The PS5 is a beast of a gaming console that has had somewhat of a decent year. But with stunning titles like God of War Ragnarok, Horizon: Forbidden West, and Elden Ring just around the corner, 2022 promises to be a next-gen experience you don’t want to miss.
For these games and many more, you’ll want a display that allows the console’s ten teraflops to shine in full strength. And that’s where a 4k gaming monitor for PS5 comes in.
What to look for when buying a gaming monitor for PS5
The transition to next-gen is all about smoother gameplay and more immersive graphics. These can be fully experienced on a quality monitor. While getting one, you’ll want to consider the resolution, maximum refresh rate, and response time of your display.
1. The display resolution
The PS5’s biggest feature is on paper, its ability to run games at a native 4K at 120fps. This is largely due to its powerful 10.28 teraflops GPU, which will allow for the development of high-fidelity games over the console’s lifecycle. And if you’ve ever seen a 4K video, you know how immersive these titles will be.
Already, games like Far Cry 6, Assassins Creed Valhalla, Ghost of Tsushima (Directors Cut), and Demon Souls (remastered) are giving us a glimpse of what the console can do. But you can’t fully experience these, and many upcoming titles, on just any display.
Sony states that the “PS5 can output resolutions up to 2160p (4K UHD) when connected to a 4K display.” Thus, the best gaming monitor for the PS5 is a 4K monitor.
What is 4k?
We categorize screen resolutions into HD (1280 x 720 pixels), FHD (1920 x 1080 pixels) and UHD (3840 x 2160 pixels). 4K displays are UHD and usually have at least 8 million active pixels. By comparison, they have four times as many pixels as a full HD (1080p) screen.
This means that a 4K monitor can hold four pixels in the space that a 1080p monitor of the same size has one, allowing them a much higher image clarity and sharpness when displaying materials with a UHD resolution.
2. The screen’s refresh rate
The refresh rate is the frequency with which a particular display updates the image on the screen. Essentially, it’s the number of times the display draws a new picture in a second. It is measured in Hertz (Hz), and the faster it is, the smoother your gameplay experience will be.
The monitor’s refresh rate is important because the PS5 can run games at a smooth 120 fps, something you’ll need at least a 120Hz of refresh rate to experience fully.
Don’t rush though; most games currently on the PS5 run at 60 fps. Only the new Call of Duty Vanguard can achieve 120 fps, which is also only limited to certain modes. So, you may get away with using a 60Hz monitor for now.
3. Response time and input lag
Response time is the time a display’s pixels take to change from one shade of gray to another or from black to white. A quick response time eliminates image ghosting in fast-paced games, but the ideal speed for a monitor will depend on its maximum refresh rate. Generally;
|Monitor Refresh Rate (Hz)||Maximum Monitor Response Time (ms)|
On the other hand, input lag is the delay between initiating a command and the corresponding action on the screen. The higher the refresh rate of the display, the lower the input lag. This is an essential factor in fast-paced competitive games.
4. The HDMI port: 2.1 vs. 2.0
The HDMI port may seem like an insignificant afterthought. But if you aim to get the most out of your PS5’s video and audio interface, you’ll want to put some more thought into it. And that’s where you get HDMI 2.1 and HDMI 2.0.
The latter is the older HDMI technology. It was introduced in 2013 and had an 18Gbps transmission bit rate. This gave it native support for 4K and 8K resolutions at 60 fps and 30 fps respectively. It also offered HDR support (more on that later). And while it’s no longer the industry standard, some TVs and monitors still ship with HDMI 2.0.
On the other hand, HDMI 2.1 was introduced in 2017 and is the current HDMI standard. It has a 48Gbps transmission bit rate that allows native support for 4K at 120 fps and 8K at 60 fps. It also offers Dynamic HDR support, which is basically HDR on steroids.
Overall, HDMI 2.1 supports higher resolutions at better frame rates than HDMI 2.0. It is the default for PS5 consoles and should, in theory, allow the console to output 4K 120 fps at some point in its life cycle. But to enjoy such high levels of fidelity and smoothness, you’ll need a gaming monitor with a similar HDMI port.
5. Backlight technology; QLED vs. OLED
Backlight tech isn’t the most important consideration for most people. But if you’re spending top dollar on a gaming monitor, it’s worth a thought- do you pick QLED or OLED (mini LED is also an option, but these are still far from being adopted and thus, worth a fortune).
QLED displays use a single point of light to illuminate a screen segment. Traditionally, this didn’t allow much control over which segment was lit, resulting in blooming and color bleeding. Blooming is an effect caused when the brighter parts of an image slightly light the surrounding dimmer areas.
Modern QLED displays have mitigated blooming and color bleeding but still fall behind other technologies. One of these superior screen technologies is OLED.
OLED- in full Organic LED- displays are lit by many tiny diodes that emit their own light when current runs through them. Each pixel practically lights itself, allowing for more control over the screen’s lighting.
Thus, when an OLED display is showing black on a screen section, it turns off the pixels in that area. This allows darker tones to be as dark as possible without suffering from blooming and color bleeding.
Generally, OLED displays offer sharper images than QLED. The picture quality is much more stunning and even better on a 4K display. And while this makes for a great gaming experience, it also results in OLED displays costing a lot more than QLED.
What is HDR? Do I need it?
HDR means high dynamic range, and to understand it, you must first understand dynamic range;
- Dynamic range refers to the extremes of how dark and bright a display can get and how much detail can be shown in between. Generally, the higher the dynamic range, the higher the detail.
- HDR is high dynamic range. Compared to older video signals, HDR video provides more information on color and brightness across a wider range. As a result, it can get brighter, darker and produce richer colors while showing more shades in between.
Since the PS5 aims for an immersive graphical experience, it supports HDR content. This allows it to push out images with an incredible amount of detail.
However, HDR video can only be presented on a display that supports the information contained in the signal. So if you’re looking for an immersive experience on your PS5, buying an HDR-compatible monitor is the way to go.
Gaming Monitor Vs. TV?
This is a pretty common question among people shopping for a gaming display. Do I get a gaming monitor or a TV? Well, gaming monitors outperform TVs in every gaming-related metric relative to the price. Overall, the average monitor offers a higher resolution, faster refresh rate, lower input lag, and faster response times than a TV of the same price.
Best 4k gaming monitor for PS5: Our recommendations
Here is a quick look at some of our favorite PS5 gaming monitors based on the above criteria.
1) LG 27UK650-W
This LG monitor is the perfect companion for those after the best value viewing experience. For less than $500, you get a crispy 4K 27” display, two HDMI ports with HDR support, and an acceptable 60Hz refresh rate. The relatively low refresh rate means that the monitor relies on AMD FreeSync screen to eliminate image ghosting.
The monitor is LED, but an IPS panel for that matter. This allows it to provide better color and viewing angles than your typical QLED display. Combine this with the 4K resolution, and you’ll be immersed and entertained.
|You may like||You may not like|
|4K||60Hz refresh rate|
|Great value||27″ screen|
2) Samsung U32J590
The Samsung U32J590 is a gaming monitor that should give you a decent gaming experience on a budget. Retailing for as little as $350, the monitor comes with a generous 32” of screen real estate with UHD resolution to provide incredible detail on all your PS5 games.
The 60Hz screen refresh rate may be an issue, but the monitor incorporates AMD FreeSync to eliminate screen tearing.
|You’ll like||You may not like|
|4 ms response time|
3) Gigabyte M28U
The Gigabyte M28U almost ticks everything you want in a gaming monitor. This makes it a great midrange option for your PS5. It comes with a crispy 28” UHD IPS display with a whopping 144Hz refresh rate further supported by an adaptive sync technology.
Therefore, your PS5 gaming sessions should be both immersive and smooth.
|You’ll like||You may not like|
|1 ms response time|
4) Asus TUF Gaming VG289Q
If you don’t mind spending a little more on a gaming monitor as you did on your PS5, this Asus monitor is as worth it as it gets. The gaming monitor feature’s a crispy 4K 28” display with a 144Hz refresh rate and an instantaneous 1 ms response time. It also comes with HDMI 2.1, which supports native 4K 120fps gameplay to let you get the most out of your PS5.
You also get HDR support and AMD FreeSync Premium with the display.
|You’ll like||You may not like|
|4K 120fps on PS5||Relatively expensive|
Choosing a gaming monitor for your PS5 is not quite straightforward. But now that you know what to look for and have glimpsed our top recommendations, things should get significantly easier.
Should I get a 4k 60Hz monitor or a 1080p 144Hz monitor for PlayStation 5?
If you want a gaming monitor on a budget, you’ll probably have to choose between the resolution and refresh rate. This is purely a matter of preference. Generally though, a casual PS5 gamer will find a 4K 60Hz monitor the most enjoyable due to the stunning visuals presented at a respectable frame rate. But if you game competitively in games like COD, BF, Fortnite, e.t.c., you don’t have the time to admire graphics and you need all the speed you can get. Thus, a 1080p 1140Hz monitor is your best option.
Can we enjoy the PS5 without a 4K monitor?
Absolutely. Visuals are not everything, and if you value performance over graphics, you may actually enjoy gaming on a lower resolution display more.