If you’ve been an avid PC gamer for the past 5 years or so, you might be familiar with the term V-Sync and if you’re not, it’s high time you are. Essentially what V-Sync does for a monitor is that it synchronises the frames being displayed so that the top half and bottom half of the screen produces an entire frame before they are shown on the monitor. Without V-Sync, you will inevitably experience something known as screen tearing or stuttering. Fortunately, the latest and best gaming monitors have only slightly sub-par display qualities despite being built with a TN panel in mind. The ultimate gaming monitor, on the other hand, must certainly have the G-Sync feature for it to truly be competitive.
These issues are extremely old and widely known but there didn’t seem to be a solution for many years. Well, until now anyway. G-Sync monitors are capable of removing these screen tearing issues and also improve the input lag problem substantially. This technology by Nvidia has found its way into many of the best gaming monitors including the Asus PG278Q ROG Swift and several other top end gaming brands like BenQ.
The first WQHD G-Sync monitor (Asus ROG Swift) was a 27″ gaming monitor though, and it was extremely pricey. This was the single largest deterrence that players met when deciding on which monitors to purchase. Since then, 24″ G-Sync monitors have surfaced and one of the best in this class is the BenQ XL2420G. An improved version over its predecessors, the XL2420Z and below, this gaming monitor is a beast with its superb 144 Hz refresh rates and lightning fast response time of below 2 ms. Upon testing it on multiple games at maximum settings using a single GTX 980, the results were simply amazing.
Screen tearing was non-existent and the input lag was minimal. This, when compared to IPS monitors, was a godsend because IPS monitors generally included a lot more input lag (20+ ms for 27 inch). There is a slight technical disadvantage in terms of these types of monitors however. For now, G-Sync only works when you use DisplayPort. HDMI does not work in this regard but most of the newer graphics card will run on DisplayPort so that shouldn’t pose a problem for now. We tested some of the latest games in different genres on our newly purchased ROG Swift and suffice to say, we’re extremely pleased with it. Averaging about 80 frames per second at the absolute maximum settings, Dying Light never looked better. Movements were superbly fluid and images that flashed past looked as if they were still. There wasn’t any blur or stuttering that we noticed, which is impressive for such a fast-moving game.
I’ll be the first to keep my fingers crossed if the gaming companies decide to build an IPS G-Sync monitor though. Until then, we’re stuck with $800 TN-paneled monsters till the next technology cycle comes around and sweeps us off our feet again.