PC monitors have been evolving at a quick pace in recent years. Not only do you have higher resolutions and faster refresh rates, but you also get all kinds of sizes and aspect ratios now. One such form factor that has become very popular in recent years, is ultrawide. Ultrawide monitors have become a preference with many users due to the sheer screen real estate you get. They seem like the better solution, compared to stacking two monitors side by side.
Ultrawide monitors also serve a dual purpose now. Not only does the increased horizontal screen real estate help greatly with productivity, but it also gives a wider field of view in supported games. When it comes to buying the best ultrawide monitor, there are a lot of great options out there. Here are our picks for the best ultrawide monitors you can buy right now.
Related: The best monitors for work and play you can get
Buying the best ultrawide monitor
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There are a lot of things to consider when buying an ultrawide monitor. Like regular monitors, the size, resolution, and refresh rates are the key parameters. However, with ultrawide monitors, these parameters have a lot of variation, mixing, and matching, making the decision somewhat complicated.
We recommend you start with size. If you decide which size of ultrawide monitor you want, the rest of the process gets simpler. Note you’ll need to keep the aspect ratio in mind here, as ultrawide monitors take up significantly more horizontal desk space compared to similarly-sized widescreen (16:9) monitors. Take a look at this quick resolution guide to the common wide and ultrawide resolutions available on monitors today.
On the side of aspect ratios, the standard resolution is 21:9, with 32:9 being the other popular ratio. If you want a gaming monitor, then you’re going to have to pick one with a higher refresh rate. Before you buy one though, make sure the graphics processor in your PC or laptop can actually support the resolution and refresh rate of the monitor. Common resolutions include 2,560 x 1,080 (WFHD) and 3,440 x 1,440 (UWQHD).
Some high-end monitors have also started going past 5K, with resolutions like 5,120 x 1,440 (Dual QHD or DQHD), and 5,120 x 2,160 (5K2K). Given the horizontally skewed aspect ratio, it has taken a while for ultrawide monitors to hit proper 4K resolution. So far, 5K2K is the only ultrawide resolution that properly encompasses 4K resolution within it, i.e. both height and width. So if you want a monitor that’s both 4K and ultrawide, that’s your only option.
See also: Display specs and terms explained — Resolution, contrast, color gamut, and more
For example, an ultrawide monitor isn’t the best for a console. Consoles don’t support ultrawide resolutions, and you’ll either end up getting a 16:9 output with black bars, or in some cases, maybe even no output at all. Similarly, some PC GPUs can’t output those resolutions either.
Lastly, you may want to consider a curved monitor, especially if you’re getting a bigger screen size. Curvature can be helpful for ultrawide monitors. A nice curvature will mean less scanning from side to side on your part, reducing the strain on your neck.
If you’re still not sure which ultrawide monitor is for you, we’ve rounded up the best ones to make your decision easier.
The best ultrawide monitors to buy
- The Samsung Odyssey G9 Neo is the best overall ultrawide monitor, with a resolution of 5,120 x 1,440, 240Hz refresh rate, and 2,000 nits of peak brightness.
- The LG 29WP60G-B is the best affordable ultrawide monitor you can get, covering all the basics, with a 29-inch panel running at 2,560 x 1,080 resolution at 75Hz.
- The AOC CU34G2X is the best affordable ultrawide gaming monitor, packing in a 144Hz 3,440 x 1,440 resolution panel and a clean design at a reasonable price.
- The Asus ROG Swift PG35VQ is the best premium ultrawide gaming monitor, with a 35-inch 3,440 x 1,440 display running at 200Hz, and full-array local dimming.
- The BenQ PD3420Q is the best color-accurate ultrawide monitor, with 100% Rec.709, 100% sRGB, and 98% DCI-P3 coverage, and factory-calibrated color modes.
- The MSI Prestige PS341WU is the best ultrawide monitor with 5K2K resolution and comes with 98% DCI-P3 coverage.
- The Alienware AW3420DW is the best-looking ultrawide monitor, packing some solid specs in a rather aesthetically pleasing package.
- The LG 49WL95C-WE is the best ultrawide monitor for office use, packing in a resolution of 5,120 x 1,440, combined with only the essential features.
Samsung Odyssey G9 Neo: The best overall ultrawide monitor
The Samsung Odyssey G9 Neo, released in August 2021, is absolutely the best ultrawide monitor you can pick up right now. It has a massive 49-inch size with a resolution of 5,120 x 1,440. The best part? It’s a mini-LED panel, capable of hitting 2,000 nits of peak brightness. The resolution is equivalent to having two 1440p monitors stacked next to each other.
The Samsung Odyssey G9 Neo also packs in an impressive 240Hz refresh rate, and a grey-to-grey response time of 1ms. You get a promised static contrast ratio of 1,000,000:1, with HDR 10+ support. The panel is a TÜV Rheinland-certified 1,000R curved VA panel. The monitor is G-Sync Compatible, and also supports FreeSync Premium Pro. It ticks all the right boxes, and despite the hefty $2,500 price tag, it’s still a great buy for those that want the best ultrawide monitor.
LG 29WP60G-B: The best affordable ultrawide monitor
While there are so many expensive options in this space, an ultrawide monitor doesn’t have to cost a fortune. LG has several options, and the LG 29WP60G-B is our pick for the best affordable ultrawide monitor. It has the basic 2,560 x 1,080 resolution and a 75Hz refresh rate in a 29-inch size. It gets the basics right, while costing only $300.
The panel is IPS and promises an sRGB coverage of 99%. You get HDR10 support, but don’t expect this monitor to perform any miracles in that space. LG has also thrown in USB-C connectivity. To round it off, you get a clean design with the three-side borderless design, which is an added bonus. LG has a lot of ultrawide options available, and this one is a solid pick for those looking to enter the space without spending too much.
AOC CU34G2X: The best affordable ultrawide gaming monitor
Gaming monitors don’t come cheap, especially when they’re ultrawide. However, there are a few reasonably-priced ones here, and our pick for the best affordable ultrawide gaming monitor is the AOC CU34G2X. You get a 34-inch 21:9 screen, running at a resolution of 3,440 x 1,440. The refresh rate goes up to 144Hz, with a 1ms response time
The panel is VA though, and not IPS. However, you do get an impressive color coverage with over 115% sRGB and 98% Adobe RGB. The monitor also has a 1,500R curvature. The design is sleek, with a three-sided bezel-less look, complemented by a classy, yet not flashy, height-adjustable stand. There’s plenty to like about this monitor, and it all comes in while keeping the price around the $460 mark.
Asus ROG Swift PG35VQ: The best premium ultrawide gaming monitor
Ultrawide gaming monitor options are plenty if you’re willing to splurge a little. Asus ROG is a distinguished presence in the space, and if you want a premium option, the Asus ROG Swift PG35VQ is a great pick. You get the same resolution as our affordable pick above — 3,440 x 1,440, at 35 inches. The refresh rate goes up to 200Hz and has a 2ms grey-to-grey response time.
You get a 90% DCI-P3 coverage, and an impressive DisplayHDR 1,000 certification. This monitor boasts full-array local dimming with 512 local dimming zones. G-Sync Ultimate support is present. There’s smart fan control to keep the local dimming thermals in check. Being the best premium ultrawide gaming monitor, you also get a solid amount of RGB and Asus ROG’s Aura Sync software support.
BenQ PD3420Q: The best ultrawide monitor for creators
Ultrawide monitors focused on color accuracy isn’t really a category that has taken off, but there are a couple of options there. Our pick for the best ultrawide monitor for creators is the BenQ PD3420Q, which comes with 100% Rec.709, 100% sRGB, and 98% DCI-P3 coverage.
You get a 34-inch screen, and this is yet another monitor running at the 3,440 x 1,440 resolution. The refresh rate on this is only 60Hz, but that’s understandable, given the focus on creators. You get a lot of color modes with factory calibration. The BenQ PD3420Q also has DisplayHDR 400 certification, as well as USB-C connectivity.
MSI Prestige PS341WU: The best ultrawide monitor with 5K2K resolution
As mentioned in our buying guidelines, 5K2K is the only ultrawide monitor resolution you can find right now that encompasses 4K resolution. So if you want a monitor that goes up to 4K resolution, then the MSI Prestige PS341WU should serve you well. This monitor spans 34 inches, but given the high resolution, the refresh rate is limited to only 60Hz.
This isn’t quite a gaming monitor, since 5K2K resolution is yet to be commonplace for gaming. However, it does pack in some other impressive specifications, like DisplayHDR 600 certification, and 98% DCI-P3 coverage. It also has a clean look, with thin bezels and a white colorway.
Alienware AW3420DW: The best-looking ultrawide gaming monitor
Alienware has a reputation for making some solid gaming hardware, often bundled with a great aesthetic. The Alienware AW3420DW makes it to this list for not only packing some great hardware, but a great design that’s bound to impress. You get a 34-inch display with a resolution of 3,440 x 1,440.
The refresh rate goes up to 120Hz, with a 2ms response time and G-Sync support. There’s also 98% DCI-P3 coverage. The design sports a clean front look that’s free of distraction, while the back gets the flashy bits that still don’t feel overdone. All in all, you can’t go wrong with this monitor, and it manages to impress with form as well as function.
LG 49WL95C-WE: The best ultrawide monitor for office use
Rounding off this list is another LG monitor with a less-than-glorious name. The LG 49WL95C-W is a great pick for office use. You get a great resolution of 5,120 x 1,440 pixels, and the display comes in at a massive 49 inches. That’s the same resolution as our top pick in this list, but this monitor is more of a productivity-focused option and costs about $1,000 less.
The refresh rate is thus limited to 60Hz, but the resolution is enough to make up for that. It boasts USB-C connectivity with 85W power delivery. To round up the package, you have an sRGB coverage of 99%, and HDR10 support. All of this comes packed into the clean design we have come to expect from LG.
Other frequently asked questions
Q: How much does an ultrawide monitor cost?
A: Ultrawide monitors are available at a wide variety of price ranges, starting from around the $200-$250 mark and going all the way up to $2,500 and above. We’ve listed out options across that price band, above.
Q: What’s the difference between 21:9 and 32:9 ultrawide monitors?
A: 21:9 and 32:9 are aspect ratios that note the proportion of the width of a monitor to its height. A 32:9 monitor is thus much wider in comparison to its length, than a 21:9 monitor is.
Q: Should you get an ultrawide monitor over a normal widescreen monitor?
A: If you would like some extra real estate out of your monitor, and aren’t particularly fond of a dual or triple monitor setup, then an ultrawide monitor may be just the thing for you. It depends on your use cases, so make sure to check how particular tasks, like some games, work on ultrawide monitors.