Is 165Hz Refresh Rate Good (or Overkill)?

is 165hz refresh rate good

Gamers on the hunt for a competitive edge are constantly chasing the next big thing in display technology. Enter the 165Hz refresh rate monitor, boasting a silky smooth picture that promises to revolutionize your gameplay. But is this upgrade worth the extra cash? Let’s dive into the world of refresh rates, explore the benefits of 165Hz, and see if it’s the right fit for you.

Refresh Rate

Refresh rate refers to the number of times a display refreshes the image on the screen in one second. Measured in Hertz (Hz), a higher refresh rate translates to smoother visuals. Standard monitors typically come with a 60Hz refresh rate, meaning the image updates 60 times per second. While this might be sufficient for basic tasks like browsing the web, it can feel sluggish in fast-paced scenarios, especially during gaming.

Benefits of a 165Hz Refresh Rate

Think of a flipbook. The faster you flip the pages, the smoother the animation appears. Similarly, a higher refresh rate translates to more frames being displayed per second, resulting in a significantly smoother and more fluid visual experience. But the advantages of a 165Hz refresh rate go beyond just aesthetics. Let’s delve into some key benefits.

Smoother Gameplay

Imagine yourself locked in an intense online battle. Every millisecond counts as you dodge bullets and unleash attacks. With a 165Hz monitor, you’ll witness the action unfold with unparalleled fluidity. By displaying 165 frames per second compared to the standard 60fps, you’ll experience:

  • Sharper visuals with reduced motion blur, allowing you to track fast-moving objects with greater precision.
  • A more responsive feel, making your actions translate to the screen with minimal delay.
  • An overall more immersive and enjoyable gaming experience.

Studies have shown that higher refresh rates can even lead to improved reaction times in fast-paced games. Imagine the edge you’ll have when every millisecond counts!

Reduced Screen Tearing

Ever noticed jagged lines tearing across your screen during fast-paced moments? This unpleasant visual artifact, known as screen tearing, occurs when your graphics card sends frames at a different rate than your monitor can refresh. Higher refresh rates like 165Hz significantly reduce the chances of screen tearing, ensuring a pristine and uninterrupted viewing experience.

Potential Competitive Edge

In the realm of competitive gaming, every frame counts. A 165Hz monitor can give you a slight edge over opponents using lower refresh rate displays. The smoother visuals and reduced input lag can allow you to react faster and make split-second decisions with greater accuracy. While the advantage might be subtle, for professional gamers or highly competitive individuals, even the slightest edge can make a world of difference.

Considering a 165Hz Monitor: Is it Right for You?

is 165hz refresh rate good
If you’re currently using a standard 60Hz monitor, the jump to 165Hz will be a revelation

So, you’re intrigued by the potential benefits of a 165Hz monitor? Here are some factors to consider before taking the plunge.

Upgrading from 60Hz

If you’re currently using a standard 60Hz monitor, the jump to 165Hz will be a revelation. The difference in smoothness and responsiveness is immediately noticeable, especially in fast-paced games. It’s like experiencing your favorite games for the first time, with a newfound level of visual fidelity.

The 144Hz vs 165Hz Debate

Many high refresh rate monitors offer a 144Hz refresh rate as well. The difference between 144Hz and 165Hz is relatively small, and some users might not perceive a significant visual improvement. However, for some gamers, especially those in highly competitive environments, the extra 21 frames per second can provide a slight edge.

Here’s a table summarizing the key differences.

Is 165hz Refresh Rate Good

Ultimately, the decision between 144Hz and 165Hz comes down to personal preference and budget. If you’re a casual gamer or prioritize affordability, a 144Hz monitor might be the sweet spot, offering a significant upgrade from standard 60Hz displays without pushing the budget as much. But for competitive gamers or those seeking the absolute smoothest possible experience, a 165Hz monitor can provide that extra edge and visual delight.

Other Monitor Features to Consider

is 165hz refresh rate good
IPS panels are known for excellent viewing angles and color accuracy, ideal for creative work and general use

While refresh rate is a crucial factor, it’s not the only aspect to consider when choosing a monitor. Here are some other important features to keep in mind.


Resolution refers to the number of pixels displayed on the screen. Higher resolutions like 1440p (2560 x 1440) and 4K (3840 x 2160) offer sharper visuals and a more immersive experience, but require a powerful graphics card to run smoothly at high refresh rates like 165Hz.

Panel Type

Different panel types offer varying advantages and disadvantages. Here’s a quick breakdown.

    • IPS Panels: Known for excellent viewing angles and color accuracy, ideal for creative work and general use. May have slightly slower response times compared to other panel types.
    • TN Panels: Offer the fastest response times, perfect for competitive gaming. Typically have narrower viewing angles and less vibrant colors compared to IPS panels.
    • VA Panels: Provide a good balance between response time, viewing angles, and contrast. Often a good choice for gamers who also value good image quality.

Response Time

Measured in milliseconds (ms), response time indicates how quickly a pixel can change color. Lower response times are crucial for fast-paced games to minimize ghosting effects (trailing pixels). Aim for a response time of 4ms or less for optimal performance.

Final Thoughts

A 165Hz refresh rate monitor offers a significant leap in visual smoothness and responsiveness compared to standard 60Hz displays. Gamers, especially those who play fast-paced competitive titles, will likely benefit the most from the reduced input lag and potential competitive edge. However, the decision ultimately depends on your individual needs and budget.

If you prioritize affordability or are a casual gamer, a 144Hz monitor might be a perfectly suitable option. Remember to consider other factors like resolution, panel type, and response time when making your final choice.

There are also emerging display technologies like G-Sync and FreeSync that further enhance the visual experience by synchronizing the refresh rate of the monitor with the frame rate of your graphics card, eliminating screen tearing altogether. Explore these options if you’re looking for the absolute smoothest possible visuals.


Q. Do I need a powerful graphics card to run a 165Hz monitor?
A. Yes, to fully utilize a 165Hz refresh rate, you’ll need a graphics card capable of outputting at least 165 frames per second in your desired games.

Q. Is a 165Hz monitor worth it for everyday tasks?
A. While the benefits are most noticeable in fast-paced games, a 165Hz monitor can still provide a smoother experience for tasks like scrolling through web pages or watching videos. However, the value proposition might be less compelling for strictly non-gaming use cases.

Q. Can I overclock a 165Hz monitor?
A. While some monitors might allow for overclocking, exceeding the advertised refresh rate is not recommended. It can lead to visual artifacts and instability.

Q. What are some popular 165Hz monitors?
A. There are many excellent 165Hz monitors available on the market. Popular brands include Asus, Acer, LG, Samsung, and BenQ. Researching specific models and reading user reviews can help you find the best fit for your needs.