The Best Monitor Buyer’s Guide – Summer 2022
A New Monitor Is Your Best PC Upgrade!
Technology is always improving, and there’s no place that’s more evident than in the latest monitors. Our Monitor Buyer’s Guide continues to feature the best offerings, a total of ten models in all, many of them launched in the past year. This just goes to show just how fast the industry is moving.
From mainstream to 4K to ultra-wide, there’s something new and better at every pricepoint! And a quick shoutout to gamers: if you’ve been holding off on a new GPU upgrade due to high prices, use the money you’ve saved up on a new gaming monitor and get the most from your current PC today!
All the Best Picks for Summer 2022!
There’s a monitor in our guide for everyone, from home and small office users, to content creators, traders, and gamers. They include models ranging in size from 24″ to 38″, and just about every resolution you can think of, from 1920 x 1080 to four times that (3840 x 2160 or 4K). But there’s more to monitors than just size and resolution. Therefore, we’ve broken down our picks into two main categories:
- Home- and Small-Office Monitors: The first five monitors on our list fit into this category, offering prices, features, and designs for any office environment. They start at just over $100 and go up to around $1,000.
- Gaming Monitors: The last five monitors on our list are gaming-specific monitors, which at this point must feature both frame syncing technology (AMD FreeSync or Nvidia G-Sync) and high refresh rates (at minimum we recommend 144Hz, but our picks now go up to 180Hz). There’s no reason to buy a “gaming monitor” that doesn’t have both of these features today. While Acer and Asus used to dominate the gaming monitor market, there’s more competition than ever, including from the big names in the TV industry, particularly LG, plus the elite gaming brand Gigabyte. This is pushing innovation forward and bringing prices down. It’s an exciting time to be a gamer!
A Quick Primer on Frame Syncing Technology
Gamers who have been out of the market for a while may want to learn more about the concept of frame syncing. This method of displaying images on screen matches a monitor’s refresh rate to frames rendered, rather than refreshing at a locked 60Hz. Sounds simple, but it makes a big difference. By eliminating lag and screen tearing caused by too many or too few frames being displayed, frame syncing provides truly fluid images.
There are two types: Nvidia’s G-Sync, which requires additional hardware in the monitor along with a licensing fee that drives up the price, as well as AMD’s FreeSync, which uses capabilities built into the DisplayPort standard. While this led to confusion among gamers for years, Nvidia finally relented in early 2020 and unlocked FreeSync compatibility in its modern GPUs via drivers. Today, any monitor marketed as “G-Sync Compatible” actually works on either Nvidia or AMD GPUs! With that said, “G-Sync” monitors still only work on Nvidia GPUs, and we typically only recommend those to gamers using ultra-high-end Nvidia GPUs. To see our recommend video cards, definitely check out our Video Card Buyer’s Guide.
As always, links to Amazon are provided for our US readers, which will auto-convert for readers in Canada, the UK, and parts of the EU, with automatic substitutions made where necessary. If you decide to purchase any of the models we profile, please support this site by using the links we provide.
Monitors – Summer 2022
The 24-inch Small Office Monitor –
Sceptre E248W-19203R$111This monitor offers a 24″ 1920 x 1080 panel, a 75Hz refresh rate for smooth scrolling, a slim bezel for sleek looks, as well as dual HDMI inputs and a VGA input. It even has built-in speakers!
To use the built-in speakers, we recommend connecting this monitor to your PC using an HDMI cable.
The 27" Productivity Monitor –
Sceptre E275W-QPT$200As is typical of a Sceptre monitor, this one packs in a tremendous amount of features for the price. It offers a big 27″ 2560 x 1440 IPS panel, a 75Hz refresh rate for smoother scrolling than typical 60Hz monitors, a Displayport and dual HDMI 1.4 ports, plus built-in speakers. It even includes a Displayport cable in the box!
This model competes in price with many 24" 1080p monitors!
The 32-inch 4K Monitor –
LG 32UN550-W$330Looking for the best high-end content creation monitor available at a bargain price? This is it! It gives you a great view of your desktop, thanks to its massive 32″ 4K panel! It also includes a highly-adjustable stand for proper ergonomics.
LG is offering this at a price so close to typical 27" 1440p monitors that it's practically a must-buy if you have the space for it!
The 34-inch Widescreen Monitor –
Philips 346E2CUAE$420It wasn’t long ago that monitors with the specs of this model would cost twice as much, so there’s no doubt that Philips is offering tremendous value in a high-end model here. You get a huge 34″ curved VA panel with a resolution of 3440 x 1440 , 121% of the sRGB color gamut, and an adjustable stand to allow for an ergonomic position. It’s equipped with Displayport and HDMI inputs, plus a USB Type-C port to connect to laptops. The best part is that it’s protected by a 4-year advanced exchange warranty.
This professionally-styled and high-performance monitor would be at home in any small office (as long as you have the desk space for it!).
The 38-inch Ultra-Wide Productivity Monitor –
LG 38WN95C-W$1197With a massive resolution of 3840×1600 and a highly-curved 38″ panel, this ultra-wide from LG is the perfect productivity monitor. It can easily support viewing three standard-sized windows side-by-side. For a lot of use cases, that’s much better than a 4K monitor, which has the same horizontal resolution spanned across a much shorter width, making it harder to see. This model also has USB Type-C with 90W power delivery, which is perfect for connecting to a laptop for both video and charging.
Remember, this isn't just bigger than 34"-class ultra-wides, it's also higher resolution, allowing you to make use of that extra space!
The 24-inch 144Hz Gaming Monitor –
AOC 24G2$170 The Guru’s Tip
Not long ago, a monitor like this would have sold for well above $200!
The 27" 2560x1440 Gaming Monitor –
HP X27q$250 The Guru’s Tip
Most monitors in this size class are stuck at 144Hz, but HP has punched it up to 165Hz!
The 34-inch Gaming Monitor –
AOC CU34G2X$380 The Guru’s Tip
While 4K is most definitely a thing, ultra-wide gaming may in fact be superior, despite the lower resolution, due to the enhanced immersion you get from the wider viewport.
The 32" 4K 144Hz Gamer's Dream Monitor –
Gigabyte M32U$700 The Guru’s Tip
For years, 4K gaming monitors were stuck at 27", which is simply too small to take advantage of the immense resolution.
The 34-inch Gaming Monitor –
Acer Predator X34 Sbmiiphzx$1100 The Guru’s Tip
While there are bigger gaming monitors out there, none offer the fine balance of performance and size that this one does.
Total Cost: $