Should I Opt For A Matte Or Glossy Display For Gaming?


Whether you are using your screen for work or simply want to play a good game, the kind of screen will matter. You can choose between a matte or glossy screen.

Gaming can involve long hours of staring at a screen, and you will want to pick the right one for the best performance.

Before you opt for a screen, you will have to consider the features, advantages, and disadvantages of using a matte or a glossy screen. Read ahead as we help you choose the best one for all your gaming needs.

Matte and Glossy Screens for Gaming

Before you go ahead and pick the right screen for gaming, you will want to understand the individual characteristics of both matte and glossy screens. Read ahead to find out.

Matte Screens

Matte monitors are considered a rational option in a real-world setting. They use plastic surfaces that are made using an etching process that uses a variety of polymers.

This process can be chemical or mechanical in nature. This etching will leave your matte screen with many indents that will scatter the light and reduce reflectivity.

Advantages of Matte Screens

On the positive side, your eyes will be saved from the harsh glare. You will also find that these monitors are much easier to maintain. This is because the screen does not catch onto the fingerprints or any external influences as easily as glossy screens do. 

Further, the monitors today are getting brighter as the days go by. With monitors today, you will be able to get 500 to 1000 nit panels that are compatible with the requirements of DisplayHDR 500 and Display HDR 1000.

For your screen, this simply means that the materials on the matte monitor will remain just about the same. However, as monitors get brighter, the colors will also show up much better. This makes matte a good choice for a monitor.

Disadvantages of Matte Screens 

The idea with a matte screen is that glare is reduced as much as possible. However, this feature also comes with its own downside. The largest one is that it also tends to block light. It also means that the light output from your screen is blocked. 

The image and image illumination is reduced to give you a much fainter image. Minute details on the screen will not be as visible, and the contrast between colors is also reduced. Yes, you will notice that much of the liveliness of colors is reduced when you opt for this screen. 

What Does This Mean for Gaming?

Matte displays are a great option for gaming in the long run as you can avoid any stress on your eyes. It is largely because the glare is minimal. Further, these screens sit well in most lights due to the same feature.

As you game, you won’t have to place a lamp around your gaming station to illuminate the area. This is because you won’t have to worry about any reflections. Further, you won’t have to keep your curtains drawn at all times as you game if you use a matte screen. 

For gamers who like touchscreens, this may come as a disadvantage. Matte screens rarely come in this variety, and you may have to stick to a glossy screen if a touch screen is your priority. 

Glossy Screens

A glossy screen monitor that is bright and shiny is made using polymers or reflective materials. These screens are extremely transparent and allow much of the brightness of the monitor to peep through for a vivid image to form. 

You will be able to see much richer colors and deeper darks when you use a glossy screen. 

Advantages of Glossy Screens

With a glossy screen, you can expect the color to be reproduced with clarity and vibrancy. It does not come with an anti-reflection coating and hence is extremely smooth. You will be able to view rich contrast as well. When gaming, this can add to the visual aesthetics of it all.

These screens are also very easy to clean and appear like a piece of glass. You won’t find any residual dirt once you clean this surface clean.

Disadvantages of Glossy Screens

The main issue with glossy screens is that they are extremely reflexive under bright light. This feature will even let you see a reflection of yourself on the screen. Further, too much light can cause the kind of glare that will disrupt your vision.

They are also not the best screen for your eyesight. Under many circumstances, it can be very hard to see a glossy screen as is. If there is a bright light source just opposite your screen, this makes it difficult for you to view it. 

The health issues from this can be significant. For instance, there have been studies that suggest that glossy screens and their glares can contribute to severe headaches and eyestrain. 

As easy as these screens are to clean, they also tend to get dirtier as fast. They attract fingerprints quite easily. It will also likely get smudged as easily. Further, any dirt and dust will be very visible on the screen.

Do note that with these glossy screens, you will have to increase your cleaning efforts and get to it often.

What Does This Mean for Gaming?

For gamers, this simply means that glossy screens can give you the best images in vivid and bright colors. You will be able to see minute details and spot any contrast.

However, the eyestrain and the issues with the glare can make gaming extremely uncomfortable in the long-term. 

Should I Pick Matte or Glossy for Gaming?

So far, you have taken a look at the advantages of both matte and glossy screens. You have also seen how these can affect gaming. You can now take a detailed look at which screen you should go ahead and pick for your particular gaming needs. 

Color Features

Unless you are a gamer who also designs graphics for games, a matte screen should be the better option. 

This is because the output of color is not as important to a regular and consistent gamer.

Hence, the color accuracy of a matte screen should be just right for the purposes of gaming.

The Location of Your Screen

Since we are considering reflection, the location of your monitor also makes quite the difference. Most gamers use their display indoors, and many may even have a separate room for the same. 

If you have the resources and are willing to put in the effort to maintain a darker room with no light sources, a glossy screen can be appropriate for you. However, you may be a gamer who prefers to play in well-ventilated spaces with plenty of light.

In this case, you can opt for a matte screen as it will save you a lot of effort in keeping the glare away. 

Gaming Time

Also translated as screen time, this refers to the amount of time you spend staring at the screen and playing your game. Most gamers love their games enough to spend a significant amount of time before their screens. 

If this is the case with you, it is a great idea to opt for a matte screen. A glossy screen with high screen time will most likely have a negative effect on your health. Your eyesight will suffer, and you may have severe headaches in the long run with a glossy screen.

Alternatives to the Two

If you must have the best of both worlds, technology has advanced enough to give you access to some alternatives. If you must have a glossy screen, it is a good idea to supplement this with an anti-glare screen protector.

This should keep you healthier and your screen away from any unwanted glares. If you need the glossy screen, you will just have to remove the anti-glare protector, and you are good to go. 

You can also opt for a semi-glossy screen. These screens bring about a balance between a glossy and a matte screen. These come with a haze value between 12% to 18%. This is lower than the haze value attributed to a standard matte screen that is about 25%. 

For gamers, this may be an alternative to the regular matte screen that often compromises on image vibrancy and contrast. Hence, if picking between a glossy and matte screen is difficult, this may be the option for you.


For any gamer, long hours of gaming is the norm. Many gamers have their own dedicated spaces that will let them play away to their heart’s delight. If you are a serious gamer, you may want to compare the advantages and disadvantages of the screen options available to you.

We have discussed both matte and glossy screens above. We have also suggested a solution between the two for gamers who play in different locations and for different time durations. With this, you should be able to pick the screen that adds to your gaming experience best.

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