Top monitor values under $500

CNET rounds up the best monitor values available for less than $500.

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Cheap monitors are easy to find. Go to most computer hardware outlets and you'll see plenty of off-brand, "get the job done" monitors (and by "job" I mean delivering images to your optics) awaiting your dollar.

However, just because you're paying $150 or less for a monitor doesn't mean you're necessarily getting a great deal. Paying $150 for a monitor with a paltry feature set, thoughtless design, or lackluster performance could induce an annoying and probably unexpected sense of buyer's remorse. Despite how little you paid.

Luckily, there are plenty of monitors that pay off with excellent performance, practical design, and plentiful features. You'll have to pay more for them, but in the long term you're getting more for your money.

Now, if you simply want a device that translates ones and zeros into images your eyes can decipher, then stick with the cheap monitors; however, if you're looking for an actual monitor deal, keep reading.

Monitors in the list below top out at $500 in price. The reason being that most consumers have a difficult time paying more than $500 for a monitor while still considering it a "value."



This low-priced IPS monitor won't blow your mind or all of your money. Josh Miller

LG IPS235V
The LG IPS235V IPS monitor is one of the least expensive monitors on this list yet it achieves impressive performance in games, movies, and photos. Despite this, it's also one of the most basic monitors on the list. It's a good deal for the price due to its accurate color and wide viewing angles but it lacks build quality plus the connections and OSD aren't the easiest to deal with. Read the full review of the LG IPS235V.


The HP x2301 is completely working that neon turquoise, trimming. Isn't it? Josh Miller/CNET

HP x2301
It's not just the fact that the HP x2301 is available for less than $250. There are plenty of monitors available at that price. But, from build-quality to performance to connection options (HDMI, DVI, and VGA), the monitor gives much more than what $200 usually buys. If you're going low price, go here. Read the full review of the HP x2301.


You can't see it in a static image, but the W2363D-PF features a "Knight Rider"/Cylon-like light that sequences and pulsates. Josh Miller/CNET

LG W2363D-PF
For as low as $300, the LG W2363D drops in two HDMI ports, Nvidia 3D Vision support, a headphone jack, and good overall performance. It's still one of the best 3D monitors (if not the best) I've ever reviewed. Read the full review of the LG W2363D.


The PA248Q has a good balance between performance and price. Josh Miller/CNET

Asus PA248Q
The Asus PA248Q monitor matches its good performance and features with a good price. At $330 it is less expensive than its predecessor, the PA246Q (Spoiler alert: it's the monitor featured below this one), but it can't compare to the PA246Q's high color performance. The PA248Q is a less expensive but still impressive IPS monitor that has a variety of ergonomic options, connections, and useful OSD features. Read the full review of the Asus PA248Q.


Grid overlays?! Do go on. Josh Miller/CNET

Asus PA246Q
The PA246Q barely squeaks in under the price criteria, but thanks to excellent performance, great ergo support, and a unique and plentiful OSD, the monitor is well worth its asking price. Features like the grid overlay and photo alignment tool are unique and, even more importantly, useful. Read the full review of the Asus PA246Q.


This pic seems a bit different from the others. Can't really put my finger on it, though... Josh Miller/CNET

Dell UltraSharp U2412
Backed by the fantastic four of ergo options, the U2412 also has the performance, design sense, and price to be the most compelling values here. If you can look past the lack of HDMI, it's clear that the U2412 combines features and affordability like no other. Read the full review of the Dell UltraSharp U2412.


Looking for specs and pricing? Compare these monitors head-to-head.

 

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