LG UltraWide 40WP95C-W Thunderbolt Display review: A curved display with plenty of space

Posted:
in Current Mac Hardware
The LG UltraWide 40WP95C-W is an exceptional curved Thunderbolt Display that provides valuable screen space to Mac users.

LG curved ultra-wide Thunderbolt Display
LG curved ultra-wide Thunderbolt Display

Specifications

This LG monitor is an ultra-wide display with a resolution of 5120 by 2160, commonly referred to as a 5K2K display. With a diagonal measurement of 39.7-inches, that gives us a pixel density of 139.97.

For reference, Apple's 5K Studio Display has a density of 245 pixels-per-inch and the 16-inch MacBook Pro clocks in at 226 PPI. That makes the LG 40WP95C-W notably lower than Apple's panels.






Compared to the MacBook Pro, it is somewhat understandable as you sit a little further from the display and you don't have such a high density to achieve "retina" resolution.

That said, going from the Studio Display to the 40WP95C-W, there is a visible difference in sharpness. While it is a more than acceptable resolution, the Studio Display is very crisp with a very high pixel density for a 32-inch display.

The display has a 5ms response time and a 1000:1 contrast ratio. LG says it supports more than 1.007 billion colors and covers 98 percent of the P3 wide color gamut. Technically, it supports HDR, but the brightness won't yield nearly as impressive results as something like the Pro Display XDR at three times the price.

At its brightest, the 40WP95C-W measures up at 300 nits. This level of brightness is commonplace amongst third-party monitors. We kept the monitor at 70 percent in our usage, but if you're in an overly-bright environment, it might feel a tad dim.

Partially through testing, we enabled the built-in ambient light sensor. This sensor operates just like Apple's and will adjust the display based on the brightness in the room.

Physical controls on the monitor
Physical controls on the monitor


A physical joystick on the bottom of the display is used to bring up the on-screen menu. With this, you can adjust the brightness, volume, and other settings.

Ports and connectivity

LG's 40WP95C-W monitor connects primarily via Thunderbolt. It supports Thunderbolt 4, and a nice white Thunderbolt cable is included in the box. Matching the cable to the display's color is a good touch.

Rear ports
The LG's rear ports


On the back of the monitor, you'll find the upstream Thunderbolt port to connect to your Mac and a second downstream Thunderbolt port. With the second port, you can connect a second display.

Thunderbolt cable
Thunderbolt cable


The Thunderbolt port supports Power Delivery and can charge your Mac up to 96W.

Aside from the Thunderbolt ports, there is a DisplayPort and dual HDMI inputs. The HDMI runs at a lower resolution, supporting a maximum of 3440 by 1440.

What's great about using HDMI, though, is you can run two machines simultaneously. Two computers can be connected simultaneously and run side-by-side in Picture-by-Picture (PbP) mode.

Lastly, there's a 3.5mm audio port on the back too. Granted, if you don't want to use it, there are 10W stereo speakers in the display too.

Two 5Gbps USB-A ports
Two 5Gbps USB-A ports


Hidden behind the right side of the display are two USB 3.1 Type-A ports capable of 5Gbps of data.

Design

We love the design of LG's 40WP95C-W display. It may not be as premium as the Studio Display with an all-metal design, but it's one of the nicest third-party monitors we've tested.

It comes with a highly-adjustable metal stand. There's quite a bit of weight in it as we moved it around the studio. The bottom of the stand is a large, simplistic arc.

The curved stand of LG's monitor
The curved stand of LG's monitor


This arc adequately supports the display but also gives you plenty of room to work. Instead of taking up a chunk of your desk, it's a very thin line.

The stand snaps into place on the back of the monitor easily and can be done by a single person. A large ball joint connects the stand to the mounting plate, making it adjustable.

The default stand is very adjustable
The default stand is very adjustable


You can tilt the display up and down and pivot it left and right. Apple charges a premium for its height-adjustable stand, whereas LG's can adjust its height by default.

The display has a slight curve which is perfect for an expansive display. When we used our last 5K2K display, it was flat. As we looked to the edges of the display, it required more head movement and refocusing on the content.

This curve isn't shallow, but it's not too drastic, either. It allows us to comfortably use the whole display while increasing how immersive the experience of using the display is.

There are relatively small bezels on the display, and it also has minimal movement. As a result, the monitor barely moved when we'd inevitably smack the top of our desk. This is vastly improved from the UltraFine displays that bubbled with typical typing.

We're a little torn on those rear USB ports. We very much hate that they're USB-A ports, as we have only a few type-A devices around these days. They should be type-C in this day and age.

If you have short-term use devices, the placement is excellent. For example, you can connect a thumb drive and remove it without turning the whole thing around. The downside is if you have anything left plugged in, the visible cables are an eyesore.

Living with an ultra-wide display

An ultra-wide display isn't going to be for everyone. Instead, it's a niche product that greatly benefits certain users, especially those who write code or rely on linear editing applications.

LG has a great curved display
LG makes a great curved display


Our workflow involves a lot of video editing, which is ideal for a display this wide. The extra real estate allows us to see more of the timeline simultaneously.

We can open up our color boards, effects browser, and angle editor at the same time, with plenty of space to spare.

Full screen video editor
Full screen video editing


When not running Final Cut Pro fullscreen, we can run other windows side-by-side. It's great for having a browser window open and a Numbers spreadsheet and Notes. That makes it easy to edit a video while keeping the other information on-screen.

A typical workspace
A typical workspace


Aside from video editing, audio editors and programmers will also love this display.

Resolution options
Resolution options


Thus far, we've been running the display at its native resolution. There are multiple other scaled modes to choose from, including 2560 by 1080, which will double the size of everything on the screen.

Should you buy the LG 40WP95C-W?

If the aspect ratio of the 40WP95C-W appeals to you, there are very few reasons not to give it a shot. It looks great, has a sturdy and adjustable stand, and connects via Thunderbolt.

Compared to the Studio Display, it isn't quite as tightly integrated into macOS, but it's still an excellent display to boost your productivity.

The speakers aren't fantastic, and the brightness could see a boost, but these are far from dealbreakers.

LG curved ultra-wide Thunderbolt Display
LG curved ultra-wide Thunderbolt Display


Pros
  • Elegant curved display with strong all-metal adjustable stand

  • larger 5K2K resolution

  • 96W of power via Thunderbolt with a second downstream Thunderbolt port

  • Ambient light sensor to automatically adjust brightness

  • HDR support
Cons
  • Only average brightness and speakers

  • USB-A ports rather than USB-C on the side

Rating: 4 out of 5

Where to buy

The LG UltraWide 40WP95C-W sells for $1,796.99 at B&H, as well as at Adorama and Amazon.

Read on AppleInsider

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 10
    I tried this monitor to replace my 38" curved UW but the smaller pixel pitch makes text too small when running at full resolution without scaling. The market is still missing a 40" monitor at 220 ppi which seems to be the right size for normal desktop viewing distances.
    boboliciouswatto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 10
    danoxdanox Posts: 2,696member
    Thanks for the on going monitor reviews, buying a curated Apple monitor gets easier with each review, quality really does come at a price.
    edited July 2022 FileMakerFellerOfer
  • Reply 3 of 10
    boboliciousbobolicious Posts: 1,135member
    I tried this monitor to replace my 38" curved UW but the smaller pixel pitch makes text too small when running at full resolution without scaling. The market is still missing a 40" monitor at 220 ppi which seems to be the right size for normal desktop viewing distances.
    I run curved 40" 4K (with TV capability, but no Thunderbolt) which I find ideal for my work, offering WYSIWYG D size images, and matches the cinema/thunderbolt 110 ppi, and concur an 8K option would offer the ppi you suggest. 40" is also optimal for 4K video @ desktop distance

    www.usa.philips.com/c-p/BDM4037UW_27/brilliance-4k-ultra-hd-lcd-display-with-multiview

    I have asked if both should might be worth consideration by / from from Apple, as perhaps actual Apple TVs...?

    Then again non OEM connects with most everything, and offers PIP and other options., and free utilities like Quickshade offer rapid brightness adjustment from the keyboard...
    dewme
  • Reply 4 of 10
    entropysentropys Posts: 4,133member
    The studio display’s actual display is hard to beat, true. 

    Where it falls down is ports and the incredible decision to not offer an adjustable stand as standard in the box. It actually angers me a bit to contemplate the meeting at Apple where that decision was workshopped. The Apple engineers sold us out to the margin calculators.

    So here we are, where LG has produced a larger display, more flexible ports, and an adjustable stand capable of handling a heavier display, at a similar price.
    edited July 2022 dewmewatto_cobraOfer
  • Reply 5 of 10
    boboliciousbobolicious Posts: 1,135member
    entropys said:
    The studio display’s actual display is hard to beat, true. 

    Where it falls down is ports and the incredible decision to not offer an adjustable stand as standard in the box. It actually angers me a bit to contemplate the meeting at Apple where that decision was workshopped. The Apple engineers sold us out to the margin calculators.

    So here we are, where LG has produced a larger display, more flexible ports, and an adjustable stand capable of handling a heavier display, at a similar price.
    ...
     
    ...does most everything the post 2011 Apple does tighten the financial 'margin' for those with a life investment in the platform ? Pre 2012 my sense was Apple pursued profit to enable better serving customers as a development priority, yet since then my sense is Apple has been pursuing shareholder profit as the end goal and at the expense of customers... Is it their option, and in the end ours to support...?
    edited July 2022 watto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 10
    9secondkox29secondkox2 Posts: 2,568member
    Article has an error referring to studio display as having a high density for a 32” display. 

    We wish. 

    It’s actually only 27”
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 7 of 10
    entropysentropys Posts: 4,133member
    entropys said:
    The studio display’s actual display is hard to beat, true. 

    Where it falls down is ports and the incredible decision to not offer an adjustable stand as standard in the box. It actually angers me a bit to contemplate the meeting at Apple where that decision was workshopped. The Apple engineers sold us out to the margin calculators.

    So here we are, where LG has produced a larger display, more flexible ports, and an adjustable stand capable of handling a heavier display, at a similar price.
    ...
     
    ...does most everything the post 2011 Apple does tighten the financial 'margin' for those with a life investment in the platform ? Pre 2012 my sense was Apple pursued profit to enable better serving customers as a development priority, yet since then my sense is Apple has been pursuing shareholder profit as the end goal and at the expense of customers... Is it their option, and in the end ours to support...?
    Well, yes. This is what Jobs said about that very thing back in 1998:

    What happened at Apple, to be honest, over the years was the goal used to be to make the best computers in the world. And that was goal one. Goal two, we got from Hewlett-Packard actually which was "we have to make a profit". Because if we don't make a profit we can't do goal one. So, yeah, I mean we enjoyed making a profit, but the purpose of making a profit was so we can make the best computers in the world. Along the way somewhere those two got reversed. The goal is to make a lot of money and well, if we have to make some good computers well ok we'll do that... 'cause we can make a lot of money doing that. And, it's very subtle. It's very subtle at first, but it turns out it's everything. That one little subtle flip... takes 5 years to see it, but that one little subtle flip in 5 years means everything.
    That was a great general conference to really get the shift from “Beleaguered Apple” to a growing Apple. Jobs also said this famous line at the very same meeting:
    Lastly, we're really big on making computers our friends can afford, and not all our friends are Larry Ellison. So, we've got to make computers that are really affordable and I think that's another place that Apple got really off-track and we are just driving that really hard.
    dewmewatto_cobraOfer
  • Reply 8 of 10
    Robots78Robots78 Posts: 20member
    I just got this monitor to last week to go with my new Mac Studio. I'm upgrading from a 27" iMac and couldn't stomach paying $1,600 to buy what is essentially the same monitor that was in the iMac, even if it is very high quality. I was also interested in something that would give me a multiple-monitor-sized workspace in a single display. There aren't many options for a large, relatively-high PPI ultrawide display, this and the very similar Dell were the two most interesting choices.

    For the most part, I'm very happy with the LG. The stand is great and very easy to reposition. Picture quality is very good, but not at the same level as the iMac/Studio Display - contrast/blacks aren't as good and brightness is somewhat lacking but acceptable. Colors are great and uniformity is very good. The native 5120x2160 resolution is too small for my taste, so I'm running it scaled to 3840x1620, which is perfect for me. This gives me more vertical space than the iMac and of course plenty of horizontal space. I don't see any artifacts or other issues from the scaling, which some reviewers had complained about. I installed the Magnet app to help wrangle my windows across the large workspace. 

    I'm quite happy with this monitor for now, but could see wanting something brighter and with even more space and pixel density in the future. I think a 49" 8K (equivalent to side-by-side 4K displays) could be perfect... once it exists!
    entropyswatto_cobra
  • Reply 9 of 10
    thttht Posts: 5,355member
    entropys said:
    The studio display’s actual display is hard to beat, true. 

    Where it falls down is ports and the incredible decision to not offer an adjustable stand as standard in the box. It actually angers me a bit to contemplate the meeting at Apple where that decision was workshopped. The Apple engineers sold us out to the margin calculators.

    So here we are, where LG has produced a larger display, more flexible ports, and an adjustable stand capable of handling a heavier display, at a similar price.
    ...does most everything the post 2011 Apple does tighten the financial 'margin' for those with a life investment in the platform ? Pre 2012 my sense was Apple pursued profit to enable better serving customers as a development priority, yet since then my sense is Apple has been pursuing shareholder profit as the end goal and at the expense of customers... Is it their option, and in the end ours to support...?
    No. Apple's margin policies have been very consistent in the post NeXT takeover era. The vast majority of the ire stems from the Internet and social media highlights, or enables, edge cases to be emotionally charged issues, as if they were mainstream. It's best to think of Tweets, posts, Instagrams as a negative 2¢, not a positive 2¢. Negative as they are more often emotionally charged mob comments, rather than conference room debate, and it just makes people stop having perspective.

    Apple has made one, just one, external monitor with a height adjustable stand: the Apple Studio Display 15" in 1998. One of the first LCD displays and was available for $2000. Every monitor since did not have height adjustment - they only had tilt - until the Pro Display XDR and the modern Studio Display 27", which have it as options.

    I had the Thunderbolt Display for about 7 years and an LG UF27 succeeded it. As has been common for virtually every monitor, if people needed to adjust the height of a monitor, they just put something under it. There were monitor blocks and shelves and whatnot if people didn't want to cheap out with a stack of paper or old book. My LG UF27 is height adjustable, but it has a rather vexing problem of not being left-to-right level. Just a little needle in your eye every once in a while. It came out of the box that way. My Thunderbolt Display didn't have this problem and the Studio Display 27 will not either. Not having height adjustment or swiveling makes it a lot easier to be level.

    So it's the same old tradeoffs. The LG UF27 is a nice option as it is a 220 DPI display with Thunderbolt, but it seems to have QA issues, and you may be unlucky for $1300. The ASD27 offers some more intangibles for +$300, and will likely offer better build quality. People will choose based on what is important to them.
  • Reply 10 of 10
    fastasleepfastasleep Posts: 6,394member
    I set one of these up for my sister’s office. Two things:

    1) It was not very bright out of the box, after digging around in the menus I realized these and the pile of other LG models I ordered for the office all default to 50% brightness! That, and switching to a different color profile (all in the display’s hardware menus, not in macOS) made it much better. 

    2) She wasn’t super happy with the scaling options, the options in System Preferences were either too small or too big. To get an intermediate scaling size, I set up BetterDummy and it works great. Recommended for any display which macOS doesn’t offer the scaling option you’re wanting. I did, however not find a way to get it to do it’s full refresh rate at 72Hz, I could only get 50 or 60Hz out of it. Not sure why. 

    Also, HDR mode dims the whole thing pretty low to add support for brighter highlights. It’s useless. 

Sign In or Register to comment.