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The best USB-C monitors for photo editing in 2019

Welcome to our guide to the best USB-C monitors for photo editing. Whether you’re looking for the best USB-C monitor for a MacBook Pro or MacBook Air laptop, or for a Windows 10 machine, we’ve got you covered. 

Many of the best monitors for photographers now come with a USB-C port. It's an extremely versatile connection that enables you to easily connect up a laptop with a USB-C port – all the more useful now that USB-C is the regular standard for the latest Apple laptops.

Right now, we think the best USB-C monitor for photo editing is the 4K LG 27UD88-W, but there are a lot of options out there, at different price points and with different features to consider. 

Using a single USB-C cable, not only will the best USB-C monitors replicate (or extend) the screen of your laptop, they can also transmit data. This means they can act like a USB hub, so you can plug other USB devices – such as keyboards, mice and external hard drives – into the monitor, and your laptop will be able to use them.

Some of the best USB-C monitors for photo editing will also charge your laptop when it's plugged in via USB-C – so you won't need a separate power supply for your laptop. However, not every USB-C monitor supports this, so make sure you check out the features before you buy.

Here’s our pick of the best USB-C monitors for photo editing right now. 

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01. LG 27UD88-W 27-inch 4K USB-C monitor

The best USB-C monitor for photo-editing overall right now

USB-C: Yes | Screen size: 27 inches | Resolution: 3840 x 2160 | Aspect ratio: 169 | HDMI inputs: 2 | Display ports: 1 | Release date: 2018 | RRP: $659/£630

FreeSync
Crisp display
Affordable
One-year warranty

The excellent 27-inch LG 27UD88-W is our pick for the best USB-C monitor for photo editing overall, thanks to its balance between price and features. The 4K resolution is ideal for photographers who are working with high resolution photographs, and the Color Calibration Pro tool boosts the colour accuracy of the monitor, which is essential for anyone who is looking for the best USB-C monitor for photo editing that won't cost the earth. Thanks to the USB-C port you can easily hook up your laptop and charge it as well, all with one cable. (If you're a pro photographer with a bigger budget, you might prefer the Dell U3818DW at number two below.)

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02. Dell U3818DW UltraSharp USB-C monitor

The best USB-C monitor for professional photographers

USB-C: Yes | Screen size: 38 inches | Resolution: 3840 x 1600 | Aspect ratio: 219 | HDMI inputs: 2 | Display ports: 1 | Release date: 2017 | RRP: $1,499/£1,535

Wide color gamut
3-year warrantee
No FreeSync support
Refresh rate not high

For professional photographers, we think the best USB-C monitor money can buy is the Dell U3818DW UltraSharp. Dell's UltraSharp line of monitors is well known for providing exceptional image quality, and the colour accuracy on this screen makes it ideal for image editing. At 38-inches, this is a very large monitor, but its ultra-wide 21:9 aspect ratio means you get a huge amount of work space, so you can have numerous windows open at once without needing more than one monitor. It's curved, so it's comfortable to use, and its 'InfinityEdge' screen features incredibly thin bezels, which helps prevent this monitor from being too large.

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03. Samsung LC27H800FCUXEN USB-C monitor

The best cheap USB-C monitor for professional photographers

USB-C: Yes | Screen size: 27 inches | Resolution: 1920 x 1080 | Aspect ratio: 169 | HDMI inputs: 1 | Display ports: 1 | Release date: 2018 | RRP: £339

Affordable
Curved
Only 1080p
Limited ports

If you're looking for the best budget USB-C monitor for professional photographers, then the Samsung LC27H800FCUXEN is an excellent choice, and there's some good deals on it if you shop around (or, even better, use the price comparison tool on this very page). This is one of the cheapest USB-C monitors on the market, but it still has the build and image quality that Samsung is known for. Sure, there are some compromises you have to make, such as the 1080p resolution and lack of ports, but for the price, this is a solid performer that brings the versatility of the USB-C connection to your desk.

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04. Asus ProArt PA32UC USB-C monitor

A brilliant 4K USB-C monitor for photo editing

USB-C: Yes | Screen size: 32 inches | Resolution: 3840 x 2160 | Aspect ratio: 169 | HDMI inputs: 4 | Display ports: 1 | Release date: 2018 | RRP: $2,000/£2,000

Feature-packed
Stunning image quality
Extremely expensive
Not for gamers

Aimed at creative professionals, the Asus ProArt PA32UC is a brilliant 4K USB-C monitor for photographers, and it boasts HDR imaging capabilities, and comes in a sophisticated, USB-C and Thunderbolt 3-equipped package with nearly every feature a creative could want for SDR and HDR work. Best of all for professionals, you get a 100% sRGB color space coverage, 99.5% Adobe RGB and 95% DCI-P3; plus pro-grade calibration features and a hardware calibration tool in the box. You can do sRGB-accurate work, wide gamut-accurate work, and HDR work with the PA32UC. There's no getting away from the fact that it is expensive, but if you're serious about image quality, this is the USB-C monitor to go for.

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05. Acer H277HU 27-inch USB-C monitor

A top-class budget USB-C monitor

USB-C: Yes | Screen size: 27 inches | Resolution: 2560 x 1440 | Aspect ratio: 169 | HDMI inputs: 1 | Display ports: 1 | Release date: 2016 | RRP: $499.99/£499

Affordable
Looks good
Not 4K
Not for professionals

The Acer H277HU is another very good budget USB-C for photographers and image editing on. It's got a higher resolution than the Samsung LC27H800FCUXEN, but it's still not 4K, and it's a bit more expensive. But it's a great choice if you want a bit more work space thanks to the higher resolution, while still keeping the price down. It also comes with a HDMI and DisplayPort, plus that all-important USB-C port for connecting your laptop.

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06. BenQ PD2710QC DesignVue USB-C monitor

A brilliant professional USB-C monitor

USB-C: Yes | Screen size: 27 inches | Resolution: 2560 x 1440 | Aspect ratio: 169 | HDMI inputs: 1 | Display ports: 2 | Release date: 2017 | RRP: £514

Rec. 709 colour spec 
Great colour accuracy
Not a huge amount of ports
Boring design

This is another excellent USB-C for professional photographers, mainly thanks to its incredibly accurate colours, as it covers 100 per cent of the Rec.709 (HDTV) colour gamut as well as 100 per cent of the sRGB colour space, and will even remind you when it's due to be calibrated. It has a stand that allows it to be flipped into portrait mode, which can come in handy if you're editing photographs in that orientation. It also has a built-in USB-C doc that includes multiple standard USB ports, video outputs and even an Ethernet port for internet, making this a brilliant choice for people who have incredibly thin laptops that lack those ports.

07. LG 27MD5KA UltraFine 5K USB-C monitor

The best ultra-high resolution USB-C monitor

USB-C: Yes | Screen size: 27 inches | Resolution: 5120 x 2880 | Aspect ratio: 169 | HDMI inputs: 0 | Display ports: 0 | Release date: 2017 | RRP: $1,300/£1,179

5K display
Thunderbolt 3
A little ugly 
Not enough inputs

The LG UltraFine 5K USB-C monitor is the best USB-C monitor for photographers looking for extremely high (above 4K) resolution. Its 5120 x 2880 resolution offers 14.7 million pixels across a 27-inch screen. Photos are breathtakingly rich in detail, vibrant and lifelike, with 218 pixels per inch and a 60Hz refresh rate. It’s aimed at Mac-users, with four Thunderbolt 3/USB Type-C ports on the back. Of course, any laptop with a USB-C port is supported, but be warned that it doesn't have any other video inputs, so if your laptop doesn't have a USB-C port, this minimalist monitor won't be for you.

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08. HP Envy 27-inch 4K USB-C monitor

A stylish 4K USB-C monitor for photographers

USB-C: Yes | Screen size: 27 inches | Resolution: 3840 x 2160 | Aspect ratio: 169 | HDMI inputs: 2 | Display ports: 1 | Release date: 2017 | RRP: $499.99/£449

FreeSync
4K
Beautiful design
Colour accuracy could be better

The HP Envy 27 is a stunning 4K USB-C monitor with sleek aesthetics, thanks to its micro-thin bezels. While it's aimed more at gamers, like other devices in HP's Envy line, it does an excellent job providing 4K visuals and USB-C functionality for a very decent price.  It delivers rich colours and excellent image detail, but you'll need to do a bit of tweaking to the default settings to get this monitor looking the best. If you're a professional photographer who needs spot-on colour accuracy, then this might not be the best USB-C monitor for you, but for anyone looking for a stylish 4K moniutor with USB-C, then this is definitely worth considering.

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09. Acer XR382CQK 38-inch Curved USB-C Monitor

The best big screen USB-C monitor

USB-C: Yes | Screen size: 37.5 inches | Resolution: 3840 x 1600 | Aspect ratio: 21:9 | HDMI inputs: 2 | Display ports: 1 | Release date: 2017 | RRP: £1,249

Multiple display profiles
2,300R curvature
Ports difficult to access

The Acer XR382CQK's 38-inch display, complete with AMD’s FreeSync technology, makes this the best USB-C large screen monitor. It comes with an ergonomic stand with height, tilt and swivel so you can easily adjust it to make it comfortable to work on and there’s also the normal arrangement of eye-protecting features like an anti-flicker mechanism and a blue light filter. While colour accuracy isn't as spot on as the BenQ PD2710QC, if you want a USB-C monitor to make presentations on, or just love working with a large screen, then this is the one for you. 

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10. LG 34UM69G-B UltraWide USB-C monitor

Another ultra-wide USB-C wonder worth considering

USB-C: Yes | Screen size: 34 inches | Resolution: 2560 x 1080 | HDMI inputs: 1 | Display ports: 1 | Release date: 2018 | RRP: $699.99/£XXXX

FreeSync
Dynamic Action Sync
Screen Split
No speakers

If you're after an ultra-wide USB-C monitor to make use of that wider screen size (so you don't need multiple monitors on a desk, for example), then the LG 34UM69G-B is definitely worth considering. It's more affordable than other 21:9 USB-C monitors on this page, mainly because it has a lower resolution. This means you don't get as much space to work on as higher resolution monitors, but you still get that ultrawide aspect ratio. Meanwhile, out-of-the-box colour accuracy is good, with strong grayscale performance. This is a brilliant budget USB-C monitor for the price.

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