It’s always a good time to consider getting a new gaming monitor. While they are, of course, subject to usual hardware cycles in terms of model refreshes, they are often discounted, and, importantly, are never made totally redundant just by the introduction of the newest variant. Their quality endures, often well beyond other PC parts and peripherals.
When looking at the best cheap gaming monitor deals, you’ll always want to keep a few things in mind; factors that might well transcend the pricetag (initially at least).
A big decision is whether or not to go for the upper echelons of gaming monitor techs in the form of 4K and/or HDR, and whether or not you actually need them in your gaming monitor. Most of our best gaming monitors aren’t actually 4K because its still quite an expensive move to make, and the resolution often results in lower refresh rates. But it is glorious if you’re happy to trade in some of those refresh rates. However, we still think that sweet spot for gaming is the 1440p mark, so if you can get a panel that can manage 144Hz at that resolution, and that comes with FreeSync or G-Sync, you’ll be doing well and setting yourself up for visual delights. If you really do have an unlimited budget though, and one of the best gaming PCs to boot, then, sure, look at what 4K options are always available. For more info on these beasts, check out our run-down of the best 4K monitors for gaming.
The best cheap gaming monitor deals this week (UK)
Our favourite gaming monitors
1. ASUS ROG Swift PG279Q
The best gaming monitor with G-Sync
Screen size: 27-inch | Panel type: IPS | Aspect ratio: 16:9 | Resolution: 2560 x 1440 | Response time: 4ms | Refresh rate: 144Hz (overclocks to 165Hz) | Weight: 15.4 lbs
In our eyes, the top gaming monitor out there right now is the Asus ROG Swift PG279Q. This 27-inch monitor has a 2560×1440 resolution—which we currently consider the sweet spot for high-end gaming—and it offers substantially more pixels than 1080p without being as demanding as a 4K panel. This results in games looking super sharp at 27 inches but the display won’t bring a good GPU down. In addition to this, higher than 60Hz refresh rates are still doable—something not possible on the current crop of 4K displays.
Much like its main competition—the Acer Predator XB271HU—the PG279Q is an IPS panel with a refresh rate that can be boosted to 165Hz. (It’s worth noting, though that the difference between 144Hz and 165Hz is negligible.) Inputs include one HDMI 1.4 and one DisplayPort 1.2a and the monitor also features Nvidia’s G-Sync technology for variable refresh rates (assuming you’re using an Nvidia graphics card). If you’re an AMD user, however, you won’t benefit from G-Sync and should probably consider FreeSync monitor.
Unfortunately, and a bit predictably, the biggest drawback to this great monitor is its price and while you can find it below the $800/£700 mark, its not by much currently. However, we consider a monitor a fine investment in your PC setup and you never want to buy something you’ll have to replace in two years; you want to buy a terrific monitor that will still be going strong in five or so years, ideally. There are 144Hz IPS monitors similar to Asus’s offering, but with FreeSync instead of G-Sync. The Asus ROG Swift PG279Q, however, is the best choice and all its bang will be worth every one of your bucks.
2. Acer Predator X27
The best HDR gaming monitor
Screen size: 27-inch | Panel type: IPS | Aspect ratio: 16:9 | Resolution: 3840 x 2160 | Response time: 4ms | Refresh rate: 120Hz (overclocks to 144Hz) | Weight: 27.12 lbs
The Acer Predator X27 is an absolutely fantastic monitor that pumps out a crisp 4K resolution, splendid HDR displays, and comes with G-Sync, and a high refresh rate. Marrying an IPS panel to a refresh rate of up to 144Hz when overclocked, the Acer Predator X27 is a breathtaking sight. However, its VisionCare technology, Acer declares, will help to prevent eye strain during longer play sessions. G-Sync allows the monitor to refresh at a variable rate instead of being locked to its max (in this case, 144Hz) and it syncs to your in-game framerate, removing any microstutter or screen tearing when the framerate doesn’t quite match up perfectly to that high 144Hz demand.
The Acer Predator X27 welcomes a number of connectivity ports on its left and rear: two USB 3.0 ports on the side; and two USB 3.0 ports as well as HDMI 2.0 and DisplayPort 1.4 out on the back. So, despite the high asking price, the X27 is absolutely worth considering, particularly if it ever receives extra reduction in the holiday sales.
3. ASUS MG279Q
The best Freesync gaming monitor
Screen size: 27-inch | Panel type: IPS | Aspect ratio: 16:9 | Resolution: 2560 x 1440 | Response time: 4ms | Refresh rate: 144Hz | Weight: 15.9 lbs
For those AMD users who want a FreeSync dispay, there is no better monitor than the Asus MG279Q. It’s a 1440p IPS screen that can refresh up to 144Hz, but because it uses the open FreeSync technology instead of G-Sync, it’s not as pricey.
The base design makes for a sturdy monitor while also allowing for plenty of tilting, pivoting, and height adjustments, and the bezel is pretty thin, which is good for a 27-inch monitor that already takes up a bit of space. It also has a light anti-gloss coating: —something that some older IPS displays went too heavy on which resulted in affecting the image quality, but it works very well on the MG279Q.
Due to the great IPS screen, colors look fabulous even from off-angles and the contrast ratio is really fantastic too. Elsewhere, the ability to support multiple inputs offers great flexibility, particularly to those who might want to add a second system like a console. This is thanks to the presence of the internal scaler—one of the main differences between G-Sync and FreeSync. With no other IPS FreeSync displays that can match the MG279Q on specs, this is a terrific monitor and easily the best choice for those that have an AMD graphics card.
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