Although it sells these days for much less than competing 27-inch monitors, the HP M27ha is surprisingly feature-rich. Not only does this budget monitor, best for household use or home-office, it rings an IPS-screen with narrow bezels and great sRGB color coverage.
The HP 22H94AA#ABA model also adds several extra uncommon features at this price range: built-in speakers, ability to pivot from landscape to portrait mode, and a DisplayPort connector.
All these features and a sleek design are enough for it to take a place in our latest Editors’ Choice for general-purpose, flat-panel budget monitors, alongside the smaller HP 24mh we reviewed just before it.
Design & Features
The HP M27ha is a handsome monitor, sporting a matte black bottom bezel and nearly invisible side and top bezels, maximizing its screen area and making it a perfect monitor for a multi-monitor setup. The back of the monitor and the stand are matte black, with a vertical stand shaft emerging from the compact base to connect with the cabinet. This connection supports a surprising range of ergonomic options (tilt, swivel and height) for a monitor that costs this less.
It features a 27-inch in-plane switching (IPS) screen at full HD (FHD) resolution, aka 1,920 by 1,080 pixels or 1080p. At that resolution and screen size, pixel pitch comes to around 0.311mm and brightness level of 250 cd/m2, 60Hz refresh rate and a response rate of 5ms. That spec-sheet is fine for general use, though, it might a little low for tasks like pixel-precise photo editing. The LG 34WN80C-B or the Sceptre C355W-3440UN are good choices for professional photo editing, thanks to its wide sRGB color gamut coverage (99 percent) and HDR10 compatibility.
Ports & Speakers
Built into the back of the HP M27ha (on either side) are two slots, each holding a 2-watt speaker. Sound quality and volume from these speakers is average, but they’re still a fine addition, particularly when you need to connect to a video source – maybe a Blu-ray player or a game console – that doesn’t have a speaker of its own.
Most discount monitors only have two video inputs: HDMI and VGA: The latter, which supports analog video was once popular on PCs, but is rarely seen on new systems. The HP M27ha FHD monitor ups the game by adding a DisplayPort connector, a welcome feature for a budget panel, alongside an audio-in jack. All ports are downward facing, which will make them less accessible, as compared to outward-facing rear ports.
We usually expect 27-inch office monitors to be a bit expensive, but the HP M27ha defies all odds to deliver good color quality in a splendid design, without costing too much. This isn’t your typical HDR display by any standard, and you don’t expect perfect pixels at this price, but a 1000:1 contrast ratio, 5ms response time and 250 cd/m2 brightness are more than ideal for basic computing needs
With some calibration, the HP 22H94AA#ABA delivers good visuals that you’d ordinarily get with more expensive monitors. That said, it still doesn’t deliver the same quality as you’d find on HDR monitors with higher resolutions. If you’re a professional content creator looking for perfect picture quality, a 4K panel like the 32-inch LG 32UN880-B is worth investing on.
All said, thanks to its IPS panel, the HP M27ha offers excellent viewing angles and with some tweaking, almost all home-office will be pleased by the overall setup. To all those features, factor in a sleek design and the M27ha becomes a great tool for productivity.
While the 27-inch HP M27ha has its own shortfalls that are typical of budget monitors, it also incorporates and array of features that are lacking in most low-priced panels. These features include a DisplayPort connector, a pair of built-in speakers and an ergonomic stand with height adjustment.
Like its 24-inch sibling, the HP M24ha, it also gets minimal screen bezels and an IPS screen with stellar sRGB coverage as well as great contrast – all contributing to its winning combination of features and performance.
For that, it gains our Editors’ Choice as a budget monitor for the home-office as well as general-purpose use. Note that the also-award winning ViewSonic VX2776-4K-MHD has a different set of budget superpowers – a 4K IPS screen with HDR10 and a frameless design – while pushing more brightness than the HP M27ha and showing nearly as wide color coverage.
Both stand on either ends of the discount-monitor pack, but in different ways, and trying to choose between them is a matter of which mix of features appeal to you most. If the ViewSonic’s frameless design doesn’t sell that panel to you, the HP M27ha is an excellent alternative at its screen size.