Your guide

budget monitor featured image

Credit: Ankit Banerjee / Android Authority

Be it for video editing, gaming, or simply to enhance your home office experience, a great monitor can make all the difference. Choosing the right one isn’t particularly easy though and some of the best options can cost you thousands of dollars. That said, not everyone wants or even needs to spend a lot of money to get an excellent monitor. These may not be the most feature-packed or come with fancy designs, but here are some of the best budget monitors you can get right now, priced at under $250.

The best budget monitors:

  1. AOC 27G2
  2. Sceptre E255B-1658A
  3. Sceptre C305B-200UN
  4. AOC CQ27G1
  5. Philips 276E8VJSB
  6. Acer SB230

1. AOC 27G2

aoc full hd monitor with 144hz refresh rate

The AOC 27G2 are some of the best gaming monitors you can buy if you’re working with a budget. The 27-inch device has a Full HD IPS panel with a 144Hz refresh rate and Nvidia G-Sync and AMD FreeSync compatibility, a 1ms response time, and low input lag. Your port needs are likely covered with the availability of two HDMI ports, DisplayPort 1.2, a four USB 3.0 ports. It also comes with built-in speakers and audio input and output (3.5mm headphone jack) lines.

It helps that it’s a good looking monitor two, with a three-sided frameless design. You can set it at different angles, adjust the height, and even mount it on the wall (VESA compatible). What users will also appreciate is the three-year zero dead pixel guarantee that AOC provides. The 27G2 has a lot going for it, especially when you consider how affordable it is.


2. Sceptre E255B-1658A

sceptre budget monitor for gaming

Sceptre pushes the refresh rate even further and comes with a 165Hz panel with AMD FreeSync compatibility. Like the AOC G2, the Sceptre 24.5-inch monitor has a Full HD resolution and 1ms response time as well. However, it is a TN (twisted nematic) panel, so the color reproduction and viewing angles aren’t as good as what you get with an IPS counterpart.

As far as ports and features go, you get two HDMI ports, DisplayPort 1.2, a headphone jack, and integrated speakers. You can tilt the screen, adjust the height, or mount it on the wall too. The AOC 27G2 is arguably the better option of the two. However, the Sceptre more than gets the job done and lets you save a decent chunk of money as well.


3. Sceptre C305B-200UN

sceptre curved display

The Sceptre C305B is not only one of the most affordable ultrawide monitors around, but it’s also a pretty good for gaming as well. It offers an impressive 200Hz refresh rate and is compatible with AMD FreeSync. The 30-inch monitor comes with a curved screen with a Full HD (2560 x 1080) resolution and 21:9 aspect ratio. It’s a TN panel so the color accuracy isn’t great.

When it comes to connectivity, you get a couple of HDMI (HDMI 2.0 and HDMI 1.4) ports, DisplayPort 1.2, a headphone jack, and two built-in speakers. You can tilt the screen and it is compatible with select wall mounts. Like the other Sceptre monitor on this list, the C305B is quite cheap, which is great given how expensive ultrawide monitors can get.


4. AOC CQ27G1

aoc curved display with 2k resolution

Another fantastic budget-friendly curved monitor is the AOC CQ27G1. It shares a lot of specs and features with the AOC 27G2, like a 144Hz refresh rate, AMD FreeSync compatibility, and a 1ms response rate. You also get two HDMI ports, DisplayPort 1.2, and a headphone jack.

However, this 27-inch panel is not only curved, but also comes with a higher 2K (2560 x 1440) resolution. It is also a VA (vertical alignment) panel that features great viewing angles and color reproduction. This monitor is definitely a good option for anyone who has any color-critical work. It’s also one of the cheapest 2K monitors you can get.


5. Philips 276E8VJSB

philips 4k uhd monitor

It’s not easy to find a budget-friendly 4K monitor at under $250. Luckily, Philips has you covered with this 27-inch monitor. Its big selling point, of course, is the fact that it comes with a 4K UHD (3840 x 2160) resolution. It’s also an IPS panel, allowing for excellent viewing angles, good color reproduction, and high brightness. You get two HDMI ports and DisplayPort 1.2 as well.

It has a 60Hz refresh rate and doesn’t support AMD FreeSync, so it isn’t the best option for gamers. It supports HDCP 2.2 though, so you shouldn’t have any problems streaming 4K UHD content from streaming services that offer it. Something worth noting is that the stand is tilt-only and there aren’t any holes for VESA (wall mount) compatibility. Ultimately, this Philips monitor has its pros and cons, depending on exactly what you’re looking for. However, it’s one of the cheapest 4K monitors you can get right now.


6. Acer SB230

acer budget display

The Acer SB230 doesn’t do much to distinguish itself when compared to the other options on this list. It’s specs and features are quite standard for an affordable monitor. You get a 23-inch IPS LCD screen with a Full HD resolution and 75Hz refresh rate. It comes with an impressive 1ms response time though and supports AMD FreeSync, so it’s even a decent option for gamers.

It comes with one HDMI port, a VGA port, and an audio port as well. The monitor can tilt, but it isn’t the most obvious mechanism. There’s no built-in option to mount it on a wall though. Ultimately, what makes the Acer SB230 an excellent option is its price point. If you’re looking for a larger option, you can go for the 27-inch version for an additional $50. A 22-inch model is also available that’s even cheaper. It may not be the most feature-packed, but these Acer monitors are definitely the cheapest.


That’s the end of this roundup of some of the best budget-friendly monitors you can get for under $250. Interested in other options?