Does Xbox Support Ultrawide Monitors: Does Xbox Series X|S support 21:9 aspect ratio?

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Does Xbox support Ultrawide, 21:9 aspect ratio monitors? These have been around for years in PC Gaming, lending players a wider field of vision, among other things. This tends to lend those players some significant advantages against players who have a smaller monitor.

With this generation, Microsoft has brought many of the best features of PC gaming - SSD, ray tracing and the like, to Xbox. The availability of Xbox Game Pass on PC as well as console, has brought these two gaming platforms closer together than ever before. But has that translated into support for Ultrawide monitors?

Does Xbox support Ultrawide monitors?

Usually, an Ultrawide monitor will operate at 1440p resolution, and an aspect ratio of 21:9. 1440p is often described as Quad HD, because it has 4 times the resolution of a standard 720p display. In terms of resolution, it sits between 1080p and 4K UHD. 1440p offers 2560 x 1440 pixels. 4K by comparison, is 3840 x 2160 pixels.

Unlike the PlayStation 5, the Xbox Series X|S does support 1440p resolution. Microsoft does emphasise that in order to utilise this resolution, you must have a monitor that also supports 1440p. So that's an encouraging sign. But does it enable you to use an Ultrawide monitor?

Image of Xbox Series X and Series S consoles, on grey background ; Does Xbox support Ultrawide
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Does Xbox support 21:9 aspect ratio?

While Microsoft do support 1440p, they do emphasise that it will provide the user with a 16:9 HD viewing area. This, obviously, is not the same as a 21:9 aspect ratio. If you do have an Ultrawide monitor, you can still plug in your console and play your Xbox games on it. But what you will see will be delivered in a 16:9 aspect ratio, and you'll get black bars on either side of the picture. Alternatively, the image may get stretched to fill the available screen, but everything will look, well, a bit wrong.

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the primary reason for this is that when the console was designed, it was expected to be used predominantly on 4k televisions, which are normally designed to display at a 16:9 aspect ratio. The percentage of players who would be suing a 21:9 ratio was likely not considered large enough to justify adding this to the console.

Whether this is something Microsoft may consider adding at later date via a software update, we just don't know. But for now, you'll just have to accept 16:9 is as good as it gets.

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