Things To Consider
Selecting the correct monitor for your specific needs and requirements can be a stressful experience. Fear not though, our team have tried and tested the best ultrawide gaming monitors in today’s market to make the choice much easier.
Below we have listed the key areas that need consideration when looking to purchase a gaming monitor:
Screen resolution, in a nutshell, is how many pixels can be displayed at any one time on the monitor in reference. As a general rule, the image quality of a higher resolution monitor will be far greater than that of a lower resolution monitor. So, to put that into context with ultra-wide monitors, higher resolutions mean more information on the screen and crisper images overall. However, be aware, these resolutions will be much more taxing on your PC’s GPU.
Resolutions in ultra-wide monitors vary from 2560×1080, 3440 x 1440, 3840 x 1600, and 5120 x 2160 (better known as 4k). Each one will perform differently within real-world gaming situations so making sure the screen resolution matches your PC’s performance is an area that could save you hundreds of dollars respectively.
Ultimately, choosing the right screen resolution for your needs is going to come down to budget and PC specifications. If you can accommodate for both these factors, you’re laughing!
As most will probably already know, the aspect ratio is a proportional measurement between an image’s height and width. In monitors, aspect ratios vary depending on the shape of your display and allow consumers to decide whether that monitor is right for their needs.
Common aspect ratios include:
- 21:9 (Ultra-wide)
If you’re looking to buy an ultrawide display, specifically to serve as a gaming monitor, it’s worth making sure the games you’re looking to play can accommodate the wider aspect ratio. If not, you’ll find your viewing experience tarnished by black dead space on either side of the display.
Many modern game titles will support these wider ratio’s but it’s always worth checking before making a purchase.
A refresh rate is a measurement of how many times your screen refreshes its image per second. Modern monitors have rates between 60 and 240 and are measured in hertz. This is particularly important for gamers, as a low refresh rate can produce what is commonly known as screen tearing.
Screen tearing occurs when your GPU sends more frames per second to your monitor than it can handle, producing two images in one refresh. To combat this, you either cap your FPS to the refresh rate of your monitor or buy a monitor with a higher refresh rate which matches your FPS. However, you can see how this could be problematic if you need to decrease your FPS.
G-sync and free-sync are technologies that have been incorporated into new monitors to help reduce the effects of screen tearing.
Response time is a measurement of how fast your monitor’s pixels can display a change from black to white, and back to black again. It can also be measured in GTG, (Grey-to-grey) which refers to how fast your monitor can change from one shade of grey to another.
Milliseconds are the standard form of measurement for response time and can vary from anything between 8ms to 1ms. As you’ve probably worked out by now, a lower response time is much better than a higher one.
So, how does this affect me as a gamer? Good question.
Longer response times can result in display ghosting which is where you can see the remains of trails from a moving image because your pixels took too long to change. As a gamer, who wants to be completely immersed in their games, screen ghosting is a real problem as they produce quite obvious visual defects.
If you’re looking for a great gaming monitor we would highly recommend purchasing a display with 4ms or under to help eradicate any distracting, off-putting visual defects caused by screen ghosting.
Panel type can be a little daunting and seen as quite technical by some people, but it’s really not. Different panels offer different features and benefits and drastically alter the final price of the monitor in question. It will contribute to the response time and image clarity as well.
TN – Twisted nematic panels have the lowest response times but don’t have the best image quality or viewing angles.
IPS – In-plane switching panels have brilliant viewing angles, solid color reproduction, and as a general rule have higher response times than TN.
VA – Vertical Alignment panels are a compromise and mixture of the two. Not considered the best for gaming but do offer a solid budget option.
Our recommendation when looking at buying a gaming monitor is to stick to IPS as they offer the best image quality and color reproduction. However, if you’re on a budget there’s nothing wrong with the VA or TN panels if you find the right one.