Fit your Mac mini with one of the best monitors around

If you’re looking for the best monitor to go with your shiny new Mac mini (2020) with the incredible M1 chip or an older Intel Mac mini, you’ve come to the right place. Your best bet is the LG Ultrafine 24MD4KL-B 4K Display Monitor, thanks to ultra-high-definition imagery, MacBook charging capabilities, and affordable price. LG’s monitor is perfect for most people and is though there are other monitors you can also consider, depending on your situation or budget. Here is our guide to the best monitors for Mac mini.

Best Overall: LG Ultrafine 24MD4KL-B 4K Display Monitor

Here’s a workhorse 4K monitor that works perfectly with the Mac mini. Though it doesn’t have the Apple design aesthetic, the good stuff is all on the inside. Just like an Apple brand monitor, all of the monitor’s controls are available in the settings section of your Mac.

This 24-inch display fits right into the pocket of reasonably priced and excellent quality if you don’t mind the boxy black look. As for the price, you can get two of them for almost the price of one LG UltraFine 5K Display. Plus, the UltraFine 4K is also great for MacBooks with its USB-C charging capabilities, making it one of our picks for best USB-C Monitors for Mac.

Pros:

  • Two Thunderbolt 3 ports
  • Dual-screen full 4K display support
  • Supports 85W charging for laptops
  • Easy to set up

Cons:

  • No camera or mic
  • No legacy ports

Best Overall

LG Ultrafine 24MD4KL-B 4K Display Monitor

4K and versatility

LG’s 24-inch UltraFine monitor offers crisp 4K resolution and convenient MacBook charging capabilities at an affordable price. Hook up two for a beautiful, bright, and convenient workflow for your Mac.

Best Image Quality: Apple Pro Display XDR

Apple’s Pro Display XDR is the ultimate monitor for the latest M1 Apple Silicon Mac mini (2020) with ultra-high-definition 6K resolution. This massive 32-inch monitor has it all: P3 color, HDR, a contrast ratio of 1,000,000:1, True Tone, Night Shift support, and it can reach up to a whopping 1,600 nits of peak brightness.

The Pro Display XDR has a single Thunderbolt 3 port that offers the best image possible with the Mac mini, as well as three USB-C ports that add additional flexibility to your desktop. The unique articulating stand (sold separately) makes adjustments a breeze, and a Nano-texture glass option reduces glare down to a minimum.

Pros:

  • Up to 6K resolution
  • 32-inch display
  • Nano-texture option
  • Thunderbolt 3 and 3 USB-C ports

Cons:

  • Expensive
  • No legacy ports
  • Doesn’t include a stand or mount

Best Image Quality

Apple Pro Display XDR

The absolute best image quality

Apple’s PRO Display XDR offers pristine image quality at 6K with a peak brightness of 1,600 nits. If you need the absolute best, then the Pro Display XDR is the one for you.

Best 5K: LG 27MD5KL-B 27 Inch UltraFine 5K

This LG monitor supports USB-C and Thunderbolt. The Thunderbolt 3 gives the Mac mini the best image quality possible, and the three USB-C ports offer 5Gbps downstream. It’s 27 inches big, which is about the size of Apple’s larger iMac, and has a similar P3 wide color gamut with 500 nits brightness. For full 5K resolution on a larger display, the UltraFine 5K is your perfect choice.

Its biggest downfall is that it doesn’t quite have that Apple aesthetic. LG has designed an attractive Edge-Arcline base for some of its monitors, which looks better with Apple products. The UltraFine 5K, unfortunately, still has that dated, boxy black base and thick bezels.

Pros:

  • Up to 5K resolution
  • Designed for Apple
  • Thunderbolt 3 and USB-C
  • Built-in speakers, camera, and mic

Cons:

  • No Apple aesthetic
  • No legacy ports

Best 5K

LG 27MD5KL-B 27 Inch UltraFine 5K

Full 5K display plus support for USB-C

If your workflow includes both a Mac mini and an iPad Pro or Macbook, this is the monitor you want.

Best for Widescreen: LG 34BK95U-W UltraFine 34-inch

Though we continued to be impressed with LG’s UltraFine 5K, it’s the 34WK95U-W that wons our hearts in our review. This 34-inch 5K HDR monitor has a resolution of 5120×2160 and sports a Thunderbolt 3 port, an HDMI port, a DisplayPort port, and a couple of USB-A ports.

The ultra-wide screen aspect ratio is excellent for multi-taskers and content creators, with ample room for plenty of windows and lengthy timelines. The extra real estate makes it more versatile than LG’s UltraFine 4K and 5K models, and the thinner bezels give it a modern look that matches the Mac mini perfectly.

Pros:

  • Pro-quality technology
  • Nano ISP color 5K display
  • USB hub
  • Versatile input options

Cons:

  • No built-in camera or microphone
  • Poor built-in speaker quality

Best for Widescreen

LG 34BK95U-W UltraFine 34-inch

Another beautiful choice

Use LG’s UltraWide monitor with your Mac, and daisy chain it with a second 4K monitor.

Best Curved: LG 38WN75C-B 38-Inch Class 21:9 Curved UltraWide

The future is curved, and LG is the pioneer of bending the display rules. This 38-inch WQHD UltraWide monitor has a 21:9 aspect ratio with sRGB 99% Color Gamut and HDR 10, perfect for graphic designers and professional photo and video editors.

Although it lacks a built-in speaker, the display has two USB-A ports, a couple of HDMI ports, headphone out, and a DisplayPort port, allowing for plenty of accessory options. Other highlights include a slick split-screen mode, 75-hertz refresh rate, 300 nits of brightness, and a sleek, virtually borderless design.

Pros:

  • Clean design
  • Split-screen option
  • HDR10 support

Cons:

  • Not 4K
  • No USB-C port
  • Plastic backside

Best Curved

LG 38WN75C-B 38-Inch Class 21:9 Curved UltraWide

Ahead of the curve

If you want a more immersive gaming experience or a broad canvas for photo editing with your Mac mini, the massive 38-inch LG 38WN75C-B with HDR 10 and sRGB Color Gamut is the one for you.

Best on a budget: ASUS ZenScreen 15.6-inch 1080P Portable Monitor (MB16AC)

The ZenScreen is a favorite for its incredible versatility and low price. It’s a 15.6-inch screen with a USB-C connector. You can rotate between landscape and portrait mode, and it’s compatible with Thunderbolt 3. If you need a second screen, this takes up just the right amount of space without being a burden on your desk.

Despite the petite size, this portable monitor is still plenty capable with 1080p full high definition resolution. This monitor even comes with the ZenScreen pen, a handy stylus option, and a folding smart cover that protects the screen when not in use, similar to Apple’s Smart Cover for iPads.

Pros:

  • Weighs less than 2 pounds
  • Ultra-slim at only 8mm thick
  • Comes with a cover and stylus
  • 60Hz refresh rate

Cons:

  • Smaller, 15-inch display
  • No HDMI support

Best on a budget

ASUS ZenScreen 15.6-inch 1080P Portable Monitor (MB16AC)

As portable as it gets

The ZenScreen is ASUS’s space-friendly monitor with a USB-C port, a great-looking IPS panel, and more.

Bottom line

Picking the right second screen for your Mac mini is a difficult one. It’s important to consider how much room you have on your desk, what you plan to use your Mac mini for, and how much you can afford. That’s why the LG Ultrafine 24MD4KL-B 4K Display Monitor is our pick for the best monitor for Mac mini since it’s the perfect fit for most people. At 24-inches, it’s big, but not too big. It’s got an incredible 4K screen, charges your MacBook, and has various ports for connecting all manner of peripherals.

If the LG is just a bit out of your range, the ASUS ZenScreen 15.6″ 1080P Portable Monitor (MB16AC) truly is the next best thing, and it’s portable! On the other end, if you need the absolute best image quality possible, then consider Apple’s impressive Pro Display XDR. The monitor is powerful, bright, and of course, beautiful too!

Credits — The team that worked on this guide

Bryan M. Wolfe is a dad who loves technology, especially anything new from Apple. Penn State (go Nittany Lions) graduate here, also a huge fan of the New England Patriots. Thanks for reading. @bryanmwolfe

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