What size monitor should I get?

This blog was updated in June 2022.

Computer monitors. You need them for your job and your household admin tasks. You definitely need them for your gaming sessions. And you most certainly need them to watch your favourite shows online!

Picking the best monitor size for your needs is crucial when it comes to optimising your desktop PC setup. It’s something you need to get just right – and a big part of what will determine which monitors will be suitable is the size.

Of course, these days, monitors are virtually flat screen – so much smaller and more compact than the boxy things we all used twenty years ago.

But even so, when you’re getting a new monitor, you don’t want to end up buying something too small, and you don’t want to invest in something which turns out to be too awkward or too big for the space in which it will sit.

Plus – of course – you want something with adequate specifications for the purpose you intend. It’s not going to benefit you if you buy a low spec monitor for some high-end gaming.

So, in this article, we’ll take a look at all of the things you need to consider When it comes to computer monitor sizes, including what size monitor you need for a home office, and the best-sized monitor for gaming monitors!

What are computer monitors used for?

Put simply, a computer monitor is the visual interface between you and your PC.

Obviously, it’s an integral part of a desktop PC system, and you really wouldn’t be able to function without one. If you didn’t have a monitor, how would you be able to see what your computer was doing? And more importantly, how would you be able to instruct your computer on what to do, or work on any of your documents and files?

It may sound kind of simplistic to explain all of that. But it’s always worth a brief moment to stop and smell the flowers, as it were, and grab a reminder that we’d be precisely nowhere if we didn’t have monitors.

What size monitor should I get?

When it comes to choosing between the various computer monitor sizes, the question of which is the best monitor size is rather subjective. The best monitor size will be the one that fits your needs.

Whether that’s gaming, editing, or just using Word, you want the monitor size that compliments these tasks.

Monitor sizes comparison

As a handy guide, the following monitor sizes and resolution combinations are what we consider appropriate for gaming and monitor use in general:

  • 23-inch to 25” – 1080p
  • 27” – 1440p or 4K
  • 28-inch to 32” and over – 4K
  • 25” to 29-inch ultrawide – 2560×1080
  • 34” ultrawide – 3440×1440
  • 38” ultrawide – 3840×1600
  • 43” super-ultrawide – 3840×1080, 3840×1200
  • 49” super-ultrawide – 5120×1440

Standard monitor sizes

When it comes to computers, big is generally seen as better, and the same is somewhat true for computer monitor sizes.

For most computer users, 24-inch monitors have long been the baseline in terms of thinking about the size of monitors. This is almost certainly because 24” was the most common size of monitor available for a long time, and it’s what you would see in homes and offices all over the world.

These days you’d probably find that most people consider a 24” monitor to be a touch on the small side. This is due to there being more and more different computer monitor sizes, with the introduction of ultrawide monitors and curved monitors.

Monitors with a screen size of 27 inches are popular, and there are actually plenty of options which stretch beyond 30” and upwards. If you want to be extreme, there are even monitors available in the 50”+ area!

Realistically, though, the ‘average’ home computer user will be satisfied with a monitor between 27 and 34 inches. Monitors of this size mean that, generally speaking, you can make the most of modern resolutions and colour capabilities.

From a practical and workflow point of view, these sizes of monitors also mean that you can probably have a couple of web pages or documents open at the same time without the need to have two monitors set up, which can be really handy for professionals.

Monitor technology has also developed immensely in the last couple of decades, and the switch from CRT (Cathode Ray Tube) to LCD (Liquid Crystal Display) has opened up many more possibilities – including creating much thinner units and much larger displays.

As this technology has advanced and been ‘fine-tuned’, so too has the capability to incorporate many impressive features in monitors.

Why would I need a smaller monitor?

Given how big monitors can get, opting for a smaller computer monitor size might seem to go against the grain somewhat, but there’s a method to this madness. Smaller monitors can sometimes be a much better choice for your computing needs, specifically if space is an issue.

Perhaps you have a smaller desk or a minimum of space on which to place all of your desktop PC bits and pieces, the tower itself plus keyboard, mouse, and monitor. In all of these scenarios, it would probably be best to go for something smaller.

You really don’t want to cram a giant monitor into a small area. A monitor with dimensions appropriate to your desk size, or the area in which you will be working, is always the most sensible choice.

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What features are available on monitors?

Not all people who shop for a new monitor will be looking for the same thing. Some will be more concerned with the quality of the display rather than anything else, while others will have the monitor’s features and connectivity at the forefront.

And, of course, some will put the size of the monitor higher on the list of priorities than any of those things. Before we delve into the size issue, let’s run through some of the most important features of computer monitors.

Screen resolution

First off, the resolution of your monitor is very important, just as important as taking the time for a monitor sizes comparison. Higher resolution, such as that provided by full HD monitors and 4K monitors, provides much great screen detail thanks to their pixel density. This is one of the key benefits of having a larger screen.

The more detail there is in the image, the better the viewing experience. It’s what makes high resolution monitors some of the best-sized monitors for gaming.

Screen quality

Most people find that 1920 × 1080 is appropriate for monitors up to 25-inch; 1440p is ideal for 27-inch, and 4K is great for 30-inch monitors and above, depending on preference.

You may consider a 27-inch 1080p monitor as the right choice because it feels considerably larger than a 24”, and is usually only a little bit more expensive, but beware!

Realistically, a 27-inch monitor is too big for 1920 × 1080 (at least to most users). You will get around 81 PPI (pixels per inch), which will mean that the picture can be somewhat pixelated.

Relatively speaking, text will be noticeably smudgy and details blurry. If you were to sit a bit further away from the monitor, any pixelation would be less noticeable, but that’s not ideal. And, of course, when you sit closer to type or work on things, then it’s going to be rather distracting.

What size monitor is best for a home office?

If all you need your monitor for is work tasks and general home admin, then opting for a 27” monitor or smaller will be your best option. Larger monitors will offer more screen space, but unless you need multiple windows open side by side, a smaller size is typically better.

The caveat to this, however, is if you work in video editing or other creative roles. Having a larger screen size will help you to edit with greater detail and have all the windows you need on-screen simultaneously.

What size monitor is best for gaming?

In terms of specific uses for the monitor, it’s definitely worth considering a larger monitor for gaming and content consumption. But not too large. Many gamers find that anything over 32” is a bit too big to be able to concentrate on all elements of the visuals.

There are some 32-inch 1440p monitors on the market, and on these, you can get the same picture clarity you would get with 24” 1080p monitors. But many gamers find 32-inch monitors too big for gaming as you have to move your head around to keep track of all of the action.

The best size monitor for gaming is also incredibly subjective. The WQHD (2560×1440) resolution is ideal for 27-inch monitors. At this resolution, you’ll be at around 108 PPI – a really good balance between picture clarity, detail, and screen size.

Additionally, 1440p allows for higher refresh rates than 4K — that is, if your PC system can handle it, giving you a much greater framerate overall. And speaking of nearing 4K Ultra HD in terms of gaming, opting for a 4K experience can have quite an effect as well.

Should your game not offer custom scaling, some UI elements will appear to be tiny on screen. So, if you’re specifically looking to buy a 4K monitor for gaming, you really have to make sure that all of your favourite games and applications handle scaling well.

When it comes to the best monitor size for gaming, it’s also worth considering an ultrawide monitor.

Most ultrawide monitors feature a 21:9 aspect ratio (as opposed to the standard 16:9). This extra horizontal space – plus what is usually the curve of a curved screen – can wrap your peripheral vision with the benefit of giving a wider field of view and a more immersive gaming experience.

The most common screen size for ultrawide and curved monitors is 30-inches, and these monitors can usually be found with either 3440×1440 or 2560×1080 resolution, which offers extra horizontal space in comparison to their respective 16:9 widescreen resolutions of 2560×1440 and 1920×1080.

The 2560×1080 resolution on a 34-inch monitor offers the same pixel density as 1080p on a 27-inch monitor – so this is really for those people who will be using the monitor just for gaming, and can sit further away from the screen.

But the 3440×1440 resolution on a 34-inch ultrawide monitor results in a similar pixel density to a 27” 1440p display. Translation: You’ll get plenty of screen space and the details of your picture will be sharp without having to resort to scaling.

Some bigger ultrawide monitors feature even higher resolutions – such as 3840×1600 and 5120×2160. The latter is often considered to be 5K ultrawide (and 5K, 2K, or 2160p ultrawide). This is a sort of a combination of 4K and ultrawide. There are also 32:9 ‘super’ ultra-wide displays with 3840×1080, 3840×1200 and 5120×1440 resolutions.

Monitors at Ebuyer

So, now that you have all of that information about the various screen sizes and resolutions of monitors – for home, office and gaming – all that’s left is to check out Ebuyer’s huge monitor range.

From the smallest 15” screens to the massive 34”+, we’ve got all your monitor needs covered here at Ebuyer. And if you’re interested in upgrading other areas of your computer, be sure to check out the Ebuyer blog for more articles like this one.

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