The MacBook Pro has a great screen, but sometimes, it's just too small. Preferably, you want a monitor that supports USB-C with power delivery, which allows you to connect your MacBook Pro to the display and charge it using a single cable. Additionally, macOS works best with monitors that have a pixel density close to either 110 or 220 PPI. So while our recommendations have the optimal pixel density for the best performance, they don't necessarily have a USB-C port.
Due to numerous complaints of compatibility issues and Dell's unwillingness to offer support to those affected, all Dell monitors have been removed from our list of recommendations for the time being and until the situation is resolved. At this time, we don't test for compatibility; if you run into any issues using a monitor when connected to a MacBook, please let us know in the discussions below.
We've reviewed more than 120 monitors, and below are our recommendations for the best MacBook Pro monitors to purchase. Also, check out our recommendations for the best monitors, the best ultrawide monitors, and the best monitors for Mac Mini. If you're looking for a mouse, see our recommendations for the best mice for MacBook Pro.
The best external monitor for MacBook Pro is the ASUS TUF VG27AQ. It's mainly designed for gaming, and it delivers great overall performance for most uses. It's well-built with amazing ergonomics, allowing you to place it how you like.
It uses an IPS panel that provides wide viewing angles, great for sharing your screen with others. It performs well in most brightly-lit office environments as it gets bright enough to combat glare and has decent reflection handling. It has a flicker-free backlight and some nice extra features like built-in speakers. If you're going to use it for gaming, it has an outstanding response time, a very low input lag, and it has native FreeSync support to reduce screen tearing.
Sadly, it doesn't have a USB hub, so you can't charge your MacBook and display an image from it with a single cable. It's not ideal for photo editors as its coverage of the Adobe RGB color space is a bit limiting, and there's noticeable color bleed when displaying vertical bars of solid colors, which isn't good for photo editing. On the upside, it has excellent gray uniformity, so solid colors across the screen look great. Overall, this is the best monitor for MacBook Pro we've seen.
If you prefer something with a USB hub, check out the LG 27GL850-B. Its ergonomics aren't as good as the ASUS TUF VG27AQ, but it has much better coverage of the Adobe RGB color space, great for photo editing, and it has only very minor vertical color bleed. Like the ASUS, it also gets bright enough to combat glare, it has good reflection handling, and its IPS panel provides wide viewing angles. Sadly, it has a really low contrast ratio, so blacks appear closer to gray when viewed in the dark. On the upside, it's also a great gaming monitor with outstanding response time and really low input lag. Lastly, it also has a flicker-free backlight, which helps reduce eye strain during those long work hours.
Overall, the ASUS is the best display for MacBook Pro that we've tested, but if you're set on getting a monitor with two USB 3.0 ports, then check out the LG.
The best monitor for MacBook Pro with an ultrawide screen is the LG 34GN850-B. It has a 1440p resolution with a 21:9 aspect ratio, offering you enough space to open multiple windows at once. Although it's mainly designed to be for gaming, it offers good overall performance.
It's a good office monitor as its IPS panel provides fairly wide viewing angles. It gets bright enough to combat glare and has decent reflection handling. It's also very good for content creators as it has excellent coverage of the Adobe RGB color space used in photo editing and great coverage of the DCI-P3 color space used in most HDR content. It also has great out-of-the-box color accuracy, so unless your work demands the most accurate colors possible, you won't need to pay extra to get it calibrated.
Sadly, it doesn't have a USB-C input that would optimize the user experience for a MacBook Pro owner. Still, it has two USB 3.0 ports, so you can charge your devices while working. It also has excellent gray uniformity, so solid colors across the screen, such as on a web page, look great. All in all, most people should be happy with this ultrawide.
If you want a super ultrawide alternative with a 5120x1440p resolution, check out the LG 49WL95C-W. It doesn't have any of the gaming perks like the LG 34GN850-B, but if you just need an office monitor for your MacBook Pro, this is a good choice. The 49WL95C-W delivers good picture quality with its IPS panel. It has wide viewing angles, excellent gray uniformity, great reflection handling, and okay peak brightness. It's packed with features like built-in speakers, HDR support, and a Picture-by-Picture mode. It has a USB-C input that supports DisplayPort Alt Mode, allowing you to display an image from a compatible device and charge it at the same time. Unfortunately, it has a low contrast ratio, which is expected from an IPS panel, and it can't display a wide color gamut for HDR content, so it doesn't look all that different from SDR content.
All in all, if you're in the market for the best ultrawide monitor for MacBook Pro, you can't go wrong with the 34GN850-B. However, if you want something even bigger, check out the 49WL95C-W.
The best monitor for MacBook Pro in the budget category is the ASUS ProArt Display PA278QV. It's mainly designed to be an office monitor, and it offers great all-around performance. The 27 inch, 1440p screen helps deliver clear and crisp images, and it's great for multitasking.
It has one of the best stands we've seen. It has an incredibly wide swivel range, so it's really easy to place it in an ideal position. It has an IPS panel with very wide viewing angles, which is great for sharing your screen with others. If you work in a bright environment, it gets bright enough to combat glare and has good reflection handling. The out-of-the-box accuracy is very good, and it has amazing screen uniformity, although these may vary between units. Even though it's limited to a 75HZ panel, it's good for casual gamers as it has a really quick response time and low input lag.
Unfortunately, it doesn't support HDR and has a low contrast ratio, so it's not ideal for watching movies in dark rooms. It has some nice extra features, like built-in speakers and a USB hub. However, it doesn't have a USB-C input. All in all, this is a great option that won't cost you much, making it one of the best monitors for MacBook Pro in the budget category that we've tested.
09/23/2020: Replaced the ViewSonic VX2758-2KP-MHD with the Asus ProArt Display PA278QV.
08/12/2020: Minor text and structure changes; no change in recommendations.
07/10/2020: Replaced the LG 34GK950F-B with the LG 34GN850-B.
05/29/2020: Replaced the LG 27GL83A-B with the LG 27GL850-B.
04/01/2020: Replaced all recommendations, as macOS works best with monitors that have a pixel density around 110 or 220 PPI.
Our recommendations are based on what we think are the best external monitors for a MacBook Pro 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.