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Best Displaylink monitor (aka USB monitor) out there, as of late 2013
on December 16, 2013
UPDATE: I wanted to highlight this fact: This is a DisplayLink device. Therefore, this monitor will use your laptop/desktop's power supply and CPU (not GPU).
As of now, this has to be the best DisplayLink (that is, USB interface/CPU powered monitor) out there. No other monitor has a higher resolution (1920x1080) on a 15.6" screen. There are some that match this monitor's resolution. But those units are over 20". I don't see how anyone can realistically carry around a unit larger than 16" on a daily basis.
This is NOT an IPS display. But for my purpose: portable screen for software development and spreadsheets, it's perfect.
1366x768: 20 columns by 28 rows
1920x1080: 29 columns by 45 rows (2.3 times as many viewable cells)
If you want a portable monitor with an IPS display, for greater color accuracy, wait for the Lenovo monitor coming out early 2014. I believe that unit will be a 13.3" display with 1600x900 resolution, which starts at twice the cost of this unit. Just letting you know of other options for your consideration.
I've tested this unit on two laptops... a Acer S3 and Lenovo Yoga Pro. Both laptops provide enough power to allow for full brightness though one usb port. I've tried both USB2 and 3. Works without issue in both cases. But I have a feeling I'll be carrying around my laptop's power supply from now on.
Also tested on a Mac... works great. But you cannot adjust the brightness.
Also, for clarification, you DO NOT need to install the software that comes with this device. The display is plug-and-play on Windows. The only software you may need to install is the DisplayLink software, which is independent of ASUS or any manufacturer. If you hate bloatware like I do, just download the appropriate driver from the DisplayLink site.
You only need to install the software that came with this device if you require the auto-illuminate and auto-rotate features. If you'd rather not deal with finding the DisplayLink software yourself from the DisplayLink site, the software is available on this device's disk.
1) Best DisplayLink monitor currently on the market. I've looked around and this really hits the sweet spot in terms of resolution and size.
2) 1920 x 1080 is a big plus. Display room is the reason someone would even consider these monitors, so why not get the most resolution possible that doesn't compromise visual comfort.
3) 15.6 inch display. My personal preference is not to have a laptop or monitor larger than this size to carry around. As it is, this monitor is barely small enough to fit in my regular sized school backpack.
4) The display is sharp, contrast is good. Side-by-side with the IPS display on the Lenovo Yoga Pro... yes the Yoga's display is better. But not by much.
5) Single USB3 cable for power and connection. Works fine with USB 2 or 3 ports. No dedicated power cable required. Very nice!
6) Nice case to protect and carry the unit.
7) Did I mention this monitor is a work of art? I'm not talking about the display, when in use. I'm just commenting on how it looks when you're simply admiring the device. It's a gorgeous unit.
8) Price. 200 is VERY reasonable for this display.
1) The connection on the monitor is very delicate. I tried putting it in Portrait mode and the monitor disconnected. Not a big deal, as this will always be used in Landscape mode.
2) Cable is a bit short. This may limit you to using the Asus monitor only to the right of your laptop in some cases. Not a big deal... but a longer cable if this is going to be an issue for you.
3) Stand: As nice as the case is, it's also suppose to double as the monitor's stand. The implementation is a bit goofy. I may change my mind on this, but anything you have to prop up with the case and secure with velcro (in the front, to keep the monitor from sliding) is a questionable design decision.
UPDATE: I purchased the Anker Multi-Angle Portable Stand. Works great with this monitor. Very stable and has good range for display angle:
4) The metal back finish appears to be glued onto the unit. It was slightly popping out in the middle. I pushed it back on. It's fine. Not that big a minus.
I'll update if there's anything new to add.
So far, a job very well done, Asus!