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Ditch the higher resolutions and get the best 1080p monitor for your setup

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Finding the best monitor for your needs can be quite a daunting task. With so many options to choose from, it’s important to figure out exactly what you plan to use the monitor for and then go from there. In this case, we’re checking out the best 1080p monitors that you can find, as not everyone needs or wants the higher resolutions offered by the best 4K monitors.

Best 1080p Monitor Overall: Dell S2421HS

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The Dell S2421HS is our pick as the best 1080p monitor overall, as it’s already one of the best Dell monitors that money can buy thanks to the low price point adjustable stand and solid picture quality. You’ll find a faster 75Hz refresh rate, which is becoming the new standard for many monitors, and this pairs nicely with the ability to use either HDMI or DisplayPort when connecting to your computer.

Although the S2421HS is not exactly geared towards the gaming community, this monitor is compatible with AMD FreeSync. However, if you have one of the best NVIDIA graphics cards, you’ll miss out on NVIDIA G-Sync support. Three out of the four sides feature ultra-slim bezels, with the bottom bezel being a bit thicker due to the included buttons underneath and the Dell logo.

On the one hand, you have a monitor that is adjustable for better ergonomics, but some have stated that it’s a bit too flimsy considering how thick the display itself is. But that’s pretty much all you have to go on, considering that you won’t be able to use this with a VESA mount.

Pros:

  • 75Hz refresh rate
  • HDMI and DisplayPort options
  • AMD FreeSync compatible
  • Stand can be adjusted for ergonomics

Cons:

  • Stand may be a bit flimsy for some
  • Cannot be used with a VESA Mount

Best 1080p Monitor Overall

Dell S2421HS

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  • $160 at Amazon
  • $170 at Dell

The best option for everyone

The Dell S2421HS doesn’t disappoint as you can use either DisplayPort or HDMI. You’ll also find faster refresh rates and more.

Upgrade Pick: Dell S2721HGF

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Versatility is the name of the game when finding the best monitor for your computer, and that’s what helps make the Dell S2721HGF our “upgrade pick.” The monitor comes in either 24 or 27-inches, while sporting a 144Hz refresh rate for those gamers out there. The stand allows you to adjust the height and tilt, but if you don’t want to use a stand, you’ll be able to use this with your favorite VESA mount.

Going back to gamers, this is a great budget gaming monitor option, even with the 144Hz refresh rate. That’s because the S2721HGF is also compatible with both NVIDIA G-Sync and AMD FreeSync, so it doesn’t matter which of the best graphics cards you have in your PC build.

It seems that the biggest complaint with the S2721HGF is that you may need to tune the picture quality after receiving the monitor. Dell doesn’t have the greatest track record for providing color accuracy out of the box, but you can tune the profile yourself. We also would have liked to see the newer DisplayPort v1.4 on this monitor, as there are just too many limitations with DP v1.2. These include slower data transmission speeds, along with being more than 10 years old at this point.

Pros:

  • 144Hz refresh rate
  • Comes in either 24-inch or 27-inches
  • Compatible with both NVIDIA G-Sync and AMD FreeSync
  • Height and tilt adjustable
  • Can be used with VESA mounts

Cons:

  • Picture quality may need to be tuned via software
  • Uses greatly-outdated DisplayPort v1.2

Upgrade Pick

Dell S2721HGF

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  • $230 at Amazon
  • $230 at Dell
  • $280 at Best Buy

If you want an upgraded model

If you want an upgraded monitor, the Dell S2721HGF fits the bill. This monitor is great for gamers and productivity-ists alike.

Best Value: Sceptre E248W-19203R

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If you want a basic 1080p monitor without any extra frills, then the Sceptre E248-19203R is the way to go. The monitor is compatible with VESA mounts so that you can put this anywhere on your desk or in your home. It’s also slim and lightweight, so you won’t have to worry about it weighing down too much on your likely overcrowded desk already.

Just like some of the best cheap monitors, this one from Sceptre isn’t directly aimed at gamers. However, it features a slightly faster 75Hz refresh rate than most of your basic monitors out there. There are even built-in speakers for those who don’t want to use headphones or don’t have standard desk speakers.

Since this Sceptre monitor is lightweight and slim, that means that sacrifices had to be made elsewhere. The monitor’s build may come off as “cheap,” thanks to the plastic material used in the stand and on the back of the monitor itself. And if you were hoping to use DisplayPort over HDMI, you’re out of luck as there are only two HDMI ports available to go along with the VGA input, which you likely won’t be using.

Pros:

  • Compatible with VESA mounts
  • 75Hz refresh rate
  • Built-in speakers
  • Slim and lightweight

Cons:

  • No DisplayPort options
  • Not the greatest build quality

Best Value

Sceptre E248W-19203R

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  • $121 at Amazon
  • $121 at Walmart

It may be cheap, but it’s still great

This monitor from Sceptre is a great option for those who want a solid and cheap monitor for their current desk setup.

Best 1080p Monitor for Gaming: Alienware AW2521HF

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Now we get to the fun stuff. A lot of the other monitors that are featured here already sport faster refresh rates than the 60Hz industry standard. However, with the Alienware AW2521HF, that gets turned up to 11 with the 240Hz refresh rate to go along with the 1ms response time. It doesn’t take long to see why this is one of the best gaming monitors, even with a lower 1080p resolution.

In addition to the faster refresh rates and ultra-low response times, the AW2521HF is perfect for all PC gamers, thanks to its compatibility with AMD FreeSync and NVIDIA G-Sync. And if that wasn’t apparent enough already, then the included customizable RGB lights on the back of the monitor will definitely help you torch the competition. There are even four USB-A ports built-in, including one that can be used as a charger for your smartphone if you end up needing it.

Like many other options in Dell’s standard and gaming lineup of monitors, the AW2521HF uses the older DisplayPort v1.2. So you might end up running into potential issues with reaching those faster refresh rates even when using the superior DisplayPort compared to HDMI. Another issue comes down to desk space, as the included stand is rather wide and bulky, but you can use a VESA mount if you want to reclaim some of that precious desk space.

Pros:

  • Up to 240Hz refresh rate
  • 1ms response time
  • Compatible with AMD FreeSync and NVIDIA G-Sync
  • Four total USB-A ports with battery charging
  • RGB lights can be customized

Cons:

  • Uses old DisplayPort v1.2
  • Included stand is big and bulky

Best 1080p Monitor for Gaming

Alienware AW2521HF

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  • $380 at Amazon
  • $380 at Dell
  • $380 at Best Buy

Game for hours and hours on end

With its 240Hz refresh rate and 1ms response time, the Alienware AW2521HF has everything a gamer could want and more.

Upgrade Pick for Gaming: ASUS ROG Swift PG259QN

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Those looking for a gaming monitor with practically no compromises will definitely love the ASUS ROG Swift PG259QN. This monitor screams with its 360Hz refresh rate, which is faster than any other monitor you’ll find on this list. HDR10 compatibility is on the list of features as well, meaning you’ll be able to enjoy your games and video content in the best quality possible, short of using one of the best 4K monitors.

Cable management is extremely important because you don’t want to deal with a bunch of cables just hanging off the back of your desk. Thankfully, ASUS has a cable route built into the stand, so you can plug everything in and route them neatly to the power strip and your computer. As for connectivity, you’ll find HDMI and DisplayPort v1.4, ensuring that you’ll be able to reach those faster refresh rates, along with giving you a couple of options.

Speaking of a couple of options, that’s all that you have with the ROG Swift PG259QN. There is just a single DisplayPort option and a single HDMI port, so if you want more than that, you might want to look into using a KVM switch to connect more than two devices. The other potential hiccup comes down to the question of whether you really need a 360Hz display, as it may not even be noticeable compared to the 240Hz rate.

Pros:

  • Up to 360Hz refresh rate
  • Compatible with VESA mounts
  • HDR10 compatibility
  • Uses either HDMI or DisplayPort v1.4
  • Built-in cable management

Cons:

  • Only two display connection options
  • 360Hz might not be noticeable for some

Upgrade Pick for Gaming

ASUS ROG Swift PG259QN

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  • $700 at Amazon
  • $700 at Best Buy
  • $700 at Newegg

Practically perfect, but might be too much

Although the 360Hz refresh rate might seem like overkill, the ASUS ROG Swift PG259QN has all of the features one could want.

Best Ultrawide 1080p Monitor: LG 29WN600-W

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Ultrawide monitors are the dream, as you get more screen real estate without needing to add multiple monitors to your setup. That’s why we are huge fans of the LG 29WN600, as this monitor provides a gorgeous 21:9 display, giving you all of the extra pixels that you need. It’s clear from the jump that this is designed with productivity in mind, thanks to the Screen Split software that allows you to split the display into different sections.

If you don’t want to deal with the stand, since it’s limited by only being adjusted by tilting, the 29WN600 is compatible with most 100×100 VESA mounts. This will free up some desk space, along with ensuring that you have the most ergonomic setup possible.

There’s really not much else to complain about when it comes to the LG 29WN600, other than maybe the thick bottom bezel. But LG makes up for that with ultra-thin bezels around the other three sides of the display. Nevertheless, this is a great option if you want to get one of the best ultrawide monitors for your desk setup.

Pros:

  • HDR 10 compatible
  • Can be used with VESA mounts
  • 21:9 aspect ratio provides more screen real estate
  • Screen Split software can be useful

Cons:

  • Stand only allows for tilt adjustments
  • Thick bottom bezel

Best Ultrawide 1080p Monitor

LG 29WN600-W

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  • $200 at Amazon
  • $250 at Walmart
  • $227 at B&H Photo

Perfect combination for productivity and gaming

If you’re looking for an ultrawide monitor, you can call off the search with the amazing LG 29WN600-W and its 21:9 aspect ratio.

Ultrawide Monitor Upgrade Pick: Samsung CJ890

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There are ultrawide monitors, and then there are Super Ultrawide Monitors, and the Samsung CJ890 falls firmly in the latter category. The display measures in at a massive 49-inches, providing all of the screen real estate one could want, short of opting for one of the best TVs instead of a monitor. You’ll get the same 1080p resolution as you might expect, although this monitor sports a total resolution of 3840 x 1080.

This monitor really is full of tricks, as you’ll find faster 144Hz refresh rates for those gamers out there. Plus, DisplayPort, HDMI, or USB-C ports can be used to connect your desktop or laptop to this behemoth. There’s even a built-in KVM switch that allows you to connect multiple devices and switch between the two seamlessly with just a press of a button.

The biggest downside to getting the Samsung CJ890 has nothing to do with the performance. Instead, it comes down to the sheer size of this monitor. If you really want a Super Ultrawide Monitor, you might want to consider upgrading your current desk set up to handle this bad boy. There’s also the question of price, as a monitor this size is rather expensive compared to the other options on this list.

Pros:

  • 49-inch Super Ultra-Wide Display
  • 144Hz Refresh rate
  • Uses HDMI, DisplayPort, or USB-C
  • Features integrated KVM switch

Cons:

  • May be too large for your desk
  • Expensive

Ultrawide Monitor Upgrade Pick

Samsung CJ890

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  • $980 at Amazon
  • $1,000 at B&H Photo

Enjoy the extra pixels with this Super Ultrawide monitor

Super ultrawide monitors are becoming more popular, and it’s due to how well the Samsung CJ890 performs with its 49-inch display.

Best 1080p Monitor for Portability: ASUS ZenScreen MB16AC

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If you primarily use a laptop for all of your work and games, you might want to consider a portable monitor. While macOS and iPadOS owners can use SideCar, Windows users and the best Chromebooks can’t do the same thing. But with a portable monitor like the ASUS ZenScreen MB16AC, you’ll be able to get some extra space and connect it to your laptop with just a single USB-C cable.

With the ZenScreen, you don’t have to worry about plugging in any extra cables for power. Just a single USB-C cable from your laptop to the portable monitor provides all the power you need. This helps keep the ultra-slim and sleek design of the ZenScreen, and you don’t have to worry about finding a stand to prop it up. ASUS includes a protective cover with the ZenScreen, which doubles as a stand so you can prop it up and put it wherever you need it. It’s easy to see why this is one of the best Raspberry Pi monitors, along with being one of the best 1080p monitors.

There’s only so much you can ask for when checking out a portable monitor. That’s why you’ll be limited to a 60Hz refresh rate, but that’s not a big deal-breaker unless you wanted to use this with something like the PS5 or Xbox Series X. Additionally, the included case is extremely convenient. Still, it’s not the most rugged case out there, so you’ll need to be a bit more careful when traveling with this monitor.

Pros:

  • Requires USB-C for power and video transmission
  • Ultra-slim design
  • Protective case included
  • Case doubles as stand for monitor

Cons:

  • 60Hz refresh rate
  • Included case is not the most rugged option

Best 1080p Monitor for Portability

ASUS ZenScreen MB16AC

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  • $220 at Amazon
  • $231 at Best Buy
  • $229 at Walmart

Added versatility through portability

Adding a second screen to your laptop setup can be extremely handy, and that’s where the ASUS ZenScreen MB16AC excels.

Bottom line

Finding the best 1080p monitor can feel like finding a needle in a haystack, but the Dell S2421HS is that needle in the haystack. The monitor features a faster 75Hz refresh rate to go along with an adjustable stand for the best ergonomics. Plus, you won’t have to worry about bezels getting in the way, at least for three out of the four sides with this slim and sleek design.

On top of the slightly faster-than-average refresh rates, Dell also packed AMD FreeSync support in the S2421HS. This makes it a great option regardless of whether you’re trying to find the best gaming monitor or just one of the best cheap monitors to add to your desk setup. The biggest thing that you’ll miss out on is the ability to use one of the best monitor arm mounts since the S2421HS does not support VESA mounting.

Credits — The team that worked on this guide

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Andrew Myrick is a regular freelancer at Android Central. He has been a tech enthusiast ever since the original iPhone was released and continues to flip-flop between devices. You might as well hook him up to an IV filled with coffee to get him through the day. If you have any questions, you can find him on Twitter, and he’ll get back to you.

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