- Portable monitors have become a credible option for many consumers, offering features like high resolution and color depth.
- Portable monitors expand the capabilities of smartphones, allowing users to watch media on 4K panels.
- Portable monitors are perfect for portable PCs, allowing users to set up anywhere with a power source.
- Portable monitors increase productivity by providing an extra display for laptops or desktops.
- Portable monitors are great for video conferencing, providing a larger display for easier communication.
Portable monitors were considered somewhat gimmicky when they first hit the scene, but they have slowly become a credible option for many. If you’re looking for reasons to buy a portable monitor but you have been on the fence, you’ve come to the right place.
What Is a Portable Monitor?
As the name implies, a portable monitor is a display people can take on the go. Think of it like an oversized tablet without an operating system. These devices have been around for years but didn’t really gain ground with consumers until the mobile revolution.
While still considered a niche product by most, a portable monitor differs from comparable devices like smart displays. There’s more focus on areas like resolution, color depth, and latency. These portable displays open the doors to new possibilities for users, which brings us to the best reasons to buy a portable monitor today.
Reasons to Buy a Portable Monitor
A portable monitor is any “display” you can tote around and hook up to another device. The term doesn’t refer to old-school monitors with handles, but a new class designed for consumers that have portability in mind.
These portable displays have come a long way in recent years, so there are more options to choose from and a variety of price points. That’s a plus, but here are the best reasons to buy a portable monitor today.
They Expand Your Mobile Experiences
Portable monitors work with a variety of devices, but one of the best reasons to buy a portable monitor is to expand the capabilities of a smartphone. Are you tired of viewing content on a small display, even if it is full HD? The best portable monitors allow you to watch media on 4K panels anywhere you roam.
Most portable monitors are FHD, with a resolution of 1,920 x 1,080, but there are also several highly-rated models at 3,840 x 2,160. Regardless of the resolution, these panels dwarf a smartphone screen and most tablets.
Portable monitors range from 10 inches to well over 20 inches in size, depending on the style. With that in mind, we found most people prefer screens in the 13 to 16-inch range. That’s the perfect size for portability and keeps things affordable which is another reason to buy a portable monitor today.
They’re Perfect for Portable PCs
Since smartphones arrived, we’ve often heard them referred to as pocket PCs. It’s fitting given the processing power found on premium handsets from Samsung and Apple, but they can’t stack up against a mini PC with a 12th Gen Intel chip. The best way to show off any portable PC is with a matching portable monitor.
Minis have a fun form factor many consumers are unaware of, and they’re devices techies love to show off. These pint-sized systems can run Windows 11 with Intel or AMD chips backed by 8GB of RAM or more. They don’t come with a display, although their ports are perfect for portable monitors. If you have a mini desktop PC, a portable monitor will allow you to set up anywhere with a power source.
They Increase Productivity
If you’ve dreamed of having a dual-monitor setup but don’t have the space or budget, you’ll love portable monitors. These panels are easy to hook up and put away when not in use, allowing users to increase productivity in various ways.
Larger screens are known to increase productivity. A portable monitor lets anyone add an extra 15-inch display to any laptop or desktop, instantly boosting your efficiency. The same goes for mobile users who work from tablets or devices like the Surface Pro.
They’re Great for Video Conferencing
A portable display is a fantastic choice, whether you use video chat to catch up with friends and family or for work. Webcams have allowed people to communicate from PCs for decades before smartphones and tablets came along to shake things up.
Conference calls and chats with groups of friends are challenging from a six-inch smartphone or tablets like the Fire HD. When you sync up to a display twice that size, it makes life much easier. It also frees up your main display for other tasks while you chat online.
The Best Portable Monitors
We gave you four reasons why a portable monitor is a great choice. Now we’re going to provide you with four of the best portable monitors for gamers, professionals, and the average user.
Best Overall: ASUS ZenScreen Portable Monitor
ASUS has always been a great brand to turn to for affordable tech, including devices from the Zen family. The best portable monitor for most consumers comes from this line with the ASUS ZenScreen display, which is available in several different configurations.
The ZenScreen is a portable tablet with a 15.6-inch display and a resolution of 1,920 x 1,080. While a step down from some tablets in resolution, the IPS panel is vibrant and sharp. The sleeve or case that comes with the display makes transitioning from landscape to portrait mode a breeze with some help from the company’s DisplayWidget.
This portable panel won’t weigh you down at only 1.7 pounds. It gets power from a USB 3.2 port, and this particular model is easy to mount on tripods as well. The ASUS ZenScreen portable monitor includes Eye Care and flicker-free technology while giving users a choice of connectivity. We chose the USB 3.2 model, but there are also variants with USB Type-A and C ports.
Due to the price, size, and features, we chose the 15.6-inch ZenScreen as our top option. Consumers are getting great value for the price, and we like the fact they have different ports and a slightly smaller 14-inch model. The company’s three-year guarantee is also a bonus, especially when you consider the portable nature of these devices.
Best Premium Monitor: LG Gram +View Portable Monitor
What one user considers the best may not be true for others. While our top choice is ideal for most folks, this portable monitor kicks things up a notch. The LG Gram +View is in the premium class with a panel that rivals those found on desktop PCs and laptops.
Whether you’re creative or want a large display for mobile media, this portable monitor has you covered. The display is 16 inches with a resolution of 2,560 x 1,600 and an aspect ratio of 16:10. Color accuracy is also fantastic with the DCI-P3 color gamut. Like all the best portable monitors, the LG Gram +View gets power from a single USB cable.
This USB Type-C monitor rotates automatically when you adjust the screen. There are on-screen controls that allow users to quickly make adjustments or split the screen into multiple windows. It’s stylish despite its size and relatively thin at two inches. The LG is also lightweight and tips the scales at 2.1 pounds.
LG’s monitor isn’t cheap, as it’s in the premium class, but it’s well worth the price for professionals and media lovers. It’s well-built and accurate, and you can’t go wrong with an excellent panel from LG. The only drawback is the one-year warranty compared to companies like ASUS, which provide better guarantees.
Best Budget Monitor: Acer PM161Q Portable Monitor
Although the LG Gram is ideal for consumers looking for a flagship portable monitor, the the price rules it out for many. People in need of an affordable display to take on the go will be thrilled with the PM161A from Acer.
Acer’s portable PC monitor can do everything from multi-tasking to screen mirroring. The tilting kickstand lets users find the perfect angle, and it’s the lightest display on our list at only 1.6 pounds. It has the same resolution as our top choice with a 15.6-inch IPS 1,920 x 1,080 display, but it is considerably cheaper and slightly thinner.
Connectivity is a perk of this slim display. It has dual USB 3.1 Type-C ports and a mini HDMI port along with a micro USB. The one-watt stereo speakers are respectable, and the panel is vibrant with a range of 16.7 million colors. This monitor only has a brightness rating of 250 nits, however, which isn’t great for outdoor conditions.
This attractive portable display is available in three configurations, including a smaller 13.3-inch model with comparable specifications. The response time is good enough for gamers at 5ms, and it certainly won’t break the bank.
Best 4K: UPerfect True 4K Portable Monitor
The most popular resolution for portable monitors is FHD, although many companies produce 2K panels. We haven’t seen many brands break into 4K, but UPerfect has the best option if you’re looking for a portable 4K monitor for a PC, laptop, or mobile device.
This stunning display has a design that’s nearly borderless, surrounded by aluminum and glass. The glass back and the unique Arc Metal frame add a premium feel to the panel. It’s only 0.15 inches thick and weighs 1.5 pounds. That’s impressive for any portable monitor, but it’s jaw-dropping once you consider this display’s specifications.
Images and videos will jump off the screen with a contrast ratio of 1500:1. The resolution is 3,840 x 2,160, and it’s accurate with 100% Adobe RGB. It’s also bright with excellent viewing angles, it supports HDR, and it has low blue light with flicker-free technology. Throw in FreeSync and rear-firing speakers and you’ve got a tablet gamers can also enjoy.
It’s hard to find fault with this portable display, even though it’s from a brand most people are unfamiliar with. The UPerfect 4K monitor comes with a three-year guarantee, and there’s a 2K variant that’s slightly larger and half the price depending on your needs.
Whether you’re a photographer who needs a portable display or you want to watch media on larger screens while you travel, a portable monitor is an excellent choice. If you’re looking for a larger portable display or you are considering other options, be sure to check out our list of the best portable monitors of 2023.
|Reasons to Buy a Portable Monitor||Best Portable Monitors|
|They Expand Your Mobile Experiences||ASUS ZenScreen Portable Monitor|
|Theyâre Perfect for Portable PCs||LG Gram +View Portable Monitor|
|They Increase Productivity||Acer PM161Q Portable Monitor|
|Theyâre Great for Video Conferencing||UPerfect True 4K Portable Monitor|
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