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The best 4K monitor for gaming 2021: best models compared and cheapest price going

The best 4K monitor for gaming 2021
(Image credit: Acer)

If you want the best pictures going then a contender for best 4K monitor for gaming is the screen to aim for. The best 4K monitor for gaming that you can buy will give you the richest and best pictures (almost) that you can - in terms of resolution, I know. It doesn't just stop at resolution and detail though as plenty of the best 4K monitors for gaming have plenty of top specs and features, too - but at a higher price, naturally. But it remains that adding one of the best 4K monitors for gaming to your setup is a surefire way to give yourself the clearest, crispest, and most vivid of in-game pictures (with a couple of caveats). In fact, no matter what you're doing on your PC, a 4K resolution will be noticeably bigger and better.

The good news is that 4K has been around long enough in gaming monitors to have come down in price and it's now affordable if we want to have the same resolution of one of the best gaming TVs, on our dedicated gaming screens. As a result, some of the best 4K monitors for gaming are actually ranked amongst the very best gaming monitors full-stop now. However, you will still find that if you can spend more, you'll get even more bells and whistles to go along with your 4K resolution - as some of the examples below still show. But the quality is undeniable. 

At the moment, as 4K resolutions usually mean 60Hz maximum refresh rate, a lot of 4K monitors, which may usually be marketed with PC-gaming specs first, are also great contenders for use with consoles. And then extending that, and as a result of the monitor market being a forward-thinking one, that there are now 4K gaming monitors appearing that are focused on console players - see the ASUS CG32UQ model below as a great example of that. As gaming setups can now be incredibly successfully multifaceted this is great news. So, strap in, and read on if you're after one of the best 4K gaming monitors and hopefully you'll find the right match here.

If you're after something different you can browse our guides to the best PS4 monitors, the best portable monitors, best G-Sync monitors, and best G-Sync compatible FreeSync monitors to complete your research. 


And because 4K gaming is now a genuine possibility due to the latest waves of Nvidia and AMD GPUs bombarding the internet's best graphics cards lists, these pages are going to be of interest (good luck!):

Graphics card stock
Buy RTX 3060 | Buy RTX 3060 Ti | Buy RTX 3070 | Buy RTX 3080 | Buy RTX 3090 | Buy AMD RX 6900 XT | Buy RX 6800

Laptop deals and stock
RTX 3060 laptop deals | RTX 3070 laptop | RTX 3080 laptop

PC deals and stock
RTX 3060 PC | RTX 3070 PC | RTX 3080 PC | RTX 3090 PC


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ASUS XG27UQ review

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ASUS XG27UQ review

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ASUS XG27UQ review

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ASUS XG27UQ monitor

The best bang-for-buck, value-to-quality 4K gaming monitor

Size: 27-inch | Resolution: 4K (3840x2160) | Refresh Rate: 144Hz | Response Time: 1ms | Panel: IPS | Ports: 2x HDMI 2.0, 2x DisplayPort, 2x USB 3.0, earphone jack

Perfect specs of 4K, 144Hz, 1ms
It's far cheaper than any other monitor with similar specs
The best way to play the latest AAA games
Quite expensive
Need a 3080 or better to unlock its full potential

Until now, 4K60fps+ gaming has been a concept only attainable by the hardcore enthusiasts who dedicate everything they have to PC gaming. Not anymore. Thanks to the recent launch of the 30-series cards from Nvidia, and AMD's RX series equivalents, it's finally affordable for those who desire it. To reach that level, you need one of the best monitors on the market, but they're usually more expensive than the graphics cards themselves.

The ASUS XG27UQ changes that entirely, bringing almost the best possible specs on a 4K screen down to a reachable tier for general PC gamers. It's still not cheap, but for the first time ever a 4K monitor with 1ms response time and a 144Hz refresh rate is below the $1k mark. Quite considerably actually, coming in at around $800/£800. It's still a hefty price tag, don't get me wrong, but it's far cheaper than the other top tier offerings.

The ASUS XG27UQ is like a gaze into what PC gaming will be like for everyone 5 to 10 years down the line. With ray tracing on, Cyberpunk 2077 had my jaw on the floor, with stunning lighting effects and texture detail throughout Night City. As did Assassin's Creed Valhalla, with the sunrays splitting the treetops. if you have a rig capable of it – seriously, don't upgrade to 4K if your graphics card is a few years old – then you will not be disappointed with this monitor.

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BenQ EL2870U

An excellent budget 4K option

Screen size: 28-inch | Panel type: TN | Aspect ratio: 16:9 | Response time: 1ms | Refresh rate: 60Hz | Weight: 12.6 lbs

Excellent price point
Lovely 4K resolution and HDR tech
Tremendous picture quality
Refresh rate maxxes out at 60Hz
No G-Sync
Very ordinary design

This is probably the best, most cost-effective, and great value way into 4K monitors you're likely to find. With its price often around or under the $300 and £200 mark, the bang for buck ratio with the BenQ EL2870U is extraordinary. The picture quality and crispness is as good as a lot of its more expensive contemporaries and is some of the best seen on a TN screen right now. Each environment type in games is handled really well with good contrasts, colors, and shades presenting whatever is asked of it; a really good balance in terms of what it's able to show.

It's got a speedy 1ms response rate, the usual 4K-monitor 60Hz refresh rate and FreeSync (no G-Sync unfortunately) is present to help smooth out pictures. You'll also get some neat BenQ-exclusive features with this monitor that others will not be able to offer: Brightness Intelligence + (B.I.+) changes the brightness and color temperature of on-screen images relative to the monitor's surroundings; and the Low Blue Light Technology is part of the company's eye-care tech that removes the harmful blue light. These aren't just clever-sounding features either, and one can definitely feel the benefit over long periods of use - I certainly found it out when I reviewed it for one of our sister sites. Overall, the EL2870U offers a wonderful deal for its price tag; genuine gaming specs on a great 4K monitor for gaming that is crisp and clear, that won't break the bank.

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Acer Predator XB273K

A very high-quality, premium 4K monitor

Screen size: 27-inch | Panel type: IPS | Aspect ratio: 16:9 | Response time: 4ms | Refresh rate: 144Hz | Weight: 15.9 pounds

Good value for a 4K, high-spec monitor
Crisp, clear and brilliant pictures
Offers fast refresh and response times
HDR is just OK
Price is slightly unattractive when sitting at four figures

While the price of the X2B273K could still, justifiably make you baulk a bit, the value it offers overall makes it our number one pick. 

It's relation, the X27 used to be the benchmark for how awesome a 4K monitor for gaming could be, but the price tag of that is even higher than the ASUS below on this list, so is firmly in the prohibitively expensive category. The XB273K, however, is a little more affordable and, as a result, offers some great value as a premium gaming monitor.

Whereas the X27 has a price tag north of 1500 dollars/pounds, the XB273K sits around the 1000 mark, but the only real difference is in the HDR: it's not quite as good in the XB273K, but that really is about the only difference we can see or that is in any way noticeable (and that's a push, as you're unlikely to inspect them next to each other!). Anyway, you'll retain all the best qualities of a super premium Acer monitor such as great picture quality, terrific color qualities, contrasts and depths, and the speeds the monitor has are still excellent for whatever game you plan on playing on it. It's also a G-Sync monitor and has all the ports you could need. A quality 4K monitor for gaming all round. As a last note, as with other monitors that have a series of miscellaneous characters defining them, you might see it listed as the XB3 or XB273KP depending on where you are in the world and what retailer you're looking at. And there are also only a couple of digits between a model that is G-Sync or G-Sync compatible which is a little annoying so make sure you interrogate the page closely when following the links here.

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ASUS ROG Swift PG27UQ

A 4K gaming monitor that has it all - for a big price

Screen size: 27-inch | Panel type: IPS | Aspect ratio: 16:9 | Response time: 4ms | Refresh rate: 144Hz | Weight: 28 pounds

Quality speeds for a 4K monitor
Cool design
Great image quality
G-Sync technology
You need to take out a second mortgage to afford it
Needs a monstrous PC to get the most out of it

You'll notice the PG27UQ's price tag straight away - it is scarily big. However, that's what happens when you cram in so many high-end features into a 4K monitor. You're also able to boost that 4K monitor for gaming past a 60Hz refresh rate and up to what we'd all like in a monitor: 144Hz or above to ensure silky smooth, speedy frame rates. Oh, and add a bit of G-Sync into that and it'll be even more of a beast. It's got HDR too. Plus it's a great size at 27-inches for any setup and to be the centerpiece of a multi-monitor setup. These features really add up to a monitor that is, if you've got a near-unlimited budget, the best 4K monitor to go for.

The design is stylish too with RGB motifs and displays tastefully implemented, and its collection of an HDMI 2.0 input, DisplayPort 1.4, 3.5mm audio, and two USB 3.0 ports, should be enough to keep you well connected. Could maybe have done with an extra HDMI port, though.

The 'downside' to the monitor is perhaps not in the monitor itself. Such are its specs that you'll need an awfully powerful machine. It'd take something seriously impressive to run games smoothly at 4K resolution and at more than 100 fps to take advantage of the refresh rate. However, if you can achieve this, combining this monitor with such a machine will give you an incredible visual experience. And if the price of it ever comes down drastically, you shouldn't hesitate.

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ASUS CG32UQ

The best console 4K monitor going

Screen size: 32-inch | Panel type: VA | Aspect ratio: 16:9 | Resolution: 3840x2160 | Response time: 5ms | Weight: 20 lbs net

Incredible picture quality
Great color range, depth and contrasts
Full 4K and HDR goodness
A bit pricey

It's refreshing to see monitors dedicated or at least aimed at, console gaming making solid appearances now. And this is a seriously great console monitor. The CG32UQ is a console-focused gaming monitor and has serious gaming pedigree and stock behind it coming from ASUS.

It is a little expensive but you get some serious monitor, tech, and performance for your money. Its main headline, if you will, is that it is a 32-inch 4K VA-panel monitor - this is incredibly useful, right off the bat, as it'll make transitioning from a 4K TV that many consoles are currently hooked up to, easy to undertake. You'll still get the same resolution and, extra importantly, the effects of HDR as the CG32UQ has a DisplayHDR 600 rating. This HDR excellence is backed up by glorious colors and contrasted gained by the monitor's 95% DCI-P3 rating and contrast ratio of 3000:1.

On top of that, you will still get some of ASUS's quality monitor techs as standard: FreeSync, GameFast mode, AuraSync lighting, flicker-free pictures, and a very handy remote control. For a full verdict check out my ASUS CG32UQ review, but this is definitely the best console monitor you can buy right now.

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Acer Predator XB321HK

A great no-nonsense 4K monitor

Screen size: 32-inch | Panel type: IPS | Aspect ratio: 16:9 | Response time: 4ms | Refresh rate: 60Hz | Weight: 24.91 lbs

Great size to soak up the 4K resolution
Decent colors and contrasts despite no HDR
G-Sync compatible
No HDR

If you're not fussed about getting the all singing and all dancing approach to colors but do want to keep hold of the glory of 4K resolution then this is a good pick. The Acer Predator XB321HK offers those looking for a premium panel a slightly stripped back variant, but one that retains quality, offers a great size - 32-inches - and is from a reputable maker. Its IPS panel means you'll still get some of the best picture quality and viewing angles available in a monitor, while it being a G-Sync and the 4ms response time make it a genuinely good gaming monitor for all kinds of games.

If you're looking to transition from a large TV to a smaller, dedicated gaming setup or room, then the XB321HK is a perfect contender to get you in - it's gaming-focused, it's larger than most 4k monitors for gaming, and so closer to a TV size, and it's got Acer's cool design and gaming specs all over/in it. It might feel a little big on the desk but no one really complains about a screen being 'too big': it'll make a great centerpiece for a multi-panel setup or for those that don't always sit right on top of their desks, so to speak. 

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BenQ EW3280U

A tremendous 4K monitor entertainment as well as games

Screen size: 32-inch | Panel type: IPS | Aspect ratio: 16:9 | Response time: 5ms | Refresh rate: 60Hz | Weight: 17.85 lbs

BenQ picture quality
Great HDR and supporting features
Exceptional colours and contrasts
Demands a large desk setup
A little pricey

If you want a monitor that can do a bit of everything in glorious 4K, then the BenQ EW3280U could be the 4K monitor for gaming for you. It's 4K nature, combined with its size, and colors and IPS panel make it a great all-rounder. It won't offer the mad speeds that non-4K monitors can offer, of course, but as 60Hz experiences go, this is great, and the overall picture quality, HDR and contrasts, and richness of every shade, as well as the detailed, grain-less images, are a big win. Its price tag might make it more of a contender during sales but this offering from BenQ is great and they really have proved they can run with the usual suspects again. It does need a bit of room on the desk but, largely, it's very much worth it.

If you want a 32-inch big one when it comes to 4K monitors for gaming, then this is a very strong contender - particularly if you'll use the monitor for entertainment as well as general PC use. As a result, this is a strong contender for a top 4K monitor for gaming, but its niche might just lie elsewhere right now: it might just be the best PS4 monitors I've tested recently too - it'll feature in that round-up of ours imminently, I'm sure.

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LG 27UL650

A terrific HDR monitor option from 4K TV specialists

Screen size: 27-inch | Panel type: IPS | Aspect ratio: 16:9 | Response time: 5ms | Refresh rate: 60Hz | Weight: 13.90 lbs

Great color accuracy
FreeSync compatibility 

Offering another budget-level entry point into the 4K monitor market, the LG 27UL650 is an IPS panel that has excellent levels of color, contrast, and low input lag. The former of these is manifested in excellent color accuracy and the addition of HDR10. This means that if you're after a 4K monitor that will serve you well for creative tasks, design, and general everyday use. Yup, you'll still have the 60Hz refresh rate but that's fast becoming acceptable if the overall package is good value - which this is.

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Philips Momentum 436M6VBPAB

A TV-sized, PC-gaming focused contender

Screen size: 43-inch | Panel type: MVA | Aspect ratio: 16:9 | Response time: 4ms | Refresh rate: 60Hz | Weight: 32 lbs

Great TV-esque size for a monitor
Robust design
Great for spacious setups
Picture loses quality and becomes grainy close up
Just a bit too big for normal desk-bound gaming

If bigger equals better for you, then you should at least consider this 43-inch Philips behemoth. It's basically TV-sized and you'll need to treat as such as sitting too close is a bit much and sitting a bit farther away from it is ideal. Still, it's got a beefy enough design and build to bolster its 'hard' credentials.

While it's TV-sized, the Philips Momentum 426M6VBPAB (catchy isn't it?) does put gaming first - and particularly PC gaming. There's a great range of ports going: HDMI 2.0; USB-C; DisplayPort; and mini DisplayPort. It also has Philips' popular-on-the-TVs Ambiglow technology which projects a glowing light out the back of the screen according to what’s shown on the front of the screen. 

Getting close to gaming credentials within its panel is an MVA-type panel with a 4ms response time and that usual-for-4K-screens 60Hz refresh rate. Given its size, it may appeal to those who also have a console hooked into their setup alongside a PC. It's got enough to make it appealing still, and certainly a worthy contender when choosing a 4K monitor for gaming, but if you want something TV-sized with gaming credentials, you may want to keep an eye on those LG TVs which are receiving G-Sync support.

I'm one of the Hardware Editors for GamesRadar+, and I take care of a whole host of gaming tech reviews, buying guides, and news and deals content that pops up across GamesRadar+. I'm also a qualified landscape and garden designer so do that in my spare time, and lean on it to write about games' landscapes and environments too.