LG 27UD88

The MacBook and MacBook Pro have excellent displays on their own, but if you need a second or bigger display, there's none better than the LG 27UD88, which is reasonably priced and made by one of the best and most innovative display manufacturers in the game.

Our Pick

LG 27UD88

The best USB-C monitor for most people.

This 4K monitor is hands-down the best USB-C monitor for the price to complement your Mac experience. Via one cable — USB-C— you can power your MacBook, transfer video, and use the monitor as a USB hub, with the ability to interface with any peripheral you plug into the UD88's two USB 3.0 ports.

Why the LG 27UD88 is the best

You can calibrate the colors with your MacBook so that you glance back and forth between each screen and have it be seamless and pleasing to the eye. You also have 14 options for layout, so you can view multiple windows simultaneously — run your Apple TV via HDMI while using your MacBook! It comes with two USB-C ports, two USB-A ports, a DisplayPort port, and a USB 3.0 Quick Charge port.

As mentioned, the best part of this monitor is its ability to power your MacBook while acting as a display, so that you're not limited by your battery. You can often snag it on Amazon for around $500. It can even power the 13-inch MacBook Pro with ease (though it struggles to keep the 15-inch MacBook Pro juiced up more than a trickle during use).

Is it a good time to buy this monitor?

Though the UD88 is a few years old at this time, it's still a great monitor and the most well-rounded display for most people. In fact, because it's not the "new hotness" any longer, the price has dropped and you can get it for even less than you could in 2018.

Reasons to buy

  • Built-in USB hub for all your peripherals
  • Incredible value
  • Built-in USB 3.0 Quick Charge port
  • 60Hz refresh rate and 5ms response time
  • Gorgeous IPS panel with great viewing angles

Reasons not to buy

  • You need Thunderbolt 3 support
  • You need a display that charges the 15-inch MacBook Pro

A second monitor for your MacBook is more valuable than you think

While you likely bought your MacBook or MacBook Pro, in part, because of its gorgeous display, having an extra monitor can prove invaluable when it comes to productivity. If you're doing any type of graphic design, image editing, video editing, or any other type of production work, a quality monitor is golden.

Though golden this one is not, as the back of the UD2788 is totally white, very much leaning into Apple's aesthetic. That being said, if your desk is in the middle of a room, you may not dig the bright hardware.

That, and you can use your MacBook in "closed clamshell" mode, meaning you can have it just like a desktop, which is great for when the size limitations of your MacBook's screen hinder progress. Having a 4K monitor, like the LG 27UD88 is just the icing on the cake, allowing you to work with fine detail and with exceptional color.

Having a monitor with built-in USB-C is also invaluable when it comes to the latest MacBook and MacBook Pro line since that's all you have to work with when it comes to inputs/outputs. Being able to power a laptop while simultaneously working on another monitor means you never have to worry about battery drain.

LG understands the plight of the current Apple user while sharing Apple's vision for the future.

In its current iteration, LG has been around for over 20 years, and it has refined its craft and innovation over the last 10, creating display technology coveted by and even used by other display makers, like Samsung. LG provides premium quality without the platinum price tag you see in other brands. Its products are just as good, but far more affordable.

Lastly, LG understands the needs of Apple users, going so far as to work directly with Apple to create its 5K UltraFine display. The inclusion of a USB hub in the 27UD88 shows that it understands the plight of the current Apple user, while also sharing Apple's vision for the future.

Alternatives to the LG 27UD88

Of course, LG isn't the only maker of excellent USB-C monitors for your MacBook or MacBook Pro, and if your needs are a little different than what the 27UD88 offers, then one of the below options should suit you perfectly.

Runner-up Acer H277HU

Acer H277HU

An affordable option that looks as great as it performs.

The Acer H277HU may not have a 4K display, but it makes up for it with great input options and a very quick 4ms response time.

Acer's slim-bezel H277HU has a great display that looks as good as its hardware. The golden chin bezel and collar-shaped stand are gorgeous and eye-catching, though not distracting since the bezel around the rest of the screen is minimal. Like a good USB-C monitor should when it comes to the 2016 MacBook Pro and newer, the H277HU powers your MacBook Pro via USB-C, so you can work all day and night.

This monitor isn't for folks with a wonky setup who need to swivel it around to portrait mode, or anything like that since it can only tilt backward 15 degrees and forward five. Other than that, it's a great companion to your MacBook, adding a 1440x2560 display, an HDMI port, and a DisplayPort (though you cannot interface with peripherals via your MacBook and the USB-C input). Check it out for around $445.

Premium option

LG 34WK95U-W Nano-ISP UltraWide

From MacBook to iMac with LG and Thunderbolt 3.

Though LG's UltraFine 27MD5KB was designed specifically with Apple's MacBook Pro in mind, it's the 34WK95U-W that wins our hearts. This 5K monitor has a 5120 x 2160 resolution, 34-inch display, a Thunderbolt 3 port, an HDMI port, a DisplayPort port, and a couple of USB-A ports. It's more versatile than the UltraFine and that's fine with us.

You can use LG's UltraWide monitor with your MacBook or MacBook Pro and daisy chain it with a second monitor 4K monitor. The Thunderbolt 3 cable supports data transfer up to 40Gbsp and 85W charging.

Future-proof

LG 38UC99-W Curved UltraWide

Ahead of the curve.

The future is curved and LG is the pioneer of bending the display rules. This 38-inch UltraWide monitor has a 21:9 ratio with split screen support and is perfect for graphic designers and professional photo and video editors. The 4K display has a USB-C, USB 2.0 and USB 3.0 port, plus a couple of HDMI ports, and a DisplayPort port.

If you need to charge your MacBook (including the 15-inch MacBook Pro) and transfer data at the same time, you're in luck because this curvy beauty has what you want.

Budget option ASUS ZenScreen

ASUS ZenScreen

As portable as it gets.

The ZenScreen is ASUS's very portable monitor, which has its own USB-C port and offers a great-looking IPS panel. This 15.6-inch screen features ASUS' Eye Car technology to prevent eye fatigue and has flicker-free backlighting and a blue light filter to help keep you productive for longer.

It also has a great display widget that lets you play with advanced settings in order to tweak things just how you like them. The best part? It's only $240! It also weighs about two pounds, so it shouldn't add too much more heft to your laptop bag. In fact, it's so light, one Amazon reviewer did some finagling and basically mounted it atop their MacBook screen.

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