Multitasking on your desktop at home or at the office is always easier when you add an additional monitor or two into the mix. It all becomes much clearer, without unnecessary switching between tabs, with a portable monitor (also known as a USB monitor).
After many hours of research and several revisions over the years, we believe the Lepow Upgraded 15.6 Inch Full HD Portable Monitor is currently the best portable monitor currently available on the market.
When on the go, however, in the confinement of our small laptop screen or tablet, things do not look as bright. Manufacturers have considered this and have come up with lightweight USB cable connected portable monitors, which anyone can pack along with their laptop or console while traveling or unable to use a multi-monitor setup.
- The 10 Best Portable Monitors:
- 1. Lepow Upgraded 15.6 Inch Full HD Portable Monitor
- 2. Asus ZenScreen Touch (MB16AMT)
- 3. Lenovo ThinkVision M14
- 4. ASUS MB168B 15.6 Inch LED USB Portable Monitor
- 5. AOC e1659Fwu 16 Inch Ultra Slim Portable Monitor
- 6. AOC e1759Fwu 17-Inch Ultra-Slim Portable Monitor
- 7. Eleduino 17.3 Inch Portable Gaming Monitor
- 8. ViewSonic 15.6 Inch 1080p Portable Monitor
- 9. GAEMS M155 15.5 Inch HD LED Portable Monitor
- 10. GeChic 2501C 15.6 Inch Portable Monitor with HDMI
- What to Consider When Buying a Portable Monitor
The 10 Best Portable Monitors:
When buying a handy portable USB monitor, you should consider a variety of factors, mainly what the monitor will be used for – gaming, movies, work, reading, etc.
Below we have the 10 best portable USB monitors based on their capabilities, maximum resolution, viewing angles, and ease of portability:
1. Lepow Upgraded 15.6 Inch Full HD Portable Monitor
- For a 15.6 model, it’s surprisingly lightweight
- HDMI and USB-C support
- Fairly priced
- Color reproduction could be better
- Portrait mode isn’t possible with the stand
Lepow is more uncommon than many of the other brands featured on this list. It is a Chinese company and the Z1 Pro is one of their more popular models. It boasts many of the expected features for a budget portable monitor like 1920×1090 resolution, 15,6 display and below-average color reproduction.
A collection of the devices smaller features are what set the Z1 Pro apart from many of the competitors in the budget portable monitor range. Offering features such as USB-C option and micro-HDMI port that come with the necessary cables for both options.
It comes with a stand that features little grooves to provide choice in viewing angle. While the stand doesn’t support portrait mode, these slight viewing angle options are still to be appreciated. On top of it all, the weight. Considering this is a 15,6 model, it’s really surprising that is only weight 1.71lbs.
On the other hand, there are a few elements to this device that hinder its overall score. For starters, the brightness and color reproduction. This isn’t an uncommon issue with budget portable monitors, it’s still disappointing none the less.
Overall, this device does the job and it takes a decent approach to how well it performs.
2. Asus ZenScreen Touch (MB16AMT)
- Battery and speakers Built-in.
- Menus are comprehensive and easily navigatable.
- Great brightness and contrast ratio.
- Touch support for Macs is limited.
- No IOS support.
- Colors sometimes appear to be on the dull side.
- For a mobile monitor, it’s pricey.
The ASUS ZenScreen Touch already has a major feature that sets it apart from other companies, touch screen. This is something that is very rarely featured in portable monitors. Another difference is the built-in battery, it’s perfect to use on your laptop and even your phone.
This device does seemingly have a software preference, and that is Windows and Android for phones. Mac and IOS have not been given their fair share of support. IOS is currently not supported at all. This a more unfortunate side effect of the Apple Mac and IOS operating systems not being built to accommodate such features.
The ZenScreen is a 15,6-inch, touch-sensitive 1920x1080p IPS panel. Controlling settings is easy with two options available. The first option is to use the five-way joystick which is on the bottom of the monitor. The second option is to use a Windows App which allows you to configure many of the available settings. You get a stylus with the device, it is quick to respond and has proven reliable.
You can connect this portable monitor using either a micro-HDMI, a USB-A or USB-C. Despite the additional feature of touch screen capabilities, it doesn’t weigh much more than your average portable monitor.
Considering it is one of the few touch screen models available, the ASUS Zenscreen Touch is the clear winner.
3. Lenovo ThinkVision M14
- Protective Sleeve Provided.
- Great Color fidelity.
- Many tilt angle options.
- Only connectible via USB
- OSD Controls are limited
Lenovo has proven itself, time and time again, to be one of the biggest competitors when it comes to quality products. When they designed the ThinkVision M14, they clearly weren’t coasting on their past success. The ThinkVision M14 is a powerful portable monitor that features some of the best picture quality available as well as being able to create a surprisingly light device.
The display screen is smaller than most of its competitors at 14 inches. Regardless it still features the typical resolution seen across the board of 1920×1080 FHD. This all means that the quality is sharper, and weights less as stated before. Weighing in at 1.26lbs, it weighs nearly an average of .50lbs less, than most alternatives.
The biggest area where this device seems to beat many alternatives is in the color reproduction. The colors are accurate, bright and vibrant. The screen is even finished with an anti-glare which means you’ll never have an obstructed view from natural light or fluorescents.
You can connect the device using USB-C, one is provided on each side. In order to power the device you can either use your laptop, or the charger, or even both at the same time. Considering that your options are more limited in terms of connection, older laptop model owners are advised to bear this in mind when deciding on a portable monitor.
Lenovo is a great brand, and as a result, they’ve made an amazing product.
4. ASUS MB168B 15.6 Inch LED USB Portable Monitor
- 15.6-inch display.
- Easy to transport.
- Comes with a carry case which also doubles as a stand.
- Lower performance on USB 2.0.
- 1366 x 768 resolution.
From powerful PC parts to quality gaming setups and monitors, ASUS have proven their ability to create outstanding products of the highest quality. The Taiwanese IT company did not take long to come up with a great on-the-go solution, just as good for gaming, as it is for your daily needs when traveling and not having access to your desktop PC.
You might also be interested in the ASUS MB169B+.
This is another USB powered HD monitor which is to this day, the slimmest and most lightweight portable USB monitor in the world. Coming in at a little less than 2 pounds, this stylish HD monitor offers fluid and fast imaging with great contrast and features an automatic lighting sensor, which adjusts the brightness of the screen, according to the ambient lighting conditions.
With the exclusive ASUS EZlink technology, you can connect up to five portable monitors via USB 3.0, regardless of your computer’s graphic capacities. Unlike other portable monitors, this one also offers backward compatibility with the older USB 2.0 ports, which can prove convenient if you need to pair the screen with an older computer.
If you are worried about the warranty of this pencil-thin device, do not delve too much into it. ASUS offers its Rapid Replacement option with this product, meaning a three-year warranty, complete with two-way free shipping.
Furthermore, the MB168B comes equipped with its own ASUS Smart Case, a two-way adjustable stand for either portrait or landscape orientation and a protective sleeve. To sum it up, this monitor will set you back more than others, but it certainly offers a lot more in return.
5. AOC e1659Fwu 16 Inch Ultra Slim Portable Monitor
- Compatible with Windows, Mac, and Linux.
- Quick, easy setup.
- Brilliant value for money.
- The full HD version is pricey.
- Bulky design.
- Mouse lag means this isn’t the best for gaming.
To conclude, our top 5 list is the AOC e1659Fwu. Another fantastic pick, presented by AOC, the 16-inch LED LCD portable monitor with 500:1 contrast ratio sports a sleek and classy design, appropriate for any occasion, work, or leisure. Cable management will not be a problem here, since the monitor is powered by 3.0 USB, making for an easy Plug&Play installation via a single cable.
At 5ms response time, this is a crisp gaming solution for the lag-free experience. Even though no protective sleeve or case is included with the standard packaging, the display is lightweight and slim, easily portable inside any laptop bag and it perfect for frequent travelers and businessmen.
Moreover, flexi-stand and a wall mount are included, so you can set the monitor up on your wall with ease as long as you have the right wall arm and bracket. Also, this would be quite beneficial as the auto-pivot feature recognizes the switch from landscape to portrait view and adjusts accordingly.
With those features, anyone can have a multi-display set up just like in The Matrix, without the awful cable management now, and not in the distant sci-fi future. As the cheapest USB monitor on the market today, the LOC e1659Fwu is a perfect budget solution for the productivity ninjas looking for an extra monitor or two to double their work capacity.
6. AOC e1759Fwu 17-Inch Ultra-Slim Portable Monitor
- The colors are accurate.
- Share image quality.
- Grayscale isn’t great.
- Viewing angles are often narrow.
AOC is one of the most well-renowned companies specializing in producing crystal clear monitors, which are great for both work and gaming, while still maintaining a competitive price. This monitor is fully powered via USB 3.0, which means no additional cables laying around. With a 650:1 contrast ratio, the monitor’s maximum resolution is 1600×900 @60hz for a great HD experience.
You might also be interested in the AOC I1601FWUX.
The ultra-slim design ensures an easy carry for every on-the-go need, such as a presentation, and the foldable flexi-stand offers an effortless switch between portrait and landscape view accompanied by an auto-pivot mode, so you do not have to switch the orientation manually.
All these features and the 16 million colors provide a picture-perfect set up for enjoying movies or reading a text without straining your eyes too much. This is an overall quality purchase for anyone who does not want to reach too deep into their pockets but still wants a good monitor to have when traveling.
7. Eleduino 17.3 Inch Portable Gaming Monitor
- Larger screen size.
- Seven available viewing angle options.
- Great refresh rate and response time.
- On the heavier side.
- Below average color reproduction.
- Stand doesn’t support portrait mode.
The Eleduino M173A is a rare find in the portable monitor category. The reason it’s rare is due to the fact that it’s one of the few, if not only, portable monitors that features a 17-inch screen. Most portable monitors average 15,6-inch screen size. Many could argue it somewhat defeats the purpose of having a portable screen and perhaps this is why producers of portable monitors don’t go bigger than 15.6-inches.
The Eleduino features a 25601440 resolution. It has a refresh rate f 12oHz and a response time of 5ms. This shows any consumer that while the screens real estate is larger, it isn’t causing the device to underperform. You can connect the Eleduino using a mini-HDMI or a USB-C and they provide the options included in the product.
You can use portrait mode with this device but the stand does not support portrait view. On a display front, the device features a decent brightness, however, the color reproduction isn’t great. While relatively on par with most of the downfalls that feature in numerous portable monitors, some colors are muted such as reds and purples.
The biggest downfall of this product comes in the form of its weight. Weighing 1.5kg it is a little under double what most average models weigh. While this isn’t necessarily the worst thing in the world, it does add to a less compact/easy to travel with the device.
Overall, considering the price, the Eleduino model is worth it if you’re looking for a bigger screen and are able to overlook what are considering the cons of this device.
8. ViewSonic 15.6 Inch 1080p Portable Monitor
- OSD is fully realized.
- Five-way joystick controller.
- Bright display and a great contrast ratio.
- A built-in stand that offers easy tilt.
- Decently priced.
- Occasionally colors appear dull in certain media.
The ViewSonic is somewhat similar to most competitor portable screens, however, it does feature some unusual features. For starters, it has a built-in stand, this is not often found with portable monitors. It is more common to find a stand that is separate from the device so this is something truly unique when it comes to this product.
But what about the device itself? Well like stated before, it is similar to competitors in some regards. It features two USB-C and mini-HDMI ports for connection. One of the USB-C ports is used for power, the other as an optional display port.
Due to a less than adequate sRGB color-gamut, you’d want to avoid media files and work primarily with text-related content. It has proven to have slightly better brightness than some alternatives out there. Additional features include built-in speakers, a five-way mini-joystick controller, and an OSD with a ton of options.
This is not a top of the range or brilliant device. However, considering the price and what it can do, it’s well worth the money. Even with its somewhat limited features, it can still provide you with a great secondary display.
9. GAEMS M155 15.5 Inch HD LED Portable Monitor
|Resolution||1366×768 (1080p scaled)|
- Video/audio options are able to be adjusted with the IR remote which is included.
- Any device that has HDMI can connect to this device.
- Text sometimes appears blurry when used with a PC.
- Average viewing angles.
Midway through our list, it is time to turn our attention to a product, screaming “hardcore gamer” right off the bat. Gaems M155 is targeted towards the console gamers, LAN party fans, and anyone who wants to enjoy gaming anywhere they are.
Almost as light as the Asus monitor, this portable gaming companion offers 720p (1080p scaled) resolution at 16:9 aspect ratio and could not be easier to plug and play. The hinged anti-slip rubber feet help the screen stay perfectly on top of a PlayStation 4 or Xbox One, but it also fits and holds steady just as good on any surface.
In case you feel like streaming, there is even a camera mount with a quarter-inch socket compatible with most mounts clamps and tripods. Although the monitor is virtually lag-free and ideal for your daily gaming needs, it may present blurriness when displaying plain texts well as poor viewing angles, making it the right fit for everyone sitting in front, but not an ideal crowd-pleaser.
Another feature some might dislike is the glossy screen. While it complements the sleek design of the monitor, not everyone likes fingerprints on their monitor all the time.
Lastly, for those who love game immersion, the Gaems M155 is equipped with a single speaker and a standard 3.5mm audio jack if you decide to go full headphones mode. In any case, whether you want a great second monitor to have around while traveling, or a gaming comrade always ready to go, the M155 is a classy choice.
10. GeChic 2501C 15.6 Inch Portable Monitor with HDMI
- Compatible with Windows, Mac, and Linux.
- Plug&Play for ultimate convenience.
- Real video input.
- Light and thin.
Moving straight to our priciest pick from the list, the GeChic 2501C is an impressive portable monitor, which combines power and style in a sleek modern package. Simple Plug&Play installation means no additional drivers needed, just connect via USB for power and data, choose your video input and you would be good to go.
Unlike others on this list, this monitor uses Real Video input, meaning no Full HD, which does not necessarily do justice to the 1080p content out there, but on the other hand, makes for a lag-free picture – an ideal gaming environment.
Extending your display to this monitor will prove to be highly beneficial for any photographer, IT technician and web designer alike, because of its clear and sharp image representation that complements of 400:1 contrast and a variety of viewing angles.
In addition, the 2501C is lightweight and thin, ideal for easy transport, and a perfect fit for any laptop bag. Being a high end buy, this USB monitor does not disappoint, meets all the requirements for an extra screen, and delivers a terrific viewing experience.
What to Consider When Buying a Portable Monitor
Now that we have looked through a list of great options for any activity, you might consider while traveling, let us focus on the key features to consider when buying a portable USB monitor.
Obviously, the resolution is key when looking into buying a portable monitor. You would not want to be stuck with a pixelated screen, worse than your laptop’s, when extending your display or when you buy monitor meant to help you have a multi-display in a business meeting so you don’t have to constantly rotate your laptop from one person or another to share your screen.
Even if you are looking for some entertainment, it is crucial that the display does not strain your eyes, so look for at least a 720p HD resolution when on the market for a portable monitor.
Another key factor to consider when you decide to invest in a USB monitor is its weight. We do not want only “moveable”, we want “portable”. Many great displays on the market are bulky and hard to carry around and you should not pay for extra baggage on your flight or have an inconvenience transporting your monitor.
Instead, it should be a sleek tablet-like accessory, which should serve all your needs and help you achieve optimal results, while not being too much trouble carrying it around.
Monitor Panel Display Type
While still a niche product, portable USB monitors have come a long way in terms of implemented technologies, so take into consideration the type of the monitor panel as you would a normal display for your desktop PC.
If you are an editor, designer or photographer who is constantly on the road, there are IPS panel options, which offer great quality for such a small display and can present vibrant colors with great contrast.
On the other hand, gamers who are traveling and have long layovers, or pro gamers who are looking to get a few matches between official games, can get a good number of TN displays with low response time for a portable monitor. Pack your console and display in your backpack and you are good to go to take on the competition.
We are talking about USB portable monitors after all, but even if you look into the best USB monitor, you should also be aware of other connectivity types. Many models offer other connections like HDMI or VGA. It is important to get to have at least one other type of connection on your portable monitor.
If you are doing a presentation, for example, and your USB ports are all full you can connect an HDMI to a larger screen or even a VGA port to a desktop computer, if you are a technician trying to fix a computer.
Even gamers run out of USB ports and even USB cables once they connect their controllers to a laptop when they get together, so having the option to connect the monitor another way is always a plus.
Gaming, photography, presentations, casual evening watching a movie or just constant traveling, portable monitors have become a great addition for anyone looking to expand their toolkit and whoever wants to improve their work environment outside of the office.
GAEMS are well known for their gaming solutions, so look no further if you are looking to take your games to the next level. On the other hand, when choosing a stylish device, which you can use daily and present at any formal event while traveling light, any option from LOC or the highly reputable ASUS monitor will be the right choice for any occasion.
Which one is your favorite portable monitor? What do you use it for? Which one would you like to have? Share your thoughts in the comment section below
This article was last updated on May 25, 2021 .