The Best 4K Monitors (2021 Reviews)

Check out the best 4K monitors for PC gaming, console gaming and professional use as well as everything you need to know before buying one!

Having trouble deciding which 4K UHD monitor is the perfect fit for you?

You’ve come to the right place!

Whether you’re looking for an economical but good 4K monitor for everyday use, the best 4K 60Hz display for PC/console gaming, or a professional screen for work, we’ll make sure you pick the best one for your preferences and budget.

These are the best 4K monitors currently available in 2021.

As we now have a dedicated best 4K 144Hz (HDMI 2.1) gaming monitor buyer’s guide, we’ll focus on the best 4K monitors with a maximum refresh rate of 60Hz here.

TypeMonitorSizePanelRefresh RateVRRHDR 
Best Budget 4K Monitors27”IPS60HzNoneN/A
28”IPS60HzFreeSync90% DCI-P3
Best Mid-range 4K Monitors32”VA60HzFreeSync95% DCI-P3
32”VA60HzFreeSyncN/A
32”IPS60HzFreeSync95% DCI-P3
43”IPS60HzNoneHDR10
Best 4K Professional Monitors27”IPS60HzNoneN/A
32”IPS60HzNoneHDR10
*Recommended monitor - a review section will be added soon
best value

ASUS VG289Q

asus vg289q monitor
  • AMD FreeSync
  • Wide color gamut
  • Fully ergonomic stand
best overall

LG 32UN650

LG 32UN650 Monitor
  • AMD FreeSync
  • Wide color gamut
  • Height-adjustable stand
budget pick

Philips 278E1A

philips 278e1a monitor
  • Affordable
  • IPS panel

All monitors feature modern flicker-free screens with integrated low blue light filters, which will prevent eye fatigue caused by prolonged use of the display.

Rest assured that these monitors are reliable, thoroughly tested, and offer the best value for the money in their respective categories.

Additionally, feel free to leave us a comment below if you need help picking a new monitor.

You can also view our changelogs for this buying guide at the end of this article.

Best Budget 4K Monitors

Do you have a tighter budget, but really want a 4K display?

The following monitors offer excellent value for the price — just without bells and whistles that some more expensive models have.

The Pros:

  • Accurate and consistent colors
  • Wide viewing angles
  • Affordable

The Cons:

  • Tilt-only stand
  • No AMD FreeSync

About The Monitor

Looking for the most affordable 4K monitor that’s actually worth the price?

The Philips 278E1A is an excellent 4K UHD display for casual gaming, work and content consumption – and it’s available for under $300!

Image Quality

Based on an IPS panel with dithered 10-bit color support, the Philips 278E1A delivers an amazing picture quality with vibrant and precise colors. In fact, it offers better image quality than some more expensive 4K models.

Now, panel-related specs include the standard 1,000:1 contrast ratio, 178-degree wide viewing angles, a 350-nit peak brightness and a fast 4ms response time speed for minimal ghosting of fast-moving objects.

The 278E1A also offers some extension over the sRGB color space with 109% coverage, so some minor over-saturation is present, but it’s not really noticeable – what’s more important is that the entire sRGB gamut is covered.

Lastly, 4K Ultra HD resolution on 27″ screens provides you with roughly 163 pixels per inch, which results in stunning detail clarity and plenty of available screen real estate.

So, you’ll need to scale your interface for small items such as text to be readable.

4k scaling

Features

One thing that’s missing from the Philips 278E1A is support for varaible refresh rate (VRR), such as AMD FreeSync – though some gamers might be able to overlook this given the price.

You will find standard as well as advanced image adjustment tools in the monitor’s OSD menu, including gamma, sharpness, aspect ratio, color temperature, brightness, contrast, etc.

Design & Connectivity

philips 278e1a monitor back

The Philips 278E1A has ultra-thin bezels and it’s VESA mount compatible (100x100mm), but the stand is tilt-only (-5°/20°).

Connectivity includes two HDMI 2.0 ports, DisplayPort 1.2, a headphone jack and two 3W built-in speakers.

The Pros:

  • Wide color gamut and wide viewing angles
  • Plenty of features including FreeSync
  • Fully ergonomic stand

The Cons:

  • Entry-level HDR only, which is acceptable considering the price

About The Monitor

If you’re looking for something a bit more suited for gaming, we recommend the ASUS VG289Q.

Image Quality

For the most part, the VG289Q offers identical specifications as the Philips 278E1A – 350-nit peak brightness, 1000:1 contrast ratio and 10-bit color depth support.

However, it also supports a wider 90% DCI-P3 gamut coverage for more saturated and rich colors! Additionally, it has a slightly but noticeably larger 28″ screen, which still offers a high pixel density for crisp details.

Features

Moving on, the ASUS VG289Q 28″ 4K monitor offers lots of useful gaming features including Shadow Boost for better visibility in dark games, customizable crosshairs, on-screen timers and picture presets.

Further, the monitor supports AMD FreeSync which eliminates all screen tearing and stuttering between 40-60Hz/FPS (Frames Per Second) if you have a FreeSync-compatible graphics card.

FreeSync is supported over both HDMI and DisplayPort, so you can use it with compatible Xbox consoles too.

The ASUS VG289Q is G-SYNC compatible even though it’s not certified as such by NVIDIA, so your mileage might vary; some units might have minor flickering issues, though none have been reported so far.

Design & Connectivity

asus vg289q monitor back

The ASUS VG289Q has ultra-thin bezels and a fully ergonomic stand with up to 150mm height adjustment, -5°/20° tilt, +/- 62° swivel, 90° pivot and 100x100mm VESA mount compatibility.

Connectivity includes two HDMI 2.0 ports, DisplayPort 1.2, a headphone jack and two 2W built-in speakers.

Alternatives

Overall, the ASUS VG289Q is the best 4K gaming monitor around $300.

Should you not be able to find it, check out the Acer CB282K, the Samsung U28R550, or the Philips 288E2E which use the same panel and offer basically identical image quality and performance, just different design and features.

Best Mid-range 4K Monitors

Interested in a larger 32″ 4K monitor? Here are the best models!

The Pros:

  • Built-in speakers
  • Wide color gamut
  • High contrast ratio
  • AMD FreeSync

The Cons:

  • Minor ghosting in fast-paced games, mainly in darker scenes
  • Tilt-only stand
  • Narrow viewing angles

About The Monitor

Do you want an affordable 32″ monitor with 4K UHD resolution?

You’ll have to settle with one with a VA panel as the IPS models are more expensive. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing as VA panels have their advantages too.

Image Quality

This monitor’s VA panel offers a superb contrast ratio of 3,000:1. In comparison to IPS and TN panel monitors, you get deeper black shades and an overall better relation between the darkest and the brightest tones.

Now, the colors aren’t as consistent as that of the previously-mentioned IPS models, but they are good nonetheless and, in fact, much better than what you might find on any TN display.

As if that’s not enough, the BenQ EW3270U even has a wide 95% DCI-P3 color gamut and it supports HDR, which will make the colors of compatible content more punchy and lifelike.

It has a peak luminance of 300-nits, which is plenty for an enjoyable viewing experience under normal lighting conditions. Still, it’s not enough for VESA’s DisplayHDR 400 certification, which requires a peak brightness of at least 400-nits.

Regardless, thanks to the wide color gamut and high native contrast ratio, HDR content will look better than SDR. Note that this still provides just a glimpse of what HDR can actually do.

Here’s why: for a notable improvement in HDR picture quality, an LED-backlit display should have at least DisplayHDR 600 certification or ideally, DisplayHDR 1000 or over, and full-array local dimming.

VA panels also don’t have as wide viewing angles as the IPS models, so the picture will degrade a bit when looked at an angle.

Features

The BenQ EW3270U supports AMD FreeSync over both HDMI and DisplayPort with a 40-60Hz VRR range.

As it is a VA panel display, some smearing will be noticeable behind fast-moving objects, mainly in darker scenes.

Design & Connectivity

BenQ EW3270U Monitor Design

The BenQ EW3270U monitor has a tilt-only stand (-5°/15°), but it’s VESA mount compatible (100x100mm).

Connectivity options include two HDMI 2.0 ports, DisplayPort 1.4, a headphone jack, USB-C (DP Alt Mode) and dual 2W built-in speakers.

Alternatives

  • LG 32UL500 – A bit cheaper 32″ 4K monitor, but with a slower response time speed
  • Samsung S32AM70 – A 32″ 4K VA monitor with built-in smart features, such as streaming apps, DeX and Microsoft 365

The Pros:

  • Built-in speakers
  • Wide color gamut and high contrast ratio
  • AMD FreeSync

The Cons:

  • Minor ghosting in fast-paced games, mainly in darker scenes
  • Tilt-only stand
  • Narrow FreeSync range

About The Monitor

Interested in something a bit different?

Check out the Philips 328E1CA with a 1500R screen curvature!

Image Quality

Monitors with curved screens make most sense with 21:9 ultrawide displays, but some users prefer the curvature even on regular 16:9 widescreen monitors.

Usually, curved widescreen monitors ranging from 24″ to 27″ have curvatures of 1500R or 1800R, which is not that noticeable or effective, but the 1500R curve is quite eye-catching on the 32″ sized screen of the Philips 328E1CA.

The curvature provides a bit of extra depth to the picture and increases immersion, but not everyone will be a fan of it. Some will love it straight away, others will despise it, and some will just need a bit of time getting used to it.

Now, the VA panel of the Philips 328E1CA also provides better viewing angles than the previously mentioned flat-screen alternatives, so you won’t get as noticeable gamma/saturation shifts at different angles.

It has a somewhat weaker peak brightness of 250-nits and a static contrast ratio of 2,500:1, while its 120% sRGB color gamut provides some extra color vibrancy.

Features

The Philips 328E1CA monitor has a rather narrow FreeSync range of 48-60Hz, but it’s supported over both HDMI and DisplayPort.

All in all, the image quality and performance between the 328E1CA and BenQ’s flat-screen model is very similar, the main difference is that Philips’ monitor has a bit wider viewing angles and a curved screen — so, it’s all up to your preference.

Design & Connectivity

Philips 328E1CA Monitor Back

The stand of the monitor is tilt-only by -5°/20°, but the screen is VESA mount compatible via the 100x100mm VESA pattern.

Connectivity options include DisplayPort 1.2, two HDMI 2.0 ports, a headphone jack and dual 3W built-in speakers.

Alternatives

There are two more models that use the same panel, but they’re usually more expensive yet the difference in image quality, performance and features is minimal, certainly not worth the extra ~$100.

The Pros:

  • Built-in speakers
  • Wide color gamut and viewing angles
  • AMD FreeSync
  • Height-adjustable stand

The Cons:

  • Design lacks swivel/pivot
  • Not as deep blacks as that of VA panels

About The Monitor

32″ 4K IPS monitors are much more expensive (~$700+) than the VA models as they’re mainly intended for professional use, but the LG 32UN650 is available for around $450!

Obviously, it doesn’t have the premium feature of $700+ models, such as professional-grade factory-calibration, but thanks to its IPS panel, you still get consistent colors and wide viewing angles, as well as fast response time speed.

Image Quality

Here’s the deal: the LG 32UN650 has a static contrast ratio of 1,000:1, so you won’t get as deep blacks as in the previously mentioned VA models.

However, you get wide color gamut support (95% DCI-P3) and, if you have more people in the room looking at the screen, the picture won’t degrade at an angle.

Additionally, it has a fast pixel response time speed, which makes the monitor great for fast-paced games.

Sadly, there’s no sRGB emulation mode, but if you have a colorimeter, you can use the monitor for color-critical work as well.

Features

The monitor supports AMD FreeSync with a 40-60Hz range over both DisplayPort and HDMI, and you’ll find all of LG’s standard features in the OSD menu, including Black Stabilizer, various picture presets and advanced image adjustment tools.

Visit our LG 32UN650 review for more information.

Design & Connectivity

LG 32UN650 Monitor Design

The stand of the monitor is height-adjustable by 110mm, and you can tilt the screen by -5°/20° or mount it using the 100x100mm VESA pattern.

Connectivity options include DisplayPort 1.4, two HDMI 2.0 inputs, a headphone jack and dual 5W built-in speakers.

Alternatives

43″ 4K Monitors

If you’re just looking for a 43″ 4K monitor for office-related use, check out the LG 43UN700, which goes for ~$550 – $700.

When it comes to gaming, a good 4K gaming monitor, such as the Philips 436M6VBPAB goes for $800 – however, for just ~$100 more, you can get the Gigabyte Aorus FV43U with a higher 144Hz refresh rate and HDMI 2.1.

If you want a cheaper 43″ 4K display for casual gaming and content consumption, a good TV is actually a better and more cost-effective solution.

There are TVs that offer better image quality and features than similarly priced monitors and offer good enough input lag and response time for casual gaming. In fact, 43″ monitors and TVs usually share the same BGR-layout panels, which results in somewhat blurry text at native scaling.

So, we recommend checking out our best 43″ and 50″ TV buyer’s guides if you’re interested in a larger display.

Best 4K Professional Monitors

Looking for a 4K monitor for color-editing, graphic design, or similar professional use?

The following models will make sure that the content you create looks as good as it can.

We also have a dedicated guide with the best monitors for photo and video editing.

The Pros:

  • Accurate and consistent colors out of the box
  • Versatile design and rich connectivity options
  • Plenty of exclusive features

The Cons:

  • None

About The Monitor

If you’re looking for a 4K monitor for professional color-critical work, the ViewSonic VP2768-4K PRO is for you!

Image Quality

Now, you get your standard 27″ 4K IPS panel specifications, such as a 350-nit peak brightness, a 1,300:1 contrast ratio, 178° viewing angles and dithered 10-bit color depth support. However, what makes this monitor ideal for color-critical work is the Delta E < 2 factory-calibration.

While the ViewSonic VP2768-4K is ready for serious work straight out of the box, it also supports 14-bit 3D LUT and hardware calibration, allowing you to maintain flawless accuracy over time.

And that’s not all: it’s also equipped with a plethora of useful features, including preset colors (sRGB, Rec709, EBU, SMPTE-C, DICOM SIM, Native, Custom and three custom calibration profiles) and advanced image adjustment tools (6 gamma modes, 6-axis hue/saturation and sharpness).

You’ll even find some gaming features, such as Black Stabilization, but there’s no variable refresh rate support. Still, thanks to the vibrant colors and quick response time of the monitor’s IPS panel, games will look great and run smoothly.

There’s even a uniformity compensation feature that improves brightness and color uniformity, though at a cost of contrast ratio.

Design & Connectivity

viewsonic vp2768 monitor back

The ViewSonic VP2768-4K has a sturdy and versatile stand with up to 130mm height adjustment, +/- 60° swivel, +/- 90° pivot, -5°/21° tilt and 100x100mm VESA mount compatibility.

Connectivity options are excellent as well and include DisplayPort 1.2, mini-DisplayPort 1.2, two HDMI 2.0 ports, a headphone jack and a quad-USB 3.0 hub.

Alternatives

If you need a 27″ 4K monitor with a wider color gamut, check out the Acer CM3271K with 99% Adobe RGB, DisplayHDR 400 and Delta E < 2 factory-calibration.

The Pros:

  • Accurate and consistent colors out of the box
  • Versatile design and rich connectivity options
  • Plenty of exclusive features

The Cons:

  • None

About The Monitor

Friendly advice: for the price of a 32″ 4K IPS monitor with sRGB color gamut and factory calibration, you can get a smaller 27″ 4K IPS monitor with a wider Adobe RGB color gamut, so if you want a 32″ model, you have to pay the premium.

The ViewSonic VP3268-4K is essentially the 32″ version of the VP2768-4K and offers the same features, include Delta E < 2 factory-calibration, support for hardware calibration, 14-bit 3D LUT and the works.

Now, it also supports HDR10, but it can only accept and display the HDR signal, it can’t actually improve the image quality, as expected from a 32″ 4K IPS monitor at this price range.

Design & Connectivity

ViewSonic VP3268 2K PRO Monitor Back

In comparison to the 27″ variant, the VP3268-4K has a thinner bottom bezel, same ergonomic versatility and identical connectivity options plus dual 5W integrated speakers.

Alternatives

If you’re looking for something with a wider color gamut, check out the ASUS PA329C with Adobe RGB, 98% DCI-P3, 14-bit 3D LUT and Delta E < 2 factory-calibration.

Conclusion

Were you able to find the best 4K monitor for you?

If not, feel free to leave us any questions you might have in the comments below, and we will gladly assist you.

Overall, for everyday use and casual gaming, the ASUS VG289Q offers the best value for money, while the Philips 278E1A is a good cheaper alternative.

If you want a larger screen, the LG 32UN650 ensures consistent colors and performance, but the BenQ EW3270U and the Philips 328E1CA are also worth considering since they’re cheaper and offer a higher contrast ratio; however, keep in mind their slower response time and narrower viewing angles.

As far as 4K monitors for professional use go, all monitors we’ve included (and their alternatives) provide an exquisite image quality and performance, just make sure you get the display with the right specifications (proper color gamut, etc.) for you.

Updates +

  • November 24, 2021:
    – Checked up on the guide to ensure that our picks are still the best options available.
  • August 13, 2021:
    – Added the Philips 278E1A.
    – Replaced the LG 32UL500 with the BenQ EW3270U.
    – Removed the LG 27GN950 and the ASUS PG27UQ as we now have a dedicated 4K 144Hz monitor buyer’s guide.
    – Removed the Philips 436M6VBPAB.
    – Added the LG 43UN700 to the table. A dedicated review section will be added soon.
  • May 27, 2021:
    – Improved readability overall
  • February 16, 2021:
    – Added the LG 32UN650 and the Philips 328E1CA.
    – Replaced the Dell U2718Q with the ViewSonic VP2768-4K and the BenQ PD3200U with the ViewSonic VP3268-4K. Added LG’s upcoming OLED monitors and the Dell UP3221Q as high-end professional monitor alternatives to the VP3268-4K.
    – Removed the ASUS CG32UQ.

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Rob Shafer
Rob Shafer

Rob is a software engineer with a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Denver. He now works full-time managing DisplayNinja while coding his own projects on the side.