Dell U2718Q Monitor Review

Tested using Methodology v1.1
Updated Apr 14, 2020 at 11:28 am
Dell U2718Q Picture
7.7
Mixed Usage
8.1
Office
7.5
Gaming
7.7
Multimedia
8.0
Media Creation
6.6
HDR Gaming
Size 27"
Resolution 3840x2160
Max Refresh Rate
60 Hz
LCD Type
IPS
Variable Refresh Rate
No VRR

The Dell U2718Q is a very good 4k IPS monitor. Like most Dell monitors, it has outstanding ergonomics, so it's easy to adjust it to an ideal viewing position. It has decent accuracy out of the box and wide viewing angles, great for media creation or for sharing the screen with someone else. Areas of similar color look amazing, with no noticeable banding in gradients. Unfortunately, although it supports HDR, this doesn't add very much, as it can't display a wide color gamut and it has a low contrast ratio, so blacks look gray in a dark room.

Our Verdict

7.7 Mixed Usage

The Dell U2718Q is a good monitor for most uses. It has wide viewing angles and excellent ergonomics, great for use as an office monitor. It's a good basic gaming monitor, but it probably won't please most serious gamers. The high-resolution screen is also great for media creation or watching videos.

Pros
  • Wide viewing angles.
  • Easy to adjust stand with great ergonomics.
  • Outstanding gradient handling.
Cons
  • Poor HDR performance.
  • Mediocre black uniformity and visible backlight bleed.
8.1 Office

This is a great office monitor. The Dell U2718Q has wide viewing angles, excellent ergonomics, and a great amount of screen real estate. Text is exceptionally clear, and it has excellent uniformity. Although it can get bright enough for most viewing environments, it has mediocre reflection handling, so glare might be an issue in a bright room.

7.5 Gaming

Overall, the Dell U2718Q is a good gaming monitor, but it likely won't please serious gamers. It has low input lag and good response time, resulting in little blur behind fast-moving objects. Unfortunately, it's limited to a 60Hz refresh rate and it doesn't support any advanced gaming features.

7.7 Multimedia

The Dell U2718Q is a good monitor for multimedia. The high-resolution screen is great for watching the latest movies in 4k, and the wide viewing angles are great for watching the latest videos with a group of friends. Unfortunately, it has mediocre reflection handling, so glare might be an issue in a bright room.

8.0 Media Creation

The Dell U2718Q is a great monitor for media creation. The high-resolution screen allows you to see more of your work at once, and it has outstanding ergonomics and wide viewing angles. It also has excellent uniformity, decent accuracy out of the box, and outstanding gradient handling. Unfortunately, it has mediocre reflection handling, so glare might be an issue in a bright room.

6.6 HDR Gaming

Overall, the Dell U2718Q is a decent monitor for HDR gaming, thanks to the low input lag and good response time. Although this monitor technically supports HDR, there's little benefit to it, as it can't get very bright in HDR, can't display a wide color gamut, and it has a low contrast ratio.

  • 7.7 Mixed Usage
  • 8.1 Office
  • 7.5 Gaming
  • 7.7 Multimedia
  • 8.0 Media Creation
  • 6.6 HDR Gaming
  1. Update 6/11/2020: We corrected a minor mistake in the Refresh Rate scoring.
  2. Update 2/17/2020: Converted to Test Bench 1.1.

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Video

Test Results

Design
Design
Style
Curved No
Curve Radius Not Curved
Weight (without stand)
18.1 lbs (8.2 kg)
Weight (with stand)
30.4 lbs (13.8 kg)

The Dell U2718Q has a simple design, with very slim bezels on all four sides. The stand is simple, supports the monitor well with little wobble, and has excellent ergonomics.

Design
Stand
Width
11.5" (29.2 cm)
Depth
7.9" (20.1 cm)

The stand is very similar to the entire Dell lineup. It supports the monitor well, and despite the relatively large footprint, the base can still be used for other things as it's flat.

8.6
Design
Ergonomics
Height Adjustment
5.1" (13.0 cm)
Switch Portrait/Landscape Yes, Both Ways
Swivel Range -45° to 45°
Tilt Range -20° to 5°

Like most Dells, this monitor has outstanding ergonomics, making it very easy to place it in the ideal viewing position.

Design
Back
Wall Mount VESA 100x100

The back of the monitor is clean smooth, very similar to all other Dell monitors. There's a single hole in the bottom of the stand for cable management.

Design
Borders
Borders
0.3" (0.8 cm)

The borders are slim and blend well with the screen. This is ideal for multi-monitor setups as there'll be little gap between the monitors.

Design
Thickness
Thickness (with stand)
5.8" (14.7 cm)
Thickness (without stand)
1.8" (4.6 cm)

The back of the monitor is of fairly uniform thickness and doesn't stick out much when VESA-mounted.

7.5
Design
Build Quality

Like most Dell monitors, the U2718Q has good build quality. The stand adjustments flow well and don't need to be forced. The monitor is mostly made of plastic, but the parts fit well and there are very few gaps.

Picture Quality
6.5
Picture Quality
Contrast
Native Contrast
1317 : 1
Contrast With Local Dimming
N/A

Like most IPS monitors, the contrast ratio is low, resulting in blacks that look gray in a dark room.

0
Picture Quality
Local Dimming
Local Dimming
No
Backlight
Direct

This monitor doesn't support local dimming. The video is provided for reference only.

7.7
Picture Quality
SDR Peak Brightness
SDR Real Scene
304 cd/m²
SDR Peak 2% Window
334 cd/m²
SDR Peak 10% Window
335 cd/m²
SDR Peak 25% Window
335 cd/m²
SDR Peak 50% Window
335 cd/m²
SDR Peak 100% Window
335 cd/m²
SDR Sustained 2% Window
334 cd/m²
SDR Sustained 10% Window
334 cd/m²
SDR Sustained 25% Window
335 cd/m²
SDR Sustained 50% Window
335 cd/m²
SDR Sustained 100% Window
335 cd/m²
SDR ABL
0.000

Good peak brightness levels with negligible variation depending on content. The monitor is bright enough for most rooms, but it can't overcome direct glare.

6.2
Picture Quality
HDR Peak Brightness
HDR Real Scene
329 cd/m²
HDR Peak 2% Window
266 cd/m²
HDR Peak 10% Window
341 cd/m²
HDR Peak 25% Window
346 cd/m²
HDR Peak 50% Window
369 cd/m²
HDR Peak 100% Window
383 cd/m²
HDR Sustained 2% Window
194 cd/m²
HDR Sustained 10% Window
211 cd/m²
HDR Sustained 25% Window
223 cd/m²
HDR Sustained 50% Window
230 cd/m²
HDR Sustained 100% Window
239 cd/m²
HDR ABL
0.013

Mediocre HDR peak brightness. Real scene performance is slightly brighter than in SDR and the U2718Q performs well in most rooms. The brightness varied greatly during our testing, as the monitor appeared to boost the brightness of certain windows but then drop off the brightness after some time (see here). The posted results represent the most consistent results we could achieve (see here).

HDR is only supported when connected via HDMI.

If you want a monitor that has a higher HDR peak brightness, check out the Dell U2720Q, which is the successor of this monitor.

7.9
Picture Quality
Horizontal Viewing Angle
Color Washout From Left
40 °
Color Washout From Right
42 °
Color Shift From Left
50 °
Color Shift From Right
54 °
Brightness Loss From Left
44 °
Brightness Loss From Right
47 °
Black Level Raise From Left
70 °
Black Level Raise From Right
70 °
Gamma Shift From Left
42 °
Gamma Shift From Right
45 °

The Dell U2718Q has very good horizontal viewing angles. This makes it a great choice if you often share the screen with someone else, or if you like to sit close.

7.4
Picture Quality
Vertical Viewing Angle
Color Washout From Below
33 °
Color Washout From Above
33 °
Color Shift From Below
46 °
Color Shift From Above
49 °
Brightness Loss From Below
36 °
Brightness Loss From Above
36 °
Black Level Raise From Below
70 °
Black Level Raise From Above
70 °
Gamma Shift From Below
43 °
Gamma Shift From Above
43 °

Decent vertical viewing angles. Someone looking at the monitor from above might notice a slight decrease in brightness but shouldn't notice much else.

8.5
Picture Quality
Gray Uniformity
50% Std. Dev.
3.479 %
50% DSE
0.116 %
5% Std. Dev.
0.378 %
5% DSE
0.034 %

The Dell Ultrasharp U2718Q has excellent gray uniformity, with very little dirty screen effect, but the edges of the screen are noticeably darker than the rest. Sports fans shouldn't notice any issues when streaming games online, and there won't be any darker areas when browsing websites with large white areas.

6.1
Picture Quality
Black Uniformity
Native Std. Dev.
1.911 %
Std. Dev. w/ L.D.
N/A

Mediocre black uniformity, but better than most monitors we've tested. There's clouding across the entire screen, and the LED backlights bleed along the bottom edge, which can be distracting in a dark room.

7.3
Picture Quality
Pre Calibration
Picture Mode
Standard
Luminance
284 cd/m²
Luminance Settings
75
Contrast Setting
75
RGB Controls
100-100-100
Gamma Setting
No Gamma Setting
Color Temperature
6068 K
White Balance dE
3.53
Color dE
2.83
Gamma
2.21

Decent out-of-the-box accuracy. The white balance is off a bit, causing some noticeable inaccuracies in brighter shades of gray. Most colors are displayed accurately, and gamma almost follows the sRGB target curve, but some scenes are darker than they should be.

9.6
Picture Quality
Post Calibration
Picture Mode
Custom Color
Luminance
101 cd/m²
Luminance Settings
22
Contrast Setting
75
RGB Controls
91-98-100
Gamma Setting
No Gamma Setting
Color Temperature
6494 K
White Balance dE
0.56
Color dE
0.56
Gamma
2.19

After calibration, the Dell Ultrasharp U2718Q has outstanding accuracy. Any remaining inaccuracies aren't noticeable, and gamma follows the sRGB color space almost perfectly.

You can download our ICC profile calibration here. This is provided for reference only and shouldn't be used, as the calibration values vary per individual unit even for the same model, due to manufacturing tolerances.

8.7
Picture Quality
SDR Color Gamut
sRGB xy
97.3 %
Adobe RGB xy
75.8 %
sRGB Picture Mode
Custom Color
Adobe RGB Picture Mode
Custom Color

Excellent coverage of the standard sRGB color space. Limited coverage of the wider Adobe RGB color space, which may be disappointing to professional users for editing graphics or print media.

9.1
Picture Quality
SDR Color Volume
sRGB In ICtCp
98.2 %
Adobe RGB In ICtCp
82.8 %
sRGB Picture Mode
Custom Color
Adobe RGB Picture Mode
Custom Color

The Dell Ultrasharp U2718Q has excellent color volume in SDR. Adobe RGB coverage is limited by the poor color space coverage and isn't as good as other HDR monitors we've tested, like the Samsung CHG70.

6.6
Picture Quality
HDR Color Gamut
Wide Color Gamut
No
DCI P3 xy
74.9 %
Rec. 2020 xy
57.3 %
DCI P3 Picture Mode
Custom Color
Rec. 2020 Picture Mode
Custom Color

Decent HDR color gamut, but it can't display a wide color gamut. Note that HDR is only supported over HDMI on this monitor.

5.2
Picture Quality
HDR Color Volume
DCI-P3 In ICtCp
62.1 %
Rec. 2020 In ICtCp
42.2 %
DCI P3 Picture Mode
Custom Color
Rec. 2020 Picture Mode
Custom Color

Unfortunately, the Dell U2718Q has poor color volume in HDR. It's severely limited by the color gamut, and it can't produce dark saturated colors very well. Note that HDR is only supported over HDMI on this monitor.

10
Picture Quality
Image Retention
IR After 0 Min Recovery
0.00 %
IR After 2 Min Recovery
0.00 %
IR After 4 Min Recovery
0.00 %
IR After 6 Min Recovery
0.00 %
IR After 8 Min Recovery
0.00 %
IR After 10 Min Recovery
0.00 %

There are no signs of temporary image retention.

10
Picture Quality
Gradient
Color Depth
10 Bit

The Dell U2718Q reproduces gradients perfectly, with absolutely no banding.

10
Picture Quality
Color Bleed
Pixel Row Error
0.000 %
Pixel Column Error
0.000 %

This monitor is free of color bleed. This is great for graphics artists that use large areas of uniform color.

6.0
Picture Quality
Reflections
Screen Finish
Matte
Total Reflections
8.3 %
Indirect Reflections
4.4 %
Calculated Direct Reflections
3.9 %

Unfortunately, the Dell U2718Q has mediocre reflection handling. Reflections aren't diffused as much as the U2717D and they may be distracting.

9.5
Picture Quality
Text Clarity
Sub-Pixel Layout
RGB

Text is exceptionally clear on this monitor. It isn't necessary to enable ClearType, but if you do, text is extremely sharp.

Motion
7.9
Motion
Response Time @ Max Refresh Rate
Best Overdrive Setting
Normal
Rise / Fall Time
8.6 ms
Total Response Time
14.2 ms
Overshoot Error
0.2 %
Dark Rise / Fall Time
8.7 ms
Dark Total Response Time
15.1 ms
Dark Overshoot Error
0.8 %

Trace Free Response Time Chart Response Time Table Motion Blur Photo
Normal Chart Table Photo
Fast Chart Table Photo

This monitor has a very good response time, but there's more noticeable motion blur than high refresh rate gaming monitors. The 'Normal' overdrive setting produces the best results. If you want a faster response time, you can set the response time to 'Fast', but this introduces significant overshoot.

7.9
Motion
Response Time @ 60Hz
Best Overdrive Setting
Normal
Rise / Fall Time
8.6 ms
Total Response Time
14.2 ms
Overshoot Error
0.2 %
Dark Rise / Fall Time
8.7 ms
Dark Total Response Time
15.1 ms
Dark Overshoot Error
0.8 %

Trace Free Response Time Chart Response Time Table Motion Blur Photo
Normal Chart Table Photo
Fast Chart Table Photo

The Dell U2718Q only supports a 60Hz refresh rate, so these results are the same as the 'Response Time @ Max Refresh Rate' test. This monitor has a very good response time, but there's more noticeable motion blur than high refresh rate gaming monitors. The 'Normal' overdrive setting produces the best results. If you want a faster response time, you can set the response time to 'Fast', but this introduces significant overshoot.

7.4
Motion
Image Flicker
Flicker-Free No
PWM Dimming Frequency
650 Hz

The Dell U2718Q uses a dual PWM flicker to dim the backlight. There's a 10kHz flicker that's always present, but this flicker is not visible at all. There's a secondary flicker at 650Hz, but due to the secondary wave, the backlight doesn't completely shut off and the flicker isn't noticeable under most conditions.

0
Motion
Black Frame Insertion (BFI)
Black Frame Insertion (BFI)
No
BFI Maximum Frequency
N/A
BFI Minimum Frequency
N/A

There's no optional black frame insertion feature on this model.

5.9
Motion
Refresh Rate
Native
60 Hz
Max Refresh Rate
60 Hz
Variable Refresh Rate
No
FreeSync
No
G-SYNC
No
VRR Maximum
N/A
VRR Minimum
No VRR
VRR Supported Connectors No VRR

Update 06/11/2020: There was a minor mistake in our scoring; it's been updated, but this has caused the refresh score to decrease a bit.

The Dell Ultrasharp U2718Q has a basic 60Hz refresh rate, which is common for 4k monitors. Most people won't have any issue with this, but gamers might be disappointed by the low refresh rate and lack of gaming-oriented features like FreeSync or G-SYNC.

Inputs
9.0
Inputs
Input Lag
Native Resolution
8.9 ms
Native Resolution @ 60Hz
8.9 ms
Variable Refresh Rate
N/A
Variable Refresh Rate @ 60Hz
N/A
10 Bit HDR
9.0 ms
Black Frame Insertion (BFI)
N/A

The Dell Ultrasharp U2718Q has excellent input lag, great for office use or even for most gamers.

9.2
Inputs
Resolution And Size
Native Resolution 3840 x 2160
Aspect Ratio 16:9
Megapixels 8.3 MP
Pixel Density
164 PPI
Screen Diagonal 27.0 inches
Screen Area 310 sq inches

This monitor has a very sharp 4k UHD resolution, which is excellent for almost any use.

Inputs
Inputs
Inputs
Total Inputs
DisplayPort 1 (DP 1.2)
Mini DisplayPort 1 (DP 1.2)
HDMI 1 (HDMI 2.0)
DVI No
VGA No
DisplayPort Out No
USB 4 (USB 3.0)
USB C No
Analog Audio Out 3.5mm 1
Microphone In 3.5mm No
Digital Optical Audio Out No
Analog Audio Out RCA No
Power Supply Internal

Two of the USB ports support USB 1.2 BC fast charging, and there's an option to power the USB ports even when the monitor is in standby.

Features
Features
Additional Features
RGB Illumination
No
Speakers
No
HDR10 Yes
Multiple Input Display
No

The Dell Ultrasharp U2718Q can be used as a USB hub. The USB ports can be left powered when the monitor is off, and two of the ports support BC1.2 fast charging, with a maximum capacity of 2A.

Features
On-Screen Display (OSD)
Features
Controls

The monitor has the same standard four-button control scheme as most Dell monitors. The buttons have good tactile feedback and the menus are generally easy to navigate, but the interface isn't as intuitive as the rocker joystick found on many LG and Samsung monitors.

Features
In The Box

  • Manual and drivers
  • USB 3.0 cable
  • DisplayPort to mini-DisplayPort cable
  • Power cable

Differences Between Sizes and Variants

We've tested the 27" U2718Q, which is the only size available.

If someone comes across a different type of panel or if their Dell U2718Q doesn't correspond to our review, let us know and we'll update the review. Note that some tests such as the gray uniformity may vary between individual units.

The U2718Q we reviewed was manufactured in May 2018 (Revision A03).

Compared to other monitors

Comparison picture

Left: Samsung CHG70. Middle: Dell U2718Q Right: Dell U2717D.

The Dell U2718Q is a very good IPS monitor, and one of the best work monitors we've tested, but there are better alternatives out there, especially if you want decent HDR performance. See our recommendations for the best monitors, the best monitors for dual setup, and the best 4k gaming monitors. See also our recommendations for the best mice and the best keyboards.

Dell UltraSharp U2720Q
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The Dell U2720Q is a 2020 refresh of the Dell U2718Q. Aside from some slight differences in their outer design and the added USB-C ports on the U2720Q, both monitors offer identical features. Performance is largely the same as well, although the U2720Q has a higher peak brightness, better SDR and HDR color gamuts, and it also has better reflection handling. However, the U2718Q has a faster response time and lower input lag.

LG 27UK650-W
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The Dell U2718Q and the LG 27UK650 both have very similar performance. They're both very good monitors for gaming. The Dell U2718Q has slightly better ergonomics, which makes it easier to place the monitor comfortably while gaming, whereas the LG 27UK650 has marginally better refresh rate since it includes the FreeSync implementation of the variable refresh rate to eliminate tearing. It's also flicker-free.

Dell U2719D
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The Dell U2718Q is better than the Dell U2719D. The U2718Q supports HDR, although this doesn't add much, and it has better vertical viewing angles. The U2718Q also has better black uniformity and has a higher resolution screen. On the other hand, the Dell U2719D has a flicker-free backlight.

Dell U2717D
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The Dell U2718Q is better than the Dell U2717D. The Dell U2718Q has a higher native contrast ratio and supports HDR, as well as having a higher resolution screen that allows you to see more details or get more done. The U2718Q has much lower input lag regardless of input resolution, great for gamers. The Dell U2717D has no visible flicker and better reflection handling.

Dell U2715H
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The Dell U2718Q is better than the Dell U2715H. The Dell U2718Q supports HDR and performs decently in that mode. It also has a 4k resolution so you can display more details of your work on the screen. Finally, the Dell U2718Q has a better black uniformity, which is great in dark scenes, and perfect gradient performance with no visible banding.

LG 27UD68
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The Dell U2718Q is better than the LG 27UD68P-B. The Dell U2718Q has better black uniformity and doesn't suffer from temporary image retention. The U2718Q also supports HDR, although this doesn't add much due to the poor color volume and insufficient peak brightness. The LG 27UD68P-B is flicker-free and has better motion handling overall thanks to AMD FreeSync support.

Samsung Space SR75
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The Dell U2718Q is a bit better than the Samsung Space SR75 for most uses, but the SR75 is a bit better for gaming. The U2718Q has a much higher native resolution, it supports HDR, and it has much better viewing angles. The U2718Q also has better ergonomics, despite the unique design of the Space SR75. The SR75 is a bit better for gaming, though, as it has a much faster refresh rate, lower input lag, and it supports FreeSync variable refresh rate technology.

Acer Predator X27
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The Acer Predator X27 is slightly better than the Dell U2718Q. The X27 is brighter and offers a much better HDR experience, as it's brighter and can produce brighter highlights, as well as the added full array local dimming feature. The X27 has a much wider color gamut, suitable for professional use for print and marketing. The Dell U2718Q has more ergonomic options and is easier to adjust to an optimal viewing position.

Dell S2719DGF
SEE PRICE
BestBuy.com

The Dell U2718Q is significantly better than the Dell S2719DGF for most uses, but the S2719DGF is better for gaming. The U2718Q has a higher resolution screen, with better viewing angles, HDR support, and much better black uniformity. The S2719DGF is better for gaming, with a higher refresh rate, FreeSync support, and a flicker-free backlight.

ASUS ROG Swift PG279Q
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The ASUS ROG PG279Q is a bit better than the Dell U2718Q. The PG279Q has much better motion handling. The high refresh rate delivers a nearly perfect response time with almost no motion blur, as well as being flicker-free. The ASUS also has an optional black frame insertion feature that can help clear up motion and supports NVIDIA's G-SYNC technology. The Dell has a higher resolution 4k screen, and supports HDR, even though HDR doesn't add much due to the U2718Q's limited color volume and low peak brightness.

LG 32UD99-W
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The LG 32UD99 is slightly better than the Dell U2718Q. The LG has better HDR support, with a better color gamut and much better HDR color volume. The LG handles motion better, with a flicker-free backlight as well as FreeSync VRR support. The Dell, on the other hand, has a better stand that can easily be adjusted to an optimal viewing position.

Samsung CHG70
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The Dell U2718Q is better than the Samsung CHG70, unless your main use is for gaming or for dark room viewing. The Dell U2718Q has wider viewing angles and a higher native resolution, so you can see every detail. The CHG70 has a higher native contrast ratio, so it performs better in a dark room. The Samsung also has much better motion handling thanks to the much higher 144 Hz refresh rate and AMD FreeSync support.

Nixeus EDG 34
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The Dell U2718Q is a better monitor than the Nixeus EDG 34. It has 4k resolution, outstanding ergonomics, and good viewing angles, so the Dell is a good monitor for in-office use. However, the Nixeus is a slightly better gaming monitor with a higher refresh rate and VRR support, plus the VA panel makes blacks look better than the Dell in dark rooms.

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