The Monitor Buying Guide - What You Need to Know! | The Tech Chap

hey guys I'm Tom the tech chap and if

you're thinking about buying a new

monitor then choosing the right one can

be pretty overwhelming there's so many

different things to consider sighs

where's illusion panel type refresh

rates g-sync freesync ports HDR it's a

lot but don't worry I'm going to talk

you through everything you need to know

so monitors can be anything from 20 up

to 49 inches in size but the two most

common sizes for new displays are 24

inches and 27 inches and they provide a

good amount of screen space for

productivity and gaming as either a main

or even a secondary monitor for your

laptop and they also sue a variety of

budgets you can find decent 24 inch

monitors for around a hundred pounds 27

inch monitors offer an increase in

screen space and are more popular with

gamers and power users and they start

from a little over 200 pounds

so that's size but then we have

resolution which refers to the number of

horizontal pixels and vertical pixels on

a screen the higher the number the

sharper the image most 24 inch monitors

will have a resolution of 1920

horizontal pixels by 1080 vertical

pixels that's also known as Full HD some

27 inch monitors will have the same

resolution but because the screen is

bigger the number of pixels is spread

out over a larger area which means the

image can appear softer and fuzzier the

solution to this is choose a higher

resolution such as 2560 by 1440 or quad

HD which is common on more expensive

27-inch models and gives a sharper

overall image next up our 4k screens

these have a 3840 by 2160 resolution so

the image is very sharp and detailed and

they're particularly good for graphic

designers or creative professionals they

are of course more expensive than full

or quad HD monitors and I'll kind of

overkill for most users

I mean gaming in 4k requires a seriously

beefy PC unless you have a high-end

graphics card like ER and video RTX 2080

or better then you probably won't be

able to use high settings in games and

still get a consistent 60 FPS or above

you'll also need to have the right

display ports on your computer but we'll

come back to that in a minute so for

most gamers I'd recommend a good full HD

or quad HD panel unless you're after the

sharpest possible image I have a

4k capable console you're looking to use

with the screen and even then I'd

suggest getting a larger 32 inch model

to get the most benefit out of 4k and it

can be difficult to see all that fine

detail on smaller 27-inch screens now if

you are looking to edit 4k content I

mean I shoot these videos in 4k then you

may actually want to consider a 5k

monitor which boosts the pixel count by

about a third and it allows you to

display the full 4k content on the

screen and still have a few pixels left

over for the editing software toolbars

around the edge and if that's not enough

then we also have 8k TVs and monitors

which are on the way but the cost and

the lack of availability means I'm going

to leave them to one side for now and

finally in terms of screen sizes we have

ultra wide or even super ultra wide now

most monitors and TVs have a 16 by 9

aspect ratio whereas ultra lights like

this have a 21 by 9 aspect which makes

them around 30% wider

super ultra wide take this a step

further with a 32 by 9 aspect ratio now

both types are great if you need extra

screen space for multiple programs or

loads of browser tabs open at the same

time or if you want a wider more

immersive gaming experience these

screens tend to be curved to wrap around

you a little bit and make sure that the

corners of the screen aren't too far

away from your eyes now personally I use

an ultra wide every single day for

working and gaming and they are my

favorite type of monitor to use but then

super authorized have the advantage of

being the equivalent of 2 Full HD or to

quality panels side-by-side with exactly

double the number of horizontal pixels

which is very useful if you want to

display two programs or images or videos

in their native resolution on each half

of the screen and they're also the

natural replacement for existing two

screen setups but without that horrible

bezel in the middle and of course with

fewer cables you can also get some great

gaming focused ultra lights but these

tend to be quite expensive and again

with the high resolution you'll need a

pretty powerful PC to get decent frame

rates in modern games for most people

then and gamers who want an ultra wide I

would go with either a 29 inch 2560 by

1080 or a 34 inch 34 40 by 40 40 model

and if you are a professional who would

benefit from that extra screen space

then a 43 or 49 inch

super ultra white will be your best

option just a quick thought on the

actual design of the monitor now most

will be pretty boring to look at but

more expensive models can look pretty

nice with brushed effect materials and

metal stands like this one it is worth

considering how will actually look on

your desk

I mean gaming monitors range from subtle

to definitely not so subtle and if you

want a curved ultra wide that bear in

mind it won't sit flush against a wall

more important though is the stand some

monitors offer height and tilt and

rotational adjustments whereas others

offer only limited movement so if you do

think you'll be making some adjustments

then make sure you check the specs of

the monitor and also if you're playing

to wall mount it then make sure that it

is visa mount compatible okay so the

next most important thing to consider is

the screen panel type this is pretty

important as it will determine how good

the image looks there are four main

types TN IPS VA and OLED although this

is still very rare with the first two

being the most common now TN panels tend

to be the most affordable but at the

expense of image quality TNS offer fast

response times high refresh rates up to

240 Hertz

although IPS monitors are catching up

and minimal input lag don't worry I'll

explain those terms in a minute but that

means like they're great for fast-paced

gaming now on the downside they do have

the poorest contrast the lowest color

accuracy and the viewing angles aren't

very good so if you're not certain time

lately in front of your screen the color

shift and the contrast suffers then we

have IPS screens which are the next most

popular after TN and they provide the

best overall quality with improved

brightness contrast more accurate colors

and far better viewing angles than TM

some manufacturers have their own

version of IPS Samsung calls theirs pls

which they claim has some advantages but

for our purposes I'm going to bomb them

all into the same IPS category so IPS

screens are best for design photo and

video professionals who need image

accuracy and quality however IPS powells

tend to be a little more expensive and

generally but not always they have

higher input lag but they can also

suffer from something called IPS glow

where the backlight of the actual screen

bleeds into the edges now moving on to

VA panels and these

quite go compromise between TN and IPS

but there are fewer models available now

these tend to have better colors

contrast and view angles than TN but not

quite as good as IPS although they do

offer higher potential refresh rates

improve contrast and potentially much

higher brightness than IPS which is why

most HDR monitors do use VA panels we'll

get into that in a second however they

can suffer from color distortion and

contrast loss when viewed from off angle

and also the response time can be a bit

higher so with fast motion competitive

games you can see some slight blurring

or ghosting the file type is OLED which

is a gray technology with the best

contrast ratios great response times and

higher color accuracy but that said they

can suffer from temporary or even

permanent image retention if the

pictures left on like this for an

extended period of time and also they're

extremely expensive and also very rare

right now so I wouldn't recommend one

for the time being okay that is quite a

lot to take in so which one should you


well TN is a good option if you're on a

strict budget and it's fine but if you

want an all-purpose monitor for work for

watching videos or even a little gaming

I would definitely recommend spending a

bit more on IPS or AV a panel as you're

getting a much better image but if you

are a gamer then a good IPS preferably

with a high refresh rate would be best

and it'll have nearly as low input lag

in response times as a TN and also

avoids the blowing you can get with VA

if you are a serious competitive gamer

though then you should choose a model

with a very high refresh rate and also

probably a TN to get the lowest possible

response times but if you're a

professional that deals in graphical

work then you should definitely go for a

good quality IPS for the best image

quality and highest color accuracy

so we've already kind of touched on

refresh rates but what does it actually

mean well

the refresh rate of a MARTA is how many

times the screen image is updated every

second the higher the number the

smoother the on screen motion looks

refresh rates are measured in hertz and

most monitors including this one here

will refresh 60 times per second so it's

60 Hertz and that's fine but if you're a

gamer you'll prefer 100 120 134 even 240

Hertz refresh rate monitors from

much smoother and faster gaming

experience but of course a high refresh

rate usually also means higher cost and

also remember that you'll only see the

benefit of it if your PC has enough

grunt to render all those frames every

second if you've only got a fairly

average PC you need getting like 80 or

90 frames per second then you're not

going to fully take advantage of that

high refresh unless of course you're

going to drop your graphics settings so

I think we fresh rates are fairly

straightforward but then we move on to

adaptive sync and this it gets a little

tricky so for the smoothest possible

gaming experience try to get a monitor

that supports variable refresh rates or

adaptive sync because this eliminates

was known as screen tearing so this has

the effect of where part of the screen

displays one frame and another part

that's slightly offset and is especially

obvious at lower frame rates below 60fps

and it can be pre distracting so an

adaptive sync screen can synchronize its

refresh rate to the exact number of

frames coming from your graphics card

which means cleaner smoother motion and

it also avoids the compromises of older

workers like vsync which would usually

increase input lag and sometimes result

in stuttering so there are three main

types and videos g-sync

aim DS free sync 1 and facing 2 which

are similar to the third type visas open

adaptive sync standard now g-sync

martyr's can cost several hundred pounds

more and they have a custom controller

chip that's built in and requires an

Nvidia graphics card for that variable

refresh rate whereas free sync 1 or 2 or

adaptive sync monitors don't have a chip

so you can use any compatible aim D or

Nvidia graphics card so Nvidia g-sync

comes in a few different flavors we have

regular G sync which guarantees a

certain level of performance then we

have juicing ultimate which adds HDR and

extra brightness and also allows for

variable refresh at very high refresh

rates and finally we have G's

incompatible which our aim deep-freezing

2 monitors which meet certain

performance criteria most other free

sync 1 & 2 monitors that are listed as

compatible will likely work with G sync

but just how well they work will have to

be assessed on a case-by-case basis

although free sync 2 monitors will

probably work better and as features

like HDR lower latency and it also

removes a

frame limit for which it works so my

advice would be to choose a free sink to

monitor as it's cheaper it works well

with AMD graphics cards and will likely

be nearly as good as a regular g-sync

panel but not cost anything extra still

with me that was quite a lot to take in

but we've got a few more topics that I

do want to cover so next up we have

response times and input lag now

sometimes these are confused as the same

thing but they are both important in

their own way

now response time is how quickly a pixel

can change what it's displaying usually

from one shade of grey to another or

greater gray response and it's measured

in milliseconds now a higher response

time can result in more motion blur

which can be seen as ghosting those

trails that follow fast-moving objects

in games and videos and can give you a

bit of a smelly image so TN panels offer

the fastest response time sometimes as

low as one millisecond and ideal for

competitive gaming fast paced gaming IPS

pals are a bit slower usually around 5

milliseconds but that's fine for most

people and he probably wouldn't really

notice the difference then we have VA

now some premium VA pals can have very

fast response times but generally these

are the slowest and the most likely to

suffer from blurring now input lag on

the other hand is not usually advertised

by the manufacturer but it is also worth

checking especially if you're a gamer

and they refers to the time between when

the graphics card outputs an image

signal and then when it's actually

displayed on the screen so for example

the time between clicking the mouse

button and the gun firing in your game

so again like response times the less

time this takes the better response time

and input like are often measured as a

combined value and so anything under

around 50 milliseconds combined is

pretty reasonable although under 11 is

ideal next up we have high dynamic range

or HDR enabled monitors and these can

look awesome they have a greater

contrast range between the brightest and

the darkest parts of an image and a

wider color range so games and programs

that are optimized for HDR can look

really impressive but unfortunately not

all HDR is made equal and an important

measurement is the maxim

brightness level of Vermonter we measure

them in nits and a highest score is

better so we have the display HDR

standard which lists martyrs under three

tiers we have HDR 400 which gives you

400 minutes of brightness and this is

kind of considered to be the baseline

then you have HDR 600 and premium HDR

1000 4000 its but you can also find

panels that are just listed as HDR 10

which refers to the 10-bit color depth

but they can have varying degrees of

brightness it's difficult many people

maintain that you don't get true HDR

unless you have 1000 nits and 10-bit

color depth anything less is fake well

be prepared to pay a lot of money if you

want both of those in a PC monitor now

generally VA panels offer the best HDR

and some of the higher-end models will

actually use quantum dot filters like

Samsung's TVs to increase the brightness

further OLED monitors are also great for

HDR but give them their cost and the

scarcity I can't really recommend them

right now so getting a good HDR panel

will make most sense if you're planning

on watching loads of HDR content on

other amazon prime or Netflix or maybe

you're going to plug in your Xbox or

Playstation your HDR enabled console or

even if you're gonna play some PC games

but the problem with PC games is HDR

support is patchy at best even if it is

getting better some games have

implemented what is known as fake HDR

where the dynamic range isn't really

improved at all but a filter is added to

basically give that impression to

accentuate the brightest areas on the

screen and of course also increase color

saturation but the type and the quality

of HDR will depend on how the game has

been developed so throughout this video

I've been saying how TN IPs and VA all

offered slightly different color

accuracies and this can be measured

against a range of color gamut such as

srgb Adobe RGB and also DCI p3 and the

closer the monitor is to matching a

hundred percent of that color gamut the

more color accurate it is and what can

influence that is the type of panel used

and also the color depth is at 6 bit

8-bit or 10 bit pretty much everyone

should avoid 6 bit a bit is fine for

almost everyone but if you are a

professional color calibrator or Foe

to answer then you may want to look for

a 10-bit panel although you will pay

more for that but also be careful

because a lot of technical specs will

suggest a Martha is timber but actually

it's only 8-bit and uses a technological

FRC to artificially simulate that extra

color so it's not true native timber

although it will be a bit of an

improvement and that bit color depth

indicates how many shades of color and

want I can display but then how accurate

that is as I say we test against things

like srgb and Adobe RGB and generally

for the average user I would look for

anything that's over 90% srgb and over

70% Adobe RGB although of course the

higher the percentage the more accurate

it will be the vast majority of new

monitors will use an HDMI 2.0

DisplayPort 1.2 or 1.4 or USB type-c as

their main connector now many will have

both HDMI and DisplayPort connections

with more expensive and newer models

also offering type C in some cases

you'll find mini HDMI and mini

DisplayPort switch each obviously as it

says in the ten years a small connector

but otherwise they are the same you will

need to check your graphics card or your

laptop ports to see which connection

type to use if like me you're outputting

from your graphics card then generally I

would recommend using DisplayPort 1.2

supports high refresh rates and 4k at 60

Hertz and actually DisplayPort 1.4

supports up to 8 K and also we do have

to consider hdmi 2.1 which is coming

soon and it's going to offer even more

bandwidth and higher resolutions and

higher frame rates but right now that is

very very rare so I'll probably cover

that in my next video

but then we also do have USB C pause

which you'll find on newer graphics

cards and laptops some type-c ports are

also Thunderbolt 3 enabled which is an

even higher bandwidth technology and

means you can output to multiple high

resolution displays ok that was a lot to

take in and fair play if you've managed

to stick with me this long but the big

question is what should you buy if you

want a decent home and office monitor

that doesn't break the bank go for a 22

or 24 inch 1080p IPS or VA panel and if

you can't stretch your budget a little

bit go for a 27-inch 1440p

now if you're a creative professional

working with photos video design work

than a good-quality 27-inch 1440p IPS or

if your budget allows maybe even a 32

inch 4k IPS will be your best bet and

aim for ones with the highest color

accuracy most good reviewers will

include that in their review but if you

need a highly productivity focused

monitor with loads of screen space thank

consider a 29 or 34 inch ultra wide or

maybe even a larger 43 or 49 inch super

ultra wide but if gaming is a priority

for you then do try to get a model with

a higher refresh rate anything above 60

Hertz and also if you can try to get one

with an adaptive sync technology such as

free sync - or do you think if it's not

too much more money and that's it

congratulations you now know more about

monitors than a normal person should and

as you can probably tell I'm starting to

lose my voice as this was quite a long

video and don't forget to check my

recommended monitors in the description

below so I really hope you found this

video useful if you did hit that like

and subscribe button down there

somewhere and I'll see you guys next

time right here on the texture