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Your monitor guide: 2021!

Monitors are more than just a display for your computer, they can either make or break your experience! Choosing the correct monitor can be much trickier than you might think. In this article, we will guide you through choosing the right monitor for your setup. So stay tuned until the end!

 

Purpose

Before buying a brand new monitor, you need to make clear what you’re using it for. This is really important as your use will define the specs you need to focus on. For example if you’re a photo editor, you will need the most color accurate monitor out there, but you won’t really need a high refresh rate monitor. Unlike gamers, who will need the highest refresh rate possible, but won’t really need a high resolution monitor (this is why many gamers still play on 1080p or 1440p). So when you’re clear about what you’ll use the monitor for, continue reading to find out what specs to focus on.

 

Resolution confusion!

We all probably know that the higher the resolution, the better. And we all probably know that 4K is better than 1080p. But there is one thing many people aren’t aware of: pixel density! Have you ever wondered why a HD video doesn’t look good on your monitor, but looks good on your phone. This is all because of pixel density. Density basically means how compact something is, so when the density is higher, things are more compact and closer together. So this explains why a HD video looks better on your phone than monitor, it’s because the same number of pixels are cramped in a smaller from factor.

Pixel Density

(Higher ppi = Better Image Quality)

So if you’re buying a monitor that is 27 inches or more, 1440p or higher would be ideal, as 1080p will give you a low pixel density that results in bad image quality. However, this shouldn’t be a concern if you’re getting a smaller screen that’s 24 inches or lower.

 

Refresh rate for em’ gamers

To start things off, it’s 2021…and you shouldn’t really get anything below 75Hz, whether you’re a gamer or not! If you’re a gamer though, you can benefit from a little more refresh rate! The famous myth is that the more the better, but that’s not true. You really shouldn’t go above 240hz, 360hz is just absurd as we humans can’t even perceive this much of fps. 144hz, 165hz, and 240hz are all good options (depending on your budget obviously).

Refresh rate comparison

One very important thing to note is, MAKE SURE YOUR PC IS POWERFUL ENOUGH! I’ve seen people with GTX 1050s buying high resolution 144hz monitors! The public excuse for this is “Future Proofing”, but trust me that tech moves fast, and the standards rapidly change. So if your PC can’t run games on 144hz, then there is no point getting one. It’s wiser to save your money and invest it in a new graphics card!

 

IPS vs TN vs VA

There are quite a few differences between the 3 panels, so it’s up to what your priorities are.

IPS panels

IPS panels have the best color reproduction out of the 3 panels, as well as having very good viewing angles. IPS panels have way better black reproduction than TN panels, but still worse than VA panel’s black reproduction. Some IPS monitors may suffer from “Backlight bleeding”, where the backlight is “bleeding” onto the monitor, causing grey blacks. However, this is a very rare phenomenon, but make sure to read the reviews before buying a monitor just in case.

Backlight bleed (Exmaple of backlight bleeding)

TN panels

TN panels have very high refresh rates with low response times, and a great price as well!    However, they have the worst color reproduction and viewing angles out of the 3 panels. TN panels will be alright for gamers, but not content creators.

VA panels

VA panels have excellent color reproduction, but still worse than IPS panels. They also have very high contrast ratios, meaning that they have very deep blacks, that are ideal for watching movies. However, VA panels have high response times compared with other panels, as well as relatively bad viewing angles. VA panels will be excellent for general use, not for gaming though!

 

Ports

Now a days there are certain ports that are a necessity, like the HDMI or Display port. However, some high-end monitors will offer ports like: Thunderbolt, USB hub, audio jack, etc. Monitor ports are quite simple, the more you pay, the more you get. It just depending on what devices you are planning to connect to it.

Monitor ports

 

Budget

There are hundreds of monitor options out there, but hopefully this article has helped you filter out what you don’t need, and focus on what you really need! And also, don’t forget to read the customer reviews!

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