Best 4K monitors 2021: top Ultra HD displays

Get the best 4K monitor for both work and play, with all budgets catered to

Best 4K monitors 2021
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(Image credit: HP)

Welcome to T3's best 4K monitor guide for 2021. Here we've rounded up the absolute best 4K monitors on the market today, explained why they are so good, and also hunted for the cheapest prices available on them, too.

There are 4K monitors in this buying guide at the budget, mid-range and premium end of the market as well, meaning that no matter what the size of your 4K screen budget, we're confident there's a quality panel in here that will suit you.

We've also got monitors ideal for Apple Mac users (though you can also check out our specific guide to the best monitors for MacBook Pro), monitors for professionals who like to game in their spare time, all-around monitors that deliver across the board, bargain beauty monitors that deliver the basics brilliantly, and super-accurate panels perfect for creatives who spend plenty of time illustrating as well as editing images and videos.

Simply put, this is a great resource for anyone looking for a great 4K monitor. If you would prefer not to browse the selection on offer, though, and would prefer just one top recommendation to go and buy right now, then we currently consider the HP Z27 as the screen to ring up.

If you're also looking to upgrade your computer, check out our best laptops guide. If you're building a gaming set up, take a look at our best gaming keyboards and best gaming mouse. And anyone clocking up serious screen-time will appreciate a decent seat, and our best gaming chairs provide the comfort and support you need.

There are plenty of other fantastic 4K monitors in this guide, though, so read on for even more choices and for buying advice.

The best 4K monitors you can buy today

best 4K monitor 2021

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

(Image credit: HP)

1. HP Z27

A superb and sleek best 4K monitor all-arounder

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 color reproduction

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 the 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 color accuracy on this model, making it one of the top choices out there for professionals working with images and videos on a regular basis. Really though, whatever you're using it for, the HP Z27 is a winner.

Best 4K monitor 2021 Eizo ColorEdge CG319X

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 color accuracy+Gamma curve for editing HDR video+Incredible build quality+Non-glare panel with shading hood

Eizo displays are a familiar sight in professional photography and video production studios, due to the company's well-deserved reputation for outstanding consistent color 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. 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.

best 4k monitor 2021 Samsung U28E590D

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

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

Make no mistake, 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.

best 4K monitors 2021 BenQ EW3280U

(Image credit: BenQ)

4. BenQ EW3280U

A superb all-around 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

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 recognized 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 on 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.

Best 4K monitor 2021 Samsung U32R592 4K monitor

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

(Image credit: Samsung)

5. 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

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.

best 4k monitors 2021 Acer Predator X27

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

(Image credit: Acer)

6. 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

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

Not only do you get an Ultra HD 4K screen here, but you get one that boasts an 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 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.

best 4K monitor 2021 Philips Momentum 436M6VBPAB

With 43 inches of real estate to play with, the Philips Momentum has space to spare.

7. Philips Momentum 436M6VBPAB

A do-it-all 4K monitor of simply epic proportions

Specifications
Screen size: 43-inch
Resolution: 3,840 x 2,160
Refresh rate: 60Hz
Panel technology: MVA
Inputs: DisplayPort 1.4 x 1, mini DisplayPort 1.4 x 1, HDMI 2.0 x 1, USB-C (DP Alt mode), USB 3.0 x 2 (w w/fast charging)
Reasons to buy
+Huge 43-inch 4K panel+DisplayHDR 1000 tech+Ambiglow lighting+Low input lag of 4 ms

There's so much to love about the Philips Momentum 436M6VBPAB that it is difficult to know where to start. It's a simply massive panel, measuring in at a TV-sized 43 inches, which means you're never strapped for space. Thanks to its 4K, DisplayHDR 1000 panel technology, too, the picture quality it delivers is also impressive, with up to 1000 nits of peak brightness accessible.

Elsewhere, the 3,840 x 2,160 resolution screen also comes with a gamer-focused 4 ms response time and Adaptive-Sync technology, which means input lag is moot and high-speed gaming sessions a super smooth, click-and-hope free experience. Naturally, thanks to the screen's Quantum Dot color tech, too, images and videos are presented naturally and with rich, vivid colors.

Lastly, a wide selection of connection options, including DisplayPort and miniDisplayPort, HDMI and USB-C, means that hooking the monitor up is never an issue either, and its cost makes it very approachable to most shoppers as well.

The picture quality isn't absolutely the best-in-class in this guide, however, just like everything else about it, it is good and complements a strong all-around 4K monitor package that excels in delivering huge screen space.

best 4K monitors 2021 BenQ EW2780U

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

(Image credit: BenQ)

8. 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

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 the 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 – so you can conceivably use this display for gaming as well as for everything else. A good number of ports are included for a monitor this size as well, and the price 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.

best 4K monitors 2021 LG 27UK650-WT3 Awards 2020

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

(Image credit: LG)

9. 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 colors

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 colors.

Up close and in use the LG 27UK650-W panel is bright and vibrant, with superb color 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? 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 best 4K monitors 2020

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

(Image credit: Dell)

10. 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 colors and contrast

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. Color accuracy and port selection are 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 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 Monitor 4K

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

11. 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

If you're looking for a quality 4K panel that also specializes in maximizing 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 simple twist to lock system fixing it firmly in place. The monitor, which is completely bezel-less on three sides, then simply 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 to 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 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.

Best 4K monitor Ultra HD UHD displays

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

12. 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 color accuracy+10-bit IPS panel with 16-bit look-up table

Dell's latest high-end 31.5-inch 4K display packs in a lot of professional-grade features for superb color 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.

Best 4K monitor Ultra HD UHD displays

A great, alternative 4K monitor for gaming.

13. Acer Predator XB281HK

A well-priced, gamer-focussed 4K display with Nvidia G-Sync

Specifications
Screen size: 28-inch
Resolution: 3840 x 2160
Refresh rate: 60Hz
Panel technology: TN
Inputs: 1 x DisplayPort
USB: 4 x USB 3.0
Reasons to buy
+G-Sync up to 60Hz+1ms response time+Strong connection options

Like the Asus ROG Swift PG27AQ, Acer's Predator XB281HK is a 4K monitor with G-Sync technology ensuring no tearing or stuttering in games up to 60Hz.

It uses a TN panel, which can't offer the same wide viewing angles of IPS displays, but it makes this monitor a lot more affordable than the Asus ROG Swift. Indeed, the XB281HK is nicely priced for a general 4K display, so the inclusion of G-Sync is an impressive addition.

Being based on TN technology also means a lower 1ms response time, which is essential for the most serious of gamers. A worthy entrant on our best 4K monitors list.

Best 4K monitor Ultra HD UHD displays BenQ PD3200U

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

14. 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

Digital designers will be in hardware heaven with the BenQ PD3200U thanks to this 4K monitor being calibrated for super color 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.

Best 4K monitor Ultra HD UHD displays

If you've got very little to spend but still need a 4K monitor then the Iiyama B2888UHSU is perfect for you.

15. Iiyama B2888UHSU

The best 4K monitor for a bargain basement price point

Specifications
Screen size: 28-inch
Resolution: 3840 x 2160
Refresh rate: 60Hz
Panel technology: TN
Inputs: 2 x HDMI, 1 x DisplayPort, 1 x Mini DisplayPort, 1 x VGA, 1 x DVI
USB: 4 x USB 3.0
Reasons to buy
+Very affordable 4K display+Picture-in-picture mode

Since 4K is still quite a new technology, most of the displays in this list are pricier than a lot of non-4K displays – but Iiyama's 28-inch B2888UHSU is much more reasonable.

It uses a TN panel with a 1ms response time, and although the viewing angles aren't quite as wide as you'll find with an IPS display, there are plenty of small extras that make the B2888UHSU a really good buy.

It has a copious number of video inputs, for example, a fully adjustable stand, and a picture-in-picture mode, as seen with other larger displays, so you can use two devices simultaneously with this monitor.

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 color 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 excellent deals on larger displays, too. 

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