144hz vs 165hz Monitors: What’s The Difference?

Cosmic Coop

The main difference between 144hz vs 165hz is the 14.5% increase in the potential to display images, specifically as shown by the numbers, the 21 images per second difference of 165hz from 144hz.

For some, the difference won’t be that apparent and both monitors might look the same but if you’re someone who frequently plays at higher frame rates, you might be more perceptive of the difference between these two gaming monitors.

Key Takeaways:

There’s no big difference between a 144hz monitor and a 165hz monitor. If you are planning to go from a 60hz monitor to either a 144hz or 165hz monitor, then you will notice a significant difference when gaming but otherwise both are nearly the same with 165hz being slightly better. If you upgrade your monitor, don’t forget to change the settings to 144/165hz.

Hertz (Hz) Meaning

What Does Hz Mean?

Hertz or HZ for short is the number of times per second that a monitor refreshes its image.

A 144hz monitor refreshes the image 144 times in a second, and 165hz refreshes 165 times per second.

Regular monitors refresh at 60hz so there is a significant difference between 60hz and 144hz or 165hz.


How To Test Your Monitor HZ

TestUFO Refresh Rate Tester

Many people who upgrade from a 60hz monitor forget to change their display settings. Use TestUFO to check your refresh rate.

Not showing the correct refresh rate? Go to your Display Settings and adjust the refresh rate manually.


Refresh Rates Differences When Gaming

Differences in Refresh Rates When Gaming with 144hz and 165hz

Theoretically, the higher the refresh rate, the better the gaming experience you get because more images are being displayed in a second.

See below to see the difference between these two gaming monitors when it comes to how fast a frame is rendered:

  • 144Hz = 6.94ms/frame
  • 165Hz = 6.06ms/frame

The human eye can process around 30-60 frames per second (according to HealthLine) and that’s the reason why most movies are only 24fps because it is the minimum needed to give an illusion of motion or what we call the “movie effect”.

However, in gaming, especially first-person shooter games, smoothness is more important than the movie effect.

That’s where higher refresh rates come into play.

A 144hz monitor will provide you with a much smoother experience than a 60hz monitor, and a 165hz monitor will provide an even better smoothness at max framerate.

If you’re looking to get the best smoothness possible for a competitive game or other dynamic games, a 165hz monitor is the way to go.


Differences in Input Lag with 144hz and 165hz Gaming Monitors

Differences in Input Lag with 144hz and 165hz Gaming Monitors

Another important factor to consider when choosing between 144hz and 165hz monitors is input lag.

Input lag is the delay between the time you input a command and the time it appears on the screen.

A lower input lag means a more responsive gaming experience.

When buying a new monitor, just be sure to get one with low input (1ms or 2ms is fine).


Advantages and Disadvantages of 144hz and 165hz Gaming Monitors

Advantages and Disadvantages of 144hz and 165hz Gaming Monitors

144hz Gaming Monitor

Advantages

  • Prevents motion blur and any blurry effects.
  • Can play popular games for a competitive gamer.
  • No ghosting for a game running in 144hz
  • Smooth and fast visuals.

Disadvantages

  • Needs high powered GPU to function.
  • Needs high-end quality monitors to render topnotch graphics.
  • Can be expensive.

165hz Gaming Monitor

Advantages

  • Reduced input lag with its higher refresh rate.
  • Even smoother and faster visuals.
  • Faster response.

Disadvantages

  • More expensive than 144hz monitors.
  • Needs an even more powerful GPU to function properly.

Hardware To Achieve Max Frame Rate Per Second for 144hz and 165hz Monitors

Hardware To Achieve Max Frame Rate Per Second for 144hz and 165hz Monitors

The next thing that you would want to know would be the hardware required to get the maximum frame rate on monitors with 144hz vs 165hz.

If you’re building your gaming setup from scratch and would want to have one of the high refresh rate monitors capable to render 144hz or 165hz for competitive gaming like how professional gamers would want, then your other PC parts should be capable to support the high refresh rates.

The following is the hardware that you would want to have on your PC setup to achieve gameplay:

Gaming Monitors With 144hz or 165hz

Gaming Monitor

Most 144hz or 165hz monitors tend to go up to 1440p, but there are a few that also offer 4k resolution.

Some of our recommended monitors are:

  • Dell S3220DGF – 165Hz refresh rate, Quad HD (1440p) resolution, and 32 inches large curved panel – Buy here.
  • Pixio PX277 Prime – 165Hz refresh rate, native 1440p resolution, and 27 inches flat screen – Buy here.
  • Gigabyte M32U – 144Hz refresh rate, 4k resolution, and 24-48 inches choice – Buy here.

Graphics Card/Graphics Quality

Powerful Graphics Card (GPU)

Choosing a graphics card for your ideal monitor be it with a 144 refresh rate or 165 refresh rate, you want to choose a graphics processing unit that can output high frames per second.

Anything below 60hz isn’t worth it.

Screen tearing can also happen if your graphics card isn’t able to output a high enough frame rate from its graphics settings that can match your monitor’s refresh rate.

The most popular graphics card choices for most gamers looking for a high-end 144hz or 165hz monitor with a higher refresh rate would be the RTX 2070, RTX 2080, and the RTX 2080 Ti.

All of these are from Nvidia’s new lineup of graphics cards called the RTX series which has real-time ray tracing technology for better graphics quality that can match your monitor’s refresh rate.

These cards can output a high frame rate on most if not all games out in the market as of the moment and are future-proof for upcoming games in the next years.

Processor (CPU)

Processor (CPU) Closup

A good quality processor that would be able to render high frames per second on most if not all games would be the Intel Core i7 8700k and above or the AMD Ryzen 7 2700x and above.

These processors can handle most if not all games on max settings while also being able to output high frame rates.

RAM

RAM stick closeup

The recommended RAM for your gaming PC to load fast without the annoying lags is 16GB but if you have more funds, you can choose 32GB RAM. The higher the bandwidth, the better the performance of your 144hz or 165hz monitor which has a higher refresh rate.

The top picks for RAM include TEAMGROUP T-Force Xtreem ARGB 3600MHz CL18 16GB Kit, Corsair Dominator Platinum RGB 16GB, and G.Skill 32GB DDR4 Trident Z.

Storage

SSD and HDD drive

Having fast storage is also important for smooth gaming. You should get an SSD with at least 500GB capacity but if you can afford it, choose 1TB or even 2TB SSDs.

Though having an HDD or an SSD does not affect your refresh rate, having a proper SSD will help avoid lag.

Operating System (OS)

Windows 11 Operating System

You also need to have a good quality operating system to be able to utilize the high frame rates of your gaming monitor. The recommended OS would be Windows 10 64-bit since it can take full advantage of the hardware that you have on your gaming PC.


Conclusion: Which One Should I Choose? 144hz or 165hz Monitor?

So which one should you choose between 144hz vs 165hz monitors? When choosing between a 144hz and 165hz monitor, it’s important to consider your needs and what you will be using it for.

If you’re into competitive gaming and would want to have an edge over your opponents, then you should go for the 165hz monitor which is the better monitor option.

But if you’re more of a casual gamer and would just want a smooth gaming experience, then the 144hz monitor is already good enough. 144hz monitors are still a good choice since they offer reduced input lag and even smoother visuals.

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Article by Jake

Hey I'm Jake! Writer for various gaming and technology blogs. I also enjoy a little bit of golf in my free time as well as gaming. I really enjoy competitive games and I hate to admit it, but I have really been enjoying Wild Rift on my phone as I get the League experience without the rage. Usually you'll find me on Steam though exploring the many competitive options out there, whether that is a Battle Royale game or a MOBA game.

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