Monitor Buying Guide For Working And Entertainment
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Monitor Buying Guide For Working And Entertainment

|Dec 13, 2022

Do you want to buy a new monitor but are unsure about how to pick the best one? You’ve come to the right place. We’ve come up with a monitor buying guide that will help you find the best monitor according to your needs and preferences.

Before we start, it’s worth noting that buying a PC monitor has gotten less complicated in the modern day. As technology advances, the vast majority of manufacturers have started including better features in most of their models. Hence, now you can find monitors with nice color accuracy and other essential features like brightness, contrast, and even refresh rate for a relatively affordable price.

Either way, there are tons of other features you should take into account before buying a monitor. Let’s see the essential elements of a computer monitor in this PC monitor buying guide. You may also want to explore a few options for a monitor wall mount.

Computer Monitor Buying Guide

1.  What is the main purpose of the monitor?

The first step is to determine the primary use of your new display. Will you use it for playing? Or perhaps for gaming? A combination of both? The answer to these questions will determine some of the features you should take into consideration while buying.

For instance, if you want to use the monitor for gaming, you should look for a higher or faster refresh rate along with a low response time. On the other hand, if you’re a design professional, you should look for a monitor with good color accuracy.

Once you determine what you will use the monitor for, it’ll be easier for you to make a list of the possible options that could be compatible with your vision.

What is the main purpose of the monitor?

2.  Monitor types: which one is best for you?

You can find different options depending on the LCD panel technology it has. There are four main groups at the moment:

  • In-Plane Switching (IPS): IPS monitors are the current standard. It provides excellent color and brightness performance, although that depends on the model. While the contrast may not be as good as in other monitor types, the good news is that it compensates for the lack of such a feature with other elements, such as high refresh rates or lower response times.
  • Vertical Alignment (VA): Like IPS monitors, VA screens are excellent for an ergonomic workspace or a gaming setup. The brightness is excellent, and the contrast ratio shows certain improvements compared to IPS options, which results in better image quality most of the time.
  • Twisted Nematic (TN): TN technology is quite cheap. While it has certain advantages, such as better motion clarity, it may not have the best color performance. It can be a good option for gamers, though.
  • Organic Light Emitting Diode (OLED): OLED monitors have become quite popular in recent years. It doesn't use LCD technology. It uses organic pixel technology that emits its own light. It has wonderful contrast and color performance and is capable of providing the best motion clarity along with breathtaking viewing angles. The main disadvantage is that it is extremely expensive for computer monitors.

Between all of these options, we can say that OLED monitors are a wise choice. That would be true if the technology wasn't so limited and it wasn't so expensive. An IPS monitor can be the best choice for most people, but VA panel monitors are also worth a shot if you would like better image quality when it comes to watching audiovisual media.

Monitor types: which one is best for you?

3.  What is the best resolution?

The next stop is the resolution you'd like. It is tied to image quality because it defines the number of pixels a monitor has in a width-by-height format. For instance, the current standards are Full HD or HD monitors with a resolution of 1920p x 1080p. However, you can also find other options with sharper images, such as Quad HD (QHD, 2560p x 1440p), Ultra HD (UHD, 3840p x 2160p), and 4K or 5K.

It can be tempting to get monitors with a higher resolution, but you should think about your computer’s graphics card. Monitors with a higher resolution have higher exigencies when it comes to the capabilities of a PC’s GPU. Hence, not all computers can use a 4K or 5K monitor.

If you intend to use your monitor for working, perhaps a Full HD or HD monitor can be good for you. A Quad HD monitor can provide similar performance and may also be good for gaming, as these displays don't need overly-expensive graphic cards to function.

What is the best resolution? - monitor buying guide

4.  What would be the ideal refresh rate?

The next two elements include useful information for those looking for a gaming monitor buying guide.

Refresh rate is a term used to describe how long the monitor takes to update the display with new information. It is measured in hertz (Hz), and thus, higher numbers are usually better and produce better image quality.

If you use this monitor for general purposes, you don't need to worry about it. However, if you'll use it for gaming, you should look for a monitor with a minimum of 75 Hz refresh rate. Gaming monitors typically offer a refresh rate of around 120 Hz.

5.  What should you look for in response times?

Like refresh rates, response times don't hold much importance if you're a general user or will use it for work-related activities. However, if you'll use the monitor for gaming, you should look for a monitor with the lowest response time possible. A good gaming monitor has around 0.5ms response time, although it's not rare to see displays with a response time of up to 0.5ms, depending on the price.


Other Aspects to Consider

We’ve covered most of the essential aspects you should take into account while buying a new monitor in this home office monitor buying guide. Besides these elements, you should also consider getting a monitor arm for desk or a monitor stand for desk to place your new display comfortably on your office desk. It’ll help you make your setup more ergonomic and comfortable for long-term use.

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