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The best monitors for video editing in 2021

Best monitors for video editing 2021
(Image credit: Photo by Jakob Owens on Unsplash)

The best monitors for video editing help to make sure that whatever you're making is as close as possible to what you're intending to make. No matter whether you're just reviewing recorded footage or working on careful grading of a near-final product, you want to be sure that the screen you're working on is as accurate possible, so it has the best chance to be seen by viewers just how you want it to look.

Naturally, we're looking for the best monitors for video editing to offer really strong colour reproduction – preferably with good DCI-P3 coverage – and high enough accuracy so that any difference is indistinguishable to the human eye (with a delta E < 2). Brightness is where things get tricky, because of HDR. If you're recording in HDR and you're using one of the best video editing software or best video editing apps that support it, then you'll want to look for videos that let you see the difference. But if not, it's more important to have a really even light with accurate colours than the chase brightness. We've got both options in this list.

For resolution, we're ideally looking for 4K displays. This provides a huge space for working – you can potentially keep so many tools on-screen if you play with the scaling – but it also enables you to view Ultra HD video at native resolution. There are 8K screens are around, and these can be useful since you can fit multiple 4K videos on there at once, or can review 6K or 8K video natively. But generally, 8K is overkill. You can also go under 4K, of course – if you're on a budget and want strong accuracy, that will be the way to go. True, you can't view the footage back 1:1, but that's not always such an issue.

To get more from your monitor, you can pair it with our best headphones for video editing. Now, let’s dig into which of these premiere monitors deserve your avid attention as you work on your final cut. 

The best monitors for video editing available now

Dell Ultrasharp U3219QCB

(Image credit: Dell)

01. Dell Ultrasharp U3219Q

The best monitor for video editing for most people

Screen size: 32-inch | Resolution: 3840 x 2160 | Refresh rate: 60Hz | Panel technology: IPS | Inputs: 1x HDMI, 1x Displayport | USB: 4x USB 3.0, 1x USB Type C

Excellent color accuracy
Great connectivity overall
Limited brightness

The Dell Ultrasharp U3219Q is a creative powerhouse, and makes it one of the best monitors for video editing. It's a nice, big 32 inches in size, which means a hefty canvas for tools and viewing footage, while the Ultra HD resolution gives you the detail you need. And we're very happy with 99 per cent sRGB and Rec. 709 coverage, plus 95 per cent DCI-P3, with excellent colour uniformity across the panel.

You're not getting quite the same raft of pro-level colour features as you'll find on the likes of the Eizo ColorEdge CG319X (see further down), but the balance of image quality and price here is just right. There is HDR support, though it's only HDR400 – better than nothing for improving footage, but hardly TV grading standard. The design is workmanlike but smart, with a thin bezel, and it includes USB-C connectivity, acting as a useful USB hub, thanks to four Type A ports. It also has an HDMI port and a DisplayPort connection.

Best monitors for video editing: BenQ PD3200UCB endorsed

(Image credit: BenQ)

02. BenQ PD3200U

The best monitor for video editing if you're on a budget

Screen size: 32-inch | Resolution: 3840 x 2160 | Refresh rate: 60Hz | Panel technology: IPS | Inputs: 1x DisplayPort, 1x Mini-DP, 1x HDMI | USB: 4x USB 3.0

Large panel
Superb color accuracy
Basic design

If you need a 4K monitor for video editing with solid image quality at a lower budget, the BenQ PD3200U is just what you're looking for. The design is a little more basic than some of our options here, but that's fine, because the budget is going where you need it: on the 32-inch Ultra HD display and it's great overall image quality. 

The PD3200U is built for creatives, and actually has some specific viewing profiles that are great for video editing, including animation and darkroom modes. Its colour accuracy is excellent without calibration, so it can save you time as well as money. 

MSI Prestige PS341CB endorsed

(Image credit: MSI)

03. MSI Prestige PS341WU

The best ultrawide monitor for video editing

Screen size: 34-inch | Resolution: 5120 x 2160 | Refresh rate: 60Hz | Panel technology: Nano IPS | Inputs: 1x DisplayPort, 2x HDMI | USB: 1x, USB Type C, 3x USB 3.2 Type A, 1x USB 3.2 Type B

5K 21:9 panel
Excellent colours and good brightness
Cheap-feeling build

The MSI Prestige PS341WU is also built for creatives, taking advantage of MSI's history in elite gaming – one of very few groups pickier about details than creatives… Any, this beautiful 5K ultrawide display is the selling point here, especially since it includes 98% DCI-P3, and 100% sRGB colour coverage. It's doesn't get a huge amount better than that. Meanwhile, the 5120x2160 resolution means you can actually see Ultra HD video natively and still have a bit of space for some tool palettes to make live changes.

The average brightness of 450 nits and peak brightness of 600 nits (making it HDR600 rated) is higher than you'll find on most displays. It may not quite be an HDR reference monitor, but it's better than most options (especially at the same price). It's packed with useful connections too, including three video plugs, USB-C, and a selection of ultra-fast USB sockets. It doesn't have the pro-feeling build quality of something like the rock-solid Dell creative monitors, but that won't matter when you're deep into your timeline.

Eizo ColorEdge CG319XCB endorsed

04. Eizo ColorEdge CG319X

The best monitor for video editing if money is no object

Screen size: 31.1-inch | Resolution: 4096 x 2160 | Refresh rate: 60Hz | Panel technology: IPS | Inputs: 2x DisplayPort, 2x HDMI | USB: 3x USB 3.0

Industry standard presets
Remarkable color accuracy
Automatic AI calibration
Extremely expensive

The Eizo ColorEdge CG319X is built for professional work with no room for error. You can see this from its 98% DCI-P3 colour coverage and built-in preset for that, alongside a selection of broadcast and cinema presets, including Rec. 2020. You can also see it in the DCI 4K resolution.

That 4096x2160 resolution is ideal if you're working with video you've recorded in the slightly-wider-than-UHD format, since it means you can check the original footage at native quality, no matter what format you might switch it to during editing. It's not very high brightness, but it still supports HLG HDR, so you'll know you're seeing everything it can do. Perhaps most importantly, it has a self-calibration system, with a built in sensor automatically checking its accuracy periodically, and correcting any issues without you having to lift a finger. You spend less time fiddling with the screen and more time fiddling with your footage. See our Eizo ColorEdge CG319X review for more why we like this monitor so much.

Dell UP3218K

(Image credit: Dell)

05. Dell Dell UltraSharp 32 PremierColor UP3218K

The best 8K monitor for video editing

Screen size: 32-inch | Resolution: 7680 x 4320 | Refresh rate: 60Hz | Panel technology: IPS | Inputs: 2x DisplayPort | USB: 3x USB Type A, 1x USB Type B, 1x USB Type A (power only)

Colossal 8K resolution
Fantastic colour coverage
So, so expensive
No HDMI 2.1

This is the best monitor for video editing if you're recording in 6K or 8K and need a way to view it as the camera sensor intended. There may not be many 8K options, but this Dell UltraSharp UP3218K makes sure that if you do get one, you're getting an absolutely top-tier screen in so many ways. It doesn't just up the resolution and forget all the other key stuff: with 100% AdobeRGB, 100% sRGB, 100% Rec. 709, and 98% DCI-P3 coverage, it's at the peak of colour reproduction as well as resolution.

Connectivity is a little weaker – with no HDMI 2.1 port, the only connections for 8K support are two DisplayPort connectors, and there's no USB-C at all – but as long as you can push all those pixels, you won't mind. And despite its colossal resolution, it's not stupidly large: 32 inches.

BenQ EX3501R

(Image credit: BenQ)

06. BenQ EX3501R

The best curved monitor for video editing

Screen size: 35-inch | Resolution: 3440 x 1440 | Refresh rate: 100Hz | Panel technology: IPS | Inputs: 2x HDMI, 1x DisplayPort | USB: 1x USB 3.0, 2x USB 2.0

HDR support
Fast refresh rate
USB-C connectivity
Bland design

The BenQ EX3501R is one of the best monitors for video editing despite its main job being as a gaming monitor. But with strong colour reproduction that includes 100% sRGB support, it pulls off its double duty with style. It even has support for HDR10 over HDMI too, though with its average brightness of 300 nits, don't expect to be dazzled – still, BenQ describes it as a 'video enjoyment monitor', and it has the chops for that overall. 

Even better – it's an ultrawide curved screen, which means it's putting its wide load of tools and space to work more easily in your vision. And at 2.35:1, it's proportioned for cinemascope films, so playing them back fills the display. A USB-C port provides welcome easy connectivity, and though the 100Hz refresh rate won't be important for video editing mostly, it's nice if you want to get some gaming in too.

Asus ProArt PA32UC-K

(Image credit: Asus)

07. Asus ProArt PA32UC-K

The best monitor for HDR video editing

Screen size: 32-inch | Resolution: 3840 x 2160 | Refresh rate: 60Hz | Panel technology: IPS | Inputs: 4x HDMI, DisplayPort | USB: 2x Thunderbolt 3/USB Type C, 2x USB Type A

1,000-nit peak HDR brightness 
Excellent high-speed connectivity
Expensive stuff

For most of the monitors here, resolution and colour accuracy are of prime concern, with HDR largely an afterthought. But on the Asus ProArt PA32UC-K, HDR is front and centre. And in the corners, all with just the same level of depth and punch. That's because the mini-LED direct array backlight provides up to 1,000 nits of peak brightness, meaning this hits full HDR1000 certification. That's elite TV or phone screen kind of range, so when you're working with HDR on here, you can see much closer to what people will see at the higher end of home tech. As with all HDR, it's not just about the brightness though: that mini-LED backlight means there are 384 dimming zones, so you get much better division of light and dark than anything else here can dream of.

Of course, Asus is providing the goods elsewhere too. 4K resolution is good to go, as is 95% DCI-P3, 99.5% Adobe RGB and 100% sRGB colour coverage. And uniquely for this list, twin Thunderbolt 3 ports makes this a high-speed connection hub, so you can keep your full-quality files connected to it and can dock and undock your laptop quickly for hitting the road.

And if this somehow leaves you cold, there's always the even more pro version: the Asus ProArt PA32UCX-K. This boosts P3 coverage to 99%, and features an incredible 1,152 local dimming zones for the backlight.

Apple Pro Display XDR

(Image credit: Apple)

08. Apple Pro Display XDR

The best 6K monitor, and an HDR wizard

Screen size: 32-inch | Resolution: 6016 x 3384 | Refresh rate: 60Hz | Panel technology: IPS | Connections: 1x Thunderbolt 3, 3x USB Type-C

1,600-nit peak brightness 
Huge 6K resolution
Thunderbolt & USB-C connectivity
Very expensive…
…and it doesn't come with a stand

Apple's 6K display is a beast, aiming to produce something closer to a professional monitor in the film production sense, rather than a monitor in the 'computer screen' sense we've been using it here. You're looking at a resolution of 6016 x 3384, which is enough for many 6K formats (though not quite the 6K full frame recording of a RED camera). Added to that is an incredible HDR peak brightness of up to 1,600 nits, with a typical brightness of 1,000 nits – and there are 576 individual dimming zones for backlight control, so contrast will be simply colossal.

In terms of colours, there are specific reference modes for DCI P3, sRGB, NTSC, BT.709, and many more. That includes a reference mode for 'Apple display', which will make it match a MacBook Pro for brightness, so you get a consistent look if you have them side by side. There's the option of a nanotexture effect on the screen to reduce reflectivity as low as it goes for monitors like this, too.

It comes with one Thunderbolt 3 port (meaning it can go at the end of a Thunderbolt chain, but can't be a Thunderbolt hub), plus three USB-C ports for connecting accessories. The downside to all this is that it's extremely expensive, and the price our widgets are pulling in here are just for the display… the official stand costs a further £949/$999/AU$1,699. You can also get a VESA mount adapter, if you prefer.

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