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Computer Monitor Help?

I've been looking for a new monitor for the last couple of weeks and I've come across this, it gets very good reviews and has all the specs I'm looking for (144Hz,1080p, etc...) but I do not understand what G-sync/free sync means, well whichever this monitor has it only works with AMD GPUs, I have an Nvidia GPU, what does this mean for the monitor?
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  1. G-Sync is a proprietary Nvidia technology, you must have a compatible card (Anything in the last few releases should do, 900 and 1000 series, as well as some 700 series cards support it) and a matching monitor.

    Free-Sync / Adapative Sync is part of the Display Port standard. AMD graphics cards, going back quite a ways now, support this feature.

    What they both essentially accomplish is slaving the Monitor to the GPU so that the GPU controls the refresh rate of the monitor. This means frames are only drawn when the card has a ready frame and only at the beginning of a refresh cycle. This means no screen tearing and smooth gameplay when your GPU can't produce enough frames (effectively).

    Regardless of which technology you go with the monitors themselves are still 144hz panels, so you can use V-Sync, which fixes the monitors refresh rate and limits the GPU to only drawing at the beginning of cycle. That can still lead to tearing if your GPU can't keep up.

    Or no sync at all. This means the GPU puts out as many frames as it can render. And the monitor grabs whatever is in the frame buffer at the beginning of a cycle. This always leads to tearing, but if the FPS is fast enough it won't be terribly noticeable. The upside is that there is as little input lag as possible since you aren't waiting on anything. You can also then use things like ULMB and Light Boost to get rid of ghosting or increase brightness.

    G-sync is more expensive because it is a custom module that runs the monitor. Free-sync still uses the traditional scalar in the monitor, essentially a cheaper software solution.

    End result is: If you get a free-sync monitor and have an Nvidia GPU you can't use Free-sync or G-Sync. If you get a G-Sync monitor with an AMD GPU you can't use G-Sync or Free-Sync. But this isn't the end of the world, either configuration will let you use the monitor.
  2. Those are trade names for their implementation of adaptive sync:

    http://www.amd.com/en-us/innovations/software-technologies/technologies-gaming/freesync

    http://www.geforce.com/hardware/technology/g-sync

    This means the monitor will work as a normal monitor with your Nvidia GPU, and will not sync the refresh rate of the monitor to the GPU output. Nvidia charges monitor manufacturers a hefty royalty fee to put that Nvidia-exclusive feature in their products, so Gsync monitors are more expensive as a result.
  3. I should add there are a few HDMI Free-Sync monitors out there, numbers are growing.

    Not sure it will happen, but it would be neat to see a G-sync over DP + Free-Sync via HDMI. But that would probably require a really expensive design.
  4. Eximo said:
    G-Sync is a proprietary Nvidia technology, you must have a compatible card (Anything in the last few releases should do, 900 and 1000 series, as well as some 700 series cards support it) and a matching monitor.

    Free-Sync / Adapative Sync is part of the Display Port standard. AMD graphics cards, going back quite a ways now, support this feature.

    What they both essentially accomplish is slaving the Monitor to the GPU so that the GPU controls the refresh rate of the monitor. This means frames are only drawn when the card has a ready frame and only at the beginning of a refresh cycle. This means no screen tearing and smooth gameplay when your GPU can't produce enough frames (effectively).

    Regardless of which technology you go with the monitors themselves are still 144hz panels, so you can use V-Sync, which fixes the monitors refresh rate and limits the GPU to only drawing at the beginning of cycle. That can still lead to tearing if your GPU can't keep up.

    Or no sync at all. This means the GPU puts out as many frames as it can render. And the monitor grabs whatever is in the frame buffer at the beginning of a cycle. This always leads to tearing, but if the FPS is fast enough it won't be terribly noticeable. The upside is that there is as little input lag as possible since you aren't waiting on anything. You can also then use things like ULMB and Light Boost to get rid of ghosting or increase brightness.

    G-sync is more expensive because it is a custom module that runs the monitor. Free-sync still uses the traditional scalar in the monitor, essentially a cheaper software solution.

    End result is: If you get a free-sync monitor and have an Nvidia GPU you can't use Free-sync or G-Sync. If you get a G-Sync monitor with an AMD GPU you can't use G-Sync or Free-Sync. But this isn't the end of the world, either configuration will let you use the monitor.


    I have a GTX 1070, so not an AMD GPU, is it still worth getting this monitor or not? If not, could you recommend an alternative?

    Thanks
  5. Best answer
    That all comes down to how much you are willing to spend. G-sync monitors are about $100 extra compared to Free Sync monitors.

    The ever popular 144hz monitor: http://pcpartpicker.com/product/rkphP6/asus-monitor-vg248qe

    It is worth the extra money because it comes with an adjustable stand. Most of the other monitors in this class have a fixed height.

    MQ248Q is a decent choice all around, has free-sync, but is also a nice TN panel. For some slight savings there are a few Acer models to look at that have free-sync.

    G-Sync starts at around $400
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