Having one of the best monitors for your Mac mini is essential if you own one of these affordable, compact Apple computers – or if you're planning to buy one. All of our picks are just like the computer itself, high-quality machines with a premium finish that offer excellent value for money.
Given the recent news around the cost of living, we are all having to think about ways to save money on our purchases, which is why devices like the Mac mini have become an even more convincing option. The Mac mini is Apple’s most affordable computer, and since it moved to Apple silicon it’s become even better value for money. But with an Apple M1 processor inside, it’s still blisteringly fast and exceptionally powerful.
But to keep the price down, Apple doesn’t give you a keyboard or a mouse, and it doesn’t include a screen either. And that’s where this guide comes in. Whether you want one of the best 4K monitors or one of the best curved monitors, we’ve found the best Mac mini monitors for every kind of user.
The latest Mac mini comes with twin Thunderbolt / USB-C ports as well as an HDMI 2.0 port, which gives you lots of options for displays. In fact, it means that many of the best monitors for MacBook Pro laptops will be a good choice for your Mac mini as well. After all, at heart, it’s largely the same computer in a different form. But whereas a USB-C connection is a major priority in monitors for MacBook Pro, you can connect to the Mac mini easily in more traditional ways, opening up some great budget options.
The best monitor for Mac mini 2023
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And if you just want the top picks, in brief, we think the best monitor for the Mac mini for most people is the BenQ PD2700U: it's a great size for working on, it brings with it a sharp and clear resolution, and the colour reproduction is top notch too.
As for the best monitor for the Mac mini for creatives, that's the Asus ProArt PA278CV. It's the same size (27 inches) as the BenQ, but it offers better colour breadth and accuracy, while dropping down the resolution a notch. It also has USB-C connectivity, which is a plus.
If you're trying to save some money, the best budget monitor for the Mac mini in our mind is the Viewsonic VP2458. As well as the affordable price which earns it the best budget label, there are plenty of connectivity options plus a vibrant picture.
A 27-inch, 4K monitor with an IPS panel for an affordable price? You bet. Although it's targeted at designers – there are dedicated modes for computer aided design (CAD) apps – the BenQ is an excellent option for every kind of user.
It has wide viewing angles, excellent colour reproduction, a fast response time, HDR10 (though Macs don't current support this) and DualView, which can show apps in two different modes on a single display.
This gives you a high-quality screen with pin-sharp images that will last you for years. It's a shame there's no USB-C connectivity, but your Mac mini will connect to it just fine using its other ports.
It's hard to fault the ProArt PA278CV: for a reasonable price, you're getting a QHD display on a 27-inch IPS with good viewing angles, perfect sRGB colour reproduction and good Adobe RGB coverage too. It's a very low price for a large, video- and photo-friendly display, and we think it's particularly well suited to content creators and editors who need a high quality, accurate display but don't want to spend a fortune.
The downsides? The contrast ratio isn't brilliant and there's no HDR support, so this isn't one for kicking back with your favourite gloomy movies. But it's an excellent all-rounder for anyone who does photos, videos or design, with wide viewing angles, good colour reproduction and the ability to act as a USB hub to make your Mac talk to more devices.
There's also adaptive sync for gaming, if you might want to connect a gaming machine – although we're talking about Mac mini usage here. If this model doesn't quite grab you, there are others in the Asus ProArt range.
ViewSonic has been making good quality monitors since forever, and its models are a particularly good choice when you're buying on a budget. This is a lot of monitor for your money, with a good quality Full HD display and surprisingly strong colour reproduction.
The main weakness of this monitor is that it isn't as bright as its more expensive rivals, which shouldn't be a deal-breaker for everyday work as long as you don't have to deal with lots reflections at your desk, but might mean it's less than ideal for video editing or photo editing.
That said, for the vast majority of tasks this is a really good monitor for a really good price – certainly for most web and document work, it's perfect. You'll have no issues hooking your Mac mini up to it and it's versatile to adapt to whatever's needed.
Everything you would expect from a device made by HP is true of the HP Z27k G3: it's well built, it has a premium feel, it's reliable, and it comes with some well thought out extra features. In this case those extra features include a USB hub made up of four USB Type-A 3.2 Gen 1 ports.
As for the screen itself, the 27-inch 4K panel is a dream to use and gets everything from movies to spreadsheets looking great. Whatever you're up to on your Mac mini it will shine on the HP Z27k G3, and with HDMI, DisplayPort and USB-C around the back you even get a choice of ways to connect it up.
That flexibility extends to the positioning of the monitor as well, because it can rotate, swivel and tilt – you can even use it in portrait mode if you want, and the height is adjustable too. An all-round impressive package, and one that's not going to cost you too much.
If you're looking for a Mac mini display that's as high quality as the display in a MacBook Pro, this MSI is a strong contender. It's only marginally less bright than Apple's displays: 450 nits to the MBP's 500. When connected to an HDR source, it can even hit 600 nits, which is great for movies and gaming.
The selling point here is the high-resolution ultrawide display, which is absolutely brilliant for pro apps and for productivity generally: it's as close you can get to a twin-monitor setup without having to buy two monitors.
There's full control over tilt, pivot, height and swivel, and you can use it as a USB hub too. Check out our MSI Prestige PS341WU vs BenQ EX3501R guide for a closer comparison of this with the other ultrawide monitor recommended below.
Dell's monitors won't make you gasp with their outré designs: these are business displays and focus on picture quality and performance rather than gimmicks or unusual designs. However, for our money that's what matters most.
The panel here is an excellent 4K IPS display which delivers a pin-sharp picture and superb colour reproduction, and we can attest that it's a really great canvas for apps such as Logic Pro X or anything else where you need to fit lots of things on screen at once.
The Dell also doubles as a USB hub, enabling you to connect multiple peripherals if you connect it via USB-C, and you can pivot and tilt the display to suit the project or app you're working in. If you need the connectivity that the BenQ at the top doesn't offer, this is absolutely the option to get.
Wide, curved monitors are all the rage among gamers right now, but what's ideal for racers and shooters turns out to be pretty great for reading and spreadsheets too: ultrawide monitors are great for working in split-screen view, or for having your main document open on one side and all your messaging apps, Slacks and similar on the other.
The aspect ratio here is 21:9 compared to the more common 16:9 so it's much wider than you may be used to; we love it, even if it may be a little too wide for some users. You also get the reassurance that the BenQ brand gives, that this is a well-built monitor that's going to last.
Admittedly the sheer size and the curvature of this screen isn't going to appeal to everyone but it's fair to say that some people will love it – and whatever you load up on your Mac mini is going to look stunning.
If you're looking for something simple to set up, straightforward to use, with useful connectivity, reasonably compact, and not too draining on your bank account, this Philips is an excellent option.
It's not up there with the big hitters in this guide for image quality and brightness – in this company, Full HD resolution and 250 nits of brightness put it behind the best displays here – but you're getting a good quality IPS panel with strong colours, plenty of connectivity, and even a built-in webcam that pops out of the top that's pretty good quality.
If your idea for buying a monitor is that you want something just as space-saving as the Mac mini, it's ideal – and has the full range of ergonomic adjustments, still. Check out our full Philips 243B1JH review here.
The Samsung Odyssey Neo G9 is one of the best gaming monitors ever made, and that wider-than-wide display offers an astonishing amount of room for your apps. The downside to a massive screen is that it needs a massive amount of space too, and the price tag is hardly tiny either.
But you do get a lot of display for your money, and not just in terms of dimensions. It delivers levels of brightness to rival a high-end TV, has a 1ms response rate and looks spectacular no matter what you throw at it: movies, games, photos… they're all rendered in spectacular fashion.
The downsides are that you'll need an M1 Mac mini to power its resolution or a recent Intel-powered Mac mini running Big Sur or later. And the lack of support for HDR or very high refresh rates in Macs means you're not making the most of everything this screen can do unless you're also connecting a gaming device of some kind. And it's important to note that while this is a high resolution display, it isn't a hugely dense display: it's 108ppi compared to around 163ppi for a 27-inch 4K monitor.
Finally – in a last but not least kind of way – what about Apple's very own Studio Display? This is undoubtedly a premium-level piece of kit and perfectly suited to the Mac mini as well, though it may be a bit on the expensive side for many.
If you can afford it, you can't argue with the aesthetics of this device, which boasts a 5K resolution Retina Display that really does have to be seen to be believed. There are downsides, including the 60Hz refresh rate limit, but unless you're a serious gamer then that's not going to bother you too much.
There's been a lot of talk that this plus a Mac mini is actually Apple's replacement for the now discontinued 27-inch iMac, and that makes a lot of sense. It even comes with its own webcam and a sensational speaker system too.
How to choose the best monitor for your Mac mini
When you’re buying a monitor for your Mac mini, the first consideration is of course price: there’s no point looking at superwide monitors if you only have a few hundred pounds to spend. But price isn’t the only consideration. The most important thing is the monitor’s suitability for what you’re actually going to use it for.
As much as we love 4K, unless you’re buying a really big display you probably don’t need it for everyday computing: our 4K monitor isn’t running at full resolution because it makes everything so small we can barely see it.
That said, if you’re doing creative work such as image editing or watching and editing high resolution video, the higher the resolution the more detail you’ll see. HDR becomes important here too: you don’t need it if you’re doing spreadsheets in Numbers, but it makes gaming and movies even more immersive.
If you’re thinking about using your Mac mini with a lot of accessories, its lack of ports might be an issue. Some of the monitors here solve that problem by including USB hubs, so when you connect the monitor to one of your Mac mini’s USB-C ports you can then connect other devices to the ports on your monitor.
Alternatively, you could keep both of your USB-C ports free by using the HDMI 2.0 output on your Mac instead – but if you’re a gamer or film fan, it’s important to know that the HDMI 2.0 output doesn’t support FreeSync or Dolby Vision.
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