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LG UltraWide 38WN95C review: The best monitor money can buy

Tim Danton
4 Sep 2020
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
1,329
inc VAT

Our new favourite monitor, the LG UltraWide 38WN95C has a gorgeous IPS panel backed with all the features most people need

Pros 
Astonishingly good panel
Versatile stand
Plenty of ports
Cons 
A bit of an investment
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The LG UltraWide 38WN95C is a 38in curved monitor with an impressive specs sheet and a price tag to match. On paper, this is the ultimate display: remote workers will appreciate the vast amount of screen real estate and adjustable stand, while gamers will benefit from the 144Hz refresh rate and comprehensive adaptive sync support.

Our colleagues over at PC Pro magazine put this panel through its paces as a part of an enormous 35-monitor group test. It's on sale from Thursday 11 September, but to make sure you never miss an issue, visit the PC Pro website to subscribe.

To find out what they thought of the LG UltraWide 38WN95C, read on. 

READ NEXT: The best monitors to buy

LG UltraWide 38WN95C review: What you need to know

While most curved panels use VA technology, LG opts for IPS with this 37.5in display, which means you can expect good viewing angles at the expense of curvature (more on that later). A bit of digging in diagnostic utilities reveals that this particular panel was manufactured earlier this year; as a result, it benefits from a number of upgrades.

Top of the list is a 144Hz refresh rate, which will naturally make a big difference in games – if you have a graphics card powerful enough to feed 3,840 x 1,600 pixels. Add a 1ms response time, and adaptive sync support for both AMD and Nvidia graphics cards, and you have a superb gaming display.

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LG UltraWide 38WN95C review: Performance

Our tests also show this panel can hit 543cd/m² in general use, notably above LG’s stated peak of 450cd/m², which explains why it passed VESA’s tough certification process to earn a DisplayHDR 600 rating. This is immediately noticeable if you activate the screen’s HDR Effect mode, which revealed details that are lost on other monitors.

This panel also offers a wide colour gamut, and LG makes the most of it by including both sRGB and DCI-P3 presets. Testing at 120cd/m², the sRGB mode covered 97.8% of the sRGB volume with 102.7% volume, while at peak brightness in the DCI-P3 preset it covered 94.2% of the DCI-P3 gamut with 97.9% volume. Truly excellent figures, especially when backed with an average Delta E of 0.91. Aside from the very top left, it proved to be a uniformly bright panel too.

One advantage of IPS curved panels over their VA rivals is viewing angles, with less obvious drop-off as you look across the screen. The disadvantage is the amount of curvature. While LG doesn’t state an official figure, we believe this is a 2300R panel and that means it’s a far gentler curve. As a result, you don’t get the same level of immersion; indeed, when you’re sitting in front of the LG you barely notice any curve at all.

What you do notice is the astonishing amount of desktop space available. You can easily view three windows side by side, and we recommend Microsoft Power Toys’ FancyZones to help keep them organised as LG doesn’t supply a screen-management utility. A pixel density of 111ppi ensures that text looks sharp from normal viewing distances too; there’s no grain here.

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LG UltraWide 38WN95C review: Design and features

We’re pleased to see that LG supplies a flexible, adjustable stand, and coupled with a lighter weight this is a surprisingly easy monitor to move around. It’s as compact as it can realistically be, so you can push it back quite far on your desk, and note that it offers height adjustment of 110mm along with 30° of swivel.

LG keeps things neat at the rear, with the standard two HDMI inputs, DisplayPort and a Thunderbolt USB-C port that can supply a reassuring 94W of power to your laptop. There are also two USB ports, again at the rear, but with no USB-B input you can’t use these with connections other than USB-C (and consequently you can’t share a keyboard and mouse between two systems hooked up to the screen).

LG doesn’t supply a ports cover, instead relying on its supplied white cables to blend in – which is useful if you were thinking of placing this monitor front of house. That all-white theme extends to the external power supply too.

There’s no need for separate speakers as the pair of 5W units here do an excellent job with music and films alike, but that’s it for “extras”. That’s fine by us: LG has ploughed its money into the panel and the electronics that power it – with tangible results. We’re even fans of the OSD, which is so quick and easy to understand that you’ll be navigating through its options in no time at all (once you find it, as the mini joystick control is tucked beneath the LG logo).

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LG UltraWide 38WN95C review: Verdict

While the LG UltraWide 38WN95C costs substantially more than many of its competitors, it’s worth the added investment. If you buy the LG UltraWide 38WN95C then your eyes will thank you for many years to come – and its width should bring productivity benefits too.