TV vs. Monitor for Gaming

Do you want to upgrade your screen? You love watching movies yet you can’t let go of the adrenaline rush of a newly released title.  

Well, your final decision entirely relies on two factors. The first is a question that you should ask yourself: “are you planning to be a professional gamer?” The second is understanding the pros and cons that come with both screens. 

In this article, we’ll walk you through all the specifications that you need to know to help you make the right decision. Let’s get started!

Short Answer

Serious console gamers need more than just a large TV screen. They need a lag-free gaming monitor with lower response time, a higher refresh rate, and a high-resolution screen.

TV vs. Monitor: Overall Comparison

Response TimeLowHigh
Screen SizeSmallLarge
HDR and ResolutionRelatively low Relatively high
Refresh RateHighLow
Input LagLowHigh
TV vs. Monitor

Everyday Use


Monitors shouldn’t be your top pick if you’re a fan of watching scheduled movies and TV shows; however, if you’re okay with downloading your shows and watching them later on your monitor screen, you can wholeheartedly go for a gaming monitor. 

People may tell you that a gaming monitor won’t offer you the same resolution as a TV, but they couldn’t be more wrong. Nowadays, monitors come with a 4k screen, which is good enough to have a well-displayed game.

Professional gamers play console games like their lives depended on it because, for them, gaming is their actual job. They can’t handle the consequences of a TV with high response time or input lag.


If you don’t care much about gaming, but appreciate the vividness offered by a wide 8k screen, then TV is the right pick.

Some people prefer having a TV because they like watching scheduled TV shows and movies. That way, they won’t have to pay extra subscriptions for applications like Netflix to watch their favorite shows.

Response Time

The response time of a device is the time taken by the screen to change colors and images when the player gives out a signal like pressing a button.

Response Time


Serious console gamers are always looking for low response times because a delay in the response may get a player to lose, which is not what a gamer wants. 

Having a low response time is the main reason why monitors have lower resolutions than TVs. The lowest response time ever made was 1 ms on a TN panel; however, an IPS panel can only go as slow as 4 ms, which is why professional gamers usually opt for TN panels.


On the other hand, the lowest response time witnessed for TVs is 4 ms, which isn’t good at all compared to gaming monitors. 

The reason why TV companies settle for high response time is that most users are looking for a bright, vivid display, giving up the low response time for high image quality.

Screen Size


Gaming monitors come in different sizes; however, console gamers are looking for a screen size ranging from 24 to 34 inches.

Gamers need a small screen to reduce their eye movement, as they’ve to be aware of the entire picture. Nevertheless, a large screen may distract their vision.


If you’re watching a movie, you don’t have to focus at all times, yet you’ll find yourself following up with the movie events. Cinemas are living proof of what I just mentioned. 

Nowadays, people are so lazy that they don’t go to the cinemas, so they build home theatres. Notable companies like Samsung made this dream come true. Not so long ago, Samsung introduced a 292-inch TV screen to the market, which cost about $70000.


HDR stands for high-dynamic-range imaging, an essential contributor to the screen’s resolution, as it controls the brightness and luminosity of the screen.


For gamers, a responsive screen matters more than having a high-resolution one. That’s why most pro gamers give up the HDR quality unless they’re willing to pay extra money to enjoy both features.


HDR is a primary quality to consider when shopping for a TV. You won’t need to splurge a lot of money to get that quality on a TV.

The TCL 55-inch 5 Series 4K Roku TV supports both HDR and 4k, and you can get that at only $350.

Refresh Rate

The refresh rate represents the number of times your screen will update the viewed image in a second.

Refresh Rate


Monitors are way ahead of TVs in this feature. Gaming monitors can come with refresh rates up to 240 Hz, which is a to-die-for quality for pro gamers.

Of course, nothing comes without a price, so you may need to spend a little more money to have a fast, smooth-paced game.

Check out out list of the best 240hz gaming monitors.


One drawback of TV screens is their relatively low refresh rates, as most TVs come with a 60-Hz refresh rate. Some companies claim that they produced 120-Hz displays, which turned out to be an interpolation of the refresh rates they expected the screen to present.

Input Lag

Input lag is the screen’s delayed time to display an action when pressing a controller’s button.


Another pro for the monitors is their low input lag. Some monitors only experience 5 ms latency, contributing to excellent responsiveness. 

All monitors support low input lag; however, TV screens must be adjusted to game mode to decrease their input lag. 


Another disadvantage of TV screens is that some of them experience high latency, so you think you‘re still playing, but you’re dead. People may overcome this by switching to game mode, but it won’t offer you the 5-ms input lag found in a monitor.

Manufacturers tried to decrease the flat LCD’s latency, and now they’re at 20 ms. One interesting fact to know about CRT screens is that they’d a better gaming display than flat LCDs, and some gamers are still using them to this day.

Final Thoughts

Most of the previously mentioned qualities root for monitors to be your next gaming display. As a pro gamer, you can give up the big screen, but you can’t settle for a response time higher than 4 ms.

Some might say why a gamer would put that much money into a screen.

Well, pro gamers play for a living. It’s their job to test and win games, and for that reason, they need to have a high-end gaming monitor.

Check out our list for best monitor for PS4.

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