HP E45c G5: a huge, immersive monitor, but it comes at a price

This is a gargantuan and immersive monitor, perfect for streamlining workflows

HP E45c G5
(Image: © Future / James Holland)

TechRadar Verdict

Though the price is high and the ergonomics are limited, using the HP E45c G5 is an experience that’s much more immersive than the typical monitor thanks to its wrap-around ultrawide curved screen. It’s also amazing for multi-tasking whether you’re using two sources, or just want to spread out across several windows for a more streamlined workflow.

Pros

  • +

    Immersive viewing experience

  • +

    Easier to assemble than expected

  • +

    Decent port selection

  • +

    Fast refresh rate

Cons

  • -

    Expensive

  • -

    Ergonomics are just okay

  • -

    OSD menu button a little out of reach

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HP E45C G5: One-minute review

Using the HP E45c G5, a 44.5-inch ultrawide monitor, is an experience. It’s not for everyone as the price tag is high, and it takes up a lot of space (as any 40-inch+ monitor would, of course). However, it’s engagingly immersive for media and, more importantly, allows for the ability to streamline a workflow where you need to look at multiple tabs or windows without having to switch between them.

If you’re looking for 4K resolution or need impeccable color accuracy and coverage for editing, your money may be better spent elsewhere. That’s not to say this screen isn’t great, or falls down badly in those respects, but the HP E45c G5 is among the best monitors for those looking for that immersive experience or ability to spread out a workflow, and not so much for other considerations.

Of course, if you’re reading this review, you’re probably looking for one of the best ultrawide monitors for your needs, anyway. In that regard, I think it’s up there.

HP E45C G5: Price and availability

HP E45c G5 running Sable

(Image credit: Future / James Holland)
  • How much does it cost? $1,099 / £959.99 / AU$2,045
  • When is it available? It’s out now
  • Where can you get it? Available in the US, UK and Australia

While the HP E45c G5’s price tag is certainly justifiable, $1,099 / £959.99 / AU$2,045 is not a small chunk of change to pay for a monitor. However, it fills a very specific niche as it’s for those who like to have the screen real-estate of two monitors, but in a somewhat more streamlined setup.

Looking at it from that perspective, the price tag isn’t so bad. Most decent monitors are going to set you back about $400 to $500 anyway, so getting two of them will be the same price as the HP E45c G5, while requiring two spots on an outlet or power strip for power, not to mention you won’t have a single ultrawide screen if you want to use it this way.

As for the similarly-sized competition, you’re looking at the same kind of asking price or more. For instance, the Corsair Xeneon Flex 45WQHD240 OLED is just as big and has a nicer OLED display with a faster 240Hz refresh rate, but costs $1,999.99 / £2,099.99 / AU$3,299.99.

Or, consider the Samsung Odyssey OLED G9 with its similar aspect ratio and resolution. Of course, it does have an OLED display as well, so it’s going to cost much more at $2,199.99 / £1,599 / AU$3,399. Really, the only way you’ll pay the same $1,000-ish price tag as this HP display is to find the older non-OLED version of this monitor or go smaller.

Value: 4 / 5

HP E45C G5: Design and features

When discussing the design of this HP monitor, we have to go into detail about the obvious fact that this thing is big. With a 44.5-inch VA panel, it’s made to replace the need for two monitors. In fact, I would say it’s mostly better than using two monitors as the 1500R curvature allows for a more natural way to take in the whole panel. Plus, you can either split the screen between two sources, or expand the screen real-estate of one source in a way that isn’t separated by the blemish of an inconvenient bezel (well, two bezels).

HP E45c G5 Specs

Screen size: 44.5-inches
Aspect ratio: 32:9
Resolution: 5,120 x 1,440
Brightness: 400 nits
Refresh rate: 165Hz
Response time: 3ms gtg (overdrive)
Viewing angle: 178/178
Contrast ratio: 3,000:1
Color coverage: 99% sRGB
Inputs: 1x DP 1.4, 1x HDMI 2.1, 2x USB-C, 4x USB-A, 1x RJ-45
Weight: 32.18lbs (14.6kg)

Of course, the downside with this one-panel solution is that you don’t have the same level of ergonomic control as with two separate monitors, so for example, some people like to use the second monitor in portrait mode, and obviously that’s not possible with the HP E45c. Aside from that, the HP monitor’s overall ergonomics are somewhat limited, offering a 10-degree swivel in either direction, along with a 5-degree downward tilt and 20-degree upward tilt. On a more positive note, at least its height adjustment is substantial at around 8-inches.

Another point in HP’s favor compared to using two monitors is that the HP E45c’s base, while substantial, takes up less space than you would need for two monitors. Additionally, its stand comes with some basic cable management to keep the desk looking tidy. On a side note, assembling the whole thing is much easier than I thought it would be – just attach the stand to the back of the monitor while in the box, attach the base, and just pick it up from behind.

There are plenty of ports available as well, including three video-capable inputs: HDMI, DisplayPort, and USB-C. While there are no duplicates, so you won’t be able to plug in two laptops that only have HDMI, that’s still enough to take advantage of its ability to split the screen between two sources. Also, that USB-C port can deliver up to 100W of power to one PC, or 65W to two computers.

There’s also an additional USB-C port and a couple of USB-As on hand for peripherals. Since this monitor is a multi-tasker’s dream, KVM is incorporated too. You can even plug in an Ethernet cable with the HP E45c G5.

The last design-related aspect I want to mention is the OSD menu button on the back. It’s situated all the way over on the right side behind the panel, requiring a bit of a stretch whenever you want to change a setting.

Design: 4.5 / 5

HP E45C G5: Performance

Using the HP E45c as a productivity monitor

(Image credit: Future / James Holland)

When it comes to performance, most of the negatives go right out of the window. Though this large display is limited to a (still great) 99% sRGB color coverage, its DCI-P3 coverage is not provided, and there are no settings for different color coverages, meaning that this is probably not an ideal monitor for photo and video editing.

However, for the rest of us non-creatives, it’s a blast to use. It still looks great with its dual QHD (5,120 x 1,440) resolution at a 165Hz refresh rate, and offers the kind of immersion for gaming and media that I found engrossing (I did have a powerful PC on hand to run it, of course).

This isn’t meant as a gaming monitor necessarily and is more targeted to worker bees who need a lot of screen real-estate to spread out on. This is an aspect I really appreciate, as I often have to look at several tabs to access and process different bits of information for articles and reviews. Additionally, the monitor can snap windows to an assortment of grids for easy organization.

HP was thoughtful enough to include a pair of 3W speakers. They’re loud enough and sound fine if you just need some audio in a pinch. But, if you care about sound quality, you’ll really want to pair this monitor with some decent speakers. This is true of 99% of the monitors I test, mind you, and it’s still nice to have integrated speakers as a little extra for a well-rounded experience.

Performance: 4.5 / 5

Should I buy the HP E45C G5?

HP E45c G5 picture in picture

(Image credit: Future / James Holland)

Buy it if…

You hate switching windows or tabs
With this ultrawide panel, you no longer have to rifle through different tabs and windows to find what you’re looking for. You can streamline, organize, and spread out your workflow here.

You want an immersive experience
It might not be 4K, but the dual QHD screen is plenty sharp enough. And, with its 1500R curvature and ultrawide panel, you’ll be engrossed in whatever you’re doing.

You have multiple PCs to connect
As a monitor meant for multi-taskers, the HP E45c comes with the right kind of features including KVM and picture-by-picture so you can seamlessly switch between two different computers.

Don’t buy it if…

You’re on a budget
Compared to buying two separate monitors, the price is right. But if you’re on a budget, you can get a decent monitor for much less. You’ll just need to go smaller.

You need portrait mode
If you’re considering alternatives to a second display, just be aware that by the very nature of this monitor, ergonomically speaking you’ll be forever locked in landscape mode.

Swipe to scroll horizontally
AttributesNotesRating
ValueWhile the HP E45c G5 is pricey, it’s worth it when you consider the cost of getting two separate QHD monitors.4 / 5
DesignThe ergonomics are limited but the port selection makes up for it. Plus, it’s easy to assemble.4.5 / 5
PerformanceThe ultrawide screen is a dream to use. I’ll say it again – it’s highly immersive.4.5 / 5
Average ratingAn immersive screen, ability to use multiple sources or at least spread out, and a good selection of ports all add up to a great monitor for multi-taskers.4.5 / 5

Also consider

Image

Corsair Xeneon Flex 45WQHD240 OLED
It’s much more expensive, but this monitor from Corsair has one advantage – you can bend it to adjust for different situations, as you might not always want that much of a curve. It also comes with HDR, though the ergonomics are just as limited.

Read our full Corsair Xeneon Flex 45WQHD240 OLED review

Image

Samsung Odyssey OLED G9
If you prefer a 4K resolution, this ultrawide monitor has it along with the deep contrast levels we’ve come to expect from OLED-equipped displays. Of course, the port variety could be better and it is more expensive.

Read our full Samsung Odyssey OLED G9 review

How I tested the HP E45C G5

  • Used regularly for a couple of weeks
  • Tested with multiple sources
  • Tried out all the features

I used the HP E45c G5 regularly for a couple weeks. I tested it with various games, as well as connecting multiple sources to see what it’s like viewing them side-by-side with its wide 32:9 aspect ratio. I tested the various features as well, not to mention the built-in speakers.

After spending some time with the HP E45c G5, it’s obvious that this monitor is for those looking for an impressive visual experience for gaming, for instance, or, as HP has positioned it, for streamlining and organizing a large workflow.

I’ve tested a lot of tech gear over the years from laptops to keyboards and speakers, and so have been able to use my expertise towards giving an honest and fair opinion, not to mention a critical eye, to any product I test.

  • First reviewed June 2024
James Holland
Freelance writer

James Holland loves audio gear! So much so that he covers all the ins and outs, good and bad for TechRadar and T3. Where does that so-called expertise come from? Not only is he a lifelong music-lover but he also works in the music industry and is a musician. When not testing headphones or listening to music, he loves to travel, rage at the latest PC games, and eat off-the-beaten-path but not too off-the-beaten-path food.