the past thanks to full-array local dimming and impeccable brightness from any angle up to 178 degrees. Aside from being a visual spectacle, this 144Hz IPS display runs like a charm combined with a solid NVIDIA GPU by dint of the tried-and-true G-SYNC technology, signifying the end of any traces of ghosting, screen tearing, stuttering, or motion blur.
The PG27UQ comes packed with Asus Game Visual and GamePlus features designed to cater to your needs, allowing you access to standard picture presets, as well as various on-screen timers, crosshair-like overlays, and similar gaming aids. All of the features mentioned above make for a dazzling gaming experience, and the positives far outweigh the drawbacks.
It doesn’t mean there aren’t any drawbacks to speak of, though!
As positive and awe-inspiring as this review has been so far, I’m a nitpicker at heart, and the time has come to pick the metaphorical nits of this seemingly godlike display. With its price range starting from $2000, it only seems fair and justifiable to do so.
The biggest issue bringing the PG27UQ down is its mind-boggling price stated above. For the price of a solid gaming rig, you’ll get an equally mind-boggling 4K monitor whose capabilities remain out of reach for most machines out there.
If your rig isn’t the creme of the crop IT equivalent to a Ferrari sporting a 1080 Ti card at the very least, then kiss your precious little frame rates goodbye. But then again, this elite monitor was never aiming for the casual market to start with, so all is forgiven.
Other nitpicks include the lack of NVIDIA ULMB (though unnecessary due to no motion blur or ghosting whatsoever) and the occasional local dimming issues regarding light colors bleeding over into dimly lit zones.
Looking at it as a whole, these problems barely leave a chink in the armor of this absolute beast of a monitor, whose reign is currently only challenged by one of the best 4K monitors out there, the Acer Predator X27. Still, due to the X27’s lack of pivot adjustment compared to the PG27UQ, our vote goes to the latter.
For half-a-price you’d still be able to afford the Acer XB273K listed among our favorite 27-inch gaming monitors, if you’d be willing to part from the local dimming system, that is. However, if you’ve got the inheritance-from-a-distant-rich-relative kind of money, then look no further. The PG27UQ serves as a mere peek into what the gaming world of tomorrow holds in store for us…
Best Value: Dell S2719DGF
Pros & Cons
- Great build quality and sharp image
- Support for both G-SYNC and FreeSync
- Surprisingly accurate colors
- Lack of backlight strobing and gamma adjustment
- No HDR
- Resolution: 2560 x 1440p
- Screen Size: 27-inches
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Response Time: 1ms
- Connection Ports: 1x DisplayPort 1.2, 1.HDMI 2.0, 1x HDMI 1.4, 1x Headphone Jack, 1x USB upstream, 2x USB downstream, 1x USB BC1.2 charging port
- Weight: 20.35 lbs
- Dimensions: 24.1 x 7.05 x 20.9 -inches
- 350 cd/m2 brightness
- 144-155Hz refresh rate
- QHD resolution
Dell S2719DGF Review
Going down the price range by more than 1000$, one would expect a drop in quality of epic proportions. Well, we’re happy to say that Dell’s S2719DGF far surpasses our expectations in terms of getting the most bang for your buck!
Though its unembellished and monotonous look features nothing resembling its gaming peers, appearances can be oh so deceiving. The S2719DGF’s design is all about functionality: three 6mm thin bezels and one 14mm bottom bezel blend in with the display quite nicely thanks to a flush-mounted anti-glare layer applied across the monitor’s edges.
Its robust stand shows almost no signs of wobbling, while the monitor itself offers a wide variety of options in terms of ergonomics. You can tilt, swivel, pivot, or elevate the display to your liking, which eliminates any potential issues regarding narrow and shoddy viewing angles, not to mention helping you keep your back straight and ache-free for hours on end.
Its image quality is pleasantly surprising, especially for a TN panel known for sacrificing eye candy for performance. Though not as vibrant as is the case with IPS and VA panels, the colors remain rich, vivid, and accurate.
An impressive contrast ratio of 1000:1, a fast 1ms response time, and true 8-bit color depth warrant a more-than-decent visual experience in 1440p. An easily accessible display menu allows for endless screen calibration options, which may be necessary should its out-of-the-box picture quality fail to impress you.
Once you start a game, all of these nitpicks simply fade away into nothingness. A native 144Hz refresh rate (overclockable to 155Hz) and low input lag are backed up by both NVIDIA’S G-SYNC and AMD’s FreeSync technologies simultaneously, leaving no room for screen tearing, ghosting, or trailing, regardless of your preferred brand of GPUs.
Sure, the shadows may appear slightly more grayish compared to color-wise superior IPS or VA displays, but it’s a barely noticeable issue that doesn’t affect your game in the slightest.
It does help out when dealing with campers in CS: GO, to be frank!
With all that being said, is S2719DGF one the best monitors out there? Not really. Its lack of HDR support and lower contrast ratio are what keep this display from being among the elites. Is it the best in its price range? You bet! For almost half the price of an average 144Hz 1440p monitor, there’s really not too much room for complaints. It packs a punch strong enough to keep you competitive in pretty much any multiplayer game on the market.
Now fire up Fortnite and go show those 10-year-olds how it’s done!
Best Ultrawide: LG 34GK950F-B
Pros & Cons
- Vibrant and saturated colors
- Solid viewing angles
- Almost complete lack of ghosting or blurring
- Requires a fast PC
- Lack of ergonomics
- Resolution: 3440 x 1440p
- Screen Size: 34-inches
- Aspect Ratio: 21:9
- Response Time: 5ms (1ms with Motion Blur Reduction)
- Connection Ports: 2x HDMI, 1x DisplayPort, 2x USB 3.0, 1x Headphones jack
- Weight: 16.1 lbs
- Dimensions: 32.3 x 11.3 x 18.2 -inches
- Radeon FreeSync 2 & NVIDIA’S G-SYNC
- Curved Nano IPS display
- WQHD resolution
LG 34GK950F-B Review
Up until recently, the idea of combining the silky smooth 144Hz refresh rates with the gigantic and highly demanding widescreen monitors seemed like sheer lunacy.
Well, call me crazy!
The magicians at LG managed to push the boundaries of modern gaming even further by releasing the 3.0.1 firmware, thereby extending the refresh rate limit all the way to 144Hz and lowering the response time by whopping 10s (!), while also adding support for NVIDIA’S G-SYNC technology. This all seems rather spectacular in theory, but how does all that power work in practice? In short: it works marvelously!
The 34GK950F-B is one of the more imposing monitors on the market today, owing to it its massive width, 1900R curvature, and a menacing color combination of matte black and jet red to hammer the point home. Surprisingly enough, it weighs only around 15 lbs thanks to its predominantly plastic build, which is a welcome bonus. Though the bezels can be considered moderately thin at best, the sheer size of the screen more than makes up for it, offering nigh-perfect visibility at all times.
Its surprisingly thin stand, however, does leave a lot to be desired when it comes to sturdiness, ergonomics, and suppressing wobble, and we wouldn’t have minded sacrificing aesthetics for more functionality in this department. Its decently adjustable height and tilt range partially make up for its lack of a satisfactory swivel range, which, quite frankly, is to be expected due to the sheer size of the display.
On the gaming side of things, the 34GK950F-B excels in virtually every step of the way. This slightly curved ultrawide 21:9 1440p monitor delivers great pixel density at a whopping 109.68 PPI, which paired up with 144Hz makes it especially mouth-watering for fans of racing games and flight simulators. Highly saturated and vibrant colors contribute to the overall immersion, along with 178-degree viewing angles and 1ms Motion Blur Reduction technology which reduces blurring to a barely visible problem when frame rates reach three digits.
The IPS panel does come with its usual downside: backlight bleeding. It’s nothing too noteworthy, and quite understandable for a monitor of such proportions, occurring only when playing in a dark or dimly lit room with the brightness turned all the way up. On the other hand, the lack of local dimming may disappoint anyone looking to enjoy HDR in its best light, as the contrast ratio doesn’t quite hit that sweet spot.
When all is said and done, and considering the fact that we’re talking about one of the first ultrawide 144Hz monitors on our market, the 34GK950F-B is highly recommended to anyone eager to widen (get it?) their gaming horizons. The $1000 price tag seems fair for a high-profile display of these proportions, serving as a mere peek through the keyhole into what is yet to come.
Best Cheap Pick: AOC C24G1
Pros & Cons
- Very affordable
- Excellent color accuracy and color depth
- Barely any blurring or ghosting
- No USB ports
- Limited use of MBRT
- Inferior viewing angles
- Resolution: 1920 x 1080p
- Screen Size: 24-inches
- Aspect Ratio: 21:9
- Response Time: 1ms
- Connection Ports: 1x DisplayPort, 2x HDMI 1.4,1 x DVI, 1x Audio in/out
- Weight: 9.82 lbs
- Dimensions: 21.14 x 9.64 x 20.19 -inches
- AMD FreeSync
- Curved VA panel
- 1ms MBRT
- 93 PPI
AOC C24G1 Review
Building a decent gaming PC is not an activity to partake in without a decently thick wallet.
Maybe you’ve been too busy making sure that your hardware is up to par that you forgot to add the purchase of a solid gaming monitor into the equation, leaving your budget fairly drained. Perhaps you were tight on funds from the start and are in search of a display that will deliver the best 144Hz gaming performance possible without breaking too many piggy banks.
Whatever the reason, there’s no shame in looking to get the most bounce to the ounce. Thankfully, our hard-working friends at AOC have heard our pleas for help, and have gifted us with a remarkably cheap, yet surprisingly splendid display capable of outperforming some of its higher-priced competitors on the market. Behold, the C24G1!
Right off the bat, the C24G1 comes off as a sensible monitor designed to merely hint at its gaming pedigree, which blends into almost any type of interior without too much intrusion. The thin top and side bezels amplify the already high immersion factor, perfectly paired with its curved VA panel featuring true 8-bit color depth and a 3006:1 contrast ratio.
The C24G1 offers a stunning 98.8% sRGB color accuracy straight out of the box, requiring no further color calibration. Truth be told, its peak brightness of around 250cd/m2 brings the experience down by a few notches, but it only becomes noticeable when playing under direct sunlight.
Curtains to the rescue!
Thanks to its low-demanding resolution of 1080p and a relatively low 24-inch diagonal, the pixel density reaches a solid number of 93 PPI. Without too much strain on your hardware, you’ll get a crisp and detailed display in the highest of frame rates, making the C24G1 an ideal choice for those intense online multiplayer clashes requiring fast reflexes and quick wit.
The ergonomics are stellar, featuring a stand with lots of flexibility regarding swivel, tilt, and height adjustment. This covers up any potential problems regarding viewing angles, which are not very awe-inspiring, to say the least. Once you adjust the monitor’s position to your liking, you’ll be able to enjoy silky-smooth gameplay, courtesy of a response time of 4ms, and 1ms when MBRT (Motion Blur Reduction Technology) is engaged.
Though it saddens me to do this due to its insanely low price of around $150-180, the issues plaguing the C24G1 have to be addressed, no matter their severity. Firstly, its aching lack of USB ports sticks out like a sore thumb compared to most of its competitors on the market.
Secondly, the inability to run FreeSync and MBRT simultaneously was a rather saddening realization, especially combined with the fact that MBRT reduces the screen’s maximum brightness by a significant amount, making it unusable in over illuminated rooms.
*queue vampire hissing sounds*
Keep in mind that all of the faults mentioned above pale when viewed through its low-price prism. When it comes to low-budget monitors, the C24G1 is a cut above the rest in every way.
Compromises had to be made in order to keep the price as low as possible, but they weren’t grave enough to diminish our genuine recommendation. Top stuff!
Monitors for Gaming: Buying Guide
Depending on how much time you’ve spent thoroughly scanning the options available, your monitor of choice can either enhance or detract from your gaming machine, consequently dictating the levels of immersion, performance, and overall enjoyment.
In order to prevent you from throwing your hard-earned funds away on a case of ‘’all show and no go’’, we’ve composed a compact guide on what traits you should keep an eye on before hastily left-clicking the alluring ‘’Buy Now’’ button, in no particular order.
Panel Types: What’s the Difference?
There are four different types of panels available on the market today: IPS (in-plane switching), TN (twisted nematic), OLED (organic light-emitting diode), and VA (vertical alignment). Each type comes with its own set of merits and demerits that determine what purpose the monitors will serve primarily.
Most gamers will tell you that they prefer gaming on IPS panels due to their remarkable viewing angles, great response time, optimal refresh rates, and solid contrast ratios. VA panels offer slightly inferior viewing angles and color reproduction compared to their IPS counterparts, but overshadow them in terms of higher contrast ratios, allowing for better reproduction of various levels of black. As it stands, the increasing affordability of IPS panels makes the VA panel monitors obsolete and outmoded.
TN panels, on the other hand, have been considered the best choice for image editing by dint of their blazing-fast 1ms response time, 240Hz refresh rates, but not as ideal for gaming due to their lack of color accuracy and HDR support.
The only panel type which has the potential of dethroning the IPS panels is the frighteningly expensive OLED panel. Though still considered newbies on the market, the OLED panels are making waves as we speak by virtue of their superior viewing angles, wider color gamuts, more efficient power consumption, and lighter weight. Will they succeed? Only time will tell…
In the meantime, check out our more thorough analysis of the three-way clash between the predominant panel types: IPS vs TN vs VA
Connection Ports: Let’s Hook Up!
Of what use is an impressive 4K 240Hz 50-inch monitor if you have no means of plugging it in? There are four different types of connection ports in use: HDMI (High-Definition Multimedia Interface), DVI (Digital Visual Interface), DP (DisplayPort), and VGA (Visual Graphics Array).
HDMI represents a standard among modern PC monitors and HDTV screens, the huge advantage of which being the ability to carry audio over to the display – plug and play! Better HDMI versions mean higher refresh rates and higher resolutions. HDMI 2.0 supports up to 4K resolutions at 60 fps, while all versions are DVI backward compatible.
Speaking of DVI, this type of connection is a dinosaur among connection ports, waiting for the DP meteor strike to finally put it out of its misery. Though supported by most graphics cards of today, its lack of 4K support has put an end to its technological ventures. Still, if you don’t mind gaming at 1080p, DVI supports up to 144Hz, so there’s still fun to be had with this old geezer.
DisplayPort is the way of the future, capable of running three 4K displays at 144Hz simultaneously, which practically makes it the only option if you plan on making a fully immersive racing/flying sim cabin.
If DVI is considered the dinosaur among its peers, then VGA is based compared to an amoeba and is only to be seen on older laptops, TVs, and monitors. Stick with HDMI or DP, and stay far away from VGA. Next!
Screen Size, Resolution, And Aspect Ratio: The Bigger – The Better, Right?
While this topic is thoroughly explained in our screen size and aspect ratio guides respectively, we’ll try and keep it as short as possible by answering: not necessarily. You see, a monitor’s resolution must compliment its screen size in order to avoid compromising the picture quality.
For example, a 27-inch monitor sporting a 1024×768 resolution would produce a murky, stretched-out image, while a 23-inch monitor will struggle to produce anything above 1080p as there wouldn’t be enough screen real estate to fit, therefore displaying a mere portion of the desktop.
So, how do you separate the wheat from the chaff? Two words: pixel density. Pixel density represents the resolution/size ratio in PPI (pixels-per-inch) and is the number to go by when choosing an ideal monitor. The ideal PPI varies depending on your screen size, resolution, and aspect ratio, as is evident in the table below:
|SCREEN SIZE||RESOLUTION||PPI||Aspect Ratio|
|23-inch to 25-inches||1920 x 1080p||88.12 - 95.78||16:9|
|27-inches||1920 x 1440p - 4K (3840 x 1080p - 4096 x 3072p)||88.89 - 189.63||4:3|
|28-inches||4K (3840 x 1080p - 4096 x 3072p)||142.46 -182.86||32:9|
|25-inches to 29-inches (ultrawide)||2560x1080p||95.81 - 111.14||21:9|
Refresh Rate: Keep It Fresh!
The higher – the better. That’s pretty much it, really. Refresh rates represent the number of times your monitor updates its display per second. Lower refresh rates equal lower hardware requirements, while higher refresh rates require a faster machine in order to keep up with the monitor’s capabilities.
The dilemma between the most common refresh rates available today is thoroughly explained in our 60Hz vs. 120Hz vs. 144Hz guide, but to put it bluntly, if you consider being competitive in modern multiplayer shooters such as Fortnite or CS: GO, anything above 120Hz goes. The jump from 60 to 120Hz is a once-in-a-lifetime experience that will broaden your gaming horizons like nothing before, and it’s more than worth the investment if you’ve got the machine to handle it.
G-SYNC & FreeSync: What’s The Difference?
Developed by NVIDIA & AMD respectively, G-SYNC & FreeSync represent two sides of the same coin: Adaptive Sync. Adaptive Sync works its magic by syncing the frame rate output from your GPU to your display, thereby minimizing screen tearing.
Though seemingly identical, G-SYNC takes the cake by being capable of running at 144Hz in 4K, while FreeSync’s reach stops at 120Hz in 4K. This, coupled with G-SYNC’s wider dynamic range of refresh rates should surely give enough headaches to AMD’s PR team!
More on that in our FreeSync analysis!
Frequently Asked Questions
You’ve got questions? We’re here to answer! Here are some of the most often occurring ones:
What Is the Best Monitor Brand?
While a clear winner hasn’t yet emerged – and we hope he never will – a few brands have distinguished themselves on account of their quality, reliability, and overall performance. LG, Dell, Asus, and Acer as of recently made sure to stand out from the rest, and their sales figures further reinforce our assessment.
Is a 144Hz Monitor Good for Console Gaming?
Console gaming and 144Hz sounds like a great pair, if only it weren’t for the fact that consoles, in general, don’t support any refresh rates higher than 60Hz, meaning that anything above that specific refresh rate can be considered overkill.
Still, there’s so much more to consider when purchasing a console gaming monitor, and we’ve been diligent enough to compile lists for the best console gaming monitor and the best PS4 monitor waiting for you to give them a look-see.
Is a Curved Monitor Better for Gaming?
That depends solely on your personal preference. While some might find the curved monitor more immersive and neat-looking, others would prefer sticking with the good old flat screen. Take a look at some of our favorite curved monitors, and you might just stumble upon the right one for you.
We’ve reached the end of our long and arduous search for that perfect 144Hz monitor that packs just enough punch to fulfill your gaming needs. Though we took care to include only the best choices, perhaps we made a lapse in judgment and missed out on some of your favorite picks. With that in mind, feel free to contribute to this list in a civil manner down in the comments below!
Don’t think we’ve made enough monitor-related puns? Ouch, that hertz…
- ASUS ROG SWIFT PG279QZ, ASUS Support
- Adam Simmons, Monitors for Console Gaming, PC Monitors, June 22nd, 2018