IPS vs TN vs VA – Which Panel Type Should I Choose?

Another factor that could affect your overall image quality is the display panel type. There are three popular panel technologies – IPS, TN and VA. All three panel technologies have their own advantages and disadvantages which is important you check and consider before choosing one that would suit you.

TN (Twisted Nematic) Panel

Most often, nowadays, TN panels are found in gaming monitors. The reason behind this is because it offers the quickest response time speed. In fact, most of the newer TN monitors have a rapid 1ms response time. This means, you will not have to worry about ghosting/trailing nor about motion blur of fast-moving objects whenever you are playing fast-paced games.

TN panel gaming monitors when paired with high refresh rate would assure its users smooth gaming experience. This is why this should be your first choice if you are a professional FPS gamer.

The downside however, TNs would have one of the worst color reproduction. It also has narrow viewing angles which could cause your image to change color and contrast when you view it from a different angle.

Do not worry as viewing angles will not be an issue as long as you sit in front of the monitor. The more important thing is the performance of this monitor rather than colors. If you are good with that, then TN is perfect for you.

IPS (In-Plane Switching) Panel

If you would like to have accurate and consistent colors, IPS panels are for you. It also has wide 178 degree viewing angles. This means, you could look at the screen from any angle without having to worry about color and contrast. Hence, if you are a designer or a photographer, the IPS panel monitor is perfect for you.

The downside of IPS monitors is it has a slower response time speed (4ms or 5ms GtG). However, for casual gamers, this is not noticeable. Ghosting and motion blur could occur but this is not really an issue unless you are playing hardcore competitive FPS.

A good UPS panel display like the LG 27GL850 actually offers 1ms pixel response time just like TN monitors.

Another main downside of IPS monitor is its IPS glow wherein you will notice light glowing around the corners of your screen. This could be a little annoying when you are watching pitch black scenes or you are watching in a dim-lit room. Another thing that you will have to keep in mind when choosing a monitor is that IPS does not have a high contrast compared to VA panels which means VA monitors would have a more noticeable blacks than IPS.

Back in the days, IPS are more expensive compared to TN models. However, nowadays they are now just slightly more expensive. Here are several variations of IPS panels:

  • PLS (Plane to Line Switching) by Samsung
  • AAS (Azimuthal Anchoring Switch) by InnoLux
  • AHVA (Advanced Hyper-Viewing Angles) by AU Optronics
  • IPS, AH-IPS, Nano IPS by LG

All the mentioned panels come with wide viewing angles, consistent colors and good pixel response time.

LG’s Nano IPS panels come with the widest color gamut support. It also comes with the fastest pixel response time speed. AU Optronics, however, makes very fast IPS panel just like the one used in MSI MAG251RX.

VA (Vertical Alignment) Panel

VA panel offers superior static contrast ratio. Most VA panels have contrast ration between 2000:1 and 3000:1. This means you will see more deeper blacks and brighter whites. This also means that the pixels will take longer to change from deep blacks to lighter shades. As for their response time speed, they have 4-5ms which could work slower in transitioning from black to white. This is the reason why you should avoid this type on monitor if you are a hardcore FPS player. However, if you do not mind smearing, and you would love to have a more amazing image quality then this monitor is perfect for you.

Samsung VA panels are used in Odyssey G7 and G9 gaming monitors. These monitors have balanced image quality and performance with deep blacks and fast pixel transitions. However, they are a bit more expensive as well.

Furthermore, VA panel monitors also have wide color gamut which is as good as IPS monitors. However, take in mind that VA displays are not as consistent as IPS technology. Do not worry as uniformity issues are not that noticeable for everyday use. However, if you use your monitor for color critical work, using IPS monitors are more recommended.

VA panel displays are perfect for watching movies in dark rooms. They also come with 178-degree angles and has some minor adjustments in contrast and brightness at certain angles.

VA panels are marketed as:

  • MVA (Multidomain Vertical Alignment)
  • P-MVA, S-MVA
  • AMVA (Advanced MVA)


We hope through this article; we were able to help you choose the most suitable panel type for you. All in all, if you are a serious competitive gamer, TN monitors are highly recommended. For color critical type of work, IPS monitors are suggest.

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