In the past few years, as 4k TVs have improved, HDR support has become the norm. For monitors, on the other hand, the situation is quite different, and HDR is still relatively new. Few monitors support it, and even fewer monitors support it properly and can display HDR content the way it's meant to be seen. If you're looking for a new monitor, though, and HDR is important to you, then there are still a few choices out there. Although the majority of them have low native contrast and can't get as bright as TVs, they still offer a different experience from monitors that only support SDR.
We've reviewed 10 4k HDR monitors, and below you'll find our recommendations for the best ones that are available for purchase. See our recommendations for the best 4k monitors, the best 4k gaming monitors, and the best HDR TVs.
The best 4k HDR monitor that we've tested so far is the Acer Predator X27. It's one of the few monitors that can get bright enough to deliver a great HDR experience. It has a 27 inch IPS panel with wide viewing angles, a 144Hz refresh rate, and native G-SYNC support to reduce screen tearing when gaming. Its build quality is impressive, but the stand doesn't allow for rotation into portrait mode and cable management is pretty minimal.
Unfortunately, like most IPS monitors, it has a sub-par contrast ratio and bad black uniformity, which isn't ideal for dark room viewing. Additionally, its full-array local dimming performs rather poorly, as there's significant clouding and blooming around bright objects in dark scenes. On the bright side, it has a 10-bit panel with remarkable gradient performance, and it has an outstanding color gamut, covering nearly the entire Adobe RGB color space.
Response time on this monitor is excellent and its input lag is low, although it's slightly higher if you game at 60Hz. There are four USB 3.0 ports for charging and it comes with integrated speakers if you don't have dedicated ones. Overall, if you're looking for the best HDR experience, this is the one to get.
If you're looking for a monitor with better dark room performance than the Acer Predator X27, then check out the BenQ EW3270U. It has a 32 inch VA panel with a good contrast ratio and decent black uniformity, so blacks look deep when viewed in the dark. It has a lower 60Hz refresh rate and its response time is good, with only some faint ghosting in fast-moving scenes. For gamers, it has a low input lag and native FreeSync support, although it's compatible with NVIDIA's G-SYNC as well. The main downside with this monitor is its peak brightness, which is enough to fight glare but won't be able to bring out bright highlights in HDR content. Also, its viewing angles are just okay, so images can appear a bit washed out when viewed from the side.
Overall, the Acer offers a much better HDR experience due to its high peak brightness, but if you tend to watch in a dark room, then the BenQ is a better choice.
If you want the best HDR gaming experience, check out the Philips Momentum 436M6VBPAB, the best 4k HDR monitor for gaming that we've tested so far. This 43 inch monitor delivers a good HDR experience, with deep, uniform blacks and a great wide HDR color gamut. It also has outstanding peak brightness in HDR, which is even brighter even than most TVs currently on the market.
This monitor also has very good gaming performance. It has an outstanding response time, the fastest of any 60Hz monitor we've tested so far, resulting in exceptionally clear motion, with very little blur behind fast-moving objects. It also has outstanding low input lag for a responsive gaming experience, and it supports FreeSync for nearly tear-free gaming from a supported graphics card or new Xbox One.
Unfortunately, this monitor has disappointing viewing angles, and it isn't the best for desktop use. Overall, it's a very good monitor for HDR gaming and is especially well-suited for console gaming if you want the performance of a high-end TV in a smaller form-factor.
If you find the Philips Momentum 43M6VBPAB a little too big, then check out the LG 32UD99-W. This 32-inch monitor uses an IPS panel that has much wider viewing angles, which is great for co-op gaming or for sharing content. Unfortunately, although its contrast ratio is quite good for an IPS panel, it's still significantly lower than the Philips', so it isn't as well-suited for dark rooms. It gets bright enough to fight glare; however, it's best to avoid having light shining directly on the screen, as it doesn't handle reflections all that well. Response time is good and it supports FreeSync variable refresh rate technology to reduce screen tearing when gaming. The monitor's HDR performance is limited by its peak brightness, but the overall experience is pretty decent, especially if you're viewing in a darker environment. It also has a Picture-by-Picture mode, as well as a USB-C port that supports DisplayPort Alt Mode.
Overall, the Philips is a better monitor for gaming in HDR, as it can get brighter and it has a wider HDR color gamut; however, if you find it too big, the LG is a good alternative.
The best budget 4k HDR monitor we've tested so far is the BenQ EL2870U. It's not the most stylish monitor around with its thick bezels, but it performs pretty decently overall. It has a 28-inch TN panel with a 60Hz refresh rate, it supports FreeSync natively, and it's compatible with NVIDIA's G-SYNC as well. Its build quality is good and there are no obvious issues with the construction, but unfortunately, the stand has bad ergonomics, as it only allows for tilt adjustment and the range is quite narrow. It can be VESA mounted, though, which is recommended if you want to be able to adjust the monitor to your optimal viewing position.
One of the downsides of TN panels is their poor contrast ratio, and it's definitely the case here. Blacks look grayish and there's no local dimming to improve the contrast. There's also a lot of backlight bleed and clouding throughout the screen, making this monitor a poor choice for dark room viewing. Color accuracy is great out of the box and it has outstanding coverage of the sRGB color space. Sadly, while this monitor supports HDR, it can't display a wide color gamut and it has a low peak brightness, so HDR content doesn't look much different from SDR content.
Response time is good, but there's a significant amount of overshoot, causing the appearance of artifacts in some scenes. This monitor is best used in a moderately-lit room, as its peak brightness isn't high enough to fight glare in bright lighting conditions. And like most TN monitors, its viewing angles are mediocre, which isn't ideal if you want to share content with a friend or play co-op games. On the bright side, its high resolution and large screen size are great for productivity tasks, it has a flicker-free backlight, and it comes with integrated speakers in case you don't have any dedicated ones.
06/22/2020: Minor text and structure changes, no change in recommendations.
10/24/2019: Updated the text for accuracy and added the Philips Momentum 436M6VBPAB as the best HDR gaming monitor.
Our recommendations are based on what we think are the best 4k monitors that support HDR. They are adapted to be valid for most people. Rating is based on our review, factoring in price and feedback from our visitors.
If you would prefer the make your own decision, here is the list of all of our 4k HDR monitors. Be careful not to get too caught up in the details. Most monitors are good enough to please most people, and the things we fault monitors on are often not noticeable unless you really look for them.