The Best Gaming Monitors of 2017 (Black Friday Sales on 4K, 1440p, & UltraWide)

By Published November 23, 2017 at 4:38 pm
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In keeping up with our end of the year coverage, such as The Best CPUs of 2017, The Best PC Cases of 2017, and Best RAM sales, we’ve now put together the most noteworthy gaming monitors of the year. Monitors aren’t something we’ve spent much time with this year, although there are a couple we’ve gotten hands-on with and recommend. As the holidays approach—and thus, the most consumer-centric time of the year—we hope this guide of top-rated monitors will help take some of the guesswork out of any purchasing decisions.

We’ll look at best monitors in categories such as UltraWide, 4K gaming, budget 1080p, 1440p, G-Sync, FreeSync, and a handful of honorable mentions. This list includes Black Friday and other sales for monitors.

 

Best Gaming Monitors of 2017

Monitor

Panel Type

Resolution

Price

ASUS VG245H

TN/75Hz/FreeSync

1920 X 1080

$180.00 (List: $200)

BenQ GW2765HT

IPS/60Hz

2560 x 1440

$230.00 (List: $329)
(Use code BF17FLYER01 for $20 off)

AOC Agon AG251FZ

TN/240Hz/FreeSync

1920 X 1080

$400.00 (List: $450)

LG 32UD58P 32”

IPS/60Hz/FreeSync

3840 x 2160

$350.00 (List: $600)
(Use code EMCBBCC46 for $50 off)

ASUS ROG Swift PG258Q

TN/240Hz/G-Sync

1920 X 1080

$513.00 (List: $599)

Acer Predator XB252Q

TN/240Hz/G-Sync

1920 X 1080

$523.00 (List: $549)

ASUS MG279Q

IPS/144Hz/FreeSync

2560 X 1440

$538.00 (List: $599)

LG 34UM88-P

IPS/60Hz/FreeSync

3440 X 1440

$629.95 (List: $799)

Samsung C34F791

VA/100Hz/FreeSync

3440 X 1440

$690.00 (List: $949)

Acer Predator XB271HK

IPS/60Hz/G-Sync

3840 X 2160

$700.00 (List: $900)

Acer XR382CQK

IPS/75Hz/FreeSync

3840 X 1600

$1,026.00

Recapping the year, we saw some of the fastest screens to date with the 240Hz, 1ms TN panels. Similarly, IPS panels continue to evolve with 144 and 165Hz refresh rates, and shrinking response times and input lag. 4K gaming is still a premium pursuit, but the displays are becoming more prevalent and affordable. Additionally, 1080p still remains the most popular gaming resolution. The trends of Quantum Dot, HDR10, 5K, and 8K will likely pervade through 2018.

Best Budget 1080p Gaming Monitor ($180 on sale, $200 list)

ASUS VG245H: The ASUS VG245H will make for a good entry-level/budget display for those looking to get into PC gaming at 1080p. The design is somewhat basic, when compared against ASUS’ flagship products with starship/steampunk aesthetics, but it offers quite a bit for a sub-$200 monitor. The VG245H uses a TN panel with a 75Hz refresh rate and FreeSync. Additionally, ASUS exclusives such as GamePlus and GameVisual are present. Connectivity is limited to HDMI and D-Sub. Some may recoil at the lower refresh rate, but for those looking for a fluid and responsive gaming experience at the lowest cost, you could do far worse.

Best Budget 1440p Gaming Monitor (~$230 on sale, $329 list)

BenQ GW2765HT: Usually listed at $329, this BenQ 27” 1440p IPS display is marked down to $250, with an additional $20 off when using code BF17FLYER01. The display doesn’t offer any adaptive synchronization technologies, but does offer 2560x1440 resolution at an entry-level price, while still managing a 27” IPS panel.

Best 240Hz FreeSync Monitor ($400 on sale, $450 list)

AOC Agon AG251FZ: Arguably the most exciting development in monitors this year was manufactures such as ASUS and Acer trotting out their first 240Hz panels. The Agon AG251FZ is the FreeSync response to the above-mentioned panels, both of which are G-Sync. The AG251FZ uses the expected TN panel for the exceedingly high refresh, and is LED backlight. The display offers Freesync between 48-240Hz, and 8-bit color depth is on tap. Connectivity comes in the form of DisplayPort w/ 240Hz FreeSync support, DVI w/ 144Hz support, and VGA w/ 60Hz support. HDMI 1.4 is also available. For Radeon GPU users with a medium to high-end system, AOC’s Agon AG251FZ will certainly drive a well-above average gaming experience.

Best Budget 4K Monitor ($350 on sale, $600 list)

LG 32UD59-B: We just bought one of these for the lab. For an entry-level 4K display, the LG 32UD59-B is marked down significantly from its list price of $600, making it one of the most affordable 4K monitors on the market. The unit comes with FreeSync and a 60Hz refresh, enabled via HDMI or DisplayPort. Use code EMCBBCC46 for $50 off.

Best G-Sync Monitor ($523 on sale, $550 list)

Acer Predator XB252Q: Both ASUS and Acer seem to be perpetually contending for display supremacy, and that certainly was no different this year, as both rolled out top-rated 240Hz G-Sync displays. G-Sync is still a premium that adds $100-$200 directly on top of a gaming monitors price, but for those with a high-end Nvidia GPU, that surcharge can make sense.

The specs for Acer’s Predator XB252Q are an FHD-resolution TN panel, with LED backlighting. TN panels may seem anti-evolutionary this far along the line, but this is a performance first product, bent on driving frames. G-Sync is available from 24-240Hz, and ULMB is supported though 144Hz. The panel offers 8-bit color and 400 nits brightness, and input comes in the form of HDMI 1.4 and DispalyPort 1.2. We’ve listed Acer’s virtually identical cousin as an honorable mention—it’s worth stating that for most users, the choice will come down to price, styling, or brand loyalty.

Honorable mention: ASUS ROG Swift PG258Q

Best UltraWide Gaming Monitor on a Budget ($690 on sale, $949 list)

Samsung C34F791: Samsung’s C34F791 was initially met with criticisms regarding FreeSync flickering with certain Radeon GPUs; we tested and validated such claims on our sample, and largely found the issue resolved with a driver push from AMD. That said, the display has one of the highest quality panels we’ve used, and offers supreme text clarity. On top of this, it offers respectable gaming chops with FreeSync and a 100Hz refresh rate. Quantum Dot technology and the 1500R curvature make the Samsung C34F971 a pricey option, but those looking for a monitor with gaming and productivity dualism, the C34F791 is aptly suited.

Honorable mention: ASUS MG279Q

Best High-End 4K Gaming Monitor ($700 on sale, $900 list)

Acer Predator XB271HK: As previously stated, 4K gaming is still an expensive endeavor, requiring a ton of rendering power. For those that of elected to invest in a GTX 1080 Ti or Titan XP—or a pair of either—a similarly exquisite monitor might be a good choice. The Acer Predator XB271HK uses a IPS panel, with a refresh rate of 60Hz—refresh rate is compromised at such high-res and pixel density. However, there’s also G-Sync to help stabilize frames and prevent screen tearing. Response time comes in at 4ms, which is accepted of IPS panels. Other specs include 10-bit color depth, 300nits brightness, and HDMI 1.4 and Displayport 1.2 inputs.

Best UltraWide Gaming Monitor ($1026)

Acer XR382CQK: Bringing this list to a close is the most expensive category, UltraWides. For those who want screen real estate, the Acer XR382CQK is one of the top picks of the year. The display uses a 4K IPS panel, with an aspect ratio of 21:10—even more non-standard than 21:9. Widescreen setups suffer from a lack of support from software and games, with not everything scaling equally. So, prospective buyers should be aware of what aspect ratio is supported with their favorite games, software, and content. The XR382CQK also supports FreeSync, albeit the range is narrow at 48-75Hz. Input options are HDMI 2.0, DisplayPort, and DisplayPort out. Finally, the honorable mention here is a model we’ve been using with our machines, so it comes recommended as well.

Honorable mention: LG 34UM88-P

That’s it for our gaming monitor picks for 2017. Should you have a monitor you picked up this year that you think is worth mentioning, leave it in the comments. Also, continue to look for more buying and sales guides coming up!

Last modified on November 23, 2017 at 4:38 pm

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