This affordable 4K monitor might not offer much in the way of menu options or high-end gaming perks, but it offers impressive resolution and colour for a fraction of the price you'd normally pay.
Great value 4K
Decent viewing angle
5ms response time
Not many menu options
Colour could be better
Why you can trust TechRadar We spend hours testing every product or service we review, so you can be sure you’re buying the best. Find out more about how we test.
It wasn’t that long ago that you could expect to pay a pretty penny for the privilege of putting a 4K monitor on your PC, but these days you don’t have to fork out the big bucks for high pixel counts.
One of the newer players in the local budget high-resolution display market is Chinese security company Dahua Technology.
The 28-inch LM28-F420 4K monitor we have here is the first product we’ve looked at from Dahua and our first impressions are pretty good.
- These are the best 4k monitors on the market
Price and availability
While Dahua does have both US and UK shopfronts, this particular model is only available in Australia currently.
It's available at a number of Aussie online retailers for AU$269, which is a pretty amazing walkaway price for a big, high-res desktop screen.
With enough room to run two documents or web pages side by side, 28-inches should satisfy most budget-conscious buyers, but Dahua also has a 32-inch model with similar specs for around AU$400.
Design and features
Looking at the spec sheet, Dahua’s LM28-F420 is a productivity monitor, but you wouldn’t know it from looking at it.
The design borrows a lot from gaming monitors with an angular V-shaped stand design and a bright-red metal screen support.
That said, when looking at it from front on, you only see a tiny fraction of the loud support, and the minimal black bezels and white menu labels are pretty subtle.
The screen is 66.8cm wide, 36.8cm tall and 5.7cm at its thickest point, so even though it is a budget device there’s not really much blowout in the size.
The VESA display stand lacks any embellishments, but it feels solid and allows the screen to tilt forward or backward, level and even rotate up to 90º in one direction (if you happen to want to bust out some coding in 4K).
The panel uses LED technology in a Vertical Alignment (VA) pixel arrangement, which goes some way to explaining why it has an impressive looking 1000:1 contrast ratio and overall brightness.
Traditionally this type of display hasn’t been as good as IPS screens in both viewing angle and response rate, but they don’t seem to be an issue here.
There’s definitely some colour variation as you move anything past 30º, but the effect is subtle and most onscreen information is visible up to 178º.
Response time is also rated at just 5ms, so don’t fret about lag or display issues while gaming.
With a 60Hz refresh rate you’re not going to get far in online first person shooters, but for any games you want to play at UHD on your own, the display does include Freesync to keep any unwanted artefacts from affecting this high-res gaming display.
Here is the Dahua LM28-F420 Display configuration sent to TechRadar Pro for review:
Panel size: 28-inch
Panel type: VA
Resolution: 3,440 x 1,440
Pixel response: 5ms
Refresh rate: 60Hz
Inputs: 2 x HDMI 2.0, 1x DisplayPort v1.2, 1 x USB 2.0
Adjustment: +20 to -5 degrees tilt, +90 to -10 swivel, No pivot
Speakers: 2x 2W
Weight: 7kg without stand, 8.8Kg with stand
Dimensions: 637.9 x 368.5 x 57.4mm (WxHxD) with stand
The 28-inch monitor offers a generous workspace with enough room for you to run two documents side-by-side comfortably. Thanks to the high resolution and good 300 nit brightness, details are clear and documents are easy to read and edit. When you switch to media, the screen holds its own, making 4K YouTube clips and streamed UHD content look extremely clear.
This unit only features standard dynamic range, 8-bit colour processing, but it does offer 100% sRGB colour reproduction. By eye, the screen’s colour will vary from other monitors, so while it looks perfectly fine for media and the web, you wouldn’t want to trust it with any pro-level photo editing.
With two HDMI 2.0 ports and a DisplayPort 1.2, there’s enough inputs to get your screen running at the highest resolution possible, and while we wouldn’t recommend relying on them permanently, the screen does have a pair of backup 2W speakers for when you’re in a bind.
Don’t expect much in the way of advanced features or sophisticated menu interfaces. Picture-in-picture, colour presets and gaming tools are well beyond the scope of this display. Kogan and Acer have more feature-rich 28-inch 4K displays that are often on-sale at around the AU$300 mark if you’re happy to spend a bit more, but at this price we can't find anything that compares to this monitor.
If you want 4K on the tightest of budgets, then this is one of the best ways to get at it.
- We've also featured the best business monitor
Joel has been the in-house benchmark monkey for the Australian TechRadar team and Australia’s two biggest tech magazines (APC and TechLife) since 2014.