Whether you're a professional in the print and marketing industry or an amateur photographer and need a monitor for content creation, you'll want something to give you the best opportunity to do your job well. While you can use any monitor for photo editing, some monitors have a dedicated sRGB mode so that colors aren't oversaturated when using the sRGB color space. There are a few other things you'll want to look for in a monitor for photo editing, like pixel density, connectivity, peak brightness, and ergonomics to improve your workflow.
We've bought and tested more than 270 monitors, and below are our picks for the best monitors for photography available for purchase. See our recommendations for the best 4k monitors, the best ultrawide monitors, and the best work monitors. If you need more than just a monitor, then also check out the best laptops for photo editing, and the best cameras for photography.
The best monitor to use for photo editing that we've tested is the Dell U3223QE. It's a 4k monitor that's designed with content creators in mind, and it's excellent for this use. It has a dedicated sRGB mode, limiting the colors to the standard sRGB space used in most web content, resulting in remarkable color accuracy, meaning you won't have to get it calibrated unless you need perfect colors. The 4k resolution is great for editing because it lets you see more detail at once, and the 32-inch screen is big enough to view multiple windows simultaneously.
Connecting to it is also easy as it has a massive USB hub with five USB-A ports and three USB-C ports. One of the USB-C ports supports DisplayPort Alt Mode with 90W of power delivery, so you can display an image from a power-hungry laptop and charge it using a single cable. If you tend to work in a bright room, it easily gets bright enough to fight glare, but it has disappointing reflection handling, so it's best to avoid placing it opposite a window with direct sunlight.
If you do your photo editing with a Mac computer, consider the Apple Studio Display. It's different in a few ways from the Dell U3223QE because it has a smaller screen and an even higher 5k resolution that results in sharper images and text. It doesn't support HDR like the Dell, but as photo editing in HDR is still rare, that doesn't make much of a difference. The main advantage of using this monitor with Mac computers is that it's specifically designed for macOS and has features you can only take advantage of with that operating system.
One of those features is its dedicated sRGB mode that results in exceptional accuracy before calibration, and you won't even need to calibrate it for the most accurate image. It also displays a wide range of colors in SDR for a realistic and life-like image. Its wide viewing angles are great if you often need to share the screen with a coworker or client. However, even if you can get the monitor in variants with different stands, neither stand offers swivel adjustments, so it isn't the easiest to adjust.
If you don't edit photos with a Mac computer and find the Dell U3223QE and the Apple Studio Display too expensive, check out the Dell U2723QE. It has the same 27-inch screen size as the Apple monitor, so with a lower 4k resolution, images aren't as sharp, but the text clarity is still fantastic. Besides that, it's an excellent monitor for content creation as it has amazing color accuracy in the sRGB picture mode. It also displays a wide range of colors in the Adobe RGB color space, which is important if your work requires that space.
It has many of the same features as the U3223QE, as it's essentially a smaller variant. The U2723QE has the same massive USB hub with five USB-A ports and three USB-C ports, making it easy to connect to any type of device. It has a KVM switch that lets you easily control two devices with the same keyboard and mouse connected to the computer. With its Picture-in-Picture and Picture-by-Picture modes, you can also view images from those two sources simultaneously, which is great for multitasking.
If you want something in the lower mid-range price category, you can still get impressive performance as long as you're willing to make some sacrifices. That's the case of the Dell S2722QC, which is a step down in terms of price and performance from the Dell U2723QE because it doesn't have a dedicated sRGB picture mode, meaning it has worse accuracy before calibration, but that's what you have to expect for getting something cheaper. That said, the accuracy is still decent without any calibration. It also has a smaller USB hub with only two USB-A ports and a single USB-C port, which still supports DisplayPort Alt Mode with 65W of power delivery to charge your laptop.
It's a great choice if you need to use your monitor in a bright room because it has great peak brightness, enough to fight glare, and the reflection handling is even better than the U2723QE. It has wide viewing angles if you need to share your work with someone next to you. Lastly, the excellent ergonomics make it easy to adjust the screen in different ways, like if you need to share your screen with a coworker or client.
If you're looking for something on a budget, consider the ASUS ProArt Display PA278CV. As you go down in price categories, there are some trade-offs between monitors, and the main trade-off is that it has a lower 1440p resolution than the Dell S2722QC. This means that images aren't sharp, but if you don't like the fine text clarity of 4k monitors, it's also good to consider a 1440p display like this one. It's designed with photo editing in mind as it's very good for this use, and unlike the Dell, it has a dedicated sRGB mode. This results in remarkable accuracy without any calibration, and this monitor also displays a wide range of colors.
It has great peak brightness in SDR and decent reflection handling, which helps make it a good choice to use in a well-lit environment. It has a few extra features to improve productivity, like its USB hub, which includes a USB-C port. It supports DisplayPort Alt Mode with 65W of power delivery, making it easy to connect your photo editing laptop and charge it simultaneously.
Apr 21, 2023: Moved the LG 40WP95C-W to Notable Mentions because the article focuses more on photo editing; added the Apple Studio Display as 'Best For Mac'; replaced the Dell S2721QS with the ASUS ProArt Display PA278CV to give a 1440p option.
Feb 20, 2023: Replaced the Gigabyte M32U with the Dell U2723QE because it's better overall and renamed it as the 'Best Mid-Range Monitor'; renamed the Dell S2722QC as the 'Best Lower Mid-Range Monitor' to reflect its price and performance; updated Notable Mentions based on changes.
Dec 22, 2022: Replaced the Dell U2723QE with the Dell U3223QE as it has better color accuracy; replaced the Acer Nitro XV272U with the Dell S2721QS because it's easier to find; added the Gigabyte M32U and the LG 40WP95C-W and removed the Apple Studio Display and the Acer Nitro XF243Y to reflect market availability; updated Notable Mentions based on changes.
Oct 21, 2022: Replaced the ASUS ProArt Display PA278QV with the Acer Nitro XV272U KVbmiiprzx because it's better overall and supports HDR; moved the LG 40WP95C-W to Notable Mentions because it's expensive and doesn't perform better than the Dell U2723QE; updated Notable Mentions based on changes.
Aug 02, 2022: Restructured article to reflect user needs for photo editing; added the Dell U2723QE as the 'Best Monitor' and renamed the Dell S2722QC as the 'Best Mid-Range'. Replaced the Gigabyte PA278QV with the ASUS PA278QV because it's easier to find and added the Acer XF243Y as the 'Best Cheap' monitor; replaced the Gigabyte M34WQ with the LG 40WP95C-W because it has better accuracy.
Our recommendations are based on what we think are the best monitors for photography and other types of media creation 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.