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Ready to upgrade? These are the best 4K gaming monitors to consider.

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Breaking down the best 4K gaming monitors we’ve tested. (Image credit: Shutterstock / Krivosheev Vitaly)

With great pixels comes great image quality. So it’s not surprising when PC gamers drool over monitors with 4K resolution. A panel packing 8.3 million pixels (3840 x 2160) makes your favorite games look incredibly sharp and realistic. In addition to being the highest resolution you can get in a good gaming monitor these days, going 4K also offers the ability to expand past 20-inch screens. With that loaded pixel army, you can stretch your screen size well past 30 inches without having pixels so big that you can see them.

But that image quality comes at a steep price. Anyone who’s shopped for a 4k monitor before knows they’re not cheap. Yes, 4K is about high-res gaming, but you’re still going to want solid gaming specs, like a 60Hz-plus refresh rate, low response time and your choice of Adaptive-Sync (Nvidia G-Sync or AMD FreeSync, depending on your system’s graphics card). And you can’t forget the cost of the decently beefy graphics card you’ll require to game properly in 4K.

Best 4K gaming monitors at a glance:

1. Acer Nitro XV273K
2. Acer Predator XB273K
3. Asus TUF Gaming VG289Q
4. Asus ROG Swift PG27UQ
5. Acer Predator X27

Quick Shopping Tips

When seeking the best 4K gaming monitor for you, consider the following:

  • 4K gaming requires a high-end graphics card. If you’re not using an Nvidia SLI or AMD Crossfire multi-graphics card setup, you’ll want at least a GTX 1070 Ti or RX Vega 64 for games at medium settings or an RTX-series card or Radeon VII for high or greater settings. Visit our Graphics Card Buying Guide for help.
  • G-Sync or FreeSync? A monitor’s G-Sync feature will only work with PCs using an Nvidia graphics card. FreeSync will only run with PCs carrying an AMD card. Only FreeSync monitors work over HDMI (for more, see our DisplayPort vs. HDMI analysis), but we’ve seen negligible differences in mainstream gaming capabilities for fighting screen tearing between the two. Our Nvidia G-Sync vs. AMD FreeSync article offers an in-depth performance comparison.
  • 4K and HDR go hand-in-hand. 4K displays often support HDR content for extra bright and colorful images. But for Adaptive-Sync optimized for HDR media, you’ll want a G-Sync Ultimate or FreeSync Premium Pro (formerly FreeSync 2 HDR) display. For a noticeable upgrade from an SDR monitor, opt for at least 600 nits brightness. You can learn more in our article on HDR’s meaning and our buying guiding for picking the best HDR monitor.
No description available.(Image credit: Acer)

1. Acer Nitro XV273K

Best 4K Gaming Monitor

Screen Size & Aspect Ratio: 27 inches, 16:9 | Resolution: 4K @ 144Hz | Panel Type: IPS | Refresh Rate: 144Hz | Response Time (GTG): 4ms | Adaptive-Sync: FreeSync 2 HDR, G-Sync Compatible

  • 144Hz refresh rate
  • Super bright at over 500 nits
  • Accurate DCI-P3 color gamut
  • Solid build
  • No dynamic contrast means HDR only looks slightly better than SDR
  • Inaccurate white point in sRGB mode

For the typical player, the Acer Nitro XV273K is the best 4K gaming monitor, achieving a balance between price and performance. Speed-demons won’t be disappointed. In our benchmarking, the Nitro XV273K’s 144Hz refresh rate kept its own among other 144Hz displays we’ve tested.

Image quality was also striking, thanks to added color from the Nitro XV273K’s use of the DCI-P3 color gamut and the panel’s high pixel density (163 pixels per inch). This display doesn’t have a full-array local dimming (FALD) backlight like the Asus ROG Swift PG27UQ or Acer Predator X27, so HDR won’t have as big of an impact — or a big impact at all. The plus is the Nitro is about $1,100 – $1,300 cheaper than those two displays.

No description available.(Image credit: Acer)

2. Acer Predator XB273K

Best 144Hz 4K Gaming Monitor

Screen Size & Aspect Ratio: 27 inches, 16:9 | Resolution: 4K @ 144Hz | Panel Type: IPS | Refresh Rate: 144Hz | Response Time (GTG): 4ms | Adaptive-Sync: G-Sync

  • Superb gaming performance
  • Out-of-box color accuracy
  • HDR
  • DCI-P3 color
  • Expensive

The Acer Predator XB273K is our favorite monitor for gaming in 4K at the premium 144Hz refresh rate. During fast-paced games with settings maxed, there was no blur. G-Sync worked successfully–with both standard and HDR content– to fight screen tearing when paired with an Nvidia graphics card. The monitor kept up well with other 144Hz displays during our testing and even beat the Asus ROG Swift PG27UQ and Acer Predator X27 when it came to input lag.

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Of course, Image quality is also important. The Predator delivers with pro-level color accuracy. Again, HDR doesn’t look as good as it does on the Asus ROG Swift PG27UQ or Acer Predator X27 because those two display pack FALD backlights. But we consider the Predator XB273K the next best thing. Plus, you can sometimes find it for about$1,200 less than those displays.

No description available.(Image credit: Asus)

3. Asus TUF Gaming VG289Q

Best Budget 4K Gaming Monitor

Screen Size & Aspect Ratio: 28 inches, 16:9 | Resolution: 3840 x 2160 | Panel Type: IPS | Refresh Rate: 60 Hz | Response Time (GTG): 5ms | Adaptive-Sync: AMD FreeSync

  • Good value
  • Accurate color
  • Good build quality
  • Average contrast
  • HDR looks only slightly better than SDR

You don’t often see the word budget associated with a 4K monitor, but the Asus TUF Gaming VG289Q isn’t just affordable, it’s a great gaming monitor too. Despite being just $330 as of writing, the display offers a great amount of performance, making it a fantastic value for gamers looking to get to 4K without breaking the bank. We’ve even seen 4K monitors at the $400 mark offer lesser gaming performance.

There was no ghosting when we gamed on the VG289Q, and overdrive successfully helped eliminate motion blur. SDR titles looked extra colorful, but there was hardly any improvement when moving over to HDR games.

With the VG289Q priced so low, it’s not surprising that its refresh rate is limited to just 60 Hz (FreeSync works down to 48 Hz). Hardcore gamers will want more Hz, but casual players can make due with fast-paced scenes showing sufficient detail and great pixel density.

No description available.(Image credit: Asus)

4. Asus ROG Swift PG27UQ

Best 4K Gaming Monitor for Speedy HDR

Screen Size & Aspect Ratio: 27 inches, 16:9 | Resolution: 4K @ 120Hz | Panel Type: IPS | Refresh Rate: 144Hz with overclock | Response Time (GTG): 4ms | Adaptive-Sync: G-Sync

  • Stunning image
  • Amazing SDR and HDR contrast
  • Over 90% DCI-P3 coverage
  • Build quality, styling
  • Expensive

The Asus ROG Swift PG27UQ is the best 4K gaming monitor for enjoying HDR. When it comes to mouthwatering HDR delivery, nothing can beat a full-array WLED backlight with zone dimming. We were able to tell the difference in HDR games, like Call of Duty: WWII, through detailed shadows, brilliant highlights and realistic-looking textures.

Of course, this is also a great monitor for competitive gaming, thanks to its high 120Hz refresh rate at 4K resolution that can climb to 144Hz with overclock. The PG27UQ’s closest rival is the Acer Predator X27, which has that same type of  backlight that makes HDR look its best. But the PG27UQ has a small leg up on the X27 with a 1ms faster response time.

No description available.(Image credit: Acer)

5. Acer Predator X27

Best 4K Gaming Monitor for Premium HDR

Screen Size & Aspect Ratio: 27 inches, 16:9 | Resolution: 4K | Panel Type: VA | Refresh Rate: 120Hz, 144Hz with overclock | Response Time (GTG): 5ms | Adaptive-Sync : G-Sync

  • Excellent HDR
  • Extended color
  • Stellar gaming experience
  • Build quality
  • No brightness adjustment in HDR mode
  • Expensive

The Acer Predator X27 offers near-identical performance to the Asus ROG Swift PG27UQ above. The Asus edges the Acer out spec-wise with a 1ms shorter response time, but in our testing we found the monitors comparable in both gaming capabilities and SDR and HDR quality. On the other hand, the Predator X27 showed a slight edge over the PG27UQ in out-of-box color accuracy and comes with a light-blocking hood. If you’re stuck between the two, your best bet is likely to opt for the one currently selling at the lower price.

Like the PG27UQ, the Predator X27 has a FALD backlight with zone dimming that produces mouth-watering HDR. Its insane gaming specs ensured tear-free gaming at high frame rate during our testing. If you’ve got the graphics horsepower to make the most of it, this monitor sits atop the 4K gaming displays list.

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