If you have been into gaming for a long time, you must have heard these buzzwords for monitor refresh rates thrown around a lot. It is a really important attribute of a monitor for gaming, alongside response time, panel type vs size. So, what does refresh rate mean, and which is better: 120 Hz vs 144 Hz?
The higher the refresh rate is, the quicker your monitor pixels refresh. It helps a lot in competitive gaming as the information appears smoother and faster on the screen. In that case, a 144Hz monitor seems a good pick for gaming.
However, 120Hz monitors are great for productivity and consuming media. So, if you are not into gaming, going the extra mile for 144Hz may not be essential.
Apart from these, there are many things to discuss regarding this particular peripheral choice. In this article, we will be discussing this dilemma explicitly to make the decision easy for you.
So without any further ado, let’s start!
What Does Hz Imply In Monitors?
The term Hz takes us back to high school days, studying science. It is the unit of frequency. If we refer to CPUs, Hz represents the clock speed frequencies. However, for monitors, Hz has nothing to do with frequencies.
Hz denotes the refresh rate for computer screens. It refers to how often the computer screen refreshes its images every second. The exact opposite of response time, a higher count of Hz represents a better monitor in terms of refresh rate.
However, Hz doesn’t tell you color accuracy and image resolution. So, the ‘the higher, the better’ concept may not work in every circumstance as you need to know about the other features of a monitor as well.
Why Is the Refresh Rate of a Monitor Important?
You may wonder why a monitor’s refresh rate is such a big deal. In short, better refresh rates induce the monitor to have better and faster transitions from one scene to another. It also makes the information readily available on-screen quicker and without causing screen tearing.
Now, what’s screen tearing? It is a situation where the video card on your system produces a higher quantity of frames that your monitor can’t handle. When the FPS produced by the system goes beyond the monitor’s refresh rate, the screen starts to tear.
Suppose your system’s GPU pushes 150 FPS in a game, whereas your monitor is only 60Hz. In this case, you may face screen tearing as the frames will either overlap or be shown in halves. It drastically drops the quality as well as the smoothness of the monitor output.
So, it would be best to have a higher refresh rate monitor, such as a 120Hz or 144Hz monitor, in your setups. It will let you enjoy the fullest potential of your gaming rig and make the experience a lot nicer.
So, if you are a gamer, you should probably invest in a higher refresh rate display. It lets you game with ease and fewer jitters on-screen, which in turn, has the potential to improve your gameplay. However, pay close attention to color reproduction and contrast as well.
What is the Difference between Refresh Rate & Frame Rate?
Many people confuse refresh rate and frame rate by assuming that they are the same. But that’s not the case at all. Refresh rate is your monitor’s attribute, whereas frame rate is basically what your system delivers to the monitor.
Frame rate is denoted as FPS (Frames Per Second). Before jumping on a higher refresh rate monitor, you must know how much FPS your gaming rig can generate. Because playing a game at 30 FPS will not be any different on a higher refresh rate monitor.
However, playing games at higher FPS on a higher refresh rate monitor is very enjoyable. It creates fewer blur effects and sharpens the screen. So, the contents on the screen appear faster and smoother.
Does Frame time Become a Factor for Gaming?
With the release of new monitors that boast a high framerate, many people wonder if frame time becomes a factor in choosing a monitor. There’s no doubt that frame time plays a big role in the overall gaming experience. But what exactly is it? And how important is it?
Frame time is the amount of time it takes for a frame to be displayed on a monitor. It is measured in milliseconds (ms). On the other hand, A monitor’s refresh rate is the number of times per second that the monitor can display a new image.
In the past, most games were rendered at 30 or 60 frames per second, but it’s now possible to render games at 100, 200, or even 300 frames per second. A higher refresh rate means the monitor can display a new image more often, and a lower refresh rate means that the monitor can display a new image less often.
It becomes a factor for a monitor when the framerate is lower than the framerate of the video signal. When this happens, the monitor will be unable to display all of the frames in the video signal, and some frames will be displayed for longer than others. It can cause the monitor image to appear “choppy” or “jerky.”
So, a monitor with a good frame time is a great way to improve your gaming experience. By providing a high refresh rate, low input lag, and superior image quality, you will be able to enjoy your games more than ever before. If you want to take your gaming to the next level, a gaming monitor with a good framerate and refresh rate is definitely the way to go.
120Hz vs 144Hz Monitor: Detailed Comparison
Before spending your precious cash on monitors, a bit of research always comes in handy. It is always recommended that you know what you are getting into before splashing a bunch of cash on that peripheral.
So, for your convenience, let’s have a comparison between 120Hz and 144Hz monitors. Here is an overview of popular monitors from both segments.
1. 120Hz Monitors
A 120Hz monitor is a straight-up upgrade from your traditional 60Hz monitor. If you’re digging for a good 120Hz monitor, you are probably coming from that old-school 60Hz. So, what’s the difference here?
A traditional 60Hz or 75Hz display is tuned to display up to 60/75 images per second. So, a 120Hz display doubles the refresh rate and appears a lot sharper and faster. 120Hz monitors also deliver better quality and sleeker modern design for dedicated gamers.
It is great for media consumption and productivity as well. The fluidity of a 120Hz panel is eye-pleasing, and it is very comfortable to work on. 120 Hz monitors produce an image in every 8th millisecond (ms).
A 120Hz monitor is quite inexpensive as well because of the gaming hype of 144Hz. So, you can get it at an affordable price.
2. 144Hz Monitors
120Hz is good, but 144 is even better. Though a jump from 120 to 144 Hz may seem small, it is a perfect upgrade. If you are a gamer who already owns a 120Hz monitor and want to upgrade it to 144Hz, don’t question your wish.
A 24Hz jump in refresh rate is quite a lot when we start talking about gaming. It may not be as large of a leap as 60 to 120 Hz, but it’s noticeable. However, for productivity or consuming media, a 120Hz monitor is okay as these don’t utilize the extra refresh rate of your monitor.
Compared to 120Hz, a 144Hz monitor produces an image in every 7th millisecond (ms), a whole millisecond faster. In gaming, that one millisecond can be the determinant of your vs your enemy’s death in a CS:GO match.
For this reason, 144Hz has made its place as the gaming benchmark in terms of monitors. It gives you a competitive advantage over gamers who are still stuck using 60Hz or 120Hz monitors.
Although refresh rate doesn’t advocate for color accuracy, contrast, response time, and resolution; good 144Hz monitors come with good features, combining the best of both worlds. So, you can play games without having to worry about other stuff.
144Hz vs 120Hz: Which Is Better For Gaming?
It is tough to decide as you may have multiple preferences. However, some criteria may help you to decide what would be best for you.
The first thing to consider is whether you are a gamer or not. If you are a gamer, you should pick up a 144Hz monitor as they are better for gaming. But if you are purchasing a monitor for productivity or media consumption, 120Hz is enough.
Then comes the issue of future upgradability. As screen tearing is a big issue, if you purchase a 120Hz monitor and upgrade your system in the future, you may be in a disadvantageous situation.
As GPUs get more powerful, the FPS count on competitive games will get much higher than that you play on today. So, having a 120Hz display and trying to play games at a much higher FPS will cause screen tearing. Here, 144Hz seems to give you a cover.
Finally, your budget size for monitors. Even after price drops recently, 144Hz monitors are still a large investment, especially from 60Hz monitors. In that case, you may consider 120Hz as an option.
However, you will be missing out on a lot if you don’t pick 144Hz for gaming. The value a 144Hz monitor provides for its price is worth it. It bumps up your experience, playability, and upgradability from 120Hz while costing a bit more.
Some Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s):
Can you see the difference between 120hz and 144hz? Yes, there is a significant difference between 120hz and 144hz, with the latter being noticeably smoother. This is especially apparent when gaming, as 144hz provides a much more fluid experience. If you’re looking for the best possible gaming experience, 144hz is the way to go.
Yes, as 144Hz monitors are smoother, sharper, and eye-pleasing, it makes using a computer very enjoyable. However, you don’t necessarily need a high refresh rate monitor for general usage. But for gaming, a high Hz monitor is always the best choice. So, with a 144Hz monitor, you can use it for general and gaming purposes.
No, it is not essential as per se. But 144Hz offers a pleasant gaming experience and a slight advantage vs non-144Hz users in a gaming environment. So, if you enjoy gaming, I would recommend getting a 144Hz monitor because, in the future, you will not regret this.
Yes, 120hz is still good for gaming. It provides a smoother experience and can help improve your gameplay. However, it is not necessary for all games, so you may want to consider what games you play before making the switch. If you are considering buying a new monitor, I recommend buying a 144Hz or more powerful monitor.
There are a few possible explanations for why your 144hz monitor is only showing 120hz. It could be that your graphics card isn’t powerful enough to support 144hz or that your HDMI cable isn’t able to carry a 144hz signal. Alternatively, it could be that your monitor isn’t actually a 144hz monitor and is instead only capable of displaying up to 120hz.
Yes, you can run 120 fps on a 144hz monitor. This is because the monitor can handle more than 120 fps. The extra frames are displayed as long as your computer can render them. Additionally, your game must be optimized for high frame rates. Otherwise, you may experience screen tearing or other issues.
So, that’s all for today. I hope you got some new information and insight about 120Hz vs 144Hz monitors. There is a lot of debate amongst gamers about whether a 120Hz or 144Hz monitor is better. Both have pros and cons, but it comes down to personal preference.
However, many people believe that the 144Hz monitor is the better option. The main reason for this is because it provides a smoother gaming experience. If you’re looking for a new gaming monitor, be sure to do your research to see which one would be the best fit for you. Good luck with your future endeavors!