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The Best Privacy Screens for Computers (Laptop & Desktop Monitors)

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The Best Privacy Screens for Computers (Laptop & Desktop Monitors)

Key Points

  • Our choice for the #1 Best Overall privacy screen is the SightPro Computer Privacy Screen.
  • Whether in a professional or academic setting, computer privacy screens can be widely beneficial or even essential purchases.
  • Privacy screens help protect your sensitive data from people nearby and camera surveillance, as well as reduce glare or improve clarity.
  • You can find privacy screens to suit any size of monitor or laptop display, and with touchscreen compatibility if required.

Protecting our personal and sensitive data is a hot topic, more than ever before. You may be concerned with guarding your PC against cyberattacks, shielding your workplace’s confidential information from those with malicious intent, or even keeping your physical location private. In any case, there are many good reasons to want to keep your data safe, especially in a professional setting. A significant data breach, whatever the cause, can spell serious consequences for your career or, in the best case, a major hassle. Fortunately, there’s some nifty tech available to help mitigate these dangers – computer privacy screens.

These easy-to-install screens use minuscule vertical blinds to block light from certain angles. This helps to keep your computer’s display and any sensitive information on it secure from anyone who shouldn’t have access. In this article, we’re going to reveal our top picks for the best computer privacy screens, so you can have peace of mind about your data. Take a look at the top-ranked products below:

Best Overall: SightPro 24 Inch Computer Privacy Screen Filter

Best Overall
SightPro 24 Inch Computer Privacy Screen Filter
$49.99
  • Can be used with flat or raised screens
  • Anti-glare, anti-blue light
  • Secure fit
  • Cleaning cloth included
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
02/28/2024 12:56 pm GMT

It may seem odd to be excited about privacy screens, but the SightPro 24 Inch Computer Privacy Screen Filter delivers where it counts. Nothing has been skimped on here, as pretty much every feature you could desire has been included. There are multiple sizes available, so you’re sure to find one that suits your display. These filters are also designed to work with either curved or flat screens, so rest assured that the fit will be just right. While installation can be a little complicated due to the mounting tabs and adhesive strips required, this does provide a more secure fit than some other alternatives. Anti-glare, UV, and blue light technology come as standard, which is very useful when using your computer for extended periods. Overall, the SightPro filter comes out on top due to its reliability and versatility. The microfiber cleaning cloth that comes with it is always appreciated, too.

ProsCons
Can be used with raised or flat screensInstallation can be a little complicated
Cleaning cloth included
Anti-glare, UV, and blue light

Check out the SightPro 24 Inch Computer Privacy Screen Filter on Amazon.

Best Widescreen: VINTEZ 24 Inch Computer Privacy Screen Filter

Best Widescreen
VINTEZ 24 Inch Computer Privacy Screen Filter
$49.99
  • Blocks out huge amounts of blue and UV light
  • Adjustable viewing angle
  • Touchscreen-compatible
  • Ideal for widescreens
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
02/28/2024 01:02 pm GMT

The VINTEZ 24 Inch Computer Privacy Screen Filter is both wonderfully wide and beautifully thin, almost as if it’s a regular filter that’s been flattened and stretched out. A huge amount of light is blocked as well – over 90% of UV light and over 60% of blue light. This is definitely a bonus, especially since you’re exposed to more light when viewing a bigger display. It’s a nice touch that the viewing angle is restricted even more than on standard screens. Instead of a 60-degree angle, you’re getting a 30-degree angle with VINTEZ. What’s more, the filter is compatible with touchscreens, so this is a truly versatile screen. All in all, the VINTEZ privacy screen is one of the smartest options for a widescreen display.

ProsCons
Blocks out most UV and blue lightYou may have to experiment with mounting options to find a good fit
Adjustable viewing angle
Compatible with touchscreens

Take a look at the VINTEZ 24 Inch Computer Privacy Screen Filter on Amazon.

Best for Frameless Screens: Amazon Basics Privacy Screen Filter

Best for Frameless
Amazon Basics Privacy Screen Filter
$43.30
  • Affordable privacy screen
  • Reversible finish
  • Bezel tabs and adhesive strips included
  • Anti-glare
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
02/28/2024 01:02 pm GMT

The name of the Amazon Basics Privacy Screen Filter may not sound like much, but there’s a lot to love here. The standard 60-degree viewing angle restriction and anti-glare are included, but the screen itself is also reversible. While the glossy finish gives you some extra clarity, the matte side tones down glare and reflections to a higher level. You also get two installation options – the bezel tabs provide a secure fit where the screen can be removed when not needed, and the adhesive strips give a stronger hold. The strips are ideal for displays without bezels, where the glass reaches the edge. This screen is designed to fit a 21.5-inch widescreen monitor, so make sure you know your screen size before purchasing.

All in all, this is a great affordable model that does what it says on the tin. The sticking power may leave something to be desired, depending on your monitor, but for the price, we can’t count this privacy screen out of the contest.

ProsCons
Two different options for mountingNot suitable for all screen sizes
Reversible finishNot as adhesive as other options
Great choice for frameless displays

Check out the Amazon Basics Privacy Screen Filter on Amazon.

Best for Macs: Kensington MagPro 24″ Monitor Privacy Screen

Best for Macs
Kensington MagPro 24" (16:10) Monitor Privacy Screen
$111.61
  • Ideal privacy screen for Macs
  • Easy installation and removal with magnetic strips
  • Allows laptop to close comfortably
  • 30-degree viewing angle
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
02/27/2024 03:13 pm GMT

If you’ve got a Mac then the Kensington MagPro 24″ Monitor Privacy Screen is a no-brainer. This screen is available in sizes from 21.5 inches up to 27 inches and can be attached and removed easily. While blue light isn’t reduced as much as in some other models (up to 22%), the viewing angle is restricted to 30 degrees, which is a big improvement over the standard 60. The reversible finish is fairly common with privacy filters, but it is never an unwanted addition. If reducing glare is your priority, using a matte finish will work wonders. The cleaning cloth is a nice touch, as it’s often a forgotten but necessary add-on, as is the protective sleeve for storage.

For a Mac-compatible privacy screen, the MagPro does exactly what you need it to. Extra points are given for easy removal and viewing angle restriction. This is something that’s surprisingly hard to find with a Mac filter, so it’s definitely something to consider.

ProsCons
30-degree viewing angleThe sides aren’t magnetized, so the screen may protrude slightly
Includes protective sleeve and cleaning cloth
Ideal for many Mac sizes
Simple to attach and remove with magnetic strips

Take a look at the Kensington MagPro 24″ Monitor Privacy Screen on Amazon.

Best for Versatility: 3M Privacy Filter for 24″ Widescreen Monitor

Best for Versatility
3M Privacy Filter for 24" Widescreen Monitor
$76.00
  • Reversible finish
  • Touchscreen-compatible
  • Various styles for clarity or privacy
  • Framed and unframed models
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
02/28/2024 01:07 pm GMT

Another great choice for a computer privacy screen is the 3M Privacy Filter for 24″ Widescreen Monitor. These screens are consistently held in high regard by their users. 3M produces screens for all kinds of devices, from mobiles and tablets to laptops and desktop PCs. Privacy screens can be framed or unframed and come in three different variants. These deliver a 60-degree restriction on viewing (Black Privacy), touch screen functionality and clear visuals (High Clarity Privacy), or a visual-enhancing and blue light-reducing metallic finish (Gold Privacy). What’s more, these filters are reversible, giving you a matte finish for more glare resistance, and they’re touchscreen-compatible. If you want a little more customization with your privacy screen and have a lot of different devices to cover, 3M is a good bet.

ProsCons
Three styles are available to suit your preferencesHard to remove once in place
Reversible filter
Compatible with touchscreens

Check out the 3M Privacy Filter for 24″ Widescreen Monitor on Amazon.

How to Pick the Best Privacy Screens for Computers: Step-by-Step

There are lots of features commonly found on privacy screens, but they’re not all created equal. When looking to buy a new privacy screen for your computer, it’s important to consider the following factors:

  • Size
  • Viewing angle
  • Price
  • Functionality
  • Installation

Let’s take a look at each of these in turn.

Size

While you can find privacy screens that can be trimmed to your desired size, most screens don’t have this option. You could potentially try to cut the screen anyway, but it may not fit properly on your display afterwards. Fortunately, screens are available in all kinds of sizes, so you should be able to find the one you need. Concerning the models in our list, they’re mostly suitable for 24-inch screens, but other sizes are available for each brand.

Viewing angle

This is a big factor to think about since one of the major purposes of a privacy screen is to stop prying eyes over your shoulder from looking at your sensitive information. Usually, the viewing angle is restricted to 60 degrees for most privacy screens. However, some models offer an even more restricted angle, typically 30 degrees. The MagPro from Kensington has this reduced viewing angle, as does the privacy screen from VINTEZ. If a 30-degree angle is highly desirable for you, then one of these brands is a great choice, depending on whether you’re using a Windows PC or a Mac.

Price

Buying the essential gizmos and gadgets for your university course or a new job can quickly add up to a small fortune. Therefore, it’s understandable that you’ll want to save the pennies where you can. When it comes to tight budgets, the privacy screen from Amazon Basics pulls ahead. It’s significantly more affordable than some other options. However, the functionality is quite basic, as is its ability to stick securely to your screen. The 3M and MagPro screens are on the other end of the price spectrum but do give more customization options as well as a better fit. All in all, how important the price is to you will depend on your situation. Most screens can work fairly well in a pinch.

Functionality

In an age where touchscreens aren’t just limited to mobile devices anymore, the functionality of your new privacy screen is worth thinking about. If you rely on the touchscreen of your monitor frequently, then a screen with this compatibility (i.e., the 3M or VINTEZ screen) may seal the deal for you. In addition, some screens have a reversible finish, so you can alternate between anti-glare and maximum clarity. If you have specific needs for your privacy screen, it may be worth checking out their functionality and splashing out a little extra cash.

Installation

Most of the time, installing a privacy screen is a simple affair. Usually, they come with either adhesive strips or bezel clips, or potentially both. Popping the screen into position can be easy, but making sure it stays there is another matter. Likewise, if you want to remove your screen at any point, this can be a little tricky. The SightPro screen offers one of the most secure fits out of this list, and the MagPro screen is particularly easy to install and remove whenever you wish. It’d be smart to consider one of these options if you don’t plan to use your privacy screen all the time.

What to Know Before Buying a Privacy Screen for Your Computer

It could be tempting to splurge on a privacy screen with all the bells and whistles. But it may not be necessary. While it can be nice to have a screen with a 30-degree viewing angle, touchscreen compatibility, and a reversible finish, you may be fine with a simpler option. Most privacy screens come with a 60-degree viewing angle, which offers sufficient discretion in most cases. And if screen glare isn’t too much of an issue for you, then an anti-glare finish might not be essential to have.

Overall, having a screen that allows you to see your display comfortably and fits securely onto your monitor is the most important thing. To this end, be sure that the screen size and aspect ratio are correct for your computer before buying. It’s worth noting that most screen finishes do reduce the clarity of your display somewhat if they’re not designed for high clarity. However, this shouldn’t be an issue for most users.

Using a Privacy Screen for Your Computer: What It’s Like

If you’re using a privacy screen for the first time, it can take a little getting used to. Your screen may appear a little dimmer than normal, especially if you’re using a matte finish. But since most monitors are a lot brighter than they used to be, this shouldn’t be a problem for the average user. Privacy screens tend to have an anti-glare coating as well. As such, the contents of your monitor may actually appear clearer than normal. Having a screen that doesn’t fit properly on your display can be a headache. But one that’s correctly installed is a breeze to use. Overall, a good-quality privacy screen is a worthwhile investment. One of the biggest differences you may notice is a lack of people peering over your shoulder.

Summary Table

Privacy ScreenProsCons
SightPro Computer Privacy ScreenCan be used with raised or flat screens, Cleaning cloth included, Anti-glare, UV, and blue lightInstallation can be a little complicated
VINTEZ Computer Privacy ScreenBlocks out most UV and blue light, Adjustable viewing angle, Compatible with touchscreensYou may have to experiment with mounting options to find a good fit
Amazon Basics Privacy ScreenTwo different options for mounting, Reversible finish, Great choice for frameless displaysNot suitable for all screen sizes, Not as adhesive as other options
Kensington MagPro Monitor Privacy Screen30-degree viewing angle, Includes protective sleeve and cleaning cloth, Ideal for many MacBook sizes, allows for easy closing, Simple to attach and remove with magnetic stripsThe sides aren’t magnetized, so screen may protrude slightly
3M Privacy FilterThree styles are available to suit your preferences, Reversible filter, Compatible with touchscreensHard to remove once in place

Frequently Asked Questions

What are computer privacy screens used for?

The main purpose of a privacy screen is to reduce the viewing angle of your monitor so that it’s harder for other people to look over your shoulder and see your screen. This helps to prevent “visual hacking”, where people can retrieve sensitive data without you knowing, particularly in professional settings, but also anywhere in public. Aside from this, privacy screens often have anti-glare and anti-blue light coatings, to reduce eyestrain and let you use your computer for extended periods.

How do privacy screens work?

Privacy screens use something called micro-louver technology. This involves extremely small vertical blinds being embedded in the screen material, which allow light to pass through at only specific angles. When the screen is viewed directly from the front, light from the display can be seen, but only a darkened or distorted image is seen outside of the viewing angle.

What are the best privacy screens for computers?

There are many great options for privacy screens, but going with a reputable company is a good bet, as well as one with positive reviews. Brands like VINTEZ, 3M, SightPro, and Kensington are smart choices, but there are others too, such as Targus.

Can privacy screens be used for laptops?

Yes, privacy screens are available for both computer monitors and laptops, often from the same company. Be sure to check the size of the privacy screen, and what kind of device it’s intended for.

Do privacy screens reduce display clarity?

Some privacy screens have high-clarity options available, but generally, these screens can lead to a darker or blurrier image. This may not be an issue for the average user, but if you struggle to see what’s on your display normally, then opting for a screen with extra clarity is a good idea.

Are privacy screens touchscreen-compatible?

Many privacy screens are touchscreen-compatible, but not all. It’s sensible to check the functionality of a screen before buying.

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