The Best HDR Monitors (2022 Reviews)

The selection of HDR monitors is nowhere as broad as the selection of HDR TVs. If you want to get the best possible HDR for the money, then check out this HDR monitor buying guide.

If you’re in the market for an HDR monitor, you’ve probably come across terms such as ‘fake HDR’ and ‘pseudo HDR’ — and now you’re worried that you’ll end up buying a bad HDR display.

We don’t blame you!

Monitor manufacturers put HDR labels on just about anything these days, and that’s why in this buying guide, we’ll fill you in on everything you need to know about HDR when it comes to monitors.

TypeMonitorSizeResolutionPanelRefresh RateVRR 
Best True HDR Monitors34"3440x1440QD-OLED175HzG-SYNC Ultimate
48"3840x2160OLED120HzFreeSync Premium Pro
(G-SYNC Compatible)
42"3840x2160OLED120HzFreeSync Premium Pro
(G-SYNC Compatible)
49”5120x1440VA240HzFreeSync Premium Pro
(G-SYNC Compatible)
Best DisplayHDR 1000 Monitors43”3840x2160VA144HzFreeSync Premium Pro
49”5120x1440VA240HzFreeSync Premium Pro
Best DisplayHDR 600 Monitors27”
32”
2560x1440VA240HzFreeSync Premium Pro
27"2560x1440IPS240HzG-SYNC + Adaptive-Sync
32"2560x1440IPS170HzFreeSync
(G-SYNC Compatible)
32"2560x1440IPS270HzFreeSync
(G-SYNC Compatible)
27"3840x2160IPS160HzFreeSync Premium Pro
32"3840x2160IPS144HzFreeSync Premium Pro
38"3840x1600IPS144HzG-SYNC Ultimate + FreeSync
best overall

Dell AW3423DW

Dell Alienware AW3423DW Monitor
  • QD-OLED panel
  • Infinite contrast ratio
  • G-SYNC up to 175Hz

In truth, there are only three HDR displays worth considering for the sake of HDR: the Dell AW3423DW, the LG OLED48C1, and the Samsung Neo G9.

These monitors feature either OLED or LED panels with full-array local dimming (FALD), which is essential for a good HDR (High Dynamic Range) picture quality.

Here’s why: the beauty of HDR image lies in the display’s ability to produce incredibly bright and vivid details in highlights of the picture while preserving black depth and details in shadows at the same time, thus creating this ‘high dynamic range.’

Of course, a wide color gamut and a high screen resolution are also very important in making the picture look great! 

On the other hand, LED-backlit HDR monitors without proper local dimming solutions simply cannot deliver a ‘true’ HDR picture as for them to produce specific bright details, for instance, their entire screen has to adapt, which leads to overexposing of dark areas.

Regardless, some of these less capable HDR displays can still offer a noticeable improvement over the standard image i.e., SDR (Standard Dynamic Range). You won’t get the real HDR viewing experience, but rather just a glimpse of it.

You can view our changelogs for this buying guide at the end of this article. Additionally, you might want to check our HDR monitor list where you can filter the displays by local dimming zones, panel type, refresh rate, HDMI 2.1, and more!

Best True HDR Monitors

The following monitors offer everything you need for an immersive HDR viewing experience including high peak brightness, high contrast ratio, high resolution and wide color gamut! Alas, they don’t come cheap.

The Pros:

  • Infinite contrast ratio, high peak brightness, wide color gamut
  • Instant response time
  • Plenty of features, including G-SYNC up to 175Hz
  • Ergonomic stand, USB hub

The Cons:

  • No MBR
  • Risk of burn-in

About The Monitor

The Dell Alienware AW3423DW is the best HDR gaming monitor you can get right now and the good news is that it’s actually cheaper than many inferior displays!

Image Quality

Based on an OLED panel, the AW3423DW has self-emissive pixels that can individually turn off thereby providing you with true blacks and an infinite contrast ratio without any backlight bleeding, blooming, or glowing.

Another advantage of OLEDs is that the pixels can instantaneously change colors, resulting in no noticeable trailing behind fast-moving objects, making them ideal for fast-paced games.

The Dell AW3423DW is using Samsung’s new QD-OLED panel that’s enhanced with quantum dots for a wider color gamut, higher brightness, and better burn-in resistance.

It covers 99.3% of the DCI-P3 color space and 95% Adobe RGB, which is equivalent to around 149% sRGB gamut size. The colors are vibrant and rich, allowing you to watch HDR content the way its creators intended.

You’ll also find dedicated sRGB and DCI-P3 color modes with adjustable brightness and gamma in case you want to do color-critical work or to view SDR content without over-saturation.

Related:What Is sRGB Emulation Mode And Why Is It Important?

Further, the monitor has a peak brightness of 1,000-nits and it can sustain almost 300-nits when displaying a 100% white window, which is brighter than that of any other OLED currently available.

The main disadvantage of OLEDs is the risk of image burn-in.

If a static image is left on the screen for too long, some bright elements can become permanently stuck. However, as long as you use a screen saver and the monitor’s integrated features, such as Pixel Refresher and Panel Refresher, you’ll be fine. Dell even offers a three-year warranty that covers burn-in.

Moving on, the Dell Alienware AW3423DW has an ultrawide resolution of 3440×1440 pixels, which results in a pixel density of 110 PPI (pixels per inch) on its 34″ viewable screen. Overall, you get plenty of screen space with sharp details and no scaling necessary, while the ultrawide format provides you with an extended field of view in compatible games. Moreover, it’s not nearly as demanding to drive as 4K UHD.

One thing to keep in mind is that while the monitor has regular RGB subpixels, they’re in a triangular layout, so there’s some colored fringing on small text. For gaming and videos, it’s not an issue, but if you’re looking at text a lot (coding, writing), it might bother you a bit. Hopefully, Windows ClearType and MacOS HiDPI scaling can be updated to address the new QD-OLED panels.

Features

g sync compatible vs native g sync

The Dell AW3423DW is equipped with a dedicated G-SYNC module for flawless VRR (variable refresh rate) performance up to 175Hz/FPS.

The combination of the instant response time, imperceptibly low input lag and G-SYNC up to 175Hz ensures a responsive and enjoyable gaming experience. Unfortunately, MBR (Motion Blur Reduction) is not supported, which could’ve reduced the otherwise unavoidable perceived motion blur via backlight strobing.

Other features include Dark Stabilizer (improves visibility in dark scenes), crosshair overlays, on-screen timers, a refresh rate tracker, RGB lighting and more.

Check out our full Dell AW3423DW review for more information.

Design & Connectivity

Dell Alienware AW3423DW Review

The stand of the monitor is robust and versatile with up to 110mm height adjustment, -5°/21° tilt, +/- 20° swivel, +/- 4° pivot and 100x100mm VESA mount compatibility.

The screen has a subtle 1800R curvature and a semi-glossy finish with an anti-reflective treatment. So, it offers a clearer picture than that of displays with matte anti-glare coatings, but it’s not as reflective or quite as vivid as pure glossy screens.

Connectivity options include DisplayPort 1.4, two HDMI 2.0 ports (limited to 100Hz), a headphone jack, line-out and a quad-USB 3.0 hub. Due to the lack of DSC support, you’re limited to either 175Hz 8-bit or 144Hz 10-bit.

The difference between both 10-bit vs 8-bit color and 144Hz vs 175Hz is subtle in real use, so you can pick whichever you personally prefer. Most games in which you might actually notice improvements by 10-bit color are usually too demanding to be run at over 144FPS and high picture settings anyway.

Alternatives

Due to its appealing $1,300 price, there are no alternatives, though Samsung is supposed to release a monitor based on the same panel, the Odyssey G8QNB – no word on pricing or release date.

The Dell AW3423DW offers better HDR image quality and performance than any LED-backlit monitor, including the $3,000 ASUS PG32UQX with an 1152-zone mini LED full-array local dimming (FALD) backlight.

While the PG32UQX has a higher peak and sustainable brightness as well as no risk of burn-in, its FALD implementation causes blooming, and its slower response time causes trailing artifacts behind fast-moving objects; on top of that, there’s the price difference.

The same applies to other LED-backlit HDR monitors, such as the ASUS PG35VQ and the Acer X35 or the ASUS PG27UQ and the Acer X27; they’re more expensive yet offer inferior image quality and performance.

Upcoming mini LED monitors will need to be a lot more affordable in order to compete with the Dell Alienware AW3423DW, including the few 34″ 3440×1440 ultrawide models announced.

The Pros:

  • Infinite contrast ratio, decent peak brightness, wide color gamut
  • Instant response time
  • Plenty of features, including VRR and BFI up to 120Hz
  • Rich connectivity options, smart OS

The Cons:

  • Risk of burn-in
  • Not as bright as some LED or QD-OLED panels

About The Monitor

If you’d rather have a bigger display with a more conventional 16:9 aspect ratio, LG’s C1 48″ OLED TV is your best bet; here’s how it compares to the AW3423DW.

Image Quality

Unlike the Dell AW3423DW, the C1 is based on LG’s OLED panel without quantum dots. So, it has the same native advantages of OLED technology, such as instantaneous response time and infinite contrast ratio, but it’s not as bright, it doesn’t have as wide color gamut, and it’s not as resistant to burn-in.

In fact, LG’s warranty doesn’t cover burn-in, except for the high-end G1 and Z1 models.

In comparison to the AW3423DW (99.3% DCI-P3, 95% Adobe RGB, 149% sRGB), LG covers 98% of the DCI-P3 color space and ~87% Adobe RGB; 135% sRGB gamut size.

It’s also not as bright with a ~800-nit peak brightness and ~150-nits sustained for a 100% white window. Such low sustainable brightness also causes ABL (Automatic Brightness Limiter) to be triggered more frequently.

ABL kicks in to preserve the panel. So, if you’re using the C1 at around 250-nits, once you display an image that’s mostly white/bright, ABL will reduce the brightness to ~150-nits. Depending on what you’re watching, this fluctuation in brightness can become annoying.

You can prevent or alleviate this by reducing the brightness (or contrast) setting, but because the Dell AW3423DW is overall brighter, its ABL implementation is not nearly as aggressive.

Even though the LG C1 has a higher 4K UHD resolution, when it’s displayed on its 48″ viewable screen, you actually get a lower pixel density of 92 PPI in comparison to 110 PPI on the AW3423DW.

However, since you’ll be sitting further away from the screen, individual pixels still won’t be noticeable. The C1 is using a WRGB subpixel layout, so small text is not as crisp as that of monitors with the regular RGB layout, but this isn’t noticeable in games or videos.

The OLED48C1 is G-SYNC Compatible and supports AMD FreeSync Premium Pro, providing you with smooth VRR performance up to 120FPS. It also supports BFI (Black Frame Insertion) for clearer motion at a cost of picture brightness.

Check out our full OLED48C1 review for more information.

Design & Connectivity

LG OLED48C1 TV Design

The stand of the display is not adjustable, but the screen is VESA mount compatible via the 300x200mm pattern. The screen has a glossy finish, so it offers a more vivid (but also more reflective) picture.

Connectivity options include four HDMI 2.1 ports, RJ45, tuner, composite-in, both analog and digital audio jacks, three USB 2.0 ports, WiFi, Bluetooth and dual 10W integrated speakers with a 20W subwoofer.

Alternatives

Note that Gigabyte has a 48″ monitor based on the same panel as LG’s TV. However, it lacks the TV features and doesn’t really offer anything extra yet it’s more expensive. So, consider it only if it’s more affordable in your region. It has a DisplayPort 1.4 input, so it’s also worth considering if you have a powerful graphics card that doesn’t have HDMI 2.1, such as the RTX 2080, and you don’t plan on upgrading soon.

The Pros:

  • Infinite contrast ratio, decent peak brightness, wide color gamut
  • Instant response time
  • Plenty of features, including VRR up to 120Hz
  • Rich connectivity options, smart OS

The Cons:

  • Risk of burn-in
  • Not as bright as some LED or QD-OLED panels
  • No 120Hz BFI

About The Monitor

The LG OLED C2 series also features a 42″ sized model, making it more practical for regular desktop use due to its smaller screen and higher pixel density of 106 PPI.

The C2 also has a bit faster processor, but it lacks 120Hz BFI support and is currently more expensive than the 48″ C1 TV.

Check out our full LF OLED42C2 review for more information.

Design & Connectivity

LG OLED42C2 TV Design

The LG OLED42C2 has a design with legs to better fit on a regular PC desk, but there are no ergonomic adjustments apart from VESA mount compatibility. Just like the C1 series, the LG C2 TVs have glossy screen finish for more vibrant image quality, but it’s reflective.

Connectivity options are identical to the C1 series and include four HDMI 2.1 ports, RJ45, tuner, composite-in, both analog and digital audio jacks, three USB 2.0 ports, WiFi, Bluetooth and dual 10W integrated speakers (no subwoofer though).

Alternatives

In 2022, ASUS will release a 42″ monitor based on the same panel, though we have no information regarding pricing and availability yet. Either way, you might want to keep an eye on the ASUS PG42UQ.

The Pros:

  • High contrast ratio, impressive peak brightness, decent color gamut
  • Fast response time
  • Plenty of features, including VRR up to 240Hz
  • Ergonomic stand, USB hub

The Cons:

  • Expensive
  • Noticeable blooming in some scenes

About The Monitor

Now, as we mentioned earlier, even though mini LED FALD monitors are brighter than OLEDs and don’t suffer from the risk of burn-in, they offer an overall inferior HDR gaming experience due to the lower contrast ratio, blooming artifacts and slower pixel response time. However, if you want a 49″ super-ultrawide gaming monitor with good HDR image quality, the Samsung Odyssey Neo G9 is your only option.

Image Quality

This gigantic 49″ sized screen has a mini LED backlight that’s capable of reaching up to 2,000-nits of brightness for small windows and a brief time, as well as a strong 400-nits sustained brightness for SDR (600-nits for HDR) with a 100% white window. So, the monitor is overall brighter and can produce punchier highlights.

However, even though it has one of the best FALD implementations with 2048 zones, it still has over 7 million pixels, so those zones won’t be able to always effectively dim parts of the image that are supposed to be dark without some light bleeding into them from the surrounding lit zones, thus creating blooming or the halo effect.

To be fair, this is not a big issue unless you’re looking at a particularly demanding scene, such as a starfield.

The Samsung Odyssey Neo G9 also doesn’t have as vibrant colors as that of OLEDs with around 95% DCI-P3 gamut coverage (~85% Adobe RGB, ~125% sRGB gamut size).

Moving on, while the monitor is rather fast for a LED-backlit panel, some minor ghosting and overshoot can be detected with some fast-moving objects, though it won’t bother most users.

The 5120×1440 resolution results in a pixel density of 110 PPI on the 49″ sized screen of the monitor and you get a regular RGB subpixel layout, so text is sharp and clear with plenty of screen real estate available.

Lastly, the monitor supports FreeSync Premium Pro and it’s G-SYNC Compatible with a 96-240Hz range, however, VRR can cause micro-stuttering on some units, which some users might find bothersome.

Other useful features include Black Equalizer, PiP/PbP and RGB lighting.

Design & Connectivity

Samsung Odyssey Neo G9 Monitor Design

The stand of the monitor is robust and versatile with up to 120mm height adjustment, -5°/15° tilt, +/- 15° swivel and 100x100mm VESA mount compatibility, while the screen has an aggressive 1000R curvature for added immersion and a matte anti-glare coating against reflections.

Connectivity options include DisplayPort 1.4 with DSC, two HDMI 2.1 ports (limited to 144Hz), a headphone jack and a dual-USB 3.0 hub.

Alternatives

The main disadvantage of the Neo G9 is the price. For $2,500, you can actually get the Dell AW3423DW or the LG OLED48C1 for better HDR image quality and the previous Samsung Odyssey G9 version, which is the same monitor as the Neo G9 but without the mini LED FALD backlight; we’ll cover it in this article too.

TCL/CSOT is apparently working on a 49″ 5120×1440 240Hz panel with a 5000-zone local dimming solution, however, there’s no word on its pricing and release date yet.

Best DisplayHDR 1000 Monitors

The following monitors are VESA DisplayHDR 1000 certified, but they don’t have full-array local dimming. Instead, they feature only a few dimming zones which aren’t nearly as effective at creating a high dynamic range as OLED or FALD displays. Still, they can offer significant growth in picture quality in comparison to SDR.

The Pros:

  • High brightness and wide color gamut
  • Good native contrast ratio
  • FreeSync up to 144Hz
  • Rich connectivity options

The Cons:

  • Minor ghosting visible in fast-paced games, mostly in darker scenes
  • BGR subpixel layout

About The Monitor

The Gigabyte Aorus FV43U is the best 43″ 144Hz 4K gaming monitor with a decent HDR picture and HDMI 2.1 currently available.

Image Quality

Thanks to its 4K resolution, a 1000-nit peak brightness, a wide 99% Adobe RGB color gamut and a high native contrast ratio of 4,000:1, the Gigabyte FV43U offers an immersive picture quality for both HDR and SDR content.

However, there are many things to keep in mind.

First of all, it has only a few dimming zones. While these zones can push the contrast ratio up to ~7,000:1, they are nowhere near as effective as the 1152-zone or 2048-zone solutions of the previously-mentioned monitors.

So, in some scenes in video games, you will get an exceptional picture quality while other more demanding scenes (in terms of the number of required zones for efficient local dimming) won’t look as good.

In other words, you aren’t getting the true HDR viewing experience. Thanks to the display’s good specs, though, the image quality is excellent regardless.

For the price, it’s the best 43″ monitor for the Xbox Series X and PS 5 as you also get HDMI 2.1 support for 4K 120Hz.

Another thing about this monitor that you should take note of is its BGR subpixel layout instead of regular RGB, which makes text appear smudgy at 100% scaling (no scaling) when looking at the screen from up close.

This isn’t visible in video games, but if you want to do productivity work, you will need to scale the display to at least 125% to make the text appear sharp and clear, but you will lose on screen real estate.

Features

The Gigabyte FV43U supports AMD FreeSync with a 48-144Hz VRR range, and it works well (might vary from unit to unit regarding VRR brightness flickering) with compatible NVIDIA GPUs within the same dynamic range.

Other noteworthy features include Picture in Picture and Picture by Picture, Black Equalizer, crosshair overlays, various picture presets (including sRGB emulation mode) and Aim Stabilizer Sync (simultaneous backlight strobing and VRR).

Check out our Gigabyte FV43U review for more details.

Design & Connectivity

Gigabyte Aorus FV43U Monitor Design

The stand of the monitor doesn’t offer any adjustments, but it’s sturdy and VESA mount compatible (200x200mm).

Connectivity options include DisplayPort 1.4 with DSC, two HDMI 2.1 ports, USB-C (DP 1.4 Alt Mode), a headphone jack, a dual-USB 3.0 hub, two 12W built-in speakers and an integrated KVM switch.

Note that the HDMI 2.1 ports on this monitor are limited to 24 Gbps and use DSC for 4K 144Hz 10-bit RGB color. This isn’t an issue for the Xbox consoles and PC, but the PS5 will be limited to the 4:2:0 color format instead of 4:2:2.

This type of compression is not really noticeable in video games – text appears a bit smudgy when displayed on colored backgrounds, but you already get this to an extent with the default 4:2:2 chroma subsampling at 4K 120Hz on the PS5.

Alternatives

As an alternative, consider the LG OLED42C2. However, while it offers a better contrast ratio and response time performance, it can’t get as bright and you’ll have to keep the risk of burn-in in mind.

The Pros:

  • High brightness and wide color gamut
  • Good native contrast ratio
  • 10-zone local dimming solution
  • FreeSync up to 240Hz
  • Ergonomic design and rich connectivity options

The Cons:

  • Underwhelming HDR image quality for the price, but the monitor excels at other things

About The Monitor

The Samsung Odyssey G9 offers an incredibly immersive gaming experience thanks to its super ultrawide 32:9 aspect ratio with a high 5120×1440 screen resolution, a 240Hz refresh rate and quick 1ms GtG response time.

Image Quality

This 49″ super ultrawide monitor is equivalent to two 27″ 1440p displays put side by side without the bezels in between them.

Next, the pixel density is also identical to 1440p on 27″ sized monitors meaning that you’ll get sharp details and plenty of screen space. Naturally, such high resolution is very demanding, especially at higher frame rates.

In addition to its high resolution, the monitor has a strong 1000-nit peak brightness, a wide 95% DCI-P3 color gamut and an excellent static contrast ratio of 2,500:1.

Now, there are only ten dimming zones on this gigantic screen, so local dimming isn’t very effective. You’re not getting the true HDR viewing experience, but some scenes in certain video games will look amazing.

Obviously, most people will buy this gaming monitor because of its big screen size and high resolution paired with a quick refresh rate while the HDR support is just a bonus.

For solely HDR purposes, there are better monitors and TVs at this price range available.

Features

Both AMD’s FreeSync Premium Pro and NVIDIA’s G-SYNC Compatible are supported over DisplayPort with a 60-240Hz VRR range.

Further, to get 5120×1440 at 240Hz, you will need an AMD Navi or NVIDIA Turing (or newer) graphics card with DisplayPort 1.4 DSC support. Otherwise, you’ll be limited to 120Hz at 5120×1440.

Be sure to check how your favorite games handle the 32:9 aspect ratio as video games that don’t support it will be displayed with black borders at the sides.

Other features include Black Stabilizer (for better visibility in darker games), custom crosshairs, pre-calibrated picture presets and Picture by Picture.

Visit our Samsung C49G95T review for more info!

Design & Connectivity

samsung odyssey c49g95t monitor design

The stand of the monitor offers height adjustment up to 120mm, swivel by +/- 15°, tilt by -5°/15° and 100x100mm VESA mount compatibility.

It also sports an aggressive 1000R screen curvature for added immersion and RGB lighting at the back of the monitor.

Connectivity options include two DisplayPort 1.4 inputs, one HDMI 2.0 port, a headphone jack and three USB ports (2x USB 3.0 downstream + 1x USB upstream).

HDMI 2.0 maxes out at 5120×1440 60Hz or 3840×1080 120Hz.

Best DisplayHDR 600 Monitors

Monitors with DisplayHDR 600 certification have a peak brightness of 600-nits, a wide color gamut and some sort of local dimming implemented. While they cannot get as bright as the HDR1000 models, they still offer a notable improvement over standard displays at a (usually) reasonable price.

The Pros:

  • Good brightness and wide color gamut
  • Strong native contrast ratio
  • 8-zone local dimming solution
  • FreeSync up to 240Hz
  • Ergonomic design with rich connectivity options

The Cons:

  • 1000R curvature too steep for some users

About The Monitor

The Samsung Odyssey G7 is available as both 27″ and 32″ models: the Samsung C27G75T and the Samsung C32G75T.

Now, both monitors offer identical features and performance, but the 27″ model offers a higher pixel density (108 PPI) for sharper details whereas the 32″ variant has a bigger screen — but a lower pixel density (93 PPI) and a higher price.

Image Quality

These 1440p gaming monitors also have DisplayHDR 600 certification with a peak brightness of 600-nits, a static contrast ratio of 2,500:1 and a wide 95% DCI-P3 color gamut.

They have a local dimming solution, too, though there are only eight zones.

However, because 1440p is a lot less demanding to drive than 4K, these 240Hz gaming monitors offer a lot more responsive gaming experience, especially in fast-paced video games.

Plus, the Samsung G7 has a very fast 1ms GtG pixel response time speed for no visible ghosting or smearing behind fast-moving objects.

Features

FreeSync Premium Pro and ‘G-SYNC Compatible’ are supported with a 60-240Hz and 80-240Hz VRR range, respectively.

Other features include Black Equalizer (improves visibility in dark areas in video games), various pre-calibrated picture presets and RGB lighting.

Visit our Samsung C32G75T review for more information.

Design & Connectivity

samsung c32g75t monitor

The stand of the monitor is quite sturdy and offers a wide range of ergonomics including up to 120mm height adjustment, -9°/13° tilt, +/- 15° swivel, 90° pivot and 100x100mm VESA mount compatibility while the screen has a steep 1000R curvature.

Connectivity options include two DP 1.4 ports, HDMI 2.0b, a dual-USB 3.0 hub and a headphone jack.

You will need a GPU with DP 1.4 DSC support to take full advantage of the monitor. With older cards, you’ll be limited to 1440p 240Hz with 8-bit color.

Alternatives

The upcoming Samsung Odyssey Neo G8 series will consist of 32″ 4K 240Hz and 32″ 4K 165Hz 1000R curved VA panels with 1ms GtG response time, FreeSync, HDMI 2.1 and 1196-zone mini LED FALD.

The Pros:

  • G-SYNC up to 240Hz
  • High pixel density, wide color gamut, and strong peak brightness
  • 32 dimming zones
  • Fully ergonomic design and extensive connectivity options

The Cons:

  • No DSC
  • No sRGB clamp
  • IPS glow and mediocre contrast ratio (as expected from this panel technology)

About The Monitor

Would you rather have a flat-screen 27″ 1440p 240Hz IPS gaming monitor with good HDR image quality?

Check out the Dell Alienware AW2721D.

Image Quality

In comparison to the Samsung G7, the Dell AW2721D has a lower static contrast ratio of 1,000:1 meaning that blacks won’t be as deep.

However, it has more consistent and vibrant colors thanks to its wide 98% DCI-P3 color gamut, as well as wider viewing angles.

Such striking colors along with a high 600-nit peak brightness and a 32-zone local dimming solution result in excellent HDR picture quality.

Sadly, there’s no sRGB mode that would provide you with a restricted ~100% sRGB color gamut for better accuracy.

Features

The monitor is equipped with a native G-SYNC module that ensures flawless VRR performance up to 240Hz with compatible NVIDIA cards.

You can also use the standard Adaptive-Sync for VRR if you have an AMD card.

Next, the G-SYNC module provides you with variable overdrive, which effectively prevents ghosting at high FPS and overshoot at low FPS.

Other features include different picture presets, Dark Stabilizer, AlienFX RGB lighting, an on-screen timer and a refresh rate tracker.

Visit our Dell AW2721D review for more information.

Design & Connectivity

Dell Alienware AW2721D Monitor

The stand of the monitor is stylish and sturdy with a good range of ergonomics including up to 130mm height adjustment, +/- 20° swivel, 90° rotation, -5°/21° tilt and 100x100mm VESA mount compatibility.

Connectivity options include two HDMI 2.0 ports (max 144Hz), DisplayPort 1.4 (without DSC support), a headphone jack, line-out and a quad-USB 3.0 hub.

The lack of DSC support over DP means that you’ll be limited to 8-bit color at 240Hz or 10-bit color at 144Hz. However, the difference between 8-bit and 10-bit color isn’t really noticeable in video games.

Alternatives

The upcoming Cooler Master GP27-FQS 27″ 1440p 165Hz 1ms IPS monitor will feature a 576-zone mini LED FALD for $700; no word on release date though.

A few 27″ 1440p 300Hz 1ms IPS gaming monitors with G-SYNC and 576-zone mini LED FALD systems are announced for 2022 as well, but their release date and pricing is unknown at the moment.

The Pros:

  • Good brightness and wide Adobe RGB color gamut
  • 16 dimming zones
  • FreeSync up to 170Hz
  • Ergonomic design and rich connectivity options

The Cons:

  • IPS glow and mediocre contrast ratio (as expected from this panel technology)

About The Monitor

Want a larger 32″ 1440p flat-screen gaming monitor with 240Hz and DisplayHDR 600?

You’re going to love the Acer Predator XB323UGP!

Image Quality

This gaming monitor covers an even wider 99% Adobe RGB color gamut (~160% sRGB) which results in more diverse blues and greens, but a bit less saturated reds in comparison to the 98% DCI-P3 gamut of the Dell AW2721D.

Further, it has a strong 600-nit peak brightness, but only 16 dimming zones, which along with the mediocre 1,000:1 contrast ratio makes for grayish blacks in comparison to VA panels.

Here’s the kicker: the Acer XB323UGP is all about color, and HDR image quality is gorgeous! The colors are also consistent and there’s a factory-calibrated sRGB mode in case you want an accurate sRGB color output.

Features

AMD FreeSync is supported with a 48-170Hz VRR range, and the monitor is certified by NVIDIA as G-SYNC Compatible, thus ensuring smooth performance.

Further, the quick 1ms response time speed of the monitor eliminates all ghosting behind fast-moving objects.

Other features include custom crosshairs, a refresh rate tracker and Black Boost.

Visit our Acer Predator XB323UGP review for more information.

Design & Connectivity

Acer XB323UGP Back

The stand of the monitor is well-built and versatile with up to 130mm height adjustment, +/- 20° swivel, -5°/23° tilt, 90° pivot and 100x100mm VESA mount compatibility.

Connectivity options include DisplayPort 1.4, two HDMI 2.0 ports, a headphone jack, two 3W built-in speakers and a quad-USB 3.0 hub.

Alternatives

  • ASUS ROG Swift PG329Q – Based on the same panel, it’s $100 cheaper and offers ELMB-Sync backlight strobing technology. However, it can only show HDR image for 60 – 90mins before turning off (as a lifespan preserving feature that cannot be disabled) and it has DP 1.2 input that only supports 10-bit color depth up to 120Hz at 1440p. So, for HDR, the XB323UGP is better.
  • Acer Predator XB323UGX – A 240Hz (270Hz OC) version of this monitor that’s $100 – $200 more expensive. If you can get a frame rate higher than 170FPS, then it’s worth considering; otherwise, you won’t get any improvements in comparison to the XB323UGP.

The Pros:

  • Accurate and vibrant colors
  • High pixel density
  • Plenty of features including FreeSync up to 160Hz, HDMI 2.1
  • Quick response time speed
  • Ergonomic stand and rich connectivity options

The Cons:

  • Design lacks swivel option
  • IPS glow and mediocre contrast ratio (as expected from this panel technology)

About The Monitor

The LG 27GP950 is the best 27″ HDR monitor with an IPS panel you can get under $1,000.

Image Quality

Thanks to its Nano IPS panel, the LG 27GP950 offers a wide 98% DCI-P3 (135% sRGB) color gamut for vibrant and lifelike colors.

The contrast ratio is limited to ~1,000:1, and there are only 16 dimming zones, so blacks won’t be as deep and vivid as those of the two previously-mentioned DisplayHDR 600 monitors with VA panels.

However, besides the superior color accuracy and consistency of the IPS panel, you also get wider viewing angles and faster pixel response time speed.

In fact, the LG 27GP950 is one of the first 4K IPS monitors with a 1ms response time for zero ghosting in fast-paced games.

Features

Moving on, the monitor supports AMD FreeSync Premium Pro, and it’s certified as G-SYNC Compatible by NVIDIA, thus ensuring smooth VRR performance with a 48-160Hz dynamic range supported.

It also supports HDMI 2.1, making it ideal for the PS5 and XSX.

Other noteworthy features include custom crosshairs, Black Stabilizer (improves visibility in darker games), advanced picture adjustment tools, various picture presets and fancy 48-LED RGB lighting at the back of the monitor.

For more information, visit our full LG 27GN950 review, which is the same monitor but without HDMI 2.1.

Design & Connectivity

LG 27GP950 Monitor Design

The LG 27GP950 boasts an innovative 4-sides borderless design with ultra-thin bezels at all four sides of the monitor.

Further, the stand is sturdy and offers a good range of ergonomics, including up to 110mm height adjustment, -5°/15° tilt, 90° pivot and 100x100mm VESA mount compatibility.

Connectivity options include two HDMI 2.1 ports, DisplayPort 1.4 with DSC (Display Stream Compression), a headphone jack and a dual-USB 3.0 hub.

Alternatives

Keep in mind the upcoming 27″ 4K 144Hz IPS mini LED FALD gaming monitors, such as the Cooler Master GP27-FUS (576-zone).

The Pros:

  • Accurate and vibrant colors
  • High pixel density
  • Plenty of features including FreeSync + MBR up to 144Hz, HDMI 2.1
  • Quick response time speed
  • Ergonomic stand and rich connectivity options, KVM

The Cons:

  • Design lacks pivot option
  • Not as high contrast ratio as that of VA panels

About The Monitor

If you want a 32″ sized 4K 144Hz gaming monitor, the MSI MPG321UR-QD is our top recommendation.

Image Quality

The monitor is based on a 32″ IPS panel with a full Adobe RGB color gamut coverage, which results in gorgeous and vibrant colors. You will also find dedicated sRGB and DCI-P3 color modes that you can use depending on the content you’re watching.

It supports HDR with a 600-nit peak brightness (400-nit typical), a 1,000:1 contrast ratio and has 16 dimming zones. So, since it has the same number of dimming zones as the 27″ 27GP950, they won’t be as effective.

However, since you’re getting a larger screen and a wider color gamut at the same price, we find the MPG321UR-QD to offer a better value for money overall as well as a more immersive viewing experience.

The pixel response time speed is not quite as fast as that of the LG 27GP950 and there’s minor overshoot at low FPS with VRR enabled, but it’s perfectly fine for casual gaming. The monitor is not intended for serious competitive gaming anyway due to its large screen size and demanding resolution.

Features

The MSI MPG321UR-QD supports AMD FreeSync with a 48-144Hz VRR range and it offers stable G-SYNC Compatible performance. Moreover, it supports backlight strobing (MPRT-Sync) that can be used at the same time as VRR.

Other features include Night Vision, PiP/PbP, various picture presets, Mystic Light RGB LED strip at the back of the monitor, crosshair overlays and an ambient light sensor.

Check out our full MSI MPG321UR-QD review for more information.

Design & Connectivity

MSI MPG321UR QD Monitor Design

The stand of the monitor is sturdy and ergonomic with up to 100mm height adjustment, -5°/20° tilt, +/- 30° swivel and 100x100mm VESA mount compatibility.

Connectivity options include two HDMI 2.1 ports, DisplayPort 1.4 with DSC, USB-C (DP 1.4 Alt Mode, 15W PD), six USB-A 2.0 ports, three USB-B 3.0 ports, a microphone jack, a headphone jack, an audio combo jack and a built-in KVM switch.

Alternatives

Keep in mind the upcoming 32″ 4K 144Hz IPS gaming monitors with mini LED FALD backlights, such as the Acer X32 FP (576-zone).

The Pros:

  • Accurate and vibrant colors
  • High pixel density
  • Plenty of features including G-SYNC up to 144Hz
  • Quick response time speed
  • Ergonomic stand and rich connectivity options

The Cons:

  • IPS glow and mediocre contrast ratio (as expected from this panel technology)
  • No sRGB emulation mode

About The Monitor

When it comes to ultrawide HDR monitors, the Dell AW3423DW actually offers a drastically better HDR image quality than the more expensive AW3821DW.

However, the Dell AW3821DW still has a bit larger screen, higher sustainable brightness and no risk of permanent burn-in, which some users might prefer.

As this is the ‘best HDR monitor’ buyer’s guide, the AW3423DW is the obvious pick, but if you mainly want a 38″ ultrawide monitor that also has a decent HDR picture quality, the AW3821DW is worth considering. Alternatively, consider waiting for a 38″ QD-OLED variant, though there’s no confirmation that it’s planned.

Image Quality

The monitor is based on LG’s 37.5″ 3840×1600 Nano IPS panel with a wide 95% DCI-P3 color gamut, rapid 1ms GtG response time speed and wide 178° viewing angles.

There’s no sRGB emulation mode, so you’ll need a colorimeter to profile the monitor for proper color output without over-saturation when watching sRGB content.

Some users prefer the extra vibrancy the wide color gamut offers in this case though, despite it not being intended by content creators.

Another downside of the AW3821DW is the mediocre static contrast ratio of 1,000:1. While there are 32 dimming zones, it’s not enough to significantly improve the contrast.

HDR content gets a boost in peak brightness to 600-nits from 450-nits.

Features

The monitor has a native G-SYNC module for flawless VRR performance and it also supports Adaptive-Sync for AMD graphics cards.

However, as there’s no DSC support, you will have to drop the color depth to 8-bit for 144Hz. For 10-bit color, you’ll need to lower the refresh rate to 120Hz.

As the 3840×1600 resolution is quite demanding, this won’t be a big issue as you’ll hardly push 120FPS at this resolution in the latest titles with ultra settings and 10-bit color.

In fact, undemanding games mostly don’t support 10-bit color anyway, or there’s no visual difference, in which case you can just use the monitor at 144Hz without any downsides.

Other noteworthy features include Dark Stabilizer, various pre-calibrated picture presets and RGB lighting at the back.

Design & Connectivity

Dell Alienware AW3821DW Monitor Design

The design features a subtle 2300R screen curvature and decent ergonomics with up to 130mm, tilt by -5°/21°, +/- 20° swivel and 100x100mm VESA mount compatibility.

Connectivity options include DisplayPort 1.4, two HDMI 2.0 ports, a headphone jack and a quad-USB 3.0 hub. 

Alternatives

  • LG 38GN950 – LG’s monitor is based on the same panel with DisplayHDR 600, but fewer 12 dimming zones and no G-SYNC module. It has an sRGB mode, but usually goes for ~$400 more than the AW3821DW.

Conclusion

Found the best HDR monitor for you?

Feel free to leave us any questions you might have in the comments below!

All in all, you certainly won’t be disappointed with any of the ‘true’ HDR displays, but we recommend the Dell AW3423DW, followed by the LG OLED48C1 and OLED42C2.

As for the other included monitors, HDR support is more of a secondary feature, so pick one that suits you best regarding screen size, resolution, panel type, refresh rate and price.

Changelog +

  • April 21, 2022:
    – Added the LG OLED42C2.
  • March 11, 2022:
    – Replaced the ASUS PG35VQ, PG27UQ and PG32UQX with the Dell AW3423DW.
  • February 1, 2022:
    – Included upcoming monitors announced at CES as alternatives where appropriate.
  • December 11, 2021:
    – Added review summaries for the monitors that were missing them.
  • November 24, 2021:
    – Checked up on the guide to ensure that our picks are still the best options available.
  • August 10, 2021:
    – Added the ASUS PG32UQX, the Samsung Neo G9, the LG OLED48C1, and the Acer XB323UGX to the table; dedicated review sections will be added soon.
    – Replaced the Philips 436M6 with Gigabyte FV43U, the Acer XB323UGP with ASUS PG329Q, the LG 27GN950 with LG 27GP950, the LG 38GN950 with Dell AW3821DW, and the LG 32UL500 with BenQ EW3270U.
  • December 15, 2020:
    – Added the Dell AW2721D and the Acer XB323UGP.
    – Removed the ASUS CG32UQ as it’s too expensive. The Samsung G7 is a much better option for the money.

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The Best Monitors For Photo And Video Editing (2022 Reviews)
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.