The LG 32UK550 provides an HDR10-compatible screen for the midrange market like the LG 27UK650 that offers excellent value and performance. Computing in 4K is much more comfortable and natural in this size, meaning the popularity of this model is almost guaranteed. The LG 32UK550 packs a lot of features for its segment, so let’s take a peek at what it has to offer for around half a grand.
LG 32UK550 Specifications
- Screen Size: 32Inches
- Resolution: 3840 x 2160 4K
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Panel Technology: Vertical Alignment (VA)
- Refresh Rate: 60Hz
- Response Time:5ms
- Contrast Ratio:3000:1
- Brightness: 300 cd/m²
- Built-in Speakers: Yes (2 x 5 Watts)
- Stand: Height – Yes
- Stand: Tilt – Yes
- Stand: Swivel – No
- Stand: Pivot– No
- VESA Compatibility: Yes (100 x 100)
- Connectivity: DisplayPort 1.2 x 1, HDMI 2.0 x 2, 3.5mm Audio Jack
Design and Features
The LG 32UK550 sports the familiar monitor aesthetic the brand is going with that looks subtle, but classy. The product is finished in matte on all of its parts, unlike previous models which come in white or silver. The display isn’t bezel-free, but the borders are thin enough to disappear into the background.
LG’s recent offerings had impeccable build quality unlike some of their older designs which were reported to be wobbly. The newer design sports the new ArcLinestand with a telescopic tube upright which offers height adjustments. You can’t pivot or swivel the monitor, but the chassis is tiltable and compatible with VESA mounts.
We’re not sure if the LG 32UK550 will include the centrally located JOG button like the rest of their models, but there are no button layouts in the initial images. This model, after all, sits at a lower tier than the previous variants from the Korean firm we tested.
The LG 32UK550 is aptly equipped in the connectivity department for the uses we think its suitable for. The I/O panel at the back includes DisplayPort 1.2 and dual HDMI 2.0a connectors with HDCP 2.2 compatibility. This kind of setup is perfect for the all-around gamer who owns several platforms, or the media consumption junky who does a lot of streaming.
There is a pair of 5-Watt speakers built into the LG 32UK550 which should be powerful enough for near-field listening. We can’t guarantee that the sound will be crisp and detailed, but a 5-Watt output is on par, if not better, than a cheap 2.0 set.
Display and Performance
The LG 32UK550 sports a 32-inch VA panel with a 3840 x 2160 resolution, 60Hz refresh rate, and 4ms response time. The WLED backlight on the screen can only go up to 300cd/m2 while the contrast ratio reaches a full 3000:1. This model promises HDR compatibility, but there are a few specs that might not be up to the task.
The backlight for the LG 32UK550 doesn’t seem to have pulsing capabilities or an extended output that is required for HDR. VESA’s HDR400 standard which is the bare minimum requires at least 400cd/m2. We’re pretty confident from these facts that this model will employ a tuned emulation of HDR representation that adds an overlay instead of increasing the image’s aspects.
LG also mentioned a DCI-P3 color coverage of 95% which is sufficient for true HDR, but reachable only by a select few. Today’s VA technology is capable of extended gamuts and eye-popping vibrancy, but we have yet to test a monitor that reaches this specification. At least, this guarantees that the LG 32UK550 can provide 100% sRGB for media creation and editing if the brand’s factory calibration proves to be dead-accurate.
But aside from our questions and speculations, we’re glad that LG is now offering HDR compatibility with midrange monitors. To compare, the 32UD60-B which is more or less the same price can only provide SDR outputs. That model doesn’t offer anything unique, but its a great entertainment display for gaming and movie watching.
Like the other LG HDR monitors, the 32UK550 will activate this feature automatically as soon as it detects an HDR signal. Prospective buyers don’t have to worry since you won’t be locked out of selecting options or tweaking the monitor. There should be a few filters for HDR gaming, movies, and editing in the OSD you can choose from.
The professional performance aspect of the LG 32UK550 is yet to be discovered and tested, but we can already tell that it will be great for gaming. The VA panel’s vibrancy and contrast will be perfect for any game, while movies can look more profound or convincing. Add in the ability to apply an HDR effect, and you can enjoy a difference your old display cannot offer.
The LG 32UK550 is also FreeSync certified and protected from tears and stutters from 40Hz to 60Hz. You have to use an AMD GPU-equipped PC or an Xbox One X console to take advantage of all its features, but we’re pretty sure there’s room for another like the PS4 Pro in this model. LG didn’t mention it, but we’re confident that FreeSync will also function on the HDMI 2.0 slots as it has on other new models.
Thoughts on the LG 32UK550
The LG 32UK550 is something we’re looking forward to since its midrange pricing means it can reach more consumers who are looking for a pseudo-HDR monitor. We’re not certain if this model is professional grade or ideal for editing and graphics, but the specs guarantee that it will be fantastic for entertainment and gaming. We can’t expect true HDR imaging from this model, but that tech still isn’t available at prices this low.
The LG 32UK550 will start selling in Japan for around ¥55,000, or $485 before taxes. Global availability will follow shortly and selling should begin around the $500 mark in the US and EU. You can check out this page for further information or keep checking this page for the latest updates.