Although HDR is extremely common on TVs, it's just starting to gain popularity on monitors and, unfortunately, most monitors are a few years behind TVs when it comes to HDR performance. Despite this, there are a few monitors that deliver a decent HDR gaming experience. As more and more games support HDR, we expect the demand for good HDR monitors to increase drastically over the next few years.
We've reviewed more than 80 monitors, and below you'll find our recommendations for the best HDR gaming monitors for a variety of needs and budgets. For the best console gaming monitors, see our articles about the best gaming monitors for PS4 and the best gaming monitors for Xbox One. See also our recommendations for the best curved gaming monitors and the best gaming monitors.
The Philips Momentum 436M6VBPAB is the best HDR gaming monitor we've tested so far. It delivers decent picture quality, has great motion handling, and has excellent low input lag. It has an outstanding contrast ratio, so it delivers deep blacks with decent uniformity. It's also extremely bright, and small highlights in some HDR scenes stand out.
This monitor delivers very good gaming performance thanks to the extremely fast response time, low input lag, and support for AMD's FreeSync variable refresh rate technology. It's limited to a 60Hz refresh rate, though, which may disappoint some people.
Unfortunately, this monitor has bad viewing angles and is best enjoyed from directly in front at a comfortable viewing distance. It does have a local dimming feature, but unfortunately, it's bad and doesn't improve the image.
If you have an NVIDIA graphics card, the Acer Predator X27 is the best G-SYNC alternative to the Philips 436M6VBPAB that we've tested so far. HDR looks incredible on this monitor, thanks to the incredible HDR peak brightness and a great wide color gamut. This monitor also has impressive motion handling, a fast response time, and an excellent 120Hz refresh rate. Unfortunately, it has a higher-than-usual input lag, and it has a low contrast ratio, so it doesn't look as good in a dark room. Overall, though, it's a versatile G-SYNC monitor that's great for almost any use.
If you want the absolute best HDR gaming monitor, get the Philips; otherwise, if G-SYNC is important and you don't mind compromising on input lag and contrast ratio, the Acer is a good choice.
The Samsung C27HG70 is the best 1440p HDR gaming monitor that we've tested so far. This 27 inch, 1440p monitor delivers an excellent gaming experience and has decent HDR performance. It has a high contrast ratio, decent peak brightness in HDR, and it can display a wide color gamut.
This monitor has excellent motion handling with an extremely fast response time, flicker-free backlight, and a fast response time. It supports AMD's FreeSync variable refresh rate technology, which is great for Xbox One gamers or PC gamers with an AMD card or recent NVIDIA card. This monitor also has outstanding low input lag, so you can respond almost instantly to the action onscreen.
Unfortunately, although its VA panel is great for a dark room, the image degrades when viewed at an angle, which isn't ideal for co-op gaming. Overall, though, this is a decent HDR gaming monitor with excellent gaming performance that should please even the most competitive gamers. This monitor is also available in a 32" size, which we expect to perform similarly to the 27" one we've tested.
If you find the viewing angles of the Samsung CHG70 lacking, then get the Gigabyte Aorus AD27QD. The Aorus is the best IPS 1440p monitor for HDR gaming. You won't get the great reflection handling found on the Samsung, though this monitor delivers a brighter image than the Samsung. Gaming on the Gigabyte Aorus is an exceptional experience thanks to the low input lag and excellent response time. Due to their design, IPS monitors favor wide viewing angles at the expense of contrast ratio. This makes blacks in a dark room not black, but more like gray. This, along with the lack of local dimming feature, limit the effectiveness of HDR.
So if viewing angles are of the essence, the Gigabyte Aorus is the best option; otherwise, if HDR performance is more important, then the Samsung will deliver a better overall HDR gaming experience provided you sit straight in front of it.
If you're looking for an HDR gaming monitor that won't break the bank, then check out the Dell U2518D. It's the best budget HDR gaming monitor we've tested so far. It has a 25" IPS panel that delivers good overall picture quality with decent viewing angles. The monitor has a great stand that makes it easy to adjust to a comfortable position, and most casual gamers will be happy with the monitor's performance. The low input lag makes it fairly responsive to your actions and the fast response time ensures crisp motion. Unfortunately, there is no support for any advanced gaming features like FreeSync, which might deter the most competitive gamers who might also find the input lag high.
Although the monitor supports HDR, it doesn't have a wide color gamut and it's unlikely that you'll notice much improvement using it in this mode. Some games, however, do look slightly more realistic in HDR than in SDR, provided you make the right adjustments and change the proper gaming settings.
Overall, the Dell is a good monitor with acceptable HDR gaming performance that will also save you some cash.
Our recommendations are based on what we think are the best HDR gaming 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 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.
10/10/2019: Only minor updates to the text and verification for accuracy; no changes in product picks.