Meet the 31MU97Z, LG’s Thunderbolt 2, 10-bt color equipped 4K monitor

by on May 5, 2015

Stephan Jukic – May 5, 2015

4K PC monitors that can plug into thunderbolt ports are not exactly a common thing to encounter on the market and because of this, LG seems to have come up with a very robust solution.

This was done in the form of the new monitor the company introduced to audiences at the NAB show last month in Las Vegas. We’re talking, of course, about the 31 inch 31MU97Z from LG, and it’s claimed to be the first ever 4K monitor with Thunderbolt 2 ports built into it.

The 31MU97Z offers a 31 inch screen which shows images at a very nice “Cinema Grade” 4K resolution of 4096 x 2160 pixels and offers its users the ability to plug the monitor into a computer’s Thunderbolt port without having to go through the slight hassle of an HDMI 2.0 or DisplayPort adapter. So far however, LG is being a bit mute about pricing and shipping details for their new product.

As for the Thunderbolt connection, it would definitely be useful for a number of people. Many Apple Macs have this kind of connection and though LG hasn’t clarified if the 31MU97Z would be compatible with Apple machines, we can guess that it’s likely since previous LG monitors with Thunderbolt do indeed have Mac compatibility. Furthermore, there are a few other Windows PCs and monitors with Thunderbolt built into them.

Considering how some Mac users have lamented a deficiency of Thunderbolt-compatible 4K monitors, LGs latest offering could indeed be useful for them if it is actually compatible with Mac. This could apply particularly to owners of the Mac Pro desktop, popular with graphic design and video editing people.


The 31MU97Z comes with two Thunderbolt 2 ports, supports powerful 10-bit color depth (as opposed to the much more limited 8-bits) and also includes two fairly decent internal 5-watt MaxxAudio speakers. The 31MU97Z also supports Adobe RGB at over 99.5% on its IPS display and can even offer screen splitting via “Dual Color Space” for the sake of viewing a particular graphic in both sRGB and Adobe RGB at the same time for comparison.

What makes Thunderbolt 2 such a powerful feature is that it has the ability to transport data loads at a massive 20Gbps (Gigabits per second). This is twice as fast as the upcoming USB 3.1 standard and even better than HDMI 2.0 or DisplayPort 1.2. Unfortunately however, peripheral storage and multimedia devices that fit with Thunderbolt are still largely unavailable.

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