Best Monitors for Color Grading – Ultimate Buying Guide
Finding the best monitor for color grading may seem daunting, but we’ve made it much easier with this user friendly buying guide. Every graphic designer, photographer, videographer, and other visual artists understand the importance and impact of color. You can add or remove specific colors to create the desired effect, atmosphere, or emotion.
Advertisers and movie directors definitely comprehend it to the highest degree. So to implement the right colors, you need the right tools. Specifically, you need a monitor that is geared for color grading. With that in mind, we’ve provided more info regarding color grading and product reviews below.
- Best Monitors for Color Grading – Ultimate Buying Guide
- Best Monitor for Color Grading 2023 – Quick List
- Best Monitor for Color Grading 2023- Reviews
- 1. Philips 276E9QDSB Monitor – Best Overall
- 2. Philips 226E9QDSB Monitor – Best 22 inch
- 3. ASUS ProArt PA248QV Monitor – Best 24 inch
- 4. ViewSonic VP2768-4K Monitor – Best 27 inch
- 5. Philips 288E2E Monitor – Best 28 inch
- 6. VIOTEK GNV30CBXA Monitor – Best 30 inch
- 7. AOC CU32V3 Monitor – Best 32 inch
- 8. LG 34WN80C-B Monitor – Best 34 inch
- 9. Sceptre C355B-QUN168 Monitor – Best 35 inch
- 10. LG 49WL95C-WE Monitor – Best 49 inch
- What is Color Grading?
Best Monitor for Color Grading 2023 – Quick List
- Philips 276E9QDSB – Best Overall
- Philips 226E9QDSB – Best 22 inch
- ASUS ProArt PA248QV – Best 24 inch
- ViewSonic VP2768-4K – Best 27 inch
- Philips 288E2E – Best 28 inch
- VIOTEK GNV30CBXA – Best 30 inch
- AOC CU32V3 – Best 32 inch
- LG 34WN80C-B – Best 34 inch
- Sceptre C355B-QUN168 – Best 35 inch
- LG 49WL95C-WE – Best 49 inch
Best Monitor for Color Grading 2023- Reviews
Philips monitors are phenomenal for accurate color reproduction, while still being amazingly affordable. The Philips 276E9QDSB has an ample screen that provides 124% sRGB and 93% NTSC color gamut coverage. With those color specs, you can be extremely confident that you can adjust the color grading with high fidelity. The Philips 276E9QDSB is literally comparable to monitors costing in the thousands. Unbelievably, this is lowest priced monitor from this list.
The Philips 226E9QDSB may look the same as our Best Overall pick, but it’s actually a smaller “cousin” with a 22 inch screen, compared to 27 inches for the 276E9QDSB. The 22 inch display actually provides a higher color gamut coverage of 129% sRGB and 108% NTSC. It’s one of the best in the industry, and most affordable. If you’re looking for a compact 22 inch monitor, that is incredible for color grading, look no further.
The ASUS ProArt monitor lives up to its name by providing you everything it can to facilitate with color grading within a 24 inch “frame”. It’s Calman Verified and delivers 100% sRGB/Rec.709 ΔE < 2. Combine the color accuracy with a high resolution, highly adjustable, IPS display panel, and you will be color grading like a pro from every angle. Incredibly, you can currently get it all for around 250 dollars.
The ViewSonic VP2768-4K is for the professional that appreciates every aesthetic and technical detail. It delivers the professional standards for color grading in 4K resolution, and then some. It’s color calibrated for sRGB (100%), EBU, SMPTE-C, Rec. 709, and DICOM-SIM color spaces. The 14-bit LUT & 3D LUT (Look-Up Tables) generate an amazing amount of 4.39 trillion colors. It even features versatile color adjustability, with 6-axis color enhancement, so that you can individually adjust red, yellow, green, cyan, blue, and magenta to exactly how you want it.
The Philips 288E2E is yet another Philips that has made our list, which is a strong testament to their increased focus on color grading. It’s similar in size to our Best Overall choice, but the Philips 288E2E has an increased resolution of 3840×2160, making it a 4K monitor. Combine the UHD display that delivers 1.07 billion colors, with 120% sRGB and 107% NTSC, and you have a strong contender for one of the best color grading monitors available.
Perhaps you want a computer monitor that is great for grading, but you’re also a pretty serious gamer… we’ve got you covered. Many creative types are avid gamers, we totally get it, and the VIOTEK GNV30CBXA can give you the best of both worlds. The VIOTEK GNV30CBXA covers 112% of sRGB and 85% of NTSC to make sure all your color corrections and modifications are “spot on”. On the gaming side, there’s a 200Hz refresh rate, FreeSync & GSYNC compatibility, and a curved, ultrawide, VA panel. What more could you want?
Bigger is often better, and the AOC CU32V3 will not disappoint if you’re looking for what is considered the largest of “standard” size monitors, which is currently 32 inches. The AOC CU32V3 is definitely made for color grading in mind with: 121% of sRGB, 99% NTSC, 90% Adobe RGB, and 90% DCI-P3. The curved, 4K, VA panel is highly viewable from just about every angle. It’s perfect for color grading professionals that are looking for high value and affordability.
The LG 34WN80C-B is a color grading & productivity pro’s dream come true. It has a 99% sRGB coverage, and HDR10 compatibility which of course is great for color grading. The LG 34WN80C-B really begins to stand out, when you consider it as an essential piece of a productivity hub. There’s a plethora of connectivity ports including: 1x USB-C, 2x USB 3.0, 1x DisplayPort, 2x HDMI, and a headphone jack. Combine that with a 34 inch, curved, ultrawide, WQHD display, and you’re in business.
The Sceptre C355B-QUN168 is another fantastic combination of color grading and gaming features. There is HDR400 and 99% sRGB for color grading, and a 120Hz refresh rate and built-in speakers for gaming. There’s plenty of connectivity options too, including: 2x HDMI, 2x Displayport, and a 3.5mm headphone port. The Sceptre C355B-QUN168 is actually quite affordably priced, so you could create the ultimate battlestation/workstation with multiple monitors side by side.
If you literally want of the largest displays possible for color grading, you should take a serious look at the 49 inch LG 49WL95C-WE. It comes with HDR10 and covers 99% of the sRGB color gamut, so you’re plenty good for the color grading space. What really is amazing, is that whatever you want to work on, stream, or play, will be greatly enhanced by the 49 inch screen. Just imagine yourself using it. You don’t even need multiple monitors to multi-task because of the sheer size of the LG 49WL95C-WE.
What is Color Grading?
Color grading is the process of improving the appearance of an image for presentation in different environments on different devices. Various attributes of an image such as contrast, color, saturation, detail, black level, and white point may be enhanced whether for motion pictures, videos, or still images. Color grading and color correction are often used synonymously as terms for this process and can include the generation of artistic color effects through creative blending and compositing of different images. Color grading is generally now performed in a digital process either in a controlled environment with programs such as Adobe Photoshop, or in any location where a computer can be used in dim lighting.
Primary & Secondary Color Grading
Primary color grading affects the whole image by providing control over the color density curves of red, green, blue color channels, across the entire frame. Secondary correction can isolate a range of hue, saturation and brightness values to bring about alterations in hue, saturation and luminance only in that range, allowing the grading of secondary colors, while having a minimal or usually no effect on the remainder of the color spectrum.
Using digital grading, objects and color ranges within a scene can be isolated with precision and adjusted. Color tints can be manipulated and visual treatments pushed to extremes not physically possible with laboratory processing. With these advancements, the color correction process has become increasingly similar to well-established digital painting techniques, ushering forth a new era of digital cinematography.
Masks & Mattes
The evolution of digital color grading tools has advanced to the point where the colorist can use geometric shapes (such as mattes or masks in photo software such as Adobe Photoshop,) to isolate color adjustments to specific areas of an image. These tools can highlight a wall in the background and color only that wall, leaving the rest of the frame alone, or color everything but that wall. Subsequent color correctors (typically software-based) have the ability to use spline-based shapes for even greater control over isolating color adjustments. Color keying is also used for isolating areas to adjust.