The Best Portable Monitors of 2023

Whether you are multitasking on a laptop and need a bigger or second screen, portable monitors can add crucial screen real estate to your setup on the go.

UPDATE: 12/12/2023

We’ve updated our roundup with the latest and greatest portable monitors. Take a look!

What to Look For in a Portable Monitor in 2023

Although portable monitors have the same primary function as regular monitors, there are a few specific things to consider before buying one.

Size is one of the most important factors, as it directly impacts the portability of a monitor. If you buy too large a size, you may have trouble carrying it around, which ruins the point! Also, you generally want the monitor to fit in your laptop bag or carry-on luggage. Fortunately, a wide variety of sizes are available on the market.

The available input ports on a portable monitor are also crucial to your buying decision. You want the setup to be as simple as possible. There is no point in lugging around multiple adapters, cables, or docks; needing to do so would ruin the portability factor.

If your laptop has a USB Type-C port that supports DisplayPort Alt Mode, you’ll be better off with a monitor with a Type-C input. Similarly, if your laptop has an HDMI out or a DisplayPort, you can look for corresponding ports on the portable monitors. Make sure to buy the right monitor type for your device to avoid frustration down the line.

Some manufacturers also provide built-in batteries in their portable monitors, making them useful when away from a power socket. You generally don’t want your laptop battery powering the monitor constantly, as you’d lose your charge fast.

In addition, built-in batteries are vital for portable gaming monitors as gaming can deplete your laptop battery quickly even when not using it to power the monitor.

Let’s not forget about screen quality, though. It’s a harsh truth that most portable monitors aren’t as good-looking as regular desktop monitors. So, checking what users or reviewers say about a particular portable monitor’s screen quality is always a good idea before purchasing. That said, you won’t have any issues with the screen quality of our recommendations.

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ASUS ZenScreen OLED MQ16AH against a bright backdrop
ASUS

Pros

Cons

✓ Factory-calibrated for color accuracy

✗ The included Smart Case feels a tad flimsy

✓ Offers a wide color gamut experience

✗ Not great for gaming

✓ Excellent motion clarity

✓ Superb picture quality

✓ Available in two sizes

✓ Good build quality and high portability

We’re jump-starting this guide with the ASUS ZenScreen OLED MQ16AH, one of the best portable monitors around. The ZenScreen OLED MQ16AH features a wide color gamut experience, high peak brightness, 1080p resolution, 60Hz refresh rate with standout 1ms motion performance, and pretty good portability. It’s a fantastic choice for everyone looking for a portable monitor, aside from handheld and mobile gamers, due to its 60Hz refresh rate.

The portable monitor weighs around 1.4 pounds and is less than 10mm thick, which, combined with its 15.6-inch screen, makes it a perfect companion for any regular-sized laptop. The OLED panel used here has superb color accuracy and complete coverage of the sRGB and DCI-P3 color ranges—good news for all creatives eyeing the MQ16AH.

The selling package includes three cables: a single USB-C to USB-C cable, one USB-C to USB-A cable, and a mini HDMI to HDMI cable. You’re also getting a power cable. Another interesting tidbit and potentially useful feature is the option to transform the box the monitor comes in into a monitor hood that should help block ambient light while doing color-critical work.

The peak brightness is set at 400 nits, which isn’t perfect for outdoor usage but should be bright enough to see content shown on the monitor in all situations except when viewing it in direct sunlight. The 1080p resolution might sound underwhelming, but due to the 15.6-inch screen, you’re looking at a pixel density of 141 DPI, comparable to a 32-inch 4K monitor.

Ports-wise, you have two USB-C ports with DP Alt functionality, one mini HDMI port, a 3.5mm audio jack, and an additional USB-C port for charging without video input capability. ASUS has put a single USB-C with video input capabilities on each side of the monitor, allowing owners to hook the monitor from whichever side they prefer. Another positive is the presence of a tripod mount on the back, giving you even more freedom to use the monitor the way you like.

Regarding downsides, there’s the lack of a built-in kickstand. You are getting a handy Smart Case to prop the monitor horizontally or vertically. The case is pretty stable, but it can be tricky to set it up right off the bat since it supports a lot of different positions.

While the ASUS ZenScreen OLED is also available in the 13.3-inch screen flavor, we recommend opting for the INNOCN 13.3″ OLED portable monitor instead if you’re looking for something more compact. The INNOCN 13.3″ OLED is much more affordable while performing very close to the 13.3-inch version of the ASUS ZenScreen OLED.

ASUS ZenScreen OLED MQ16AH
Asus ZenScreen OLED MQ16AH

Best 4K Portable Monitor

The Asus ZenScreen OLED MQ16AH is a high-end portable monitor with fantastic image quality, wide color gamut support, and a highly attractive industrial design. It’s one of the best choices on the market for any type of usage aside from gaming. 

Vilva Portable Monitor against a peachy background
VILVA

Pros

Cons

✓ Competitive price

✗ A bit on the heavier side for a portable monitor

✓ Wide compatibility

✗ Not made for gaming

✓ Full sRGB color space coverage

✗ Less than ideal for color-critical work

✓ Comes bundled with multiple video cables

✓ Features a built-in kickstand and a screen cover

The VILVA 15.6-inch Portable Monitor is a remarkable budget monitor for just under $100. The monitor comes with a 1080p, 60hz IPS panel, it’s got a USB-C with DP Alt and a mini HDMI port, the screen features slim bezels, and you’re also getting a cover that plays the role of a kickstand and a screen cover.

Portability-wise, the weight of just under 1.9 pounds and the width of about 10mm at the thickest point combine to create a reasonably portable travel companion you can tuck inside most laptop bags. The lower weight would’ve been perfect, but considering the price, we’re happy with the overall portability of this monitor.

Note that both video ports are located on the left side of the device, with the power and navigation buttons placed on the opposite side. It’s not perfect, but we couldn’t expect a sub-$100 budget offering with USB-C ports on both sides.

The monitor works with virtually any device, from regular laptops and desktop PCs to game consoles and smartphones. You’re good to go if the device comes with an HDMI or a USB-C port with DP Alt mode. And despite being a budget option, you don’t have to worry about getting appropriate video cables since the monitor comes with a USB-C to USB-C cable, Mini HDMI to HDMI cable, and a USB-A to USB-C cable.

The maximum brightness won’t burn your corneas, but it’s high enough to use the monitor outside if you’re in the shade. Concerning the color gamut, 100% sRGB coverage won’t blow your mind but is good enough for any scenario that doesn’t include professional photo or video editing. If you need a portable monitor, check our best overall pick or our other recommendations with an OLED panel.

Vilva Portable Monitor
VILVA Portable Monitor

Best Budget Portable Monitor

While it is a budget option, the Vilva 15.6-inch portable monitor offers a ton for the money. Excellent image quality, high brightness, vivid colors, and wide compatibility thanks to its USB-C and mini HDMI ports. 

A person using a MacBook and the ViewSonic VP16-OLED for photo editing
ViewSonic

Pros

Cons

✓ A perfect choice for color-critical work

✗ Could’ve been a bit more affordable

✓ Full HD OLED display with fantastic image quality

✗ The built-in stand harms portability

✓ USB-C and micro-HDMI connectivity with 40W USB PD

✓ Built-in ergonomic stand

✓ Comes with a removable monitor hood

The ViewSonic VP16-OLED is an attractive portable monitor that comes with a built-in ergonomic stand, lots of ports, a stunning 1080p, 60Hz OLED panel with 10-bit color depth, and commendable maximum brightness. It’s a perfect companion for any MacBook thanks to its dual USB-C ports with DP Alt support. Wide color gamut support also makes it ideal for any color-critical work you might perform on your MacBook.

Looking at the ports, there’s a single mini HDMI and two USB-C ports, both of which support DP Alt mode and 40W USB Power Delivery. All three ports are located on the stand, along with the four large navigation buttons.

The selling package includes a USB Type-C-to-C, a USB Type-C-to-A, and a micro HDMI-to-HDMI cable, so you should be covered no matter which video port you use. ViewSonic also includes a removable monitor hood that does a good job blocking ambient light.

The OLED panel is Pantone-validated and covers 100% of the DCI-P3 and about 98% of the Adobe RGB color space. The panel has superb motion performance and a maximum brightness of about 400 nits. Our only nitpick is the panel’s less-than-stellar factory calibration.

While the VP16-OLED isn’t the king of portability due to its massive stand, it offers one of the best portable monitor experiences on the market thanks to that stand, which supports tilt and height adjustment. Fortunately, the built-in stand doesn’t weigh too much, nor makes the VP16-OLED unwieldy, since the monitor is only 0.8-inch thick and weighs 2 pounds.

Aside from less-than-ideal portability and less-than-perfect factory color calibration, the ViewSonic VP16-OLED also sports a relatively high price for a portable 1080p monitor. If you need something more portable, check our best overall pick, especially our 13.3-inch alternative recommendation at the bottom of that section. They both work great with MacBooks.

ViewSonic VP16-OLED (1)
ViewSonic VP16-OLED

Best Portable Monitor for MacBooks

$350 $400 Save $50

MacBook owners in the market for a new portable monitor should look no further than the ViewSonic VP16-OLED. This portable monitor is a fantastic choice for any type of work, including photo and video editing. The built-in kickstand supports tilt and height adjustment, and the monitor also comes with a removable hood. 

ASUS ROG Strix portable monitor mockup
ASUS

Pros

Cons

✓ Excellent build quality

✗ Low brightness to overcome glare

✓ High refresh rate and fast response time

✗ No HDR support

✓ Built-in battery

✓ GamePlus feature

If you plan to game on the go, there is no better portable monitor than the ASUS ROG Strix XG17AHPE. Its 17.3-inch full HD screen is larger than most portable monitors and features a 240Hz refresh rate, excellent response time, low input lag, and support for adaptive sync. You also get a built-in 7,800mAh battery for your gaming sessions.

The screen is excellent, and the colors look vibrant and saturated. Text clarity and viewing angles are also good. So whether you are gaming, web browsing, or watching videos, the monitor’s performance will be fantastic.

ASUS combines the ROG Strix XG17AHPE with a smart cover that protects it during transport and acts as a stand. You can use it to prop up the monitor in portrait and landscape modes. This ROG monitor can also detect the orientation and auto-rotate the source, but this feature only works on Windows.

You get two input ports with the XG17AHPE—one Micro-HDMI and one USB Type-C. These will provide seamless connectivity with most gaming laptops on the market. There is another port for a USB-C cable on board, but it only supports charging.

Among other features, ASUS has packed stereo speakers that sound great for a portable monitor. A GamePlus feature also shows an FPS counter, timer, and crosshair to help while gaming.

While the ASUS ROG Strix XG17 shines on many fronts, it’s not perfect. For example, there is no HDR support, and the monitor isn’t bright enough to overcome glare in well-lit areas. Still, you can’t do better than this if you want to game with a portable monitor.

asus rog portable monitor
ASUS ROG Strix XG17AHPE

Best Portable Gaming Monitor

$441 $469 Save $28

There are very few portable monitors that are great at gaming, and the Asus ROG Strix XG17AHPE sits at the very top. It has everything you need in a gaming monitor.

Best Portable Touchscreen Monitor: ViewSonic TD1655

Person talking with a ViewSonic portable monitor
ViewSonic

Pros

Cons

✓ Full touch support on macOS and Windows

✗ Low brightness to combat glare

✓ Responsive touchscreen

✗ Narrow color gamut

✓ Crisp images and text

✓ Good viewing angles

The ViewSonic TD1655 is an excellent portable touchscreen monitor with a 15.6-inch full-HD screen with 10-point multitouch support. While many portable touchscreen monitors on the market don’t work with macOS, need expensive third-party drivers, or provide limited support, the TD1655 can be used with both Windows and macOS. The latter requires additional driver installation, but you get complete touch and multitouch support in the end.

The touchscreen is the highlight of the monitor, and you can control it using your fingers or the bundled stylus. In addition, it feels very responsive whether you are navigating through menus or drawing using the stylus.

ViewSonic’s screen is also decent, and the images and text look clear. Unfortunately, it doesn’t get very bright and may have issues tackling glare in well-lit rooms. However, thanks to its IPS panel, the viewing angles are relatively good.

It’s also lightweight at 2.2 pounds (though a bit heavier than most of our other recommendations), making it excellent for transport. Moreover, it comes with a built-in stand that supports 0 to 60-degree tilt.

Inputs include two USB Type-C ports and a mini-HDMI port. While one of the Type-C ports can only receive display and audio signals, the other can also accept or deliver up to 60W of power, which should be enough to charge most laptops.

ViewSonic has packed a mini-joystick controller on the back of the monitor to navigate the display settings, and it’s pretty easy to use. In addition, many display options allow you to adjust color settings, image settings, audio options, view mode, and more. Two speakers on board will also come in handy in certain situations.

If you don’t want to go through the additional setup required on Macs for touch input but still need a portable touchscreen monitor, you can use Mac’s Sidecar feature and an iPad as the secondary display. It is one of the easiest ways to add a secondary touch-capable monitor to your Mac.

viewsonic portable monitor
ViewSonic TD1655

Best Portable Touchscreen Monitor

$250 $270 Save $20

The ViewSonic TD1655’s touchscreen is not only compatible with both macOS and Windows, but it’s also incredibly responsive.

viewsonic vx1655-4k-oled against a grey background
ViewSonic

Pros

Cons

✓ Ultra-sharp 4K OLED panel

✗ Expensive

✓ Superb picture quality and Retina-level pixel density

✗ Limited to 60Hz refresh rate

✓ Great for photo and video editing

✓ Highly portable for a 15.6-inch portable monitor

✓ Features a versatile, high-quality built-in kickstand

Those who embarked on a quest to find the ultimate 4K portable monitor experience should look no further than the ViewSonic VX1655-4K-OLED. This is an impressive mobile display sporting an ultra-sharp 4K OLED panel with a pixel density of 282 DPI, which comes close to Retina-level pixel density.

The OLED panel offers 4K resolution, superb motion performance, 400 nits of peak brightness, and a 60Hz refresh rate. Aside from regular work scenarios, we recommend this monitor for color-critical work because it comes with a 10-bit color space, thus providing full coverage of the sRGB and DCI-P3 color spaces.

The VX1655-4K-OLED is also an excellent choice for frequent travelers who demand ultra-crisp images from their portable monitor due to its weight of only 1.5 pounds and 0.6 inches of thickness. The monitor itself is thinner than 0.6 inches, with the built-in kickstand being the main perpetrator behind the extra bulkiness because it hosts the two USB-C ports with DP Alt support, one mini HDMI port, a headphone jack, and an easy-to-use joystick for navigating around the settings menu.

The kickstand supports tilt angles from 15° to 43° and looks sturdy. Aside from the kickstand, the ViewSonic VX1655-4K-OLED also comes with a quality-looking protective cover, one mini HDMI, one USB-C to USB-C cable, and a power cable. The only major downside is the price since the monitor retails at $499. That said, you can often find it selling for about $450 or less when it is on sale.

viewsonic vx1655-4k-oled (1)
ViewSonic VX1655 4K OLED

Best 4K Portable Monitor

$429 $500 Save $71

The ViewSonic VX1655 4K OLED is the ultimate 4K portable monitor well-suited for every type of challenge you might throw at it, aside from gaming.


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