Best Computer Monitor Under 100, 200, 300 2017
A Review and Guide for Computer Monitors
Staring at a computer monitor all day can sometimes be stressful, especially if you tend to get eye strain or headaches. Even though today's top computer monitor technology is designed for heavy use it's important to know what you're getting into before you purchase a monitor for your PC or Mac that you'll be spending long hours on.
In this post we'll review the best rated computer monitors under 100, 200, and 300 dollars and give you a guide to help you learn more about monitor specifications so you can make the right choice for your specific circumstances. You'll also be able to see the opinion of other readers just like you with our interactive polls. Use the contents at a glance section below to get started.
A Monitor Buying Guide for 2017
What to Look for Before You Buy Online
A few years ago if you needed more work space for all of your files and paperwork you added a bigger desk or got a bigger office. Today's jobs require increasingly large monitors which allow today's workforce to increase their productivity by having more viewing area for spreadsheets, webpages, and documents. Here's a few monitors terms that you should know before increasing your overall workspace.
LED vs LCD
LCD or "liquid crystal displays" are the latest in monitor technology. The display is relatively thin and is not lit up by itself. In order to light up a modern LCD monitor or television internal backlighting is used. At first CCFL or cold-cathode fluorescent lamps were used to produce the light. You should assume that any monitor that is simply listed as LCD and not LED is a CCFL LCD. These monitors are efficient and do a good job but are bulkier, require more energy, and emit mercury vapor to develop ultraviolet light. Conversely the newer LED LCD technology is thinner, more energy efficient, and in general lighter on your eyes than LCD monitors. The cost difference between the two as of today is minimal. LED lights can also be dimmed or turned off in order to produce a better contrast ratio by getting a more realistic black.
If you've been in an electronics store and have looked at any type of display you've probably seen its contrast ratio advertised. Contrast ratio is a measurement of the whitest white and the blackest black. A higher contrast ratio is ideal for more detailed/accurate imaging but may not be necessary for most office computers.
Response time measures the amount of time it takes a pixel to go from one color to another and then back again. Lower response times are more desirable and help to eliminate the blurring that can sometimes happen during action sequences of games or movies. If you don't plan on using your computer for gaming or movies, then it's likely you wouldn't notice the difference between two monitors with different response times.
Today's latest monitors generally come with all the resolution that is appropriate for their size. Although monitors can go significantly higher "full HD" resolution is usually considered 1920x1080(p). The first number is considered the amount of horizontal pixels and the second is the amount of vertical pixels. Graphic designers and photographers may desire a monitor with a high number of pixels per square inch simply because it gives them a sharper image and more pixels to work with.
There are 4 main types of connectors that are found on the back of your computer. Analog RGB which is typically blue, DVI which is typically white, HDMI, and mini-HDMI. Before purchasing a monitor it's a good idea to look at the type of connectors that your monitor comes with and that they match what you're given on the back of your computer. Adapters as well as DVI to HDMI and mini-HDMI cables are also available; however, it's more convenient to think of the type of connection you need ahead of time.
Unless listed otherwise you can assume that your monitor has a TN or "twisted nematic panel". Twisted nematic panels are generally used with consumers because they are less expensive and have better response times. Those needing accurate color reproduction, photographers, graphic designers, and others, may want to look for an IPS panel monitor because it can produce the 16.7 million colors, without dithering, available in 24-bit truecolor. Modern S-IPS panel monitors can produce up to 1.07 billion colors. For more information on IPS panel monitors I recommend this article on IPS Photo Editing Monitors.
Best Computer Monitor Under $100
ASUS VS228H-P 22-Inch Full-HD Monitor
There are few quality LED monitors in the under $100 category. One of the best is the Asus VS228H-P which is readily available in this price range with a rebate.
Picture and Slim Design
You might think that the design and picture of a $100 monitor might be overwhelming, but Asus gives you the value you want with the price you want to pay. This monitor has a slim and elegant design, is mountable on your wall, and has an amazing picture that features a 50,000,000:1 Asus smart contrast ratio that features full HD 1080p picture in 16.7 million colors.
The picture itself is very warm and easy to work with and the screen is matte so you don't have to worry about the glare that plagues so many other monitors. It's also big, but not too big. At 22" it's just about the perfect size for your desk and workspace.
It's hard to beat the Asus VS228H-P when it comes to overall value and what you get for your money. Also, if you prefer a larger version, there's also a 24" version of this monitor that costs around $20 more.
Other Good PC Monitor Options Under $100 2015
Viewsonic is well-known for their quality affordable products. The VA2033-LED uses the highest grade panel in the industry and is backed by Viewsonic's industry-leading Pixel performance guarantee.
Technical details include 10,000,000:1 Mega Dynamic Contrast Ratio, 1600x900 resolution, slim design, and DVI and VGA inputs.
Best Monitor Under $200
In the under $200 category I've chosen one of the best selling monitors of 2015, the ViewSonic VA2446M-LED 24" monitor.
For the money (around $150) you get a really great picture with the VA2446M-LED. It's a full high definition 1920 x 1080p resolution monitor with a mega contrast ratio of 10,000,000:1. Used with Viewsonic's LED backlighting technology this monitor is able to produce more accurate grays and blacks. It also has a quick 5ms response time which is good enough to play games and watch movies without much blurring. That being said this isn't a performance monitor for gaming. If you are a performance enthusiast, then you may want to consider the Viewsonic VA2446M-LED which has an ultra-fast 2ms response time.
Energy Savings and LED Green:
The ViewSonic VA2446M-LED is energy star compliant and uses up to 50% less energy when compared to other LCD screens of its size. It's also environmentally friendly because it doesn't emit mercury.
The ViewSonic VA2446M-LED is tilt adjustable, comes with built-in speakers, and is VESA compliant for mounting. It also has diverse connectivity options with a DVI and Analog RGB connectors.
Overall it's a good value for around $150 and worth pairing in a dual setup if you use a lot of spreadsheets or need multiple windows.
Top Rated Monitors Under $200 2017
Asus' model VS248H-P is currently on rebate for around $150 making it a good value purchase in this price range.
If you're a gamer concerned about responsiveness and input lag, then I highly recommend BenQ's RL2455HM. BenQ's models are built by gamers for gamers and allow you to get a bit of an edge up on the competition. This particular model is readily used in Starcraft and other gaming tournaments held by the MLG.
Best Monitor Under $300
Viewsonic VX2753MH-LED Review
In the under $300 you really get quite a few high-performance monitor options. While you certainly can't get a high-end IPS panel monitor in this price range, there are many budget IPS panel monitors in the $250-400 that still do a superb job of giving you accurate colors. As far as response time for the TN panel monitors, at this size 25-27 inches, most monitors have a response time of 3ms or faster.
My favorite monitor of 2013 in the under or "around" $300 category is the Viewsonic VX2753MH-LED which I recently picked up from Amazon. It's by no means perfect, but it certainly does have a lot of attractive features for the money you pay.
The picture on this monitor is in crystal clear full 1080p high definition. The 30M:1 dynamic contrast ratio as well as Viewsonic's new LED backlighting also produces deeper blacks by completely turning off individual LED lights. The result is an increase in image accuracy and detail. With a 1ms response time and no noticeable input lag I have been unable to see any ghosting or blurring in the picture during gaming or action sequences.
When you pick this monitor up you'll notice that it's significantly lighter than previous LCD models. Viewsonic has also built-in a bookstand design which allows you to remove the stand altogether and lean the monitor back. This makes for a great eye level point-of-view. It weighs less than 10 pounds and I've even been able to take it into work a time or two when I needed a multi-screen setup. Despite being light the stand is solid enough that it doesn't wobble at all even when I type or accidentally bump by desk.
Overall this is a fantastic monitor. If there's one design flaw it's that it isn't VESA compliant for wall mounts. It comes with 2 HDMI and a VGA connector so you may need to purchase a HDMI to DVI cable or an adapter depending on your PC's motherboard or video card's outputs. The built-in speakers won't blow your socks off but they certainly are convenient for things like simple web browsing and the occasional YouTube video. Comes with a 3 year parts and labor warranty with Viewsonic's Pixel Performance Guarantee. If your on the fence about the price, then I highly recommend the VX2453MH-LED, the 24 inch version of this monitor, which you can buy online for more than $100 less.
What's Your Favorite Monitor Under $100?
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Monitor Post, Page, and Site Recommendations
If you're still looking for a monitor, then here are a few other sites and pages which I recommend.