We’ve listed several features to consider before purchasing your new monitor. Hard-core gamers believe some features are must-have while other features are considered a bonus. To our surprise, most sought-after features are available on these budget monitors. They may not have the same resolution or size as the higher-end models, but the 21″, 24″, 25″, and 27″ monitors are excellent for desktops or when using multiple monitors at once.
We’ve also researched several monitors and their features in a variety of sizes that are affordable. We hope this guide helps you find the perfect gaming monitor to suit your needs.
Available Features to Consider Before Buying
- OSD settings – on screen display controls for brightness, volume, contrast, and other options
- sRGB – the ability to optimize and streamline colors-the higher the sRGB the better
- Contrast ratio – ratio of the luminance of the brightest color (white) to that of the darkest color (black)
- Response time – the ability to eliminate ghosting or blurring during image panel changes
- Ports – consider the type of devices you plan to use and whether or not the monitor is compatible
- 3D – not quite as popular of a feature as it once was – it is not a common feature on gaming monitors
- IPS (In-Plane Switching) Technology – allows uncompromised viewing from all angles
- Tilt Options
- VESA mountable
- AI light technology – detects light environment to adjust immediate movie/game blinding effect
- Pre-set game modes – FPS (first person shooter)
- Speakers – not all monitors include built-in speakers or if they do, they may not be the size you are looking for
- Black Stabalizer – enhances dark scenes to eliminate surprise attacks in high-action gaming
- Split-Screen option – the ability to incorporate more than one screen for work, gaming, etc.
- FlickerFree or Low Blue Light technology – reduces strain on the eyes
Budget 21-inch Gaming Monitors
Winner of the 2013 Computex Design and Innovation Award for its thoughtful design, this widescreen Acer monitor would make an excellent gaming monitor. The Acer eColor Management lets users enhance image performance in a variety of different viewing scenarios with the touch of a button. The rapid 5ms response time reduces ghosting between panel changes and the IPS (In-Plane Switching) technology provides excellent color performance no matter what angle you are viewing the monitor from.
With 1920 x 1080 resolution, it’s perfect for viewing, work, and gaming. It has a 100 million:1 contrast ratio (the ratio of the luminance of the brightest color-white to that of the darkest color-black) that allows users to view detailed photos, browse the web, and more.
The VGA, DVI, and HDMI inputs allow you to charge and view your smartphone or tablet on a Full HD display. It features a zero frame design and allows easy access to buttons under the bezel. The screen also tilts 5-15 degrees.
This HP monitor has a 1920 x 1080 Full HD display with Technicolor Color Certification for true color accuracy. A 7ms response time and 10 million:1 dynamic contrast ratio ensure smooth and true image changes without ghosting. It contains user control OSD settings which allow users to adjust brightness, volume, contrast, and other components directly on the monitor. It also has the ability to save your favorites settings by using the HP MyDisplay software.
This monitor includes VGA and HDMI with HDCP ports with easy access and has a forward tilt of 5 degrees with a back tilt of 25 degrees. The bezel-less display has viewing angles of 178 degrees allowing perfect views from any angle. At 6.3mm at its thinnest point, it has an ultra slim design allowing it to blend in with any environment. The HP 21″ monitor is the perfect size for integrating multiple monitors especially for hard-core gamers.
Budget 24-inch Gaming Monitors
The ASUS Full HD monitor has a resolution of 1920 x 1080 with a 2ms response time eliminating ghosting and creating perfect image changes. Aspect control function allows users to choose their favorite display modes for true color gaming without losing data or distorting images. It includes 6 preset color modes and 3 preset skin tone modes.
The exclusive Splendid Video Intelligence technology increases image quality including color, brightness, contrast, and sharpness. ASUS Smart Contrast Ratio is 10 million:1. Another great feature is the integrated AI light which automatically detects your lighting environment. This adjusts the display brightness and prevents the opening game/movie blinding sensation.
It includes a clean cable management design and comes with a 3-year warranty. This stylish streamlined design monitor is also VESA mountable.
With the extremely fast response time and Splendid Video Intelligence technology, the ASUS monitor is an excellent choice for gamers.
ViewSonic incorporates the ClearMotiv II technology that has 2ms ultra fast response time creating perfect images and seamless panel changing without blurring or ghosting. It has a Full HD resolution of 1920 x 1080 and a 50 million:1 ultra-high dynamic contrast ratio.
In game mode, visibility and details in dark scenes are enhanced to ward off surprise attacks in high-action FPS games. This monitor includes ports for VGA, HDMI, and DVI-D with HDCP. It has 2 built-in 2W speakers and a 3-year limited warranty. It is also VESA mountable.
ViewSonic has an excellent reputation for great monitors. The dark scene enhancement feature and fast response time make it an excllent choice.
Surprisingly, a known brand name monitor with 3D capabilities is incredibly affordable. The Acer gaming display has a Full HD resolution of 1920 x 1080 to allow excellent viewing for all gaming, multimedia, and productivity applications. The rapid 1ms response time reduces blurring and enables seamless panel changes.
This widescreen monitor has 16:9 HD digital content and a contrast ratio of 100 million:1. The refresh rate is impressive at 144Hz. It has a slim profile and x-shaped stand for easy access to the VGA, DVI, and HDMI inputs. You can also access your smartphone or tablet.
It is NVIDIA 3D vision ready and the NVIDIA 3D Lightboost provides amazing 3D imagery. It incorporates advanced active shutter 3D technology. Multiple pairs of glasses can be used at once. This Acer Display is an excellent buy for movie buffs and gamers alike.
The high refresh rate and 3D capabilities make it a popular choice for gamers and movie buffs alike.
Budget 25-inch Gaming Monitors
LG is well known for their excellent advances in technology. Their UM57 monitor lives up to their standards with amazing features sought after by gamers. It has an Ultrawide Full HD resolution of 2560 x 1080. Also incorporated is the IPS (In-Plane Switching) technology which enhances the performance of liquid crystal display and enables excellent viewing from all angles.
With a 5 million:1 Dynamic Fine Contrast Ratio and a 5ms response time, you are certain to enjoy a clear picture without blurring. The sRGB (standard color space of ideal color reproduction) is over 99%.
Gamers will enjoy the Black Stabilizer feature that brightens dark scenes eliminating surprise attacks in high action games. The Dynamic Action Sync technology ensures every moment is caught in real time. 3 game modes are incorporated with 2 FPS (first person shooter) modes and 1 RTS preset mode.
Perfect for simultaneous work and play, this LG monitor allows you to have up to 4 split screens at once. You can view work documents, watch a movie, and keep up with the latest football scores all at once. LG’s new Flicker Safe system is certified by TUV incorporating a dimming technology that minimizes the flicker level and reduces eye fatigue. This ultrawide LG also includes 2 HDMI inputs.
Features like the Black Stabilizer, split-screen capabilities, fast response time, and IPS technology make this a sure bet for any gamer.
This contemporary HP Pavilion design has a thin profile and features a white and silver color. The open wedge stand allows easy access to the VGA and dual HDMI ports.
With Full HD 1920 x 1080 resolution and a dynamic contrast ratio of 10 million:1, you can enjoy excellent image coloring. The 7ms response time adds impressive viewing quality eliminating ghosting. Technicolor certified, the Pavilion also features an anti-glare display.
It also contains IPS technology to allow viewing from all angles. This monitor also includes FlickerFree technology to reduce eye fatigue and LED backlighting. Tilt is available at 2 degrees forward or 25 degrees backward. The HP enhanced resolution improves image quality. It also includes a 1-year limited warranty.
The tilt and FlickerFree technology features in addition to being Technicolor certified make this HP monitor a great choice.
Budget 27-inch Gaming Monitors
The BenQ Monitor has Full HD 1080p resolution with 16:9 dynamic contrast ratio for an excellent visual experience. True colors are viewed with the BenQ Synseye Human Vision technology. 6 proprietary calibration techniques are also included.
Senseye 3 includes pre-set viewing modes including standard, movie, game, photo, sRGB, reading, and eco-v. The 4ms response time is anti-ghosting.
Exclusive RevolutionEyes technology features flicker-free technology, Low Blue Light, and purpose built color modes to decrease eye fatigue. BenQ also adjusted the monitor’s color temperature, brightness, contrast ratio, and sharpness and created a new reading mode. This mode simulates the look of printed paper making reading documents easier than ever before.
178-degree viewing angles and Color Shift-Free technology reduces color washout and shifting allowing an excellent view from all angles.
The BenQ monitor features a slim design and offers HDMI, VGA, DVI ports and a line in and out for audio and headphones.
BenQ incorporated many of their exclusive technological advances into this monitor. In addition to its available features, it is a trusted name among gamers.
ViewSonic’s frameless design widescreen monitor features 1920 x 1080 Full HD resolution and mercury-free LED backlighting. SuperClear IPS panel technology allows 178-degree viewing angles without compromising image quality. With 30 million:1 MEGA dynamic Contrast ratio and 169:9 aspect ratio, viewers can expect high-quality imaging without distortion.
Included sRGB color correction technology reproduces 100% sRGB color for exact color display including camera and camcorder content. Watching home movies is a whole new experience. Dual stereo speakers with SRS Premium Sound are included along with HDMI, DVI with HDCP, and VGA inputs.
The widescreen ViewSonic is an excellent buy with great features and comes with a 3-year warranty.
100% sRGB is a common feature among gaming monitors making this ViewSonic an ideal choice.
As you can see, it is entirely possible to purchase a high-quality gaming monitor for under $200 without giving up today’s latest features. BenQ, LG, ViewSonic, HP, Acer, and ASUS all offer excellent selections in this price range without leaving out the newest technology each brand is now offering. With many choices of features, we hope we have helped you see what is available. We hope you have enjoyed this guide and wish you the best in your search for your ideal gaming monitor.
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