A 4K monitor used to be something that you saw on display at the store, and thought “Maybe, one day, if I win the lottery.” The good thing about technology though, is that before you know it, it’s actually quite affordable.
These days we think you can pick up a 4K monitor for pretty much any budget, and have your eyes feasting on 4K glory in no time. So in this article, we’ve tracked down the 18 best 4K monitors to fit your individual budget.
But First, What Exactly is 4K?
The term ‘4K’ refers to the horizontal dimensions of the resolution on a screen. High-definition (1280×720) was known as 720p, and when Full HD came along (1920×1080) came, that was also known as 1080p. Those bolded numbers should make sense when you match them up.
4K generally has an aspect ratio of (4096×2160) and is considered ultra-high-definition, or UHD. With approximately twice the vertical and horizontal pixels of 1080p, 4K media has effectively four times more pixels than full HD television.
When we talk about computer monitors, it’s ever so slightly different in the pixel count — the standard aspect ratio for 4K technology is (3840×2160) — but in essence it’s still four times more pixels than Full HD/1080p.
When you first start looking at computer monitors, you’re likely to see a whole lot of specs and numbers that are no doubt confusing. Despite the potential technobabble, those specs and numbers are really just covering a few aspects of the monitors you’ll want to consider.
Let’s make a quick breakdown of what everything means, so you can decide whether it’s important to you.
1. Screen Size
This is really about preference. How big is your desk? How far away will you be sitting from your monitor? A 27 to 32 inch screen size seems to be the industry norm at the moment and all the best standing desks can easily fit a pair of these, but you can find different size screens to suit your needs. It’s probably best to go into a store to do some window shopping for this, because you’ll be surprised at how much more ‘stuff’ you can show on a 4k monitor.
2. Panel Type
The panel describes the way in which the screen shows it’s image. The main panel types are:
So basically, if you’re on a budget or love hardcore, fast paced gaming, go for a TN panel. If you really value colour reproduction, and don’t really play games too much, go for the IPS panel.
3. Refresh Rate
You can think of refresh rate as how much blur there is when something moves fast across your 4K screen. Most 4k monitors will be around 30hz, which means the monitor refreshes 30 times per second. This is okay for general use, but will not be good at all for gaming, as there will be too much blurring.
Some very, very high end 4K monitors can be 144hz, which means very good performance in terms of reducing blurring for gaming and video. Be warned though, the higher the refresh rate, the (much) more expensive the 4K monitor.
Unless you really want to do hyper-competitive fast paced gaming, 30-60hz will do just fine.
4. Aspect Ratio
The aspect ratio is how wide your 4K screen is compared to how tall it is. Most monitors are a 16:9 ratio, but there are also ultra wide monitors that have a ratio of 21:9. Ultrawide monitors are more expensive, as they pack more pixels in the horizontal aspect of the monitor.
Find out what monitor connections your computer has, and make sure the 4K monitor you’re looking at is compatible. If you want 4k 60hz when you’re plugging into your gaming console, HDMI 2.0 is what you want. If you’re plugging into a PC, DisplayPort is a better option.
6. FreeSync and G-Sync
FreeSync and G-Sync are graphics/gaming technologies created by AMD and Nvidia, respectively. To make a long story short, both will reduce ‘screen tearing’ when you are gaming or watching video, which looks like this:
Both technologies can tax your graphics cards, but do provide a better gaming experience during fast paced action.
Hey, we get it — not everyone has the time to peruse a long list looking for the absolute best monitor. Some people don’t like shopping, and others just want to know what will give them the best value for their money.
With that in mind, we believe that the LG 27UK850-W 27″ 4K UHD IPS Monitor is the best value monitor for its price.
It has a little bit of everything for everyone — HDR10, excellent clarity, and FreeSync for great gaming — all at a very reasonable price.
AOC has done a great job with the U2790VQ in terms of offering great colour representation and crispy 4K goodness, all in a decently designed package. Of course at this price point it’s not going to offer all of the bells and whistles, but you do get a lot of bang for your buck.
While it doesn’t have stuff like High Dynamic Range (HDR), the colour gamut (range of colours) is still very good, and would be absolutely fine for some Photoshop work. It’s fair to say this is far from an high end gaming monitor, but you could still game in crisp 4k in a pinch, and as a monitor for productivity, you really can not go wrong at this price.
it does come with plenty of connectivity to cover all of your bases — the only real possible deal breaker is that it does not have a USB-C input, so If by chance your computer (e.g. Apple Macbook) only has USB 3.0 outputs for a monitor, you’ll probably want to keep looking.
If the lack of USB-C input doesn’t bother you, and you’re on a budget, the U2790VQ is a very solid choice.
The BenQ EW3270U is quite similar to the Dell monitor above, with the exception that it is a VA panel as opposed to an IPS panel. This means it has absolutely stellar color reproduction, but it has poor viewing angles if you ever head off to the side.
Somehow, even though it has a VA panel, which traditionally has high latency, the BenQ EW3270U manages to be actually quite good for gaming. It’s also very good for media watching, with deep blacks and good contrast ratio.
On the down side it doesn’t have terrific ergonomics due to it having limited adjustability (you can only tilt it). The HDR is also a little lacklustre, because the screen just can’t get bright enough to show all of that high dynamic range goodness. You should still notice a bit of HDR effect though.
It should be applauded though for its Brightness Intelligence Plus technology, which much like your cell phone, uses an ambient light sensor to automatically adjust the screen’s brightness for your lighting conditions.
Think of the Samsung U32J5 as very similar to the BenQ above, but without HDR and USB-C, and about $50 cheaper, depending on where you look. While reasonably stylish, it doesn’t have slim bezels like its competitors, which can be a distraction if you want to use more than one monitor.
Much like the BenQ EW3270U, it has very good color reproduction, and while the picture looks great in a dark room, it’ll never be bright enough if you are in a well-lit room. We should mention too that the ergonomics are similarly terrible.
On the plus side, it’s actually pretty decent for gaming, and 32 inches is a very good sized 4k monitor, so for the dollars to inches, it’s worth having a look at.
It is no secret that staring at a computer screen all day can be very hard on the eyes. That was one of the factors that motivated the development of the Samsung U32J5. One of the downsides of traditional LED screens is a persistent flicker caused by the backlight.
Utilizing new techniques from TUV Rheinland laboratories, this monitor uses a dynamic system that adjusts the backlight to eliminate that harmful flicker.
In addition, the monitor works to filter out blue light emanating from the monitor, as it has been proven that such light can damage the pupils. Finally, the monitor comes with several filter settings to ensure everything looks right if you are enjoying a movie as opposed to a game.
All of those features mean it’s a lot gentler on your eyes if you have long sessions in front of your 4K screen.
When you couple these advanced eye care measures with the stunning resolution and color of 4K technology, it is easy to see why this 28-inch computer monitor comes highly recommended, not only by us but by PC Magazine as well.
The BenQ PD2700U was designed with creative professionals in mind. It features high color accuracy and resolution that allows your animations, graphics, and visual effects look extraordinary. It offers 100% sRGB and Rec. 709 color spaces.
With this monitor, you can adjust the visualization display to suit your current work environment. The provision for different work modes helps you deliver professional results with high technical accuracy. For media consumption, BenQ PD2700U is HDR10 compatible, so your video content will always be of superior quality.
This 4k monitor is ideal for darkroom usage because of the high contrast feature. Its blue light filter and flicker-free features ensure the safety of your eyes despite its brightness and sharpness. As a professional visual content creator, you definitely should give this monitor a chance to enhance the beauty of your work.
Like the BenQ PD2700U, HP U28 was also designed for creative professionals to optimize their creativity. It features a true-to-life color and visual experience with enhanced contrast. Whether you’re working on illustrations, video content creation, or web designs, this monitor is a dream come true that brings your imagination to life.
There is an amazing monitor stand that is flexible and supportive of your workflow. You can adjust the height and position, as well as your posture as much as you want without missing out on any important detail. Not only can you adjust the monitor itself, but the provided color calibration allows you to adjust between color spaces which boosts your creative freedom. The connectivity features also allows you to maintain a tidy work desk so clutter is not permitted to mess with the flow of creative juices.
It is suitable for casual gaming despite being made for creative work. You would need to scale down to 1080p, which this monitor does perfectly. Response time can be adjusted as it is set on the slowest option (presumably to the 4 ms).
If you’re environmentally conscious, HP U28 is a sustainable product made of recycled ocean bound plastic. So you can be at peace knowing that you’re keeping your environment safe when you get this monitor.
The downside here is that it might not connect easily with a MacBook, you might need a dedicated cable for better results. For other PCs, the connectivity should be pretty much plug and play.
The LG 27UD68-P was designed for mixed usage. It has ultra high resolution that provides a burst of color suitable for professional creatives, gamers, and office work. This monitor is ahead in quality, viewing angles, overall color, and brightness. The lag is minimal for great performance during gaming sessions. It is also perfect for photo and video editing.
It has a plastic and sturdy stand that gives it balance but only tilts a little up and down. So, the height might not favor every user. The monitor favors multitasking with the resizing features that lets you display multiple screens at once. For the price, nothing comes close and frankly, it beats out its competition with its capabilities. This monitor works great with a MacBook pro. Colors are pretty accurate, just make sure it’s set to sRGB in the settings for accuracy.
Thanks to the 8.3 million pixels on the high resolution screen, gamers on this monitor are entitled to an intense gaming experience. It takes care of tearing and stuttering that result from differences between a graphic card’s frame rate and a monitor’s refresh rate. This is one of the best 4K monitors for video games. If you’re a hardcore gamer, I’d give this model some serious consideration.
The bottom line is: If you have been looking for a quality IPS 4K monitor with accurate color, impressive brightness, thin bezels, and all at an affordable price, you’ve found the answer.
Mmmm, ultrawide goodness. Honestly once you try an ultrawide monitor, you will struggle to go back to a normal widescreen. It’s kinda like going from 1080p to 4K — once you see the difference, you’ll be hooked.
The LG 34WN80C-B is an ultrawide, 4K monitor that is primarily aimed at professionals who do things like game design, graphic design, and photo editing. This monitor is also curved, so you really get enveloped on what you’re working on.
It’s no slouch in the other departments either. It’s great for media watching, and it has a very responsive panel so you don’t have to worry too much about ghosting/blurring when you’re playing fast-paced games. If you have an Nvidia graphics card, you can even get the refresh rate up to 75hz, which is fantastic for this price point.
If you want something that’s more for professional use, but still has decent chops for gaming, put the The LG 34WN80C-B on your list!
The Dell Ultrasharp U2720Q monitor is designed more for office work than gaming, and for the price, it is a solid option. The monitor has thin bezels which gives it unparalleled aesthetic features. It is easily adjustable so you’re not craning your neck and looking down at your laptop while working, and it’s pretty easy on the eyes so you don’t have to spend all your eight or more work hours staring at something unappealing.
The image production function is amazing. The colors look great out of the box, but would definitely require calibration if you want to seriously use it for design. It covers over 99% of sRGB and over 97% of DCI-P3. The display is stunningly bright and can be used for any type of work. So, if you plan on using this for creative work or just want a really good looking display, this monitor is great!
This Dell monitor is serviceable and it’s a good monitor for viewing HDR content and playing games in HDR, but I definitely wouldn’t recommend doing design work in HDR on this monitor. The monitor can automatically switch when it detects HDR content, so let it do that, but you should keep the default in the simple wide color mode. It still is a great looking monitor, but those who get really distracted by small defects might get annoyed too quickly.
If you’re a Windows User, note this: If you plug in through the HDMI port you might need to go into your settings and enable full color range (limited color range sometimes is the default for HDMI connections), and to get 30bit color, you would need to enable that manually as well, through the NVIDIA Control panel.
For emphasis, this monitor has good balanced colors, works great for programming and design, and looks sleek with the fairly small bezels.
This Acer predator model is a 27-inch G-SYNC Compatible monitor that takes gameplay to the next level of smoothness. Here is everything you stand to gain from this monitor: seamless tear-free gaming, zero motion blur, impressive refresh rate, zero shadows, nanosized dots for color enhancement and life-like realism, and color accuracy down to the finest detail. You’ll be in front of this monitor and feel like the games have had a new life breathed into them. The monitor features nice accessibility options (blue light, light sensor etc.) , a decent pivot and flexible movement abilities. You can tilt, swivel, and direct the monitor wherever you wish. It has crisp and beautiful picture quality, and a hard to notice screen door effect at normal viewing distances.
The monitor comes with plenty of connectors (both displayport and HDMI) which can be found under a removable panel on the back of the monitor. With a single display port cable, it’ll run at 120 hz with HDR and G-Sync enabled. With a second displayport cable, you can get it up to 144hz without G-Sync. The HDR 400 is just enough to be noticeable and make an impact on games that support HDR. Everything about this monitor is simply amazing. The specs are just right (it checks the box for high refresh rate very easily), the menu is easy to work with and it has led lights at the bottom of the monitor for added extra lighting. The monitor’s visual range is stunning without any direct modifications. At default, the color depth is outstanding without any oversaturation (you can change this to be more or less saturated in the settings if you like).
If you are looking for a good quality 4k monitor and still want the capability of gaming at 4k with high end specs, do not hesitate to spend the money on this monitor. You won’t regret it. You get what you pay for, and then some, with this monitor.
Asides from gaming, this monitor can be used in a business office without being too distracting, particularly for a setup style where you want concentrated monitors.
This monitor is meant for a Nvidia consumer setup due to GSync. Those who want the AMD equivalent experience might have to get a series that uses Freesync. Without an Nvidia card, almost all the functions will work, but you may not be able to use the anti-tearing and synchronization as effectively.
For not much more money than the U2790VQ above, the HP Business Z27 offers the added connectivity of a USB-C, so you could plug everything into it outside of a toaster. For the price, the color accuracy is also first rate, and it’s stand is incredibly adjustable for good ergonomics.
With the word ‘business’ in its name, its design is very clean and minimal, and is really made to not look out of place in an office, rather than shouting “4K LOOK AT ME!.” Despite its subdued looks, it does like very stylish, and it has slim bezels on the sides if you want to have multiple monitors.
It offers different display modes, like Low Blue Light and Night, which are great to reduce eye strain during long and late night sessions. One thing of note though, is that it doesn’t come with inbuilt speakers, so that might be something you want to consider.
If you’re a hardcore gamer or need absolutely perfect color reproduction, look elsewhere. But if you’re looking for a very good looking, capable 4k monitor that doesn’t cost the earth, the HP Business Z27 should absolutely be on your shopping list.
Well if all of the 4K monitors previously listed to this one can be described as minimalist, the Acer Predator XB271HK screams ‘GAMER, COMING THROUGH!” While it only has a reasonably modest 60hz refresh rate, it has an otherwise very responsive panel for some pretty solid 4K gaming chops in this price range.
It’s design and construction are all very well done, and right out of the box the colors are accurate and true. When it came out a few years ago, it retailed for well over $900, but these days you can pick one up for a little over $500, so we like the gaming value here.
It’s extremely adjustable ergonomics-wise, and can even be tilted 90 degrees. We must say though for a 4k monitor in this price bracket, it’s disappointing there is no USB-C. And of course the styling… well that’s not for everyone, but we like it.
Bottom line, if you’re looking for a 4k gaming monitor (that also does everything else very well) for around $500, check this one out.
The Acer Predator x34 is a wonderful and reliable monitor for both gaming and productivity tasks. It is relatively bright but also suitable for lower light environments. It is great for media consumption so movies and other visual content will look amazing on it. The ergonomics, screen real estate, and realistic image quality are top notch. There is no flimsiness in the hardware so it is very sturdy and ready for use.
For gaming: Input lag is significantly reduced, the stand and ergonomics is impressive. There is no noticeable screen tearing and it’s very responsive. It has crazy high quality and it tremendously enhances gaming graphics.
The only downside to this monitor is the slight backslide bleed on its screen. It is only HDR 400 so your chances of enjoying HDR content will depend on personal preferences. Gsync and FreeSync work on it flawlessly. It was designed to ensure that there are no artifacts or ghosting in any fast past games. Apart from the bleed, it is pretty much ready to serve for creative works and other visual-inclined activities.
The color vibrance is absolutely stunning. The monitor comes with a calibration already set from the factory to make sure it’s ready to use when you receive it. It’s ready to plop down on your desk right out of the box, so you don’t have to worry about part assembly. It even comes with cables. You’ll be getting a smooth and enjoyable user experience from the ease of setup alone.
While the Dell Ultrasharp U2718Q is not exactly a dedicated gaming monitor, it actually provides a very good gaming experience in this price range. That’s because of its low input lag, which basically means if you move the joystick on your game’s controller, the monitor will respond much faster to your input. This is great for faster paced gaming, and a real treat for this price point.
It does everything else quite well too, with a reasonable color gamut suitable for photo editing, wide viewing angles, and a good contrast ratio.
excellent ergonomic options are also abundant — you can even tilt it 90 degrees to be in portrait orientation, which is great for productivity work where you don’t want to have to dart your eyes back and forth over widescreen.
There aren’t many 4K monitors in this price bracket with HDR, but the Dell Ultrasharp U2718Q is one of them. While this usually means extremely vibrant colors that jump out at you to grab your attention, we have to admit the HDR effect isn’t that strong on this particular monitor.
All in all though, the Dell Ultrasharp U2718Q is an excellent choice if you lean towards the gaming side of things, and what to keep your monitor budget under control.
This Acer gaming monitor features a curved monitor display that gives you a marvelous view from all angles. With this, you can take your productivity to a new level and enjoy gaming on the side at a level way above the “acceptable” bar. It also offers protection to your eyes and neck with the blue lightning protection feature, and the provided flexible sideways and height tilt.
On that note, the stand is solid metal, really heavy duty material, and the mechanism for adjustment (sleek and smooth) is quite an impressive engineering achievement. The 21:9 ratio makes it exceptional for editing, general productivity and gaming. After calibration, the picture quality is extraordinary too with rich colors, excellent contrast and sharpness, very little light bleed, and no flickering. This helps avoid getting headaches after long work or gaming sessions.
The size and aspect ratio are a dream come true, especially for product developers. With the Acer screen-splitting software, you can have CAD taking up 2/3rds of the screen and use the remainder for viewing any kind of document, spreadsheet, or even scroll through your email. No scaling is required in any applications and all text is easy to read and the focus is very sharp. It’s a really big productivity booster.
One note to gamers; because of the screen size and ratio on this monitor, some newer games will not scale for the wide screen, so you might either have black borders on the side, or the game will be stretched wrong. So, only games that can take advantage of the larger aspect ratio will look amazing.
Get this monitor if you do plenty of work that involves coding, design, and/or requires multiple windows running at a time.
Designed for mixed usage, the Dell U3219Q, does pretty well whether you are in the office, gaming, or consuming multimedia. Being an IPS panel, it has low input lag, so the monitor will keep pace with your gaming fingers with little worry. It also means good viewing angles, so there is no trouble if you’re showing a colleague what you’re working on.
Typical of a good professional monitor, it does have very good ergonomic adjustments, and it also offers very good color accuracy. It’s a shame then that the HDR isn’t that noteworthy, and it doesn’t really excel at any one discipline.
But that’s par for the course for an all rounder 4k monitor, you can’t get everything you want, just what you need. What it does do though is offer solid specs across the board, and in that nice and large 32 inch form factor.
The Dell U3219Q might not be a rockstar in any one department, but it will serve you well for pretty much whatever you’re doing with it.
The Asus ProArt monitor is an excellent work monitor with superior factory calibration, enhanced screen uniformity, a four-way ergonomic stand, and flexible full range adjustment features on height, tilt and angle. The stand is well constructed and this flexibility makes it suitable for any user at any sitting height.
The colors are vibrant (100% sRGB, 100% AdobeRGB), the screen is super bright and it has high synchronization with design and office applications like chrome, Office, Photoshop, and Inkscape.
As part of your workstation for graphic design, photography, color grading, and video creation, you will love and enjoy this monitor. It is excellent for content creation, media consumption and high productivity. One thing to note for video editors is the speaker which is a little weak. For improved clarity and better results during sound editing, you would need to attach an external sound enhancer.
The USB-C connection means you can connect to different PC brands (HP, Dell, Samsung, etc.) and it also charges the device while displaying content.
If you are planning to use the monitor for gaming, this is not the display for you. With its refresh rate, you will see blurring during high-speed movement, video colors may transition too quickly thus creating a run-on of color patterns, and the processing speed lags a bit because of the high color vibrancy of the monitor. Any professional hardcore gamer would agree that this wouldn’t fit in for highly competitive games and might end up as a big disappointment.
Ultimately, the monitor is so easy to set up, has a high quality display and gives value for the price.
If you play a lot of competitive online games, then you can 100% confirm that frames matter and this Acer monitor has the best frames you could wish for with a 4ms response time and a refresh rate overclocking to 144 Hz. After getting this monitor, your gaming success has better chances of reaching a whole new level. On top of all this, the picture quality is outstanding. Just WOW. The colors and Nvidia GSync make the games pop out and appear more beautiful than you’ve ever seen them.
The monitor’s shielding hood lessens distractions during concentrated game play and provides a more accurate representation of colors. The ergonomic design on the stand gives you the freedom to swivel, pivot and adjust height for maximum adaptability and comfort.
To provide enhanced color vibrancy, DisplayHDR 400 ensures better contrast and color accuracy so you can experience higher peak-brightness, better color accuracy and higher color saturation.
The Acer Predator XB273K has features that both improve your viewing experience and help reduce eye strain during long gaming sessions. The flicker-free display has a blue light filter and a glare reduction feature (Acer VisionCare) that significantly improves viewing comfort and enhances eye protection. With this monitor, you can be on the screen for as long as you want, and remain comfortable.
If you’re looking to game at 4K with a high refresh rate and a decent enough HDR color added with good response time, then this is the monitor for you.
If you have a MacBook, look no further because the PD3220U was designed by BenQ just for you. Now normally if you’re a designer of some sort using a Mac, you’d look at Apple Pro Display and drool. Then you’d see the $5,000 price tag, and nope out of the store immediately. The PD3220U provides a very good, and much less expensive alternative.
Even looking at it, you can see the design was inspired by Apple, so even aesthetics snobs will put this monitor pride of place on their work station. I should note that it also works well with PCs, despite its orientation towards the Apple ecosystem.
For media consumption, it’s very good, and it’s okay for casual gaming — if you’re a hardcore gamer, I’d look elsewhere if were you.
If you’re a professional designer that loves Apple, but not their prices, this BenQ is for you.
At first glance, the LG 34BK95U-W looks reasonably unassuming, but it has a trick up its sleeve that will satisfy even the fussiest of pixel-peepers — this bad boy boasts a stunning 5K resolution!
Now it’s not actually quite accurate to call it a genuine 5K display, because even though it has 5,120 lines of pixel on the horizontal axis, it only has 2,160 lines on the vertical axis, which is the same as a 4k monitor.
So think of it as perhaps a 4.5K monitor — not 5K, but still a heck of a lot better than 4K!
If you’re still following along, the LG 34BK95U-W features LG’s patented Nano IPS technology, which essentially means greater intensity in its colors, and enhanced HDR support.
It’s very bright, but it also has an ambient light sensor to adjust brightness and color temperature to protect your peepers. If you’re a Mac owner, this LG should be right up your alley, as they’ll work seamlessly together.
I really like this monitor, it has huge real estate, and works well for gaming too. If you want the most pixels on the block, and still have low latency for gaming, look into this one.
The LG 32UL950-W is another monitor targeted at creative professionals particularly Mac users, but PC users will feel just as at home. The difference between this and the BenQ, is that this monitor is also very good for gaming. Off to a good start then!
For the office, it has a Thunderbolt 3 connection, so you can plug in your MacBook, daisy-multiple monitors, and charge your Macbook all the same time. Pretty darned convenient, especially if you like to swap between your laptop monitor and a big 4K monitor. It also has coverage of the wider Adobe RGB color space, which is designer lingo for ‘very good color representation.’
For gaming, the LG 32UL950-W has low input lag, and of course glorious 4K real estate. Be warned though, it’s probably not ideal for gaming in dark rooms, because of the low contrast.
For media consumption it has LG’s fantastic Nano IPS technology, so that HDR will scream bright and loud at your eyeballs.
Otherwise, it’s a lovely monitor in the pro-sumer category, and should give you long and capable service either in the office or in the depths of an online gaming battle.
There you have it, 18 of the best 4K monitors at just about every price point imaginable. Not an easy task, but hopefully you’re now armed with more than enough information to purchase the 4K monitor of your dreams, that won’t break the bank.
If you pushed us to recommend our favourite 4K monitor though, we’d back our Editor’s choice, which is the LG 4K UHD 27UD88-W. It does all of the basics very well, and it’s at a very competitive price point.
Did you agree with our picks? Let us know what you think in the comments!
Disclosure: The product recommendations are not sponsored and are chosen by our editorial staff. We may earn an affiliate commission when you purchase an item through our links.
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