Best HDR monitors in 2022 (4K, OLED, mini-LED)

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With monitor technology advancing at a rapid rate, it’s no surprise to see a large influx of HDR monitors available in today’s market. HDR used to be a fairly uncommon feature in monitors, however, that no longer seems to be the case anymore. Even budget monitors now offer some form of HDR functionality, albeit with varying performance results and image quality.

While the best HDR monitors are still some ways behind TVs, there’s no doubting the vast increase in HDR performance within the monitor sector. With many console gamers also choosing gaming monitors for next-gen PS5 and Xbox Series X consoles, we’re starting to see manufacturers prioritize HDR functionality more openly. Furthermore, with FALD (full-array local dimming), mini-LED backlight technology, and OLED panels all becoming much more common, the average HDR performance across all monitors is on the rise.

All being said, we’ll be scouring the web to find only the best HDR monitors we can get our hands on. We’ve had the pleasure of testing and reviewing a tonne of monitors over the years, giving us the confidence to recommend the best options across a variety of price points.

So, if you’re looking for a great HDR monitor, look no further, we have all the latest recommendations.

Best HDR monitor: our top picks

What is HDR and why it’s worth the investment?

HDR stands for high dynamic range, a feature found in modern TVs and monitors that allows the display to produce a wider range of color, contrast, and brightness.

This relatively common feature is now seen across numerous displays within today’s market, offering up a more realistic color experience that is great for both gaming and content consumption. When enabled, HDR displays will utilize a wider color gamut which allows the panel to display a greater range of contrast and color. This not only produces a more authentic color experience but also adds a greater level of vibrance to the content you’re viewing.

Additionally, ‘true’ HDR displays also offer a higher peak brightness which enables the panel to excel in both light and darkroom conditions.

What are the different HDR standards?

That said, not all HDR displays are built equal. VESA, the Video Electronics Standards Association, has spent years certifying HDR-enabled monitors with a performance tier system to determine the different levels of HDR performance a panel provides.

The tier system is as follows:

HDR Performance Hierarchy By Tier 1

The VESA Certified DisplayHDR tier system starts at ‘DisplayHDR 400’ and goes up to ‘DisplayHDR 500 True Black’ – with each step up the theoretical HDR ladder offering a better, more realistic HDR experience. Of course, monitors that offer the highest levels of HDR reproduction (DisplayHDR 500 True Black/DisplayHDR 1400) will often come with a fairly large price premium to match. That being said, if you prioritize colors and image quality, a ‘True’ HDR experience is hard to beat.

Is HDR good for gaming?

On average, HDR is considered extremely good for gaming – especially if you’re a next-gen console gamer. As we eluded to earlier, using HDR when watching movies or gaming allows the display to enhance the richness of color, producing a much more realistic and immersive experience.

Some of the best gaming monitors available today feature HDR and it’s easy to see why. Additionally, with more HDR-enabled content becoming available nowadays – especially within the gaming space – it’s no surprise to see a spike in True HDR monitor interest.

Do all 4K monitors have HDR?

With HDR becoming hugely popular, it’s safe to say that the wide majority of 4K monitors offer some form of HDR functionality – especially in the 4K gaming monitor space. That said, there are only a few HDR monitors that offer the best VESA certifications – most of which come equipped with a large price premium.

That said, due to the ever-growing popularity of HDR in both games and general content, we’ll likely see the quality of HDR in monitors improve rapidly.

Monitor Key Features for Best Resolution and Color Detail HDR and Wide Color Gamut

Is HDR400 ‘True’ HDR?

One of the most frequently asked questions we receive is; is HDR400 ‘True’ HDR? And sadly, the answer is no.

As stated on the VESA DisplayHDR website, “If a monitor claims HDR support without a DisplayHDR performance specification, or refers to pseudo-specs like “HDR-400” instead of “DisplayHDR 400” it’s likely that the product does not meet the certification requirements.

For a ‘True’ HDR experience, a monitor (or display) mus be able to meet the following requirements:

  • True 8-bit image quality – on par with top 15% of PC displays today
  • Global dimming – improves dynamic contrast ratio
  • Peak luminance of 400 cd/m2 – up to 50% higher than typical SDR
  • Minimum requirements for color gamut and contrast exceed SDR

Some sources also say that a 95% DCI-P3 color gamut is a minimum requirement of ‘True’ HDR – a feature that will allow a TV or monitor to showcase a much wider variety of colors when compared to the standard 99% sRGB.

How we choose the best HDR monitors

Choosing the best HDR monitor can often be a tricky task, especially when you consider just how many great monitors reside in today’s market. Luckily, our veteran team of display enthusiasts has a tonne of experience when it comes to gaming TVs and monitors, allowing us to handpick the best options out there.

Like every component we recommend, every HDR monitor we choose also goes through a strict testing process that allows us to determine which is the best when it comes to console gaming, general content consumption, and everyday usage. We run numerous tests using purpose-built equipment that allows us to confidently recommend the best monitors across the web.

How we test monitors

Best HDR monitors in 2022