Microsoft’s Surface Book 2 and refreshed Surface Book 3 are undeniably some of the most potent modular laptops on the market, and their displays — available in two sizes — are gorgeous. However, there are plenty of times when extra screen real estate can make a big difference in productivity. And if you have room for a workstation, you might be looking for some external monitor suggestions. I’ve rounded up here the best for a variety of budgets and usage scenarios.

Multipurpose QHD

Dell UltraSharp U2719D

Editor’s pick

Dell’s U2719D 27-inch monitor has a 2560×1440 (QHD) resolution and IPS panel for a beautiful picture, and its lack of bezel makes it seem like the picture is much larger. Connect with HDMI or DisplayPort, take advantage of five USB-A 3.0 ports, and mount the monitor easily thanks to VESA support. This is a perfect monitor for productivity work.

$375 at Dell

$375 at Amazon

$422 at Walmart

27-Inch Curved Gaming


Staff gaming pick

With a 165Hz refresh rate, 1ms response time, and a slight curve to the QHD display, you’ll get an immersive, high-end gaming experience from this monitor. Connect with DisplayPort or HDMI, enjoy built-in RGB lighting, and hang your headset on the side with a retractable hook.

$441 at Amazon

$400 at Newegg

$400 at B&H

Slim 4K

HP Z27

HP’s Z27 is an excellent general-purpose pick for most people thanks to a beautiful slim build with adjustable stand, wide viewing angles thanks to an IPS panel, and USB-C connectivity. It has superb color and contrast for a vivid picture, a 60Hz refresh rate, an 8ms response time for smooth visuals, and it comes with HP’s Zero Bright Dots warranty.

$539 at HP

$514 at Amazon

$519 at Walmart

16:10 Aspect Ratio

Dell UltraSharp U2415

Sick of a 16:9 aspect ratio and want something taller with more screen real estate? The Dell U2415 has a 16:10 aspect ratio, 1920×1200 resolution, and precise sRGB color for a vivid picture. It has a thin bezel, it can be VESA mounted, and it includes HDMI, Mini DisplayPort, and DisplayPort for easy connectivity.

$255 at Dell

$264 at Amazon

$264 at Walmart

Best for Design

BenQ PD2720U

If you need a professional-grade monitor with precise sRGB, AdobeRGB, and DCI-P3 color reproduction, BenQ’s PD2720U is a great pick. The 27-inch display has a 4K resolution, HDR10 support, and unreal color. Connect with HDMI, DisplayPort, or Thunderbolt 3.

$1,100 at Amazon

$1,100 at Newegg

$1,100 at B&H

Portable 14-Inch Display

Lenovo ThinkVision M14

Lenovo’s ThinkVision M14 is our top pick for a portable display. It weighs just 1.26 pounds (570g) making it easy to carry around with your Book 2 or Book 3, it comes with a matte 1080p display with IPS panel, and its built-in stand keeps it at a proper angle for easy productivity. Connect with USB-C and enjoy 99% sRGB color.

$224 at Amazon

$227 at Newegg

$249 at B&H

Budget Gaming

BenQ Zowie XL2411P

If you’d like to partake in some gaming but don’t want to spend a lot on a suitable monitor, BenQ’s Zowie XL2411P should be a great pick. It has a 144Hz refresh rate, 1ms response time, and the FHD resolution looks great at 24 inches. It comes with a strong warranty, adjustable stand, and VESA mounting compatibility. Connect with DisplayPort, HDMI, or DVI.

$200 at Amazon

$200 at Best Buy

$292 at Walmart

Ultrawide Picture

LG 25UM58-P

For getting more done at once, this 25-inch ultrawide monitor from LG allows you to split the screen up to four times. It has a resolution of 2560×1080 with a 21:9 aspect ratio, an IPS panel, and two HDMI ports for connecting two PCs at once. Enjoy a refresh rate of 60Hz and 99% sRGB color reproduction.

$150 at Amazon

$219 at Newegg

$177 at B&H

If we’re making some suggestions

All of these great monitors can deliver a satisfying experience. But we don’t blame you if you’re still unsure of which one you’d like to spend your money on. If you need a monitor that can handle just about anything you throw at, Dell’s UltraSharp U2719D is a tremendous multipurpose pick. At 27 inches, it’s an ideal size, it has a 2560×1440 resolution and IPS panel for a beautiful picture, and Dell has done a great job of removing bezel almost completely. Overall, it’s a beautiful monitor that can fit into any home or office.

On the other hand, if you want to push your Surface Book 2‘s or Surface Book 3‘s hardware and get yourself a great PC gaming monitor, the MSI Optix MAG272CQR is a great 27-inch pick. We gave it a Recommended Award in our review, noting high refresh rate and low response time, superb color and contrast, and a high-quality build with built-in RGB lighting. It’s slightly curved to up immersion, and while it doesn’t natively support G-Sync (instead it supports FreeSync), I had no trouble enabling the technology to work with an NVIDIA RTX graphics card. If you’re looking to do some gaming with your Book 2 or Book 3, this monitor will make a great choice.