Best 4k display for desktop?

zen

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Jun 26, 2003
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I think this needs to be the next upgrade for my desktop PC - having been using my 4k X1 Carbon laptop the last week, whenever I come to use my 27" 2560 x 1440p desktop monitor (Asus PG279Q ROG Swift 27"), all I can see are pixels and pixels and pixels!

I don't want to break the bank, but I think it's time for 4k. What are people using? I do some gaming on this machine, although it only has an Nvidia 1070 graphics card in it at the moment.
 

AlphaSquared

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Sep 8, 2019
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@hajime -- I've given some thought to moving to a 4K TV as well to replace a pair aging 27" Apple Cinema displays.

The Sony XBR900E 4K HDR 49" TV or even 55" looks like a good candidate.
Another includes the LG - 55" Class - LED - Nano 9 Series - 2160p - Smart - 4K UHD TV



Most important, will my Mac Pro (currently running macOS Mojave Version 10.14.6) have the capability to enable me to get:
  • Comparable resolution, detail, clarity of text as at least the Cinema Displays?
  • As part of my computing environment, does a 4K TV make sense for use as a desktop display?
Can you say any more about your experience?
Any objective assessments and guidance vis-vis the alternatives appreciated.
 

AlphaSquared

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Sep 8, 2019
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@hajime ... Follow up:

I don't play games on my system. I do watch some videos, but I don't watch them critically.

I program, create and edit documents in Pages, Numbers, and KeyNote), and produce architectural and engineering drawings (largely why curve displays don't interest me. I often find myself holding a straight edge up to the display or using hairlines -- a curved display just gets funny)
 

hajime

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Jul 23, 2007
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One important thing to consider is to have chroma 4:4:4 support. Sometimes I have difficulty in seeing things on the top left due to the large screen. Other than that, it is excellent.
 

maflynn

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I don't want to break the bank, but I think it's time for 4k.
Did you ever settle on a 4k monitor?

I'm poking around, looking for one, and one thing I noticed is some inexpensive 4k monitors, run at 30Hz at 4k. I'm having trouble finding a decently priced display. I guess I'm spoiled, I've been rocking with an 23" Apple LED Cinema Display for 10 years and its going strong. Its only 1920 × 1200 and having my laptop be 4k and this display 1920 × 1200 makes for some oddities when using them together. In all likelihood this monitor will be going to my daughter so that's why I'm looking for one now.

I have found this: LG 27UL500-W 27" 16:9 4K HDR FreeSync IPS Gaming Monitor and this monitor LG 27UD68P-B 27" 16:9 4K FreeSync IPS Monitor

Let me just add, there are some reviews on Amazon but UDP68 failing or having significant burn-in, or bleed in after a year of usage which is a bummer and I've only heard bad things from LG's customer support
 
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maflynn

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I'm necroing this thread, I'm looking to get a decent 4k display for black friday, any suggestions?

Many of the less expensive monitors do not run at 60Hz, and others seem to have burn in issues, which I absolutely do not want.
 

gavroche

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Oct 25, 2007
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I'm necroing this thread, I'm looking to get a decent 4k display for black friday, any suggestions?

Many of the less expensive monitors do not run at 60Hz, and others seem to have burn in issues, which I absolutely do not want.
I've been using this Philips 27" 4K for a little bit now, and it's great. In regards to 60hz... it is a 60hz monitor, but it depends on the cable choice. With USB-C connected, it shows it running at 30hz... and that option is grayed out. With hdmi, it appears to be at 60. However, I was having issues with the computer (new Mac Mini) not wanting to display anything after rebooting while connected via hdmi, and don't have this issue with usb-c.


edit: seems pretty similar spec-wise to the LG you referenced above. Both are IPS, with good color accuracy.
 
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maflynn

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@gavroche,
Thanks for the response,

I did a lot of research last night, and I have a new list :)
tl;dr: I like the Dell U2718Q and BenQ EW3270U, though the LG models are in the hunt ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

My usage is working on servers, remoting in to those and other desktops, my hobby is photography, so color accuacy is a plus, and I do enjoy the occasional game, so something that can handle that phase decently. While I want a 4k monitor, I'm not interested in 4k gaming, I'll select a lower resolution, I don't think my laptop could handle 4k gaming :eek:

I'm leaning towards the Dell, though PWM is giving me pause, and the Benq, simply because a 32" will require less scaling.

Dell Ultrasharp U2718Q 27-Inch 4K IPS Monitor $400 - best color reproduction in my list, great for photo editing. Uses PWM and so this may be an issue with me, as I don't want headaches and/or eye fatigue with flickering.

Displayninja Review

To start with, the Dell P2715Q monitor is based on an IPS panel which ensures precise and consistent color reproduction. Further, it supports 10-bit color via dithering (8-bit + FRC) for 1.07 billion colors, and it’s factory-calibrated at Delta E < 3 with 99.9% sRGB gamut coverage.

IPS panel displays also have wide viewing angles of 178° both horizontally and vertically which prevent the image from shifting in color and contrast when it’s looked at an angle.

Other panel-related specs include a 350-nit peak brightness and a 1,000:1 static contrast ratio which is standard for an IPS display at this price range; Although you might find a bit brighter displays, they won’t have as accurate color reproduction.

4K Ultra HD resolution provides plenty of screen space and stunning detail clarity on the 27″ screen of the Dell P2715Q due to the high pixel-per-inch ratio of 163 PPI.

LG 27UL650-W 27 $400 - Displayninja has this to be a great budget gaming display. Amazon reviews seem good.

Displayninja review
Just like most 4K IPS monitors at this price range, the LG 27UK650-W is based on an IPS panel with 10-bit color depth (8-bit + FRC), 99% sRGB color gamut, a 1,000:1 static contrast ratio, and a 350-nit peak brightness.
For PC use, we recommend the LG 27UL500 or the LG 27UL550 instead as it offers nearly just as good SDR image quality for significantly less money

LG 27UL500-W 27-Inch $300 - more of an entry level IPS Monitor then the 27UL650. Seems to have less brightness at 350nits

Displayninja review
Based on an AH-IPS panel with 10-bit color achieved through dithering (8-bit + FRC) and 98% sRGB color gamut, the LG 27UL500 ensures accurate, vibrant, and consistent colors.

With proper calibration, it’s even fit for entry-level color-critical work and some basic content creation. If you are a professional designer though, there are better 4K color-accurate displays that are factory-calibrated for better precision.

BenQ EW3270U 32 Inch 4K HDR Monito $439 - out of the list, this is the only 32 inch, though its a VA panel, but at 439, its hard to beat.

Displayninja review
a VA panel with true 10-bit color support covering 95% of the DCI-P3 color space (100% Rec709 and 100% sRGB)
The BenQ EW3270U 4K HDR FreeSync monitor is aimed at those looking for a luxurious display for home entertainment.

It’s great for console gaming, watching movies, and everyday PC use due to its plethora of exclusive features, immersive image quality, and top-notch performance.

However, if you need a monitor just for gaming, there are cheaper alternatives out there.
 

maflynn

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I wanted to add more information that others may find helpful

For LG, it seems the models that use UL in the name, have less ergonomic features, whereas the UK models do. LG 27Uk650 and LG 27U850 are identical except that the 850 has USB-C.

There seems a lot of chatter about LG's quality and/or customer support.

On the Dell side, factory calibration is good, but greens can be over saturated.

I'm liking this comparison:

Image quality-wise, the LG is edging Dell, but overall they're nearly tied. I like the idea that dell monitor seems to carry a 3 year warranty (at least that's what amazon's page shows for the dell).
 

Erehy Dobon

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I was under the impression that the middle letters in the LG monitor model numbers identify the model year; thus UL monitors follow the UK monitors in order of release date.

The first number is naturally the screen’ diagonal measurement. The trailing numbers indicate the product line level, so 650s have more features than the 500s.

Not sure what “ergonomic features” [sic] are concerning monitors.

I own the 27UL650-W and am satisfied with the price-performance value for my mundane home usage. It runs 2160p at 60Hz, has HDR and USB-C. Those were the primary selling points I was interested in and this model checked all of those boxes.
 

maflynn

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I was under the impression that the middle letters in the LG monitor model numbers identify the model year; thus UL monitors follow the UK monitors in order of release date.
It could be but from what I found the only difference was to the stand.

Not sure what “ergonomic features” [sic] are concerning monitors.
How much does the stand turn, can go up or down. The UL doesn't increase/decrease the height AFAIK, but the UK model does. From what I've researched (not that I'm an expert), all of the specifications are the same. Hence my mentioning the ergonomics, or if you will the ability to adjust the monitor to better face you on your desk.
 

Erehy Dobon

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The LG 27UL650 can be adjusted in height by 110mm. This is on page 5 of the owner's manual.

The monitor can be pivoted 90 degrees clockwise for operation in portrait mode. To do so requires the screen to be raised to the maximum height prior to rotation. Page 6 of the owner’s manual.

Anything else?

(Note: one can download the manual free of charge from LG’s website.)
 

maflynn

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Just an update, I'm pivoting away from the 4k resolution, I think I may be better off with a larger display but lower resolution - I'm looking at the ultra-wide form factors. I have a couple of monitors in my cart at amazon - waiting for black friday.

As a fallback, the 4k monitor (if I change my mind), that I'll probably get is the LG 27Uk850, which is also in my cart.
 

GoldfishRT

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Just an update, I'm pivoting away from the 4k resolution, I think I may be better off with a larger display but lower resolution - I'm looking at the ultra-wide form factors. I have a couple of monitors in my cart at amazon - waiting for black friday.

As a fallback, the 4k monitor (if I change my mind), that I'll probably get is the LG 27Uk850, which is also in my cart.
It's funny. We went opposite directions. I was very close to buying a UK650 but ended up ordering a U2718Q. I don't think I can shake high-dpi displays at this point.

Now to buy an overly expensive dock to hook up my MacBook. :rolleyes:
 
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maflynn

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Now to buy an overly expensive dock
I have the monitor in my basket at amazon, in fact I have a few and I'm noticing over the past couple of days, the prices are increasing (some a little, some a lot) and I think its Amazon playing games. 1. to trick me into buying now, but also more insidious, raising the price so they can lower the price on black friday. I'll pay the say next week but it looks like they lowered it since most people won't notice the price hike
 

maflynn

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As an update, I picked up a 34" LG ultrawide and it's a fantastic monitor. I hadn't realized how many oranges I have where my computer is until I snapped the picture, the wall, the window covering and my desk :oops:

I opted for an ultrawide over the 4k for the simple reason of pixel density, a 4k displays produce smaller images which require an increase in scaling. Since one of my main objectives in a new monitor is more screen real estate, scaling up would have mitigated that desire to some degree. I'm quite happy with the 3440 x 1440 resolution, I can easily see everything without any scaling.

IMG_5876.JPG
 

Eliot Mess

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I opted for an ultrawide over the 4k for the simple reason of pixel density, a 4k displays produce smaller images which require an increase in scaling. Since one of my main objectives in a new monitor is more screen real estate, scaling up would have mitigated that desire to some degree. I'm quite happy with the 3440 x 1440 resolution, I can easily see everything without any scaling.
I'm lookng for some clarity on the above ... and for my text fonts, which got screwed up by upgrading an MBP_late2013 from Mavericks to Mojave. I've tried all the tweaks on the twin Dell UltraSharps, and via Terminal; I'm still missing what I had. (I write and edit a lot.)

MAFlynn, did you find the 34" LG ultrawide's fonts crisp and clear, not just in graphical tools but in say, Word 2019, email?
 

cube

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I am using a curved 48" 3D 4K HDR QLED Smart TV.

It is a big too big for Mac. I was going to buy a 43" because there are no 46", but I found a great deal.

I started with the default 125% scaling, but now I am at 105% to fit taller pages. So I guess 48" was a good idea for PC.
 
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maflynn

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MAFlynn, did you find the 34" LG ultrawide's fonts crisp and clear, not just in graphical tools but in say, Word 2019, email?
I find the text to be quite crisp, and I'm really happy overall with it. The majority of my time is not using graphical tools but rather apps for my job, such as remote access, gotomypc, office apps and what not.

I can't answer about your issues with macOS largely because I'm using a ThinkPad
 

xraydoc

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I have a Dell 32" 4K UP3216Q that my workplace gave me with my home workstation.
Amazing display. Bright, excellent grayscale accuracy (important for my line of work) and the screen has a matte finish to cut down on glare.
 

PeterJP

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In case people are still interested, we're using a couple of BenQ BL2711 screens at work for photo and video editing and the users are quite happy with them. As far as screens that are not in the highly calibrated category go, these BenQs are more than OK.
 

zeiter

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I'm looking for two 25 inch 1440p to replace my 23 and 24 inch HD monitors. The new one from dell U2520D supports 99% sRGB and 95% DCI-P3. I hope I wont have to scale it.

I thought about ultrawide but I'm kind of not sure because I will still have to open and close windows to open programs...with two screens, I can let some programs run on the second screen.