The best USB-C monitors in 2023: top screens that can charge your laptop

A person using one of the best USB-C monitors that's on a desk
(Image credit: BenQ)

Simplify your setup with one of the best USB-C monitors. By using the USB Type-C port as their main port, these displays give users the kind of seamless setup and workflow they'll never experience with non-USB-C displays.

The USB Type-C port can support video, sound, and other data transmission while simultaneously delivering power using just a single cable. It also has an impressive capability to transfer large data and power at fast speeds, making it faster, more reliable, and easier to use than other ports. Laptop users and professionals who need to simplify their workflow and require a clean, minimalist setup will, therefore, benefit a lot from an excellent USB-C display. 

When choosing the best USB-C monitor, you need to look beyond picture quality, resolution, aspect ratio, contrast ratio, viewing angles, and brightness levels. Those things are important, of course, but there are other features to consider as well like power delivery wattage. Many USB-C ports come with 60W PD, some are only rated for 15W and very few right now offer 90W.

We've tested our share of USB-C displays, and we've narrowed down the choices to make it even easier for you. Much like how we test other monitors, we put each one through rigorous testing before considering it a worthy addition to this list. 

Whether you need a premium monitor for video editing (opens in new tab), an affordable 4K monitor (opens in new tab),  or a monitor with a webcam, you'll find the best USB-C monitor for you below. 

The best USB-C monitors available now

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Product shot of LG 32UN880-B UltraFine Display Ergo, one of the best USB-C monitorsCB

(Image credit: LG)

01. LG 32UN880-B UltraFine Display Ergo

The best USB-C monitor overall

Specifications

USB-C ports: 1
Screen size: 31.5in
Aspect ratio: 16:9
Resolution: 3,840 x 2,160
Brightness: 350 cd/m2
Response time: 5ms
Viewing angle: 178/178
Contrast ratio: 1000:1
Color support: 95% DCI P3
Weight: 10.3 kg

Reasons to buy

+
Excellent picture quality
+
More accessibly-priced

Reasons to avoid

-
Not a lot of premium features

It's hard to find a better value for your money than the LG 32UN880-B UltraFine Display Ergo monitor. You're getting a lot here for the price. Its ergonomic C-Clamp mount and stand feature is the star of the show. More than offering you a unique and space-saving stand, it lets you adjust the display to your heart’s desire. Thanks to its impressive articulation, you can retract, extend, tilt, swivel, and pivot, not to mention height adjust, the monitor to the most ergonomic position for you, no matter what you're working on. 

Of course, that panel is just as impressive, delivering 95% DCI P3 colour coverage in 4K resolution and 350 nits of brightness. Meanwhile, there's an impressive selection of ports as well – including two HDMI, a DisplayPort, and a USB hub with two USB-A ports.

So, while it might seem like a very stripped-down affair, with its minimal features – or at least the bells and whistles that accompany a lot of USB-C monitors, this display is impressive in its own right. The LG 32UN880-B is a fantastic choice for just about anyone looking for a USB-C monitor at an affordable price. For most people, this is the best USB-C monitor.

MSI MPG ARTYMIS 273CQRX-QD, one of the best USB-C monitors, on a wooden desk

(Image credit: Future)
Affordable, blazing fast USB-C monitor for gaming and editing

Specifications

USB-C: Yes, 1
Screen size: 27in
Aspect ratio: 16:9
Resolution: 2560 x 1440
Brightness: 400 cd/m2
Response time: 1ms
Viewing angle: 178/178
Contrast ratio: 3000:1
Color support: 95% DCI P3, 128% sRGB
Weight: 10 kg

Reasons to buy

+
Excellent colour accuracy
+
240Hz refresh & 1ms response

Reasons to avoid

-
VA panel causes colour shift
-
Not 4K

The MSI MPG ARTYMIS 273CQRX-QD is a good USB-C monitor to consider if you're looking for something affordable. This is one of those enthusiast-level creator displays dressed up as a gaming monitor. MSI indeed touts it as one, complete with gaming-focused features, many of which you'll find in pricier models. 

It's an impressive gaming monitor, to be sure, on paper and in practice. But, the one thing our MSI MPG ARTYMIS 273CQRX-QD review has proven is that it can moonlight as a creative enthusiast's editing display as well. With an average Delta E of 0.8, pre-calibration, as well as a wide colour coverage of 100% sRGB, 95% DCI-P3, and 94% AdobeRGB on test, it has proven itself a capable tool for content creation. That's on top of its USB-C connectivity for plugging your MacBook or ultrabook in as a source.

Gamers, on the other hand, will be impressed by that 27-inch 1440p panel, which comes with a 1000R curvature, AMD FreeSync Premium Pro, and a 1ms response time. Oh, and it also delivers a blazing-fast 240Hz refresh rate to keep up with fast-paced games and during esports tournaments.

BenQ SW321C PhotoVue, one of the best monitors for MacBook Pro, on a desk surrounded by photo equipmentCB endorsed

(Image credit: BenQ)
The best USB-C monitor for photographers and other creators

Specifications

USB-C ports: 1
Screen size: 32in
Aspect ratio: 16:9
Resolution: 3,840 x 2,160
Brightness: 250 cd/m2
Response time: 5ms
Viewing angle: 178/178
Contrast ratio: 1,000:1
Color support: 99% AdobeRGB, 95% P3, 100% sRGB
Weight: 25.6kg

Reasons to buy

+
Improved brightness and colour uniformity
+
USB-C connectivity
+
Hardware calibration with 16-bit LUT precision

Reasons to avoid

-
Main connection bay is hard to reach
-
‘Paper Color Sync’ needs refining to be truly useful

Doing creative work is a breeze on the BenQ SW321C PhotoVue. This is, first and foremost, a 4K resolution display with a larger 32-inch size screen, so it'll let you see every detail of your work.

Of course, when it comes to creative work, colour support and accuracy are even more critical, and BenQ knows this. It has equipped the SW321C with 95% DCI-P3 and 99% Adobe RGB colour gamuts and excellent colour accuracy of Delta E ≤ 2. On test, it's proven to be one of the most colour-accurate monitors we've reviewed, and delivers on that colour coverage as promised. This monitor is more than enough if you do more broadcast-quality editing.

This display also makes it easy for a minimalist setup. It also comes with thoughtful features like an SD card reader, a boon for anyone working on an ultrabook or MacBook that’s missing one, and a picture-by-picture mode that displays the same image in two different colour modes. There’s also its USB-C hub, which will let you connect your most essential peripherals to your laptop. The OSD navigation buttons, as you'll read in our BenQ SW321C PhotoVue review, is a little inconvenient to use, but the included hotkey puck makes all the difference and helps make your workflow a lot more seamless.

LG DualUp Monitor 28MQ780, one of the best USB-C monitors, against a white background

(Image credit: LG)

04. LG DualUp Monitor 28MQ780

The best 16:18 monitor for writing, coding and productivity

Specifications

USB-C ports: 1x with DP Alt. + PD
Screen size: 27.6 inches
Aspect ratio: 16:18
Resolution: 2560 x 2880
Brightness: 300 cd/m2
Response time: 5ms
Viewing angle: 178/178
Contrast ratio: 1000:1
Color support: 98% DCI-P3
Weight: 9.0 kg

Reasons to buy

+
That 16:18 is the ultimate aspect ratio for productivity
+
Ergonomic stand is a well-executed
+
Multi-tasking features are really useful

Reasons to avoid

-
More color spaces would have been nice
-
C-clamp might not fit some desks

Better than monitors with portrait modes are this new-ish breed of displays offering a squarish format. Such panels aren't as prevalent yet, but many professionals are starting to turn on to them. This new 16:18 productivity monitor from LG has come at the right time.

While we haven't done a full review of the LG DualUp Monitor 28MQ780 yet, we have been testing it for a couple of weeks now. And, honestly, we're enjoying the experience. Thanks to its squarish format, this 2560 x 2880 monitor is always wide enough to view windows, whether you've got it in landscape or portrait mode. In portrait mode, it never feels too tall (read: no more neck craning). Of course, the ergonomic and fully articulating stand lets you tilt, swivel, rotate, and move forward and backward until you've found the most comfortable position.

If you're starting to feel like you're losing control of the number of windows you've got open, don't worry. It helps you organise those windows by allowing you to snap them up into a stack of two or three. This also brilliantly lets you see all your important windows without taking the time to switch from one to the other. Do you want a seamless workflow, especially on a display with wide colour coverage? You'll want to take this one home.

BenQ PD3220U, one of the best USB-C monitors, in portrait mode on a desk

(Image credit: Michelle Rae Uy)
Reasonably-priced USB-C monitor for creatives

Specifications

USB-C ports: 2
Screen size: 31.5 inches
Resolution: 3,840 x 2,160
Aspect ratio: 16:9
Brightness: 250 nits
Response time: 5ms
Viewing angle: 178/178
Contrast ratio: 1000:1
Color support: 100% Rec.709, 100% sRGB, 95% DCl P3
Weight: 10.7kg

Reasons to buy

+
Gorgeous design
+
Lovely IPS panel

Reasons to avoid

-
Only good color accuracy
-
Not cheap

From BenQ’s professional design line is the BenQ DesignVue PD3220U, an outstanding monitor whose features extend far beyond its USB-C capabilities. Not content with USB-C, it offers not one but two Thunderbolt 3 ports to keep creatives happy to allow daisy-chaining of multiple monitors and even connection of external GPUs. 

Monitors for professional photo editors and graphic designers tend to be very expensive, but this screen strikes an incredible balance between price and specs. It boasts excellent colour coverage with 100% Rec.709, 100% sRGB, and 95% P3 colour gamuts as well as different colour modes including Animation and CAD/CAM. 

When we tested the screen, we found colour gamut and accuracy lived up to BenQ's claims, although peak brightness was below that claimed. All in all, we found the big 32-inch 4K display delivered stacks of detail and great image quality, making this the best value professional screen we've tested. The HDR support is a nice bonus. See our full BenQ PD322OU review for more details.

Product shot of Dell Ultrasharp U3223QZ against a white background, one of the best USB-C monitors

(Image credit: Dell)

06. Dell UltraSharp U3223QZ

High-end productivity USB-C display for video conferencing

Specifications

USB-C ports: 1x USB-C, 1x USB-C 90W PD
Screen size: 31.5 inches
Resolution: 3840 x 2160
Aspect ratio: 16:9
Brightness: 400 cd/m2
Response time: 5ms
Viewing angle: 178/178
Contrast ratio: 2000:1
Color support: 100% Rec 709, 100% sRGB, 98% DCI-P3
Weight: 11.9 kg

Reasons to buy

+
A ton of useful features
+
Excellent colour coverage and high accuracy

Reasons to avoid

-
Expensive

The Dell UltraSharp U3223QZ (opens in new tab) is a premium 4K display that Dell designed specifically with multitasking remote working professionals in mind. This impressive productivity monitor couldn't have come at a better time with the world back in full swing from the pandemic yet adopting that work-from-home practice reached its height during the lockdowns. 

It comes with everything you need, minus a full desktop PC inside. That includes useful multitasking features, different creative colour modes, impressive colour coverage, and naturally, an intelligent webcam that delivers up to 4K at 30 fps or 1080p at 60fps video and comes with a SafeShutter feature. For your ultimate productivity, there's even an Auto KVM (Keyboard, Mouse, Video) feature and what Dell calls "Fast Wake," which allows you to use its power button to wake both the monitor itself and your computer.

Of course, its performance is top-notch as well, giving us rich, vibrant visuals whether we're getting through a busy Monday full of video calls or streaming the latest releases. Though we haven't done a full review of this monitor, we have utilised it in testing and put it through its paces. And, we're happy to report that it's just as impressive in practice as it is on paper.

Product shot of BenQ DesignVue PD3420Q, one of the best USB-C monitors

(Image credit: BenQ)

07. BenQ DesignVue PD3420Q

A 1440p USB-C monitor for creative MacBook Pro users

Specifications

USB-C ports: 1x USB-C with 65W PD
Screen size: 34 inches
Resolution: 3440 x 1440
Aspect ratio: 21:9
Brightness: 400 cd/m2
Response time: 5ms
Viewing angle: 178/178
Contrast ratio: 1000:1
Color support: 100% Rec.709, 100% sRGB, and 98% P3
Weight: 9.6 kg

Reasons to buy

+
Great factory-calibrated colour accuracy
+
Excellent colour coverage
+
Plenty of editing modes for professionals

Reasons to avoid

-
Not 4K
-
No AdobeRGB mode

The BenQ DesignVue PD3420Q is designed specifically for creative Mac users – especially those looking for an affordable, mid-range model with excellent colour coverage and accuracy. That, of course, means that it's a USB-C display with the capability to charge your laptops as well. 

Video editors, photographers, and designers will appreciate 100% Rec.709, 100% sRGB, and 98% P3 colour gamuts as well as high colour accuracy out of the box and the plethora of colour modes that include CAD/CAM, Darkroom, DCI-P3, and HDR. Everyone, however, will get a lot of use out of its ultrawide 21:9 aspect ratio as it will give them plenty of space to spread out, multitask, and focus more on their creative process as opposed to being distracted by technical stuff.

It is limited to a 1440p resolution. However, if you're looking for something that isn't too expensive, anything 4K with this panel size and features isn't going to be as affordable.

Product shot of Asus ProArt PA32UC-K USB-C, one of the best USB-C monitors

08. Asus ProArt PA32UC-K

The best pro-level USB-C monitor for video editing

Specifications

USB-C: Yes, 1x USB-C, 1x Thunderbolt 3
Screen size: 32 inches
Resolution: 3840 x 2160
Aspect ratio: 16:9
Brightness: 350 cd/m²
Response time: 5ms
Viewing angle: 178/178
Contrast ratio: 3000:1
Color support: 100% sRGB, 99.5% Adobe RGB, 97% DCI-P3, and even 85% of Rec.2020
Weight: 14 kg

Reasons to buy

+
Feature-packed
+
Stunning image quality

Reasons to avoid

-
Extremely expensive
-
Not for gamers

The Asus ProArt PA32UC-K is for people who want a serious USB-C monitor for video editing, and it doesn’t get much more serious than this. It offers 4K resolution (at the Ultra HD standard) and huge HDR – it can reach a peak brightness higher than most TVs, so it’s one of the best ways to work with HDR footage. 

This Asus monitor also offers colour coverage that includes 100% sRGB, 99.5% Adobe RGB and 97% DCI-P3 – not to mention, pro-grade calibration features and a hardware calibration tool in the box. Strong gamma tracking and consistency complete its credentials as a creative powerhouse. Like we said: serious.

As for connectivity, it's not just USB-C, but also Thunderbolt 3, which means you can daisy-chain it to other Thunderbolt 3 devices with colossal bandwidth between them. That includes monitors, or RAIDs with your uncompressed 4K, 6K or even 8K video on it, ready for you to work with live using your tools of choice. The Asus ProArt PA32UC comes with a high price tag, but if you need what it offers, it’s worth every penny.

BenQ EW3280U, one of the best USB-C monitors

(Image credit: Future / Michelle Rae Uy)
A great all-round monitor for media and creative work

Specifications

USB-C: Yes, 1
Screen size: 32in
Aspect Ratio: 16:9
Resolution: 3840 x 2160
Brightness: 350 nits
Response Time: 5s
Viewing Angles: 178/178
Contrast Ratio: 1,000:1
Colour Support: 95% P3
Weight: 8.5kg

Reasons to buy

+
Impressive colour coverage
+
High colour accuracy after calibration
+
Has features for most needs

Reasons to avoid

-
Not very adjustable ergonomics
-
Poor Adobe RGB coverage

Not all creative professionals want or need a $1,000/£1,000 monitor. Luckily, something like the BenQ EW3280U is on hand for such consumers. This 4K display is one of BenQ’s entertainment monitors, but it's also a great all-rounder that does more than seeing you through general media consumption. 

When we tested the screen, we found it offered good colour accuracy after calibration as well as great sRGB and DCI-P3 colour coverage. Plus, its feature set is impressive for its affordable price. In fact, even though its 60Hz refresh rate isn't the best for fast-paced games, its 4K on a 32-inch panel combo is as much of a sweet spot for narrative-driven games as it is for productivity and creative workloads.

As we noted in our BenQ EW3280U review, we also found its built-in speakers and ergonomics to be a tad lacking – an articulating stand would have been especially handy – but there's already plenty to love and make you forget such limitations.

Product shot of LG 38WN95C, one of the best USB-C monitors

(Image credit: LG)

10. LG 38WN95C

The best ultra wide USB-C monitor for creatives

Specifications

USB-C: Yes, 1
Screen size: 38in
Aspect ratio: 21:9
Resolution: 3840 x 1600
Brightness: 450 nits
Response time: 1ms
Viewing angle: 178/178
Contrast ratio: 1000:1
Color support: 98% DCI-P3
Weight: 18.3kg

Reasons to buy

+
Great P3 colour coverage
+
Plenty of features

Reasons to avoid

-
Not 4K

With the MSI PS341WU being tough to find, your options for a truly impressive ultrawide USB-C monitor for creative workloads have become considerably limited. Luckily, LG is here to save the day with the LG 38WN95C, a stunning 3840 x 1600 display that gives you plenty of room to spread out and have all your tools handy so you can immerse in your creative process. Content creators will also appreciate its 99% sRGB and 98% DCI-P3 colour gamuts.

While it isn't a 5K2K display like the PS341WU, it comes with its own strengths including a fast refresh rate of 144Hz and a fast response time of 1ms, as well as AMD FreeSync Premium Pro and Nvidia G-Sync – all the good stuff esports and non-pro gamers need. A great all-rounder, it also boasts LG's ambient light sensor and an articulating stand, both of which productivity and creative professionals will appreciate. 

Of course, its pixel-per-inch ratio of 110.93 is just the ticket for making those visuals sharp and those texts comfortably readable. Oh, and did we mention its VESA DisplayHDR 600 certification?

Are USB-C monitors better?

It’s hard to say that USB-C monitors are better than the competition. But, they do offer a few advantages. First, USB-C connectivity is quickly becoming the norm on all sorts of devices, from Windows Ultrabooks and MacBooks to tablets. And, many of those devices don’t come with other forms of connectivity. So, if you want a second screen for your laptop, you’re limited to one of these displays.

Additionally, many USB-C monitors offer power delivery. So, when you connect your Dell XPS 13 or MacBook Air, the same USB-C cable driving the monitor also provides power to that computer. And, typically it’s enough to keep the battery full even when running demanding tasks. This one-cable solution also helps create a more minimal, less cluttered setup.

Of course, those advantages just benefit laptop users. If you’re using a desktop PC, you’ll probably end up sticking with a DisplayPort or HDMI connection.

Do USB-C monitors work with MacBook Pros?

Not only do USB-C monitors work with MacBook Pros, but they’re often the only reasonable choice. You can, of course, use other monitors, but you’ll have to invest and keep track of the appropriate adapters every time you connect and disconnect. And, since all current MacBook Pros come with some kind of Thunderbolt connectivity, which uses the same connection as USB-C, they’ll be able to deliver their video signal and transfer data and receive power from the monitor (if the monitor supports power delivery).

Are USB-C monitors good for gaming?

The speeds at which USB-C connections transfer data is more than sufficient for gaming. It’s about on par with DisplayPort 1.4.  The only real limitation is how it connects to your gaming computer. If your gaming desktop has a graphics card that supports DisplayPort 1.4, which just about all current GPUs do, then you’ll need to invest in an adapter and adjust some monitor and driver settings on your computer. But, if you’re using a gaming laptop sporting a USB-C port, you don’t even have to use an adapter. It’s essentially plug-and-play.

Read more:

USB-C monitors aren’t just for creative professionals and masters of productivity. There are gaming options too, as the surprisingly affordable Gigabyte M32Q proves. With 94% DCI-P3 and 120% sRGB coverage, it doesn’t quite make it as a display for pro-level content creation. However, that’s more than good enough for most users and it’s certainly good enough for gaming, especially when combined with its VESA DisplayHDR 400 certification, 1ms GTG response time, 165Hz refresh rate, and AMD FreeSync support. 

There’s no doubt that gamers, especially those who play competitively or have a penchant for fast-paced titles, will love it. This is one terrific USB-C gaming monitor, and looks every bit the part, touting gaming-inspired aesthetics, a dashboard that displays your CPU usage, clock speed and cooling management, and small gaming-centric extras. It keeps its price competitive as well. Just keep in mind that this isn’t a 4K monitor, which means you’re not gaming in 4K – though unless you have an expensive high-end GPU like an RTX 3080, you couldn’t do so anyway so this 1440p is just the ticket for most gamers.

Matt Hanson

Matt has been a technology journalist for well over a decade, writing for publications such as T3, MacFormat and Creative Bloq. He's a senior editor of TechRadar, Creative Bloq's sister site, where he can be found writing about and reviewing laptops, computers, monitors and more. He often writes for Creative Bloq, helping creatives find their perfect laptop or PC.

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