Everyone dreams of a fluid, smooth, yet incredibly sharp gaming experience from their gaming monitor, but often they are deprived of this blessing due to high price tags.
What we have here are some best budget picks with their in-depth reviews. These monitors would not only be at the optimal QHD resolution but will also be equipped with a marvelous refresh rate of 144Hz or higher.
Even though QHD isn’t the highest resolution out there, it still delivers almost double the pixel count as 1080p, resulting in much higher pixel density. If paired with the correct screen size, 1440p can give you highly sharp visuals. And that’s without being too hardware demanding.
To keep it simple, this resolution and refresh rate configuration is ideal for both your gaming and your pocket.
But keep in mind that given the price segment, you might have to compromise over some incredibly premium-end features.
But anyway, without any further ado, let’s get straight into it.
The Predator XB271HU from Acer is, without a doubt, an excellent choice for gamers. But it does so without breaking the bank.
The monitor has a 144Hz refresh rate at a 2560 x 1440p resolution. But that refresh rate is easily overclockable up to 165Hz. We found that the overclock was stable even during G-Sync turned on. You heard that right; it has an Nvidia G-Sync processor to deliver tear and stutter-free gameplay.
Apart from that, the user of this monitor would also enjoy crisp image quality and wider viewing angles due to the IPS panel. But at the same time, that exact IPS panel would be responsible for causing issues with deep blacks and will display them as grey.
Ergonomically, this monitor scores quite well. It is easily adjustable in all possible configs due to its compact 27-inch size.
The speakers are kind of mediocre, but they would still suffice. These built-in speakers will do just fine unless you have your audio setup.
In terms of color gamut and coverage, it covers almost 100% of the standard sRGB color gamut. Of course, it isn’t the best-case scenario for creators, but it is still a decent pick.
The build quality is considerable for such a price segment. It is almost all plastic but still has an iconic and stiff design.
The only thing worth criticizing here would be the 4ms response time of this monitor. It isn’t bad or anything like that; it’s still fast enough for the average consumer but falls behind some of its competition.
This Acer Predator 27-inch monitor is perfect for gamers who demand high performance without costing them an arm and a leg. It boasts staggering features. Only just the limited to 4ms response time is a discontent.
- Nvidia G-Sync
- Easily overclockable refresh rate
- Decently comprehensive color coverage
- Response time isn’t the fastest
AOC is widely known for its iconic gaming monitors. Their monitors are well designed, well built, and packed with almost every feature a gamer demands.
This AOC CQ27G2 monitor is a mighty beast of a monitor. The design and build quality are fantastic. Even though almost all of the frames are made of plastic, they still feel stiff and premium.
Coming to the specs, we have a 27-inch curved display with a 144Hz refresh rate and 1ms of swift response time. That, paired with the low-input lag and flicker-free technology of this display, makes it the go-to choice for gamers. It also boasts VRR technologies of both AMD FreeSync Premium and Nvidia G-Sync Compatible.
Due to the VA panel, the contrast ratio is at the top tier, which ultimately results in deep blacks, even in dark areas.
Another thing worth praising here would be the excellent color accuracy. It covers 120% of the sRGB color gamut. That’s impressive, given the price segment and the bad reputation of VA panels in this regard.
But enough praising; regardless of the benefits of the VA panel over others, it’s still lousy at wider angles. As soon as you move at a wider angle from this monitor, the image will start to degrade. Besides that, there is no HDR support, and due to low-peak brightness, this monitor can’t put up a decent gaming experience in pitch-black areas.
The AOC CQ27G2 27-inch monitor is an overall great choice for gaming and media creation. It has a decent array of features consisting of excellent color coverage and a gaming-centric feature set. But the lack of HDR and poor viewing angles would make you think twice.
- Outstanding color gamut
- Deep Blacks
- Low-input lag
- Solid build
- Poor viewing angles
- No HDR support
Dell machines are a symbol of elegance and pure power. Their build quality and seamless designs are unrivaled.
This Dell S2721DGF gaming monitor packs a massive punch in the face of competition by providing every possible feature of this price segment.
It delivers watery smooth gameplay with its incredible 165Hz refresh rate. Paired with that is the quick 1ms response time for eliminating any trace of ghosting on the screen. Aside from that are the holy grail for competitive gamers; both AMD FreeSync premium pro and G-Sync VRR support.
Whether gaming on a console or a high-end PC, the monitor retains a remarkable response time at a peak refresh rate.
The pre-calibrated colors are miserable but once manually calibrated, there is no known issue.
There is a decent selection of ports at the back, including DisplayPort 1.4, HDMI 2.0, and multiple fast USB 3.0.
When it comes to build quality, you know who’re we talking about here. Dell puts their whole heart into making its product feel premium and sturdy.
The only two drawbacks of this monitor would be higher pricing than the competition and low contrast due to the IPS panel.
This Dell 27-inch monitor is supercharged with lots of gaming power. It can take on your desired games at max settings without breaking a sweat. But you’d make the wrong choice if you use it in dark rooms due to its low contrast.
- Excellent build quality
- Rich ports selection
- Stable response time at the peak refresh rate
- Low contrast-ratio
- Unfair pricing
Now here’s one bang-for-the-buck choice. As we know, the TUF lineup of ASUS tackles mid to high range of consumers with their power-packed yet affordable products.
This monitor house an immersive 32-inch curved VA panel.
You also get a decent plethora of features. The most significant of them will be the ELMB-Sync, which stands for “Extreme Low Motion Blur – Sync.” This feature enables the 1ms response time of this monitor with the adaptive sync to utilize the power built-in to this monitor in the best way possible.
This eradicates any ghosting, smearing, or micro-stutters while matching frame rate with your GPU. Besides that, the monitor is also equipped with the industry-standard HDR10 so the user can experience life-like visuals.
Basic specs would be similar to the competition, like a 144Hz refresh rate, 1ms (MPRT) response time, and VRR support for AMD FreeSync premium. But Nvidia fans would absolutely offend the lack of G-Sync.
Even though VA panels are far superior to IPS in terms of contrast and gray-uniformity, that could’ve been better if local dimming was present in this monitor. But unfortunately, there isn’t.
For those who prefer not to spend a fortune on monitors alone but still have a considerably powerful one, this should be their stop. The monitor outdoes its competition with its aggressive pricing yet perfectly balanced feature set.
- Quick response time even though VA panel
- 32-inch of immersive view field
- Built-in ELMB Sync
- Image degrades at wide angles
- No local dimming
The G-series of gaming monitors from Samsung has a track record for surprising consumers.
This Odyssey G5 gaming monitor is a budget-friendly monitor that still manages to deliver satisfying gameplay.
It offers a maximum of 144Hz refresh rate. The response time is surprisingly quick at 1ms (MPRT), given the lousy reputation that VA panels have had in this regard.
It has a 1000R curved screen, which matches the curvature of the human eye. This ensures delivery of immersive gameplay despite the limited 27-inch screen space.
On top of that, you’ll also get to experience G-Sync compatibility and FreeSync premium for tear-free all-out gaming bliss.
Besides that, the overall contrast will be outstanding, courtesy of the VA panel. But even though you can use it in dark areas, the low peak brightness will make it vulnerable to light glares.
When it comes to HDR, you can’t expect much from it. In fact, the difference between SDR and HDR would be negligible. That’s due to the absence of local dimming, no wide color gamut, and poor peak brightness.
Another major con of this monitor would be its poor ergonomics. There isn’t much room for adjustments and relocation.
If you desire a monitor with overall satisfying gameplay and don’t care about high-end features, this one is for you. It holds all the features needed by an average consumer. But it lacks ergonomics and HDR performance.
- Surprisingly fast response time
- Immersive curved display
- Poor HDR performance
- Crippled ergonomics
The M27Q 27-inch monitor from Gigabyte offers an all-out gaming showdown but doesn’t cost you a kidney.
It houses an IPS panel with a max 170Hz refresh rate and is the fastest on the list, 0.5ms response time. With such power, you can have fluidly smooth, ghosting-free, rich-quality gameplay.
But Gigabyte didn’t stop just there; there’s also VRR support for both technologies from Nvidia and AMD. For AMD GPU owners, FreeSync premium would be at your service, and for Nvidia fans, you’d be able to turn on Nvidia G-Sync compatible feature.
The color gamut and coverage are impressive in such a price range. Given that most monitors in this segment can’t even reach a decent enough accuracy for content creators to indulge in their creativity.
It covers almost 100% of the sRGB color gamut and 98% of the pro-grade Adobe RGB gamut.
Even though the HDR wide color gamut is lower than its advertised 92% DCI-P3, it’s still at a decent level with 87% DCI-P3 coverage. Such color coverage at this price point is unreal.
The only two points you’ll find this monitor lacking would be adjustability and contrast ratio (due to the IPS panel utilized).
If your goal is to go for the most overkill monitor, yet don’t go broke, then this Gigabyte one would be your savior, period.
- Incredibly high refresh rate
- Blazing fast response time
- Reasonable pricing
- Mind-blowing color coverage
- Lack of adjustability
This is by far in this list the most elegant-looking monitor. It has a thin bezel frameless design. Despite having a cheap price tag, this monitor doesn’t make huge compromises in its performance and design.
It allows up to 144Hz max refresh rate at 1440p resolution, all in the famous IPS panel for smooth, sharp, and color-accurate picture quality.
You’ll also have the capability of synchronizing your monitor delivered frame rate with your GPU by utilizing either AMD FreeSync Premium or Nvidia G-Sync compatible option.
The color gamut of both SDR and HDR is right on point for such priced monitor. You get to see ~125% of sRGB coverage, and while in HDR, we observed ~90% of the DCI-P3 range. So HDR would feel a little better but not too great due to the poor contrast ratio and lack of local dimming.
The conventional response time would be at 4ms, which is okay for a gaming monitor, but with a VRB response time boost, that would be brought up to 1ms. That is incredibly quick and perfect for blazing-fast response times.
The build entirely comprises generic plastic, and the stands wobble a lot. All that power could be for nothing if the user doesn’t find this monitor wobbly and physically unstable.
This Acer Nitro monitor is an elegant-looking monitor with powerful features for gamers and creators alike. Its synchronized response time and refresh rate don’t leave any trace of shadow trails and ghosting.
- Pro-grade color accuracy
- In-Sync response time and refresh rate
- Low-tier build quality
Choosing the cheapest 1440p 144Hz monitors– Buying Guide
The following points should be put into consideration whenever hunting for a budget-friendly 144Hz monitor with QHD resolution.
Now that we said the word “budget-friendly,” it’s evident that we must adhere to our budget. So the financial threshold should be considered before anything else. This will allow you to filter out the picks that fall around your budget. The specs should be after that.
Once the budget is finalized, you can check which specs would be possible under that price point. Then look for the best from them.
More often than not, you’ll find that in the budget segment, most monitors are only 27-inch. Some brands might be generous enough to increase that up to a max of 32-inches, and others would instead make the same 27-inch curved for immersive view.
And a handful of most great brands would do both. Decide what size you need for your specific requirements. If you’re only doing gaming, 27-inch will do absolutely fine. But if you intend to do some multi-tasking or creative task in-between, then going for a larger display would do the trick.
Some people have this general misconception that resolution and refresh rate are the key figures in delivering world-class gaming joy, but that’s not entirely true.
Don’t get us wrong, these two factors are immensely crucial in making a sharp and smooth picture, but the response time is as much important.
We don’t want our game character to be shadow-trailed and the image to show ghosting. It’s annoying and downright devastating on your overall game performance. You can’t shoot sharply if this problem booms up.
So, every time you go out on the hunt for a gaming monitor, response time should be an addition to consideration, alongside refresh rate and the picture resolution.
This is a feature you shouldn’t overlook, no matter what happens. The reason is that it helps in matching the frame rate of your monitor with your precious GPU and eliminates screen tearing.
The last thing you want is to go through hell to get your hands on a GPU and then not be able to utilize its power in the best way.
If your monitor is capable of either VRR technologies (FreeSync or G-Sync), then you’d be a fool if this isn’t turned on.
While you’ll find FreeSync and its high-end variants easily, even in budget picks, G-Sync would be hard to find. And you’d only get to see the lowest variant of it due to the higher cost of higher variants.
Cheapest 1440p 144Hz monitors – Frequently Asked Questions
What comprises to expect in budget monitors?
It’s obvious to have some cost-cutting features in budget options, but they all usually suffice all the basic gaming needs. There can be either lack of adjustability, poor build quality, absence of good ports, and sometimes even removing HDR and local dimming.
Are budget gaming monitors worth it?
Absolutely they are. Because they boast almost all the essential features for decent gaming, they’ll only sacrifice some super high-end features that an average consumer either doesn’t need or doesn’t care about.
What screen size to go for?
Ideally, a gamer would be easily satisfied by a 27-inch display. But for each his own, right? So, if there’s something you want to accomplish other than gaming, let’s say video editing, multitasking, or anything as such, then investing in a larger monitor would be worth it.