Last Updated on February 15, 2022 by Devaun Lennox
A properly calibrated, detailed, and accurate monitor is key to a good edit. And they ensure that you see all the fine details in your footage, so you can make the proper adjustments to create a compelling video. But, not every monitor is apt for the job or capable of handling footage from today’s flagship cameras. In addition, many don’t offer the accuracy and reliability necessary for the enormous attention to detail required to color grade footage. So, you’ll want a monitor ready to tackle the difficulties at hand and do the job well. Thankfully, a dedicated video editing monitor will happily take the lead. And it’s correctly tuned for the demands of post-processing.
But, the market for potential video monitors is quite vast. And there are many factors to consider when looking at a monitor dedicated to editing videos. With that, we’ve compiled a list of the best video editing monitors on the present market. And we’ve also created a brief guide on what to consider when looking into monitors for editing videos.
Jump to a Section
5 – Eizo CG319X
Eizo’s CG319X is an all-out uncompromising monitor that delivers class-leading specifications and power. This 32-inch 4K DCI monitor features a wide-angle 10-bit IPS panel covering 100% sRGB, 99% AdobeRGB, and 98% DCI-P3 gamuts. It also houses a built-in sensor that swings onto the display to calibrate it automatically, eliminating the need for third-party calibration. Yet, it also debuts as the first monitor with AI functionality, letting the monitor shift its color or brightness based on the ambient temperature in real-time to improve accuracy. Together, you get a near flawless color reproduction in only 3 minutes after it stabilizes. Other bonuses include Safe Area Marker, Aspect Marker, 4K Zoom, Gamut Warning, Luminance Warning, a light-shielding hood, a built-in carrying handle, and a five-year warranty.
Overall, while demanding at its price, Eizo’s CG319X brings uncompromising performance from a long-standing leader in this space. And it’s currently the benchmark of the industry.
4 – Acer Predator XB273K
Acer’s Predator XB273K is quite the powerhouse. This 27-inch 4K monitor features a wide-angle IPS panel with a DCI-P3 90% coverage and certified Delta E<1. It also offers NVidia G-SYNC certification, giving it blazing 120 Hz refresh speeds. You can also overclock to 144 Hz, perfect for gaming without any artifacts. And it brings HDR400 support, the latest sub-standard to refine HDR10. Other bonuses include a three-year warranty and a monitor shade hood.
Acer’s Predator XB273K is an excellent monitor for those wanting to edit videos and occasionally game.
3 – Dell U3219Q
Dell’s U3219Q is the company’s latest monitor and an excellent one at that. This 32-inch 4K monitor features a wide-angle 8-bit IPS panel with an antiglare finish and 99% sRGB or Rec 709 and 95% DCI-P3 coverage. And it comes factory calibrated to certify its accuracy to a Delta E ≤ 2. Yet, it brings HDR400 support, for true-to-life HDR image reproduction. And it does so with TUV certification, ensuring it remains flicker-free and easy on the eyes during extended sessions. Other bonuses include 90º rotation, a built-in KVM switch, and a three-year warranty.
Overall, Dell’s U3219Q offers excellent color and a true HDR experience at 4K resolution.
2 – ViewSonic VP2785
ViewSonic’s VP2785 offers high-end accuracy to meet demanding professionals without a ridiculous price in the process. This 27-inch 4K monitor features a wide-angle 10-bit IPS panel with an anti-glare finish and 100% Adobe RGB and 96% DCI-P3 coverage. And it comes pre-calibrated to certify its accuracy to a Delta E ≤ 2. Thus, it delivers incredible color accuracy and a wide gamut of 4.39 trillion colors ready to showcase even the slightest shades or variations. Yet, it also provides excellent color uniformity across the screen to boot, perfect for color-critical scenes. And ViewSonic also offers an optional hardware calibration kit, letting you calibrate the device as needed over time. Other bonuses include 90º rotation, HDR10 support, a built-in KVM switch, ambient light sensors, and a three-year warranty.
Overall, ViewSonic’s VP2785 is a solid option if color accuracy and budget are forefront decision points.
1 – BenQ PD3200U
BenQ’s PD3200U is technically a business monitor but one that doubles as a high-quality budget option for videographers. This 32-inch 4K monitor features a wide-angle 10-bit IPS panel with a matte finish and 100% Rec 709 and sRGB coverage. And it comes pre-calibrated from the factory to certify its accuracy to a Delta E ≤ 3. BenQ’s also added Eye-Care Technology to reduce eye strain by eliminating blue light, screen flicker and optimizing the brightness to the ambient lighting. Other bonuses include 90º rotation, a darkroom mode, a DualView mode, an SD card reader, a built-in KVM switch, and a three-year warranty.
Overall, BenQ’s PD3200U offers an excellent balance between price and features. And it’s a solid budget-friendly option that’ll likely suit the needs of most.
What to look for in Video Editing Monitors
You want the monitor to display the captured footage accurately. So, ideally, you want a monitor with enough accuracy to reproduce all the colors discernible by the human eye. But that’s not entirely feasible in most products quite yet. Even so, every minor detail matters. So for today’s monitors, a Delta E ≤ 2 accuracy tolerance and over 80% DCI-P3 coverage are best. But, this factor ultimately comes down to how important color is in your post-production workflow. Getting full sRGB coverage will be sufficient for beginners and a massive upgrade compared to most conventional monitors.
You can also find monitors with various color depths, ranging from 8-bit to 10-bit. Of course, many cameras shoot in 8-bit. But, you can also find plenty of high-end cameras offering 10-bit RAW capabilities or even 12-bit. In such cases, having a lower-end monitor with an 8-bit LUT won’t show the full-color range of the captured video. So in those cases, look for 10-bit monitors if you have a graphics card supporting the feature and often work with log footage.
Most video editing monitors come factory calibrated from the get-go. But, to ensure maximum performance, you’ll want to periodically calibrate it with an external colorimeter to correct any discrepancies over time. Doing so also calibrates the display to ambient light in your workspace, further improving accuracy. But, if you don’t want to use an external device, look for monitors with built-in hardware calibration.
Look for monitors with a brightness of around 200-350 nits. Most high-end monitors tend towards the 350 nit side of the spectrum, giving you maximum flexibility to configure it according to your room. But, generally, 250 nits is the best not to cause unnecessary eye strain. Also, if you want true HDR, you’ll want a monitor with a brightness rating of at least 400 nits. There they can at least support the updated HDR400 standard.
If you plan on outputting videos in 4K UHD, then you’ll want a 4K-equipped display. There, you’ll be able to review the footage at native resolution at 1:1 scale to have an accurate representation of the captured detail. Plus, 4K displays also provide more real-estate for on-screen tools, which is a nice bonus.
You can find monitors with various display panel types ranging from TN, VA, PA, or IPS. But, for video editing, IPS panels are best. The reason is that they offer the widest viewing angles, approaching 180º, without any noticeable differences in contrast and brightness throughout the image. Other display types tend to darken or change colors when viewed at different angles. And that’s not ideal when editing. IPS displays also offer the best color accuracy with more true-to-life rendering.
You find monitors with glossy, anti-reflective, or matte coatings. Glossy panels offer more contrast and brighter images. But, they’re generally not recommended for video editing. Instead, consider a matte or anti-reflective panel, as it provides a flat image closer to reality.
Contrast determines the difference between the brightest and darkest areas of the image. Manufacturers tout high contrast ratios, but generally, a static ratio of 1,000:1 is easily sufficient for editing videos.