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Finding The Right Portable Monitor for Laptop: What You Need to Know

In a hybrid workplace where projects often extend beyond the confines of one’s office, having a portable monitor for your laptop can be a game-changer. Whether you’re a professional on the go, an at-home worker needing extra screen real estate, or a business owner looking to optimize productivity, portable monitors provide the flexibility and convenience you need.  

Read on to learn more about the right portable monitor for a laptop or explore ViewSonic’s wide range of Workspace Solutions to suit any professional need. 

As technology advances, portable monitors have become more compact and lighter, with USB-C connectivity for easy power charging, video, audio, and data transfer, as well as high-speed connectivity through a single cable. 

What to Consider When Buying an External Monitor 

Let’s explore key factors to consider that could help you make an informed decision when purchasing a portable display: 

Screen Size  

Since you want to extend a screen estate for yourself or your employees, make sure you’ve got a display that’s big enough. The most common portable models on the market will have display sizes ranging from 15 inches to 17 inches. Ultimately, the size of the portable display should align with your specific usage requirements and enhance your overall experience.  

Total Weight 

The weight of the portable monitor is another important factor to consider, especially if it’s meant to be carried around. Although what may seem not so heavy at the store or while browsing online options, it will feel different after carrying the device all day between client meetings and conferences. You can be sure your back will thank you for choosing a display that weighs less than 1 kilogram (2.2 pounds). 

Connectivity Options 

Having multiple connectivity options enhances compatibility with various devices, particularly when you’re on the go. Portable monitors typically feature HDMI or DisplayPort, but having a USB-C port is essential for seamless integration with your laptop. 

USB-C monitor is a one-cable solution that not only transmits over 60W power but also transfers data and video signals. This means you can connect your portable display to your laptop as well as other mobile devices with USB-C port such as the new iPhone 15 series, eliminating the need for multiple cables and adapters. 

If you want to learn more about different USB types, you might appreciate reading USB-C, USB-B, and USB-A: What’s the Difference? 

Display Quality  

Display quality is like a Russian doll of features. This is why, you want to know what you’re going to use the monitor for, because different features may accommodate different budgets and priorities. Here it’s important to think of resolution, monitor panel type, refresh rates, color gamut, or viewing angles. Additionally, you might want to think about your eye health and choose an option that will safeguard you from getting a digital eye strain. 

Touch Functionality 

A touchscreen function is a valuable feature found in some portable monitors, especially for small team communication and creative work. It serves as a versatile tool for individual creation, client meetings, presentations, and brainstorming sessions.  

The portable display’s design encompasses an adjustable wide stand and a pivoting display, offering support for various working angles. It’s also worth noting to check if your mobile device supports USB touch signal transmission to enable touch feedback control on the monitor. 

Vertical Layout 

Being able to pivot your orientation and adjust your viewing experience can be worth its weight in gold, especially for coding or photo editing. By switching between landscape and portrait modes, you can easily view portrait photos or scan through lengthy code blocks. 

What To Consider When Buying An External Monitor

Portable Monitor Recommendations for Different Work Scenarios 

There are many portable monitor uses so let’s take a look at how they apply to different workflows: 

Work On-The-Go 

If you frequently travel or work outside the office, having a portable monitor can help you stay productive, an external monitor with a size between 15 to 17 inches and a Full HD (1920 x 1080) resolution would suffice for most day-to-day task such as one-on-one presentation with your client. Having an extra screen space also makes multitasking a breeze. Look for a lightweight and compact display with adjustable stands, slim bezels, built-in speakers, and a protective carrying case for added convenience. For touch displays, make sure to check their hardness to be at least 6H hardness or more for better durability. 

If your tasks include reading extensive lines of code all day or video editing, you might want to get a 4k high-resolution IPS portable monitor. This ensures that you can work with precision and clarity, allowing for a more detailed and immersive experience. Otherwise, you should be content with 1080p resolution. 

Gaming and Entertainment 

For those who work in the gaming or entertainment industry who constantly require access to multimedia entertainment might use a portable monitor for gaming on the go or for a larger, more immersive screen experience. Some portable monitors come with features like high refresh rates (at least 144Hz), low response time, and Variable Refresh Rate Technology like AMD FreeSync Premium will be of key importance. ViewSonic’s VX1755 checks all these boxes, providing smooth gameplay on the road. 

Digital Design 

Graphic designers, video editors, and content creators often require a larger screen with excellent color accuracy and a wide color gamut. A portable monitor can serve as a secondary display for editing images, videos, or working on design projects, offering more screen real estate and improving workflow efficiency.  

Consider an external display with an OLED panel, a high resolution (1080p Full HD) and pre-calibrated hardware for precise color reproduction. The best models out there offer 100% DCI-P3 Pantone Validated color coverage, ensuring compatibility with Mac. This level of color performance matches Apple’s Retina Display, making it an ideal companion for Mac users.  

Additionally, these top-tier models come with a height-adjustable stand and an attachable hood to eliminate ambient light. Maintain your workflow seamlessly, regardless of the artwork’s orientation. Explore the screen’s vertical mode to achieve stunning, pixel-perfect portrait or poster designs. 

Who Is A Portable Monitor For

Final Thoughts 

Investing in a portable monitor for laptop is a game-changer, benefiting both office workers and individuals on the go. Once you carefully consider key features and align your choice with your specific needs, you should be able to find a perfect portable display match.  

The first aspect to take into account is the seamless USB-C plug-and-play connectivity, which serves as a good starting point. Then move on to evaluating other important factors such as optimal screen size, the right weight, display quality, orientation control, and touch functionality. 

If you enjoyed this article, make sure to read How to get the most out of USB-C cables and accessories? Or discover ViewSonic’s best portable monitor solutions. 

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