A new report revealed that running modern games on vintage CRT monitors produces incredible visual fidelity, to the point that the CRT monitors are actually upgrades to LCD monitors, apparently all the way up to current OLED display versions of that type. Gaming monitors are notoriously finicky test subjects that can often lead to subjective discrepancies among people who use them - for instance, fighting game players have maintained that CRT televisions are by far the best choice for certain titles, while competitive Fortnite players experienced a period of time when it was important to use stretched screen resolutions to perform their best - before Epic Games banned it.
Modern technology is, naturally, almost always an improvement on its predecessors, at least when it comes to pure technological specs and performance. In context, many old gaming peripherals have withstood the test of time, including controllers like the GameCube, which remains a popular addition to Nintendo console owners even now that the Switch is the current generation device. With monitors, though, there's always been a place for CRT tech - CRT doesn't have upscaling blur or native resolution issues, and motion resolution is crisp while display lag basically doesn't exist. That hasn't always equated to belief that they simply perform better than LCD monitors, though, especially when it comes to modern gaming.
A new report from Digital Foundry, however, has conclusively proven that CRT monitors overperform with modern games, doing better than LCD counterparts many years younger. In a video explaining modern games on CRT monitors as part of a recognition of the growing trend to pick up this technology for nostalgic gamers, the analysts found that the CRT monitors were doing suspiciously well - not because they're renowned to be bad, but more because the common logic here would suggest modern games have moved beyond what the tech is capable of.
That's not the case, however. Host Rich Leadbetter showcases a Sony CRT monitor - to be fair, one of the best ever made - and it produces wild results. At the very least, it's worth considering whether or not gamers gave up on CRT technology too soon, given that it was dropped in the early 2000s and has never been picked back up by companies. Given the retro aesthetic and surprising performance, it's also worth wondering whether or not companies will see this and cash in on the buzz by releasing a cheap modern CRT for fans to try out.
The fact that the CRT monitor can crisply display Remedy's Control with such a smooth performance is a great example of how out-dated tech can be given new life by those willing to experiment with it. By no means will CRT monitors completely replace the current consumer market - there are still plenty of monitors using more current technology that will outperform the CRT. However, it's a nice throwback that lends further fuel to the argument that the "golden age" of gaming might have been between the late 90s and early 00s, as PC gamers literally didn't know how good they had it until now.
Source: Digital Foundry/YouTube