The desire to reach new levels of productivity has led to the advent of a new class of monitor: ultrawide. These large, widescreen monitors offer the ultimate in office productivity, allowing you to place two or more full-screen windows side-by-side without the need for a multi-monitor setup. These ultrawide monitors have become popular with gamers as well, as they deliver a more immersive gaming experience. Like anything else, ultrawide monitors aren't all created equal.
We've reviewed more than 100 monitors so far and below are our recommendations for the best ultrawide monitors to buy. See our recommendations for the best large monitors, the best monitors for photo editing, the best monitors for coding, and the best ultrawide gaming monitors.
The best ultrawide monitor we've tested so far is the Dell U3818DW. It's a good overall monitor that performs best as an office monitor, mainly due to its large size. Its unique 3840x1600 resolution is bigger than most ultrawide monitors and allows you to easily multitask or watch 4k content.
This monitor uses an IPS panel, so naturally, the viewing angles are good and you can easily share your screen with others. This is a direct trade-off for its contrast ratio, which is mediocre and blacks appear gray when viewed in the dark. It has outstanding out-of-box color accuracy and you won't have it to get it calibrated, and the gray uniformity is also impressive, so areas of uniform colors, such as on a web page, look great. Although it's not designed to be a gaming monitor, it still has great motion handling and a low input lag, and the large screen delivers an immersive gaming experience.
Unfortunately, it doesn't support HDR and it doesn't get very bright. However, it has very good reflection handling, so it still performs well in rooms with a moderate amount of light, like most office environments, making this the best ultrawide monitor we've tested so far.
If you prefer having an even wider monitor, then check out the 49 inch Samsung C49RG9/CRG9. It doesn't have good viewing angles like the Dell U3818DW, but the massive 32:9 aspect ratio and 5120x1440 resolution allows for plenty of screen real estate to work with. The VA panel gives it a decent contrast ratio with a local dimming feature that further deepens any blacks. It has an excellent SDR color gamut with great coverage of the Adobe RGB color space used in photo editing, and it supports a wide color gamut for HDR content. Unfortunately, the stand doesn't allow for a wide range of tilt or swivel adjustments, but on the upside, this monitor can get bright enough to combat glare in most office environments.
If you're looking for the best ultrawide monitor, look into the Dell, but if you want an even bigger screen, consider the Samsung.
The best ultrawide G-SYNC gaming monitor we've tested so far is the Dell Alienware AW3418DW/1900R. This is an IPS monitor with a curved screen, wide viewing angles, and an excellent build quality that feels very sturdy.
This monitor has a 100Hz refresh rate that can be overclocked to 120Hz, and it has native G-SYNC support to reduce screen tearing. Images look detailed thanks to its 1440p resolution and its fast response time results in very little blur trail in fast-moving scenes. There are four USB 3.0 ports on this monitor to plug in other peripherals or to charge your mobile devices. There are also some extra features that can be useful for some, such as a frame rate counter overlay and a display alignment tool to help with multi-monitor setups.
Like most IPS panels, this monitor's contrast ratio is low and it has poor black uniformity, which is disappointing for those who like to game in the dark. However, it does have great reflection handling and it can get bright enough to fight glare in most well-lit rooms. It has decent color accuracy out of the box, but unfortunately, it doesn't support HDR. Overall, this is the best ultrawide G-SYNC gaming monitor we've tested so far.
If you're looking for a G-SYNC monitor with better dark room performance, the Acer Predator Z35P is a good choice. Besides not having the good viewing angles found on the Dell Alienware AW3418DW/1900R, its motion handling is also worse, but fast-moving objects still look good. It's able to produce deeper blacks with its VA panel, it has more accurate out-of-box colors, and it has a slightly better SDR color gamut and color volume. It also has built-in speakers and good gaming features, like three types of crosshairs that can be added and a dark boost to see others hiding in shadows. Like the Dell, the Acer doesn't support HDR.
If you're looking for the best G-SYNC ultrawide gaming monitor, then look into the Dell, but if you want something with a VA panel for better dark-room performance, check out the Acer.
The LG 34GK950F-B is the best FreeSync ultrawide gaming monitor that we've tested so far. It has all the features of a great gaming monitor without the price premium of a G-SYNC variant. Its excellent motion handling, excellent response time, outstanding low input lag, and optional black frame insertion contribute to a great gaming experience where fast-moving objects are clear with minimal blur.
Like most IPS monitors, viewing angles are good, which is great for co-op gaming or if you like to sit close to the monitor. It has very good peak brightness and great reflection handling, so glare in a bright room shouldn't be an issue. HDR support is also present but doesn't improve the image quality all that much. LG also provides a decent selection of ports, including a DisplayPort, two HDMI ports, and a USB 3.0 hub.
Unfortunately, this monitor isn't a great choice for gaming in a dark room. The low contrast ratio causes blacks to look gray, and it has bad black uniformity. Overall, this is a great gaming monitor and is the best FreeSync ultrawide gaming monitor we've seen so far.
If you find the LG 34GK950F-B too expensive, consider the LG 34UC79G-B. Despite the cheaper price, this monitor still delivers a great overall gaming experience, with excellent motion handling and outstanding low input lag. It also supports FreeSync for a nearly tear-free gaming experience. It has a lower native resolution than the other LG, though, as well as slightly worse reflection handling.
Overall, the 34GK950F-B is the best ultrawide FreeSync gaming monitor we've tested so far, but if you want something cheaper and don't mind compromising on reflection handling, the 34UC79G-B is a great alternative.
05/08/2020: Updated text for clarity; no changes to picks.
03/13/2020: Added Philips Momentum and Samsung CHG90 to notable mentions.
Our recommendations are based on what we think are the best widescreen monitors currently available. They are adapted to be valid for most people, in each price range. Rating is based on our review, factoring in price and feedback from our visitors.
If you would prefer to make your own decision, here is the list of all of our ultrawide monitor reviews. 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.