G-Sync On a Budget? It's Possible With These Cheap Gaming Monitors

G-Sync gaming monitors are notorious for two things: giving you an extremely smooth gameplay experience and being very expensive. Unfortunately, those are the breaks, as G-Sync monitors fall under a greater amount of scrutiny and quality assurance from Nvidia, not to mention the costly proprietary G-Sync module.Well, I should say those were the breaks, as more recently, the cost of G-Sync displays has come down precipitously. What’s more, Nvidia has enabled G-Sync to work on FreeSync at the beginning of the year, vastly expanding the compatibility of Nvidia’s VRR technology with a much larger group of affordable FreeSync gaming monitors.

If you’re using an Nvidia graphics card, you owe it yourself to get the best G-Sync gaming monitor you can afford, especially if it’s one of Nvidia’s latest Turing RTX or GTX GPUs. We’ve combed the bottom of the barrel to ensure you’re only looking at the best and most affordable G-Sync displays that won’t empty your wallet or be complete crap.

TL;DR – These are the Best Budget G-Sync Monitors:

1. LG 27GL650F-B

Best Budget G-Sync Gaming Monitor

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Our Pick

LG 27GL650F-B

On Amazon

Choosing a budget gaming monitor often comes with compromises, but with the LG 27GL650F-B it hardly feels like you’re making any sacrifices at all. First off you get a pretty substantially sized 27-inch display, which might only be 1080p in resolution but it’s an IPS panel with a 1ms response time. What’s more you get a quick 144Hz refresh rate and 400-nits of peak brightness.

If it weren’t for this display’s only simulated 8-bit color, the LG 27GL650F-B would be a great screen for HDR gaming. That said, it’s a very well rounded G-Sync gaming monitor and it only costs about $300 so your wallet will be happy too.

2. Dell 24 Gaming Monitor (S2419HGF)

Ultra Cheap G-Sync Gaming Monitor

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Dell 24 Gaming Monitor

On Amazon

What’s that, you want something truly cheap? Well, look no further than the Dell 24 Gaming Monitor (S2419HGF), which comes in at an incredibly cheap price of $250. Now this display will serve all your basic needs for PC gaming with its Full HD resolution, 1ms response time, and a surprisingly high 144Hz refresh rate. But don’t expect to write home about much else you can get out of this gaming monitor.

The Dell 24 Gaming Monitor only features a peak brightness of 350-nits, which is pretty normal for most display, and it can only display 16.7 colors with serviceable accuracy. Still for the little money this gaming monitor asks for, you’re getting some decent image quality and a genuine G-Sync experience.

3. Acer Nitro XF252Q

Best Budget 1080p G-Sync Gaming Monitor

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Acer Nitro XF252Q

On Amazon

The Acer Nitro XF252Q is a pretty special monitor that can regularly be found for about $300, which makes it one of the cheapest G-Sync monitor currently available. Don’t think it’s a slouch, though. This 1080p display sports a TN panel with a 0.3ms response time and 240Hz refresh rate. With specs like those, this is a gaming monitor tuned specifically for competitive gaming and Esports.

But if you’re just as interested in looking at a pretty picture, the Nitro XF252Q also happens to be an HDR-ready display as well. This means you get a peak brightness of 400-nits and it’s surprisingly color-accurate too.

4. Viotek GFT27DB

Best Budget 1440p G-Sync Gaming Monitor

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Viotek GFT27DB

On Amazon

Viotek is probably not a brand you’ve heard of before, but I can assure you that the GFT27DB (read our review) is one of the cheapest and best 1440p display that supports G-Sync. That said, it only comes at this low price because it’s not a true G-Sync monitor, but rather it’s a Freesync gaming monitor with G-Sync compatibility. Don’t worry though, we tested the Viotek GFT27DB monitor thoroughly and it had no problems with working with G-Sync as well.

This monitor also offers a speedy 144Hz refresh rate and quick 1ms response time. Despite utilizing a TN panel, the Viotek GFT27DB also renders a surprisingly wide color gamut and deep black levels.

5. Asus TUF Gaming VG27AQ

Best Budget G-Sync Compatible Gaming Monitor

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Asus TUF Gaming VG27AQ

On Amazon

If you only enough money and space for one gaming monitor in your life, why not make it something that’ll work seamlessly with all your devices. The Asus TUF Gaming VG27AQ is a G-Sync Compatible Gaming Monitor, which means its a FreeSync gaming monitor that’s been certified by Nvidia to work with its form of variable refresh rate technology. In essence, this gaming monitor will give you a tear-free, smooth gaming experience no matter if you connect it to a Nvidia-powered gaming PC or Microsoft’s latest consoles.

Of course, it also helps that the Asus TUF Gaming VG27AQ is one of the most attractively well-rounded gaming monitors on the market right now. Between its IPS panel giving you excellent colors and a 1ms response time, this display is both fast and gorgeous to look at.

6. Samsung CRG5

Best Budget 240Hz G-Sync Gaming Monitor

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Esports demands the fastest gaming monitors around with absolutely zero tearing. Lucky for you the Samsung CRG5 handles both of these things with aplomb and for not much money to boot.

With this monitor, you’ll see everything you do in gameplay out in buttery smooth animation. Instead of seeing motion blurring or tearing every single frame you see on this display will be perfectly crisp and highly detailed which is perfect for fast-paced, twitchy games. Better yet this display supports both FreeSync and G-Sync.

7. Dell 27 Gaming Monitor (S2719DGF)

Go bigger with this G-Sync Compatible Gaming Monitor

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Dell 27 Gaming Monitor

On Amazon

If you can find the Dell S2716DG (read our review) for around $450 it’s a smokin’ deal. The 27-inch TN panel has a response time of 3ms, but setting the response time in the menus to Fast gets that down to the 1ms Holy Grail target.

The 144Hz refresh rate with G-Sync enabled is fantastic and runs very well at its native 2,560 x 1,440 resolution. It’s also a great resolution for this panel size, making for easy readability without the need for any scaling. It even has a USB 3.0 hub as well.

8. Acer Nitro XV273K

4K HDR at a Reasonable Price

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Acer Nitro XV273K

On Amazon

The Acer Nitro XV273K (read our review) isn’t a true G-Sync monitor but rather a G-Sync Compatible one, but you won’t really care after you see its 4K HDR picture. This monitor costs a pretty penny for $770, but considering you have to spend upwards of a $1000 more for its closest competitor, the Nitro XV273K seems like a downright steal.

In fact, the Nitro XV273K is practical, the only affordable 4K HDR gaming monitor available right now. It doesn’t just look good on paper either. It’s HDR characteristics add more character to shadows while the enhanced peak brightness makes things pop. However, be wary of using this display in SDR mode as things can look more grayed out.

What to look for in a Cheap G-Sync Monitor

Screen tearing is just about the most upsetting thing that can happen to you while gaming. Previously the solution to this problem was to simply enable V-Sync in your game, which synced the output of the video card to your monitor’s maximum refresh rate, which was usually 60Hz.

Unfortunately, V-Sync introduces its own set of issues including increased input lag and capping the frame rate to a maximum of 60 fps—or 30 fps if you’re running below that.

Nvidia was unhappy with this solution (just like the rest of us), so it created G-Sync a few years ago to solve these issues. It locks your monitor’s refresh rate to the current frame rate of your graphics card and eliminates screen tearing, but isn’t limited to any particular refresh rate. It can work at 38Hz, 45Hz, and so on.

In general, it works really well, but there are requirements. You need an Nvidia graphics card (minimum of a GTX 650 Ti Boost) and a G-Sync-enabled monitor connected by DisplayPort 1.2 or newer, and you need to turn it on in the Nvidia control panel software.

All G-Sync monitors have a proprietary G-Sync module in them that allows it to work, and with the right monitor and video card, you could get synced frame rates up to 240Hz.

G-Sync monitors tend to be around $100 to $200 more than the comparable FreeSync panels (which is attributed to the required module), so ‘cheap’ has a slightly different connotation here. That said, the best cheap G-Sync monitors let you experience a tear-free gaming experience without having to break the bank.

With the right monitor and video card, you could get synced frame rates up to 240Hz

Better yet Nvidia has decreed that some Freesync monitors can be G-Sync Compatible, making them an amazingly affordable way to sidestep your way to a completely tear-free and smooth gaming experience with an Nvidia-powered system.

While Freesync monitors don’t include a dedicated G-Sync display module, Nvidia has tested over 400 displays and certified that at least 50 of them will definitely work with G-Sync. That said, our own testing has revealed there are even more compatible monitors out there.

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Kevin Lee is IGN’s Hardware and Roundups Editor. Follow him on Twitter @baggingspam

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