It is very important to have a great monitor for photo editing. If you’re not sure which one is right for you, then don’t worry. Here we compiled a list of the top 9 monitors under $500 with quality reviewed.
We All Know, Photo editing is one of the leading and most needed crafts of our time. The digital world is in constant need of good pictures and videos. No brand or company can think of a successful future if their marketing skills are poor, and one of the most wanted skills in marketing is photo editing.
So if you are doing photo editing or want to be a photo editor, then you must know your tools. Apart from the photography skills, a good editor knows he relies very much on his laptop and monitor.
So in this article, we have selected some of the finest monitors that can be a game-changer for your photo editing skill. However, before we start, we would advise each reader to consider his personal needs before choosing any monitor for photo editing so that he may be able to perform better.
Table of Contents
Top Monitor for photo editing under $500
Below are the reviews of the best monitors for photo editing under $500, and then to make it a complete review guide, we have a quick buying guide too. So let us get going.
1. BenQ PD2700U 4K Monitor (27 Inch) under 500
Brand: BenQ | Size: 27 Inches | Resolution: 3840 x 2160 | Refresh Rate: 60 Hz | Response Time: 5 ms | Brightness: 350 nits | Ports: HDMI 2.0 , DisplayPort 1.4 , 3.5mm Audio Out , USB 3.0
- Comes with various modes.
- Comes with connectivity cables.
- Easy to set dual view.
- Safe for the eyes, with low blue light.
- Minimum flicker.
- The default setup is very confusing.
- Setting wires is a mess.
Getting a flawless monitor for photo editing is imperative. Otherwise, you might end up editing the photo’s Color wrongly. The 4k display is a much-needed feature, and BenQ monitors have this feature sorted for you. Using this monitor did not make us feel that any side, even the edges of our picture were not focused correctly. The color and shade uniformity was excellent.
Then it is a UHD display, even though many people prefer having a QHD or FHD but this time, getting a UHD display means that the 4K display will work fine. Combining 4k with a UHD screen means an explosion of color and display. So here we are with both.
The screen resolution was perfect, and not even a single pixel was discolored. You can really level up your photo editing game with this monitor.
Then another impressive feature was the connectivity. Making a PC with the BenQ PD2700 is not an issue at all. It has all the needed ports. However, the only thing that annoyed me a bit was the location of the ports. They are too inside the monitor. If unluckily any of them get stuck, you will need to disconnect the entire monitor. So we would advise you to first plug in all the wires and then place the monitor.
Then for the color accuracy, the 100% RGB is true. We have tried and tested various types of images. It actually gives you this wide range of colors.
Even though setting it was hard, thanks to the company, they had sent the cables along with the package. Lastly, the HDR 10 is a cherry on top for the editors, as they will first need to view the image with its actual colors and then edit.
The screen size is also just fine. Even though many people might consider a larger screen, I feel this is the ideal size.
2. ASUS ProArt Display PA278QV
Brand: Asus | Size: 27 Inches | Resolution: 2560 x 1440 | Refresh Rate: 75 Hz | Response Time: 5 ms | Brightness: 350 nits | Ports: HDMI 1.4 , Mini DisplayPort 1.2, DisplayPort 1.2, Dual-link DVI-D
- Comes with all the necessary ports.
- VESA mountable.
- Comes with height adjustment.
- Ideal response rate.
- Good 2W speakers.
- Easy to adapt with the Apple MacBook.
- The user interface is a bit confusing.
Sometimes, one gets bored while looking in the same direction, or in other cases, it is the picture that requires a different angle for proper editing. So this is a tiltable monitor with a swivel. You may change its position according to your choice.
In reality, it is a bit hard to put it vertically, but this is one of the least used sides, so it might not affect your work. Otherwise, it is pretty easy to change the sides. Then the 100% sRGB ensures that each photo or video editor gets to see the image properly without missing a single shade. Additionally, they say that it is approved by calman too.
This model is available in various sizes, but we had tried the 27 inches screen with QHD wide angle. So far, it is one of the best combinations, even better than the UHD. There is a mini display port too, which will ensure that you can easily showcase your work whenever you want.
As I wished to check this monitor for various photo editing-related work therefore I had to use the preset. Believe me, and it is one of the finest user interfaces and user experience presets. You do not need to search for the right buttons. This application is just fine to save your time and energy.
Then there is the ProArt palette. It will allow you to see the colors of your choice. Like when I was editing a police scene, so I wished to have the blue hues on my screen. With this efficient color palette doing so became a fun experience.
The reason why it is a good choice for a photo editor under 500 dollars is the picture alignment. You can easily set the required alignment of your choice. It is indeed a very friendly monitor for both photos and video editors.
3. BenQ PD2500Q 1440p IPS Monitor
Brand: BenQ | Size: 25 Inches | Resolution: 2560 x 1440 | Refresh Rate: 60 Hz | Response Time: 4 ms | Brightness: 350 nits | Ports: HDMI 1.4 , Mini DisplayPort 1.2, DisplayPort 1.2, 3.5mm Output , USB
- Comes in various different modes.
- Comes with a display pilot for easy work.
- Adjustable height.
- Ergonomic design.
- Lightweight design.
- Safe for the eyes.
- It flickers a lot.
Are you a fan of minimalistic designs? Mean if You do not want to have that gaming PC look on your PC table, then the BenQ PD2500Q would be a good choice for you. It has a slim body and a modern contemporary design.
The company has given us a three-year warranty, and you do not need to worry about the quality. In case you do not like it, the company will replace the faulty one as soon as possible. However, many of my colleagues have complained about the customer service, but for the color accuracy you get through the BenQ monitors, you should take this risk.
Even though the response rate is not as great as of a gaming laptop, a 4 ms response rate is just fine for all the monitors that are designed for photo editing.
The universal HDMI port was a lifesaver for me, as I needed to connect various devices with the monitor. Sometimes my playstation too; however, more than that, it was needed to present my work in various gatherings too.
While using this monitor, I had this one thing in my mind, if 2K would go right with the QHD display. To my surprise, it has been a good experience. Usually, 4k resolution works fine with a QHD display, but there is always room for exception.
I can safely say that this monitor is fine for commercial purposes as, unlike most regular monitors, it comes with Delta E<3, which will make it super easy for the editor to understand even the minute changes.
You get an animation mode too, which is a plus for advanced photo editing. Those working as a vlogger and influencers are in dire need of this mode. For photo editing, this is the best monitor under $500.
4. ViewSonic VP2768a Monitor
Brand: ViewSonic | Size: 27 Inches | Resolution: 2560 x 1440 | Refresh Rate: 60 Hz | Response Time: 0.4ms | Brightness: 350 nits | Ports: HDMI 1.4 , Mini DisplayPort 1.2, DisplayPort 1.2, 3.5mm Output , USB 2.0
- VESA compatible.
- Safe for the eyes.
- Borderless design.
- Daisy chain enabled monitor.
- Moveable monitor.
- Very lightweight.
- Menu control is difficult to set.
- Bad built quality.
Are you tired of connecting a lot of wires to your PC? Then this would be the finest model for you, as it comes with a cable cutter technique. You only need a single cable for sound, audio, and video. So no mess. It is an ideal monitor for art lovers and one of the best budget photo editing monitors under $500.
Then the refresh rate is quite ideal. You can easily connect it with a heavy GPU. Those who use online applications can use this monitor pretty easily, as it comes with a 120Hz turbo refresh rate. However, you will need to preset it, as the default refresh rate is only 60Hz.
One more thing which might make you buy this monitor is the borderless design. Many pro photo editors, who tend to edit very minutely, will prefer having two to three monitors at a time. So if you are among them, then having this monitor can make your day.
Unlike most expensive monitors, this one has the same level of luminosity. This means you will not feel that some parts of the picture, especially the edges are darker than the center. It is indeed one of the most needed features for photo editing.
The best mode for any designer and photo editor in this monitor is the designer mode. You do not have to step realty set everything for editing; instead, you may go for the simple model, and everything will be set already.
As far as the color accuracy is concerned, it is a bit disappointing for me, being a professional editor. It has the delta E>2 color accuracy, which is undoubtedly great for beginners and intermediate photo editors.
5. Philips 276E8VJSB 4K UHD IPS Monitor
Brand: Philips | Size: 27 Inches | Resolution: 2560 x 1440 | Refresh Rate: 60 Hz | Response Time: 0.4ms | Brightness: 350 nits | Ports: HDMI 2.0 , DisplayPort 1.2 , 3.5 mm Audio Out
- Narrow bezels.
- Easy to set and stylish.
- Built-in sound setup.
- It is not VESA mountable.
Here we are again with a UHD and 4k Monitor. Honestly speaking, if you are unable to find a 4k QHD, then the best option will be a 4k UHD. Other than that, the main reason why I would get this monitor is its ergonomic round stand. Even though it is not a curved monitor, to give it strong support they have made a sturdy curved base for it, and it is worthy of consideration.
You can easily use this monitor for TV as well, given its aesthetics. The thin borders are also a sign of beauty here. I hope you can imagine having such a minimal design at your computer table.
Keeping in view the screen size, claiming it to be the finest choice is not wrong. A 27 inches screen means that you will get to see through the details properly. Even though the QHD will be a fine choice for larger screens, here, the purpose of the screen defines the ideal screen size.
Then it has the multiview technology too, which is an essential feature for any editor. You will not need to open various tabs again and again. Instead, a single screen will be enough for comparison, and editing.
The description says, it is a flicker-free technology, but when I was using it, sometimes I felt a slight flickering. So I feel there will be some issues after some time.
6. ASUS VP32UQ 4K HDR Monitor
Brand: Asus | Size: 31.5 Inches | Resolution: 3840 x 2160 | Refresh Rate: 60 Hz | Response Time: 4ms | Brightness: 350 nits | Ports: HDMI 2.0 , DisplayPort 1.2 , 3.5 mm Audio Out
- Two in one monitor.
- Ideal for streaming too.
- Smooth screen display.
- Colour uniformity.
- Safe for the eyes.
- It is a bit fuzzy sometimes.
If you tend to get bigger projects, then chances are that you will need a wider screen. Working on a 27 inches screen will take more time. Therefore, the ASUS 31.5 inches screen will be a fine choice then. However, do not decide before you read this review.
It is not only an ideal monitor for the Photo editors, but also for gamers, and streamers. It is a free and G-sync compatible monitor. You can easily connect it with a GPU. Using a GPU for photo editing will make things very smooth for you. Just like the gamers, your screen will scream each color.
More than that, it is an adjustable monitor. You can tilt it pretty easily, for a better and change view. Then it has a UHD screen with a 4K resolution. Thus, ensuring that you get a fine display. However, when I was using this monitor to edit through some online application, I observed a little issue, the images and GIFs start flickering. So I am not sure if this device will work fine for the video editors too.
Moreover, one fun thing which I really adored was the cinema and the gaming mode. Thus, making this monitor a multi-purpose device for part-time gamers. It is generally believed that a gaming monitor will be the finest choice for photo editing, but that is not the case every time. However, here the users will get both experiences.
Additionally, those who always get worried whenever they get a new technical device, do not have to worry this time. As the package has every accessory, you would need to set this up.
This is the best monitor for photo editing under $500 if you want a monitor that is good for your eyes.
7. INNOCN 29C1F Ultrawide Monitor
Brand: Innocn | Size: 29 Inches | Resolution: 2560 x 1080 | Refresh Rate: 75 Hz | Response Time: 5ms | Brightness: 350 nits | Ports: HDMI, DisplayPort , 3.5 mm Audio Out
- Ultra-wide screen.
- More number of ports.
- TUV certified monitor for eye care.
- IPS display.
- Reliable speakers.
- VESA mountable.
- Connection cables are pretty short.
Working on an ultra-widescreen that has a different ratio makes you feel different from others. I don’t know why, but using this monitor made me think that my work would bear different results.
This is a unique resolution monitor with WFHD. Just like the wide QHD, the WFHD is the wide full HD display. The best thing about this monitor is the picture by picture feature. You can easily connect more than one device to the monitor and have a separate view of each device’s display. Thus, it increases your productivity. Then for some people, it has a picture-in-picture feature as well. Photo editors would need it the most when upgrading the edited pictures to review and compare.
Another thing which might make you get such a monitor is the number of ports. One can easily connect as many devices as they want through USB ports. It, however, comes with a single display port. You will need to connect other devices through some software or Bluetooth.
You can move this monitor in whatever direction you want. Tilt it, use the pivot, or try swivel. It can move in all directions very easily. Overall, it is a great choice for people who need to work fast and do not have time.
8. Philips Curved Frameless UltraWide (346E2CUAE)
Brand: Philips | Size: 34 Inches | Resolution: 3440 x 1440 | Refresh Rate: 100 Hz | Response Time: 4ms (GtG) | Brightness: 300 nits | Ports: DisplayPort 1.2, HDMI 1.4, USB-C , Headphone Jack
- Comes with a cable holder.
- Easy to set.
- Comes with the option of multiview.
- 1.5m curved for more focus.
- Good contrast and brightness.
- Strong stand.
- Speakers are useless.
Are you tired of losing your focus? Then it is high time to get a curved monitor to get that focus back. The Philips curved monitor is a fine choice for those who wish to connect more than one monitor for video or photo editing.
The screen size is just perfect for the big picture works. It comes with a 34 inches screen, which is on point in terms of resolution too. I was expecting a WQHD, but here we have a combination of 4k and QHD, it is truly the finest one when your goal is to get a screen for photo editing. Otherwise, there will be a need for a GPU.
Unlike the most regular monitors, described as suitable for photo editing. This one is designed with 121% sRGB.
Then it has a 1 ms, which was really hard to find for this category of monitors. You will usually get a 4 ms or 3 ms. To check the reliability of this 1 ms response rate, I used those monitors for live streaming, and believe me, it worked super fine.
The built-in speakers are also of good quality. Initially, I had placed this monitor a bit away from me, because it is a large screen, then it was hard for me to listen properly. Even though the speakers are fine, I still believe that they should have done better. The sole reason for that is the distance. The user will not be putting a large curved monitor close to them, thus, it will be difficult for them to sense the sound.
The overall look of the monitor is very impressive, it has that bold contemporary look, which will suit the personality of some professional photographers. It is an excellent choice for those looking for the best Ultrawide monitors under $500 price tag.
9. Sceptre UltraWide QHD Monitor (E345B-QUT168)
Brand: Sceptre | Size: 34 Inches | Resolution: 3440 x 1440 | Refresh Rate: 144 Hz | Response Time: 1 ms | Brightness: 350 nits | Ports: HDMI 1.4 , HDMI 2.0 , DisplayPort 1.4 , Audio Out
- Compatible with AMD freesync.
- Minimum response time.
- Comes with two types of HDMI ports.
- Adjustable blue light.
- Easy to assemble.
- Does not come with an anti-glare surface.
An ultrawide QHD monitor is something every professional would need, be it a photo editor, or anyone whose work depends on the monitor’s screen. For me, it is a larger-than-life experience, because using a 34 inches screen for work is unusual.
Someone, who wants color accuracy and needs to create something different from the original image would need this big screen. Just like the full QHD, it comes with the 1440p for the vertical side, but for the horizontal, it is 3440p resolution.
All its specs resemble a gaming monitor. The 144Hz refresh rate with 1 ms is something you would get in a gaming monitor. So those who wish to get a monitor that resembles in specs the gaming monitor can get this one.
Even though other spectre monitors have a simple user interface, this one was quite confusing. I wanted to change the default refresh rate to 144Hz, but it took me almost 20 minutes to get there.
As far as physically setting this monitor is concerned. So it was very easy. The package includes screws and some cables. VESA mounting is possible, but you need to arrange everything separately for that.
One thing which I did not try because after checking so many monitors, I can surely say that it is possible with this model. That is the borderless screen. It has very thin bezels, and you can put it beside other monitors and still get a good visual.
The Budget Monitors for Photo Editing – Buyer Guide
Photo editing can be a fun experience if the devices used are the best. So to choose a reliable monitor we are here to share a brief buying guide. You can add some more features to this list as per personal choices, but these are the imperatives.
What would you do if the screen you use does not let you focus on your work? Even though many people say that the larger the screen the better it is, that is not the whole truth. For many people who need to focus on minute details, smaller screens are better.
Any screen that is between 27 inches would be a fine choice for photo editing.
However, professionals who get bigger projects can go for more than 31 inches screens, but there as well, the users will need special applications to keep a check on minor details.
Currently, there are two types of screens, simple and curved. To be honest, I don’t think there is any benefit in getting a curved screen for photo editing. Straight and simple monitors are fine for this task. However, if you feel that you need to focus on your work, and you are working at an office. Then a curved screen can help.
How would you understand the minor details on the screen with minimum resolution? You should get a 4k or 3k resolution screen for ideal photo editing.
It is also subjective. Those who plan to do big projects will need monitors with no borders so that they may easily use that with other monitors.
It is extremely important for a photo editor to compare the original photo with the edited one. Therefore, any screen that allows the multiview would be a great blessing for him.
If you are using an online application for editing photos, then it is very important to get a monitor with a minimum response rate. Otherwise, a response rate of 4 ms or 5ms would be fine.
Currently, there are different companies having different gamuts. However, the standard one that would ensure the color quality is sRGB. A 99% to 121% sRGB will be perfect for picture editing.
Buying a monitor is not simple, as it will reflect your PC’s entire performance. For photo editors, screens and monitors are the essential articles in a PC; therefore, they must check all the necessary features before buying. In addition to that, it is also a subjective choice, and your level of work will also decide which monitor suits you the best.
The ideal size would be between 27 inches to 34 inches for photo editing monitors.
Yes, they can be a fine choice for photo editing.