Mac Studio Screen and Mac Studio
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Update, 07/18/2022: We’ve reviewed our recommendations and have updated our best overall recommendation to the Dell U2723QE.

What to Look for in a Mac Monitor in 2022

While the monitor market offers many options, you must keep a few things in mind before picking one up for your Mac.

Most importantly, you want a monitor that works seamlessly with your machine. Depending on which Mac you are using, you can connect to a monitor one of two ways—Thunderbolt via USB-C or an HDMI port.

As the Thunderbolt port is more versatile than the HDMI port, picking up a monitor with USB-C/Thunderbolt input is better for reducing cable clutter. For MacBooks that only include a Thunderbolt port, monitors with Thunderbolt or USB-C support are your only option.

In an ideal world, you should be able to pick any monitor and expect it to work flawlessly with your Mac. Unfortunately, that’s not the case.

While buying a monitor, you also have to check if it’s compatible with Macs, particularly if you are using the new Apple Silicon-powered machines. Aside from asking the monitor manufacturer to confirm the support, you can check reviews and customer feedback on retail sites.

Besides compatibility and input support, your budget, available space, intended usage, and display size are also crucial. For example, creative professionals prefer color accuracy and better coverage of different color spaces, whereas gamers will want a high refresh rate panel and low input lag.

Screen resolution is another important part of a monitor. Although 4K has become quite common, QHD resolution provides an excellent middle ground between 4K and Full-HD resolutions. So you can choose the resolution that fits your budget.

For more helpful information about buying a monitor, you can check out our detailed explainer on how to pick the right monitor.

With the basics out of the way, now it’s time to jump into our recommendations.

RELATED: How to Pick the Right Monitor for Your PC

Best Mac Monitor Overall: Dell U2723QE

Dell U2723QE on blue background
Dell

Pros

  • 4K resolution
  • Ergonomic stand
  • Great out-of-the-box color accuracy
  • Complete coverage of sRGB and near-perfect coverage of DCI-P3

Cons

  • Refresh rate limited to 60Hz
  • Daisy-chaining issues

Dell’s USB-C-equipped Ultrasharp series monitors are popular. After all, they offer excellent picture quality and color accuracy. A 2022 addition to this lineup—the Dell U2723QE—is no exception.

This impressive monitor packs an IPS Black panel, providing a better contrast ratio than regular IPS-type displays while keeping the traditional IPS advantages, such as wide viewing angles and exceptional color accuracy.

The monitor’s 27-inch 4K display offers crisp images and text. Plus, you get a remarkable color gamut. The U2723QE covers the entire sRGB color space and has excellent coverage of AdobeRGB and DCI-P3.

Dell’s monitor also excels on the connectivity front. It not only packs one DisplayPort 1.4 port, one HDMI 2.0 port, and one USB-C port with DP Alt mode for video input but also comes with five USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-A ports, one USB 3.2 Gen 2 Type-C port, and one Ethernet port for your USB Hub needs.

The USB-C video input can also deliver up to 90W of power to a connected laptop, which is enough to fast charge most MacBooks. In short, you can hook the U2723QE up to practically anything you’d need to.

The Dell U2723QE has an understated look, typical of Ultrasharp-series monitors. There are slim bezels on all sides, and the included stand supports tilt, swivel, pivot, and height adjustments.

But the monitor isn’t without faults. For example, daisy-chaining monitors using the built-in DisplayPort out doesn’t work as intended on Macs, and the U2723QE just mirrors itself to the second monitor. Additionally, while the U2723QE is HDR-capable and DisplayHDR 400 certified, the monitor’s HDR performance isn’t the best.

While the Dell U2723QE is the best overall monitor for most people, if you want a built-in webcam, built-in speakers, 5K resolution, and better build quality, the Apple Studio Display is a good alternative. However, it costs over two times the price of the Dell monitor, so you’ll need to pay for that bump up in specs and features.

Best Mac Monitor Overall

Dell U2723QE

The Dell U2723QE delivers excellent picture quality, loads of connection options, and incredible ergonomics. It also provides a built-in USB hub and KVM switch functionality.

Best Budget Mac Monitor: Gigabyte M27Q

Gigabyte monitor on pink background
Gigabyte

Pros

  • High refresh rate panel
  • KVM switch present
  • Excellent color accuracy

Cons

  • USB-C port can only deliver 10W of power
  • Limited HDR performance

You don’t need to spend big bucks to get a good monitor for your Mac. For example, the Gigabyte M27Q, our pick for the best budget Mac monitor, typically costs around $330 but is still feature-packed.

Although Gigabyte calls it a gaming monitor, it’s more of an all-rounder. Whether you are doing office tasks, watching Netflix, or gaming, it will offer a great experience. The M27Q has QHD resolution and features a 27-inch IPS panel. The monitor also supports HDR, but it’s only rated for DisplayHDR 400.

Other features include a 170Hz refresh rate, low input lag, and excellent response time. You also get support for a KVM switch, allowing you to use a single keyboard or mouse across multiple devices.

The monitor has outstanding color accuracy, and it offers 92% coverage of the DCI-P3 color space and complete coverage of the sRGB. You also get nearly full coverage of the Adobe RGB color profile.

In terms of input ports, the Gigabyte monitor can receive display signals from HDMI, DisplayPort, and USB-C ports. However, the USB-C port can only deliver 10W of power. If you are using the M27Q with a MacBook, you’ll have to charge the laptop separately.

The M27Q also lacks swivel adjustment and can’t rotate to portrait mode. However, this is a common problem with budget monitors. If you need a monitor that’s easy to adjust, you’ll need to look at something a bit more pricey.

Best Budget Mac Monitor

Gigabyte M27Q

This may be a budget monitor, but Gigabyte doesn't skimp on the features. It has a 170Hz screen, great color accuracy, and excellent coverage of color profiles.

Best Premium Mac Monitor for Professionals: Apple Pro Display XDR

Apple Pro Display in studio setting
Apple

Pros

  • Sophisticated design
  • Exceptionally color accurate
  • Superior HDR performance
  • High brightness

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Suffers from blooming
  • Off-axis viewing is inaccurate

Apple’s stunning Pro Display XDR sits in a category of its own. This professional-grade monitor has several things going for it, and if you need reference monitor-level color accuracy and superior HDR capabilities, there is no better option than the Pro Display XDR.

The Pro Display XDR is 32-inches in size and has a 6,016×3,384-pixel native resolution, also known as 6K. In addition, it shares a lot of its design aesthetic with the 2019 Mac Pro, particularly the pattern of cooling vents on the back. All in all, the monitor looks sleek and sophisticated.

Although the company has packed an IPS-type panel in the monitor, the Pro Display XDR can offer a reasonable contrast ratio thanks to full-array local dimming. But it still falls short compared to many OLED screens. so this is something to keep in mind if the contrast is a concern.

Its color performance is impressive with 100% sRGB, 99% Adobe RGB, and 99% DCI-P3 coverage. With a Delta E of only 0.57, the color accuracy is also exceptional. Moreover, the monitor shines on the brightness front with 1000 nits of sustained full-screen brightness and 1600 nits peak brightness. The high brightness levels help the monitor bring out even the smallest highlights in high dynamic range content.

While the Apple monitor does many things right, it falls short in some areas. For example, it suffers from blooming and off-axis luminance fall-off. The lack of a stand or VESA mounting adapter from the package is also disappointing. But if you have the funds to spare, there is no beating the Pro Display XDR’s overall professional quality.

Best Premium Mac Monitor for Creative Professionals

Apple Pro Display XDR

With a stunning design and pro-grade color accuracy, the Apple Pro Display XDR is an excellent monitor for creative professionals.

Best Mac Monitor for Creatives: BenQ SW271C

BenQ monitor being used for photo editing
BenQ

Pros

  • Native 4K resolution with excellent color accuracy
  • Can display 10-bit color
  • Lots of connectivity options
  • Fully ergonomic stand

Cons

  • Poor HDR performance
  • Low brightness

If the Apple Pro Display XDR is overkill for your requirements or you don’t have the budget to go for it, the BenQ SW271C is a fantastic 4K monitor that will satisfy the needs of many creatives.

A successor to the aging SW271, the SW271C brings many welcome upgrades, including 60W power delivery support via the Thunderbolt 3 port. As a result, you can use just one cable for everything with your MacBook.

At the heart of the monitor is an 8-bit + FRC (Frame Rate Control) IPS panel that BenQ claims can display 10-bit color. The monitor accomplishes this by quickly flashing the adjacent colors to the missing original colors. This results in the human eye perceiving the missing color.

Coming to the color spaces, the monitor offers almost complete coverage of AdobeRGB, 90% of DCI-P3, and full coverage of sRGB. In addition, you get top-notch color accuracy with a Delta E of less than 2. This is great because while doing creative work, you want the colors displayed by the monitor to match as closely as possible to how the human eye perceives them.

Among other highlights, there is support for third-party hardware calibration. For example, you can use hardware calibrators with Calman Studio or Light Illusion’s ColourSpace software to get the color perfectly balanced.

HDR is one area where the SW271C lacks a bit, however. Although it supports HDR10 and HLG, the monitor isn’t bright enough to meet the DisplayHDR 400 specification. For creative work, however, that’s far from a deal-breaker.

Best Mac Monitor for Creatives

BenQ SW271C

The BenQ SW271C has a lot going for it, from 4K resolution to outstanding color accuracy. In addition, it can display 10-bit color.

Best Ultrawide Mac Monitor: BenQ PD3420Q

BenQ ultrawide monitor on pink and yellow background
BenQ

Pros

  • Superb color accuracy
  • Wide 34-inch screen with 1440p resolution
  • Anti-glare coating
  • KVM switch available

Cons

  • Missing AdobeRGB mode
  • Pricey for a WQHD monitor

The BenQ PD3420Q is a multitasker’s dream. It’s a 34-inch WQHD monitor that uses an IPS-type panel. So you get enough screen real estate to open multiple programs simultaneously without worrying about minimizing them.

It is an excellent monitor for content creators, designers, and video editors. You get a rock-solid color accuracy out of the box with a Delta E of less than three. The monitor offers 98% of DCI-P3 and full coverage of the sRGB color space. Unfortunately, however, the PD3420Q lacks AdobeRGB mode.

HDR10 support is present, though, and the monitor meets DisplayHDR 400 specifications.

The PD3420Q also comes with ample input options. You can use HDMI, DisplayPort, or Thunderbolt 3 via USB-C. The last one can also be used to deliver power to your laptop at up to 65W. In addition, the monitor can function as a USB hub and includes three USB 3.1 Type-A ports.

Lastly, the BenQ monitor has a sturdy build quality, and it looks great. It also provides good ergonomics and features an anti-glare coating. It’s expensive, but if you want an ultrawide monitor, you can’t go wrong with

Best Ultrawide Mac Monitor

BenQ PD3420Q

The BenQ PD3420Q is an excellent ultrawide monitor. It has a 34-inch screen, super color accuracy, and Thunderbolt 3 support.

Best Gaming Mac Monitor: Acer Predator XB273U

Acer gaming monitor on green and blue background
Acer

Pros

  • 240Hz native refresh rate
  • Adaptive-Sync support
  • Very low input lag

Cons

  • Average contrast ratio
  • Limited HDR performance

Macs aren’t well known for gaming, but there are some great titles available on the platform. So if you occasionally fire up the likes of Shadow of Tomb Raider, Metro Exodus, and Fortnite on your Mac, the Acer Predator XB273U is the right monitor for you.

Acer’s Predator monitor has a native refresh rate of 240Hz, which you can overclock to 270Hz, and supports Adaptive Sync. You also get exceptionally low input lag and excellent response time, resulting in a fantastic gaming experience.

Thanks to the IPS panel, the viewing angles are good, but the contrast ratio is average. The monitor also reaches high brightness levels in SDR. HDR brightness, on the other hand, isn’t very impressive, though the monitor gets bright enough to meet the DisplayHDR 400 certification.

The monitor has good ergonomics, as well. As a result, you can set it up as you like without any compatibility issues. Its slim bezels will be helpful in dual monitor setups.

The standard input options are present, including USB-C. The USB-C port can also deliver up to 65W of power to the connected laptop and supports upstream, allowing you to transfer data from storage devices plugged into the monitor.

Best Gaming Mac Monitor

Acer Predator XB273U

With a 240Hz refresh rate, exceptionally low input lag, and Adaptive-Sync support, this Acer monitor is perfect for gaming.

The Best Desktop Macs of 2022

Best Desktop Mac
24-inch iMac M1 (Four ports, 2021)
Best Budget Desktop Mac
M1 Mac mini (2020)
Best Desktop Mac for Video Editing
Mac Studio
Best for Students
24-inch iMac M1 (Two ports, 2021)
Best High Peformance Mac
Mac Studio (2022)
Profile Photo for Gaurav Shukla Gaurav Shukla
Gaurav Shukla is a technology journalist with over a decade’s experience reporting and writing about consumer technology. His work has appeared in Android Police, XDA Developers, and NDTV Gadgets 360.
Read Full Bio »
Profile Photo for Gaurav Shukla Gaurav Shukla
Gaurav Shukla is a technology journalist with over a decade’s experience reporting and writing about consumer technology. His work has appeared in Android Police, XDA Developers, and NDTV Gadgets 360.
Read Full Bio »