Our team scoured the market to locate affordable displays, and we ultimately determined the best gaming monitor under 150 dollars is the AOC G2460V6. We decided on this model due to its sleek design, competitive features (FHD, FreeSync, 75Hz, 1ms) and variety of video connections including DisplayPort.
The runner-up choice for sub-$150 gaming displays is Acer's KG241Q which checks most of the same boxes of features and performance from AOC's model. The primary differences between this and our top choice is the change from LED to LCD and a lack of DisplayPort.
For those with a tight wallet where every dollar counts, our top budget gaming monitor under $150 is the ASUS VS247H-P. While this model is a few years old now, it still offers competitive features and reliable performance despite the lack of any bells and whistles like FreeSync, DisplayPort or a 75Hz panel (this is capped at 60Hz).
Editor's Choice & Best Overall
Our top $150 display offers a sleek look, competitive specs and excellent performance.
The G2460V6 from AOC covers a lot of ground in the gaming monitor world despite its low price. With competitive features like FreeSync and a fast 75Hz panel, 1ms response rate and inclusion of DisplayPort, it can't be beaten at under 150 dollars.
Our second $150 monitor choice harnesses similar performance with an IPS display.
Compared to the AOC model, this LG monitor matches up well across the board. However, its lack of a VESA mount, or adjustable stand makes it a less appealing buy for some.
An affordable sub-$150 monitor that provides good gaming performance.
One of the lower-end gaming monitors from BenQ, the GL2580H offers a slightly larger display and reasonable specs despite a few limitations in panel performance.
Pricing as of 10/4/18*
This buying guide was written for gamers who are looking to purchase a solid gaming monitor with a budget between $100 to $150 and save money.
However, a product guide like this takes a lot of time and effort to ensure the highest quality of our information and recommendations. To pay for our hosting and to help keep the lights on, we must monetize this article by way of display advertising and affiliate links to retail partners which may earn us a small commission for referred sales.
Keep in mind, these recommendations were chosen based on our knowledge of the product/industry without any outside influences or revenue potential taken into consideration. We pride ourselves on integrity and will never stray you in the wrong direction to make more money.
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For those who that want to get the most out of this free guide, we highly recommend you read this article in its entirety. We will cover many of your potential questions or concerns about buying a gaming monitor.
If you finish consuming all of this information and you still find yourself with an outlying question or concern, then you can utilize the comments section below this article. Our team will do our best to respond to your comments with a helpful answer, recommendation or advice based on the information that you provide.
The Benefits Of Reliable Gaming Display
Chances are you know the benefits of buying a gaming display over any other cheap monitors, but in case you don't, we have covered three of the main basics below:
- Compatibility - in the modern age of gaming, you are either playing on a console or a PC. In the vast majority of cases, manufacturers will design their gaming monitors to offer support for the most popular connections found within modern graphics cards and consoles. In today's terms, the two most popular supported formats are HDMI and DisplayPort.
- Clarity - with modern gaming graphics being of such a high-quality, it is important that you purchase a monitor that can handle high resolution graphics. This is why display manufacturer's create gaming displays with resolutions of at least 1080P FHD which runs at least 1920 pixels by 1080 pixels. This resolution is a standard for gaming and most games are designed knowing most players will experience it in FHD.
- Performance - beyond the clarity of the image, a gaming monitor must be able to keep up with the fast-paced action that video games often result in. Due to this, a proper gaming monitor will have a low response time (in most cases below 5ms) and a high refresh rate to ensure that the images that you are seeing on the screen are being processed as quickly as they are happening in the game.
What To Consider Before Buying A Gaming Monitor
If you've done any research into the gaming monitor market so far, you probably have been overwhelmed with the number of models out there at all different price-points.
While it can be overburdening at first glance, it is essential to understand the differences between these models and why some are priced so dramatically different than others. We didn't include some confusing or misleading attributes like contrast ratios which often are misconstrued and misrepresented through marketing buzzwords.
In the rest of this section, we will dive deep into the most critical factors to consider when buying a gaming monitor under 150 dollars and let you know the standard for certain areas at this price-point.
Keep in mind, $150 gaming monitors will fall notably short in comparison to a higher-end gaming model. However, for most budget gamers, your gaming rigs likely won't need the high specs or advanced bells and whistles of a $500 gaming display.
Here are some important, key features to consider during your search:
Just like any consumer electronics product, the brand who makes it will often give you a decent indication of how it's built, how it performs or how long it should last. A lesser-known brand is likely of lower-quality while a notable brand is more likely to be built to last.
One of the main reasons why choosing a reputable brand is so important for a gaming monitor is for the manufacturer's warranty. No matter what brand, displays are subject to failure or malfunction especially concerning dead or stuck pixels, backlight issues or power failure.
Choosing a reputable brand to purchase from will ensure that your support experience is easy-going and you are given a replacement or repair on your gaming monitor promptly should problems arise.
As a general rule of thumb for gaming monitors, we usually look for at least a three-year warranty, but at this lower price-point that isn't as important.
Some manufacturers such as Dell may offer a premium support service like their 'Advance Exchange Service' which ensure that you'll get a replacement monitor shipped to you within one business day of a support claim.
One of the most obvious factors to consider the actual cost of the display, itself. Since this article focuses on gaming monitors that are priced under 150 dollars, you won't see a huge variance in price throughout our recommendations.
However, the models that are priced right under the $150 mark will hit nearly all the marks whereas those priced closer towards $100 may be missing out on some of the advanced features or bells and whistles.
Screen Size (Viewable)
This can be a confusing attribute as there are a few ways to categorize the size of a screen. The standard practice for screen size is to classify monitor's size rounded down to their closest whole inch.
However, the actual viewable measurements of the panel are often hidden in the description. This means in some cases, a model may only have a viewable portion of 23.6" although it still falls under the 24" category.
A half an inch shouldn't be a dealbreaker if the rest of the monitor's specifications and functionality check out, but it is important to realize how the marketing of screen size may not match the actual viewable size of the screen.
Depending on the size of the screen, you'll want to make sure it has a reasonable pixel density or resolution to achieve optimal image quality (see the next section for more on resolution).
For under $150, most gaming monitors will be in the 22" or 24" screen size (in some cases you may see a 27-inch monitor). Ideally, you want to buy a 24" as the standard for gaming displays in pro tournament and events is a 24-inch monitor running at 1080P FHD.
We touched on this a bit in the previous section, but resolution is common term in displays on any device including smartwatches, monitors, tablets, smartphones, laptops and televisions. Remember, that this attribute is completely independent of a monitor's size.
Resolution refers to the total number of pixels (aka pixel density) found on a screen's panel and these are into different common resolutions that often have a nickname. In this article's case, all of our recommendations offer a 1080P full high definition (FHD) resolution.
This means that there are 1920 pixels horizontally and 1080 pixels when measured vertically which equals a 16:9 aspect ratio. This pixel count is the industry standard for gaming and 1080p monitors are what most display manufacturers are focusing on.
By choosing from one of the recommended 1080 monitors, you can achieve the perfect combination of visual clarity and picture quality mixed with ample performance.
This attribute is a bit confusing to explain through text (we have embedded a helpful video below), but the refresh rate of a display refers to the number of times per second (measured in hertz) that your screen will update with new information.
Since video games often involve a high-pace, a proper gaming monitor should have a higher refresh rate than a standard monitor that you'd use for web browsing, office or school work.
At this price-point, you'll see refresh rates cap at either 60 or 75Hz which is decent. However, you'll see the refresh rate rise dramatically as you increase your budget all the way up to 144Hz (as a matter of fact, a 144hz monitor is quickly becoming the new standard for gaming) or even 240Hz of which more models are starting to pop up on the market.
Keep in mind, a refresh rate correlates with a game's frame rates which relies most on your gaming pc's capabilities. For example, if you are playing a game on a lower-end PC that can only achieve 50 frames per second on medium graphics settings, then a 75Hz refresh rate won't help much (this can lead to screen tearing).
However, if you were to drop the graphics down to low and have your machine run at 80 fps within the same game, then the 75Hz refresh rate will come into play and help be more visually smooth with what is occurring in the game.
If you can save up or jump up in price-points to a 144Hz monitor then you'll get a lot more bang for your buck in longevity and a better overall monitor for gaming however, these cost around $180 and up so budget accordingly.
A separate attribute from refresh rate though similar in the fact that it deals with panel performance and achieving the smoothest transitions in video or graphics.
Response rate refers to the specific speed in which the individual pixels can display a change in color (aka pixel response time), and this is measured in milliseconds or ms.
Too long of a response time results in a screen artifact called ghosting which is not ideal in an environment that relies on fast-paced gaming.
As a general rule of thumb, the response time should be 5ms or less for an optimal gaming experience although some hardcore gamers swear by ultra-fast response times like 1 or 2 ms.
Within this price-point, all of the monitors that we recommend have at least a 2ms response time. While there likely isn't a noticeable advantage from 1ms to 2ms for the human eye, a lower number is theoretically better.
The type of panel used within a gaming monitor is less important than other types of monitors, but there are pros and cons to the two primary forms: TN (twisted nematic) or IPS (in-plane switching).
There are other panel types such as VA panels too, but none of these are used in the budget gaming models we have listed in this price range so we didn't go into more detail on them.
A TN panel is more common in the gaming market as it is cheaper to produce but usually boasts a better response time.
An IPS panel has the advantage of better tone reproduction (such as SRGB color gamut), more vibrant colors and better viewing angles although you'll often have to sacrifice response time for these attributes.
It is not impossible to find IPS monitors that perform as well as a TN equivalent although this is not usually possible while remaining at the same price-point.
Only one model within this guide offers an IPS panel (LG's 24MP59G-P). However, a TN panel is usually not an issue at all for gaming as it is more important to have a fast display over a perfectly color accurate one.
If you are buying a monitor to both game and edit color-sensitive video or photography, then you'll likely want to pick up a gaming monitor that offers an IPS display to ensure accurate color reproduction during your media editing.
The backlight is what interacts with the panel to produce shades of color. The two main types of backlighting within a gaming monitor in this price-range are LCD (liquid crystal display) and LED (light-emitting diode). Technically speaking an LED display still utilizes LCD technology just with an LED backlight.
An LCD backlit is older technology and thus cheaper to produce, and that is the primary benefit. LED backlighting is newer technology which allows you to achieve better black levels and contrast ratios than LCD as well as slightly better color accuracy.
Some of the more expensive led backlit models will offer a low blue light filter that removes harmful blue rays, but it isn't as common to find in a budgeted monitor.
Energy efficiency is better on LED because it uses less power to operate the backlight. When you take into consideration the image quality and efficiency benefits, you'll want to try to choose an LED monitor for gaming if possible as it offers better value on the dollar.
Within the models listed in this guide at a sub-$150 price, all of the backlight types are an LED monitor besides the Acer KG241Q.
Some gaming monitors will come with speakers integrated into their design. However, these speakers are often poor quality and underpowered due to their small size, and frankly, you likely won't want to game using them, so we do not consider this attribute a dealbreaker.
There are advantages to using a gaming headset over speakers so chances are you'll want to invest in one anyways to get the best audio performance while gaming.
Some people buy a gaming monitor with speakers and expect a home theater experience and that just isn't rational especially for under $150.
Some monitors will offer a sound output which is ideal for console gamers as you can plug external speakers or headphones directly into your monitor to hear your audio without an adapter.
Depending on whether you are a PC or console gamer, you'll need a compatible port to connect the gaming monitor to your platform. A good gaming monitor will have a low input lag to not interfere with your game experience.
If you are playing on a gaming console like an Xbox or PlayStation, then you'll want to choose a display that offers an HDMI port. All of the gaming monitors mentioned in this guide offer HDMI.
For those gaming on a PC, most modern graphics cards will support HDMI as well although DisplayPort is quickly becoming the standard as it allows more data to be passed through for higher refresh rates (standard HDMI is capped at 60Hz).
This is a more advanced technology from AMD in which monitors with FreeSync can sync the refresh rate of the display to the fps of your computer to avoid screen tearing. If you plan on console gaming, you don't need to worry about FreeSync or G-Sync so you can skip these sections.
FreeSync will only work with compatible AMD graphics so those running NVIDIA graphics, you'll see no benefit from FreeSync support (see the next section).
At this price-point, four out of the seven gaming monitors listed within this guide offer FreeSync which makes sense as AMD graphics are notably cheaper than NVIDIA. I wouldn't consider this one of the key features to look for in a gaming monitor.
The same concept as FreeSync, G-Sync utilizes the same syncing of refresh rate to fps. However, this type of panel technology only works with NVIDIA graphics.
Generally, NVIDIA graphics cards are more popular on the higher-end and also more expensive. For under $150, none of the models listed within this product guide offer G-Sync, so NVIDIA users are out of luck.
Depending on your needs, you may want to have the option to mount your gaming monitor to the wall or a monitor arm for more comfortable positioning or viewing flexibility. This is usually an important factor when choosing models for multi-monitor setups which often utilize dedicated monitor arms.
Depending on the model, most gaming monitors will offer support for VESA mounts. While sold separately, a VESA mount is a universal standard compatible with most mounting accessories.
Keep in mind, that there are multiple sizes of VESA mounts so if you plan to go this route, be sure to get the supported VESA sizing before ordering the monitor and mount accessory.
Comparing Our Top Cheap Display Models
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Best Gaming Monitors Under $150 (2018)
The KG241Q is a great budget-friendly gaming monitor from Acer coming in with a 23.6" LCD display powered by a TN panel. With a resolution of 1080P (1920 by 1080), you'll be able to enjoy games at full HD resolution as long as your computer can handle it.
Beyond the resolution, the panel offers a fast 1ms response time as well as a 75Hz refresh rate which matches the highest performance that you'll see in this price range.
Another perk of this monitor is the inclusion of AMD's FreeSync technology to match the response rate of the monitor to a compatible AMD GPU (often found in a gaming laptop) to ensure the smoothest performance.
The included stand offers an adjustable viewing angle from -5 to 15 degrees (not to mention its sleek design) and can be removed for use with a VESA mount (100mm by 100mm). Choose between two HDMI and one VGA port in addition to two integrated 2W speakers.
AOC is a fairly well-known brand in the world of PC gaming and their G2460VQ6 monitor offers excellent performance for the price. This model offers full 1080P HD with AMD's FreeSync technology and anti-blue light technology to combat harmful rays of light.
The 24-inch panel itself offers similar performance to the Acer with a 75Hz maximum refresh rate and 1ms response time. While this monitor also utilizes a TN panel, the backlight is LED not LCD thus providing some added benefits.
You can adjust the stand's tilt angle, and the rear of the chassis supports VESA mounting for attaching directly to a wall or monitor arm.
Port selection on the G2460VQ6 is excellent with one VGA, one HDMI, and one DisplayPort. This allows you to attach it to virtually any computer or gaming console without any hoops to jump through with port compatibility.
While Dell makes plenty of monitors for both regular and gaming use, but their SE2417HG is their most common 24-inch gaming monitor that they offer within a $150 budget.
This monitor's panel offers a 1080P FHD resolution which matches the rest of the monitors in this guide, however, this TN panel is capped at 60Hz refresh rate and doubles the response time up to 2ms.
Beyond the slower refresh rate, this monitor offers no support for FreeSync which isn't ideal for gamers relying on AMD graphics. It does offer two HDMI 1.4 and a VGA port on the backside of the display.
One of the significant advantages to buying a Dell product over another brand is their stellar customer support. For example, if you run into trouble with this gaming monitor and qualify for Dell's Advanced Exchange Service, then you can have a replacement monitor shipped to you the next business day.
LG is one of the largest manufacturers of displays right now. Their expertise in the industry is noteworthy despite their primary focus being on TVs over computer monitors.
The 24MP59G-P is an entry-level 24" gaming monitor that hits a lot of marks without breaking the bank. The only monitor on this list to run an IPS panel and it is powered by an LED backlight.
There is FreeSync technology packed into this model to coincide with the high 75Hz refresh rate and 1ms response time for fast and smooth gaming performance.
Its design is sleek, and the stand is elegant although it lacks much adjustability. The inclusion of both HDMI and DisplayPort is a nice touch for maximum compatibility in today's gaming climate.
A familiar brand in the affordable display space, ViewSonic's VX2452MH is an excellent gaming monitor for the price and a suitable solution for budget-friendly gaming.
Offering a 24-inch TN panel with a full 1080P HD resolution, the image coming from this display looks great as it is coupled with an LED backlight.
With a 75Hz refresh rate and FreeSync technology, the performance is solid although it does have a 2ms response rate versus the 1ms of some of its top competitors.
The VX2452MH offers built-in speakers, an adjustable tilt angle with the included stand and the ability to mount the monitor to an arm or wall.
Our top pick for those on a tight budget is the ASUS VS247H-P, a monitor that we conducted a full review of back in 2012. While the monitor is a few years old now, the technology isn't too far behind.
Sporting a 24-inch TN panel with LED backlighting, this monitor performs well for its age with 2ms of response time and a 60Hz refresh rate.
FreeSync wasn't even invented yet when this model first debuted, so it doesn't support this technology. However, unless you have compatible AMD graphics, then this is an irrelevant factor.
It doesn't have any built-in speakers but does have an audio-out port for connecting to external speakers or headphones. Port selection includes VGA and HDMI.
Another huge name in gaming monitors right now is BenQ who has been producing some of the best displays on the market under both BenQ and their Zowie branding.
This is the largest display within this guide as it offers a 24.5" panel that runs the same 1080P FHD resolution as the rest. Concerning performance, the GL2580H runs at 60Hz (no FreeSync) and a 2ms response time with a TN panel powered by an LED backlight.
From a cosmetic standpoint, the GL2580H is one of the best looking monitors at this price-point with an edge to edge slim bezel design, built-in cable management, and an elegant matte finish.
There are no integrated speakers in this model, and its connections include an HDMI port and is the only one on this list to offer a DVI connection. VESA support is possible for attaching to monitor arms or a wall mount.
Those of you that have reached this point in this guide, then you have now received all of the information and insight that we have to share on the topic of affordable displays for budget gaming.
For most of you, we think the AOC G2460VQ6 is the best gaming monitor for $150 and the optimal choice out of this list. However, everyone's needs and desires are different, and any of these models may be suitable for your gaming needs.
If you are confused or stuck on which model to buy or have any concerns or questions still lingering despite reading the entirety of this article, then please utilize the comments section below. We will do our best to provide helpful guidance as soon as possible.