The 5 Highest Resolution Monitors in 2021
Apr 5, 2021
Whether you’re a gamer, creative or general user, resolution can be one of the most impactful stats in defining your display’s quality.
Thankfully, in today’s market options like 5K & 8K monitors are no longer a pipe-dream, but readily available.
But they’re not all necessarily worth purchasing.
This is why today’s feature is focused not just on the highest resolution monitors available in the world, but the best choices that are actually worth buying for various needs.
Highest Resolution Monitor: Dell UltraSharp UP3218K
Not only is this Dell offering the best 8K display, and the highest res monitor on the market, it’s also one of the only innovations that meet the incredible 7690×4320 resolution.
Whether you’re an 8k video editor, someone who wants content to be crisp even at the closest of glances, or are looking for something as close to a future-proof monitor as you can get, the Dell UltraSharp is rivaled by little else.
Alongside its startling 8k resolution, the monitor boasts some of the best color accuracies on the market.
Implementing Dell PremierColor, the UP3218k offers 100% AdobeRGB, 100% sRGB, 100% Rec. 709 & 98% DCI-P3.
Along with these impressive specs is an IPS panel, decent 400-nits brightness, great contrast capability, and, impressively, a 6ms GTG response time (we would expect something higher for a screen of this resolution, making it the best 8k gaming monitor choice today – though we prefer the next pick for gamers).
For high-end video/photo editors or those serious about achieving the best content viewing experience (e.g. an HTPC monitor), these specs lend themselves very nicely to your requirements; it’s hard to describe how great 8k content can look (especially with unrivaled picture quality).
It’s worth point out though, that while this is the highest resolution monitor in the world that’s readily available, that doesn’t mean it’s the right pick for every setup.
Firstly, for content-focused users, as amazing as 8k content looks; there is a limited amount of it.
We expect UHD/4k to be the leading choice for high-end producers for the foreseeable future, so a monitor of this caliber may be overkill unless you are happy to pay the premium (we have other choices with you in mind below).
If you want the best 8k monitor for gaming, this is it; but it’s important to realize that you will need as powerful a PC as possible to achieve even marginally acceptable settings with an 8k resolution (for the limited games that support it).
Then there’s the fact that you won’t have an 8k 144hz monitor (or any refresh rate above 60fps) for a long time (let alone a PC that can support it). There are other picks that not only improve the gaming experience through refresh rate but also through an even faster latency.
Yes, 8k gaming will probably be around en-mass one day.
If you are a serious production user that demands 8k, then we have no qualms; this Dell offering is the best choice for you.
It’s worth pointing out that the screen requires 2 DisplayPort connections to run at 8k (which you should achieve on the most powerful modern GPUs/PCs).
Finally, we need to touch on the build quality/design.
Somehow both as sturdy as you would hope for in a premium offering, while also offering fantastic slim bezels, a gorgeous aesthetic, and great adjustability (including a 90-degree rotation), we’re pleased to see the UP3218K doesn’t compromise in physical longevity.
Although it’s worth noting our cautions and checking out our other picks if you think 4K/5K screens could suit you, we are comfortable in naming this Dell offering the highest resolution monitor worth buying today.
If you demand 8K with fantastic picture quality, it’s the best choice for you.
Highest Resolution Ultrawide Monitor: Samsung CRG9 / Odyssey G9
With a mouth-watering 5120 x 1440 / 5k resolution, this Samsung monitor instead chooses to use its 49-inch large pixel count to create a super ultrawide display that is effectively 2 1440p 27-inch screens in one monitor.
Not only do we love this from a perspective of productivity and multitasking, but we also think that Samsung’s approach to exploiting DPI in a 49-inch 32:9 aspect ratio is far more practical than the current 8k monitors on the market.
In other words: although this 5k display is lower resolution, we think many users will appreciate the premium feel of a double-width 27″ 1440p screen more than a 16:9 8k monitor.
This is true most of all for gamers.
With 120Hz, QLED, a fantastic color gamut capability, up to 1000-nits brightness / HDR1000, 4ms GTG response time & FreeSync Premium Pro support, the specs on this machine are incredible.
Not only is the picture quality fantastic, but the low latency, high refresh rate, and capability to avoid ghosting/tearing issues with FreeSync are all utilities that point to what a fantastic premium gaming display this is, whether you’re into single-player titles or competitive esports.
With a decent availability of gaming content supporting 32:9 (or the option to focus on a 16:9 game with things like Discord/Skype and other second-screen visuals), it’s hard to describe just how stunning and immersive content looks on this monitor.
Speaking of immersive, the CRG9 is also the highest resolution curved monitor available.
Boasting a 1800R curve that engulfs games/content around your vision to match the curvature of your eyes more ergonomically/naturally than a flat-screen (the G9 model takes this further and boasts a 1000R curve, the strongest one available in mainstream monitors if you think this would suit you).
Although marketed as a gaming monitor, we think the excellent picture quality, refresh rate, and latency will provide a premium experience to many other types of users; especially considering the price of the CRG9 is in many cases cheaper than “work-orientated” options of similar specs (but if you want other alternatives, our largest monitor feature has them).
Remember that if gaming isn’t on the menu, this is still 2 screens in one, with excellent productivity capability (including the option to connect 2 PCs/laptops at once and display them side-by-side).
If you are a gamer and can stretch your budget further, we highly recommend the other version on the Amazon listing, the Odyssey G9.
Not only is this the highest resolution gaming monitor, but one of the best for gamers in any category. It boasts a 240hz refresh rate & an even faster latency – it’s worth the additional price if you can afford it (but the CRG9 is still an excellent alternative if not).
Finally, we’ve boasted before about the gorgeous aesthetic of the CRG9 and G9; both looking like they could be part of a spaceship, their designs complement the unique innovation behind them, and what’s more; they’re sturdy enough to support real longevity.
All-in-all, if you’re interested in the unparalleled experience a super ultrawide display can offer, the CRG9 (or OG9) is not just the best value, but the overall best 5K monitor, with incredible quality across the board.
Second Highest Resolution 16:9 Monitor: LG 27MD5KL-B
The last of our main 3 picks are for those who think a 5k resolution would be more suited for their needs over 8k, but also want to keep to the traditional 16:9 form factor over our ultrawide pick above.
The 27MD5KL is a fantastic premium monitor. Boasting an IPS panel with 99% DCI-P3 color, a typical brightness rating of 500-nits & a 1100:1 contrast ratio all alongside its 5120 x 2880 setup (the largest resolution monitor outside of 8k), the picture is stunning and for a majority of content, going to look as sharp as that of our top 8k choice.
Important note: The LG UltraFine display runs via USB-C; making it largely positioned as a MacBook/Mac high-resolution monitor. It is compatible with PC usage, however, but make sure you have a graphics card that can support the bandwidth necessary via USB Type-C instead of the usual HDMI/DisplayPort (we’ve still highlighted this for Windows users because the options for 16:9 5k are surprisingly slim, as most manufacturers instead produce ultrawide offerings at this res spec).
We wouldn’t recommend this pick (or any choices with 16:9 5k) for gaming, with a 16ms GTG response time and specs that are generally not as aligned for games (if you are focussed on a 16:9 screen over the Odyssey G9 above, we would push you towards a 4k 144hz display instead).
The monitor is slick, minimalist, and very aesthetically pleasing, as you would expect from LG, with no qualms on the build quality (and some basic adjustability options for ergonomics).
If 8k feels like overkill for your needs, the 27MD5KL is the best 5k monitor available.
Alternative Picks – Best of the Rest
The top 3 picks are the highest resolution displays today (and the best models in their respective categories).
That said, we wanted to include a couple of quick-fire additional options that may suit different lower budgets.
Best Cheap High-Resolution Monitor: AOC U2790VQ
If you are looking at our picks and salivating, but also tearing up at the price tags, don’t worry; we appreciate these are some very expensive monitor options.
If you can’t stretch to a premium offering, we highly recommend this AOC monitor, that still boasts stunning picture quality with 4K, which for budget users, will still provide incredibly gorgeous content.
Highest Resolution TV: Samsung 8k Q800T
If you are a user that is open to using a TV as their monitor, the Q800T is an excellent choice; boasting 8K at an incredible price given the size of the screen, media, in particular, will look stunning on this offering.
For the sharpest image possible
Two screens in one
For a seriously huge setup
The mid-range answer for immersion and smooth gameplay