The best gaming monitor offers you the right mix of refresh rate, resolution, and size to immerse you in your favorite gaming world. To make the most of what your CPU and GPU can achieve, a gaming monitor is one of the key components of your gaming setup, and definitely a worthy investment in the longer run.
However, when you have refresh rates, size, pixel density, aspect ratios, curvatures, response times, different connections, color reproduction, contrast level, panel types, and a budget to look at – where do you begin? How do you decide what aspect matters most?
Let us help you look beyond the marketing gimmicks and choose the best monitor with most fitting features based upon your budget.
Aspect Ratios and Resolutions
If you are under the notion that a larger screen resolution translates to being the best, we are here to tell you otherwise, or at least base your decision on your gaming choices. The aspect ratio directly correlates with the pixel resolution. As most monitors fall into a few resolutions, they are then widened for a wider ratio. You will notice a standard 1080p monitor with a 1920×1080 pixels resolution with a 16:9 aspect ratio, and an ultra-wide 1080p monitor with a resolution of 2560×1080 pixels. Even though the height remains uniform, there are more pixels horizontally, giving a 21:9 aspect ratio.
The most common ratio and resolution we hear are 16:9 and 1080p. Whereas 2560×1440 is known as 1440p and 3840×2160 is 4K or UHD. The 21:9 ultrawide screen ratio has gained more gaming traction as the greater width provides a better immersion experience as it equips you with more visibility in the peripheral. The enemies are yours to take over now!
The super ultra-wide ratio of 32:9 – basically the benefit of two monitors without the bezels provides a complete immersion for flight simulation games. However, make sure to match your graphics card handles with the desired resolution and game settings, such as Philips Curved SuperWide-LCD-Display 32:9 498P9Z.
Does Size Matter?
In the monitor world, it does!
We recommend choosing the monitor size and then the appropriate resolution with the distance you will sit from the monitor. Your monitor size affects the pixel density for a given resolution. For example, with a 16:9 ratio as the base and same viewing distance, a 1080p 24-inch monitor looks sharper than a 1080p 32-inch monitor despite the same resolution. The reason for this is that the 32-inch monitor has lesser pixel density. However, the large size benefits you if you sit further from the monitor. Resolution and size are the biggest factor for pricing, within monitor groups with equal technology.
Which Panel would you Prefer?
Let’s talk about panels – from Twisted Nematic (TN), Vertical Alignment (VA), In-plane Switching (IPS), and OLED – the panel world has come a long way through. Typical gaming monitors use Twisted Nematic to achieve the fastest refresh rates for competitive players. However, IPS are also becoming popular with technological progression due to accuracy in color reproduction at acute angles and higher refresh rates such as Philips 24M1N3200ZA. The latest models have VA panels, which is between TN and IPS, while OLED is the most expensive option per pixel light control for the best experience.
The Most Hyped Factor – Refresh Rate
As a competitive gamer, you may consider refresh rates as the end-all for gaming. Refresh rate is the number of times a monitor update in a second (measured in Hertz). The most common refresh rates you will find in the market are 120, 144, and 165. However, you will need to decide whether your graphics card can handle it because if your graphics card cannot handle it, there is no point in splurging into a higher refresh rate!
Make Tearing, Stuttering, and Judder a Thing of the Past!
To gain a smoother gaming and focus on a perfectly immersive experience – you get adaptive sync, AMD freesync, and NVIDIA G-sync. Where adaptive sync is the standard implemented by VESA (Video Electronics Standards Association) that allows a monitor to be synced up to a graphics card, and eliminates tearing, stuttering and juddering.
Whereas AMD Freesync is AMD’s adaptation of this standard, it reduces any visual artifacts such as input latency, tearing, and stuttering – not as helpful as adaptive sync or the latest G-sync.
G-Sync is NVIDIA’s version that does not use the adaptive sync standard; instead, a special chip is added to sync GPU and the monitor. The latest Philips 24M1N3200ZA and 24M1N3200ZA reduce system latency, increase responsiveness, aiming precision, and an updated opponent’s location.
Underrated Considerations – Mounting Options and Connectivity
Firstly, always ensure a maneuverable stand that allows movement such as panning, tilting, height adjustment, and rotational adjustment. Next, although most users suffice with a single input, it is imperative to consider future needs to avoid awkward disconnections for a games console or blu-ray players. Another underrated consideration is the low blue light mode that reduces the blue light emitted by the screen and is found in most Philips monitors. It helps to reduce eye strain if you plan to spend considerably longer gaming hours on weekends.
What Will you Choose?
Hopefully after all the information, you will be able to make a more comprehensive approach towards choosing the best gaming monitor according to your budget. Philips 4K UHD 279M1RV offers you gaming that comes to life with HDR600 and Ambiglow. Whereas, Philips 24M1N3200ZA offers a full HD gaming experience on a budget!
What immersion experience will you choose for yourself? Philips gaming monitors have got you covered!
In the fast-paced IT sector, sustainability and e-waste are becoming more and more crucial for the development of businesses. MMD, the brand license partner for Philips monitors, understands that as a manufacturer, the company holds a lot of responsibility – but also the vision to tackle this issue holistically. By setting new industry standards, MMD aims to change monitor manufacturing as a whole. We have sat down and had a chat with Stefan van Sabben, MMD’s Global CSR and Sustainability Senior Manager to speak about sustainability, research and waste reduction.
Sustainability plays an increasingly important role in modern companies. How do Philips monitors/ MMD approach this topic?
We believe that the world faces a major challenge in terms of sustainability, and in order to survive and flourish, the whole industry needs to fundamentally rethink product development and business models. The increased concern for sustainability also reflects demands from consumers, who want to receive products with longer lifespans, are repairable and recyclable, and impact the environment the least amount possible. Most importantly, the driving force for this change should come from the companies and their respective workforces themselves. And that’s how we’re approaching this subject. We’re certain that words are not enough and action is long overdue for the sector. TPV’s intrinsic motivation to play a key role in this change process is reflected in all our employees – from top management positions to the intern. We strive to be a game changer and set new industry standards. Therefore, we’re taking a holistic approach. We’re improving existing portfolios to be more environmentally friendly, from sourcing sustainable materials used to create our products to using less packaging and less plastic to reduce waste. Moreover, we’re training our product design teams to create more sustainable products from scratch. By working with partners such as Closing the Loop (CTL), PACT and ForestNation, we’re thinking about the entire product cycle, from the very beginning of the supply chain – the mining of minerals – to what happens to the product after the end of its lifespan – as it turns to e-waste. Additionally, with our active engagement of planting forests in Africa we are supporting the local people and economies, while also strengthening nature’s best method to capturing carbon emissions for generations to come and reducing our carbon debt to the planet.
Is enough being done for sustainability in global IT/consumer electronics?
It requires an enormous amount of work and a continuous effort to change the world to be more sustainable – and all players in IT and consumer electronics need to dedicate themselves more to this development. The fast pace of technology naturally results in new products being developed in the IT/CE sectors much more frequently than any other industry. This also both complicates and stimulates the need to produce more sustainable products. Therefore, all players in the market and along the value chain need to act and help create overall sustainable processes. Right now at TPV, we’ve been increasing our use of recycled plastic in our products instead of using newly-made plastics. Our packaging now includes less plastic and more paper foam. We’re also experimenting with new materials. However, in order to establish holistic systems, we are now starting at the very base of the product cycle by introducing circular thinking (reduce, reuse, refurbish, repair and recycle) into our design and production processes. This will generate more comprehensive results, such as reducing the overall energy and material consumption during manufacturing, producing longer lasting or upgradable products, using recycled and recyclable (bio-based) materials and reinventing our business models to add services to match these ambitious goals.
Electronic waste is a pressing problem. As one of the leading monitor manufacturers, how do you tackle this issue?
Computer monitors contain only pretty small circuit-boards and were therefore considered hardly worth the effort of recycling. This is why we need to change the system as a whole.
We at MMD, the brand licence partner for Philips monitors, are collaborating with Closing the Loop (CTL) and TCO Development in a pilot project to reduce monitor waste. This project aims to ensure traceability, shipping and safe recycling of the collected waste, while a research institute (Öko-Institute e. V.) will focus on environmental and social risks. With this project, a certified process will be established and it will set new sustainability standards for the monitor industry. This is one important step to making monitor production more sustainable but it’s only the beginning of the entire industry’s transformation.
To be a sustainable brand, the product design and development teams have to innovate and think outside the box to envision and create products that help consumers and companies make a positive impact. We asked Artem Khomenko, Head of Product Development MMD, the brand license partner for Philips monitors, in which way sustainability is becoming a major focus point at every step of the product development.
How does sustainability influence MMD’s portfolio and design processes?
Sustainability is one key factor to the success of our business. We believe it offers us the chance to use our skills, expertise and relationships to enhance the future for individuals, our society in general and the environment we all live in.
It is now common in the CE/IT sector to have a Cradle to Grave (C2G) product lifecycle – all products, once introduced to the market, will ultimately end up as waste. Our ultimate goal is to overthrow this one-way lifecycle and transform it to a Cradle to Cradle (C2C) process. Right now we are introducing circular thinking and sustainable ideas in our entire company strategy, resulting in new products with more sustainable designs, features and packaging.
For instance, through incorporating sustainable ideas into the design processes we created a new bezel design that requires drastically less plastic compared to previous designs. Beyond this, we focus on aspects that make working more convenient by creating more monitors that feature USB-C technology, which makes many additional cables become obsolete and thus reduces e-waste.
As part of our green goals we are setting up a roadmap to convert all packaging from EPS foam to paper cushion and to further reduce plastic materials in our packaging, such as wires, plastic bags and CD-ROMs. For B2B monitors, we are switching entirely to brown cardboard boxes with more simple prints – saving valuable resources and paving the way for improved recycling of the used materials.
Circling back to products, which features of Philips monitors help users to work efficiently and more sustainability?
In terms of sustainability, our products have been first and foremost designed with a sustainability perspective before their production. We are also proud to be one of the first display manufacturers on the market with products that received the sustainability certification TCO Certified 9.0. In fact, with 64 monitors carrying this designation, we have the largest portfolio of models on the market accredited with TCO Certified 9.0!
The most obvious examples of our commitment are our “greenest” monitors to date, the 24” 242B1G and the 27” 272B1G. These models are equipped with a new LED backlight technology. Thanks to this, they can maintain brightness and colour consistency whilst using significantly less energy, reducing energy consumption and prolonging the lifetime of the model. The 24” model only consumes 8.6 W in Eco mode and just 12.8 W typically with the EnergyStar testing method. With the new categorisation of Energy Label classes in the EU starting from 2021, the 242B1G is rated class C, which only a small subset of monitors on the market were able to achieve. Both models are of course full of the green features that we’re already implementing in the rest of our portfolio. We use zero plastics and no harmful chemicals in our packaging of our green models, and we’re increasingly expanding this “green and sustainable” thinking to our entire portfolio. For example, the majority of our business models are made from 85% post-consumer recycled plastic and the casing of our monitors isPVC/BFR free. The packaging material we use is also 100% recyclable, and soon, we will transition to packaging with only single colour and ink for all B2B models, which will further reduce costs and allow better recycling. We equip many of our B2B models with PowerSensor and LightSensor features, which use infrared sensors. The former reduces the brightness when it detects no one is sitting in front of display. While the LightSensor, in comparison, is a feature that increases the users’ comfort, adapting the brightness of the screen according to the ambient light it senses, Moreover, many monitors in our portfolio fulfil multiple regulations, including EnergyStar 8.0, EPEAT, TCO Certified Edge and TUV Eye Comfort, and more. Additionally, our monitors are mercury-free and RoHS-compliant. In most of our business models, we also have a physical power switch, so the monitor will draw zero power from the mains when turned off. Finally, by integrating many features in the monitor itself that are essential to many businesses, such as a webcam, USB hub, KVM switch etc., we reduce further e-waste by eliminating the need for additional dongles, hubs and such products.
Technology is led by never-ending strive for improvement, for assuring greater possibilities and for a better user experience. Speed is an important element when it comes to user experiences with monitors, and this can be affected by both monitors and PC. Luckily, there are some existing features that could already accelerate the actions of monitors and make the usage effortless.
Refresh rate, response times and input lag
Simply put, refresh rate is the rate at which the image is redrawn on the display. It is measured in Hz (Hertz) and the higher the refresh rate, the less exhausting it will be for your eyesight. However, the number of images and the fluidity of the game are directly related to the number of Frames Per Second (FPS) your computer will be able to deliver – which is an important information one might neglect. The latest Philips PC gaming monitor 24M1N3200ZA offers up to 165Hz to take gaming to the next level.
On the other hand, response time for monitors is the time it takes to shift from one color to another, and it can be measured in the time it takes to go from black to white, and back again to black (or, sometimes, gray-to-gray or GtG) expressed in milliseconds (ms). The fewer milliseconds response time takes, the better image and motion production. Response time is dependent on the hardware itself, and it has nothing to do with the frame rate. There are online tests that could help you understand more of the refresh rate of your hardware, and the tests can also show what is called moving picture response time (MPRT) of the monitor. MPRT is indeed different from GtG: while GtG measures how long it takes for a pixel to change color, MPRT represents how long a pixel is visible for, and a fully refreshed pixel can stay visible until the next refresh cycle, which has nothing to do with a color change. Being two different numbers and calculations, GtG and MPRT may result in different times but the closer they get to 1ms, the better.
A low MPRT eliminates smearing and motion blur, while a high refresh rate assures no screen tearing, delivering shaper, precise and smooth visuals to enhance user experience. However, a lower refresh rate and/or longer response time can cause ghosting. Ghosting on monitor is when you can identify an image that was previously displayed leaving a trail in the currently shown image with some kind of blurriness effect, causing smearing to the currently shown image. Knowing how annoying and uncomfortable this effect is on users, Philips Gaming monitors (the beforementioned 24M1N3200ZA is a perfect example) ensure a fast response time for exciting gameplay sessions.
Input lag is the amount of time that passes between sending a signal input and the time it takes for the sent input to appear on the screen. Low input lag is crucial in gaming, (a high level of input lag of the monitor in use will negatively impact the overall gaming experience) since it reduces the time delay between entering a command from your devices to monitor, particularly important to whom plays fast-paced, competitive games.
The power of syncing your monitor and your laptop
Another feature you should look for is sync technology. You might have read names like AdaptiveSync, AMD Freesync and G-Sync, but what does all this mean? Sync technology is the dynamic adjusting of a monitor’s vertical refresh rate to the frame rate of the graphics card (GPU) of the PC in use. Although specific for the gaming industry, any user can appreciate a good sync technology, which adapts the refresh rate of the monitor to match with the framerate of the video content on it, enable the device to function without any tearing and stuttering. For gamers, this alignment is crucial, as in videogames, different scenes demand varying levels of framerates. For example, the latest Philips 24M1N3200ZA, a brand new Full-HD PC gaming monitor, features Adaptive Sync for intense gameplays.
AMD Freesync utilizes this technology, leaving the framerate range in the hands of the manufacturers. NVIDIA G-Sync uses the same principle, relying on proprietary hardware that must be built into the display.
Connectivity: the power of cables
Each port and each cable have different functionalities, and the most famous port is probably USB. Over the years it progressed from USB 1.0 (sometimes called Low-Speed) that supports a transmission rate of only 1.5 Mbps, up to the USB 3.1 that transmit 10Gbps. A new standard in connectivity that can ensure a fast, complete, and easy connectivity is USB-C (whose usual protocol is either USB 3.1 or USB 3.2, up to 10Gbps). Many Philips Monitors feature USB-C connectivity, to meet the needs of professionals and corporate environments. An example is the Philips 279P1 which offers 90W power delivery and a simple laptop docking solution to view UHD images, recharge a laptop and stay connected to Ethernet with a single USB-C cable.
DisplayPort (DP) is a digital display interface used to transmit video and audio signals to a display unit, such as a monitor. This port is highly efficient and capable of transmitting up to 100 watts (which is a lot!) over a single cable.
HDMI is another pretty common cable, starting from the very first HDMI in 2002 that could transmit up to 4.95 Gbits/s, we have now welcomed the latest HDMI 2.1, which supports the 48Gbps bandwidth. HDMI 2.1 can transmit high resolutions and faster refresh rates including 8K 60Hz and 4K 120Hz for immersive viewing and smooth fast-action details. The new Philips Monitor Momentum Designed for Xbox series feature this innovation in connectivity for the most optimized console gaming possible.
Is your set-up up to date? If not – better take a loot at all the features mentioned above for your monitors and see if it reaches your expectation.