LG 38GL950G-B Review

8.4 Total Score

Our review unit, the LG 38GL950G-B makes for a dream ultrawide gaming monitor with a gorgeous 38-inch display that boasts a short 1 millisecond response time, 144Hz refresh rate and Nvidia G-Sync support.

  • Gorgeous, vivid 38-inch curved display
  • Sharp 3840 x 1600 resolution
  • Low response time, high refresh rate
  • Supports Nvidia G-Sync
  • Lacks built-in speakers
  • Missing USB-C port
  • Expensive

The LG 38GL950G-B UltraGear curved gaming monitor ticks all the right boxes for gaming and looks fantastic doing it. The highlight here is the 38-inch, 3840 x 1600 resolution Nano IPS display that boasts Nvidia G-Sync, a 1 millisecond response time and 144Hz refresh rate, a feature set that make it one of the best gaming monitors.

It looks even great from behind, thanks to a glowing light ring that casts RGB hues across the room.  But for the price, the 38GL950G-B is a serious investment, on that would really benefit from built-in speakers and a USB-C port.

LG 38GL950G-B Design

Sleek, beaming and aggressive with RGB lighting on the rear, the 38GL950G-B is enough proof that LG has gamers’ needs at heart. Ideally, I can’t decide what’s more appealing here, the monitor’s curved 38-inch, 3840 x 1600 resolution display or the mesmerizing LED lighting on the rear of the panel. Whichever excites you, friends and colleagues will have something to say about the 38GL950G-B, whether they walk in front or behind the monitor.

The supple lights (LG calls them Sphere Lighting 2.0) are on the rear of the 38GL950G-B, so you can really see them. However, the lights do get bright enough to bounce off nearby walls and even the surface of your desk.

Apart from the light flashes of color, the monitor’s chassis is designed from textured black plastic, while the cylindrical arm is hefty metal. It measures 35.3 x 22.2 x 10.2 inches with the stand. Even with the modern design, the curved display is quite thick, at 2.3 inches at its widest point.

The screen offers tilt adjustment, so you can adjust the vertical angle both upward and downward. Unfortunately, it doesn’t swivel, meaning you’ll have to sit directly in front of it for the best viewing experience. LG’s marketing material claim that the 38GL950G-B can pivot, but you’ll only be lucky to rotate more than a few degrees.

LG 38GL950G-B front

Ports & Interface

On the LG 38GL950G-B, you find an HDMI port and a full-size DisplayPort for video output on the back of the monitor. You can connect your PC to the monitor via an upstream USB 3.0 (type-B) ports, and you also have a pair of downstream USB 3.0 ports for charging your smartphone and other peripherals.

All these USB ports are on the back of the monitor, next to HDMI and DisplayPort, which makes it a bit difficulty to use. There is also a headphone/mic jack that give you the convenience of keeping your gaming headset plugged directly into the monitor. But remember there aren’t dedicated headphone and mic jacks, so for streaming you might need a splitter.

LG 38GL950G-B rear

LG 38GL950G-B UltraGear Performance

The 38GL950G-B is a premium monitor designed for pro-gamers and creatives, and it easily performs as one. It’s a curved 38-inch, Nano IPS display with a dense 3840 x 1600 resolution (WQHD+). If you’re not keen, you can easily mistake this monitor for a TV, especially due to its ultrawide 21:9 aspect ratio, which renders content across a wide but narrow canvas.

Playing Resident Evil 2 remake is exciting, as the monitor makes zombies – the slow, shambling, groaning type – incredible again. You are easily immersed in the shuffling lumps of bloody meat battering down, and the tumble through broken windows and lunge from the shadows is brought to life than before. And in a game that’s certainly opposite in terms of tone and color palate, Scavenger looks amazing, with all its blue them and fluid movement. Simply put, no matter what game you throw at this monitor, it looks amazing.

The amazing gaming performance is not only due to the 144Hz refresh rate, but it has been pushed down to just 1ms, meaning even the most fast-paced online games, you won’t be held back by a mediocre monitor. Here, you have excellent picture quality and fast performance – all you have to deal with is a high price tag.

In addition to its gaming prowess, the LG 38GL950G-B is a G-Sync panel, which makes lots of sense at such a high resolution. In some games like Metro Exodus, you’ll be getting around 50 fps, but thanks to G-Sync, everything feels like you’re playing at the native framerate. G-Sync, for as long as you have a compatible Nvidia graphics card, is basically like cheating and that’s how we all love it.

LG 38GL950G-B side

Productivity Performance

When not gaming, this monitor will let you do some work on the side. With an Ultrawide resolution, you’re able to open two large browser windows side-by-side without ever having to alt-tab on your PC. You really save big on time, and at this point, we easily recommend an Ultrawide monitor to anyone that often has lots of work that needs to be done at their computer.

Overall, the 38GL950G-B is a premium Ultrawide monitor that’s super powerful, delivers excellent picture quality – even though the ludicrous price locks out most users shopping on a tight budget. More affordable 34-inch alternatives include our Editors’ Choice the Alienware AW3420DW and the ASUS ROG Swift PG349Q, sure, you’ll spend less but you lose on the premium design (especially rear LED lighting) and short response rate – respectively with either alternatives. So, if you want the best of the best and don’t care about price, the LG 38GL950G-B makes a convincing statement for itself.

Bottom Line

The LG 38GL950G-B makes for a dream ultrawide gaming monitor with a gorgeous 38-inch display that boasts a short 1 millisecond response time, 144Hz refresh rate and Nvidia G-Sync support. And unlike the Alienware AW3420DW, this 38-inch monitor has a pixel-packed resolution (3840 x 1600) that’s a perfect match for its size. Now, combine that excellent feature set with strong performance and beautiful aesthetic – fully with cool RGB lighting – and it’s hard not to love the 38GL950G-B (for as long as you can crack the price).

But when you spend just under two grand on a monitor, you should expect perfection, something the 38GL950G-B fails to achieve. As if not having built-in speakers isn’t bad enough, LG went ahead and omitted a USB-C (Thunderbolt 3) for future-proofing this investment.

If you’re not on a tight budget, the LG 38GL950G-B should be at the top of your list. However, if you’re not willing to spend so much, the 34-inch Alienware AW3420DW gets you a WQHD (3440×1440) resolution display and G-Sync capabilities, although its refresh rate maxes out at 120Hz.

LG 38GL950G-B 38 inch Ultragear Nano IPS 1ms Curved Gaming Monitor with 144HZ Refresh Rate and NVIDIA G-SYNC, Black

$1,299.99  in stock
2 new from $1,299.99
3 used from $1,269.99
as of June 13, 2024 9:05 am
LG 38GL950G-B Review
LG 38GL950G-B Review
Digital Weekly