Despite the popularity of 4k with TVs, not everyone wants a 4k monitor. That doesn't necessarily mean you should be stuck with a low-resolution 1080p screen. A resolution of 1440p (also known as Quad-HD) strikes a great balance between 1080p and 4k. For medium-sized screens, 1440p delivers enough pixel density to see more details, but it doesn't require a significantly more powerful computer for decent gaming performance.
We've tested over 60 monitors with a 1440p resolution, and below are our recommendations for the best 1440p monitors available to purchase. Also, check out our recommendations for the best monitors, the best 1440p 144Hz monitors, and the best 1440p gaming monitors.
The best 1440p monitor for gaming that we've tested is the Samsung Odyssey G7. This is an excellent gaming monitor that comes in two sizes, a 27 inch and a 32 inch, so you can choose the one that suits you best. However, keep in mind that although the 32 inch provides more screen space for better game immersion and multitasking, it has the same 1440p resolution, which means that images and text don't look as sharp due to the lower pixel density.
It has an incredibly fast response time and a whopping 240Hz refresh rate to deliver a smooth and responsive gaming experience. Input lag is exceptionally low, and it has FreeSync support and G-SYNC compatibility to reduce screen tearing. It has an optional Black Frame Insertion that can further reduce motion blur; however, it isn't usable while VRR is active. It can deliver a reasonably good HDR experience in games, but it doesn't get bright enough for HDR movies.
Unfortunately, the downside with most VA panels is their poor viewing angles, and that's the case here. Images look washed out when viewed from the side, which isn't ideal for playing co-op games. It has two USB ports for charging, and it also has a Picture-in-Picture mode that lets you display two input signals at once, which can be useful for multitasking. Overall, it's an excellent gaming monitor that most people should be happy with, as long as you don't mind the screen's aggressive curve.
If you need a monitor with wider viewing angles than the Samsung Odyssey G7, then consider the MSI Optix MAG274QRF-QD. It only comes in a 27 inch size, and it has a flat, non-curved screen. It uses an IPS panel with good viewing angles, which means you don't lose image accuracy even if you aren't sitting directly in front of the screen. It has low input lag, exceptional response time, but a lower 165Hz refresh rate. As for HDR, it has outstanding DCI P3 coverage to produce a wide range of colors, but its HDR peak brightness is just okay, not enough to display bright highlights. Ergonomics are great, making it easier to place the screen at a comfortable viewing position, and it has a USB-C port that supports DisplayPort Alt Mode, although it can only deliver 15W of power.
Overall, the Samsung is a better choice because it has a higher refresh rate, and it's also better suited for dark rooms. However, if you want wider viewing angles and don't mind a lower refresh rate, then go with the MSI.
The best 2k monitor with an ultrawide screen that we've tested is the LG 34GN850-B. It's a 34 inch curved monitor with a 21:9 aspect ratio, giving you more horizontal screen space for better immersion and multitasking. It has decent viewing angles so that images don't look washed out from the side, and it provides good visibility in well-lit environments. The stand is sturdy and allows for height and tilt adjustment.
Its color accuracy is great out of the box. It has full sRGB and excellent Adobe RGB coverage, superb gradient handling, and no color bleed, making it a good choice for content creators. Fast motion looks clear and fluid thanks to its exceptional response times and 160Hz refresh rate, and it has both FreeSync support and G-SYNC compatibility to reduce screen tearing. It has a good color gamut and decent peak brightness in HDR, bright enough for some games but not for a true cinematic HDR experience.
Like most IPS panels, it has a low contrast ratio that makes blacks appear gray, so it's not the best choice for gaming in the dark. There are two USB ports for charging and data, although they're on the back of the monitor and hard to access. The backlight is entirely flicker-free at all brightness levels, and there's also a blue light filter to reduce eye strain. Overall, it's a versatile ultrawide monitor that should meet most needs.
If you want a monitor that's better suited for dark room gaming, consider the Gigabyte G34WQC. Unlike the LG 34GN850-B, it has a VA panel with a much higher contrast ratio, allowing it to display deep blacks. It has a great response time and a 144Hz refresh rate, resulting in only a short blur trail behind fast-moving objects. Sadly, there's a drawback to having a VA panel as the viewing angles are significantly worse, which means images look washed out and inaccurate when viewed from the side. It has speakers built-in and a Picture-in-Picture/Picture-by-Picture mode.
Overall, the LG is a better choice because it has faster response time and a higher refresh rate. However, if you want a monitor that's better for dark rooms and don't mind compromising slightly on gaming performance, then go with the Gigabyte.
The best 1440p monitor in the budget category that we've tested is the ASUS ProArt Display PA278QV. It's a 27 inch screen designed for content creators, with enough gaming performance to satisfy casual gamers. It has a good build quality, and its exceptional ergonomics allow you to easily adjust the screen to your optimal viewing position.
It comes with an sRGB mode that's factory-calibrated, offering good out-of-the-box color accuracy. It has near-full coverage of the sRGB color space; however, its Adobe RGB coverage is just decent and might not be good enough for professional photo editing. It has an IPS panel with wide viewing angles and gets bright enough to combat glare under the harshest lighting conditions. It has an impressive response time that results in minimal motion blur and a 75Hz refresh rate that makes motion look slightly smoother than your typical 60Hz panel. To reduce screen tearing, it has native FreeSync support and G-SYNC compatibility.
Its downside is its low contrast ratio, which makes blacks look grayish, especially in a dark environment. Our unit has some backlight bleed, but uniformity issues vary per unit, so your experience might differ. It has four USB 3.0 ports that you can use for charging and an additional feature called 'Quick Fit Virtual Scale', which lets you display an overlay to preview documents in their actual sizes before printing. All in all, this is a well-rounded and versatile monitor that's easy on the wallet.
If you want a monitor that delivers a smoother and more responsive gaming experience, then check out the Gigabyte G27Q. Like the ASUS ProArt Display PA278QV, it's a 27 inch IPS monitor with a 1440p resolution, but it has a much higher refresh rate of 144Hz and quicker response times, resulting in clear and fluid motion. It can display a wide color gamut for HDR and gets decently bright, enough to bring out some highlights. Unfortunately, its ergonomics are significantly worse because it only allows for height and tilt adjustments.
If you mostly use the monitor for work and only game a bit on the side, go with the ASUS because it has better ergonomics and wider viewing angles. However, if you want a better gaming experience, then go with the Gigabyte.
Feb 22, 2021: Replaced ASUS TUF VG27AQ with MSI Optix MAG274QRF-QD, replaced Acer Nitro XV340CK Pbmiipphzx with LG 34GN850-B, replaced Gigabyte G27QC with Gigabyte G27Q.
Jan 05, 2021: Removed ViewSonic Elite XG270QG, Nixeus EDG 34, and Gigabyte G32QC. Added Samsung Odyssey G7, Gigabyte G34WQC, Gigabyte G27QC.
Nov 06, 2020: Replaced the LG 34GN850-B with the Acer Nitro XV340CK.
Sep 08, 2020: Replaced Dell U2520Q with ASUS ProArt Displat PA278QV, replaced LG 27GL83A-B with Gigabyte G32QC.
Jul 10, 2020: Added the ViewSonic XG270QG, LG 34GN850-B, Dell U2520D, and LG 27GL83A-B; removed the ASUS PG279QZ, LG GK950F-B, Dell U2518D, and AOC AG271QX.
Mar 13, 2020: Replaced the Dell U3417W with the Nixeus EDG 34 for Ultrawide Alternative. Added the Dell Alienware AW3420DW as a Notable Mention.
Our recommendations are based on what we think are the best 2k monitors currently available. They're 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 1440p 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.