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Is your old, big computer screen no longer enough for you? Or is your laptop screen too small for your enjoyment? Either way, there are many benefits to switching to a bigger, better monitor, whether you’re working, designing, coding or, in your case, playing.
There is a wide range of gaming monitors available, all promising exceptional performance and a comfortable, immersive visual experience. So the key is to choose the monitor that’s right for you, whether it’s a 144Hz, 1440p, 4K or ultra widescreen gaming monitor. But what if you’re working with a limited budget?
Well, don’t worry. In this article, we’ll help you find the best gaming monitor for under $300. We’ve gone through the market and selected the most promising options that offer you the best value for money.
Our favorite gaming monitors for $300 or less
After hours of research and testing on dozens of gaming monitors to see how they perform in PC and console games, we’ve managed to come up with a definitive list of the best gaming monitors for 2021.
Each of the monitors you’ll soon see guarantees crisp, clear images, uncompromising input controls and refresh rates, intuitive and easy navigation, long life thanks to robust construction, and endless playtime.
Ready? Let’s get started.
AOC CQ27G2 27″ Super Curved Frameless Game Monitor
Our first choice for the best gaming monitor is the 27″ AOC CQ27G2 frameless gaming monitor, which promises (and delivers) an incredibly responsive and immersive gaming experience thanks to a high-contrast curved VA panel that delivers realistic colors and rich blacks. By the way, it’s also the best 1440p 144hz monitor for under $300 you can find today.
It is a rare and precious stone, especially in this price range. You also get an exceptionally well-designed screen with an ergonomic stand that is compatible with VESA mounts. Other interesting features include custom crosshairs, the ability to adjust the gamma curve with Shadow Control, pre-calibrated photo presets, saturation presets and MBRs.
One of the minor issues with this monitor, however, is its relatively low responsiveness, meaning that with a mostly black image, you may notice some slowdown on fast-moving objects, especially in high-speed games. But that shouldn’t be a breaking point, especially considering the other features and the quality of the image you get.
- 1440p resolution with wide color gamut
- Impressive pixel density and contrast
- MBR and AMD FreeSync up to 144Hz
- Ergonomic design with curved edge
- Excellent price-quality ratio
Philips 278E1A 27″ frameless monitor
If you’re looking for the biggest, widest and best in refresh rate, check out the Sceptre Ultra-Wide Curved Gaming Monitor 30. With an ultra-wide, slim 30-inch screen and 2560 x 1080 pixel Full HD resolution, this device from Sceptre is by far one of the best 1080p gaming monitors on the market.
The best part is the excellent 200 Hz refresh rate and high contrast ratio. This makes for really impressive gameplay, but if your favorite game won’t play, you can lower the refresh rate to 144Hz to get realistic pixel-level response times and not cause bottlenecks. Whether it’s 200 or 144, you have good eyesight.
You’ll also appreciate the pre-calibrated photo presets, vivid light/dark relationships, extra deep blacks, AMD FreeSynch support, stable G-sync performance, 3000:1 static contrast ratio, 48-200 Hz DisplayPort range and 90% sRGB color gamut. Even if these glasses don’t make you shine, you’ll still appreciate the immersive visuals, so it’s a win for us.
- An immersive game with a curved screen
- High resolution and contrast
- Soft movements and tear-free play.
- Incredibly detailed images with a refresh rate of 200 Hz
- Instant sound with built-in speakers
Acer Nitro VG271 Pbmiipx 27″ Full HD IPS Monitor
If a 30-inch screen is preferable for your workspace, narrow it down a bit with a 27-inch game screen. Manufactured by one of the world’s leading brands of laptops and monitors, this visual machine manages to be affordable while offering truly outstanding and elite specifications and features.
It is popular with gamers for its attractive, frameless and stylish screen design and comes with a sturdy stand. It also features a 144Hz refresh rate IPS panel with 1080p resolution, which is rare at this price point, both individually and in general.
Acer Nitro’s graphics are not the sharpest, but the bright colors and vivid images more than make up for this shortcoming. For gaming, 99% sRGB is enough, and thanks to the IPS panel you get a stable image without color shift at any viewing angle. In short, it’s an excellent game instructor at an even better price.
- Excellent viewing angles with the IPS panel
- Clear and vivid visualizations for airports
- FreeSync compatibility, VESA certification
- The best value for money
BenQ MOBIUZ EX2510 24.5-inch gaming monitor
The next monitor is our smallest, but what the 24.5-inch BenQ MOBIUZ EX2510 gaming monitor lacks in screen size, it certainly makes up for in terms of features and performance. We’re talking wide viewing angles, bright colors, IPS technology, etc.
A 178-degree viewing angle in both horizontal and vertical directions provides an immersive viewing experience, and images are guaranteed to be stunning with consistent and accurate color reproduction. And thanks to the speed of the IPS panel, there’s no risk of ghosting or motion blur, even when playing fast-paced PC games.
But here’s the problem: This is a 1080p monitor with a refresh rate of 144 Hz, so it’s not the best in these categories. However, the BenQ MOBIUZ is ideal for those who don’t have a particularly powerful PC setup and can’t run games smoothly at 144Hz at higher resolutions.
- Accurate colours and immersive vision
- Minimal input delay and fast reaction time
- MBR and FreeSync up to 144Hz
- Ergonomic design, robust construction
Asus VP28UQG 28″ 4K/UHD Monitor
Finally, another Asus option is the Asus VP28UQG 28″ 4K/UHD monitor, which promises an incredibly immersive gaming experience with photorealistic images that rival those of its top competitors.
The large 28-inch screen offers a very high 4K (3840×2160) resolution, which most gamers can only dream of. The stunning graphics achievable at this resolution are further enhanced by Adaptive Sync, which provides fast, smooth and visually compelling visuals throughout the game session.
The icing on the cake is an abundance of connectivity options, including two HDMI 2.0 ports for Ultra HD playback and DisplayPort 1.2. Your eyes will also appreciate this economical low blue light gaming monitor that keeps the image bright, so your eyes won’t feel stressed or strained even after hours of gaming.
- Intuitive operation of the monitor
- 5-way joystick ON Activation of the OSD
- GamePlus and other features
- Different connection options
Don’t forget to protect your hands and wrists with the best gaming gloves, so you can comfortably enjoy your next marathon game all day long.
Budget game monitor Acquisition guide
The desktop computer has come a long way since its invention decades ago. One of the most important elements is of course the monitor. Today, computer monitors are available in different screen sizes, screen resolutions, construction qualities and other features.
Top of the class? Game monitors. They have ultra-high resolution and refresh rate, as well as other features like anti-agosting, adaptive sync and anti-splitting, for a smoother and faster visual experience during intense gaming.
If you want to find the best gaming monitor in 2021, here are the elements to consider:
Simply put, a computer monitor is an output device that displays data from a computer via a video or graphics adapter. However, this transfer and display process depends on the type of monitor you are using and therefore on the quality of the image you see on the screen.
Cathode ray tube (CRT)
The first monitors on the market were CRT monitors, which use electrons to display visual elements. Initially, CRT monitors could only produce black and white images before eventually moving to color. CRT monitors are rarely seen today, mainly because they are large, bulky and heavy.
Liquid crystal display (LCD)
As CRT displays have become obsolete, we have seen the explosive growth of liquid crystal displays. These are flat, thin, lightweight screens with liquid plasma and fluorescent backlighting for illumination and image display. Until now, LCD screens are still visible in many homes and offices.
Light-emitting diodes (LEDs)
An even more technologically advanced type of computer and television screen is the LED screen, which uses light emitting diodes and diffusion current to produce a bright, sharp image. Compared to LCD screens, LEDs are thinner, lighter and more energy efficient.
Organic light emitting diode (OLED)
You can also see the OLED monitors, which are by far the most advanced technology. These screens are equipped with light emitting diode layers that consist of organic components. The images you see on the screen are generated by the light produced by the specified LEDs. When the screen is turned off, a transparent screen remains, which can be flat or curved.
Finally, there are touchscreens, i.e. their surface is sensitive to touch, allowing the user to better interact with the computer and the display system. They are essentially similar to the screens on smartphones and tablets, although many laptops under $1,500 are now equipped with touch screens.
TN vs IPS vs VA
Another consideration when looking at screen types is the technology used in the display panel, also known as TN, IPS or VA. Here’s what you need to know:
An IPS panel offers better viewing angles and color reproduction than TN monitors, making it a good choice for single-player gaming, streaming movies and video editing. However, you lose out to the competition due to slower refresh rates and response times (unless you buy an expensive, high-quality IPS display). In this case, TN screens have an advantage.
At the same time, the VA panel offers a balanced combination of good response times and viewing angles, as well as true, deep blacks and excellent contrast ratios. However, many people still prefer standard IPS and TN panels with high refresh rates over VA panels, so this is something to think about.
You also need to determine the size of the screen. In general: The more the better, especially for games and when you want to enjoy beautiful images. However, this is not always the case.
So, while large screens offer a more accurate, visible and realistic display that translates into immersive gaming and an incredible overall experience, these large screens are also more expensive and naturally take up a lot of desktop space.
So if you have a tighter budget or limited space, you may have to settle for a smaller screen, but that’s not always a bad idea. Think about it: You’re no more than a meter away from the screen, so you hardly notice the details outside the center of the screen.
Resolution is more important than screen size, which ultimately determines image quality. Nowadays you have a lot of choices in resolution, from standard high-definition video screens next to your console to stunning 4K or Ultra HD screens. However, contrary to what you might think, a high-resolution screen is not always ideal, especially when it comes to games.
That’s because, while 4K displays give incredibly detailed images, you tend to reduce the frame rate, which can result in significant lag, especially in fast-paced games. Additionally, 4K monitors are quite expensive and hard to find in the $300 price range.
Consider 1080p or 1440p game monitors instead. If you have a relatively low CPU and GPU, you’ll get better and more consistent visual performance with a 1080p display, but if your gaming console can handle higher resolutions without a problem, you should invest in the best 1440p gaming monitor you can find under $300.
Pixels per inch (PPI)
There is also the issue of PPI or pixels per inch, which is determined by the combined proportions of the size and resolution of the screen. Basically, a small monitor with a higher resolution produces sharper images and smoother lines than a large monitor with a lower resolution, simply because all the pixels are closer together in a smaller space.
For example, you are considering buying a 1080p monitor. A 24-inch screen gives you a better picture than a 30-inch screen, and its higher pixel density makes it easy to see and distinguish details at a distance. It’s better for your eyes because you don’t have to squint or lean too close to the screen to see what’s going on.
Ultra-wide screen vs. widescreen
In terms of resolution, this is the display format, which is basically just a wide or ultra-wide screen. You won’t find any old 3:4 or panoramic cinema shots. But it’s okay, and here’s why:
Nowadays, widescreen formats are the most common format on games, PCs and TV screens, and most games are designed for this format. This prevents problems with display, stretching, cropping or excessive black edges.
But ultra-wide screens are also a good idea, especially if you plan to watch a lot of movies, because the 21:9 format is very similar to the original 2:39:1 format of a movie, or if you do a lot of multitasking, web browsing and other daily activities on your desktop PC, because the extra horizontal space can be used as a work surface.
We’ve already dropped the term refresh rate several times, so let’s talk about its meaning and importance. Basically, the refresh rate is the frequency at which the screen can be updated or refreshed when changes occur. This speed is measured in Hz (Hertz), i.e. the more often the screen is updated, the higher the Hz.
You may have noticed numbers like 60Hz, 144Hz or 200Hz when viewing video screens. These numbers indicate the speed or refresh rate of the monitor. The higher frame rate makes for a much smoother visual experience, rather than looking like stop-motion animation.
It’s also because the refresh rate of 144 Hz compared to, say, 60 Hz is close to what our eyes actually perceive and how we perceive real motion. This means that when you use a 144 Hz display, you get faster response times, a better visual experience, and a better overall experience. Of course, this only works if the CPU and GPU can handle such a load.
Adaptive time control
One of the most common problems that occur when the screen refresh rate, hardware capabilities and game requirements do not match is screen tearing and screen compensation. If you want to avoid this and enjoy smoother gaming, look for gaming monitors with AdaptiveSync technology.
For more information on upgrade rates, click here.
While refresh rate refers to how often the screen changes the image or the details of the image on the screen, reaction time refers to how quickly the monitor changes from one color to another, or as some say, how quickly the monitor responds to input.
Unlike refresh rates where you want higher numbers like 200 or even 240 Hz, you want to be as low as possible in terms of response time. 5 ms is largely acceptable for most visual activities like watching movies and playing games, but for competitive games you want a shorter response time, for example a higher refresh rate. B. 1 ms, reducing any perceived delay.
Now let’s talk about color reproduction, color gamut or color space, which basically refers to the ability of a sign to represent color. It is essentially a wider range of colors, or a higher percentage of the color space, resulting in better quality, brighter, more accurate and more realistic colors.
You will see that color space support is indicated as a percentage with an abbreviation, usually sRGB or DCI-P3. The best gaming monitors are those with 100% sRBG, 100% Adobe-RGB or 100% DCI-P3 color space.
Finally, there is the issue of ergonomics, which affects viewing comfort, especially when using the computer for long periods of time. In fact, gaming laptops have an ergonomic advantage over desktop PCs for the simple reason that you can tilt, swivel, rotate and tilt the screen at almost any angle.
You can even lie on the bed, put or hold the laptop next to you, and so on. One of the benefits of this versatility is the ergonomics of the PC screen, which is usually combined with height adjustable, left and right, forward and backward tilt.
It’s not quite the same as a laptop, but it’s certainly better than nothing, especially with the added comfort of an affordable gaming chair for under $100.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is it worth it to use FreeSync or GSync?
You’ll find that many gaming monitors usually come with AMD FreeSync or, in the case of NVIDIA, G-sync. These two variable refresh technologies allow you to control the screen refresh rate at will, preventing screen stuttering and tearing within the selected dynamic range. However, this is only possible with a compatible GPU.
Some gamers claim that G-sync is better than FreeSync, but NVIDIA’s VVR technology has some drawbacks. For example, it’s certainly not free, which means you have to pay extra money to get it, and it’s also harder to find suitable graphics cards that support this technology (you need them with DisplayPort 1.2a).
One of the benefits is that if you decide to upgrade, you can now use G-sync on a FreeSync monitor.
Which is better – 1080p, 1040p or 4K?
The truth is that 4K monitors are too demanding on the CPU and GPU. So, unless you’re sure your workstation can handle it, limit your 4K dreams to TV in the family room for immersive movie marathons. For games, a slightly lower resolution means you don’t have to lower the image settings or compromise the frame rate.
In other words, choosing the best resolution depends largely on the games you like to play. For graphics games, 1440p 60Hz is ideal, but for competitive first-person shooter games, a 1080p 144Hz gaming monitor is preferred. The most versatile, of course, would be a 1440p 144Hz screen.
Your monitor plays an important role in your gaming setup and influences the dynamics of your workstation. Ultimately, the best gaming monitor under $300 is one that you can comfortably view for a long time and, more importantly, one that is able to consistently and reliably deliver excellent graphics and images.
And if you know what to look for and how to assess your needs and wants, you can easily find a game instructor who is right for you.
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