The best USB-C monitors in 2024 for photographers and creatives

The best USB-C monitors
(Image credit: Dell)

Many of the best laptops for photo editing now come with a USB-C port. It's an extremely versatile connection that is all the more useful now that it's the standard connection type for the latest Apple Macbooks.

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 look out for the USB Power Delivery feature before you buy.

• See also: Best monitors for MacBook Pro

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

Best USB-C monitors

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(Image credit: Future)
Simply the best USB-C monitor for photographers

Specifications

Screen Size: 27-inch
Aspect Ratio: 16:9
Resolution: 4K (3840x2160)
Brightness: 400cd/m2
Contrast ratio: 2000:1
Color space coverage: 100% sRGB, 100% Rec. 709, 98% DCI-P3

Reasons to buy

+
Excellent color accuracy
+
Great connectivity
+
Fair price

Reasons to avoid

-
AdobeRGB coverage could be better
-
No extras like a hood or remote dial

Sure, this USB-C monitor isn't exactly cheap, but if you're serious about photo or video editing, you need wide color space coverage so you're able to see as much color as possible. With 100% sRGB, 100% Rec. 709 and an impressive 98% DCI-P3 color coverage, the Dell UltraSharp U2723E comes close to much pricier displays for color accuracy.

It also packs 10-bit color depth and an excellent 2000:1 maximum contrast ratio, all inside a smart case with ‘InfinityEdge’ ultra-thin bezels. Video ports include HDMI, DisplayPort, plus there's a built-in USB 3.0 hub and 2x USB-C ports, one of which can supply up to 90w of power to an attached laptop.

As we'd expect from a premium IPS-based monitor, the U2723QE's image quality impresses right out of the box, with excellent color vibrancy, contrast intensity and uniformity, none of which shifts if you change your viewing angle. During our testing we also found Dell's color space coverage claims to be spot-on, as was the factory-calibrated Delta E color accuracy of <2. Even color and brightness uniformity were top notch.

Dell UltraSharp U2723QE USB-C monitor really is very hard to beat at this price point.

Dell UltraSharp U2723QE full review

(Image credit: Dell)

2. Dell UltraSharp U2720Q USB-C monitor

Another great USB-C monitor chioce

Specifications

USB-C: Yes
Screen size: 27 inches
Resolution: 3840 x 2160
Aspect ratio: 16:9
HDMI inputs: 1
Display ports: 1

Reasons to buy

+
Stunning color gamut
+
4K
+
Pre-calibrated

Reasons to avoid

-
Brightness could be higher
-
Pricey, but worth it

The U2720Q isn't quite as well specced as our top pick U2723QE (above), but then it is noticeably cheaper to buy. Color fidelity is still very good though, as this monitor will display 99% sRGB, 99% Rec. 709 and 95% of the DCI-P3 color spaces, as well as being factory calibrated to a Delta-E deviance of less than 2. The 4K (3840 x 2160) pixel resolution is super sharp over the 27-inch screen screen size, while DisplayHDR 400 certification ensures excellent highlight and shadow rendition. Oh, and don't forget the 90W USB-C power delivery, meaning even a power-hungry laptop can be powered directly from the monitor.

(Image credit: Asus)

3. Asus ProArt PA278CV USB-C monitor

The best budget USB-C monitor for photo editing

Specifications

USB-C: Yes
Screen size: 27 inches
Resolution: 2560 x 1440
Aspect ratio: 16:9
HDMI inputs: 1
Display ports: 1

Reasons to buy

+
Great value
+
Excellent sRGB & Rec 709 coverage
+
Precise color accuracy

Reasons to avoid

-
Not 4K
-
Limited Adobe RGB & DCI-P3 coverage

This monitor may be a bit pricier than the an entry-level budget screen, but it offers far better specs at what's still a very reasonable price. 100% sRGB and 100% Rec. 709 color space coverage puts this display up there with some of the best specced screens on the market, as does the out-of-the-box color accuracy of Delta-E <2. USB-C Power Delivery of 65W isn't class leading, but it's enough to power most typical modern laptops, and there's even a pair of speakers inside. The only potential drawback with this monitor is its resolution. 2560 x 1440 is some way short of 4K, but it's crisp enough over the 27-inch screen size, so don't let this be a deal-breaker unless you simply must have a pixel-less 'Retina' effect.

(Image credit: Future)
A USB-C monitor with stunning color accuracy and great build quality

Specifications

Size: 27-inch
Ratio: 16x9
Resolution: 3840x2160
Brightness: 300cd/m2
Contrast ratio: 1000:1
sRGB gamut (claimed): 100%
Adobe RGB gamut (claimed): 99%

Reasons to buy

+
Excellent color accuracy
+
Hardware calibration
+
Overall high build quality

Reasons to avoid

-
Price is hard to justify
-
Few compelling upgrades over old model
-
Hotkey Puck of arguable usefulness

This is another excellent USB-C for professional photographers, mainly thanks to its incredibly accurate colors. The 27", 4K display boasts factory color calibration to an accuracy of Delta E ≤1.5 and is capable of displaying 100% sRGB and 99% AdobeRGB coverage - impressive stuff. Elsewhere, you get USB-C connectivity with 90W Power Delivery, plus BenQ's third-generation color Uniformity Technology, hardware color calibration, and a separate 'Hotkey Puck' remote control for easy settings adjustment and color mode switching. We found the SW272U performed brilliantly in our comprehensive testing. In fact, the only drawback here is the monitor's price, which is significantly more than some rival screens like the Dell UltraSharp U2723QE which perform almost as well as the BenQ.

Read our full BenQ PhotoVue SW272U review for more details

(Image credit: Viewsonic)

5. Viewsonic VG2755-2K

Solid specs for a bargain price - a USB-C monitor well worth shortlisting

Specifications

USB-C: Yes
Screen size: 27 inches
Resolution: 2560 x 1440
HDMI inputs: 1
Display ports: 1

Reasons to buy

+
Great image quality
+
Accessible price

Reasons to avoid

-
Resolution a little low
-
Bland design

Usually top monitor specs will cost top money, but not here. Ok, you're not getting a 4K screen, but for less than £400/$400 this screen has quality IPS screen technology that translates to supreme image quality with reliably accurate color, contrast and viewing angles. There's also the all-important USB-C connectivity that can transmit video, sound and up to 60w of power over one cable, while regular HDMI and DisplayPort sockets are also present to maximize compatibility with non-USB-C computers. Just be sure to pick this VG2755-2K model with its 2560 x 1440 screen res. A plain VG2755 can also be had, but this version makes do with a lower Full HD 1920x1080 resolution, which we reckon is a little too low for a 27-inch screen, as it can make for a slightly pixelated image.

(Image credit: LG)

6. LG 27MD5KLB UltraFine 5K USB-C monitor

The best ultra-high resolution USB-C monitor

Specifications

USB-C: Yes
Screen size: 27 inches
Resolution: 5120 x 2880
Aspect ratio: 16:9
HDMI inputs: 0
Display ports: 0

Reasons to buy

+
5K display
+
Thunderbolt 3

Reasons to avoid

-
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.

See our guide to the best USB-C cables

(Image credit: Future)
Best ultrawide USB-C monitor

Specifications

Screen size: 34-inch
Aspect ratio: 21:9
Resolution: 3,440 x 1,440
Brightness: 350 cd/m2
Refresh rate: 60Hz
Response time: 5ms
Viewing angle: 178/178
Contrast ratio: 1,000:1
Color support: 100% Rec.709,100% sRGB, 98% DCI-P3
Weight: 9.3kg

Reasons to buy

+
Huge display
+
Excellent color space coverage
+
HDR

Reasons to avoid

-
A hefty investment

An ultrawide USB-C monitor like this will give you an aspect ratio of 21:9, rather than the standard 16:9, giving you extra space to view lots of photos at once, place multiple windows side-by-side, and see all the tools and palettes in your photo editing software.

The BenQ PD3420Q is our preferred ultrawide monitor for photographers. It boasts a quality 3,440 x 1,440 resolution, spread over a 34-inch 21:9 ultrawide screen, giving you a huge desktop to work on. Crucially, this monitor also has 100% sRGB, 100% Rec.709 and an impressive 98% DCI-P3 color space coverage, making it a great choice for photographers, videographers and designers alike.

If you're in the market for an ultrawide monitor that's going to give you solid, dependable image quality for image or video editing, the BenQ PD342Q is a fine choice. Extras like USB-C connectivity with Power Delivery are also welcome, as is the factory color calibration and Hotkey Puck remote control.

BenQ PD3420Q full review

(Image credit: Angela Nicholson/Digital Camera World)
The best USB-C monitor for professional photographers

Specifications

Size: 27in
Ratio: 16x9
Resolution: 3840x2160
Brightness: 500cd/m2
Contrast ratio: 1450:1
DCI-P3 gamut (claimed): 98%
Adobe RGB gamut (claimed): 99%

Reasons to buy

+
Built-in calibration system
+
Rotates between landscape and portrait orientation
+
Easy connection

Reasons to avoid

-
High price
-
Single USB-C port
-
Orientation switching not seamless

Eizo is one of the best-known names in computer monitor production and it has strong reputation amongst photographers and videographers thanks to producing no-compromise screens that command no-compromise prices.

The CG2700X can reproduce 99% of the Adobe RGB photo color space, and 98% of the DCI-P3 digital cinema standard. Another attractive feature for photographers and videographers is that this monitor has a calibration system built in. The hardware is recessed into the edge of the screen ready for deployment and it operates with Eizo’s free ColorNavigator 7 software which also enables features such as the ability to control a network of screens with colour matching.

The ColorEdge CG2700X’s 4K resolution ensures there is plenty of detail visible, while the 10-bit colour means that gradations look great. Meanwhile, the calibration system is easy to use and ensures that the colors are always accurate.

Inevitably, the main drawback here is the screen's hefty price. There are plenty of other 27-inch, 4K USB-C monitors that'll perform almost as well but for a lot less cash. But if only the very best will do, then it's got to be an Eizo.

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Ben Andrews

Ben is the Imaging Labs manager, responsible for all the testing on Digital Camera World and across the entire photography portfolio at Future. Whether he's in the lab testing the sharpness of new lenses, the resolution of the latest image sensors, the zoom range of monster bridge cameras or even the latest camera phones, Ben is our go-to guy for technical insight. He's also the team's man-at-arms when it comes to camera bags, filters, memory cards, and all manner of camera accessories – his lab is a bit like the Batcave of photography! With years of experience trialling and testing kit, he's a human encyclopedia of benchmarks when it comes to recommending the best buys.