New external monitor for Macbook pro - Suggestions?

Hi all,

Because of the new curfew and rumored lockdown in France, I won’t be able to go to the office for at least a few weeks.
To make it easier to work from home I am looking for a monitor have a two screen setup (MBP 2018 + monitor).
I am so used to the retina display of my MacBook that I need a retina-like monitor.

-24 to 27"
-HiDPi so I figure I need 4k resolution
-usb-c connection
-for work only, no gaming

I was thinking about the LG UltraFine 27UN83A-W but I don’t know much about monitors.
Any suggestions?

The last one, I bought was a “LG Monitor 27UL850-W UHD-LED-Display 68,58 cm”, which has two HDMI and USB-C. Quite a nice one.


I have the smaller version (21"? - can’t recall). A bit pricy (probably compared to alternatives) but I’m very happy with it. Difficult to describe: looks like any other Apple retina :-). I believe it doesn’t have speakers or bad ones? I can’t remember either, as I never us built-in speakers …

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Thanks Christian and Jeannot.

According to Amazon that is the 2019 version and 27UN83A is the 2020 version. So it looks like I’m making the right choice.

I agree it is pricy (449€ on Amazon) compared to others but seems to be the best choice, unless someone else has other suggestions.

I looked at the LG ultrafine 24" (24MD4KL) and it is either out of stock or much more expensive than the 27". Seems LG discontinued that size.

There’s a rumor Apple is going to release a mid-range screen, but as expensive as the pro display.
But it’s only a rumor and I can’t wait unfortunately.

True, mine is 24" not 21" - When I bougth mine it was actually the opposite, the 27" was bought out. But as the the 24" was some 300 EURs cheaper I went for it, never regret the down sizing. I had a thunderbolt 27 before (but non retina). The former Apple original ones were more robust. LG is plastic … but there are good news too, you can better and easier change the height. I stopped looking for alternatives as it drove me nuts … tons of specifications but little news if it really runs fine on a MBP … :-(. And I wanted a “realistic” aspect ratio, non of those devices as wide as 2 screens etc … and very good monitors are price wise very close to the LGs.

The only thing I only tried once: LG is advertising that can you connect your iPad Pro via USB-C. This is working indeed. Though I don’t know that to do with it :-). And I just remember another feature, it has enough power via thunderbolt to at least guarantee that your battery will not drain. I hate having too many cables. I think the LG was the only one advertising that. But I am like you, not a monitor expert. Bought it during the very first lockdown as I wanted to have a retina screen.

If possible, I try to avoid Amazon.
There is usually another mail-order company here, which may have better conditions.

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I’m using a Samsung U28E590D with my MacBook and it’s quite nice.

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I’m running two Samsung U28E590 (older model than @Greg_O_Lone I think), one on HDMI and the other via a USB-C to DisplayPort adapter. Great 28" 4K displays.

Love my LG 34in 34UM95-P ultrawide with 3440x1440 IPS, and appreciate having three windows side by side (Safari, Xojo, Dash) to help with programming (Dash for quick lookups in the documentation, Safari if I need to search on the web for a solution, Xojo in the middle) …

I upgraded from the old apple thunderbolt 27" display to the “apple” (LG) UltraFine 5K display, and am very happy with it. The only downside is the price, but for something I spend mumble mumble hours a day looking at, I think it was worth it.

One thing to consider is that when running a non-retina display such as a 4K 27" display, macOS may actually render the image at a higher resolution and then downscale it. In some situations, the OS is having to render a 6K image to display it on your 4K monitor, which ultimately is slower than just rendering a 5K image to begin with.

So if your mac doens’t have strong GPU, you may find that a 4K monitor gives worse FPS than a true retina 5K monitor.

Edit to add: this also means that it’s important to test your software with a variety of DPI and actual pixel sizes, as performance on 1:1 or 2:1 may be different than a 3:2 screen. Similar issue on Windows, although Windows handles HiDPI completely differently.

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Another + why my money is with web development :-). As much as I embrace new technology, the needed testing for all and every possible scenario drives me crazy and I need far too little about external monitors for even knowing what I would need to test …

Web sovles some problems, but it doesn’t solve everything.

In fact, I discovered the weird GPU scaling / performance issues while developing a WebGL 3D animation engine. Also, with Web, you have a new set of variables you have to test for: Chrome vs. Safari vs. FireFox vs. Edge…

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I was more “kidding”. Plus you need to test Browsers per platform, and per release of those … well, at least in theory … a developer these days can spend more time with testing than actually developing :frowning:

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Thank you all for your suggestions.

I will get the LG 27UL850-W.


maybe these monitors are too big?
at what distance from your eyes do you place the screen?

will they work well even with a 1920x1080 notebook?

thank you.