Best G-Sync Monitors: top overall, budget and 4K picks
In this article, we will delve into the best G-Sync monitors, a must-have feature for gamers who demand seamless synchronization between their monitor’s refresh rate and their NVIDIA graphics card.
Whether you’re a competitive gamer looking to gain an edge or simply seeking the most immersive gaming experience, a G-Sync gaming monitor can make a world of difference. We’ll explore models that cater to various preferences, from ultra-wide screens to 4K resolution, all equipped with the power of G-Sync to transform your gameplay.
Products at a Glance
How we picked the best G-Sync monitors
Choosing the best G-Sync monitor is more than a matter of comparing specs; it’s about finding the right fit for your gaming PC habits and preferences. We look for monitors that deliver on the promise of G-Sync’s smooth gaming experience while also offering excellent picture quality, a robust build, and thoughtful design.
Whether you’re gearing up for eSports or settling in for immersive single-player narratives, our selections are tailored to enhance your gaming sessions and provide you with the competitive edge or cinematic grandeur you’re seeking.
Best G-Sync Monitors: top overall, budget and 4K picks
- Superior image quality with OLED technology.
- High refresh rate for smooth gaming.
- G-Sync Ultimate for seamless visuals.
- Premium price point.
- OLED burn-in could be a concern over time.
- Heavier than some comparable monitors.
The Alienware 34 QD-OLED (AW3423DW) represents the pinnacle of immersive gaming experiences as our Editor’s Choice. This monitor boasts a 34-inch Quantum Dot OLED panel that delivers exceptional color accuracy, deep blacks, and a wide color spectrum, making it a premium choice for gamers and creative professionals alike.
With NVIDIA G-Sync Ultimate, users are treated to a tear-free and ultra-responsive gameplay experience that is as stunning visually as it is smooth in performance.
The AW3423DW not only excels in display technology but also in design and build quality. Its 1800R curvature draws you into the action, offering a wrap-around view that’s both comfortable and captivating for extended gaming sessions. The monitor’s response time is virtually instantaneous, and with a refresh rate of up to 175Hz, it’s well-suited for fast-paced action.
- Affordable with great value.
- G-Sync Compatible for smooth gameplay.
- Solid refresh rate and quick response time.
- VA panel offers slightly less color accuracy than IPS.
- Limited adjustability.
The Dell S2722DGM stands as the best budget option for those seeking G-Sync functionality without the high-end price tag. This 27-inch monitor offers a crisp 1440p QHD resolution that hits the sweet spot for high-definition gaming. With a curvature of 1500R, it provides an immersive viewing experience that’s gentle on the eyes, making it suitable for long gaming marathons.
This monitor’s 165Hz refresh rate and 2ms response time make it a solid performer for most gaming scenarios. While it doesn’t have the full G-Sync module, its G-Sync Compatible certification ensures you’ll still enjoy smooth and synchronized gameplay on a budget.
For gamers looking to upgrade their gaming experience without spending a fortune, the Dell S2722DGM is an excellent choice. It balances cost with performance, delivering many of the benefits of more expensive G-Sync monitors in a more accessible package.
- 4K resolution with high refresh rate.
- G-Sync Ultimate for seamless gameplay.
- Top-notch HDR with Mini-LED panel.
- Premium price point.
- No HDMI 2.1 port.
- Some haloing in high-contrast scenes.
The Asus ROG Swift PG32UQX steps into the arena as the Best 4K monitor, boasting a 32-inch IPS panel that shines with its 3840 x 2160 resolution and a refresh rate of 144Hz. This monitor takes 4K gaming to a whole new level with G-Sync Ultimate, ensuring the most precise synchronization for gameplay that is silky smooth, and incredibly detailed.
What sets the PG32UQX apart is its Mini-LED technology, which delivers an exceptional picture and color quality that’s hard to beat. With 1152 LED dimming zones, the monitor achieves impressive HDR performance, hitting the peak of HDR 1400 certification.
This translates to visuals that are vibrant, with deep blacks and bright highlights, providing a contrast ratio that breathes life into every scene. It’s the kind of monitor that not only appeals to gamers but also to professional content creators who demand accurate color representation for their work.
- Immersive curved display.
- High refresh rate for smooth action.
- Ideal for 1440p resolution for gaming.
- Curvature may not suit all users.
- G-Sync compatibility, not full G-Sync.
- Limited adjustability options.
The ASRock Phantom PG34WQ15R2B is heralded as the Best for 1440p, featuring a 34-inch curved screen that’s perfect for an immersive gaming experience. This monitor’s 3440×1440 resolution strikes a perfect balance between high definition and performance, giving users the clarity they need without the taxing demand of a 4K display.
This G-Sync-compatible monitor is designed for gamers who want to dive deep into their games with a wide field of view. The curvature of the screen brings a sense of depth to your gaming sessions, enhancing realism and engagement. Its rapid response time ensures that you can react as quickly in-game as you do in real life, giving you a competitive edge.
For gamers looking to enhance their 1440p gaming sessions, the ASRock Phantom PG34WQ15R2B is an excellent choice. It offers a high refresh rate and G-Sync compatibility, wrapped in a sleek, curved design that’s both aesthetically pleasing and functionally immersive.
Features to look for in a G-Sync Monitor
If you are a heavy gamer, then a decent monitor is necessary for less lag, faster response times, and better graphical fidelity. There are many monitors on the market, so it is important to look for the following features before buying.
When you’re in the market for the best G-Sync monitors, several features and considerations come into play. Foremost, the monitor’s refresh rate is a critical factor – higher rates result in smoother imagery, which is crucial in fast-paced gaming scenarios. Panel technology also matters; IPS panels provide excellent color accuracy and viewing angles, while TN panels might offer faster response times and speedier frame rates, which could be decisive for competitive gaming.
Size and resolution are equally important, with larger screens offering more immersive experiences and higher resolutions delivering crisper images. Additionally, the quality of the monitor’s build, color fidelity, brightness, and contrast ratio can greatly affect the display’s overall quality and your gaming experience.
Why Get A G-Sync Monitor?
While G-Sync monitors tend to be more expensive than their regular counterparts, they make up for their price with, well, G-Sync… Of course, this is assuming you are using an Nvidia GPU, if you aren’t then you won’t get any use from G-Sync.
Normally, if your GPU outperforms your monitor, it will send frames to it at a higher rate than the monitor can display, which causes screen tearing, (where 2 frames are displayed at the same time).
G-Sync eliminates this. In layperson’s terms, within each G-Sync monitor, there is a chip that stores frames before sending them to the monitor. Then the software uses these frames to sync up your graphics card with your monitor, making games appear much smoother.
A monitor’s resolution tells you how many pixels wide and tall it is. In general, the higher the resolution, the more pixels per unit area there are and the better your picture quality is. Most monitors nowadays run at least in HD (1920 x 1080). However, many monitors allow for 2k/QHD (2560 x 1440) and 4K/UHD (3840 x 2160) resolutions. A monitor with a good resolution can be a great help keeping your bearings while in a match, as it lets all elements on the screen pop and be clearly defined.
If you pick a monitor with a high resolution, make sure you have a powerful enough GPU to handle it. Most mid-range gaming rigs nowadays can maintain at least 30fps at 2k/QHD resolutions or even potentially higher depending on other settings. However, only the more powerful high-end gaming rigs can push over 30fps on 4K/UHD resolution.
PPI stands for pixels per inch, which is pretty self explanatory. In general, the higher the PPI the better, as that results in a sharper, clearer image. The amount of pixels per inch is based on a monitor’s resolution as well as its overall size. Higher resolution and lower size correlates to higher PPI.
Another thing to take into consideration when looking at PPI is the distance you’ll be sitting from the monitor. The closer you are to the monitor, the higher the pixel density you’ll need in order to not see individual pixels. On the other hand, if you sit far away, you won’t need a very high PPI to see a sharp image.
The refresh rate of a monitor refers to how many times per second the monitor refreshes the image on the screen. Every moment you are playing a game, visuals on the screen are being refreshed. The faster the refresh rate, the smoother the picture is and the less screen tearing occurs during movement.
Most standard computer monitors have a refresh rate of at least 60Hz meaning that they can update the display up to 60 times per second. While this is pretty quick, it is sometimes not fast enough for dynamic applications, such as video games. Hardcore gaming is assisted by a faster refresh rate for smoother visuals and faster response times. Most gaming-dedicated monitors have a refresh rate double that of normal monitors, so around 120Hz-144Hz. Coupled with a good resolution, a high refresh rate contributes to better graphical fidelity and smoother gameplay.
Once again, if you get a monitor with a very high refresh rate you need to make sure you have a GPU that can take full advantage of it. Make sure your graphics card can run the games you want at the settings you desire.
The response time of your monitor refers to how quickly each pixel changes colors. In general, response times are measured from going from black to white to black again. Response time is not to be confused with the refresh rate. The refresh rate is how many times per second the monitor displays a new image. Higher refresh rates are desirable, while lower response times are better.
Normally, monitor response times are not a big factor for most regular computer applications. Surfing the web, sending emails, watching videos, editing photos, and downloading files are not affected too greatly by response times.
The main exception is when gaming. For gamers, every millisecond counts. The difference between landing a hit or getting crushed by your opponent is on the order of a few milliseconds. That is why gaming monitors typically have very quick response times; somewhere in the area of 1-5ms. If you play a lot of games that require ultra-precise timing like Overwatch, Fortnite, or Rocket League, then look for a monitor with very low response times.
Another important feature is the panel type. The panel type refers to the specific configuration of LCD cells in your monitor and affects how your monitor renders images and colors. Nowadays, there are 3 major kinds of panel types you will find in about 99% of gaming monitors.
- TN (Twisted Nematic). TN panels are generally the least expensive and the quickest but are the lowest quality kind of LCD panels. TN panels normally have low response times and higher refresh rates but do not have impressive color range or viewing angles. As such, they are great for games that require quick movements and timing (ie competitive games) but not so much for games that have to render a lot of detail and color.
- VA (Vertical Alignment). VA panels are a type of LED display. VA panels arrange their liquid crystals in such a way that they appear the same color from multiple angles. They also use special polymer stabilizers to lessen the amount of power that monitor uses. In general, VA panels have slower response times and average refresh rates. However, they have probably the best contrast and depth of field. They also occupy a nice middle ground in pricing, with some lower end models costing as much as TN panels.
- IPS (In-Plane Switching). IPS panels are probably the most versatile among the common types of monitors. IPS panels are known for producing the best colors and viewing angles. They typically have lower refresh rates and higher response times than either TN or VA panels, yet they balance this shortcoming with the high-quality picture. IPS can have higher refresh rates but it costs significantly more than an equivalent TN panel; however, they cap out at around 4ms response times.
Many gaming monitors today come pre-equipped with adaptive sync protocols. Sometimes when gaming, screen tearing occurs because the monitor’s frame rate does not match its refresh rate. In other words, screen tearing and stuttering are the result of the graphics card rendering images faster than the monitor can keep up.
Adaptive sync lessens screen tearing and stuttering by matching the monitor’s display rate to your graphics card rendering rate. There are two major kinds of adaptive sync out there: AMD FreeSync and NVIDIA G-Sync.
AMD FreeSync adds little to no extra cost to the monitor but is mostly only compatible with AMD brand GPUs (although there are some exceptions). NVIDIA G-Sync typically bumps the prices up by about $100-$150 and only works with NVIDIA GPUs.
For the most part, you will determine what monitor you will get based on your GPU. AMD FreeSync is pretty good, most often found on cheaper monitors, and since some of the best value GPUs are AMD, it can be significantly cheaper in some situations to go that route.
However, G-Sync is a little better. NVIDIA is known for its incredibly high-quality graphics technologies and offers frequent software updates to make their G-Sync faster and compatible with newly released games. Whether this is potentially worth adding a hundred or more dollars to your build is completely up to you.
Is G-Sync still better than FreeSync?
Yes, G-Sync generally provides a more robust quality than FreeSync, particularly at low refresh rates. NVIDIA’s G-Sync technology incorporates a hardware module to control the refresh rate of the display, which syncs with the GPU’s output for a consistently smooth experience. This hardware control allows G-Sync monitors to double the refresh rate when it dips below a certain threshold, effectively combating screen tearing.
The Alienware 34 QD-OLED (AW3423DW) takes the crown as our Editor’s Choice. This monitor is a testament to the incredible feats of display technology, offering a quantum leap in color accuracy and immersion with its OLED panel. The combination of G-Sync Ultimate and a 175Hz refresh rate ensures that every frame is as smooth as the last.
For those who are budget-conscious yet still long for the benefits of G-Sync, the Dell S2722DGM provides a stellar balance between cost and quality. If 4K is your battleground, the Asus ROG Swift PG32UQX with its Mini-LED panel sets the standard for ultra-high-definition gaming. And for enthusiasts seeking the sweet spot in 1440p gaming, the ASRock Phantom PG34WQ15R2B offers a curved, expansive vista that’s hard to beat.