Best Gaming Monitor Under $300: 2018 Top Picks & Reviews

Trying to find the best gaming monitor under $300? Whether you’re looking for a great 144hz monitor or a beautiful IPS monitor, we’ve got what you’re looking for here. With five great options to choose from, you’re sure to walk away satisfied!

Finding the top gaming monitor under $300 wasn’t the easiest task, but we managed to pull it off anyways. After sifting through the rough, we found five compelling options priced between $200 and $300, and one of these options will be just what you’re looking for.

We have two IPS displays and three 144hz displays at this price range. While you can’t get both in one monitor at this price, you don’t have to settle for some pedestrian display without either of these features.

In the interest of speed, simplicity and aesthetics, we’ve decided to have a little fun by adding nicknames to the monitors. The 144hz displays are named after speedsters from The Flash, with the IPS displays being named after some Rogues from the same series.

Enough waiting around, though. Let’s start rushing to the finish line!

Acer GN276HL

The Best Gaming Monitor Under $300: Breakdown

namerefresh rate and response timescreen size and resolutionipsRating
Kid FlashAOC G2460PQUAOC G2460PQU144hz / 1ms24-Inch / 1080pNo3.5/5
The FlashAcer GN276HLAcer GN276HL144hz / 1ms27-Inch / 1080pNo4/5
Captain ColdBenQ BL2420PTBenQ BL2420PT60hz / 5ms23.8-Inch / 1440pYes4/5
SavitarASUS VG278HVASUS VG278HV144hz / 1ms27-inch / 1080pNo4.5/5
Mirror MasterAcer H257HUAcer H257HU60hz / 4ms25-inch / 1440pYes4.5/5
#1

AOC G2460PQU

TECH SPECS

  • Refresh Rate and Response Time
    144hz / 1ms
  • Screen Size and Resolution
    24-Inch / 1080p
  • IPS?
    No

The AOC G2560PQU is a compelling, budget-oriented 144hz monitor. But we’ll just call it...Kid Flash.

While Kid Flash is certainly admirable for its speed and low price, it also suffers from a lack of features offered by other monitors in this range. Namely, a larger screen or IPS support.

However, it could be considered a little bit harsh to dock it points for what it isn’t. Ultimately, this monitor may be beat by the others on this list, but its entry-level 144hz performance is a force to be reckoned with, and you still wouldn’t be going wrong by buying it.

If you can afford more than $240, though...go a little bit higher. Or faster.

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#2

Acer GN276HL

TECH SPECS

  • Refresh Rate and Response Time
    144hz / 1ms
  • Screen Size and Resolution
    27-Inch / 1080p
  • IPS?
    No

The Acer GN276HL is one of the most popular 144hz monitors out there, and because of what we’ve named it after the Scarlet Speedster himself: The Flash.

The Flash offers a great 144hz refresh rate, and on top of that also packs a huge 27-inch display and plenty of angle adjustments. It unfortunately doesn’t have adjustable height, but you can’t expect a speedster to do everything you want them to.

Its main weaknesses remain the same of its protege. Due to being a 144hz monitor in this price range, it’s still restricted to 1080p and no IPS.

However, if you’re looking for a fairly-priced speedster of a gaming monitor...this may be what you’re looking for.

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#3

BenQ BL2420PT

TECH SPECS

  • Refresh Rate and Response Time
    60hz / 5ms
  • Screen Size and Resolution
    23.8-Inch / 1440p
  • IPS?
    Yes

In the comics and the TV show inspired by them, Captain Cold is a dramatic, flamboyant, incredibly entertaining villain.

Like its nick-namesake, the BenQ BL24020PT also appreciates cool blues and presentation...but suffers a bit in the area of speed.

While Captain Cold is clearly offering great pixel density, color reproduction and viewing angles, it’s unfortunately lacking in response time and size. This may not be everything to a PC gamer, but when compared to some other options on this list, Captain Cold may not be totally in charge.

Cold remains a solid choice, though, thanks to its superior 1440p resolution and IPS panel. Just keep its downsides in mind.

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#4

ASUS VG278HV

TECH SPECS

  • Refresh Rate and Response Time
    144hz / 1ms
  • Screen Size and Resolution
    27-inch / 1080p
  • IPS?
    No

In DC Comics, Savitar is a self-proclaimed God of Speed. The ASUS VG278HV seems to be rushing for the same goal, by offering one of the best 144hz monitors under $300.

Since they’re both so focused on speed, we’ll be calling this monitor Savitar as well.

Savitar is a large, black monitor coming in at 27 inches and a blazing-fast 144hz refresh rate. In addition to its speedy specs, it also offers full height, swivel and tilt adjustments, making it one of the flexible monitors in this roundup.

If you want the best 144hz monitor for under $300, Savitar is the right one for you. Just like its comic counterpart, this display rules over inferior speedsters and has cemented its place in our hearts as one of the best gaming monitors out there.

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#5

Acer H257HU

TECH SPECS

  • Refresh Rate and Response Time
    60hz / 4ms
  • Screen Size and Resolution
    25-inch / 1440p
  • IPS?
    Yes

In DC Comics, Mirror Master is a villain who uses mirrors to access a parallel Mirror Dimension. Like a superhero may feel battling this foe, you may feel like you’re peering right into another world when using the Acer H257HU.

The affectionately-nicknamed Mirror Master is the best IPS monitor for under $300, and it shows. With a 25-inch IPS display at 1440p, you’re sure to be envied by any gamers who get to look at your setup.

While not great, Mirror Master also decreases the high response time expected from IPS monitors by just a bit- down from a 6-7ms average to 4ms. While still not perfect for competitive gaming, it should feel much more responsive than your typical IPS display.

The Mirror Master is our top pick for IPS monitors under $300. We hope you like it.

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Selection Criteria

Resolution and Screen Size

The first thing that people tend to think of when buying a monitor is the level of detail that they’ll enjoy. For most, 1080p will more than suffice, but many want an even more detailed look into the virtual worlds behind their monitor.

For them, 1440p becomes ideal for a desk setup. With a significantly higher number of pixels than 1080p, 1440p is a whopping 78% increase in pixels and overall level of detail.

However, a few other factors need to be taken into consideration, too.

First off, your screen size. On 24-inch displays, 1080p looks pretty sharp to most eyes. However, on 27-inch displays, the pixel density is a bit lower and a trained eye may notice the difference, especially if they sit closer to their monitor or play games requiring high precision.

Since the 1440p monitors on this list are around the 24-inch range, you won’t see a huge benefit in sharpness. You’ll just notice that it looks...better than a 1080p counterpart, especially when IPS comes into play.

If you’re going to opt for a 1440p monitor, however, you also need to take performance into consideration. Your GPU may be fine at 1080p High settings, but can it chug out stable performance with a 78% increase in resolution?

If you’re skinning your teeth on some of these games...probably not. Keep that in mind when choosing your monitor.

Refresh Rate and Response Time

Response Time refers to pixel response time, and in short it determines how quickly your monitor responds to inputs. The lower, the better.

5 ms is considered acceptable by most, especially on larger displays. For serious gamers, however, it can be a noticeable delay. 1ms is preferred when at all possible by competitively-oriented gamers.

Refresh Rate, meanwhile, determines how much information your monitor can show you. Or how quickly it can do so, to be more accurate.

The higher your Refresh Rate, the better your in-game reaction times. This is because 144hz is much closer to real-life motion than 60hz is, allowing you a great advantage over your opponents in time to react, since you aren’t being held back by your monitor.

However, it will only work in supported games. And, obviously, it will tax your CPU and GPU much more than playing at 1080p60 would.

IPS or TN?

IPS panels offer greater color reproduction and viewing angles than the typical TN counterpart. Because of this, IPS panels are a favorite among video editors, movie watchers and single-player gamers who want to enjoy the best colors their graphics card has to offer.

However, IPS comes with a key downside: a lower response time and refresh rate, across the board. To get an IPS display that is also competitively-ready for serious gaming costs much, much more than what’s available in this price range.

In other words, IPS offers a better viewing experience at the expense of a competitive edge in gaming. If you aren’t a particularly competitive gamer, this shouldn’t be a problem to you.

If you are competitively-oriented, though, and don’t have an extra $300 to spend, you’re probably better off with a TN panel in a 144hz monitor.

Making Your Choice

Ultimately, the choice is up to you.

Kid Flash and The Flash both offer amazing budget 144hz options. If what you want is speed and competitive edge at a low price, either of these monitors should serve your needs perfectly.

Meanwhile, if you want great colors and viewing angles, both Captain Cold and Mirror Master are great solutions. They do come a little pricier, though, and aren’t as suited for competitive gaming.

If you’re a competitive PC gamer who wants only the best-built hardware, Savitar is easily the best choice. Its overall superior build quality, plus its 144hz refresh rate, is sure to satisfy anyone desiring godlike speed.

Our top overall picks are Mirror Master and Savitar- offering the best IPS and 144hz monitors for under $300, respectively.

Which one is your top pick?

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