The Best 4K Monitors in 2020

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  • This article has been fact-checked for accuracy.

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Whether or not you’re deciding on a solid desktop for work, gaming, the office – a 4K monitor is something that you should definitely be looking into! 

If your work, gameplay, or sheer pleasure needs more screen ‘real estate’, 4K monitors are quickly becoming all the rage in 2020 for professionals.

Even if you’re just on the hunt for something larger than your desktop’s 13 or 15-inch screens – 4K monitors are a solid investment in the long run. 

However, it’s important to understand of course, that not every monitor is made even.

Some 4K monitors are built to reflect the best performances when gaming, while some are built for creative professionals to accommodate their graphics-heavy settings…the list goes on!

Plus, if you’re not too well-versed with tech, gadgets, or computers in the first place, it can get a little daunting to make an investment like that.

Here are all the necessary details you need to know before deciding on your best 4k monitor.


But Before That, Do You Even Need A 4K Monitor?


Before we start narrowing down for best 4K monitors, let’s define 4K first.

When we talk about 4K, we’re referring to the horizontal dimensions and screen resolution of a monitor.

So that means high-definition screens have resolutions of 1280×720 (720p).

Full HD has a resolution of 1920×1080 (1080p).

Just recently, the concept of ‘the best’ 4K display and monitors come along – and is considered ultra HD aka UHD.

Such 4K display panels are considered a premium choice, but they are indeed becoming more used amidst professionals, gamers, or creatives who have demanding work that requires large screens.

So that begs the question. Do you need a 4K monitor with such displays in the first place for what you want to do?

4K monitors won’t be necessary if you rely on a lot of portability, obviously.

But besides that, what makes it a worthwhile device is if you really require a powerhouse that would allow you to catch the smaller details in higher resolution.

The best 4K monitors are able to produce sharp, clearer images on their screens without pixels becoming visible.

A regular 4K display would measure around 27 inches in height, in average, anyway. The ones on the larger end of the spectrum can go up to 30 inches.

If you need another reason to start using a 4K monitor, it’s definitely the productivity boost you’re getting.

There are some applications out there who can make full use of 4K displays.

Apps such as Microsoft Excel, for instance, allows a user to quickly bring up and view all data on a spreadsheet – on a single widescreen monitor with 4K.

Just think about it. Cutting down on all that scrolling to see a column or a row on Excel, or Google Sheets, and just seeing all your data immediately.

Adobe Photoshop is another app that goes hand in hand with a 4K screen. Using this app, you can edit images while viewing them in much higher resolutions and really refining all the details you need in sharp, crisp quality.

This goes without saying, but monitors for gaming with the best 4K display would provide an excellent, graphic-rich experience.


What to Consider Before Buying A 4K Screen?


You’ve made up your mind about getting the best 4K resolution screen.

But each day you try to pick one out from the masses, you get even more confused about what it is you’re shopping for.

The specs and other details of each 4K resolution monitor can be confusing, so here’s a brief guide to make sense of the tech babble.

This way, you can actually narrow down what’s important to you and leave out all the rest.


• Screen Size


We mentioned that the average size of monitors with the best 4K resolutions is about 27 inches to 30 inches.

What’s your preference? If you’re in the market for a monitor that’s going to be slightly bigger, how sure are you that your desk or work table will handle a screen of that size?

You definitely want something big enough for it to give you the maximum screen resolution, but not one that’s going to be too bulky and uncomfortable to use.


• Type of Panel


A 4K monitor’s panel is basically the screen used to show the graphics. 3 main panels are:


Best For: General Work Usage


VA Panel – The best kind of panel specifically for color reproduction is basically the VA (Vertical Alignment) Panel. With a better sense of color reproduction, the VA Panel’s 4K monitors also come with excellent color brightness and color accuracy.


Best For: Gaming, Entertainment


TN Panel – The TN (Twisted Nematic) Panel was perhaps the first kind of LCD panels produced in the 4K display market and remains to be one of the most commonly used. This panel has the advantages of being of lower weight, with lower power consumption, and tends to be built much thinner than the rest.


Best For: Creative Work, Viewing Pleasure


IPS Panel – The IPS (In-Plane Switching) Panel was built to offer better color contrasts and high color accuracy. Of course, due to their slower response times and higher power consumption, the IPS Panel doesn’t make for a very good gaming 4K monitor experience—but works best if you want to watch movies, view videos, and images in sharp resolutions.


• Refresh Rate


It sounds a lot like complicated jargon, but a refresh rate essentially means how much blur you’re able to see with the naked eye when something moves fast across the screen.

Plenty of 4K monitors have a refresh rate of about 60hz.

This would mean that the monitor refreshes about 60 times per second.

You wouldn’t need to concern yourself much with refresh rates unless you’re specifically on the market for a solid gaming 4K monitor.

For instance, the usual 4K display with a refresh rate of 60hz won’t work that well as a gaming 4K monitor with a 144hz refresh rate.  

Lower refresh rates equal a higher chance of some blurring during a fast-paced scene or something like that, which in turn, might impact the experience of your gameplay a little.

If you’re only gaming casually, chances are the 60hz refresh rate won’t be much of a bother.

However, if you are a professional or competitive player, the best 4K monitors have much higher refresh rates—and would, of course, be much pricier as well.


• Aspect Ratio


An aspect ratio takes into account how wide a 4K display screen is compared to height.

Commonly, you’ll be able to find monitors out there who have about a 16:9 ratio.

There are also ultra HD wide 4K monitors right now that are becoming increasingly popular and would measure up to about 21:9.

Again, much like the inches of your 4K screen—this really depends on what preferences you have, as well as how big your work desk/space is at the end of the day.


• Connectivity


Most 4K monitors come with basic connectivity options. Those are a DisplayPort, HDMI, USB, and DVI.

Recently, manufacturers have been more open to the idea of USB-C/Thunderbolt 3 in new 4K monitors as well—so that’s something cool to keep an eye out if you want more connectivity options.


• FreeSync or G-Sync


G-Sync (Nvidia technology) and FreeSync (AMD technology) were both created to reduce ‘screen tearing’ which is a phenomenon that can occur during fast-paced gaming action.

Considering that G-Sync is a proprietary state of tech that belongs to Nvidia while FreeSync is free to use—you’ll tend to find that the latter is present in more 4K monitors on the market out there.

Regardless, the best 4K monitor for a solid gameplay experience has to have one of either.


1. LG 27UD68-W 27-Inch 4K Monitor

LG 27UD68-W 27-Inch 4K Monitor


FEATURES:

  • Screen Size: 27-inch
  • Type of Panel: IPS
  • Refresh Rate: 60hz
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 (Normal)
  • Connectivity: DisplayPort, HDMI 2.0, USB-C
  • FreeSync/G-Sync: FreeSync


This LG 4K monitor is all sleek, thin bezels built with a gorgeous matte IPS display. This is also accompanied by a glossy white back which really gives it an elegant yet minimalistic feel.

It’s equipped with all of the necessary ports (DisplayPort, USB-C, etc) so you’ll never have to purchase an additional dongle if you ever need to connect more devices.

What’s really great about this 4K display LG model is perhaps its full-suite Onscreen Control.

This feature makes it all the simpler to adjust volume brightness, picture mode presets, toggle Screen Split 2.0, and other controls from just a few mouse clicks—instead of small buttons on the monitor.

All in all, this 4K display model comes just under the $400 price tag, which really makes it an excellent choice for an entry-level monitor.

If what you’re looking for is a monitor that can cover some casual gaming, basic video, and photo editing equipped with great response times—it really does the job best.


2. HP Business Z27

HP Business Z27


FEATURES:

  • Screen Size: 27-inch
  • Type of Panel: IPS
  • Refresh Rate: 60hz
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9
  • Connectivity: DisplayPort, Mini DisplayPort, HDMI, USB Type-C
  • FreeSync/G-Sync: None


The HP Business Z27 is a 4K monitor that’s perfect so exactly what it advertises—the workday of a business professional.

Besides coming with all the necessary connectivity ports (including USB-C), this model also has exceptional color accuracy.

The HP Business Z27 4K monitor is built ergonomically, with a stand that’s also adjustable for your comfort.

Another plus point when it comes to the design of this model is also the fact that it was made to be clean and minimal, equipped with slim bezels so as to not appear like a bulky, outdated 4K display screen.

It also comes with two very useful display modes (Low Blue Light and Night) which is always a good idea if you want to reduce eye strain. Normally, you’d have to download third-party software to do this, but the HP Business Z27 really delivered here.

However, there are of course cons to this model.

This particular 4K display does not actually come with a built-in speaker or FreeSync/G-Sync. Response times are only mediocre as well, unlike other 4K monitors on the market.

Considering these two elements, it would not make the ideal gaming 4K monitor!

It does come in at a pretty cool, affordable $459 though. And if you’re looking for the best 4K monitor when it comes to the overall design and build, this is certainly one of our favorites.


3. Dell Ultrasharp U2718Q 27-Inch 4K Monitor

Dell Ultrasharp U2718Q 27-Inch 4K Monitor


FEATURES:

  • Screen Size: 27-inch
  • Type of Panel: IPS
  • Refresh Rate: 60hz
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9
  • Connectivity: HDMI, DisplayPort, Mini DisplayPort, USB 3.0
  • FreeSync/G-Sync: None


Although the Dell Ultrasharp U2718Q wasn’t initially meant to be a traditional ‘gaming’ laptop—it’s not half bad as an entry-level gaming monitor!

There’s no FreeSync or G-Sync, no doubt.

However, if you’re using this particular 4K monitor with a game controller—it provides very low input lag and high response times. This essentially means that when you’re moving the joystick around with a controller, the 4K Dell Ultrasharp monitor is going to respond much faster to the input.

For a price tag of only about $400, it’s really the best kind of deal you could get for an ultra HD device like this.

If you’re a creative professional hunting for a monitor with 4K that gives you great color accuracy, the Dell Ultrasharp performs best too.

You’re getting a pretty good color gamut that’s going to make photo editing in wide viewing angles a real treat. This comes with a good contrast ratio too!

Right off the bat, the Dell Ultrasharp also boasts the fact that it’s an HDR 4K screen. Even if that may be, we’ve noticed that the HDR features on this one aren’t as strong compared to other models that have this option built-in.

There’s nothing too fancy about the Dell Ultrasharp’s overall design. But still, it’s stand is built ergonomically—allowing you to tilt the entire 4K screen to 90 degrees.


4. BenQ EW3270U

BenQ EW3270U


FEATURES:

  • Screen Size: 32-inch
  • Type of Panel: VA
  • Refresh Rate: 60hz
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9
  • Connectivity: HDMI 2.0, DPI.4, USB-C
  • FreeSync/G-Sync: FreeSync


This particular BenQ 4K monitor is pretty unique on its own…it’s actually a screen that performs best in dark rooms!

It’s got a VA Panel that has an extremely high color contrast ratio. It’s HDR and Cinematic HDR Modes are two features that give a higher contrast ratio to true black and true white—so you’re able to view the best dynamic range of colors.

BenQ’s proprietary tech Brightness Intelligence Plus Technology (B.I.+Tech) is also a bonus feature that is able to detect ambient brightness levels as well as changes in color temperature to automatically adjust brightness levels for comfortable usage over a prolonged time.

That being said, it should come as no surprise that the BenQ is essentially marketed as a 4K gaming monitor most of the time. FreeSync by AMD is also included here and does wonders to eliminate image tearing, choppy gameplay, and improve response times—which provide really fluid frames.

It’s HDR abilities as well as automatic brightness adjustments through B.I.+Tech also makes it one of the best 4K monitors for creatives. Those that need to be hunched over Adobe Photoshop or other editing programs for extended periods of time would definitely benefit from the features of this BenQ 4K monitor.


5. Acer Predator X27

Acer Predator X27


FEATURES:

  • Screen Size: 27-inch
  • Type of Panel: IPS
  • Refresh Rate: 144hz
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9
  • Connectivity: DisplayPort 1.4, HDMI 2.0, USB 3.0
  • FreeSync/G-Sync: G-Sync


By far, the Acer Predator X27 is a monitor impossible to not stumble upon when you’re searching for the best 4K monitors in the market.

It’s going to give you a full HDR experience with a top-notch color gamut experience, with a wide and dynamic range of Adobe RGB color space.

Although it’s traditionally considered a gamer-friendly 4K gaming monitor, this is a favorite amidst creative professionals and photo editors.

Speaking to its true gaming capabilities, the Acer Predator X27 has a gorgeous 27-inch screen size that supports low input lags and lightning-fast response times.

G-Sync is also supported here, as well as wide viewing angles and a supercharged refresh rate (that’s 144hz for you!) all engineered to give you smoother gameplay.

Although the Acer Predator X27 4K gaming can reach up to 1000 nits in screen brightness—the contrast ratio lacks when it comes to low-light atmosphere.

The blacks appear in an almost grey-like color, which basically means that its contrast ratio isn’t the best out there.

That’s still far from being a dealbreaker though. The Acer Predator X27 is perhaps one of the best 4K monitors for gaming and heavy-duty creative work.

When it comes to cost, it expectedly carries some weight.

This 4K monitor can fetch up to a price close to $2,000. We would best recommend this to the smaller groups of competitive or serious gamers who need a 4K monitor with a good response time—as well as those who need a good screen for professional photo and video editing.


6. Asus ProArt PA32UC 32-Inch Monitor 4K HDR

Asus ProArt PA32UC 32-Inch Monitor 4K HDR


FEATURES:

  • Screen Size: 32-inch
  • Type of Panel: IPS
  • Refresh Rate: 60hz
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9
  • Connectivity: 2x Thunderbolt 3, DisplayPort 1.2 and 4x HDMI 2.0
  • FreeSync/G-Sync: FreeSync


Creatives out there, this one could be the best 4K monitor for you yet!  

The Asus ProArt gets downright serious about the specifications for this one. It’s got an HDR 4K monitor that can reach up to 1,000 nits of brightness, 100% sRGB coverage, and a direct-lit backlight matrix.

All in a glorious, massive 32-inch 4K display resolution screen that screams ‘wow’.  

The Asus ProArt also allows users to achieve maximum color accuracy through their own optimization.

This means that when working with different types of visual content and graphics, you can switch back and forth between color presets.

These include tweaking the presets to reflect different color gamuts, contrast ratios, color temperature, and even gamma correction if need be.

It goes without saying that these 4K resolution monitors are going to cost a pretty penny! About $1,198 to be exact.

Given that, the Asus ProArt is versatile in every sense of the word. It’s built with FreeSync—so it’s more than equipped to handle some casual, light gaming at best.  


7. LG 34BK95U UltraFine 34 Inch

LG 34BK95U UltraFine 34 Inch


FEATURES:

  • Screen Size: 34-inch
  • Type of Panel: IPS
  • Refresh Rate: 60hz
  • Aspect Ratio: 21:9
  • Connectivity: 2x HDMI, DisplayPort, 2x USB 3.0, HDCP
  • FreeSync/G-Sync: None


Anyone who knows a thing or two about the best 4K monitors in the market will tell you that the release of the LG UltraFine 34-inch model in 2018 was a massive step for the future.

And that is…the future of the 5K display!

Equipped with Thunderbolt 3 ports, this display measured 34-inches in total, which also equals a resolution of 5120×2160.

But even though it was marketed as a ‘5K screen display’, this isn’t necessarily the case.

Because even though it does have a resolution of 5,120 lines on the horizontal x-axis—the y-axis still only features 2,160 lines (much like a 4K screen).

Therefore, the LG UltraFine can much more accurately be described as a 4.5K UHD resolution display, to best describe it.  

The LG UltraFine has an ambient light sensor as well as color temperature adjustment options built-in, so you don’t have to manually adjust brightness.

It’s worth noting that the display panel isn’t a glossy screen (like the 5K iMac resolution, for instance). So, it’s best you crank the brightness up a bit to avoid annoying reflections on the screen.

The LG UltraFine 34-inch resolution model is built primarily plastic, which is perhaps the only thing we’re not crazy about for this display. The only metal element here is the stand – which needs to be sturdy in order to avoid the whole thing from falling over, but everything else is made out of plastic. 

For its screen size and overall color adjustment options, we do think that the LG UltraFine has a pretty decent price of about $1,499. 


Conclusion


There you have it! All of the above are alternatives to the best 4K monitors in the market in 2020.

It’s a lot to take in, for sure, but at the end of the day, the best 4K monitor for you can be narrowed down to just a few questions that you should ask yourself first.

What kind of work do you intend to do on your new, best 4K monitor?

How spacious is your workspace at the moment?

Are you merely looking for an entry-level device or something with a little more color accuracy, wider aspect ratio, and faster response times to perform heavy-duty work over long periods of time?

When you’re able to answer those questions, choosing from the best 4K monitors out there should be a breeze! And you’re on your way to making your best-educated decision based on your own budget, preference, and way of life—one that’s not going to break the bank.

If you’d asked us for our personal opinion, we’re super big fans of the Acer Predator X27 for gaming and heavy creative work.

On the other hand, the LG 4K UHD 27UD88-W is what we would go for if we do need a business productivity monitor that works best.  

What about you? Which one was the best for you? Let us know down below!  

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