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Acer floats a bit under the radar, lagging behind in brand recognition when compared to the HPs and the Samsungs of the market. But, considering that Acer's monitors are built with similar components and panels as those larger names, they’re worth considering, and this Acer 27-inch workhorse takes the cake for its price-to-feature ratio. First, with a resolution of 3840 x 2160, any graphic designer will have tons of pixels to play with, and you won’t need to worry about blowing up projects past this screen’s resolution capabilities.
It’s also an IPS display, which means that the viewing angle is a super-wide 178 degrees — an important factor for designers because without good viewing angles, you’ll see color distortion on the far boundaries and recesses of your screen. They’ve built-in 100% RGB color correction to ensure your projects are as accurate as possible, and with a 4-ms response rate, you won’t see a lag in your mouse movements and adjustments. Add that in with a frameless design, and a cool, offset, modern stand, and this is the perfect specialty monitor for your design desk.
To get the best detail for very minute work with images, a large high-resolution display is ideal for graphic artists. The NEC PA-322UHD display offers a very large 32-inch display with a full 4K or UltraHD display resolution. The 32-inch panel used for the display uses the new IGZO technology that allows it to get some great color while using less power than traditional LCD panel technologies. In fact, it can display up to 99.2% of the AdobeRGB color space.
To make sure that the display continues to offer the best color possible over its life, NEC also offers this version with its SpectraView color calibration unit. This ensures that digital artists can be sure that there work on their PC will be accurate to their final product. The downside here is, of course, the price which is typically around $3500.
Want a large 30-inch display but don't want to have to pay the premium for a high-quality 4K display? The Dell UltraSharp U3017 is a great lower-cost option available. The 30-inch display panel uses more traditional IPS technology but still offers a nice 2560 x 1600 display resolution for highly detailed work. The display offers some great color support with up to 99% of the AdobeRGB color space.
The best part is that Dell, with its PremierColor program, calibrates the displays at the factory to offer some great out of the box color. While the list priced is typically around $1500, it is possible to find it for less making this much more affordable than professional 4K displays.
LG’s offering for the 27-inch 4K market is great and would make a solid monitor for any working designer — or even just someone who wants to do some gaming and have it look great. The 3840 x 2160 resolution puts you square in the 4K realm, which is important when you’re looking closely at such a large screen. LG promises that the sRGB spectrum will be upwards of 99% accounted for, meaning near-perfect color accuracy and more consistent work output.
It's made strides with the monitor controls, forgoing an awkward button-based system and opting for on-screen controls in the form of a window that lets you adjust the monitor more precisely to your needs. With such a high resolution, you’re also going to want to try their screen-split tech that lets you work on two projects simultaneously.
The other star feature comes in the form of LG’s FreeSync tech, giving you adjusted movement and smooth graphics no matter what graphics card your computer is using. Round that out with a wide-angle IPS panel yielding great color rep, even on the borders, and this monitor is the perfect designer’s rig (including as part of a multiple monitor setup).
One big issue that many 27-inch 4K displays face is the inability to properly support the higher color gamuts. They may have the detail, but they lack the color. Dell's UltraSharp UP2716D may only have a 2560x1440 resolution but it offers full support of the AdobeRGB and sRGB colors spaces plus support for the REC 709 and DCI-P3 often used in video work.
Combine this with the Dell PremierColor factory calibration and this display offers some of the best color accuracy on the market. Pricing may be a bit on the high side compared to some other displays but even at the full list price of $899, it is an incredible display that is great for anyone doing professional graphics work.
Sadly, Dell does not make an UltraSharp 24-inch display with 4K video support. This is partly a problem with the supply of high-quality 24-inch Ultra HD display panels. While they may offer high resolutions, they tend to lack the color performance of most of the larger displays. This, of course, does offer the advantage of them being much more affordable.
The display still does offer up to 99% coverage of the sRGB color space but less when it comes to the AdobeRGB. In addition, it is not factory calibrated to the same levels as the PremierColor displays the company offers. Still, it is one of the best 24-inch display panels for those that want 4K resolutions.
If you have a limited budget and desk space for the display, the ASUS PA248Q is a good option for those needing a solid display for graphics work. The 24-inch panel uses a somewhat non-standard 1920x1200 native resolution that gives it a slightly higher resolution than many others. It uses IPS technology and offers some good color that is color calibrated by ASUS but not to the same levels as Dell's PremierColor displays.
It features a full 100% of the sRGB color spectrum which is good enough for many users. The best part about this is that the display can often be found for under $300, making it one of the most affordable of the professional level displays.