It’s a rough time to update your graphics card due to surging prices caused by cryptocurrency mining and video memory prices, but that doesn’t mean you can’t put that money toward other upgrades. For example, AOC, one of the big names in the gaming-monitor space, has a new product in its Agon gaming line for those of you wanting to put about $400 to $500 toward improving your rig.
The AOC AG322QCX is a curved 32-inch QHD display that is available now at tech retailer Microcenter for $430. It has a 16:9 resolution of 2,560-by-1,440, and it runs at 144Hz for gaming at 144 frames per second. It’s a VA LCD panel with a 4ms response time as well as AMD’s FreeSync tech, which helps to prevent ugly screen tearing without hurting a game’s performance.
At $430, that’s a relatively affordable high-end gaming monitor. It’s not 4K, HDR, or IPS, but those are all sacrifices worth making, and not just to save some cash. You can take advantage of the 144Hz refresh rate better at 1440p. PC gaming HDR has still not fully matured. And the VA display won’t produce colors as accurately as an IPS panel, but it has a faster response time that’s crucial to gamers.
AOC is also including some of its quality-of-life features like Shadow Control, FlickerFree technology, and LowBlue Mode. Shadow Control enables players to turn up the contrast on dark areas of the screen to create a more immersive image. FlickerFree reduces eye strain due to the pixels shifting between light phases. And LowBlue gives the monitor a red tint since research suggests blue light in the evening makes it more difficult for people to fall asleep.
If you set aside money for a Radeon RX Vega 56 that you can’t find right now, you could probably spend that money on something like the new Agon and then wait to upgrade your GPU until the market calms down.