I recently built a new PC and decided to get a new monitor as well. My old monitor is actually fine, it’s a 24” Dell and I can’t recall exactly what model it is. It’s a 60hz monitor and I decided I wanted to try one with a higher refresh rate. More hertz means more FPS in a game. I got the impression that once you see over 60hz, you’ll never want to go back.

Recently, I bought a recertified Acer Predator XB241H. I have some problems with it, but I’ll not get into that here as it’s irrelevant to this discussion. One feature of this monitor is that it can be overclocked to 180hz. I had no idea you could OC a monitor! It’s a 24” 1080p monitor, just like the one I was using. I think I’ve decided that 1080p is a resolution I’m quite happy with and don’t really see a reason to change. Higher resolutions require more GPU power and higher resolutions decrease your FPS. I have a GTX 1660 Ti, which is plenty of GPU power, although I can’t recall whether or not it can do 4K (probably so). I also don’t think 2K or 4K would look good on the desktop, I imagine it would make icons much smaller than I want them to be. I remember progressing through resolutions as time progressed. Those older resolutions look horrible today (I think)!

Because I’m able to monitor my FPS via counters, I can see that I’m getting more than 60FPS without screen tearing. Before, with the old monitor, I turned on Vsync, because screen tearing was an issue and I hated it. Now I have a Gsync monitor and have it turned on. I am seeing about 10 more FPS in some graphically intense games like Atlas and Monster Hunter: World. My FPS in CivVI has more than doubled, in my testing I saw around 180. Surprisingly, when I tested Minecraft (without Optifine), I saw over 1,000FPS without any screen tearing! Whoa!

Other than having a counter, I don’t feel like I can personally notice or see the difference in FPS. All games I’ve played seem to look the same to me no matter what FPS I’m getting. Although, there is definitely a difference when I’m getting very low FPS. I don’t know at what point that becomes noticeable, but I kind of think less than 30 or even less than 10 is definitely noticeable.

What do you think? Is FPS something you can see and notice with your own eyes without a counter? Does FPS really matter to you? Are you unwilling to accept anything less than 60FPS or another number? Let me know in the comments, I’d like to discuss this.

Travis   Admin wrote on 09/11/2019 at 07:42pm

A few things. Yeah, the frames per second matter. On some games it feels like it matters more. Maybe it’s the engine? I feel like I enjoy the id engine games like Doom and Wolfenstein more with a frame rate as close to 60 (or above) as I can get. But some, 30 is fine. Below 30 and you really start noticing problems.

That said. Some games (and I can never predict which ones) will give me motion sickness, and one thing I can do to limit that is reduce the fps to 30. Paradoxically, if the frame rate gets too low I will start feeling motion sickness too.

But yeah I can definitely tell a huge difference between 30 and 60, but over that I can’t.

As for 4K and screen tearing, I just recently upgraded my monitors and I have some thoughts there.

I have a 1060 and it can run 4K so yours surely can. The desktop resolution running at 4K CAN make everything way too small to use, but in modern operating systems you have to go out of your way NOT to use display scaling. You’ll be running in 4K but the interface elements will stretch to appear as though you were in 1080p or 1440p. Everything just looks more crisp. It’s kinda magical to use a desktop in 4K because you’ve never imagined how great a simple web page can look. Google search results will blow your mind 😂

My monitor isn’t Gsync certified but it IS freesync, and you can make your nvidia drivers treat them the same, and yes, it is incredible how that limits screen tearing.

But yeah, there are plenty of games I can’t play at 4K. But I can get 1440p in almost all the games I want to play, and a few games will give me some gorgeous 4K. Honestly, one of the best things I’ve played with was Quake 3 Arena. In 4K. Yep, kinda odd. Old meets new. But it is GORGEOUS in 4K and more frames than my eyes can even see.

Travis   Admin wrote on 09/11/2019 at 07:52pm

Oh also— you mention your FPS more than doubling.

If you set v-sync it will limit it to something your monitor can display. On a 60hz monitor, that’s what you’ll max out at with v-sync on.

GregoPeck   Super Member   Post Author wrote on 09/11/2019 at 07:59pm

That sucks that you get motion sickness. I don't have that happening to me. I don't don't feel like I can notice the difference between 30 and 60 or more. Like I said, though, below 30 or around 10 is where it's definitely noticeable (the game barely runs).

You just changed how I feel about 4K. I thought there was probably something you could do, I didn't quite think about resolution scaling, but that makes sense. Higher resolutions do drop your FPS, though. For some games getting 60 at 1080p is easy, but getting 60 at 4K is very tough, from what I've seen. You made me interested in 4K, I'd like to see how that looks. I actually thought about Googling some pictures of 4K to see what the desktop would look like. Maybe I'll have to look into it.

Since I'm having problems with this monitor, I may actually return it. There is an Alienware 1080p monitor I really want it. It's 240hz. I may end up getting it, even though it looks like it'll be overkill. Although, now thanks to your comment, I'm starting to think whether or not I want to upgrade to a higher resolution. LOL

The Alienware: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0733VW5QB/?coliid=IAQI9SF41YF4O&colid=3RTYMSB6B7JIF&psc=1&ref_=lv_ov_lig_dp_it

Also, I'm aiming for a 1ms response time. That apparently makes a difference in gaming, especially shooters, although I don't usually play them. I'm not sure I'm noticing this change either.

The Acer Predator: https://www.amazon.com/Acer-Predator-XB241H-bmipr-1920x1080/dp/B01C05C1OK/ref=cm_cr_arp_d_product_top?ie=UTF8

In the end, I'm thinking maybe it all has to do with our own individual eyesight. My eyes are imperfect, so perhaps I can't see what others can (like the difference in higher than 30FPS).

Thanks for joining the discussion! This is something I've been thinking about lately and I wanted to share it here.

Travis   Admin wrote on 09/11/2019 at 08:18pm

Honestly that 1ms response time is something I don’t think I’ve ever noticed. That said, every flatscreen I’ve ever had has been 5ms so I’m not sure what it feels like but I’ve never felt like there was a delay. Maybe if I played with 1ms I would change my mind.

GregoPeck   Super Member   Post Author wrote on 09/11/2019 at 08:26pm

Yeah, I understand the correlation between VSync and FPS. With the Dell that came w/ my Alienware PC, I play with VSync on. With this Acer, I turn off VSync, but turn on GSync. CivVI has in-game VSync and frame limiter, which I enabled for the Dell, but disabled for the Acer. Without those enabled, the Dell had screen tearing, where as the Acer does not.

So, I looked at pcpartpicker.com and it looks like 4K monitors are very expensive. 4K means that the second dimension is 4,000+ (like for example 1000x4000), right? The 2K monitors also look expensive, but I found a 1440 that looks reasonable. So now I'm wondering, should I get one with the highest refresh rate (the Alienware) or one with a higher resolution. I found a Dell 1440p that is 144hz or 165hz (depending on the model). I won't buy another Acer monitor due to the issues I'm having with the one I have and their technicians. Unfortunately, it's difficult to find a good monitor on Amazon, because there are positive reviews, but also negative ones, so I'm kind of trying to find one that has a lot less negative ones. The Alienware seems good, it seems like many people got a good unit, while only a few received a defective one. The one I bought (Acer) seems to have more people reporting defective units.

Travis   Admin wrote on 09/11/2019 at 08:46pm

4K resolution is 3840x2160. I guess they just decided 2160p was a mouthful and approximated the width. It’s double the width and height of a 1080p.

Travis   Admin wrote on 09/11/2019 at 08:51pm

If you’re just worried about gaming the 1440p would be fab I bet. I went 4K for the extra pixels I could put stuff in for development. Being able to spread even more windows across two monitors, and seeing more stuff within those windows, is pretty great.

GregoPeck   Super Member   Post Author wrote on 09/11/2019 at 08:55pm

Thanks for the clarification, I should have just Googled. That certainly changed things on my pcpartpicker.com search, but they're still a bit expensive. Now I'm thinking about high refresh rate vs. resolution. I'm thinking I might look around at recommendations for a monitor that best fits my GPU.

Feel free to comment with your thoughts on my new-to-me debate (high refresh rate vs. resolution).

GregoPeck   Super Member   Post Author wrote on 09/11/2019 at 09:12pm

Ok, now I'm leaning towards a Dell with a higher resolution. I haven't tried a high resolution out yet. I've experienced higher refresh rate and don't really feel the difference. This one seems good, be cause it's a like a middle ground for high refresh rate and resoltion. I still have to look at reviews. So here's what I'm thinking of getting now: https://www.amazon.com/Dell-Gaming-S2716DGR-LED-Lit-Monitor/dp/B0149QBOF0/ref=cm_wl_huc_item

I'm still not sure when I'll get a new monitor. Luckily, I don't *have* to get one as my old Dell that came w/ my Alienware PC is still really good. But, I want to experience newer tech. I am working on a refund for the Acer. That won't give me enough for the Dell or Alienware monitor, so I may have to wait a little bit to save.

I'm still interested in opinions on this.

Travis   Admin wrote on 09/12/2019 at 03:51am

That one looks pretty nice, and seems very well optimized for gaming.

jdodson   Admin wrote on 09/12/2019 at 04:26am

> Is FPS something you can see and notice with your own eyes without a counter? Does FPS really matter to you?

Depends on the game. I think a solid 30 fps is the baseline and anything lower than that is painful. That said the more frames you have the easier time I have with a shooter.

That said, some fps lag on a turn based game like Civilization is less important because it's not a twitchy game.

> Are you unwilling to accept anything less than 60FPS or another number? Let me know in the comments, I’d like to discuss this.

Historically yes because I haven't had the greatest PC hardware but this is changing. Next year I plan on buying a monitor that will be between 100 - 120 hz / fps and plan on upgrading my PC video card to see about getting games over 60 hz / fps and into the 100 territory.

GregoPeck   Super Member   Post Author wrote on 09/12/2019 at 04:40am

Now I'm thinking about getting an IPS panel, pretty much for better color. LOL I've been looking at Amazon and there are quite a few different monitors to choose from. The Dell seems to be the highest rated, so I might go with that. I may get it sooner than the Switch and make the Switch wait.

Thanks for the input Jon! I'm definitely interested in seeing what hardware you get and what you think of that higher refresh rate and more FPS. What are your thoughts when it comes to resolution?

jdodson   Admin wrote on 09/12/2019 at 03:37pm

> What are your thoughts when it comes to resolution?

The more the better but when it comes to playing a game i'd sacrifice more resolution for a higher frame rate.

GregoPeck   Super Member   Post Author wrote on 09/13/2019 at 01:07am

I think I've finally decided what I'm going to get soon. It's pretty much the Dell I shared earlier, but 24" instead of 27". I think both my other Dell monitor and this Acer that I'm returning are 24" and I think I'm fine with that. I think a bigger monitor would just take up too much space. Already one of my speakers kind of hides behind the monitor. This seems to have mostly good ratings on Amazon. It's also cheaper and thus more affordable. Here's the link: https://www.amazon.com/Dell-Gaming-S2716DGR-LED-Lit-Monitor/dp/B01IOO4SGK/ref=sr_1_14?fst=as%3Aoff&qid=1568248913&refinements=p_n_feature_fifteen_browse-bin%3A17751808011%2Cp_n_feature_eleven_browse-bin%3A17726573011%7C17726574011%7C17726576011%2Cp_n_feature_twelve_browse-bin%3A17726584011&rnid=17726583011&s=pc&sr=1-14&th=1

If you want, feel free to share with me what monitor(s) you are using, along with specs. and what you think about it/them.

GregoPeck   Super Member   Post Author wrote on 09/13/2019 at 01:27am

Oh yeah, I forgot to ask. Travis, you said you're using 4K, right (or at least higher than 1080p)? It seems like you don't use resolution scaling for your desktop. My question is, how does YouTube look? Most videos I've seen only seem to have 1080p as their highest quality level, although there are videos that are created in higher resolutions. I thinking, maybe that if you full screen a video, it can be stretched to fit your desktop resolution. I'm wondering if that has a noticeable impact on the video, or if the video just displays at 1080p with a black box around it covering the remaining of the resolution.

Travis   Admin wrote on 09/13/2019 at 01:57am

> It seems like you don't use resolution scaling for your desktop

Not sure where you got that. I definitely do, it would be insanely hard to read otherwise.

1080p video will fullscreen, the same way 240p video full screened back in the day. It won't look 4k but it'll still look 1080p, it's not like the extra pixels degrade the video quality. You can find some 4k youtube videos, but there aren't a ton.

jdodson   Admin wrote on 09/13/2019 at 03:03am

> I'm wondering if that has a noticeable impact on the video, or if the video just displays at 1080p with a black box around it covering the remaining of the resolution.

Like Travis said, the video will stretch and it will be a 4K sized video without the pixel density to back it up and depending on if you have an upscaling video player could look better? Like VLC might do that? The PS3 did that very well for DVD's, I remember watching Star Wars on DVD and the upscaler made it look incredible. Then I got it on Blu-Ray and found true religion. 4K DISNEY PLZ!

GregoPeck   Super Member   Post Author wrote on 09/13/2019 at 05:58am

>Not sure where you got that. I definitely do, it would be insanely hard to read otherwise.

Well I kind of assumed. You mentioned how a 4K desktop looks and that Google search results will "blow your mind." You mentioned desktop rescaling, but you didn't exactly say whether or not you were using it, so it was a bit of an assumption on my part. So, what resolution have you scaled your desktop to? I imagine you've set it for something that looks good and is comfortable.

>Like Travis said, the video will stretch and it will be a 4K sized video without the pixel density to back it up and depending on if you have an upscaling video player could look better? Like VLC might do that? The PS3 did that very well for DVD's, I remember watching Star Wars on DVD and the upscaler made it look incredible. Then I got it on Blu-Ray and found true religion. 4K DISNEY PLZ!

Thank you both for explaining. It makes sense, really, because I can watch videos that are <1080p and still fill the screen without a black border. Not sure what I was thinking there, I guess, because I haven't experienced greater than that then I didn't really know. I barely remember the upscaling on the PS3. I haven't used my PS3 in a long time.

So, Jon, you're running at 4K, too (like Travis)? Do you both use that resolution for gaming? If not, what do you use? Being that you're both devs., 4K's extra desktop space makes sense. Do you both also have IPS panels? Those are usually recommended for people like content editors for their better color. Travis mentioned 5ms response time and I have recently seen something that pretty much less than 10ms is good. I have no idea what this old Dell of mine has for that spec.

I've gone back and forth between this old Dell and the Acer and I really feel like I can't tell the difference. It seems like the Dell has better color, or maybe it's because that's what I got used to. I've also seen that OCing a monitor for a higher resolution will or can in some cases make the colors worse. I've read where people have said colors looked "washed out" on things. I've never really color calibrated this Dell, but I did tinker with the Acer, although I never got it set good enough. I'm still not sure this Dell's color is completely good enough, but generally, I think it is.

Travis   Admin wrote on 09/13/2019 at 05:04pm

Yeah so— the text blowing your mind that I mentioned is a function of the desktop scaling. You can have something that looks 1440p or 1080p, but the text has so much pixel density that it’s unlike anything you’ve ever seen. It’s surreal really. Mine is set at 1440-alike, which I found comfortable. My old monitors were 21 inch 1080p, and upgrading to 27inchers gave me more room to play with. The text looks about the same size as it did on my old setup, but I can fit more stuff on them because of the extra virtual resolution.

TBH, I have no idea what exactly IPS does, I haven’t looked into it much, but yeah these are IPS.

GregoPeck   Super Member   Post Author wrote on 09/13/2019 at 05:29pm

Cool, thanks for the info! I'm more excited now to get a new monitor. :)

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