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Best Monitors for Photo Editing Under 300

by Ledmond Team
A TV mounted in a beautiful home

Your search for the best monitors for photo editing under 300 may be challenging but not impossible. Especially when you have us around to do the work for you. Certain specifications and features that make a monitor perfect for video and photo editing tend to be available at a higher price point. So you really do have to look through the sales, offers, and discounts and read the fine print to finally choose the best monitors for photo editing under $300.

You may be an excellent photographer or videographer, but that will not be evident if you have a poor-quality monitor. Low-quality monitors will lower the quality of your output and potentially harm your eye health. So while you may be on a fixed budget, you can still get the best monitor for photo editing if you know where to look. Check out our top picks below and see which one is a good fit.

Best Monitors for Photo Editing Under 300

1. Best Overall: HP 24MH 23.8-Inch Display

Specifications

  • Display Size: 23.8” (diagonal)
  • Display Type: IPS
  • Resolution: FHD (1920 x 1080)
  • Brightness: 250 nit
  • Color gamut: 95%-100% sRGB

With over 16,000 five-star reviews on Amazon, the HP 24MH Display is our top pick for the best monitor for photo editing under $300. Its ultra-slim micro-edge display means you have more working space on the rather small 23.8” screen. The full HD IPS screen offers 178° wide viewing angles as the high color gamut. The 1000:1 static contrast ratio gives sharp images in rich colors. 

Although it doesn’t support Adaptive-Sync, its 75Hz refresh rate and 5ms response time can help facilitate decent video editing work. For your comfort, there are pre-calibrated presets that include Low Blue Light to protect your eyes. You can also use the five hotkeys on the bottom bezel to adjust for color, brightness, sharpness, and contrast. 

Ergonomics are provided by the anti-glare monitor that is height adjustable up to 4 inches, a 360° swivel from portrait to landscape, and a 5° forward and 25° backward tilt of the monitor. Connectivity is covered with ports like the HDMI 1.4, VGA, DisplayPort 1.2, and a 3.5 audio jack.

2. Best Budget: BenQ 21.5” EyeCare Stylish Monitor

Specifications

  • Display Size: 21.5” (diagonal)
  • Display Type: IPS
  • Resolution: FHD (1920 x 1080)
  • Brightness: 250 nit
  • Color gamut: 72% NTSC

Our choice for the best budget monitor for video editing and photo editing goes to the BenQ 21.5” EyeCare Stylish Monitor. Its highlight feature is BenQ’s Eye-Care technology that includes low blue light technology that filters blue light. Fitted with flicker-free technology, there’s little to no eye fatigue when you use this monitor. It also features brightness intelligence technology that performs content optimization and adjusts for ambient light. 

All these ensure your eyes are protected as you work on the anti-glare, wide-view IPS Full HD 8-bit color display. This frameless monitor has ultrathin bezels and a hidden cable design for that modern, stylish look. You can tilt it up to 5° forward and 20° backward. It even has VESA wall mount capability which is pretty cool and essential during photo editing. 

One VGA port and two HDMI 1.4 ports allow easy switching between two media sources. The sculpted base allows for an easy, one-click setup, and all the wires are hidden inside it for a clean, cluttered-free look.

3.Best Runner Up: BenQ 24 Inch Eye-Care Stylish Monitor (GL2480)

Specifications

  • Display Size: 24” (diagonal)
  • Display Type: TN
  • Resolution: FHD (1920 x 1080)
  • Brightness: 250 nit
  • Color gamut: 72% NTSC

BenQ monitors are famous for their exclusive Eye-Care technology, and that goes for the BenQ 24 Inch Monitor as well. The monitor has brightness intelligence technology for adaptive brightness so you have clearer images. It can also filter out harmful blue light and has flicker-free technology to protect against eye strain. 

The ePaper Mode balances text and background for easier and less strenuous long reading sessions, and the Color Weakness Mode assists users who struggle with color perception and differentiation. The FHD 250 nit 72% NTSC monitor gives impressive color depth and image clarity, valuable for photo editing. 

The monitor also has a 60Hz refresh rate and a 1ms response rate that is excellent for video editing and gaming. Multimedia connectivity via HDMI, DVI, and VGA ports is also included in its sleek design. It also has invisible cable management where the wires are hidden inside the stand for an overall neat, sleek look.

4. Best Curved: Sceptre 30” Curved Gaming Monitor

Specifications

  • Display Size: 30” (diagonal)
  • Display Type: VA
  • Resolution: Wide FHD (2560 x 1080)
  • Brightness: 270 nit
  • Color gamut: 90% sRGB

Cross-functionality is advantageous in tech for many reasons. Like there are some excellent monitors for both programming and gaming, many monitors function well for gaming and photo editing. Sceptre 30” Curved Gaming Monitor is one such monitor. This 1800R curved monitor offers an immersive experience aided by the ultra-thin bezel and wide FHD resolution.

It has an ultrawide screen at 21:9 aspect ratio that offers 30% more screen space to facilitate multitasking via the Picture-by-Picture and Picture-in-Picture capabilities. This monitor has a high 200Hz refresh rate, 5ms response time, and AMD FreeSync, which is excellent for editing videos. Anti-flicker and blue light shift technology protect your eyes, and the tiltable display facilitates your comfort. One DisplayPort, one HDMI 2.0, and two HDMI 1.4 ports also guaranteed connectivity.

5. Best for “Mixed Function”: Dell 27” Monitor (SE2719H)

Specifications

  • Display Size: 27.0” (diagonal)
  • Display Type: IPS
  • Resolution: FHD (1920 x 1080)
  • Brightness: 300 nit
  • Color gamut: 72% NTSC

Unlike the Dell S2721QS, the Dell 27” Monitor (SE2719H) does not have a 4K resolution. Nevertheless, its IPS FHD screen offers consistently clear views across a wide 178° angle. This monitor was not designed with a specific function and can therefore be used for various functions, including photo and video editing. 

This is because the monitor has a 72% gamut, 300 nit brightness, and 1000:1 static contrast ratio which are great when editing photos. For ease of work, you can tilt the monitor 5° forward and 21° backward and use Dell EasyArrange to stay organized while multitasking. Your eyes are protected by the flicker-free anti-glare screen and the ComfortView feature that minimizes blue light. 

There is a VGA and HDMI port for connectivity and a built-in power supply to minimize clutter. The monitor also comes with various accessories to enhance your experience and performance.

6. Best Portable: Asus ZenScreen MB16AC

Specifications

  • Display Size: 15.6” (diagonal)
  • Display Type: IPS
  • Resolution: FHD (1920 x 1080)
  • Brightness: 220 nit
  • Contrast ratio: 800:1

Compared to PC monitors, screen size is the biggest disadvantage for even the best laptop monitor for photo editing. This is true for the portable 15.6” Asus ZenScreen MB16AC, but it makes up for it in many other ways. This super-slim monitor comes with a groundbreaking hybrid-signal solution where it only needs a single USB cable for charging and to connect to any laptop. 

That way, you can leave detailed work for later on a larger screen. PS technology gives wide viewing angles while the FHD resolution, 220 nit brightness, and 800:1 contrast ratio give crisp, clear images. Blue light filters on the flicker-free screen protect your eyes. 

Its smart cover and pen hole provide autorotation between portrait and landscape orientations. The foldable smart case works as protection from scratches and as a stand for easy portability and easy remote working.

7. Best Alternative Curved Monitor: Samsung 24” CF396 Curved LED Monitor

Specifications

  • Display Size: 23.5” (diagonal)
  • Display Type: VA
  • Resolution: FHD (1920 x 1080)
  • Brightness: 250 nit
  • Contrast ratio: 3000:1

The Samsung 24” CF396 Curved Monitor offers the immersive experience that only curved monitors can provide. Its 1800R curvature gives panoramic views that are good for your eyes and even better for your output. The VA panel gives deep blacks by minimizing light leakage. That, coupled with the 3000:1 contrast ratio and FHD resolution, gives sharp, clear images necessary for excellent photo editing.

The Samsung monitor widescreen provides more workspace for multitasking, and its AMD FreeSync technology and 4ms response rate allow for efficient video editing. It has a custom Eye Saver Mode that reduces blue light and flickers across the screen. 

The screen also adjusts automatically in response to ambient light, which is great for your eyes and saves energy. This ultraslim monitor can be tilted 2° forward and 20° backward.

What to Check While Buying the Best Monitors for Photo Editing Under 300

Getting the best budget monitor for video editing and photo editing does not mean you must overlook important specifications. As shown above, you have plenty of great quality monitors to choose from that are under $300. Remember, your choice will affect not only the quality of your work but also your quality of life, particularly your eye health. So as you look through your options, be sure to check on these important features:

1. Contrast Ratio

The contrast ratio is a measure of the difference between the luminance of the brightest white and the darkest black visible on a monitor. For instance, let’s take a 1000:1 contrast ratio shows that the darkest black is 1 but the brightest white is 1000 times brighter than this black. Often the higher the ratio, the darker the blacks, and the better the quality of the image. However, a more accurate assessment of contrast should consider the stops of light in the images or video.

2. Screen Brightness

Screen brightness, like contrast ratio, directly impacts the health of your eyes. Screens that are too bright or too dim will cause a negative impact on your eyes. The optimal brightness level is subjective, depending on the ambient light and the monitor brand. To protect your eyes, look for monitors with blue light filters and auto-brightness functions or install an adaptive brightness application. 

Best Monitors for Photo Editing Under 300 FAQ

1. Which is better for video editing: PC or Laptop?

This is another question that is subjective to your budget and circumstances. If you are working on the go, you should get the best laptop monitor for photo editing. However, most video editors prefer PC monitors for large editing jobs, especially due to screen size. PC monitors can be as large as you need, and you can even set up several monitors to increase the workspace. This makes for better clarity and easier multitasking which are essential to video editing.

2. Do I need a 4K monitor for photo editing?

Do you need it? No. Should you get it? Yes. The thing about resolution is that it serves you best when matched with the right screen size. So you could get a 4K resolution but not have the right monitor size and so miss out on the benefits. 4K monitors offer sharper images and richer colors, making your output better. So if you can get it, go ahead. Otherwise, you can make do with full HD monitors that will still give you great performance.

3. Should I choose a standard color gamut monitor or wide gamut monitor?

This will ultimately depend on just how much color you need and how much you are willing to spend to get it. While standard gamuts may not offer rich cyans and greens, they are more affordable and less prone to banding and displaying garish colors. On the other hand, wide color gamuts offer an excellent print preview and look better overall, although they are prone to banding and cost more. The choice is yours on this one.

4. AdobeRGB or DCI-P3?

Both AdobeRGB and DCI-P3 are wide color gamuts that are about 25% larger than sRGB. They have many colors in common, although AdobeRGB favors cool colors while DCI-P3 tends towards warm colors. Both gamuts are great for photo editing as they produce colors on the screen that is closer to the final print than with sRGB. DCI-P3 is becoming increasingly popular and ubiquitous, even in smartphones, but that is not to say that AdobeRGB isn’t just as good.

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