we are limiting this to Ultra High Definition aka. It is the standard consumer format 3840x2160. True 4K is actually 4096 x 2160. So, there's your difference and blame the manufacturers for using stupid name schemes. 4K UHD is not actually true 4K!
Also, When you are in the 4K gaming world, you need powerful GPU to run games at 4K resolution. You need the beasts out there to enjoy it at maximum quality and fps.
Display Aspect Ratios
You will often come across these ratios.
21:9 , 16:10 or 16:9 . It is the proportional relationship between its width and its height.
Adaptive Sync: AMD Free Sync Vs Nvidia G-sync
It's a hot topic. I will draw the arguments first.
- Can only be used with NVIDIA GPUs
- GSYNC requires a display port connection
- Proprietary technology
- Freesync can only be used with AMD GPUs.
- Freesync can use either display port or HDMI 1.4
- Open standard
So why it's hot topic?
Both AMD and Nvidia GPUs will work on both monitors, but both can't utilize different company's adaptive V-sync technology.AMD GPU will work on a G-sync monitor, but it cannot utilize Gsync. NVIDIA GPU will work on a FreeSync monitor, but it cannot use FreeSync. However, It's possible for both cards to work on either adaptive syncs, NVIDIA blocks this compatibility and is not supporting Freesync.
Can adaptive sync help?
If you are playing a game and frames are bouncing back and forth constantly, then it will help.Still, It is not a must-have tech in the monitor. Having it won't hurt either. Gsync cost premium since it is a proprietary. Free sync monitors are comparatively cheap.
60HZ or 120HZ or 144HZ
It's not something you have to worry about it today. Why? Because all the high-end video cards struggle to run most games at 4K/60hz, let alone at 4K/144HZ even if you SLI. Dreams!
Overall Screen Size
If you are sitting like two feet away from the screen 24" will be okay. However, Going below that size can induce scaling issue in windows. Because of the pixel density increase. It can make desktop icons, and webpages look odd as if they were out of focus. 27" or 28" is sufficient if you are 3-4 feet.If you are sitting more than 4 feet, go for 30" higher screen size.
HDMI - Important
For 4k resolution, HDMI 1.4 is required. But it can do only a maximum of 30 FPS. For, 60Hz 4K monitor, you need HDMI 2.0 support.
DisplayPort 1.2a is needed for 4K displays at 60Hz refresh and full 30-bit 4:4:4 color (non-chroma subsampled). DisplayPort 1.4 support 5K displays (5120 x 2880) at 60Hz refresh, and for 4K displays, it'll enable deeper color and higher refresh rates. It does have other advantages as well such as several monitors can be connected to a single output on a video source device, using a daisy-chain or hub configuration.
Why it's important? Because older AMD cards don’t have HDMI 2.0 port.
GTG (Response time)
Its the time it takes for a pixel to change from one color value to another. GTG means time taken to shift from grey to grey. Manufacturers often advertise these value. But, these are not accurate because they all use different methods and promote whatever comes lowest. Individual testing and reviews are not free from errors as well because it's difficult to evaluate. Lower the better. 2ms is excellent.
Input lag or delay
It's the time takes the monitor to display an action or event after receiving the signal from the source. Folks often mistakes GTG with input lag. But both are different. A regular 60 Hz monitor can take up to 16.6ms to update its contents. But it still needs to send the display data to the panel, and the panel needs the specified GTG response time to react. Suppose the GTG is 2ms then display alone could add more than 18ms to input lag. If it's a 144Hz monitor then, the lag contributed by the monitor is limited to 9ms. But that's not it. The additional delay from all the input components can add lag. Lower the better. Most modern gaming monitors already equipped with tech to combat with lag. It's not something you have to obsess with in my opinion unless you want to be the perfectionist.
Different panels (TN, VA, and IPS)
TN panel (Twisted Nematic)is the cheapest with fast response time. But compared to IPS panel color quality isn't that great. IPS (in -plane switching)does have great color reproduction and good viewing angles, but it may suffer from IPS glow which is the drawback of the tech in which a glow is present when the monitor is displaying very dark content. It's hardly noticeable. VA (Vertical Alignment) is not quite as good as IPS but does have higher contrast ratio hence deeper blacks. Color reproduction is between TN and IPS. There are other types of panels as well.
That being said, there are superior and inferior quality panels in each panel type. For ex. A superior TN panel is better than inferior IPS panel.
Monitors aren't free from defects. Most common monitor defects are
Backlight Bleed, Stuck Pixel, Pixel Dead, Stuck Pixel and IPS Glow. These defects mostly arise due to defective transistors.
I'm not covering it here. In fact, I already covered it.Read the first part (non-highlighted).
Now to the Final Part of this guide. A few monitor recommendations :) You can recommend as well. Always ready to get expanded!
Best 4K G-Sync Monitors
Acer XB280HK 28-inch Display Ultra HD 4K NVIDIA G-SYNC (3840 x 2160) Widescreen Monitor
ASUS ROG SWIFT 27-inch G-SYNC 4K Gaming Monitor [PG27AQ]
Acer Predator XB271HK 27-inch IPS UHD (3840 x 2160) NVIDIA G-Sync
Best 4K Free Sync Monitors
LG 27UD68-P 27-Inch 4K UHD IPS Monitor with FreeSync
LG 27UD58-B 27-Inch 4K UHD IPS Monitor with FreeSync
ASUS 28-inch 4K Freesync Gaming Monitor [MG28UQ]
ViewSonic XG2700-4K 27" 60Hz IPS 4K FreeSync Gaming Monitor
Best 4K HDR monitors
That's it folks :)