TV vs Monitor Refresh Rate

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Updated February 20, 2023

The best TVs and monitors are out there, but you need to do a little research to find them. Stalking the shelves is great, but doing the bookwork on different functions is better. When you compare TV vs monitor refresh rate, you find a few things. The first is monitors almost always have a better refresh rate, which refers to how many times your display can draw a new image within a second. TVs always lag behind in this arena. As for the rest of what you should know, keep reading to find out more.


  • Generally, a higher refresh rate will result in a heftier price tag. This is true for monitor screens and TVs alike. However, monitors tend to be the cheaper option overall.
  • A few standard refresh rates are available: 60, 75, 144, and 240Hz. TVs aren’t generally found at the higher levels, so monitors win this round.
  • If you’re an avid gamer, there is also a clear choice when playing your favorite video game. A monitor will be cheaper at a better rate.

Comparing TV and Monitor Refresh Rates

Before you dive into the deep end of dishing out dough, you should ensure you understand refresh rates. This number decides how often your display can draw a new image within a second. You’ll find that a monitor screen is the better choice between the two. This is due to a few factors, which you can see in the sections below. You may also want to look into some other things, like the comparison between input lag in a TV vs. a monitor.

Insider Tip

Competitive gamers generally use a refresh rate of 240Hz.

Overall Cost for High Refresh Rates

There is a significant cost difference between a faster or slower response time for frame rate. This is true whether looking at an OLED TV or monitor screen. However, this changes if you pit them against each other. TVs with high refresh rates are pretty pricey, so a monitor will always be the cheapest choice if a high native refresh rate is all you’re after. If you’re looking for something new, make a Samsung 6 vs. 7 Series comparison.

Most Common Refresh Rates Available

Once you know what a refresh rate is, you can better understand what an effective refresh rate means to you. As for the native refresh rate, we’ll list the most common ones below from slowest response time to fastest:

  • 60Hz
  • 75Hz
  • 144Hz
  • 240Hz

The standard refresh rate on a TV is 60Hz, though you can find some that are higher. Monitors usually do better than TVs for gaming, among other uses, because they generally come with a higher refresh rate and a lower price. For more information, compare the 120hz vs. 240hz vs. 60hz refresh rates.


A low refresh rate will cause on-screen motion to show up as a blur, so make sure you choose a display with a decent rate.

Usage with Gaming in Mind

If you’re looking for a gaming monitor, you’ll want great image quality. Faster response times mean you get less motion blur, so looking for an effective refresh rate is tantamount. In this arena, you’ll want to choose a monitor for gaming with a 120hz refresh rate or better. If you’re not convinced, you could look into the top-rated gaming TV or even the leading TV monitor instead.

STAT: In 2020, gaming monitor shipments worldwide reached 18.4 million units, with forecasts for 2021 suggesting that this is likely to rise to 25.9 million units. (source)

TV Refresh Rate vs. Monitor FAQs

What is the most effective rate for competitive gaming?

If you’re into competitive multiplayer gaming, you’ll need to look into high-end gaming monitors that can be put to the task. Most competitive gamers need at least 240Hz to game effectively.

Are there benefits to expensive display technology?

There is a wide range of benefits to having better technology for your display:
  • Faster refresh rate
  • Smoother motion
  • Better gaming setup

What’s the best display for gaming?

The type of content you view changes your needs regarding displays. If you’re just watching a soap opera, you don’t need anything fancy. But for computer or console games? Go with a great monitor.

Are gaming TVs a good investment?

If you love console games, then absolutely. You might even find that these are preferable to monitors for gaming since their larger screen size can be enticing.
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