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Reviewed on Jan 17, 2019

LG 32UL950-W MONITOR REVIEW

Usage Ratings - Version 1.0
7.8
Mixed Usage
8.0
Office
7.8
Gaming
7.9
Multimedia
7.9
Media Creation
7.0
HDR Gaming
Size : 32"
Resolution : 3840x2160
Refresh Rate : 60 Hz
LCD Type
:
IPS
Variable Refresh Rate
:
FreeSync

The LG 32UL950-W is a very good 32" IPS monitor with great screen real estate thanks to the 4k resolution. It has wide viewing angles, which is great but doesn't look as good in a dark room, due to the limited native contrast ratio and poor black uniformity. It supports HDR and can display a wide color gamut, but the local dimming feature is bad. Gamers will appreciate the low input lag and FreeSync support, and it does work with NVIDIA's new Adaptive Sync driver.

Pros
  • Image remains accurate when viewed at an angle
  • Good for gaming, with FreeSync support and low input lag
  • Great screen real estate
Cons
  • Poor dark room performance
  • PWM flicker in the backlight

Test Results
Design 7.5
Picture Quality 7.5
Motion 7.5
Inputs 9.0

Check Price

7.5

Design

Curved : No
Curve radius : N/A
Weight (without stand)
:
12.8 lbs (5.8 kg)
Weight (with stand)
:
15.7 lbs (7.1 kg)

The 32UL950 has a good design. It looks very similar to the 34WK95U and 32GK850G, including the thin, curved metallic stand, and slim bezel design. The stand has a decent height adjustment and good tilt range, but it can't swivel. The display is well built, with a solid metal stand, but the rest of the monitor is made of plastic.

Stand
Width
:
16.1" (40.9 cm)
Depth
:
9.0" (22.9 cm)

The stand supports the monitor well, but there is some wobble to it. The design is nearly identical to the 34WK95U.

6.3 Ergonomics
Height Adjustment
:
4.3" (10.9 cm)
Switch portrait/landscape : Yes
Swivel Range : N/A
Tilt Range : -20° to 2.5°

Mediocre ergonomics, mainly due to the lack of swivel. It has a good height adjustment, and it can rotate to a portrait orientation, which is nice.

Back
Wall Mount : VESA 100x100

The back is quite plain, with only minimal design features. There is a small clip on the stand for cable management.

Borders
Borders
:
0.4" (1.0 cm)

The borders are thin, with no significant gaps or issues. They are thin enough to be used in a multi-monitor setup.

Thickness
Thickness (with stand)
:
6.3" (16.0 cm)
Thickness (without stand)
:
1.6" (4.1 cm)

Like many similar LG models, the LG 32UL950-W is very thin, especially when removed from the stand.

7.5 Build Quality

The LG 32UL950-W has good build quality. The stand is solid and well built, but the rest of the monitor is mostly plastic. Despite that, there are no obvious issues or loose parts that could break over time.

7.5

Picture Quality

The LG 32UL950-W delivers good overall picture quality. With SDR content, it looks excellent thanks to the great SDR peak brightness, and outstanding SDR color gamut. In HDR, it has only decent peak brightness, but it can display a wide color gamut, which is great. Unfortunately, it doesn't look as good in a dark room, due to the limited native contrast ratio, bad local dimming feature, and poor black uniformity.

6.5 Contrast
Native Contrast
:
1336 : 1
Contrast with local dimming
:
1336 : 1

The LG 32UL950-W has a decent contrast ratio, slightly better than the 34WK95U. Unfortunately, the local dimming feature is ineffective at boosting the contrast ratio. With uniformity compensation enabled, the contrast ratio decreases to 1176:1.

1.5 Local Dimming
Local Dimming
:
Yes
Backlight
:
Edge

The local dimming feature is bad. The 32UL950-W is edge-lit, and the local dimming isn't very effective at dimming darker areas of the screen. The local dimming algorithm also can't keep up with fast moving objects, so the zone changes can be noticeable in some circumstances. This is very similar to the Dell U3219Q and LG 34WK95U.

8.0 SDR Peak Brightness
SDR Real Scene
:
379 cd/m²
SDR Peak 2% Window
:
243 cd/m²
SDR Peak 10% Window
:
368 cd/m²
SDR Peak 25% Window
:
400 cd/m²
SDR Peak 50% Window
:
403 cd/m²
SDR Peak 100% Window
:
404 cd/m²
SDR Sustained 2% Window
:
241 cd/m²
SDR Sustained 10% Window
:
367 cd/m²
SDR Sustained 25% Window
:
399 cd/m²
SDR Sustained 50% Window
:
402 cd/m²
SDR Sustained 100% Window
:
403 cd/m²
SDR ABL
:
0.033

Great peak brightness with SDR content. There is some variation in the brightness, due to the local dimming feature dimming dark areas around the smaller test patterns. With most normal content this shouldn't be as noticeable.

We measured the peak brightness with the 'Custom' Picture Mode, and Local Dimming enabled.

6.8 HDR Peak Brightness
HDR Real Scene
:
423 cd/m²
HDR Peak 2% Window
:
270 cd/m²
HDR Peak 10% Window
:
410 cd/m²
HDR Peak 25% Window
:
444 cd/m²
HDR Peak 50% Window
:
447 cd/m²
HDR Peak 100% Window
:
682 cd/m²
HDR Sustained 2% Window
:
266 cd/m²
HDR Sustained 10% Window
:
408 cd/m²
HDR Sustained 25% Window
:
442 cd/m²
HDR Sustained 50% Window
:
445 cd/m²
HDR Sustained 100% Window
:
442 cd/m²
HDR ABL
:
0.033

Decent HDR peak brightness. Large bright areas can hit higher brightness levels due to the local dimming feature dimming smaller highlights.

As with SDR, we measured the peak brightness with the 'Custom' Picture Mode, and Local Dimming enabled.

7.0 Horizontal Viewing Angle
Color Shift from Left
:
35 °
Color Shift from Right
:
35 °
Brightness from Left
:
42 °
Brightness from Right
:
42 °
Black Level from Left
:
75 °
Black Level from Right
:
75 °
Curve Radius : N/A

Decent horizontal viewing angles. When looking at the monitor from an angle, the contrast levels remain constant, but the image appears dim, and colors lose accuracy. At narrow angles, the image remains accurate, good for two player co-op games.

8.1 Vertical Viewing Angle
Color Shift from Below
:
26 °
Color Shift from Above
:
26 °
Brightness from Below
:
35 °
Brightness from Above
:
35 °
Black Level from Below
:
75 °
Black Level from Above
:
75 °

Great vertical viewing angles. The contrast remains constant at all vertical angles, which is great, but the image fades, and colors become very inaccurate. This will be especially noticeable if the screen isn't at eye-level, or if you are sharing your work with someone standing beside you.

8.8 Gray Uniformity
50% Std. Dev.
:
2.259 %
50% DSE
:
0.114 %
5% Std. Dev.
:
0.300 %
5% DSE
:
0.041 %

The 32UL950 has great gray uniformity. There is almost no noticeable dirty screen effect, which is great. In near-black scenes, the uniformity is almost perfect.

There is a Uniformity mode, that is supposed to improve gray uniformity. Since the monitor already has excellent gray uniformity, there is little benefit to enabling this, and it causes a decrease in native contrast.

5.4 Black Uniformity
Native Std. Dev.
:
1.936 %
Std. Dev. w/ L.D.
:
3.884 %

The LG 32UL950-W has poor black uniformity. There is noticeable black light bleed along the edges of the screen. Unfortunately, the local dimming feature actually makes things worse, as the edge-lit system can only dim the columns that are far away from the test cross, and there is still noticeable bleed.

6.9 Pre Calibration
Picture Mode
:
DCI-P3
Luminance
:
405 cd/m²
Luminance Settings
:
100
Contrast Setting
:
70
RGB controls
:
50-50-50
Color Temperature
:
6182 K
White Balance dE
:
3.06
Color dE
:
3.87
Gamma
:
2.17

Decent accuracy out of the box. The gamma does not follow the target curve at all, which causes some scenes to appear too dark, and some scenes to appear too bright, and the color temperature is a bit warm. The color dE and white balance dE are high enough to be noticeable by most enthusiasts.

9.6 Post Calibration
Picture Mode
:
Custom
Luminance
:
99 cd/m²
Luminance Settings
:
20
Contrast Setting
:
20
RGB Controls
:
48-50-51
Color Temperature
:
6540 K
White Balance dE
:
0.68
Color dE
:
0.40
Gamma
:
2.18

After calibration, the LG 32UL950-W has excellent accuracy. Gamma follows the target curve almost perfectly, which is great, and the color temperature is much closer to the calibration target of 6500 K. Color and white balance errors are corrected, and any remaining inaccuracies are too small to be noticed without specialized equipment.

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

9.2 SDR Color Gamut
sRGB xy
:
99.7 %
Adobe RGB xy
:
85.0 %

s.RGB Picture mode: Custom (Calibrated)
Adobe RGB Picture Mode: Custom

Outstanding SDR color gamut, with essentially perfect coverage of the s.RGB color space, and excellent coverage of the wider Adobe RGB color space, great for professional photo and video editing.

9.6 SDR Color Volume
sRGB in ICtCp
:
99.6 %
Adobe RGB in ICtCp
:
93.0 %

s.RGB Picture mode: Custom
Adobe RGB Picture Mode: Custom

Excellent SDR color volume, one of the best we've measured so far. The higher native contrast allows the 32UL950 to display darker colors than the 34WK95U, especially in the Adobe RGB color space.

7.3 HDR Color Gamut
Wide Color Gamut
:
Yes
DCI P3 xy
:
76.9 %
Rec. 2020 xy
:
69.5 %

DCI P3 Picture mode: Custom (HDR)
Rec. 2020 Picture Mode: Custom (HDR)

Decent HDR color gamut, but not as good as the LG 32UD99. The 32UL950 can display a wide color gamut, which is great for HDR movies and games.

6.9 HDR Color Volume
DCI-P3 in ICtCp
:
69.1 %
Rec. 2020 in ICtCp
:
68.8 %

DCI P3 Picture mode: Custom (HDR)
Rec. 2020 Picture Mode: Custom (HDR)

Decent HDR color volume, slightly better than the 32UD99. It is limited by the HDR color gamut, and can't produce dark saturated colors in HDR, due to the limited contrast ratio.

10 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 on the 32UL950, even immediately after displaying our high contrast static test image for 10 minutes.

9.8 Gradient
Color Depth
:
10 Bit

The LG 32UL950-W has outstanding gradients. There is almost no noticeable banding in any shade, which is great.

10 Color Bleed
Pixel row error
:
0.001 %
Pixel column error
:
0.001 %

There are only extremely minor pixel errors, not enough to be noticeable under normal viewing conditions.

7.5 Reflections

Good reflections handling, but it doesn't perform as well in a bright room with lots of windows.

7.5

Motion

The LG 32UL950-W has good motion handling. It has a great response time, but some more serious gamers may find it too slow for fast-paced games. It has a standard 60 Hz refresh rate, and it supports FreeSync, including with NVIDIA's new FreeSync drivers. Unfortunately, it uses PWM flicker to dim the backlight, and this can be noticeable at all brightness levels, except at full brightness.

8.2 Motion Blur
80% Response Time
:
6.3 ms
100% Response Time
:
14.9 ms
Best Overdrive Setting
:
Normal

Response Time Off
Response Time Normal
Response Time Fast
Response Time Faster

The 32UL950 has a great response time, nearly identical to the Dell D3218HN. There is some overshoot and undershoot in some transitions, but it is relatively minor, and shouldn't be noticeable. We recommend the 'Normal' Response Time, as higher settings significantly increased the level of overdrive, causing worse overshoot with only minor performance gains.

The duplications in the motion blur photo are caused by the backlight flicker.

4.5 Image Flicker
Flicker-free : No
PWM Dimming Frequency
:
240 Hz
Black Frame Insertion (BFI)
:
No
BFI Maximum Frequency
:
N/A
BFI Minimum Frequency
:
N/A

Unfortunately, there is PWM flicker at all brightness levels below max brightness. If you are sensitive to PWM flicker, setting the brightness to the maximum setting will stop the backlight from flickering. There is no option to adjust or remove the flicker completely.

7.8 Refresh Rate
Native
:
60 Hz
Factory Overclock
:
N/A
Variable Refresh Rate
:
FreeSync
G-SYNC Compatible
:
Partial
VRR Maximum
:
60 Hz
VRR Minimum
:
40 Hz
VRR Maximum With OC
:
N/A
VRR Supported Connectors : DisplayPort, HDMI

The LG 32UL950-W has a good 60 Hz refresh rate, and it supports AMD FreeSync. It is also partially compatible with NVIDIA's Adaptive Sync mode, allowing you to use FreeSync VRR with a 10- or 20- series NVIDIA graphics card. Although this monitor isn't officially supported, it does work, as long as FreeSync is enabled in the monitor's OSD. Unfortunately, only the 'Ultimate' setting works, 'Basic' does not.

9.0

Inputs

The LG 32UL950 has excellent low input lag in any mode, and an excellent 32", 4k screen, that results in outstanding screen real-estate, great for multitasking or for a more immersive gaming experience. It has a decent selection of inputs including two USB-C ports, but only 1 full-size HDMI and DisplayPort connection.

8.9 Input Lag
Native Resolution
:
9.0 ms
Non-Native Res @ Native Refresh
:
9.0 ms
Native Resolution @ 60 Hz
:
9.0 ms
Variable Refresh Rate
:
9.5 ms
10 bit HDR
:
9.3 ms
Black Frame Insertion (BFI)
:
N/A

Excellent low input lag even in HDR, or when a non-native resolution is displayed. This should please most gamers, as the monitor feels responsive, even if you decide to play at a lower resolution for graphically intensive games.

9.2 Resolution and Size
Native Resolution : 3840 x 2160
Aspect Ratio : 16:9
Megapixels : 8.3 MP
Pixel Density : 140 PPI
Screen Diagonal : 31.5 inches
Screen Area : 424 sq inches

The 32", 4k screen results in great screen real-estate, and is great for multitasking. The high pixel density is excellent for watching videos or gaming.

Inputs
Total Inputs
DisplayPort : 1 (DP 1.4)
Mini DisplayPort : No
HDMI : 1 (HDMI 2.0)
DVI : No
VGA : No
DisplayPort Out : No
USB : 2 (USB 3.0)
USB C : 2 (Thunderbolt 3) (1x in with PD, 1x out)
Analog Audio Out 3.5mm : 1
Microphone In 3.5mm : No
Digital Optical Audio Out : No
Analog Audio Out RCA : No
Power Supply : External Brick

There are two USB-C Thunderbolt 3 ports, including one that can be used to daisy chain a second display, which is great. It also supports power delivery over one of the Thunderbolt 3 ports, which is great, but it is limited to 60W, which is just enough for most Macbook Pros.

Features

The LG 32UL950-W has decent additional features. It has built-in speakers and supports HDR, which is nice. There are a few options that can be adjusted from the monitor's OSD, allowing you to personalize the image to your personal preference.

Additional Features
Speakers
:
Yes
HDR10 : Yes
Multiple input display
:
PBP

There are a few additional features on the 32UL950, including built in speakers, and HDR support. From the monitor's OSD, there are a few additional modes, including:

  • Black Stabilizer: Allows you to customize the contrast to improve visibility in dark scenes.
  • Super Resolution+: Customize the sharpness of upscaled images.
  • DFC: Adjust the screen brightness automatically according to the content on the screen.
  • Uniformity: Adjusts the image to attempt to compensate for uniformity issues. Since the 32UL950 already has great uniformity, this simply reduces the contrast ratio without improving uniformity much.

On-Screen Display (OSD)
Controls

The 32UL950 has the same joystick found on the majority of LG monitors. It is easy to use and provides good tactile feedback.

In The Box

  • Manual and CD
  • 2 USB-C cables
  • DisplayPort Cable
  • HDMI Cable
  • External Power Adapter

Differences between Sizes and Variants

We tested the 32UL950, which is the only model available. There are similar models available from LG, some of them are listed below.

If someone comes across a different type of panel or if their LG 32UL950 doesn't correspond to our review, let us know and we will update the review. Note that some tests such as the gray uniformity may vary between individual units.

Model Size Resolution Refresh Rate Notes
32UL950 32" 4k 60 Hz FreeSync, HDR, Local Dimming
34WK95U 34" 5120x2160 60 Hz HDR, Local Dimming
32GK850G 32" 1440p 144 Hz G-Sync
32UL750-W 32" 4k 60 Hz VA, HDR, FreeSync
27UL650-W 27" 4k 60 Hz HDR, FreeSync

The 32UL950 we reviewed was manufactured in September 2018.

Compared to other Monitors

Left: Dell U3219Q. Middle: LG 32UL950. Right: LG 32UD59-B.
Unlike our other photographs, this picture wasn't taken under a controlled environment, so do not draw conclusions from it.

The LG 32UL950 is a good monitor with decent HDR performance, but there are cheaper models that outperform it. See our recommendations for the best 28-32 inch monitors, the best monitors for Mac Mini, the best 4k gaming monitors, and the best 4k monitors.

LG 32UD99-W
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The LG 32UD99 is slightly better than the LG 32UL950. Both offer very similar performance, but the 32UD99 has a flicker-free backlight, which is great, and it has a slightly higher native contrast ratio. The 32UD99 has a slightly better stand that is made of metal, and better build quality.

Dell U3219Q
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The LG 32UL950 is slightly better than the Dell U3219Q. Both deliver very similar overall picture quality, but the 32UL950 supports FreeSync, which is great for gaming, and has more inputs. The U3219Q has better ergonomics, making it slightly more versatile.

LG 27UK650-W
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The LG 27UK650 and the LG 32UL950 deliver very similar performance overall. The 27UK650 has a flicker-free backlight, which is great, and it's more accurate out of the box. The 32UL950 has a larger screen, and it can display a wide color gamut, great for HDR content. The 32UL950 has better connectivity, thanks to the additional Thunderbolt ports and USB hub.

LG 34WK95U-W
SEE PRICE
Amazon.com

The LG 32UL950 is a bit better than the LG 34WK95U. The 32UL950 supports FreeSync, and has a more versatile stand that can be switched to portrait orientation. The 34WK95U has a wider HDR color gamut and better color volume, as well as a wider format screen that delivers a more immersive gaming experience, and is better for multitasking.

7.8 Mixed Usage

Decent monitor for most uses. The stand can't swivel, but it has good viewing angles, great SDR peak brightness, and good reflections handling. It has low input lag in any mode, which is great, and a fast response time. It also supports FreeSync, great for gamers.

8.0 Office

Great monitor for office use thanks to the large, high resolution screen with wide viewing angles that is great for multitasking. It can also daisy-chain a second monitor with the Thunderbolt 3 connection, and keep your Macbook charged with a single cable between the computer and screen.

7.8 Gaming

The LG 32UL950-W is a very good monitor for gaming. The large, high resolution screen delivers a more immersive gaming experience, and it has low input lag for an immersive experience. It has excellent low input lag, and it supports FreeSync. Unfortunately, it isn't as well suited for late night gaming, due to the limited native contrast ratio and poor black uniformity.

7.9 Multimedia

Very good for multimedia. The 32", 4k screen is great for watching the latest 4k UHD movies, and it supports HDR, which is nice. It has wide viewing angles, great for sharing the latest YouTube trends with your friends. Unfortunately, it isn't great for watching movies in a dark room, due to the limited native contrast and poor black uniformity.

7.9 Media Creation

Good monitor for media creation. The high resolution screen allows you to see more of what you are working on. It has an outstanding SDR color gamut, including great coverage of the wider Adobe RGB color space, great for professional print and video editing.

7.0 HDR Gaming

Decent monitor for HDR gaming. It has excellent low input lag for a more responsive gaming experience, and a fast response time that produces only a small blur trail behind fast-moving objects. Unfortunately, it has a limited native contrast ratio, and can't get bright enough in HDR to perfectly display the creator's intent in some games.

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