For casual gaming, 60Hz is plenty. 144Hz is for those who are a little more adamant and picky about their gaming. People that game at 144Hz are a finicky bunch, and the vast majority of them state that the difference between 144fps and 60fps is negligible. Of course, they’re wrong, but the vast majority of gamers agree with them.
There are even some avid players who believe 60Hz is sufficient. There are a lot of individuals out there who play at 4K at 60Hz and don’t bother to try to get their settings to 144fps.
So you always hear people talking about those fancy 144Hz displays, but not sure what they are?
In most cases, the 144Hz monitor is worth the money for gamers who like competitive multiplayer games. However, unless you are willing to spend more than $600 for a 144Hz display, you will have to deal with poor visual quality on all the cheaper displays.
The gaming monitor with a 144Hz refresh rate has been all the rage in recent years. They are very common now, and the price is very affordable, but not everyone believes them.
So is a 144Hz monitor worth it or is it just an outdated gimmick?
This is the question we intend to answer in this article by reviewing the features 144Hz displays bring and some potential shortcomings that may make you want to rethink your choice.
What is the Refresh Rate?
In Hertz (Hz), the refresh rate is the number of frames per second that the monitor can display. In other words, it determines the maximum gaming FPS you can get.
Of course, your GPU can output more frames, but the display refresh rate ultimately limits the number of frames displayed in real-time. Most modern displays have a standard 60Hz refresh rate, but 144Hz has become the new standard for PC gamers, and now we will understand exactly why.
Advantages of the 144Hz Display
When we talk about the advantages of a display with a higher refresh rate, we mainly focus on the advantages of a higher frame rate compared to a low frame rate. The more frames displayed per second, the smoother and faster the game experience. In addition, this means less motion blur, which is good news for people who are prone to motion sickness.
But more importantly, the reason competitive gamers like such a high refresh rate is that they can provide a competitive advantage. In other words, more frames mean more data displayed per second, which in turn leads to slightly better response time.
At first glance, this may not seem so important, but it can make a big difference in a tense multiplayer scene in an instant.
This answers the question of “60Hz vs 144Hz” very well, in terms of performance. However, to maintain accessibility in the lower price range, 144Hz displays usually have to make an inevitable trade-off, which may end up being a deal-breaker for some gamers.
Disadvantages of the 144Hz Display
The main disadvantage is the price. There are some more affordable 144Hz displays, but this is for a special reason: they all use lower-quality TN panels or VA panels. There are also 144Hz IPS screens that can provide better visual effects, but these screens are much more expensive.
The TN panel has its own set of flaws. Their low price and unprecedented speed make them so popular in 144Hz gaming monitors. However, its most notable flaws are poor color reproduction and limited viewing angles. The viewing angle is not a big problem, because you always point the monitor directly at the desktop, but the colors produced by the TN panel tend to look pale and washed out.
On the other hand, in terms of color, VA panels are relatively balanced with IPS panels. However, their pixel response time is indeed slightly higher, which may introduce some motion blur and make the display feel slower or even slightly responsive.
Then there is the issue of frame rate. Unless your GPU can drive an appropriately high frame rate, there is no advantage to a high refresh rate. Of course, if we talk about esports games like Counter-Strike: Global Offensive or Overwatch, this is relatively easy to achieve, and these games are not very demanding.
However, unless you are running a high-end graphics card (or multiple), GPUhungry’s AAA games are unlikely to achieve such a high refresh rate without rejecting certain settings.
Is there a difference between 144Hz?
This is an enemy player in a first-person shooter game and you are trying to take him down.
Now if you try to shoot a target on a 60Hz screen, you will shoot a target that doesn’t exist at all because your screen doesn’t refresh the frame fast enough to keep up with fast-moving objects/targets. You can see this: How will it affect your kill/kill score in FPS games?
However, to take advantage of the high refresh rate, your FPS (frames per second) must be equally high. Therefore, please make sure you have a powerful enough CPU/GPU to meet the refresh rate you are looking for.
In addition, a higher frame rate/refresh rate can also reduce input delay and make screen tearing less obvious, which also significantly improves the immersion and responsiveness of the game.
Although you may not feel or notice any problems when playing games on a 60Hz monitor now, if you have a 144Hz screen and play on it for a while, and then switch back to 60Hz, you will notice that something is missing.
Other video games with unlimited frame rates and your CPU / GPU can run at higher frame rates will also feel smoother. In fact, at 144Hz, simply moving the cursor on the screen will be more satisfying.
However, if you primarily prefer slower-paced games and more graphics, we recommend that you use a higher resolution monitor instead of a high refresh rate monitor.
Ideally, if you have a gaming monitor that provides a high refresh rate and high resolution, it will be the best, but these are more expensive.
The 240Hz monitor provides smoother performance, but the jump from 144Hz to 240Hz is not as obvious as 60Hz to 144Hz. Therefore, we only recommend 240Hz and 360 Hz monitors for serious and professional gamers.
Other things to Consider
In addition to the refresh rate of the monitor, if you want to get the best performance in a fast-paced game, you should also pay attention to its response speed.
Therefore, although a higher refresh rate can provide a smoother motion definition if the pixels cannot be converted from one color to another promptly (response time) at these refresh rates, visible traces/reduces will appear. Shadow and motion blur.
This is why gamers choose a gaming monitor with a GtG response time of 1 millisecond or more.
Fast TN displays are the most affordable, while IPS and VA display with a 1ms GtG response time are more expensive (~$350-more than $550).
Some gaming monitors use background strobe technology to solve the ghosting problem, which provides CRT-like motion clarity.
Last but not least, you may want to buy a gaming monitor with variable refresh rates (VRR) technology such as FreeSync or GSYNC.
Is the 144Hz gaming monitor worth it?
Now, let us return to the core question: Is the 144Hz display worth it? Is it worth the money?
Well, considering all the above, the answer will be very subjective. Does it depend on which one you prefer: visual quality or performance? Of course, if you are fascinated by both, you can buy a 144Hz IPS monitor for more than $600, but not everyone will invest that much.
As far as we are concerned, we will leave the 144Hz monitor for those who primarily play multiplayer games and want every possible advantage. At the same time, 60Hz displays with IPS or VA panels will provide better visuals at similar prices, not to mention possible HDR support.
However, as always, preferences vary, and you should choose the type of monitor that you think is best suited to your needs and tastes.