Monitors

The Best USB Portable Monitors of 2017

A portable USB monitor is an easy and simple way to double your screen space, whether its for you laptop, desktop, or workstation PC. All you need to do is plug and go – no fancy installation needed!

A simple USB powered portable monitor can make a huge difference for you at work or at leisure by doubling the display size of your laptop or desktop PC. They are extremely easy set up – just plug and go – and price has gone way down since their introduction years ago. 

Our editors at PandaTechie have explored and examined over 20 portable USB monitors on the market today and have chosen eight of the best to be on this list. We have grouped them by their model and brands.

Without further ado, here is a list of the best portable monitors available today!

ItemASUS MB169B+ASUS MB169C+ASUS MB168BGeChic 1303HGeChic 1303iAOC e1659FwuAOC e1659Fwux- ProAOC e1759Fwu
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Editor's Rating
Resolution
1920x1080
1920x1080
1366x768
1920x1080
1920x1080
1366x768
1920x1080
1600x900
Panel Type
IPS
IPS
TN
IPS
IPS
TFT Active Matrix LCD
TFT Active Matrix LCD
TN
Size
15.6"
15.6"
15.6"
13.3"
13.3"
15.6"
15.6"
17.3"
Ports
USB 3.0
USB Type-C
USB 3.0
HDMI, VGA, Mini DP
HDMI, VGA, Mini DP
USB 3.0
USB 3.0
USB 3.0
Response Time
14ms
14ms
11ms
14ms
14ms
8ms
11ms
10ms
Price
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Our Picks for the Top 8 USB Portable Monitors


ASUS


ASUS MB169B+ | 15.6 | 1920×1080

Screen Size: 15.6″ Weight: 1.76 pounds  | Panel Type: IPS Resolution: 1920×1080 Aspect Ratio: 16/9 Brightness: 200 cd/m2 Contrast Ratio: 700:1 Refresh Rate: 60Hz Response Time: 14ms Ports: USB 

ASUS MB169B+ | 15.6 | 1920x1080

The ASUS MB169B+ is an ultra-thin Full HD 1080p IPS portable monitor that is connected and powered through just a USB 3.0 cable and port. Since it features a IPS (In-plane switching) display, something that usually only desktop PCs have, viewing angles are very good and colors are strong and accurate.

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The large 15.6″ LED IPS monitor is one of the best on a portable monitor today. The 1080p resolution means videos, presentations, and pictures are extremely crisp and clear. The colors on the display are also vibrant and the contrast ratio at 700:1 is excellent for a portable monitor. (Like a Razer gaming mouspead)

The monitor is also one of the best built we’ve seen so far. Though its mostly made of plastic, its plastic rear panel has a premium metallic feel to it. Most other portable monitors are made of a cheap, light plastic, the type you see in cars. The ASUS MB169B+ is also the thinnest portable monitor on the market. At only 0.26 inches thick and only weighing 1.76 pounds, the MB169B+ is extremely portable and convenient. The monitor also comes with a carrying case which also doubles as a stand.

If you want a very good full HD portable monitor for a reasonable price, the ASUS MB169B+ would be be our top pick. Although for gaming you should try some top monitors for gaming.

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There is also a version of this monitor that supports the new USB Type-C port, the ASUS MB169C+


ASUS MB168B | 15.6″ | 1366×768

Screen Size: 15.6″ Weight: 1.76 pounds  | Panel Type: TN Resolution: 1366×768 Aspect Ratio: 16/9 Brightness: 250 cd/m2 Contrast Ratio: 600:1 Refresh Rate: 60Hz Response Time: 14ms Ports: USB 

ASUS MB168B

Like the previous monitor, the ASUS MB169B+, the ASUS MB168B is a great portable monitor from Asus. It has virtually the same physical features as the MB169B+, but the screen resolution is smaller, at 1366×768 – meaning its a more affordable option if you don’t need a Full-HD screen. Though the display quality is not as good as the previous monitor, the MB168B is still a great portable monitor. Asus also has a good reputation amongst gamers.

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The 15.6″ 1366×768 TN display is not as good as the 1080p IPS display, with colors being slightly more diluted. However, it’s still a very good portable display. The monitor has a decent contrast ratio of 600:1 and brightness of 250 cd/m2, which is on par with desktop monitors.

The ASUS MB168B has the exact same physical design as the MB169B+, with a premium feel and a included stand/carrying case. It’s also only 0.26 inches thick – as thin as most tablets – and less than two pounds. 

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GeChic

GeChic 1303H | 13.3″ | 1920×1080

Screen Size: 13.3″ Weight: 1.76 pounds  | Panel Type: IPS Resolution: 1920×1080 Aspect Ratio: 16/9 Brightness: 300 cd/m2 Contrast Ratio: 700:1 Refresh Rate: 60Hz Response Time: 14ms Ports: HDMI, VGA, Mini Display Port

GeChic 1303H

The GeChic 1303H 13.3″ 1080p Portable Monitor is a full HD 1080 monitor and is compatible with many devices via HDMI, VGA, Mini Display Port, USB. The small size of the monitor means that pixel density is insane – giving you a very crisp image.  

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The IPS 1080p monitor supports 16.7 million colors, as much as more desktop monitors – all on a small 13.3″ display. It’s also very bright at 300 cd/m2 and the contrast ratio is also a decent 700:1. Viewing angles are the standard 178° for all IPS monitors. Connectivity is extensive: HDMI, VGA, and Mini Display Port is supported

At only 1.3 pounds and 0.41 inches thick, the GeChic 1303H is one of the lightest and compact we’ve reviewed. It comes with a aluminum carrying case. The monitor can be mounted on many different platforms, including VESA. The small screen of 13.3″ also could be a downside, but at least screen resolution is very good.

This monitor is simply unbeatable in its performance and features. When other monitors lag from USB connection and have color issues, the GeChic monitor shines. Although the monitor is rather costly, it is very well worth the cost if you need top performance. 

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GeChic 1303i Touchscreen | 13.3″ | 1920×1080

Screen Size: 13.3″ Weight: 1.90 pounds  | Panel Type: IPS Resolution: 1920×1080 Aspect Ratio: 16/9 Brightness: 300 cd/m2 Contrast Ratio: 700:1 Refresh Rate: 60Hz Response Time: 14ms Ports: HDMI, VGA, Mini Display Port

 

GeChic 1303i Touchscreen

 

The GeChic 1303i 13.3″ 1080p Touchscreen Portable Monitor is a top-of-the-line monitor that is full HD (1920x1080p) and has the display quality of a desktop monitor. What makes this monitor special is its touchscreen capabilities. Besides superb performance, you can connect this monitor to almost any device and control it through the monitor. It’s might be the most expensive portable monitor on this list, but it’s also the only one with a touchscreen.

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The GeChic 1303i is a high resolution 1080p HD monitor with a great display – 16.7 million colors, 300 cd/m2 brightness, and 700:1 contrast ratio. The monitor has a variety of color settings to fit your entertainment experience. You can fold the monitor at angles of 53°, 62°, 72°. The monitor easily fits in your backpack and is perfect for travel and business trips.

The dimming setting can also be customized to fit your light environment. The excellent multi-touch rivals that of a normal tablet or tablet-laptop. Although the monitor itself is portable, the display is smaller than conventional monitors. The monitor also comes with an aluminum case to protect the case from normal wear-and-tear. What tops off the device is that it doesn’t require any lengthy driver-installation, so you can easily take it everywhere and use it within seconds.

If you are looking for a monitor with excellent quality and performance, then the GeChic 1303i Touchscreen monitor could be the one for you.

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AOC

AOC e1659Fwu | 15.6″ | 1366×768

Screen Size: 15.6″ Weight: 2.4 pounds  | Panel Type: LCD Resolution: 1366×768 Aspect Ratio: 16/9 Brightness: 200 cd/m2 Contrast Ratio: 500:1 Refresh Rate: 60Hz Response Time: 8ms Ports: USB 3.0

AOC e1659Fwu

 

AOC e1659Fwu 16-Inch Ultra Slim is a budget portable monitor that uses a USB 3.0 cable to connect to your devices. The powerful monitor has a 8ms response time and a 1366×768 resolution that provides a smooth and clear image. It’s the most affordable portable monitor on this list so if you want a second monitor without spending too much, the AOC e1659Fwu could be a great choice.

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The 1366×768 LCD display is not the best, with the sub-optimal contrast ratio of 500:1, but the refresh rate of 60Hz and response rate of 8ms is very good. Colors are not as good as an IPS monitor, though, – you trade image quality for low cost with this monitor. Fortunately, There is no visual lag, artifacting, or any other movement issues.

The monitor is ultra-lightweight which makes it perfect for business travel and vacation. It also contains a VESA 75 x 75 mm Mount Compliant device that makes the monitor perfect for hanging onto any flat surface. For gaming computers and workstations, the portable monitor can be connected as a second monitor to provide a true multitasking experience. The monitor also comes with a sturdy stand that allows the monitor to be adjusted to any angle! The USB cable also divides into 2 cables and does not require an external AC connector. (If you are an enthusiast gamer instead of a regular gamer, a USB monitor won’t do the job for dual or triple monitor setups, check out our guide on triple monitor stands)

As a budget monitor, the AOC e1659Fwu is a pretty good performer.

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AOC e1659Fwu Pro | 15.6″ | 1920×1080

Screen Size: 15.6″ Weight: 2.4 pounds  | Panel Type: IPS Resolution: 1920×1080 Aspect Ratio: 16/9 Brightness: 300 cd/m2 Contrast Ratio: 500:1 Refresh Rate: 60Hz Response Time: 11ms Ports: USB 3.0

AOC e1659Fwu Pro

The AOC e1659Fwux Pro 16-Inch Class monitor is the 1080p version of the e1659Fwu, the previous monitor. It connects through USB 3.0 and comes with a protective case. It has full 1080p HD and is perfect for complimenting an existing device.

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The 1080p LCD monitor is sharp, but the colors appear washed out and there is some glare to the screen. Its display quality not as good as the ASUS MB169B+, so if are are able to spend a bit more, go for that monitor. The response time for this monitor is 11ms and the refresh rate is 60Hz, which are perfectly acceptable.

The AOC e1659Fwu is mobile and links to separate devices such as a tablet or PC easily. The monitor is perfect for office work such as spreadsheets and documents and does not require any external AC power. The USB cable also splits into a “Y”, allowing compatibility with older computers to bring more power into the display. The monitor also has a 75mm VESA mount, which can come in handy.

The AOC e1759Fwu 16″ costs around 50% more than the AOC e1759Fwu, with the only improvement being a 1080p display. Though this is still a decent monitor, we would recommend you the ASUS MB169B+ if you want a 1080p monitor since it is an all-around much better portable monitor.

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AOC e1759Fwu | 17.3″ | 1600×900

Screen Size: 15.6″ Weight: 2.82 pounds  | Panel Type: TN Resolution: 1600×900 Aspect Ratio: 16/9 Brightness: 220 cd/m2 Contrast Ratio: 650:1 Refresh Rate: 60Hz Response Time: 10ms Ports: USB 3.0

AOC e1759Fwu

The AOC e1759Fwu 17.3-Inch Ultra Slim monitor is unique monitor with 600 x 1900 pixel resolution TN display, which is smaller than 1080p but larger than 720p. At 17.3 inches, it’s also the largest monitor on this list. It’s got a rather thin bezel for a portable monitor (Check our our guide on slim-bezel monitors for more on that)

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The AOC e1759Fwu display quality is acceptable. While not as good as an IPS display, the TN display on this monitor preforms a bit better than the AOC e1759Fwu and AOC e1759Fwu. Colors are still a bit muted but movement quality is great – as with most TN monitors. 

The monitor has mostly the same design as the previous two monitors – just larger. It retains the great folding stand that the other two monitors have and maintains a lightweight build, weighing in at just under three pounds. A carrying case is included as well as the 75mm VESA mount hole.

The AOC e1759Fwu has a slightly better quality display than both the AOC e1659Fwu and AOC e1659Fwux and occupies a unique place in the portable monitors market, being both a TN monitor and a 1600×900 display. It’s got better specification than some gaming laptops under 500.

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Conclusion

Thank you for checking out our USB monitor guide! We hope that this guide will help you find the best portable monitor out there!

*Please make sure to email bill@pandatechie.com if you spot any errors in the writing, we try to update the content as much as possible however we make mistakes. If any products that we reviewed run out of stock or any errors in the content, please inform us.

The Best USB Portable Monitors of 2017
4.73 (94.67%) 15 votes

About the author

Bill Yang

  • jonna

    what is the best overall usb monitor?

    • Bill Yang

      For the greatest price/performance ratio, go for the ASUS MB169B+

  • Stephen

    I’m not tech savvy at all and can barely use my laptop so I fear that I won’t be able to install a second monitor. Is the install easy?

    • Bill Yang

      Yes! All you need to do is plug the monitor into your USB port and the drivers will automatically install.

  • John

    I bought the last monitor on the list. So far its working good, thanks for the advice!

  • Hunter

    What is USB-c?

  • Anonymous

    My old portable monitor just broke after around a year of use. Any recommendations for a durable monitor that can withstand daily use for years?