When programming or coding for long periods, it's essential to have a comfortable monitor to keep eye-strain to a minimum. It's important to get a monitor that's the right size, with enough screen real estate to comfortably work with multiple windows open without squinting to look at the screen. A flicker-free monitor is also a must, as backlight flicker can cause headaches and eye strain with prolonged periods of use. Many programmers even prefer working with more than one monitor, as you can have your editor open on one and your specifications open on another.
We've reviewed 78 monitors and below are our recommendations for the best monitors for programming to purchase in 2019. See also our recommendations for the best ultrawide monitors, best monitors for dual setup, and our best 34 inch + monitors.
The LG 27UK650-W is the best monitor for coding and programming that we've tested so far. This 27 inch, 4k display delivers clear, sharp text, and is entirely flicker-free, which is essential for longer coding sessions. The stand has a good range of ergonomic adjustments, with a decent height adjustment and good tilt range. It can also rotate to portrait orientation, great for multi-monitor setups, but it can't swivel.
This monitor has passable contrast and adequate black uniformity, so it's an okay choice for programming late at night in a dark room. It has great viewing angles, very good peak brightness, and good reflection handling, so there shouldn't be any issues in a brighter office, either.
Unfortunately, this monitor doesn't have any USB ports on the back, and it doesn't support picture-in-picture or picture-by-picture. Overall, though, it's a great monitor for programming.
If you want something a bit larger than the LG 27UK650-W, check out the LG 32UD99-W instead. This monitor is extremely similar to the small model but has a larger, 32 inch screen. This results in slightly softer text, as they both have the same resolution, but most people won't notice this. Unlike the smaller model, this monitor has a built-in USB hub and a single USB-C port, which supports USB-C power delivery and DisplayPort Alt Mode.
If you work at night most of the time, the LG 32UD59-B is a better choice for a dark room than the LG 27UK650-W. This monitor uses a VA panel, which delivers much deeper blacks thanks to the very good native contrast ratio, and it has decent black uniformity. This is also a larger monitor, but it has the same great 4k resolution, so it's great for multitasking or keeping your editor and specs open on a single display. Unfortunately, this monitor also has a slightly worse stand, as it can't rotate to portrait orientation and it has poor viewing angles.
The Dell U3818DW is the best ultrawide monitor for programming and coding that we've tested so far. The large, 38 inch display and 3840x1600 resolution are great for multitasking. It also has wide viewing angles and looks great out of the box, thanks to the excellent accuracy.
This monitor also has a unique set of connections at the back, allowing you to connect the built-in USB hub to multiple PCs. Combined with the monitor's picture-by-picture mode, this allows you to work on more than one computer at once, which is great if you have two different computers with different configurations or operating systems.
Unfortunately, this monitor isn't as well-suited if you enjoy playing games or watching movies, as there is noticeable motion smearing. It also doesn't look quite as good in a dark room. Overall, though, it's a great office monitor and a very good choice for programming and coding.
If you want something even larger than the Dell U3818DW, check out the Dell U4919DW instead. This massive 49 inch monitor is the ultimate display for multitasking and is roughly equal to two 27 inch, 1440p displays glued together. This is excellent for multitasking, as you can comfortably work with multiple windows open without any issues. With a monitor this size, the stand has very limited adjustments, but it can be VESA mounted. Like the smaller Dell, this monitor has great wide viewing angles but isn't as well-suited for a dark room.
If you want something a bit cheaper than the Dell U3818DW, check out the Dell U3417W instead. This 34 inch monitor delivers very similar performance for office use but has a slightly smaller, lower-resolution screen. This monitor has some great features for programmers, including a DisplayPort output, so you can connect a second monitor with only a single cable going back to your computer. Like the larger model, it's a versatile choice for programming, with wide viewing angles, an adjustable stand, and great peak brightness. Unfortunately, also like the larger model, it doesn't look as good in a dark room.
The Dell U2415 is the best compact monitor for coding and programming that we've tested so far. The smaller size is great for limited spaces, or if you prefer to work with multiple small monitors rather than one large one. This 24 inch monitor has a 1200p resolution, which is decent, but isn't ideal for multitasking. The stand has great ergonomics and can easily be adjusted to an ideal viewing position.
This monitor has decent peak brightness and good reflection handling, so there shouldn't be any issues using it in a fairly bright room, as long as there aren't too many windows. It also has great wide viewing angles, which is great for a multi-monitor setup.
Unfortunately, like the majority of IPS monitors, it doesn't look as good in a dark room. Overall, though, it's a good monitor for programming and coding.
If you want something with a higher native resolution than the Dell U2415, check out the Dell U2518D. With a slightly larger, 1440p screen, this monitor delivers a more comfortable multitasking experience, and also delivers much better picture quality than the smaller model. Although not technically flicker-free, it has a very high flicker-frequency that shouldn't bother most people.
Our recommendations are based on what we think are the best monitors for coding and programming that are 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.