QHD seems to be a more viable resolution for PS5 given the fact that 4K games are too taxing on its hardware.
As such, it is making more and more sense for buyers to consider the QHD 1440P monitors instead of the 4K monitors since they cost a lot less.
But when it comes to the question of does PS5 support 1440P 120Hz display mode in the first place, the answer has been a roller coaster ride.
As it stands today, PS5 DOES support NATIVE 1440P displays at a 120Hz refresh rate.
When PS5 first came, it did not have any support for 1440P resolution. However, with the September 2022 update, PS5 has finally launched support for dedicated 1440P monitors.
1440P Resolution and PS5’s Mood Swings
When the PS5 first came out in 2020, 1440P resolution was simply not supported at all. If you had a QHD monitor back then, then PS5 would have dialed the resolution down to FHD only.
At that PS5 only supported either FHD and 4K at 60Hz or 120Hz.
Over time, PS5 changed its mind and included support for 1440P at 120Hz on 4K monitors or TV. But you had to have a 4K TV or a monitor with an HDMI 2.1 in the first place and they were super expensive.
Things started to change in September of 2022 when PS5 finally launched support for dedicated 1440P monitors, but there was a catch. The VRR, or the Variable Refresh Rate, feature that fixes stutters and screen tears was not included with 1440P monitor support.
In the final instance of the mood swing in March of 2023, PS5 finally decided to launch the 7.0 update that includes VRR support for 1440P resolution.
Does PS5 Support 1440P 120Hz?
Fortunately, the answer to the question as of the recent updates is a yes. PS5 DOES support 1440P resolution at a 120Hz refresh rate.
And unlike previously where 1440P was only supported as a downscale resolution on 4K monitors, PS5 supports dedicated NATIVE 1440P monitors or TVs.
However, whether a game would actually be playable at 1440P @ 120FPS depends upon the title itself. Not all games offer support for 1440P resolution that too at 120 FPS.
PS5 Downscale For 4K Games to 1440p That Do Not Have Native 1440P Support
Of course, many games are not optimized or have native support for 1440P resolution.
Hence, while 1440P monitor will work with all the games, if the game does not have a NATIVE 1440P mode, PS5 will render the image in 4K and then downscale it to 1440P. The frame rate will stay the same as set by the developer.
So a game that has a native 4K @ 30 FPS mode WILL NOT work at a faster frame rate on a 1440P monitor UNLESS it particularly has a specific mode for 1440P monitors at a higher frame rate.
God of War Ragnarok is an excellent example. This game has 6 display modes. For a native 4K display, it would work at a 30 FPS max (Favor Quality mode).
At the same time, it also has a specific mode for 1440P displays (Favor Performance + HFR + VRR) that would unlock the frame rate up to 60 FPS giving you a balance of quality AND performance.
Also Read: Does PS5 Support 165Hz Monitor?
VRR is Supported Only with HDMI 2.1
While the VRR feature DOES work for 1440P resolution, the 1440P in question would NEED to have an HDMI 2.1 for it to work.
Unfortunately, though, the majority of 1440P monitors with 120Hz refresh rate support ONLY have an HDMI 2.0 input, hence the VRR will not be supported.
HDMI 2.1 is often only seen on monitors and TVs that support 4K @ 120 Hz or more.
The following table explains the HDMI versions and the specs they offer further.
|1080P = 60Hz
1440P = 30Hz
|4K (4096 x 2160)
|1080P = 120Hz
1440P = 60Hz
4K = 30Hz
|4K (4096 x 2160)
|1080P = 240Hz
1440P = 144Hz
4K = 60Hz
|8K (7680 x 4320)
|1440P = 240Hz
4K = 144Hz
4K = 240Hz (DSC)
8K = 120Hz (DSC)
So while dedicated 1440P 120Hz monitors do work with PS5, you will need to sacrifice the VRR feature since many 1440P monitors lack an HDMI 2.1 input port.
4K Downscale at 120Hz is Not Supported on HDMI 2.0 Displays
Another important point to note is that since the majority of the QHD monitors have an HDMI 2.0, downscaling 4K @ 120 FPS game is simply not possible since it is too much bandwidth for an HDMI 2.0 interface.
You don’t have to worry about this much since there are literally only a few (almost negligible number of) games that can support 4K @ 120 FPS.
The PS5 and the Resolution Tango: 4K vs 1440P
The demand for 4K resolution has gotten a reality check on PS5.
When the next-gen consoles including PS5 came onto the scene, gamers far and wide rejoiced at the next-gen console’s ability to support 4K resolution at atleast 60 FPS.
However, in 2022 it soon became evident that these high specs are just too demanding for the recent AAA tiles.
Take for instance the likes of Dying Light 2, Gotham Knights, and God of War Ragnarok all of which work at a maximum supported display mode of 4K @ 30 FPS.
And then there were some insane games like The Plague Tale: Requiem that only has a maximum of 1440P support 1t 40 FPS max (no support for 4K at all).
And of course, 30FPS does not sit right with gamers. 30 FPS was good for the last generation of gaming consoles, but certainly not for PS5.
The issue, of course, is the feeble hardware that just cannot pump out enough frames per second at 4K resolution.
Hence, gamers who do not wish to sacrifice performance over quality, are actually demanding a balance between the two. This gives way to the 1440P resolution.
Games at 1440P can be optimized for BOTH quality and FPS. Best of both worlds.
Also Read: How to Get 120 FPS on PS5 Fortnite?