TechPowerUp 120 Hz Build Guide 22

TechPowerUp 120 Hz Build Guide

CPU, Motherboard & RAM »

Introduction

If 4K Ultra HD gaming was one approach to high-end gaming, the other is 2K-120 Hz, i.e. a high enough resolution—such as 2560 x 1440, or 3440 x 1440 if you're into ultra-wide monitors—at a refresh-rate of 120 Hz or above. 1440p monitors with such high refresh rates usually boast 144 Hz and offer two advantages—gaming with blazing fast visuals or stereoscopic 3D, with each eye-plane running at a pleasant 60 Hz.

120 Hz can be as transformative to the 60 Hz PC gaming mainstream as 60 Hz is to the 24-30 Hz console masses. Your eyes and brain can tell things apart at 120 Hz, and it gets very close to motion in the real world. Modern online multiplayer games are beginning to offer 120 TPS (ticks per second), which means that 120 inputs are sent to the server per second—online multiplayer games, first-person shooters in particular, should feel buttery smooth.


The popular Blur Busters UFO sprite used in high refresh-rate testing and monitor overclocking.

The other component to the high-refresh rate display we're building an entire PC around is adaptive sync. Even with the most powerful graphics processing machinery at your disposal, your game will always run into scenes where frame-rates drop while monitor refresh-rates stay stiff, resulting in a less-than-perfect micro-stutter. You'd ideally not want your games to spit out more frames per second than your monitor's refresh-rate to avoid screen "tearing." An arbitrary V-Sync would also give you a small amount of input lag. To address these and many other issues, both NVIDIA and AMD launched adaptive-sync technologies that dynamically adjust the refresh-rate of the monitor to stay in sync with the frame-rate of the GPU, rather than the other way around. The monitor and its companion graphics card we chose in this build feature NVIDIA's G-SYNC technology.
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