Anyone who has looked into buying a gaming monitor will have come across the different panel technologies on offer – whether you know what they mean or not. You will have most likely heard or seen TN (Twisted Nematic), VA (Vertically Aligned), and IPS (In-plane Switching).
TN: These types of panels have always featured the fastest refresh rates since CRTs were replaced back in the day. Competitive gamers who play fast-paced action titles usually will go for a TN panel. TN panels boast the highest refresh rates and until recently used to post the best response times too.
Of course, there is a compromise when going for TN and that is mostly color accuracy and poor viewing angles but these are negligible if you are buying a monitor for hardcore gaming.
VA: VA displays are often seen as something in-between TN and IPS, offering better viewing angles and response times all in one monitor. Like TN panels, VA is a cheaper alternative to IPS and will often feature higher refresh rates for less. Color accuracy can vary from model to model but VA panels are generally considered to be better than TN.
IPS: IPS panels have grown in popularity significantly over recent years, mainly thanks to the increased responsiveness that they now offer. Historically, the main benefits of an IPS panel were found in the color and picture quality departments. However, since many IPS panels can now boast 144Hz refresh rates and low 1ms response times, we’re seeing more and more individuals opt for the more expensive panel alternative.