If you are shopping for a new display, you may be comparing a TV vs a computer monitor. The best computer monitors, after all, may include features that the best television cannot offer, and vice versa. Keep reading to learn the differences between TVs and computer monitors.


  • Televisions are great display types for easily streaming video content, especially smart televisions.
  • TVs are generally much larger than computer monitors, with screens that go up to 70-inches and above, offering comparable pixel density and pixels per inch metrics.
  • Computer monitors tend to offer much faster response times, lower input lag, and faster refresh rates, which comes in handy while gaming.

Differences Between TVs and Computer Monitors

There are many differences when it comes time to compare standard televisions and dedicated computer monitors. Televisions are designed for bright and bold colors, which can come in handy in some instances, but they aren’t known for offering the kind of response times competitive gamers are looking for.

Screen Size

When shopping for a computer monitor, you may be stuck comparing 24 vs 27-inch monitor sizes. In other words, computer monitors are not that big. Televisions, on the other hand, are absolutely gigantic. Modern HDTVs can go up to 70-inches or larger in some cases. To get that kind of immersion with a computer monitor, you will have to start comparing two monitors vs ultrawide monitors. The increased screen real estate makes TVs the absolute champ when it comes to watching streaming content, such as your favorite movies.

Insider Tip

Many modern TVs can actually act as computer monitors, so long as you have the correct connection cables.


Computer monitors, particularly gaming monitors, are designed from the ground up to offer blazing-fast response times. The same cannot be said for televisions. Your average computer monitor can offer response times in the 0.5ms to 1ms area, whereas average TVs offer response times in the area of 5ms to 8ms. That is a fairly stark difference that will certainly come into play with computer games and other computing tasks in which responsiveness is key.


Both modern computer monitors and newly released smart TVs offer high resolutions, with neither option boasting a significant advantage over the other. However, a computer’s GPU and related processors will have to handle all of those pixels, so 4K monitors could offer slower response times and refresh rates while gaming and performing other graphics-intensive tasks. Televisions are typically not hampered too much by these metrics.


You can find budget-friendly models in both categories, though you can buy larger TVs for much cheaper than you can buy larger-than-average computer monitors. Of course, when it comes to computer monitors, you may not even need a large display, as you will likely be sitting directly in front of it.


Do gaming monitors deliver good sound or do I need external speakers?

Not necessarily. Gaming monitors are not known for having the most powerful speakers, so you should look into external speakers.

Why monitors are better than TVs for gaming?

It all boils down to lower input lag, higher response time, and the inclusion of variable refresh rate. Though TVs tend to integrate better with gaming consoles and their console games, with wider viewing angles.

Do gaming monitors need USB-C?

Not always. Modern gaming monitors offer plenty of connectivity options, including HDMI cable ports, USB-C ports, DisplayPort, and more.

STAT: In the second quarter of 2021, Dell’s shipments of PC monitors amounted to about 7.55 million units, whilst those of Lenovo reached 4.16 million shipments. TVP ranked third among vendors with 3.71 million PC monitor shipments. (source)

Lawrence Bonk

Lawrence Bonk is a copywriter with a decade of experience in the tech space, with columns appearing in Engadget, Huffington Post and CBS, among others. He has a cat named Cinnamon.

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