Best 4K monitors 2021: the top Ultra HD displays with HDR and more

Discover the best 4K monitors for work, for photography, for gaming and much more

The best 4K monitors hero image showing a Ultra HD monitor being used to edit video
(Image credit: HP)

Welcome to T3's guide to the best 4K monitors in 2021. Here you'll find the very best 4K monitors around, and the best prices to buy them for. 

No matter how big your budget or how big you need your 4K display to be, we're confident that these budget, mid-range and premium 4K monitors will include the perfect monitor for you.

The price of 4K panels has dropped considerably in recent years, and that means that the best 4K monitors - and the best gaming monitors – aren't necessarily going to cost a fortune. 

Our guide to the best 4K monitors is for every platform, so our picks will be ideal partners for PCs such as a Dell XPS or a MacBook Pro. If you're an Apple owner we've also put together a complete guide to monitors specifically for MacBook Pro users: the best monitors for MacBook Pro.

These are 4K monitors for everyone: pro users who like to game when the deadlines are done, excellent all-rounders for home office or office use, budget bargains that deliver pin-sharp precision without costing a fortune, and super-accurate panels with excellent colour reproduction for creative illustrators, video editors and designers.

We think all of the models in our best 4K monitors guide are worth serious consideration, but if you're in a hurry and want the tl;dr version we reckon that the Philips Brilliance 328P6VUBREB is the best screen for most people. But it's not the only great 4K monitor around and this guide can help you find what is perfect for you.

If you're also looking to upgrade or create your home office then T3 has a range of buying guides that can help  you identify the right products for you. For example, our best mesh network guide can help you improve your connectivity, while our best office chairs guide can improve your comfort. For faster computing speeds, too, consider purchasing one of the best SSDs on the market.

Unsure which connector you should be using with your 4K monitor? Then check out T3's What’s best for your 4K monitor: USB-C, DisplayPort, Thunderbolt or HDMI? guide now.

The best 4K monitors you can buy today

Philips Brilliance 328P6VUBREB 4K monitorT3 Award

Want 4K and HDR support at a surprisingly affordable price? Then the Brilliance 328P6VUBREB is for you.

(Image credit: Philips)

1. Philips Brilliance 328P6VUBREB

The best 4K monitor for most people

Specifications
Screen size: 32-inch
Aspect ratio: 16:9
Resolution: 3,840 x 2,160
Brightness: 600 cd/m²
Response time: 4ms
Contrast ratio: 3,000:1
Color support: 1.07 billion
Reasons to buy
+Quality, captivating display+Great mix of 4K VA and HDR+Surprisingly affordable
Reasons to avoid
-Color accuracy could be a better

Finding a display that brings together 4K support and HDR (High Dynamic Range) at an affordable price point can be something of a holy grail, but every now and then a manufacturer finds that elusive sweet spot. Take the, ahem, brilliant Philips Brilliance 328P6VUBREB, a plucky display that sports an impressive HDR 600 rating and a 3,840 x 2,160 resolution as a great example.

This monitor's very vibrant display will do your graphic design, video editing and gaming pastime more than enough justice. It's also shockingly affordable, especially when you consider this is a 31.5-inch display with 4K and HDR support. Indeed, when you compare it to certain, similarly specced screens, it delivers the same performance for under half the price.

And, we feel it is because of this mixture of great hardware and modest price point, that makes the Philips Brilliance 328P6VUBREB the first monitor many users should consider when looking to upgrade.

To see how this monitor stacks up against our number one premium 4K monitor choice, be sure to check out T3's Philips Brilliance 328P6VUBREB vs Eizo Coloredge CG319X comparison feature.

Eizo ColorEdge CG319X 4K monitorT3 Approved Award badge

The Eizo ColorEdge CG319X is the money-no-object best 4K monitor in the world.

2. Eizo ColorEdge CG319X

The best premium 4K monitor

Specifications
Screen size: 31.1-inch
Resolution: 4096 x 2160
Refresh rate: 60Hz
Panel technology: IPS, Wide-Gamut LED
Inputs: DisplayPort x 2 (HDCP 1.3), HDMI x 2 (Deep Color, HDCP 2.2 / 1.4)
USB: USB 3.1 Gen 1: Type-B x 1, USB 3.1 Gen 1: Type-A x 3 (Battery Charging 10.5 W max. x1)
Reasons to buy
+Outstanding best-in-class colour accuracy+Gamma curve for editing HDR video+Incredible build quality+Non-glare panel with shading hood
Reasons to avoid
-Very, very expensive

Eizo displays are a familiar sight in professional photography and video production studios, due to the company's well-deserved reputation for outstanding consistent colour accuracy, with very little brightness deviation across the panel. As such they're an obvious choice for the top slot in our best 4K monitor roundup.

The 31-inch Eizo ColorEdge CG319X continues this tradition, delivering a 149 ppi DCI 4K resolution 4,096 x 2,160 panel (a slightly taller 4K standard used in digital video production) that is ideal for any sort of high-end photo and video editing work, as well as general usage and gaming.

The monitor is also equipped with a raft of high-end features, too, such as how it is  equipped with HLG (hybrid log-gamma) and the PQ (perceptual quantization) curve for displaying and editing HDR (high dynamic range) video content.

Meanwhile its wide-gamut LED backlight reproduces 98% of the DCI-P3 standard used in digital cinema and it also covers 99% of the Adobe RGB color space, too, meaning that images will always be displayed correctly.

All these features come together to produce a simply jaw-dropping image in applications across the board, which is only matched by the CG319X's asking price. At around £4,000 this serious piece of image editing hardware commands a seriously high premium, so it's really only for the professionals. However, if you can afford it and can justify the expense, then the Eizo ColorEdge CG319X is the best 4K monitor in the world.

To see how this pro-grade 4K monitor stacks up against a more everyday option, be sure to check out T3's Samsung M70A Smart Monitor vs Eizo ColorEdge CG319X comparison feature.

Samsung U28E590D 4K monitorT3 Approved Award badge

The Samsung U28E590D, an excellent budget choice for your next 4K monitor.

3. Samsung U28E590D

The best budget 4K monitor

Specifications
Screen size: 28-inch
Resolution: 3840 x 2160
Refresh rate: 60Hz
Inputs: 2 x HDMI, 1 x DisplayPort
Contrast ratio: 1000:1
Reasons to buy
+28-inch, 4K display+Excellent build quality+Incredibly low price point
Reasons to avoid
-No adjustable height

Not everyone has a huge amount to spend on a pixel-packed monitor, which is something that South Korean maker Samsung realises, with it 28-inch, 4K Samsung U28E590D ringing in for a fraction of some of the other monitors on the market.

Be under no illusion, though, Samsung is of course renowned for the quality of its display tech, and that is evidenced even here, with the U28E590D delivering a super-fast 1ms response time, 170-degree viewing angles, a 1000:1 contrast ratio, and rock solid connection options.

You don't get quite as many ports or quite as much size as you do on some other models, but the U28E590D cuts very few corners in hitting that fantastically low price point. Definitely worth a look for anyone shopping for a new 4K monitor on a budget.

To see how this top budget monitor stacks up against our best 4K monitor pick, be sure to scope out T3's Philips Brilliance 328P vs Samsung U28E590D comparison feature.

Philips Brilliance 329P1H 4K monitorT3 Awards 2021 winner badge

Want a 4K monitor for office work? Then the Philips Brilliance 329P1H is a top choice.

(Image credit: Philips)

4. Philips Brilliance 329P1H

A professional 4K monitor that puts work first

Specifications
Range: P Line
Size: 32-inch
Resoluion: 3840 x 2160 (4K UHD)
Panel type: IPS
Backlight type: W-LED
Aspect ratio: 16:9
Refresh rate: 60Hz
Brightness: 350 cd/m²
PPI: 140
Contrast ratio: 1000:1
Viewing angles: 178º (H)/178º (V)
Reasons to buy
+Integrated HD webcam+USB-C with 90W power+Highly adjustable stand
Reasons to avoid
-Lacks HDR

As we note in our full Philips Brilliance 329P1H review, this is a great 4K monitor for professionals, delivering a 32-inch Ultra HD IPS panel with integrated webcam, Windows Hello integration, and USB-C connectivity.

The screen itself is very accurate and it comes with highly adjustable stand, too, meaning it can be easily adjusted to all desks and preferences. That integrated webcam is no token afterthought, either, delivering Full HD 1080p video recording.

In terms of ports it delivers a brace of HDMI 2.0 and a Thunderbolt 1.4. Adjustability sits at 180mm of height adjustment, with the display gliding smoothly up and down, plus 90 degrees of pivot, 180 degrees of swivel and tilting from -5 to +25 degrees.

The Windows Hello integration is really nice as it allows for the automatic logging into Windows 10 using facial recognition, while the really weighty foot of the stand means it is really hard to tip or knock over the panel, too.

There's no HDR on this panel, and you don't get any gamer-focussed high refresh rates either, but if you want a 4K monitor for work, general use and streaming video content, the Philips Brilliance 329P1H is a great choice.

We're pleased to announce that the Philips Brilliance 329P1H has won T3's Best 4K Monitor award at the T3 Awards 2021, so if you're potentially interested in this monitor, we suggest reading up on why the judges thought it was so good.

BenQ SW271C 4K monitorT3 Approved Award badge

(Image credit: BenQ)

5. BenQ SW271C PhotoVue

The best affordable 4K monitor for photographers and video makers

Specifications
Screen size: 27 inches
Resolution: 3,840 x 2,160
Contrast ratio: 1,000:1
Brightness: 250cd/m2
Response time: 5ms
Reasons to buy
+Superb colour accuracy+Excellent calibration+USB-C
Reasons to avoid
-Old-fashioned design

For professional photographers and cinematographers, a monitor that’s “good enough” isn’t good enough: you need a level of accuracy that consumer-focused monitors don’t provide. That’s where this excellent BenQ comes in, with a wide colour gamut of 100% sRGB, 99% Adobe RGB and 90% of DCI-P3, comes in. 

BenQ’s photo-focused monitors are highly rated and this model introduces some useful upgrades including a new, improved anti-reflection coating, an updated version of the AQCOLOR technology to deliver more accurate colour and brightness, and Paper Color Sync to create a dedicated colour setting based on the printer mode, paper type and colour space.  For video makers, there is CalMAN support for LightSpace video calibration and HDR10 and HLG video input for post-production colour grading. Read the full BenQ SW271C review here. 

Dell UltraSharp U4320Q 4K monitorT3 Approved Award badge

(Image credit: Dell)

6. Dell UltraSharp U4320Q

The best 4K monitor with a big screen

Specifications
Screen size: 42.5 inches
Resolution: 4K 3840 x 2160
Refresh rate: 60Hz
Contrast ratio: 1000:1
Inputs : HDMI, DisplayPort, USB-C, USB 3.1
Reasons to buy
+Large, crisp display+Dell Display Manager gives lots of control+You view content from four PCs at once
Reasons to avoid
-Fiddly buttons-Hard to access ports

If you are on the hunt for a large 4K monitor to boost productivity and to display multiple computers or windows at once, the Dell UltraSharp U4320Q is definitely worth adding to your shortlist. Perfect for those who manage large spreadsheets or who need it for more creative tasks like video editing, it's crisp, bright and precise.

At 42.5inches, this isn't a monitor for the faint-hearted, you'll need a lot of desk space for it as it will need to be placed far back for you to make the most of it. Dell claims that it's the first monitor of this size that is fully height adjustable, you can also tilt and swivel it to suit your needs. 

What's more is that it has plenty of ways to connect, including USB-C which charges your laptop while displaying it.  Plus with the Dell Display Manager software, you can have full control over the layout and display settings without needing to fiddle around with the buttons on the monitor. 

BenQ EW3280U 4K monitorT3 Approved Award badge

(Image credit: BenQ)

7. BenQ EW3280U

A superb all-round 4K display with something for everyone

Specifications
Screen size: 32 inches
Viewing angle: 178°(H)/178°(V)
Resolution: 3840x2160
Contrast ratio: 1000:1
Refresh rate: 60Hz
Response time: 5ms
Reasons to buy
+Excellent picture and HDRi+Integrated speakers and a remote+Comes with USB-C connectivity
Reasons to avoid
-Not a particularly exciting design-Refresh rate tops out at 60Hz

We wouldn't say the BenQ EW3280U is the best monitor in any one particular area, but what it does do is offer something for creatives, gamers, casual users and professionals for a very reasonable price – it's perfect if you want your 4K display to wear a lot of different hats through the week.

The HDRi that is on board the BenQ EW3280U isn't technically an officially recognised HDR standard – rather it's BenQ's take on the same technology – but it does the job of keeping both light and dark areas of the screen in view. There's minimal ghosting, and the high resolution looks bright, vivid and sharp whether you're looking at a game or a movie.

And a word about the sound too: with speakers either side and on the back, you get audio that's a cut above what you might expect for something at this size and at this price. Coming from BenQ, you are of course also getting the reliability and the solid build quality that the manufacturer is known for.

Dell P2721Q 4K monitorT3 Approved Award badge

(Image credit: Dell)

8. Dell P2721Q

A superb 27-inch 4K monitor for productivity

Specifications
Screen size: 27 inches
Resolution: 3840 x 2160
Viewing angle: 178 degrees
Contrast ratio: 1,000:1
Refresh rate: 60Hz
Response time: 5ms
Reasons to buy
+Lots of connectivity options+Dell Display Manager to adjust the settings+You can tilt, swivel and rotate the screen
Reasons to avoid
-Not very easy to use the joystick on the back-No built-in speaker

For a modern, minimalist 4K monitor to suit any home office, the Dell P2721Q won't disappoint. With slim bezels, a small base and a professional aesthetic, it really is a good-looking piece of kit. 

The USB-C connectivity powers up to 65W and there's a handy cable management hole on the stand, so you can keep your workspace completely clutter-free. Admittedly, there's no speaker so you will need one of those hanging around your desk if you need one.

It has a bright IPS panel which you can easily customise through the Dell Display Manager Desktop software. Although it's not got the widest array of colours or the most pixels per inch, during testing it was perfect for tasks like word processing or web browsing. Creatives and gamers may not be convinced, however, if that's not what you intend to use it for anyway, that's not anything to worry about. Overall this is a fantastic 4K monitor that won't cost the earth.

LG 27UL850 4K monitorT3 Approved Award badge

(Image credit: LG)

9. LG 27UL850

A top-notch 4K monitor with HDR and USB-C

Specifications
Size: 27-inch
Resolution: 3840 x 2160 (4K, UHD)
Aspect ratio: 16:9
Brightness: 350cd/m2
Response time: 5ms
Contrast ratio: 1000:1
Viewing angles: 178/178 degrees
Ports: HDMI 2.0, USB Type-C, DisplayPort 1.4
Features: Radeon FreeSync
Refresh rate: 60Hz
Reasons to buy
+Accurate IPS display+HDR10+USB-C and HDMI 2.0
Reasons to avoid
-Poor speakers

As T3 noted in our LG 27UL850 review, this is a 4K monitor "that does a good job of just about everything", and that is why we recommend it in our best 4K monitors buying guide.

You get a 4K resolution, HDR10 support and HDMI 2.0, DisplayPort 1.4 and USB Type-C connectivity, meaning you're covered both on Windows and Mac.

The design is also very modern and minimalist, with an all-white back plate only interrupted by the recessed port array – for those who like a clean, modern look, the LG 27UL850 delivers. The only sub-optimal thing is that it doesn't have any cable routing built-in.

The refresh rate is 60Hz, so this isn't a monitor that excels at gaming, but it isn't really designed to be. The LG 27UL850 is definitely slanted more towards creative and office work, with a home office setting its natural environement.

It's price is also very firmly in the affordable ballpark, too, making it a strong all-rounder that is easy to recommend.

Samsung U32R592 4K monitorT3 Approved Award badge

If a curved 4K monitor is on your shopping list, then the Samsung U32R592 is a great option.

(Image credit: Samsung)

10. Samsung U32R592

The best curved 4K monitor on the market for most people

Specifications
Screen size: 32 inches
Screen curvature: 1,500R
Viewing angle: 178°(H)/178°(V)
Resolution: 3940x2160
Contrast ratio: 2500:1
Refresh rate: 60Hz
Response time: 4ms
Reasons to buy
+Beautiful curved screen+Impressive response time+Strong viewing angles
Reasons to avoid
-No G-Sync or FreeSync

If you're looking for a 4K monitor with a curved screen then the Samsung U32R592 is the best choice on the market for most people. That's because it delivers an elegant, minimal bezel screen that has a deep 1,500R curvature that really helps draw you into the panel.

It's got the tech chops, too, and is certainly not just a pretty face. A resolution of 3,940x2160 is partnered with an impressive response time of 4ms, a contrast ratio of 2500:1 and some top-rate viewing angles, too. The screen is also a just-right 32-inches in size, meaning it will fit into almost every setup.

It's not got the biggest port array, with only HDMI, mini DisplayPort and 3.5mm audio connections possible, but unless this will be an issue (and we're guessing the vast majority of people will connect via HDMI) then the Samsung U32R592 certainly will not disappoint.

HP Z27 4K monitorT3 Approved Award badge

The HP Z27 looks fantastic and excels at just about any task.

(Image credit: HP)

11. HP Z27

A superb and sleek best 4K monitor all-rounder

Specifications
Screen size: 27-inch
Aspect ratio: 16:9
Resolution: 3,840 x 2,160
Brightness: 350 cd/m²
Response time: 8ms
Contrast ratio: 1,300:1
Color support: sRGB and BT.709
Reasons to buy
+Looks the part+Excellent colour reproduction
Reasons to avoid
-No HDR

The HP Z27 not only looks fantastic – from the screen to the stand – it also comes with a USB-C port so you can charge your laptop (or your phone) while you're working. It's well worth a place in our round-up of best 4K monitors, particularly if you're looking for something sleek for the office.

With a resolution of 3,840 x 2,160 pixels, you've got plenty of room for those spreadsheets and webpages, but at a size that doesn't necessarily overwhelm a small or medium-sized desk. Obviously something bigger will be more immersive, but not everyone needs something huge set up in the attic or study.

Another point worth mentioning is the excellent colour accuracy on this model, making it one of the top choices out there for professionals working with images and video on a regular basis. Really though, whatever you're using it for, the HP Z27 is a winner.

Samsung M70A Smart Monitor 4K monitorT3 Approved Award badge

Want a 4K monitor for both work and play? Then check out the Samsung M70A Smart Monitor.

(Image credit: Samsung)

12. Samsung M70A Smart Monitor

A 4K monitor for both work and play

Specifications
Size: 32-inch
Screen type: LED
Resolution: 4K Ultra HD
HDR: HDR10
Refresh rate: 60Hz
Features: Smart TV, Bixby AI
Reasons to buy
+Smart TV apps and features+Wireless DeX and Office 365 support+Competitively priced
Reasons to avoid
-No height adjustment-Display quality could be better

The Samsung M70A Smart Monitor does what many of the panels in this best 4K monitors buying guide don't – it offers Smart TV functionality built in. That means that the screen can act as both a monitor and Ultra HD TV in one.

The Smart TV functionality comes courtesy of Tizen, which through its Tizen 5.5 Hub allows services like BBC iPlayer, Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime Video and NOW TV to be accessed directly.

There's built in WiFi, too, so you can hook the monitor up wirelessly to your home or office network, and there's plenty of ports for connecting it to a computer or other device, including two HDMI 2.0 ports a USB Type-C port and two USB 2.0 ports.

In terms of the actual screen itself, it delivers a 4K Ultra HD 3840 x 2160p resolution along with HDR10 compatibility, which means pin sharp visuals. The monitor has a 60Hz refresh rate. Audio is handled by two 10W speakers that use Dolby Digital Plus.

In terms of extra fixtures, the M70A comes with Samsung DeX, TapView and Bixby built in, with the latter Samsung's smart AI assistant.

Overall, this is a strong 4K monitor for those who also want their panel to act as a TV. It's not the best choice for gamers, as the 60Hz refresh rate isn't ideal, but for those who want to kit out their home office with a good panel for working and enjoying the odd show after work or a movie or two at the weekend, it's a great choice.

Acer Predator X27 4K monitorT3 Approved Award badge

For mature professionals who love to game in their spare time, then the Acer Predator X27 is a superb choice.

(Image credit: Acer)

13. Acer Predator X27

A brilliant 4K monitor for professionals who like to game

Specifications
Screen size: 27 inches
Resolution: 3,840 x 2,160
Aspect ratio: 16:9
Response time: 4ms
Brightness: 1,000 cd/m2 (peak)
Contrast ratio: 1,000:1
Reasons to buy
+HDR-level brightness+Low 4ms response time+Stand-out design
Reasons to avoid
-Very expensive

Sitting wonderfully in the gap between out and out gaming monitor and all-round premium 4K monitor powerhouse, the Acer Predator X27 delivers a fantastic system for both work and play.

Not only do you get a Ultra HD 4K screen here, but you get one that boasts a proper HDR peak brightness of 1,000 cd/m2, a response time of 4ms, and a refresh rate of 144Hz. That is an astounding combination of top monitor tech and it makes watching 4K HDR movies and playing today's best games a no-compromise pleasure.

The design is clean and modern, too, meaning that the monitor fits easily into an office, study or gaming room setup. Naturally, to get the most out of such a monitor then you will need a powerful PC or games console, but if that is you and you can stretch to the X27's undoubtedly premium price point, then it comes very highly recommended.

Acer ConceptD CP7271K 4K monitorT3 Approved Award badge

A 27 inch monitor with a hood to reduce glare, it's great for content creators. 

(Image credit: Acer)

14. Acer ConceptD CP7271K

Best for content creators who game in their spare time

Specifications
Screen size: 27 inch
Resolution: 3840 x 2160 UHD
Aspect ratio : 16:9
Response time: 4ms
Contrast ratio: 1,000:1
Reasons to buy
+Incredibly vivid colours+1,000 nits peak brightness+4K UHD resolution
Reasons to avoid
-No USB-C connectivity-You can’t rotate the screen-The in-built speakers sound hollow

For those who spend the day creating content and spend the night playing videogames, the Acer ConceptD CP7271K 4K monitor will satisfy every need. 

With high-end specs to match the eye-watering price, the Acer ConceptD CP7271K boasts a 144Hz refresh rate, IPS display, 1,000 nits of brightness, wide colour gamut and Nvidia G-Sync Ultimate. The design favours a more aesthetic approach than other monitors on this list, with the base having a wooden effect paired with a matte-silver stand. You can decide for yourself if it’s your style or not. 

In use, it proved to have some incredibly vivid, accurate colours while the 4K resolution gave it absolute clarity. It seemed to be better for content creation rather than video games, despite having some serious gaming features, but for those who like to do both, its a good choice. 

BenQ EW2780U 4K monitorT3 Approved Award badge

A good value 4K monitor from BenQ that suits entertainment and general use.

(Image credit: BenQ)

15. BenQ 27-inch EW2780U

One of the best affordable 4K monitors on the market

Specifications
Screen size: 27-inch
Resolution: 3,840 x 2,160
Refresh rate: 60Hz
Panel technology: IPS
Inputs: HDMI x 2, DisplayPort x 1
Reasons to buy
+Intelligent take on HDR+Bright, vibrant 4K performance
Reasons to avoid
-Stand only allows you to tilt-Not so well suited to gaming

The BenQ EW2780U comes with a special proprietary technology branded HDRi – the "i" is for "intelligent", we think – that apparently uses both the content on screen and the ambient lighting to give you a better HDR experience, with no loss of detail in either the darkest or lightest parts of the picture.

In our experience it's better than standard HDR in some cases but not in others, but there's not a huge amount in it (and you can at least turn it off if you don't like it). There are actually two HDRi modes, one for games and one for entertainment, so that's plenty of room to experiment.

Otherwise this is another top quality monitor from BenQ, as you would expect from a manufacturer that's been in the business for years now. You'll have no problems at all with the build quality, initial setup and on-screen controls, and that's before you get to the spec of the monitor.

As well as 27 inches of space, you get a 4K resolution and a response time of 5ms. A good number of ports are included for a monitor this size as well, and the price (typically well under £500) is definitely on the reasonable side.

Having fired up the BenQ EW2780U for a variety of movies as well as some everyday computer work, we can confirm it's a sharp, bright monitor that shows off content very well – whether that's a 4K stream from Netflix or an Excel spreadsheet – and definitely worth a place on your best 4K monitor shortlist.

LG 27UK650-W 4K monitorT3 Approved Award badge

Get the LG 27UK650-W on your best 4K monitors shortlist if you want to mix style and substance.

(Image credit: LG)

16. LG 27UK650-W

Excels at everything from gaming to office work

Specifications
Screen size: 27-inch
Aspect ratio: 16:9
Resolution: 3,840 x 2,160
Brightness: 350 cd/m²
Response time: 5ms
Contrast ratio: 1,000:1
Color support: 99 percent sRGB
Reasons to buy
+Great specs for the price+Vibrant and crisp colours
Reasons to avoid
-Limited HDR

You're looking at a pixel resolution of 3,840 x 2,160, a screen size of 27 inches and a refresh rate of 60Hz with the LG 27UK650-W, and that puts it firmly in the all-purpose 4K monitor category – it's a screen that can be used for just about anything you can use a display for, and it's going to pass any test you give it with flying colours.

Up close and in use the LG 27UK650-W panel is bright and vibrant, with superb colour reproduction and clarity. We'd be happy using this monitor for gaming, or for office work, or both, and there's support here for AMD Freesync variable refresh rate technology too, which is going to appeal to gamers.

In terms of looks, the monitor manages to be sleek and unfussy, and it's the sort of display design that can fit in just about everywhere. No matter what your desk setup or what you plan to do with it, the LG 27UK650-W is a 4K monitor that'll impress you.

And, do you know who else it impressed? Not only the entire T3 Awards 2020 judging panel, with the LG27UK650-W winning the highly desirable Best 4K Monitor award. That shows you just what a quality monitor it really is.

Dell UltraSharp U2718Q 4K monitorT3 Approved Award badge

Another excellent choice for the best 4K monitor around at the moment is the Dell UltraSharp U2718Q.

(Image credit: Dell)

17. Dell UltraSharp U2718Q

Dell impresses once again with this 4K beauty

Specifications
Screen size: 27-inch
Aspect ratio: 16:9
Resolution: 3,840 x 2,160
Brightness: 350 cd/m²
Response time: 5ms
Contrast ratio: 1,300:1
Color support: 1.07 billion
Reasons to buy
+Attractive, rotating design+Impressive colours and contrast
Reasons to avoid
-Limited HDR

There's no doubt that Dell knows what it's doing when it comes to electronics, and the UltraSharp U2718Q confirms that: this understated, high-quality 4K monitor impresses in just about every category, though it's a bit more suited to the demands of the professional than the gamer.

It certainly looks the part – check out those ultra-thin bezels and the minimal aesthetic of the stand. Colour accuracy and port selection is good too, with two HDMI slots, a DisplayPort socket and a mini DisplayPort socket, and two USB 3.0 ports as well. Despite all this potential cabling, everything is kept neat and tidy around the back.

The best part of the Dell UltraSharp U2718Q is the picture that you get, which is crisp and clear and vivid – it even makes spreadsheet work enjoyable. The screen can rotate around 90 degrees at an angle as well, if you need a more unconventional monitor setup.

Samsung 32" High Resolution Space 4K monitorT3 Approved Award badge

Samsung's 4K space monitor is a unique proposition and, quite comfortably, one of the best 4K monitors on the market.

18. Samsung 32-inch High Resolution Space Monitor

The best 4K monitor for space-saving minimalism

Specifications
Screen size: 32-inch
Resolution: 3,840 x 2,160
Refresh rate: 60Hz
Panel technology: VA
Inputs: Mini DisplayPort x 1, HDMI x 1
Reasons to buy
+Clever clamp stand+3-sided bezeless display+Very adjustable+Strong cable management
Reasons to avoid
-No USB-C connectivity

If you're looking for a quality 4K panel that also specialises in maximising desk space then this cleverly engineered Space Monitor from Samsung should be right at the top of your shopping list.

The magic-maker is the monitor's clamp system, which locks the monitor's flat stand to the rear of a desk very firmly, with a simply twist to lock system fixing it firmly in place. The monitor, which is completely bezeless on three sides, simply then slots into the stand, where it can then be secured with a few screws. A snap-on backplate then hides this.

The Space Monitor can then sit flush to the back of the desk, allowing it sit right up against walls, as even the few cables that extend down from its ports can be cleverly routed through cable channels carved into the back of the stand. The stand is hinged at the base, too, and allows it to be brought forward and downward at any angle (zero-level HAS) until the base of the monitor sits flush with the table.

Panel-wise, Samsung delivers a 3,840 x 2,160 resolution monitor with a 16:9 aspect ratio, typical brightness of 250 cd/m2 and a 2500:1 contrast ratio. Response time sits at 4ms (GTG), refresh rate at 60 Hz, and horizontal and vertical viewing angles at  178°. In other words, a quality and versatile 4K screen.

Are there other monitors in available that offer similar viewing experiences? Absolutely. But there aren't any that deliver such a stunning, space-saving design. One of 2021's strongest 4K monitor choices.

Eizo ColorEdge CG318-4K 4K monitorT3 Approved Award badge

If you can't stretch to the Eizo ColorEdge CG318-4K, then the Dell UltraSharp UP3216Q is a great, premium alternative.

19. Dell UltraSharp UP3216Q

An incredibly strong 4K monitor that delivers across the board

Specifications
Screen size: 31.5-inch
Resolution: 3840 x 2160
Refresh rate: 60Hz
Panel technology: IPS
Inputs: 1 x DisplayPort, 1 x Mini DisplayPort, 1 x HDMI
USB: 4 x USB 3.0
Reasons to buy
+Great colour accuracy+10-bit IPS panel with 16-bit look-up table
Reasons to avoid
-Not the most adjustable stand

Dell's latest high-end 31.5-inch 4K display packs in a lot of professional-grade features for superb colour accuracy. It has a specification that almost rivals Eizo's monster CG318-4K (see above), as it hits 99% Adobe RGB coverage and 87% DCI-P3, delivering great picture quality.

While it costs a lot less than Eizo's offering, it's still a pricey prospect, though, which is to be expected of a large high-end 4K display in 2021. Nevertheless, if you want a premium 4K monitor but can't stretch to the Eizo, it's definitely worth a look.

BenQ PD3200U 4K monitorT3 Approved Award badge

It costs, but the BenQ PD3200U is one of the best 4K monitors for professionals.

20. BenQ PD3200U

One of the best 4K monitors for professionals

Specifications
Screen size: 32 inches
Resolution: 3840 x 2160
Response time: 4ms
Colour support: 1.07 billion
Contrast ratio: 20,000,000:1
Reasons to buy
+Massive contrast range+Excellent response time
Reasons to avoid
-Plain design

Digital designers will be in hardware heaven with the BenQ PD3200U thanks to this 4K monitor being calibrated for super colour accuracy, contrast and crisp image quality. The screen is also a bit of a whopper at 32 inches, leaving users plenty of real estate to play with.

As the screen is really designed for professionals, it also comes with a darkroom, CAD/CAM, and animation mode, keyboard video mouse and embedded SD/MMC card reader with support for SD/SDHC/SDXC/MMC.

It certainly costs a pretty penny, and isn't much of a looker, but when its base functionality and features are so good, that doesn't matter so much if you're in the market for a top 4K monitor at the moment.

EIZO EV2795-BK FlexScan 4K monitorT3 Approved Award badge

(Image credit: EIZO)

21. EIZO EV2795-BK FlexScan

The perfect monitor for the modern workstation

Specifications
Screen Size: 27-inch
Resolution: 2560 x 1440
Refresh Rate: 60Hz
Panel Technology: IPS
Inputs: DisplayPort (HDCP 1.3), HDMI (HDCP 1.4), USB-C (70W
Reasons to buy
+Seamless daisy-chaining via USB-C+Ergonomic +Homeworking specialist
Reasons to avoid
-Weak 1W speakers -No 4K resolution-Refresh rate could be higher

First, the EIZO EV2795-BK FlexScan isn’t a 4K monitor, but after some consideration, we think it deserves a spot with the best 4K monitors. Why? It's one of the most robust screens currently available on the market, and we want you to consider it before you jump headfirst into a 4K purchase you may just not need!

What this monitor offers instead of 4K is a multi-device docking juggernaut: a 70-watt power supply keeps your laptop juiced up via USB-C, seamlessly daisy-chaining multiple monitors to transform your home setup. The EIZO EV2795-BK isn't short of ports, either: three USB-A ports are more than enough for the accessories you'll need to connect, and Eizo’s ergonomic stand is a pleasure to adjust, tilt, and pivot to accommodate a good mix of viewing angles.

The 2560 x 1440 resolution screen is perfect for the home office, which is the 27-inch EV2795-BK’s natural habitat, delivering highly accurate color reproduction, versatility, and bags of tricks for both the average home office user and those who work with graphics and video. The EIZO FlexScan EV2795-BK’s sRGB mode impressively levels the color field, removing the need to compress the color gamut that can warp colors and display them incorrectly. 

It's expensive, sure, but the accelerated shift towards home working makes the EIZO EV2795-BK FlexScan worth every single dime, not least because it has merit as a machine in its own right, but because it delivers way beyond a desk monitor. If you're in the market for a new home office monitor, then please look no further than the EIZO EV2795-BK FlexScan. 

Dell P2721Q 4k monitorT3 Approved Award badge

(Image credit: Dell)

22. Dell P2721Q

A superb choice for lightweight laptop users

Specifications
Screen size: 27 inches
Resolution: 3,840 x 2,160
Refresh rate: 24-86Hz
Panel technology: IPS
Connectivity: HDMI, DisplayPort, USB 3.2 Gen 1 Upstream/65W power, 2 x USB 2.0 downstream, 2 x USB 3.2 Gen 1 downstream
Reasons to buy
+USB 3 hub with power delivery+Excellent connection options+Good angles and colour reproduction
Reasons to avoid
-Limited colour coverage-No built-in speaker

If you have a slim, modern laptop you probably don’t have many ports to connect things to – and that means this Dell 4K monitor could be the perfect solution. It has a built in USB 3.2 Gen 1 hub with 65W power delivery, 2 downstream USB 3 ports and 2 USB 2 ones, enabling you to connect your laptop via a single cable and access multiple accessories without lots of hassle or an additional hub. It has an always on mode so you can continue to charge connected devices even when the display is off.

The IPS panel has excellent viewing angles and the monitor can be tilted, swivelled and height-adjusted by a maximum of 5.9 inches (150mm), and it has Dell’s ComfortView to reduce blue light. If you’re feeling flush the ultra-thin bezel lends itself well to a twin-display setup, and while it doesn’t include its own speakers it’s designed alongside an optional soundbar, the Dell Slim Soundbar. 

Huawei MateView 4K monitorT3 Approved badge

Elegant and minimalist are the best ways to describe the Huawei MateView 

(Image credit: Huawei)

23. Huawei MateView

The best 4K monitor for an office with modern decor

Specifications
Screen size: 28.2inches
Resolution: 3840 x 2560
Refresh rate: 60Hz
Inputs: 1 x USB-C, 2 x USB-A 3.0, 1 x HDMI 2.0, 1 x MiniDP, 3.5 mm headset and microphone
Contrast ratio: 1,200:1
Reasons to buy
+Large screen with a 3:2 aspect ratio+Plenty of ways to connect+Smart Bar touch controls 
Reasons to avoid
-It doesn't swivel or rotate-Not able to wirelessly project in 4K-Limited display settings

If you’re keen to make sure your office fulfils a modern, minimalist aesthetic then the Huawei MateView 4K monitor will fit right in. 

A 28.2inch screen is paired with some seriously clever features like wireless projection from your Windows PC or Huawei smartphone, as well as touch controls using the Smart Bar on the underside of the frame. You’ll also get plenty of choices when it comes to wired connectivity, including a USB-C port with 65W charging. 

There are two speakers and dual microphones built-in, and you can plug your mouse and keyboard directly into it as well - it’s well set up for productivity. 

One downside is that you don’t get loads of display settings to play around with but creators will love its depth of colour and accuracy, while those using it for more writing-based tasks will enjoy the 3:2 aspect ratio. The whole thing feels sleek and easy to use. 

How to choose the best 4K monitor for you

It's really important to do your research when choosing the best 4K monitor for you. From refresh rates to adaptive-sync capabilities, be sure you know exactly what these features are and whether they'll influence your decision before you make it. A little research goes a long way when investing in new tech.

To this end, below our list of top 4K monitors we've included some advice that should help you narrow down and determine what UHD screens you should be looking for, and ensure you land a panel that you'll be impressed with.

The natural successor to 1080p screens and televisions is of course 4K, which is also marketed as Ultra HD (UHD). There are four times as many pixels, which means four times as much detail.

Movies look good at 1080p, but in 4K the picture really gets to that breathtaking level – and as long as your PC can handle the processing demands, playing games on a 4K display is an amazing experience, too.

When choosing a monitor, you need to take into consideration factors such as colour gamut and response time, the latter being a reflection on how good the panel will be for gaming (the faster the better). 

You also – naturally – need to work out which panel size you need. 27-inch displays are the sweet spot for us, although you can get some cracking deals on larger displays, too. With all that in mind, here's our roundup of the best 4K monitors currently on the market in 2021.

Who makes the best 4K monitors?

There are loads of quality 4K monitor makers in business today producing panels at both the budget and premium ends of the market. Naturally, certain manufacturers tend to lean toward different pricing brackets, but almost all will offer something for most usage cases.

The best 4K monitor makers, from T3's experience of reviewing and ranking 4K monitors are:

Samsung
Dell
Philips
Acer
HP
BenQ
LG

These makers have shown T3 over the years that with stylish panels, excellent build quality and advanced panel tech and features, in almost all circumstances when they introduce a new Ultra HD monitor then it's going to be a good one.

A large 4K monitor shown on a white background

(Image credit: Philips)

4K monitor or 4K TV: which should you buy?

Now that's a very good question. First off you really need to decide what you're buying a screen for. If it's work or creative/graphic design tasks only then we'd say a 4K monitor is absolutely the way you should go. You've got a wide range of affordable UHD panels to choose from which, while they may not have fancy features, will deliver you the resolution and color accuracy you require.

If you're looking for a panel that can also be used for good amounts of entertainment usage, though, such as streaming 4K, HDR movies off Netflix or Disney Plus, and/or gaming, then while a 4K monitor can be a good choice, you may actually be better off plumping for a 4K TV with gaming/PC functionality.

You only have to take one look, for example, at the best gaming TVs to see that today's best offerings come with loads of gaming-focussed features like 120Hz refresh rates, low response times and HDR, while the best 4K TVs deliver color accuracy and vibrancy that is off the chart.

Basically, the line between 4K monitor and 4K TV has blurred over the past 2-3 years, which is why you now find products on the market like the Samsung M70A Smart Monitor (included in our list above) that look to deliver both monitor and TV functionality in one product.

How we test the best 4K monitors

Testing the best 4K monitors is a multiple-stage process. Firstly we determine just how easy the monitor is to set up and then calibrate. If a monitor has loads of fiddly screws, a heavy and awkward stand or an awkward assemble process then we'll find out.

Next, we power the monitor up and explore its screen settings and on-board menu system. Here we're seeing what sorts of picture modes are available, as well as just what customisation options it delivers in terms of image tweaking. We're also judging just how easy it is to access and navigate these menus.

Next we focus on the monitor's image quality across a variety of applications, ranging from web browsing and document work, to photo editing in Photoshop and watching movies and TV shows on streaming services like Netflix, and on to gaming. We're looking out for things like colour accuracy, color space, HDR performance, brightness, refresh rate, response times and more besides.

We then move on to judging the panel's connectivity options, as well as any other features or accessories it may come with. Following that we finally then compare it rival monitors that offer similar performance or retail in a similar price range.

Finally, we then bestow a star score on the 4K monitor (our of 5 star, with 1 star being the worst score and 5 stars being the best) and, if the monitor has scored highly, then consider it for inclusion in our best 4K monitors buying guides.

Robert Jones
Robert Jones

Deputy Editor for T3.com, Rob has been writing about computing, gaming, mobile, home entertainment technology and more for over 15 years. You can find Rob's work in magazines, bookazines and online, as well as on podcasts and videos, too. Outside of his work Rob is passionate about motorbikes, skiing/snowboarding and team sports, with football and cricket two favourites. Feel free to contact him with any related products, events, and announcements.