LG 27UL600-W 4K Monitor Review and Comparison with the LG 27UD88-W
I have always used a dual monitor setup as it increases your productivity significantly. It is easier to multitask with more screen real estate. As such, I finally caved and added another 27” 4K monitor to my setup. After some research, I decided to go with the LG 27UL600-W. In this post, I will review the LG 27UL600-W and also compare it with my LG 27UD88-W monitor.
Selecting the LG 27UL600-W 4K monitor
I am currently using an LG 27UD88-W which is a 27” 4K monitor. While it provides a native UHD resolution of 3840 x 2160, I use it with a 150% scale at a resolution of 2560×1440. IMHO, this is the perfect resolution to use on a 27” monitor. The text really sharp at this resolution and you have sufficient real estate space per monitor.
As such, I knew I wanted another 27” 4K monitor. The LG is also a natural choice since it would pair better aesthetically with my existing LG monitor. Here in Singapore, I have only 3 models to go with, the 27UL850-W, the 27UL600-W and the 27UL500-W.
Option 1: LG 27UL850-W
As the highest-end model, the LG 27UL850-W is the successor to the 27UD88-W. Both of these monitors are very similar in terms of their IPS panel specifications. Both have the same 350cd (typical) brightness and are factory calibrated. What is new with the 27UL850-W model is the addition of HDR10 and VESA DisplayHDR™ 400 support.
The 27UL850-W also has a speaker built-in. But I wouldn’t really factor that into consideration at all. Both of these monitors also support USB-C connectivity with a 60W power delivery on top of 1x DisplayPort and 2x HDMI inputs. It is worth noting that the newer 27UL850-W supports the newer DisplayPort 1.4 standards.
Option 2: LG 27UL600-W
The LG 27UL600-W is an interesting model. On paper, it seems to have the same IPS panel specifications as per the LG 27UL850-W. The only difference seems to be the support of USB Type-C and the built-in speaker. Every other specification seems to be similar.
One of the key difference with the 27UL600-W model is the monitor stand. The 27UL850-W stand supports vertical tilt, height and pivot rotation adjustment while the cheaper 27UL600-W only supports tilt. LG does have a 27UL650-W model that sports the more capable stand, but this model is not readily available here in Singapore.
Option 3: LG27UL500-W
Finally, the LG 27UL500-W is an entry-level model. Most of the specifications of the IPS panel looks similar with the exception of the brightness. The 27UL500-W’s display brightness is rated at 300cd (typical) / 240cd (minimum) which seems to suggest that it is not the same panel used on the 27UL600-w or the 27UL850-W model.
On the aesthetics side, the LG 27UL600-W looks a lot nicer with what LG calls a “virtually borderless design”. You can see the difference in the screenshot I took from the LG’s website.
To be frank, I think there are other monitors in the market with much thinner borders. The LG 27UL850/600-W’s border still comes to about 8mm in length. You will want to look for another brand if you want a really thin border.
Going with Option 2: LG 27UL600-W
I personally think that different needs and circumstances will dictate a different choice. Therefore, I’m not going to explain why you should choose the LG 27UL600-W. Instead, I will explain my setup and why I went with this choice. And if you happen to be in a similar set of circumstance, then perhaps you can also consider the LG 27UL600-W.
I use a dual MacBook set up at home now due to the current work-from-home situation of COVID-19. As such, one of the main considerations is that it has the necessary ports to connect both MacBooks to both monitors. For my personal MacBook, I connect it to the Razer Core X eGPU that houses an AMD RX 5700 XT GPU that can easily connect to both monitors via DisplayPort.
As for my work MacBook, I use the Baseus 9-in-1 Armor Age Type-C Bracket Multi-Functional Hub that a two USB Type-C port and an HDMI port. I can connect to two monitors using just this one side of the hub alone. The only downside is that the HDMI port of the Baseus hub only supports 4K at 30Hz. For my work, that is still tolerable.
Therefore, my selection criteria was on the following order.
- The quality of the monitor panel.
- The best match to my existing LG 27UD88-W monitor.
- Provide DisplayPort and HDMI connectivity. USB Type-C is not a must-have as its already provided on the LG 27UD88-W monitor.
- Don’t break the bank!
- The monitor stand is irrelevant as I would be using a dual-monitor arm
The LG 27UL600-W fits the criteria perfectly.
Review of the LG 27UL600-W
The most important part of the monitor is the display. TL;DR, the display panel on the LG 27UL600-W is pretty good straight out of the box. It is an IPS-based panel that has sRGB 99% (CIE1931) colour coverage. While you can go all out and get a 99% DCI-P3 coverage monitor, it would have broken my criteria number 4 of trying not to break the bank. 🙂
The LG’s website does not specifically share it, but the test at rtings.com shows that the LG 27UL600-W has close to 80% DCI-P3 colour gamut coverage. So while it kind of support HDR, it actually isn’t really a great HDR monitor. But at its price point, I did not expect anything more. As mentioned, a 27″ 4K monitor that does 99% DCI-P3 wide colour gamut will cost quite a fair bit more.
But if you do non-critical imaging work, the display on the LG 27UL600-W is pretty good out of the box. While LG claims that the monitor has been factory calibrated, I think it can be further tuned. I’ve not yet had the time to tune the picture settings of the monitor to better match with my LG 27UD88-W. But I suspect that when I do, its colour reproduction would be a lot closer to my personal preference.
I’m not sure if I’m a fan of the High Dynamic Range (HDR) mode. I took a photo with my Fuji X100T digital camera of the monitor to show you how a photo I took is displayed with and without HDR mode on. In the image comparison below, you can clearly see the difference.
However, I personally feel that the HDR mode over saturates the colour when using the monitor to display websites and regular productivity applications.
The Monitor Stand
The stand wasn’t an important feature in my selection criteria. However, I think its important to note how it attaches to the monitor and how it looks like when you use a monitor arm with the LG 27UL600-W. The photo below would explain why I am pointing this out.
The mount point for the monitor stand is permanently attached to monitor and cannot be removed. It sticks out quite ugly if you are using it with a monitor arm. Thankfully it’s hidden behind the monitor.
Here is a gallery of photos of the menu for the LG 27UL600-W.
Comparing the LG 27UL600-W with the LG 27UD88-W
Comparing the displays
The LG 27UD88-W is an excellent monitor. The colour reproduction is exceptional as it is factory calibrated. It also has more picture mode settings including one for sRGB which I really like. There really was no need for me to calibrate the LG 27UD88-W at all.
As I mentioned earlier, the LG 27UL600-W’s out of the box colour is quite good. However, when I have it side by side with the LG 27UD88-W, you can see the difference clearly. In some ways, this is expected as the picture modes between the two monitors are different. There is no sRGB mode selectable on the 27UL600-W.
The closest I could get with the minimal time spent on tuning is using the Cinema picture mode.
Comparing the build
Both of the LG 27UL600-W and 27UD88-W are well build monitors. When I used the older 27UD88-W alone, its silver-coloured frame was not noticeable at all. The 27UL600-W has a black and slightly thinner frame bordering the monitor. So now that both are side-by-side, the silver frame is visibly noticable.
In some ways, that is ok with me. As I still continue to use the LG 27UD88-W as my primary monitor where I work off, the silver border feels a little like a “selection border” surrounding the primary monitor. 😀
As with the monitor stand, I would have wished LG had designed it better on the 27UL600-W, even if they wanted to leave out the ability to adjust the height and pivot. So I highly recommend that you use a monitor arm with the LG 27UL600-W.
I would definitely recommended the LG 27UL600-W if you are shopping for an affordable 27″ 4K monitor. It has a good out-of-the-box colour display and displays text with high clarity and sharpness. Most of all, it is pretty affordable.
The only real bummer which really isn’t bothersome is the stand’s mount point that sticks out behind the monitor if you do not plan to use the monitor stand that comes with the monitor.
All in all, I would rate the LG 27UL600-W as a 4/5 star monitor. It’s not perfect but at its price point, you really can’t go wrong with it.