The display on the Dell XPS 15 is amazing, but it may not be large enough to work on when you're at a desk. External monitors are a great way of turning your portable laptop into a desktop setup. You can also extend available screen real estate by using the built-in panel with an external monitor to the side, allowing you to increase your levels of productivity tenfold. Here are some of the best computer monitors out there.
Amazing Bezel-less Quality
Dell's P2720D 27-inch monitor has a 2560x1440 resolution and IPS panel for a stunning picture, and its lack of bezel makes it seem like the picture reaches edge to edge. Connect with HDMI or DisplayPort, take advantage of five USB-A 3.0 ports, and mount the monitor easily thanks to VESA compatibility.
There are many great 4K panels out there, and Dell's U2720Q is an excellent example. It has a minimal bezel around the 27-inch display, color reproduction is nearly perfect, and the adjustable stand lets you get the proper angle. Connect with HDMI, DisplayPort, or USB-C, and take advantage of a three-year warranty.
Best for design
If you need a professional-grade monitor with perfect sRGB and Rec. 709 color reproduction and HDR10 support, BenQ's PD2700U is a great pick. It has a slim bezel, the stand is adjustable, and the IPS panel provides wide viewing angles. Choose from preset color modes for design and editing tasks and connect with DVI, HDMI, or DisplayPort.
This 29-inch Ultrawide monitor gives you acres of display real estate to get your work done and benefits from a Full HD resolution all the way across. It has a bunch of connectivity options, including HDMI and DisplayPort, and it even supports HDR10 and a 99% sRGB color gamut, which is impressive to see on something this affordable.
This AOC Agon monitor's 35-inch panel is curved to better take in all the action, and it's supported by an adjustable stand with RGB lighting on the back. The 3440x1440 resolution is brilliant, it has a 120Hz refresh rate and a 4ms response time for a smooth picture, and it features G-Sync compatibility to match up with the hardware in your laptop if you configure the XPS 15 with an NVIDIA GPU. Connect with DisplayPort or HDMI.
This handy portable display from AOC won't destroy your budget. What makes this display interesting is the size, allowing you to pack it into your bag and take it abroad. It's perfect for using your Dell XPS 15 at a hotel while on vacation or a business trip. The 1920x1080 resolution will also allow you to get much more done with the power of two screens to work with.
Choosing the right external monitor
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Any of the monitors in our roundup will work well with the Dell XPS 15 so long as you have the correct cabling to connect the two together. If we were to make a suggestion to consider, it would be the Dell UltraSharp P2720D, largely down to the quality of the panel. You'll be able to get a lot done, and everything you do on your XPS 15 will look spectacular on either display.
Cables to connect your Dell XPS 15
The XPS 15 (9500) does not come rocking HDMI or DisplayPort. To keep the design looking clean and to make it as thin as possible, Dell had to remove these ports and instead rely on just a single Thunderbolt 3 port to handle video out. This means you'll need to pick up a cable to connect your XPS 15 to a monitor we recommend (unless it allows for Thunderbolt input). Luckily, we rounded up two cables below that will come in handy.
Thunderbolt 3 to HDMI cable ($15 at Amazon)
With no HDMI on the XPS 15, you're instead left relying on the Thunderbolt 3 port, and this cable will make the magic happen.
Thunderbolt 3 certified USB-C cable ($20 at Amazon)
To connect to a USB-C or Thunderbolt 3 monitor, get one of these Thunderbolt 3-certified cables.
Thunderbolt 3 to DisplayPort cable ($18 at Amazon)
When your display takes DisplayPort, this cable will make it possible to hook it up to your XPS 15.
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Rich Edmonds was formerly a Senior Editor of PC hardware at Windows Central, covering everything related to PC components and NAS. He's been involved in technology for more than a decade and knows a thing or two about the magic inside a PC chassis. You can follow him on Twitter at @RichEdmonds.