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The best curved monitors for 2020

If you’ve never used a curved monitor before, you might not understand the hype. Much like a curved flat-screen, a curved monitor is a popular choice for gamers or anyone who enjoys watching videos on their computer. The unique design can step up your gameplay or make your favorite movie feel all that much more immersive. 

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With so many different brands on the market and a variety of features, pricing, and specs to compare, choosing the right curved monitor might be overwhelming. Fortunately, you don’t need to wade through all the information—we’ve already reviewed these top picks for you.

At a glance

The best curved monitor overall: BenQ EX3501R

Why should you buy this: It’s an excellent monitor for color and brightness, perfect for viewing images and video.

Who’s it for: Everyone, but with a special focus on gamers and those who use their computer for entertainment

Why we picked the BenQ EX3501R:

The BenQ EX3501R combines a large, 35-inch monitor with a very affordable price for such a high-end ultrawide. It comes with HDR support, BenQ’s EyeCare settings for reducing eye strain, 100Hz refresh rate, and FreeSync. We were especially impressed with the brightness and color accuracy of this screen (100% of sRGB and 82% of AdobeRGB), which offers vivid images for gaming and videos — and, of course, any work you might be doing on the monitor. Ports include USB-C, HDMI, DisplayPort, and two USB-A ports, enough for all your connection needs. It’s a great ultrawide that’s made for everyone, and an easy recommendation if you’re not sure where to turn.

The best professional curved monitor: Dell Ultrasharp U3818DW

Why should you buy this: It’s a durable, versatile monitor with an extra-wide screen and great color.

Who’s it for: People looking for one of the biggest monitors available, or like strong monitor controls.

Why we picked the Dell Ultrasharp U3818DW:

Dell’s hefty monitor comes with some extra size, a particularly large, 38-inch WQHD+ ultrawide that won’t wobble on your desk, assuming you’ve made enough room for it (VESA mount options are also included). Dell Ultrasharp U3818DW offers a 3,840 x 1,600 resolution, 60Hz refresh rate, and easy, on-model buttons/joystick on the underside that make it simple to switch between modes. Ports include two HDMI, DisplayPort, and USB-C. We also noted that the model comes with a wide color gamut, albeit with a just so-so contrast ratio. There is no FreeSync, making this giant better suited for work tasks than gaming.

The monitor with best color accuracy: Samsung CJ791

Why should you buy this: This Samsung monitor is easily one of the best ultra-wides we’ve ever seen.

Who’s it for: People who like big curves and lots of color accuracy.

Why we picked the Samsung CJ791:

Samsung’s excellent 34-inch model brings an incredible contrast ratio, 100Hz refresh rate, 4ms response time, and 3,440 x 1,440 resolution. Samsung’s quantum dot technology adds extra sharpness to the display, and color accuracy meets 100% of sRGB and 85% of AdobeRGB—in other words, the color looks great.

We were also fans of the elegant design, easy-access ports, and the clear, detailed menu controls for adjusting color and switching between different modes.  Ports include two HDMI 2.0 ports, a DisplayPort 1.4, and two USB connections: Recent updates to this model also added Thunderbolt 3 support for one of the USB connections, giving you options for ultrafast data transfer or powering accessories.

If you want one of the best pictures that a curved ultrawide can provide, the Samsung CJ791 is worth saving up for. However, note that it’s a bit more friendly with games than with streaming services, which can struggle to fit properly to the outsized screen and its somewhat unusual resolution. To help with this, Samsung include picture-by-picture and picture-in-picture modes that make the display more versatile.

The best gaming curved monitor: Alienware AW3418DW

Alienware AW341BDW Utrawide Gaming Monitor
Rich Shibley/Digital Trends

Why should you buy this: Alienware’s unique monitor pushes the limits with an overclockable screen.

Who’s it for: Gamers, PC builders, and those with big desktop dreams

Why we picked the Alienware AW3418DW:

You can expect an Alienware monitor to be good at games, and this 34-inch curved monitor does impress, with an overclockable to 120Hz refresh rate, G-Sync, and an expansive menu system with plenty of different modes and color control options (as well as a handy, four-mode dark stabilizer). Color accuracy is excellent and brightness is so impressive you’ll probably have to turn it down for most games. Ports include USB 3.0, USB with power charging, HDMI, and DisplayPort, but alas, no USB-C. For those who need G-Sync and want a curved ultrawide for the best gaming experience, the Alienware AW3418DW monitor is one of the best options available!

The best Best affordable curved monitor: BenQ EX3200R

BenQ EX3200R review screen
Tomas Patlan/Digital Trends

Why should you buy this: It’s an affordable monitor that offers great features despite its low price tag.

Who’s it for: Those looking to save, gamers on a budget, people who don’t mind 1080p.

Why we picked the BenQ EX3200R:

Let’s say you want some of these great monitor features like a curved screen and extra-large monitor, but your budget is a bit more limited. The BenQ EX3200R comes to your rescue with a low price tag but a robust feature set that pulls absolutely everything it can out of its 1080p resolution. The 32-inch screen comes with a 144Hz refresh rate, an incredible 2060:1 contrast ratio according to our own testing. While color accuracy is just average, there is a full set of control options and presets to play with. Ports include two HDMI 2.0, a DisplayPort 1.4, and a USB port. If you’re looking for low-cost monitors, put this one on your list.

The best combination of size and price: LG 38UC99

LG 38UC99
Bill Roberson/Digital Trends

Why should you buy this: This enormous monitor lets you wrap yourself in a display that has lots of connectivity options.

Who’s it for: People with plenty of desk room and big ambitions

Why we picked the LG 38UC99:

As if the LG’s super-large monitor and the 38-inch display aren’t enough, this model also delivers on extensive features such as the 75Hz refresh rate and the 3,840 x 1,600 resolution. Tack on FreeSync technology, 100% sRGB color accuracy, 332 lux brightness, and 78% AdobeRGB, and you’ve got some great numbers to work with. 

Connectivity, however, is impressive with ports that include two USB-A, a USB-C, DisplayPort 1.2, and two HDMI 2.0. You’ll get a lot from the LG 38UC99, but the most important thing is to make sure you’ve got the space to store it—otherwise, all those features will just be going to waste.

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