Watch out for this unexpected expense when buying a high-end PC for gaming

Not long ago, I decided to buy a bunch of expensive computer parts and put them together to make a high-octane, super-powerful gaming machine that would handle any game and ask for more.

The project would cost me a very pretty penny, but it’s not like I build expensive new computers every year, right? In fact, the parts I bought are so powerful they should last me a few years. It’s a “buy-the-best-less-often” kind of thing rather than “bye-cheap-more-often.” (OK, maybe I’m still trying to justify how expensive this thing was.)

But then came an unexpected cost that I completely forgot about when I was buying parts: The monitor. 

I actually already have a 1080p monitor, and it would totally suffice, as the parts I bought can play the latest, most resource-hungry games with all the graphics settings set to “max” perfectly smoothly. However, the new machine can handle games at super-high 4K resolution with most of the graphics settings set to “max,” too.

Essentially, the money I spent on parts could be considered a waste if I played games in “mere” 1080p. It simply wouldn’t do justice to the computer’s power, as well as my wallet.

If I wanted to play on a 1080p monitor, I could have bought less expensive parts that aren’t so powerful. Somehow, at that moment, I had just justified buying a 4K monitor to myself.

Thankfully, 4K monitors today are a lot less expensive than they used to be. You can pick up a 27-inch 4K monitor for between $375 and $1000. By contrast, a 27-inch 1080p monitors can cost between $150 and $1000.

Why not?

However, depending on how much you like to play video games (and how much you spent on your gaming machine), you may want to consider monitors that feature special tech from graphics card makers NVidia and AMD called “G-Sync” and “FreeSync,” respectively. They essentially ensure that your games play ultra smoothly, but they usually come at high premium price tag. 

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