It’s been a long time coming, but we’re finally starting to see HDMI 2.1 monitors hit shelves – or will do in the coming months. The new monitors are a breath of fresh air for both console and PC gamers, allowing both to reap the rewards of 8K @ 60FPS or 4K @ 120FPS gameplay.
Despite only a hand full of these monitors arriving in 2021, we’re still here to give you the breakdown of the best HDMI 2.1 monitors the market has to offer.
We’ll be taking a closer look at all the major players, comparing price, performance, specs, and overall value for money.
So, with plenty to get through, let’s dive into the best HDMI 2.1 monitors in 2021.
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Best HDMI 2.1 Monitor: First Look
Acer are no strangers when it comes to high-end gaming hardware, offering up some of the best gaming monitors the market has to offer.
This, their XV282K is one of their first HDMI 2.1 monitors to hit shelves, and it does so in style.
The 28″ monitor showcases all the values you’d expect from a top-end monitor, including quick response times, high refresh rates, and a tonne of additional features all tailored towards gamers.
See the complete Acer Nitro XV282K review here.
Gigabyte was quick out the blocks to announce their HDMI 2.1 monitor range, however, they haven’t been available until recently.
The new FV43U offers up a large-screen gaming experience that really does tick all the right boxes.
Whether you’re into PC gaming, console gaming, or just general content consumption, the FV43U should offer you a fantastic experience regardless.
It comes equipped with a 4K screen resolution that makes use of the latest Quantum Dot technology. Furthermore, with a rapid 144Hz refresh rate and low 1ms MPRT, gaming feels incredibly fluid and immersive.
This is the latest arrival from the LG camp, sporting all the high-end gaming features you could want. Alongside a stunning design and excellent versatility, the UltraGear 27GP950 also comes with a tonne of options for both console and PC gamers
The UltraGear 27GP950 is one of the standout gaming monitors of 2021. It comes with a 4K resolution alongside a 144Hz refresh rate that can be overclocked to 160Hz.
With HDR600, good peak brightness, and a wide color gamut that captures 98% of the DCI-P3 spectrum, there’s not much this monitor can’t do.
For those looking for a big-screen experience, there’s really no better choice than the LG 48″ CXPUB OLED. Whilst it might not be the absolute best for PC gaming, it excels in console gaming environments and general entertainment purposes.
Despite this being an entry-level TV from LG, it still performs to an incredibly high standard when it comes to console gaming. Equipped with HDMI 2.1, VRR for both FreeSync and G-sync, an almost instantaneous response time, and OLED technology, this TV could be exactly what you’re looking for.
A monitor best-of guide wouldn’t be complete without something from the team at ASUS. Well, that isn’t strictly true – but here we are with the ASUS XG43UQ, their large 43″ HDMI 2.1 gaming monitor.
The new HDMI 2.1 monitor from ASUS ticks all the right boxes from a performance standpoint. Equipped with dual HDMI 2.1 ports, VRR support, ELMB, and HDR1000, 144Hz refresh rate, and 1ms MPRT, gaming never looked better.
Physically testing the products we recommend here at WePC is one of the fundamental factors that has helped us secure your trust in recent years.
For the best HDMI 2.1 monitors post, we haven’t quite managed to test all the monitors we’ve recommended – my bad. That being said, the ones we haven’t tested have been selected from previous experience, specifications, and the overall reputation of the brand.
Like all our best-of guides, we will be performing thorough tests of all the monitors we recommend – as and when we can.
What Is HDMI 2.1?
Maybe a silly question, but for some individuals – especially the ones new to PC/console gaming – the features and benefits of the new video/audio transfer standard are a little foreign. HDMI 2.1 is the latest standard of HDMI specification – the world’s most popular video/audio interface. The latest standard of HDMI offers a whole host of exciting features and benefits that will improve gaming, exponentially.
The new HDMI specifications support a range of higher video resolution and refresh rates, including; [email protected] and [email protected] – not to mention 10K resolution too. Furthermore, dynamic HDR formats are also supported alongside bandwidth capabilities that reach 48Gbps.
Whilst most of the HDMI 2.1 excitement surrounds higher resolution support, that isn’t the only benefit. Gamers will also be able to enjoy eARC simplified connectivity – providing greater ease of use and supporting the most advanced audio formats (higher quality audio experience).
Gamers can also look forward to enhanced gaming features too, including a more efficient VRR experience, Auto Low Latency Mode, and Quick Frame Transport (QFT) too – for reduced latency.
When Are HDMI 2.1 Monitors Available?
There’s a lot of speculation surrounding the release of HDMI 2.1 monitors. However, best estimates say that most will be released within the coming months – with some almost ready to hit shelves now. Having said that, due to the shortage in, well, everything tech-related, we can almost certainly expect some delays to occur on these particular products.
Fortunately, delays won’t last forever, and it’s only a matter of time before stock becomes available.
Things To Consider When Purchasing A HDMI 2.1 Monitor
With any new hardware technology, understand the main things to consider is incredibly important.
For an HDMI 2.1 monitor, there are plenty of factors to consider before jumping in actually making a purchase.
Below, we have listed the most important factors and some expectations that come with an HDMI 2.1 monitor:
Like many new technologies, HDMI 2.1 monitors are coming with fairly hefty price tags – as you’d imagine. Thanks to the specifications these monitors come equipped with (4K @ 144Hz in most cases), they aren’t exactly the cheapest options around there.
That’s the point though, as a gamer – especially a console gamer – the point of HDMI 2.1 is high resolutions at over 60FPS (in this case, 120hz).
So, if you are in the market for a new HDMI 2.1 monitor, remember, you’re likely going to have to spend a good amount of cash to reap the rewards.
As most HDMI 2.1 monitors come with high resolutions, PC gamers will have to factor in the strength of their PC components.
As we say on our 4K gaming monitor page, moving from a 1080 or 1440p panel up to a UHD 4K one comes with huge knock-on effects to your gaming experience.
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This is particularly important for individuals that want to hook their monitor up to a PC and a next-gen console.
HDMI 2.1 Vs DisplayPort 1.4
There aren’t really that many huge differences between HDMI 2.1 and DisplayPort 1.4 – once you forget about the actual connector shape.
That said, there are some subtle differences to be found when taking a closer look at the technical specifications of both.
For all intents and purposes, HDMI 2.1 is the better of the two. It has a higher ‘Max Transmission Rate’ and ‘Max Data Rate’.
The biggest difference of all, however, is the convenience of HDMI. It is used in almost every consumer essential, outweighing the DisplayPort by some distance. Furthermore, next-gen consoles do not offer a DisplayPort connection – meaning if you want to relish 4K @ 120Hz, you will need to use an HDMI 2.1 monitor.
HDMI 2.1 Latest News
Best HDMI 2.1 monitor
Immersive 4K 144Hz visual experience
Agile-splendor IPS panel
Fully versatile stand
HDR content is poor
Bottom bezel feels flimsy
Acer were one of the first manufacturers to release details on their upcoming HDMI 2.1 monitor – and we were lucky enough to get our hands on one for testing. We’ve given the hugely impressive XV282K our top spot and for good reason. Not only does this monitor excel in console gaming, but it also performs extremely well in PC gaming too.
The XV282K comes with a fairly subtle design that is neither gamey nor boring. It comes with the latest XV series design signature, boasting a stylish panel, circular base, and cylindrical stand. Like other IPS panels in this guide, the XV282K comes with excellent viewing angles and an anti-glare coating that is great for daytime gaming.
From a specs standpoint, the XV282K comes with UHD 4K screen resolution, 144Hz refresh rate, and 1ms GTG response time. It also offers an extremely wide color gamut, HDR400 certification, and dual HDMI 2.1 ports. The OSD is extremely versatile, bringing a whole host of cool game-tailored features to the table.
There’s really not much to complain about with this monitor, it really does tick most boxes when it comes to PC and console gaming. That being said, it does retail for around $900, making it a pretty expensive prospect for any HDMI 2.1 monitor seeker.
Large43-inch screen size
Quick 1ms MPRT
Fast 144Hz refresh rate
Crystal clear screen clarity
Relatively high price point
The FV43U is a brand new gaming monitor that has just become available – offering up an excellent balance of immersion and performance. The FV43U is a 43-inch gaming monitor that falls with Gigabyte’s AORUS lineup of monitors – suggesting it offers only the best performance and build quality.
By design, the FV43U looks more like a TV than a gaming monitor – however, don’t let that fool you. This is very much a high-performance gaming monitor, equipped with a 144Hz refresh rate and low 1ms MPRT – making almost any gaming scenario look fluid and immersive.
Of course, the FV43U is perfect for next-gen console gamers thanks to its HDMI 2.1 support. However, more than that, this is great for general content consumption too. The VA panel inside this monitor offers a decent 4000:1 contrast ratio with inky blacks and bright whites, further accentuated when utilized with HDR content. The FV43U offers an extremely wide color gamut that covers 99% of the Adobe RGB spectrum. With VESA DisplayHDR1000 certification, users can also expect a stunning HDR experience too – great for any console or PC games that utilize the technology.
Inputs include 2 x USB 3.0, 1 x USB Type-C, 2 x HDMI 2.1, 1 x DisplayPort 1.4 (DSC), and 1 x 3.5mm audio out. Unfortunately, the stand doesn’t really offer any functionality – but that’s to be expected from a monitor of this caliber.
Excellent Color Accuracy
Good Peak Brightness
Wide Color Gamut
160Hz Refresh Rate
1ms Response Time
HDR is a little lacking
The new LG 27GP950 is the successor to the hugely popular 27GN950. It comes to the table boasting all the fan-favourite traits that the predecessor did, only with HDMI 2.1 and a few other cool additions too.
LG are one of the biggest names in the game when it comes to monitor tech, so it’s no surprise to see one of their latest panels score highly in another best-of guide. The LG 27GP950 is one of the latest monitors to be released by the South Korean manufacturer, providing all the top-line specs you could want for a stunning visual experience.
As far as design goes, the 27GP950 doesn’t offer that many changes when compared to the GN addition. With sharp edges, a sleek screen, and subtle design traits, this monitor really does offer the best of both worlds. Design aside, however, performance is where this monitor really comes into its own.
The LG offers up a UHD 4K resolution, 160Hz refresh rate (via simple OC), 1ms response time GTG(with Over Drive), and VESA DisplayHDR600 certification – all wrapped up in a new Nano IPS panel that offers a wide color gamut and a decent peak brightness. You’ll be able to relish smooth visuals with adaptive sync support in the shape of both FreeSync (Premium) and G-Sync (compatible). Features also include a versatile stand, RGB lighting, and a user-friendly OSD too.
Whilst there isn’t an official price tag for this panel, we expect the price to be somewhere in the region of $750 – respectable value when you consider the specifications.
Instantaneous Response Time
Peak Brightness Lacking
The LG 48CXPUB OLED may not be a monitor, but it does offer a superb gaming experience for console players – and can actually be used for a big-screen monitor if you require it.
Unlike any other monitor in this guide, the 48″ LG offers up OLED technology. Whilst this will drive the price of the TV up, it more than makes up for it in picture quality, response time, and HDR content. OLED technology allows the LG to turn off pixels individually, helping create perfect blacks and an extremely wide contrast ratio. This is not only ideal for general content consumption (movies or TV shows) it also helps create better immersion when playing AAA Games.
Speaking of games, the LG offers up great gaming performance to console gamers thanks to HDMI 2.1 support and a slew of additional features. The TV provides VRR for both FreeSync and G-Sync systems for a tear-free gaming experience. The near-instantaneous response time will also reduce smearing and ghosting exponentially, offering up more clarity in fast-moving images when paired alongside a quick 120Hz refresh rate. The 48″ screen size is great for general use and gaming, but not ideal for competitive games like CS:GO or COD. Furthermore, as it has an OLED panel, this TV will always be at risk of permanent burn-in. If you’re careful, however, this should not be a problem.
You get all this for a fairly respectable price point – even if it is the most expensive so far. When you compare the pros and cons, it’s easy to see why many console gamers are opting for this over a monitor.
Quick Refresh Rate
UHD Screen Resolution
Decent Peak Brightness
Last, but not least, is the ASUS ROG STRIX XG43UQ – a large screen gaming monitor that plans to bridge the gap between TV and monitor. Despite its large size, the ROG STRIX XG43UQ actually makes an incredibly efficient gaming monitor.
Aesthetically, the ROG STRIX XG43UQ looks superb. Like other ROG STRIX monitors, the XG43UQ comes equipped with an extremely ‘gamey’ feel that is characterized by ASUS branding and ROG traits.
Looks aside, this monitor really does perform to the highest standards. At the heart of this monitor lies a very capable VA panel, equipped with a wide color gamut (90% DCI-P3), 4000:1 contrast ratio, and VESA DisplayHDR1000 Certification. It also supports a 144Hz refresh rate, UHD screen resolution, and 1ms (MPRT) response time.
Furthermore, the XG43UQ also comes with a whole host of cool features that include ELMB sync, 10-watt stereo speakers, and VRR support for a tear-free experience. The only real downside to this monitor has to be the price tag. At time of writing this, the suspected price will be somewhere north of $1200, making it the most expensive in this guide.
Is HDMI 2.1 Available?
The answer’s simple, yes, yes it is! HDMI 2.1 has been available in few TVs since the back end of 2020. However, it is only just becoming available in PC hardware. Monitors are now coming to shelves offering HDMI 2.1 support, allowing next-gen console gamers to reap the rewards of an increased max transmission rate.
What Is An HDMI 2.1 Port?
HDMI 2.1 is the latest standard of the HDMI specification. Alongside a better max transmission rate, the new standard also offers a greater Max Data Rate and higher resolution/refresh rate support – enabling [email protected] gameplay.
Do You Need HDMI 2.1 For 4K?
Whilst you do get a better gaming experience for HDMI 2.1, it isn’t essential for 4K resolutions. Both HDMI 1.4 and HDMI 2.0 have the capacity to run 4K resolutions – both at 60Hz as well.
Do You Need HDMI 2.1 For 120Hz?
For PC gamers, getting a 120Hz output is fairly light work – covered nicely by the DisplayPort standard. The same can actually be said for console players too – as HDMI 2.0 can effectively reach 1080p @ 240Hz.
That being said, HDMI 2.0 does limit your refresh rate when you plan to game at 4K resolutions. To achieve 120Hz gameplay through a next-gen console, you will indeed need an HDMI 2.1 TV or monitor.
Is HDMI 2.1 A Firmware Update?
No, HDMI 2.1 is not a firmware update. Unfortunately, there is no way to update your old monitor or HDMI cable to 2.1 standard. It is a physical change that has allowed the increased bandwidth of video/audio – meaning a new cable, monitor, and sometimes GPU are required.
So, there you have it, our comprehensive breakdown of the best HDMI 2.1 monitors in 2021. The benefits of HDMI 2.1 are clear to see – however, when broken down, the majority of the benefits fall in the favour of next-gen console gamers. For many PC users, 144Hz at 4K has been a possibility for some time now – via the DisplayPort 1.4 interface. That said, all the monitors we’ve recommended would be great choices for both PC and console users.
If you have any questions regarding the above recommendations, feel free to ask below.