A gaming monitor is one of the most important things in your PC gaming setup. It is responsible for displaying all of the graphical elements of the game you are playing, so it stands to reason that you should get one that will help elevate your overall experience.
Having said that, there are so many different monitors on the market. The good thing is that this article will provide you with the information that you need as I will go over some of the best gaming monitors in 2020.
I will talk not only about the high-end stuff but also the budget displays so that I can cover the entire spectrum of gamers.
Best Gaming Monitors
1.Asus ROG Swift PG27UQ
If you want a really great gaming monitor with all of the bells and whistles, then the Asus ROG Swift PG27UQ is definitely one of the best out there.
This is a 27-inch 4K gaming monitor with HDR600 support which means that it is not only great for gaming, but it is also amazing for media consumption as well.
It goes without saying that it has the best color accuracy among all of the gaming monitors out there. So good, in fact, that it has an Adobe RGB rating of 99%, which also tells you that this gaming monitor can also be used for creative workloads as well.
I wouldn’t recommend a gaming monitor on this list without a fast refresh rate and the PG27UQ doesn’t disappoint. It can be clocked to 144Hz but you will have to have a capable gaming PC if you want to unlock this monitor’s full potential.
The build quality is amazing and the display has RGB lighting at the back and on the middle portion of the stand as well.
Probably, the only negative I have to say about this thing is its price. At $1,750, it is not affordable. But, for a monitor with impressive graphical fidelity, as well as gaming performance, the Asus ROG Swift PG27UQ definitely takes the cake. If money is not an issue, go for this one without any delay.
2.ViewSonic Elite XG270QG
If you are running an Nvidia RTX graphics card and you want a monitor that natively supports Nvidia’s GSync technology, then the ViewSonic Elite XG270QG is the one that I will recommend.
It is a 27-inch display with a maximum resolution of 1440p and its maximum refresh rate is 165Hz. For most gamers, this monitor should tick all of the right boxes.
Because this uses an IPS panel, colors are vibrant and quite amazing. Screen tearing is not an issue thanks to its GSync capability and I am quite impressed by its very low input lag.
While this monitor doesn’t support HDR and its contrast ratio is low compared to other displays, the ViewSonic Elite XG270QG is built for performance more than anything else.
For people that want to get an ultra-competitive ultrawide monitor for gaming, the Alienware AW3418DW is one that I can wholeheartedly recommend.
It is a 34-inch IPS panel that can be clocked at 120Hz, making this one of the fastest ultrawide gaming monitors on the market.
People that play Dota 2 or other MOBA games would definitely love the fact that this display has a 21:9 aspect ratio which means that a lot of elements in the game can be seen on the monitor without any problems.
You can also use this particular display for creative work as well thanks to its 100% sRGB rating.
While its contrast ratio is low for a gaming monitor, its low input lag and impressive viewing angles make it a great display for gaming nonetheless.
Where this falls short is its low peak brightness, but this is not to say that this isn’t capable of delivering amazing picture quality.
If you are on the lookout for an ultrawide monitor that you can trust, the Alienware AW3418DW has got you covered.
4.Razer Raptor 27
Razer fans will probably be surprised that the company has also dipped its toes into creating competitive gaming monitors. The Razer Raptor 27 is the company’s first and it definitely delivers.
It is a 27-inch IPS display that is GSync-certified to prevent any screen tearing from ever happening. It has 1440p resolution and the monitor can be clocked at a maximum of 144Hz refresh rate.
What impressed me the most is its pretty thin bezels. Because of how thin they are, you are given a lot of screen real estate that makes playing your games even more immersive than ever before.
Its monitor stand is peculiar but I love the fact that it can support the monitor really well. It doesn’t wobble and it looks sleek and elegant.
While this monitor has all of the right ports, the only thing that is probably not appealing for most users is the fact that its cables are colored green. I understand that the company did this for branding purposes, but I think that the colors just do not match the aesthetic of the display itself.
Other than that, the Razer Raptor 27 is another competitive 1440p gaming monitor.
5.Acer Predator XB273K
Acer is another reputable brand when it comes to gaming monitors and the Predator XB273K is one of the best 4K HDR gaming monitors in 2020.
It is a 27-inch IPS display that has 4K resolution and very low response time. It can be set to a maximum of 144Hz refresh rate, but you can only unlock its full capabilities if you have a truly competitive gaming machine.
That being said, while it does support HDR, it doesn’t quite match the picture quality of other monitors out there. Still, this is a nice touch.
This is a GSync enabled display which means that turning the feature on will pretty much make screen tearing a non-issue.
Aside from its plethora of ports, what’s interesting about this monitor is that it has some flaps on the side which is probably intended to keep ambient lighting at bay.
Although this is on the expensive side, the Acer Predator XB273K provides all of the right features a gamer could ask for.
6.Asus TUF VG27AQ
If you are looking for a gaming monitor in this day and age, you need to save enough money to get one that has FreeSync.
The said technology is much like GSync in that it can prevent screen tearing, providing a smoother gaming experience all throughout. The good thing is that FreeSync monitors are reasonably priced and this next recommendation is certainly a testament to that.
The Asus TUF VG27AQ is what I would consider as one of the best 1440p FreeSync gaming monitors on the market.
It is a 27-inch IPS monitor with a resolution of 2560 x 1440 and a max refresh rate of 165Hz.
Although FreeSync was originally a feature that can only be enabled in AMD graphics cards, the said technology is now platform-agnostic which means that you can also enable that using an Nvidia graphics card as well.
And, since this display has it, I would recommend that you enable this variable refresh rate feature to improve your gaming experience.
As for picture quality, it may not have a wide color gamut and its contrast ratio is one of the lowest out there (which is just a common issue of IPS panels, by the way), but it is still pretty good nonetheless.
Its performance is really good thanks to its speedy response time and very low input lag.
So, if you are on the lookout for a good FreeSync gaming monitor, the Asus TUF VG27AQ is a worthy contender indeed.
You might not have heard of this brand before, but Viotek actually produces some of the best budget monitors for gaming on the market. The Viotek GFT27CXB, at the time of writing, is the cheapest 240Hz display that you can buy for under $300.
It is a 27-inch TN panel display with impressive gaming performance thanks to its response time and low input lag. It only has a maximum resolution of 1920 x 1080 but most gaming setups can handle 1080p gaming without any problems.
Aside from its impressive gaming performance, the GFT27CXB also has FreeSync as well, so you can rest assured that all of the graphical elements will be displayed without any tearing or distortions.
Where this falls short is in its overall picture quality. Even though it is passable, its viewing angles are not that good and its color accuracy is not ideal. But, that is to be expected for a TN panel display.
However, its 240Hz refresh rate is certainly appealing to a lot of gamers, so its less-than-stellar color accuracy is a compromise that most people are willing to make.
8.MSI Optix MPG341CQR
It seems that a lot of gamers now prefer curved gaming displays, probably because the screen is curved more to their line of sight, allowing them to see more than a non-curved monitor.
If a curved gaming display is what you want, you would probably fancy the MSI Optix MPG341CQR. It is a 34-inch gaming monitor with a resolution of 1440p and a max refresh rate of 144Hz.
Instead of using either TN or IPS panels, the MPG341CQR uses a VA panel, which offers a better gaming performance and contrast ratio than an IPS panel (in most cases). That is actually true with this monitor.
It has very low input lag and its response time is definitely one of the best among ultrawide gaming displays. The monitor has a curvature of 1800R which is a pretty standard affair.
The aesthetics of the monitor itself definitely screams ‘gamery’. It has RGB lighting at the bottom and at the back which you can configure using MSI’s Dragon Command Center.
What’s interesting here is that you can use the SteelSeries GameSense feature so that some in-game information can be conveyed to you via different colors.
For instance, if you are low on health, the RGB lighting will flash red to indicate your current circumstance. Although it is more of a visual appeal, this is still a welcome thing.
The build quality is great and it has a bevy of ports at the back that should satisfy all of your needs.
A competitive curved gaming monitor, the MSI Optix MPG341CQR deserves praise and mention on this list.
9.BenQ Zowie XL2540
Not too long ago, BenQ acquired Zowie which is a company that was dedicated to creating some of the best peripherals out there. Since the acquisition, BenQ has been making some amazing gaming monitors on the market and this next recommendation certainly is one.
The BenQ Zowie XL2540 is tailor-made for ultra-competitive gaming. It is a 24-inch, 1080p display that can go as high as a 240Hz screen refresh rate! In fact, most CS:GO players are using this monitor just for that and it certainly delivers.
It only uses a TN Panel which means that it is not the best display for media consumption or creative workloads, but this is truly meant for gaming anyway.
What it lacks in picture quality, it makes up for it in its gaming performance. It has a true 1ms response time and its input lag is certainly one of the lowest out there.
It is important for you to know that you will have to calibrate the display first as the colors out of the box are quite inaccurate. Tinkering with the settings should fix that.
Overall, the BenQ Zowie XL2540 is an impressively fast gaming monitor that I can recommend to professional gamers or people that want a very responsive display.
If you want a budget gaming monitor from a reputable brand, the ViewSonic XG2402 is one of the best out there.
It is a 24-inch TN panel display with a resolution of 1080p and a maximum refresh rate of 144Hz. What I love about this is that it is definitely fast (which is ideal for gaming) but more importantly, it has FreeSync so that screen tearing is basically eliminated out of the equation.
Because it only uses a TN panel, you can expect mediocre picture quality and bad viewing angles, but that is to be expected given the said display panel.
It is also worth noting that HDR is out of the question here, though the monitor does come with a lot of ports to plug in your favorite gaming headsets or other peripherals.
Still, the ViewSonic XG2402 is one of the best budget gaming monitors with FreeSync out there. This should be on your shortlist if you are shopping for inexpensive displays for gaming.
Amazon Luna- Everything You Need to Know About Amazon’s Cloud Gaming Service
It seems that cloud gaming is the future as a lot of companies are pooling their resources just to make things happen.
Amazon Luna is Amazon’s foray into cloud gaming and it is going to be available soon. Read further to find out more information about this new experience.
Google has paved the way for cloud gaming to come to the fore with the release of the Stadia not too long ago. Although it was mired with a lot of different issues, it seems that the company has found a way to make things work.
Amazon also wants in on the action and although there are some similarities with Luna and Stadia, there are also some stark differences as well.
Before I begin, I just want to explain the concept of cloud gaming. Basically, instead of downloading games to your gaming PC or whatever platform you choose to install them, you will just stream those games using data centers that are scattered all over the world.
It should go without saying that you need to have a fast internet connection to make this happen and so that you will not experience high latency (which was a huge problem when Stadia launched).
That being said, the premise of Google Stadia is that you need to either purchase an individual game so that you can play it at any time (forever) or you could subscribe to the monthly plan and play the games that are on offer every month (and continue to play them so long as you’re subscribed).
With Amazon Luna, you will be presented with different channels that you can subscribe to. Each of these channels has different games on offer which makes this quite appealing for game developers to show their mettle.
Right now, the platform is still in beta and there are only two channels available at the moment- Amazon’s own Luna Plus and the Ubisoft Channel. The latter will have 50 games that you can play right away and more Ubisoft games will be added in the future.
Keep in mind that this channel-based system makes it so that developers can price their services accordingly. It remains to be seen how much Ubisoft will charge individual users, so stay tuned for that.
1080p and 4K Gaming
Just like Google Stadia, Amazon Luna will support both 1080p and 4K resolutions. Of course, the latter would be more taxing and you will need a fast internet connection to be able to enjoy high-fidelity gaming. I suggest that you get a WiFi 6 router and a compatible device to make the most out of your experience.
Unlike Stadia, Amazon Luna is more flexible in that it supports a lot of different devices. Not only can you play on your PC, but you can also choose to play it using your iOS devices, Android phones, and you can even utilize the company’s own FireTV devices as well.
Now, there has been this entire debacle about Apple’s 30% cut on every app in its App store but the good news is that Amazon can circumvent that.
You see, when you are going to play on your iOS devices, the application will actually be a PWA or a Progressive Web App. Basically, the game that you want to play will run in a contained web browser instead of it being an actual application that you install in your device. This bypasses the whole 30% cut issue which is a good thing.
NVIDIA Hardware Use
According to a recent Steam survey, the vast majority of PC users are all using NVIDIA graphics cards. This is a good thing for Amazon Luna because it means that it can support a lot more people.
That is because the company’s cloud gaming service will use NVIDIA GPUs instead of AMD cards (which Stadia uses for graphics processing).
Supposing that Amazon Luna will be more popular than any other cloud gaming service out there, NVIDIA will enjoy huge profits as a result.
Can Be Streamed to Popular Sites
Twitch is arguably the most popular streaming platform today and Amazon is looking to forge a partnership with the said service to allow you to stream your games to the popular website.
The said platform is widely used as a means of generating revenue- something that is quite popular today due to the recent pandemic.
This move also makes it appealing as well as more and more content creators can use Amazon Luna to reach a broader audience.
New Controller with Alexa Support
Just like Google Stadia, Amazon Luna also requires you to get a special controller. The good thing is that the control will have a microphone so that you can use Alexa for specific voice commands.
What’s interesting about the Luna’s controller is that it is completely connected to the Cloud, which means that you do not have to pair it with the specific device you are going to use to play games online.
According to Amazon’s website, it should have a grippy texture and will feature low-friction thumbsticks that provide maximum performance across the board. By using the controller’s microphone, you can actually tell Alexa to fire up the specific game that you want to play, so long as it is inside the channel that you’ve subscribed to.
Amazon Luna is quite enticing, at least, on paper. It is shaping up to be a better cloud gaming service compared to its competitors but the service is still in beta, so there are more things that need ironing out before its official release.
Right now, there are only two channels that are available and Ubisoft hasn’t imposed its pricing yet. The Amazon Luna channel is priced at $6.99
If you are interested in getting in on the action, you can be an early beta tester by subscribing to the service.
Amazon Luna will be out sometime in October.
Acer Nitro XV340CK Review- A Greatly Competitive Ultrawide Gaming Monitor Under $500
Ultrawide monitors used to be a niche display in that the only people who work on productivity tasks and creative workloads usually buy them.
Fortunately, the display technology has evolved and gamers, too, can enjoy a much wider screen.
Today, I am going to review the Acer Nitro XV340CK which is a 34-inch ultrawide gaming monitor that is priced competitively.
Even though this is marketed as a gaming monitor, the Acer Nitro XV340CK actually doesn’t look like it. It looks simple and I love the aesthetics, especially if you want to place this in your office.
The only thing that might make you think that this is a gaming display is that red accent that you can find on the base of the monitor but that’s about it.
Anyway, let’s start with the stand. Aside from the aforementioned red accent, the stand provides good ergonomics.
It gives you the ability to swivel the monitor a complete 360 degrees, you can tilt it to 35 degrees back and you can adjust the height up to 5.9 inches. Because this is an ultrawide monitor, you cannot put this thing in portrait mode.
I love the fact that this monitor has slim bezels. At only 0.4 inches, you can place another monitor right beside it and it wouldn’t really take a lot of screen real estate at all.
The overall build quality is good. Despite the fact that it doesn’t feel premium, at least when compared to the best gaming monitors out there, it still feels sturdy nevertheless.
For the ports, you get two Displayport 1.4 ports, two HDMI 2.0 ports, and two USB 3.0 ports. Due to the wealth of ports on offer, you can use this for your PC or your game console.
The only thing that might be cumbersome for some users is that the OSD controls are situated at the back of the monitor- particularly on the bottom right side. The buttons are also a bit smaller than usual, so you may have a hard time pressing the right ones.
The Acer Nitro XV340CK has a 34-inch IPS display with a resolution of 3440 x 1440 and an aspect ratio of 21:9. It is the same as other ultrawide gaming monitors that you can find on the market so there is no problem with that.
You do have the option to enable the picture-in-picture mode so that you can divide the display in two if you wish to fire up two different programs at the same time. This is why it is not only a handy gaming monitor, but it can also be used for office work as well.
Its contrast and brightness leave much to be desired. With a native contrast ratio of 1048:1 and peak SDR brightness of only 247 nits, it is not the best display when it comes to these things.
However, its redeeming quality is that its colors are accurate. After calibration, I got 95% sRGB, 82% AdobeRGB, and 81% DCI-P3. It is relatively color accurate and it would have been nice for creative workloads, but its peak brightness just falls short of making it an ideal display for such use-cases.
It is also worth noting that if you are in a well-lit room that the brightness could be a huge issue. The good thing is that the display’s matte finish can help reduce glare significantly, though you will still find that it is not bright enough in some situations.
I am surprised by the fact that there is literally no color bleed on the Acer Nitro XV340CK. This is unheard of, especially since ultrawide monitors are notorious for this.
Sure, its peak brightness and contrast could have improved, but gamers are not especially focused on those things. If anything, it is the performance of the display that usually takes the cake and I am happy to report that you won’t be disappointed with the Nitro XV340CK.
Normally, with IPS panels, they tend to not have a good response time, but that is actually not the case here. At just 5.3ms, it is definitely one of the best out there even when compared to other, more premium models.
How about input lag? This is a speed monitor and as expected, input lag is minimal. At just 4.2ms, I am really blown away by the performance of this thing. Every keypress on your gaming keyboard will register almost immediately and that is really great from a competitive standpoint.
It is also worth noting that its 144Hz refresh rate is ideal, especially since most gamers are clamoring for high refresh rate displays anyway.
This is a FreeSync gaming monitor and you can enable this variable refresh rate feature in both AMD and Nvidia graphics cards.
To get a hold of the said features, it is important for you to know that you should use the DisplayPort cable that is included in the box. There is also an included HDMI cable if you want to use this display for your Xbox or Playstation consoles.
With all of those things being said, if I were to ask you how much this thing costs, what will be your guess? If you’ve guessed around $700, you’re wrong.
The Acer Nitro XV340CK is priced at just $450! At that price, you are getting a relatively color-accurate monitor, a really fast display with minimal input lag, and a vast number of ports that you can use for your PC or game consoles.
Sure, its contrast and peak brightness could have been improved, but if you are talking about raw gaming performance, the Acer Nitro XV340CK blows other ultrawide gaming monitors out of the way.
Just make sure that you have a nice gaming PC for this thing to work nicely. Other than that, I highly recommend the Acer Nitro XV340CK for its price and performance.
HyperX Cloud Stinger S- A Comfortable 7.1 Surround Sound Gaming Headset
As an audiophile, I’ve always loved HyperX’s gaming audio solution. They are inexpensive and for the price, you are actually getting sound quality that you normally would only hear from expensive products.
In today’s article, I am going to review the HyperX Cloud Stinger S. This is a budget offering that aims to improve upon the original Cloud Stinger with the inclusion of a 7.1 surround sound option.
Do I recommend this headset? Find out later on in the article.
The HyperX Cloud Stinger S is actually quite similar to the original version. It has the same pleather ear cups that envelope your ears quite nicely and the clamping force of the headset itself is actually quite okay.
I’ve been receiving reports that there are some people that have problems with the tightness or, shall I say, how loose this thing can be. But that will probably be a result of the size of your head and not the actual product itself. For me, the fit was okay, but your mileage may vary.
Although this thing is predominantly made in plastic, the overall build quality is good, though I would advise you not to throw this headset when you lose a round in a MOBA game or first-person shooter.
There is a microphone on this headset and just like the original, it is not removable. It would have been nice if you could remove it when you are not using it because even if you fold the microphone (which also acts as a way of muting it), you will still see it which can be annoying at times.
This thing is quite simple and all you have for the controls is the volume slider that is located on the right ear cup.
While other HyperX gaming headsets come with a carrying pouch, I am sad to say that the HyperX Cloud Stinger S doesn’t have one.
All you get in the box aside from the headset is a USB dongle that is attached to a relatively long cable and some documentation. And, since you use this thing completely wired, it can also be used in your Playstation or other game consoles as well.
The 3.5mm analog cable should be inserted in the USB dongle if you wish to use its 7.1 surround sound implementation, but if you are just going to watch movies or play non-competitive games, I suggest that you do not use it.
There are two modes that you can utilize if you are going to use the HyperX Cloud Stinger S. You can use its 3.5mm headphone jack and enjoy stereo sound or you could insert that into the included USB dongle and use the 7.1 surround sound feature.
Keep in mind that if you are going to use the 7.1 output that it is only supported on the PC since you will need the NGENUITY software to enable it.
That being said, the HyperX Cloud Stinger S’ sound signature leans more toward being bright and with a little emphasis on the bass. This seems to be the preference of the majority of gamers since lower frequencies can make those in-game sounds pop-out more.
I also love the mid frequencies as it is quite balanced as well. I’ve had no problems listening to in-game dialog and when I am using the microphone, it just works really well.
Although the high frequencies are okay, I would say that it is the weakest of the bunch, though not so much as to diminish the overall sound quality. You will still hear the sibilance of the cymbals and lead guitars, but it is not as pronounced as the lower and mid frequencies.
As for the 7.1 surround sound, you should enable it in the companion software and it is only available when you are on the PC.
Anyway, its surround sound is okay but I say this because it is a budget gaming headset. If you compare it to the more premium ones, this is subpar at best. Still, you could enable it in your favorite games but I will advise against it if you are just listening to music or watching movies.
Despite a relatively good clamping force, the HyperX Cloud Stinger S doesn’t do so well in terms of sound isolation. People around me can still hear what I was listening to, so this might not be ideal if you are playing at night and there are people sleeping.
There is usually this notion that budget headsets have horrible microphones but not the HyperX Cloud Stinger S. In fact, I would go on to say that it has one of the better ones on the market.
Instead of sounding tinny, the microphone quality of the Cloud Stinger S is full-bodied and my teammates can hear every word I said without any problems.
The volume of the microphone is also quite good as well. Normally, with budget offerings, you tend to sound a bit ‘too far’ but that is not the case here.
Overall, I am quite pleased with the microphone. The only thing that I do not like is that the flippable microphone may impede your vision sometimes, but I think that you can adjust to this.
For a budget headset, the HyperX Cloud Stinger S is definitely one of the better sounding ones. I also love the fact that the microphone’s quality is top-notch and it can even go head-to-head against its more premium counterparts.
I am just a bit disappointed that you do not get a carrying pouch with this one because other HyperX gaming headsets have them. But, this is a minor inconvenience.
I did not feel the need to talk about the NGENUITY software mainly because it is pretty barebones and all you can do with it is to enable the 7.1 surround sound, adjust the volume and microphone, and that’s about it. There is no equalizer present which is quite odd.
Still, for what it is giving you, the HyperX Cloud Stinger S is highly recommended. This thing costs $60.
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