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How to Choose a Gaming Monitor – Including ASUS ROG and TUF Gaming Range Round-up and Buyers Guide

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Disclaimer: this article includes sponsored promotion, but all content, opinions and commentary are our own

Introduction

We review a lot of gaming monitors at TFTCentral, and there’s a huge choice out there for buyers. But where should you look when you’re wanting a new gaming monitor? Where do you even start? Do you look at OLED? Esports screens? Should you prioritise refresh rate or response times? Will any extra features like motion blur reduction modes or latency analyzer tools help you? Is HDR gaming a priority? What size and resolution do you even need?… It’s often difficult to know where to start, so we thought it would be useful to try and write a guide that explains some of these options in more detail, and will hopefully help you decide which display is right for your needs and your budget.

As well as explaining some of the specs, features and capabilities you should be looking out for, we will provide some recommendations of possible monitors to look at within the wide and diverse range that ASUS offer. ASUS have been around the monitor market for a long time now and their ROG (top end, highest performance gaming), and TUF (more mainstream/casual) gaming line-ups are well regarded and popular, and offer a great selection for different requirements. If you’re stuck trying to choose a new gaming screen, hopefully this article will help.

Quick Overview

Here’s a quick overview of the models discussed and compared in this article, plenty more information below in the relevant sections:

OLED Gaming Monitors

PG27AQDM OLED Monitor

* 27″ in size in a normal monitor form factor, with an OLED panel and 2560 x 1440 resolution
* 240Hz native refresh rate supported by adaptive-sync VRR (NVIDIA ‘G-sync Compatible’ and AMD ‘FreeSync Premium’ certifications
* Wide gamut with 99% DC-P3 coverage and 1000 nits peak brightness for HDR

> Our full review here
> Available on Amazon in many regions, and from Overclockers UK
PG42UQ OLED Large Format Display

* 42″ sized display using an OLED panel and with 3840 x 2160 “4K” resolution
* 138Hz refresh rate with adaptive-sync VRR, including G-sync Compatible certification
* Despite large screen size it includes monitor-like features including DisplayPort 1.4 connection (and 2x HDMI 2.1), standby mode, matte screen coating

> Our full review here
> Available on Amazon in many regions, and from Overclockers UK
PG48UQ OLED Large Format Display

* 48″ sized display using an OLED panel and with 3840 x 2160 “4K” resolution, the larger brother to the 42″ PG42UQ listed above
* 138Hz refresh rate with adaptive-sync VRR, including G-sync Compatible certification
* Despite large screen size it includes monitor-like features including DisplayPort 1.4 connection (and 2x HDMI 2.1), standby mode, matte screen coating

> Available on Amazon in many regions, and from Overclockers UK
PG49WCD QD-OLED Super Ultrawide Monitor

* 49″ super ultrawide monitor with 5120 x 1440 resolution QD-OLED panel
* 144Hz refresh rate and adaptive-sync support for VRR, including AMD ‘FreeSync Premium Pro’ certification
* 1000 nits peak brightness for HDR

> Our full review here
> Check availability and pricing on Amazon

Esports Gaming Monitors

PG27AQN

* 27″ in size with a 2560 x 1440 resolution and 360Hz refresh rate combined, the first of its kind to market
* Ultra Fast IPS panel with excellent response times
* Native NVIDIA G-sync module for VRR, including variable overdrive support (works with AMD graphics cards too)
* Added high end technologies including new ULMB 2 and Reflex Latency

> Our full review here
> Available on Amazon in many regions, and from Overclockers UK
Pro PG248QP

* 24″ in size with a 1920 x 1080 resolution ‘Esports TN Film’ panel and market-leading 540Hz refresh rate
* Native NVIDIA G-sync module for VRR, including variable overdrive support (works with AMD graphics cards too)
* Added high end technologies including new ULMB 2 and Reflex Latency

> Our full review here
> Available on Amazon in many regions

4K Gaming Monitors

PG32UQX (ROG Swift line-up)

* 32″ sized with an IPS panel, 4K resolution and 144Hz refresh rate
* High-end 1152 zone Mini LED backlight for HDR content, including VESA DisplayHDR 1400 certification
* Native NVIDIA G-sync module for VRR, including variable overdrive support (works with AMD graphics cards too)

> Our full review here
> Available on Amazon in many regions, and from Overclockers UK
PG32UQXR (ROG Swift line-up)

* A more recent version of the PG32UQX but with some changes
* A slightly higher refresh rate but no G-sync module and fewer dimming zones from the Mini LED backlight
* 32″ sized with a ‘Fast IPS’ panel, 4K resolution and 160Hz refresh rate
* 576 zone zone Mini LED backlight for HDR content, including VESA DisplayHDR 1000 certification

> Available on Amazon in many regions

XG32UQ (ROG Strix line-up)

* 32″ sized with a ‘Fast IPS’ panel, 4K resolution and 160Hz refresh rate
* Adaptive-sync for VRR including NVIDIA ‘G-sync Compatible’ and AMD ‘FreeSync Premium’ certifications
* ELMB blur reduction mode (not compatible with VRR on this model)
* VESA DisplayHDR 600 support with edge-lit local dimming only

Available on Amazon in many regions, and in the UK from Overclockers UK and ASUS’ store
VG28UQL1A (TUF Gaming line-up)

* 28″ in size with a ‘Fast IPS’ panel, 4K resolution and 144Hz refresh rate
* Adaptive-sync for VRR including NVIDIA ‘G-sync Compatible’ and AMD ‘FreeSync Premium’ certifications
* ELMB-sync blur reduction mode (works with VRR)

Available on Amazon in many regions, and in the UK from Overclockers UK and ASUS’ store

Other Gaming Monitors Covered

XG27AQMR (ROG Strix line-up)

* 27″ in size with a 2560 x 1440 resolution ‘Fast IPS’ panel and 300Hz refresh rate
* Adaptive-sync for VRR including NVIDIA ‘G-sync Compatible’ and AMD ‘FreeSync Premium Pro’ certifications
* ELMB-sync blur reduction mode, including support for VRR at the same time

> Available on Amazon in many regions
VG27VQ (TUF Gaming line-up)

* 27″ in size with a 1920 x 1080 resolution, curved VA panel and 165Hz refresh rate
* Adaptive-sync support for VRR and ELMB (Extreme Low Motion Blur) mode

> Available on Amazon in many regions, and in the UK from Overclockers and ASUS’ store
VG27WQ (TUF Gaming line-up)

* 27″ sized screen with a curved VA panel. This has a higher 2560 x 1440 res than the VG27VQ listed above
* 165Hz refresh rate supported by adaptive-sync for VRR, and including ELMB mode

> Available on Amazon in many regions, and in the UK from Overclockers and ASUS’ store
XG309CM (ROG Strix line-up)

* 30″ ultrawide screen with a 2560 x 1080 resolution ‘Fast IPS’ panel
* Flat format, 21:9 aspect ratio and 220Hz refresh rate
* Adaptive-sync support for VRR and ELMB (Extreme Low Motion Blur) mode

> Our full review here
> Available on Amazon in many regions, and in the UK from Overclockers and ASUS’ store
PG329Q-W (ROG Swift line-up)

* A very rare white coloured enclosure for a different aesthetic
* 32″ sized screen with a ‘Fast IPS’ panel and 2560 x 1440 resolution
* 175Hz refresh rate with adaptive-sync for VRR and ELMB-sync blur reduction mode (with VRR)
* HDR 600 certification for mid-tier HDR

> Our full review (of the normal black version)
> Available on Amazon in many regions (white version)

XG16APHE (ROG Strix line-up)

* A small and compact 15.6″ portable gaming monitor with built-in battery
* 1920 x 1080 resolution IPS panel
* 144Hz refresh rate and adaptive-sync for VRR

> Available on Amazon in some regions

TFTCentral is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Programme, an affiliate advertising programme designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk, Amazon.de, Amazon.ca and other Amazon stores worldwide. We also participate in a similar scheme for Overclockers.co.uk.


We will talk through the different ranges in a bit more detail below to explain their position in the market and help you decide which might be right for your gaming needs.

OLED Gaming Monitors

ASUS ROG Swift PG27AQDM is a normal monitor-size OLED display option with 240Hz refresh rate

OLED gaming monitors have started to appear really in the last year and there’s a lot of hype around them, for good reason in many cases. Nowadays there’s quite a few options available using this impressive, and quite different to traditional LCD, panel technology. OLED panels are produced either by LG.Display with their so-called WOLED technology or by Samsung with their competing QD-OLED technology, but overall both offer similar performance characteristics. When it comes to gaming, OLED will offer you near-instant response times, with real sub-1ms G2G specs being achieved. To keep up with the marketing hype, you will normally see OLED listed with something like 0.03ms G2G and while they might not really reach quite this low, they are consistently capable of delivering <1ms easily, and all without any need for overdrive to be used, and therefore avoiding any overshoot problems during usage. These excellent response times make them very well suited to gaming, being very capable of keeping up with the highest refresh rates easily, and offering consistent performance at lower refresh rates and when using VRR too.

When it comes to refresh rates, current OLED panels can reach up to 240Hz maximum, although there are plans in the coming years to produce higher refresh rate panels. On paper that puts them a bit behind the fastest LCD panels where 360Hz is quite common now, and 500Hz+ are starting to appear. However, despite the lower refresh rate compared with the LCD market OLED panels do very well with motion clarity and beyond what you might normally expect from their LCD counterparts. When considering OLED monitor motion clarity, a good general rule of thumb is that because of the super-low response time of OLED, the performance will be roughly equivalent to an LCD that has 1.5x the OLED panel’s refresh rate. So for instance a 240Hz OLED is roughly equivalent to a good 360Hz LCD in real-life motion clarity (240 x1.5 = 360). So OLED is great for motion clarity even if they do have slightly lower refresh rates on paper compared with the top-end LCD monitors. Combined with the great response times and no overshoot trails, it makes them very well suited to gaming.

A 240Hz OLED is roughly equivalent to a 360Hz LCD monitor in motion clarity

Keep in mind that it won’t be able to match the same frame rate as higher refresh rate monitors, so if that’s super-important to your gaming then there is a difference there. But motion clarity is very strong, meaning minimal blurring and smearing. Also keep in mind that powering a display at a lower refresh rate like 240Hz will also be less strain on your system, allowing you to push image settings and detail, or even use older systems and graphics cards.

HDR is an area where OLED panels excel

Another key benefit of OLED gaming panels is in their HDR performance. On an OLED panel, each pixel can be individually switched off which means you can get true blacks, a basically infinite contrast ratio and per-pixel local dimming for HDR (and SDR for that matter). That means no blooming or halos, and brilliant black depth. OLED is therefore very highly regarded in the monitor market for HDR gaming, arguably the best technology in fact for HDR gaming, and so if this is an area you’re interested in, you will find some of the best performance here. An OLED screen won’t be able to reach as bright as high-end Mini LED backlights for HDR scenes (covered below in the 4K gaming section), but the contrast and local dimming capabilities are unmatched.

OLED isn’t perfect in every way though and won’t be suitable for everyone. It’s an excellent technology for gaming and HDR but has some limitations for more general usage including an unusual sub-pixel structure which can cause slightly distorted text and makes it less suited to office and text work. Risks of image retention may also play on your mind if you’re using the screen for a lot of static office and general content too. If you’re interested in a screen for dynamic gaming and movies though, they really do offer excellent picture quality.

ASUS ROG OLED Gaming Display Options

The PG27AQDM is a 26.5″ sized OLED monitor, and our favourite HDR gaming display right now

ASUS currently have four OLED gaming monitors in their top-end ROG (Republic of Gamers) monitor range, one of which has not been released yet but is coming soon. They’ve got one traditional monitor-sized option, the 26.5″ PG27AQDM (our review) which has a 240Hz refresh rate and 1440p resolution. This is the best option if you’re after a normal-sized OLED monitor and offers some impressive gaming performance. It’s our favourite gaming monitor right now for HDR gaming.

ASUS ROG Swift PG42UQ / PG48UQ are large format OLED display options

They’ve also got two larger format displays, which you’d really consider a cross-over between a TV and a monitor, but without TV tuners and Smart TV features still. These are great if you want a larger screen to increase immersion as long as you’ve got the space for it, or so you can sit at a further viewing distance for controller-based gaming. They’re also great for modern games consoles, as well as PC gaming.

The PG42UQ is 42″ in size (our review) and about the maximum we think is suitable as a desktop monitor, while the PG48UQ is a bit bigger at 48″ but great as a combo TV/monitor type display. Both have basically the same specs and features with a 4K (3840 x 2160) resolution and 138Hz refresh rate. Despite their larger TV-like size, they are built as desktop monitors and so feature monitor-type features like DisplayPort connections, standby mode and USB data ports for instance.

  • Check pricing and buy – The 42″ PG42UQ is available here on Amazon in many regions, and from Overclockers UK
  • Check pricing and buy – The 48″ PG48UQ is also available on Amazon in many regions, and from Overclockers UK.
ASUS ROG Swift PG49WCD offers a super ultrawide format in 49″ screen size

The fourth model announced by ASUS is their forthcoming ROG Swift PG49WCD (now reviewed) which will be the company’s first to use Samsung’s QD-OLED tech. This will be a 49″ super ultrawide screen with a 5120 x 1440 resolution and 144Hz refresh rate, so if you’re after a wide format screen for multi-tasking, multiple inputs (PiP and PbP), or just for massive field of view in gaming then this might be an interesting option. It could be great for wide field of view games like racing simulators or RTS titles. We look forward to testing that in the future when it’s available.

One other feature worth noting for the ASUS OLED range is that the company has added a custom heatsink to each model, helping they say to dissipate heat and over time help reduce the risk of image retention and burn-in. It also allows the OLED panels to sustain higher peak brightness in HDR, reaching ~1000 nits. The heat sink also means that none of their OLED screens need to feature active cooling fans, unlike the competing models from other manufacturers, so if a silent setup is important to you, it’s a welcome feature.

ASUS ROG Swift OLED Gaming Monitors

PG27AQDM OLED Monitor

* 27″ in size in a normal monitor form factor, with an OLED panel and 2560 x 1440 resolution
* 240Hz native refresh rate supported by adaptive-sync VRR (NVIDIA ‘G-sync Compatible’ and AMD ‘FreeSync Premium’ certifications
* Wide gamut with 99% DC-P3 coverage and 1000 nits peak brightness for HDR

> Our full review here
> Available on Amazon in many regions, and from Overclockers UK
PG42UQ OLED Large Format Display

* 42″ sized display using an OLED panel and with 3840 x 2160 “4K” resolution
* 138Hz refresh rate with adaptive-sync VRR, including G-sync Compatible certification
* Despite large screen size it includes monitor-like features including DisplayPort 1.4 connection (and 2x HDMI 2.1), standby mode, matte screen coating

> Our full review here
> Available on Amazon in many regions, and from Overclockers UK
PG48UQ OLED Large Format Display

* 48″ sized display using an OLED panel and with 3840 x 2160 “4K” resolution, the larger brother to the 42″ PG42UQ listed above
* 138Hz refresh rate with adaptive-sync VRR, including G-sync Compatible certification
* Despite large screen size it includes monitor-like features including DisplayPort 1.4 connection (and 2x HDMI 2.1), standby mode, matte screen coating

> Available on Amazon in many regions, and from Overclockers UK
PG49WCD QD-OLED Super Ultrawide Monitor

* 49″ super ultrawide monitor with 5120 x 1440 resolution QD-OLED panel
* 144Hz refresh rate and adaptive-sync support for VRR, including AMD ‘FreeSync Premium Pro’ certification
* 1000 nits peak brightness for HDR

> Our full review here
> Check availability and pricing on Amazon

TFTCentral is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Programme, an affiliate advertising programme designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk, Amazon.de, Amazon.ca and other Amazon stores worldwide. We also participate in a similar scheme for Overclockers.co.uk.

Further related content:

Esports Monitors

If you’re after the absolute fastest gaming monitors with the latest in technology and features, then those aimed specifically at Esports and competitive gaming would be a very good bet. They will offer you the fastest LCD response times and panels available, the highest refresh rates and top-end advanced features to enhance and optimise your gaming experience. If we look at the Esports-focused monitors in ASUS’ range, they give us a very good idea of what you might find in this space.

The ASUS PG27AQN offers 360Hz refresh rate, but on a 27″ screen with 1440p resolution – the first of its kind

First up is their PG27AQN monitor, one that we reviewed and that we’d rate as the best overall SDR gaming monitor available right now. It’s a bit limited for HDR capabilities, but excels everywhere else. The PG27AQN has a high 360Hz refresh rate, but rather than having to settle for a smaller (24.5″) sized screen and a low 1080p resolution like all the other 360Hz monitors released so far, the PG27AQN is 27″ in size and offers a 2560 x 1440 (1440p) resolution. It’s the first of its kind to market in fact. If you are used to gaming on a smaller screen, or want to push 1080p resolution from your system in order to maximise frame rates, the PG27AQN also handles that nicely through a feature called ‘Dual mode’. You can run in a windowed mode with smaller screen size and lower res if you want, allowing you to get the best of both world’s depending on your game and usage. But having the flexibility to use a larger screen area and resolution opens up new possibilities for gamers.

In fact NVIDIA researchers found that when taking shots in a game at small targets, using a larger 1440p 27″ display can improve aim by up to 3% compared to playing on a traditional 1080p 24.5″ sized displays. For competitive gamers, that 3% could mean the difference between victory and defeat. The larger screen size also makes it far more usable for non-gaming applications and general use if you want a more multi-purpose screen. It also gives you the option to increase resolution and screen size for slower paced games, or if you aren’t tied to 1080p or competing.

The PG27AQN uses a latest generation ‘Ultra Fast IPS’ panel with a range of customisations that has led to very impressive response times, especially after some tweaks made by NVIDIA at the end of May 2023 via a new firmware. The screen was co-created with NVIDIA, featuring their Native G-sync module hardware which supports excellent VRR performance, variable overdrive, super low input lag and also their newly added ULMB 2 (Ultra Low Motion Blur 2) technology. This is a feature that will only be available on the fastest top-end gaming screens, and in fact the PG27AQN and ASUS’ PG248QP (discussed below) are 2 of only 4 models announced so far with it.

ULMB 2 offers a strobing blur reduction backlight mode which delivers the equivalent motion clarity of a hypothetical 1440Hz display (on the PG27AQN) or of a 2160Hz display (on the PG248QP). We were very impressed by the performance of ULMB 2 in our testing, and so for those who are looking to maximise motion clarity and improve sharpness and tracking of fast-moving images in games, it’s a very good technology. You can read much more about ULMB 2 in our article here, or see our testing of it on the PG27AQN here.

Also linked to the NVIDIA G-sync module is the inclusion of Reflex Latency Analyzer, a tool that allows you to easily track the end to end latency of your system, allowing you to make adjustments and improvements to improve your overall responsiveness in gaming, from mouse to display. We took a deep look at Reflex Latency Analyzer in our article here if you want to know more. The G-sync module, ULMB 2 and Reflex Latency Analyzer are the kind pf premium features reserved for the really top-end gaming and Esports screens.

The forthcoming ASUS PG248QP has a whopping 540Hz refresh rate!

Elsewhere in the ASUS Esports monitor range is the ROG Swift Pro PG248QP. This is a smaller sized display, in a more traditional 24″ size for competitive gaming but it is really pushing the current boundaries of refresh rate with a whopping 540Hz, the fastest on the market! This model features a 1920 x 1080 (1080p) resolution E-TN Film panel (“Esports TN Film”) which should offer excellent response times, fast enough to keep up with the very high frame rates. The panel has been co-developed with AU Optronics and TN Film is still a popular panel tech for competitive gaming, even though there’s a lot of high refresh rate IPS panels out there now. We saw some value in TN Film tech when we tested the BenQ Zowie XL2566K (360Hz) recently too.

Why might you want or need 540Hz? Well, if you’re after the absolute fastest display, with the highest frame rate support for competitive gaming then this will offer you that. There will be improvements in overall end to end system latency (from “click to photon” times) due to the higher frame rates, and motion clarity should also be improved due to the relationship between refresh rate and how the human eye sees motion blur. That improvement in motion clarity won’t be as drastic as the jump from 60Hz to 120Hz, or from 120Hz to 240Hz but should still be noticeable in specific situations to a small degree. These improvements should stack up to small incremental gains for high end competitive gaming, giving you the edge that could make the difference in competition. The PG248QP will also use the Native NVIDIA G-sync module, and comes with ULMB 2 and Reflex Latency Analyzer support.

  • Our full review of the Asus ROG Swift Pro PG248QP is available here and you can now buy it from most regions on Amazon

ASUS ROG Swift Esports Gaming Monitors

PG27AQN

* 27″ in size with a 2560 x 1440 resolution and 360Hz refresh rate combined, the first of its kind to market
* Ultra Fast IPS panel with excellent response times
* Native NVIDIA G-sync module for VRR, including variable overdrive support (works with AMD graphics cards too)
* Added high end technologies including new ULMB 2 and Reflex Latency

> Our full review here
> Available on Amazon in many regions, and from Overclockers UK
Pro PG248QP

* 24″ in size with a 1920 x 1080 resolution ‘Esports TN Film’ panel and market-leading 540Hz refresh rate
* Native NVIDIA G-sync module for VRR, including variable overdrive support (works with AMD graphics cards too)
* Added high end technologies including new ULMB 2 and Reflex Latency

> Our full review here
> Available on Amazon in many regions

TFTCentral is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Programme, an affiliate advertising programme designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk, Amazon.de, Amazon.ca and other Amazon stores worldwide. We also participate in a similar scheme for Overclockers.co.uk.

Related content:

4K Gaming Monitors

What about if you want a higher resolution? 4K gaming has become increasingly popular, and while it requires a more powerful system to run, it provides impressive improvements in many situations for image detail. If you’re mainly wanting your games to look amazing with super-high levels of detail and an amazing picture quality, then a 4K monitor will serve you well. You may have to sacrifice frame rates from your system to push the resolution, and in fact the 4K screens will offer lower refresh rates anyway than competing 1440p or 1080p models.

We talked about a couple of 4K OLED screens earlier on which are large format gaming displays (the 42″ PG42UQ and 48″ PG48UQ). If you’re after a more traditional and sensible monitor size for desktop usage and PC gaming, there are some good options in the 32″ size range, and also some slightly smaller models if you prefer.

The ASUS ROG Swift PG32UQX is their flagship 4K gaming display

If we look specifically at the ASUS gaming monitors available with a 4K resolution we should start with the flagship ROG Swift PG32UQX (our review). This is a 32″ sized screen which is probably the ideal size for 4K on a desktop monitor up close. It gives a larger screen size than 27″ 4K models and allows you to make more use of the desktop space the resolution affords you, without as much OS scaling needed. 32″ is a popular “sweet spot” for 4K.

The PG32UQX has an IPS panel, 144Hz refresh rate, Native G-sync module and a high end Mini LED backlight. It’s this Mini LED backlight that separates it from many other 4K gaming monitors, and is one of the main reasons behind the monitor’s high price point. It’s a 1152-zone Mini LED backlight which offers very good local dimming capabilities for some of the best HDR experience you can get from an LCD (non-OLED) monitor right now. You don’t get the same per-pixel dimming and true blacks that you get on OLED monitors, but these Mini LED backlights can offer offer significantly higher brightness in HDR than OLED screens – reaching up to >1600 nits in fact on the PG32UQX in our testing, and meeting the VESA DisplayHDR 1400 certification. The PG32UQX is a really impressive 4K gaming screen, but has a hefty price tag for sure.

  • Check pricing and buy – You can check it out on Amazon in many regions, and from Overclockers UK too.
The PG32UQXR will offer a more affordable option in the 32″ 4K gaming space than the flagship PG32UQX predecessor

ASUS are actually producing a slightly different version of this screen in the near future, the ROG Swift PG32UQXR. Despite the additional letter added to the product name, this isn’t a direct “update” or replacement as such, as a few things are changing. This is going to be a more affordable mid-range priced model, with a few things stripped back from the PG32UQX to make that possible. ASUS have used a ‘Fast IPS’ panel but removed the Native G-sync module and used adaptive-sync for VRR this time, and the screen uses a more modest (and affordable) 576-zone Mini LED backlight. Still impressive and capable of some decent local dimming in the LCD monitor market, with a high brightness, but half the number of zones compared with the earlier model. ASUS have increased the refresh rate a tad though here to 160Hz. This is worth looking at if you want a more affordable 4K gaming screen, but still want a decent Mini LED backlight for HDR gaming.

> Check pricing and buy – You can check it out on on Amazon in many regions

ASUS ROG Strix XG32UQ provides a more affordable 32″ 4K gaming monitor option

If you want an even more affordable option for 4K gaming then ASUS also have a couple of screens that offer 4K with high refresh rate (144 – 160Hz) but without the expensive Mini LED backlights. The ROG Strix XG32UQ is a 32″ ‘Fast IPS’ panel option that has 4K 160Hz support and some nice added gaming features like their blur reduction ELMB (Extreme Low Motion Blur) mode. The price has been cut down compared with the PG32UQX / UQXR models because of the removal of the Mini LED backlight, but there are still some mid-tier HDR capabilities on offer. The screen conforms to the DisplayHDR 600 standard so offers the colour improvements associated with HDR, a moderate >600 nits brightness, but only some simple edge-lit local dimming. It won’t offer anywhere near the local dimming capabilities and brightness of the Mini LED models though, so it’s a screen that’s better suited to SDR and more casual HDR gaming. But your wallet will thank you.

The ASUS TUF Gaming VG28UQL1A is a more affordable and mainstream 4K gaming monitor option

Another model worth mentioning is the VG28UQL1A. This is part of ASUS’ more mainstream ‘TUF Gaming’ gaming monitor line-up. It has more modest overall specs and features, but is lower priced as a result. This is a 28″ sized ‘Fast IPS’ screen so a bit smaller than the others discussed here, but still supports 4K resolution for high image detail and pixel density. It has a 144Hz refresh rate and adaptive-sync for VRR support.

One thing that these 4K monitors are particularly good at is support for latest generation games consoles like the Xbox Series S/X and the PlayStation 5. The PG32UQXR, XG32UQ and VG28UQL1A all feature HDMI 2.1 video connections, supporting 4K 120Hz from these consoles with full bandwidth available, along with features like VRR. They are popular options if you want a screen to handle both PC and console gaming.

ASUS 4K Gaming Monitors

PG32UQX (ROG Swift line-up)

* 32″ sized with an IPS panel, 4K resolution and 144Hz refresh rate
* High-end 1152 zone Mini LED backlight for HDR content, including VESA DisplayHDR 1400 certification
* Native NVIDIA G-sync module for VRR, including variable overdrive support (works with AMD graphics cards too)

> Our full review here
> Available on Amazon in many regions, and from Overclockers UK
PG32UQXR (ROG Swift line-up)

* A more recent version of the PG32UQX but with some changes
* A slightly higher refresh rate but no G-sync module and fewer dimming zones from the Mini LED backlight
* 32″ sized with a ‘Fast IPS’ panel, 4K resolution and 160Hz refresh rate
* 576 zone zone Mini LED backlight for HDR content, including VESA DisplayHDR 1000 certification

> Available on Amazon in many regions

XG32UQ (ROG Strix line-up)

* 32″ sized with a ‘Fast IPS’ panel, 4K resolution and 160Hz refresh rate
* Adaptive-sync for VRR including NVIDIA ‘G-sync Compatible’ and AMD ‘FreeSync Premium’ certifications
* ELMB blur reduction mode (not compatible with VRR on this model)
* VESA DisplayHDR 600 support with edge-lit local dimming only

Available on Amazon in many regions, and in the UK from Overclockers UK and ASUS’ store
VG28UQL1A (TUF Gaming line-up)

* 28″ in size with a ‘Fast IPS’ panel, 4K resolution and 144Hz refresh rate
* Adaptive-sync for VRR including NVIDIA ‘G-sync Compatible’ and AMD ‘FreeSync Premium’ certifications
* ELMB-sync blur reduction mode (works with VRR)

Available on Amazon in many regions, and in the UK from Overclockers UK and ASUS’ store

TFTCentral is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Programme, an affiliate advertising programme designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk, Amazon.de, Amazon.ca and other Amazon stores worldwide. We also participate in a similar scheme for Overclockers.co.uk.

Related content:

After something different?

What if you’ve decided you don’t want an OLED, Esports or 4K gaming monitor or don’t have the budget for some of the top-end options we’ve discussed? Thankfully there’s a really wide range of alternative options in the gaming monitor market, with different panel technologies, sizes, resolutions and features. They of course won’t offer the capabilities and technologies of the more expensive models, and won’t have expensive features like the G-sync module, Latency Analyzer or ULMB 2 for instance. HDR capabilities are also very limited in these mid and lower tier models, they are more for casual SDR gaming. You will also find lower refresh rates here in this mainstream gaming monitor space.

It’s impossible to cover them all, but we will talk here about some other possible options to consider, again using ASUS’ monitor range as examples.

The ROG Strix XG27AQMR is an interesting option coming soon from ASUS, offering an impressive spec a little below their top-tier Esports monitor (the PG27AQN that we’ve reviewed), but at an expected lower price point. It is 27″ in size again with a 1440p resolution ‘Fast IPS’ panel, but has a slightly lower refresh rate of 300Hz instead of 360Hz. It also doesn’t feature the Native G-sync module and capabilities that it offers, including Reflex Latency Analyzer and the new ULMB 2 blur reduction mode and certification. It instead uses adaptive-sync for VRR, but ASUS have added their own ‘ELMB-sync’ technology to offer blur reducing benefits in gaming. It’s an interesting trimmed down offering if you want a fast gaming display, but don’t have the budget for the top-end bells and whistles. We will hopefully feature a review of this model in the near future.

  • Check pricing and buy – the XG27AQMR is available on Amazon in many regions
The ASUS VG27VQ and VG27WQ are curved VA panels in the mainstream ‘TUF Gaming’ line-up

ASUS have a couple of more budget-friendly gaming screens in their mainstream ‘TUF Gaming’ line-up as well. The VG27VQ (1080p resolution)} and VG27WQ (1440p resolution) are very similar overall in features and specs, apart from the resolution. They are 27″ in size but actually use VA technology panels and a curved screen format (1500R). The VA panels will provide higher contrast ratios and better black depth than competing IPS panels, and will avoid some of the “IPS glow” you see on darker content, but are generally not as fast and smooth for gaming. These models still have an added ELMB blur reduction mode and a fairly decent set of mid-tier specs.

The XG309CM provides a mid-tier ultrawide option, in a smaller screen size than typical ultrawide monitors too

There’s also some interesting ultrawide monitor options out there if you want something with a wider field of view which can be really good for racing and RTS games. The ROG Strix XG309CM (which we reviewed here) is 30″ in size so one of the smaller options in the ultrawide monitor market, with a 2560 x 1080 resolution ‘Fast IPS’ technology panel. That might make it more suitable if you’ve got less space to accommodate some of the more common 34″+ models on the market. It’s still got a high 220Hz overclocked refresh rate which gives it a decent bump in motion clarity and frame rate support compared with a lot of the mainstream models which are often in the 144 – 165Hz range.

We should also mention the ROG Swift PG329Q-W here. This is a rare white-coloured monitor which provides an interesting option if you’ve got a desktop and PC built around this kind of aesthetic. We’ve reviewed the normal black-coloured version of this screen (PG329Q), and it’s a decent 32″ sized option with a 1440p resolution ‘Fast IPS’ panel and a 175Hz refresh rate. 1440p on a 32″ model may initially sound like a low resolution, and it certainly isn’t as crisp and sharp as the 4K options. However, the added screen size compared with common 1440p 27″ models adds to immersion in games, and provides a more comfortable size if you are going to sit a bit further away for your gaming. It makes it a bit more comfortable for console gaming as well. There’s some decent mid-tier capabilities available from this monitor as well, so if you were after a white design, it’s a good option.

  • Check pricing and buy – the PG329Q-W is available on Amazon in many regions (white version)

Last up is something completely different! The ROG Strix XG16APHE is a small format 15.6″ sized portable gaming monitor. It’s designed for gaming on the go and has a built-in high-capacity battery, fold-out kickstand and tripod socket. It’s still got a 1080p resolution IPS panel, 144Hz refresh rate and VRR support including NVIDIA ‘G-sync Compatible’ certification so it has some decent gaming specs. It’s available in black or white colours too.

It’s an interesting gaming display option when you’re on the move, or perhaps if you want a small secondary display for your setup, or to accompany a laptop.

  • Check pricing and buy – More information on the XG16APHE is available on the ASUS website here, and it’s available to buy in some regions from Amazon too.
XG27AQMR (ROG Strix line-up)

* 27″ in size with a 2560 x 1440 resolution ‘Fast IPS’ panel and 300Hz refresh rate
* Adaptive-sync for VRR including NVIDIA ‘G-sync Compatible’ and AMD ‘FreeSync Premium Pro’ certifications
* ELMB-sync blur reduction mode, including support for VRR at the same time

> Available on Amazon in many regions
VG27VQ (TUF Gaming line-up)

* 27″ in size with a 1920 x 1080 resolution, curved VA panel and 165Hz refresh rate
* Adaptive-sync support for VRR and ELMB (Extreme Low Motion Blur) mode

> Available on Amazon in many regions, and in the UK from Overclockers and ASUS’ store
VG27WQ (TUF Gaming line-up)

* 27″ sized screen with a curved VA panel. This has a higher 2560 x 1440 res than the VG27VQ listed above
* 165Hz refresh rate supported by adaptive-sync for VRR, and including ELMB mode

> Available on Amazon in many regions, and in the UK from Overclockers and ASUS’ store
XG309CM (ROG Strix line-up)

* 30″ ultrawide screen with a 2560 x 1080 resolution ‘Fast IPS’ panel
* Flat format, 21:9 aspect ratio and 220Hz refresh rate
* Adaptive-sync support for VRR and ELMB (Extreme Low Motion Blur) mode

> Our full review here
> Available on Amazon in many regions, and in the UK from Overclockers and ASUS’ store
PG329Q-W (ROG Swift line-up)

* A very rare white coloured enclosure for a different aesthetic
* 32″ sized screen with a ‘Fast IPS’ panel and 2560 x 1440 resolution
* 175Hz refresh rate with adaptive-sync for VRR and ELMB-sync blur reduction mode (with VRR)
* HDR 600 certification for mid-tier HDR

> Our full review (of the normal black version)
> Available on Amazon in many regions (white version)

XG16APHE (ROG Strix line-up)

* A small and compact 15.6″ portable gaming monitor with built-in battery
* 1920 x 1080 resolution IPS panel
* 144Hz refresh rate and adaptive-sync for VRR

> Available on Amazon in some regions

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Wrap-up

Hopefully this guide has been useful in your quest to find a new gaming display. There’s certainly a massive choice out there whether you’re looking for the latest and greatest specs in the competitive and Esports space, want the OLED HDR gaming experience, want high resolution 4K support, or are after something a bit more casual, cheaper, mainstream or even quite niche. There’s a really wide range available from ASUS in their ROG and TUF Gaming ranges and they’ve really got something for everyone.

Related ASUS links


We may earn a commission if you purchase from our affiliate links in this article- TFTCentral is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Programme, an affiliate advertising programme designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk, Amazon.de, Amazon.ca and other Amazon stores worldwide. We also participate in a similar scheme for Overclockers.co.uk, Newegg, Bestbuy and some manufacturers.

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