Is this the best piece of tech for students? When I was 12 years old, I got my first ever laptop that was like entirely my own. I had to persuade my parents a lot for it and I got it on one condition that we had to give away our old desktop to somebody that needed it more. However, I could keep the monitor if I wanted to. And I decided to just keep the monitor. One day, I plugged the monitor into my laptop out of curiosity to see what would happen. And that's when I realized that laptops can actually have an external display. So, you can have two screens. At the same time, I basically experienced a dual monitor set up for the first time in my life, I realized how amazing it was that I could like drag things from one screen to another and then back and then use the second screen to put things that I could reference while working on the first screen. Basically, I was hooked, I couldn't use my laptop without a second screen anymore. For so many years, I continued to use a dual monitor set up all the way from when I was in school, living at home to, when I went to college in Manal, I always had a dual monitor set up. But when I came to France in 2018 to study at HEC Paris, I decided to let go of my second monitor because I knew that I would be moving around a lot the next few years and it would be really annoying to have to find a place to store it or like it around with me in my luggage because, you know, monitors are heavy. I remember in my first year at G C I realized that I was really missing my second monitor because I don't know if it's a good thing or not. But like, it didn't make me feel as if I was being productive enough and I just had one little screen to work on. I really missed it, but I didn't know any solution other than buying another monitor, which was going to be big and heavy and then having to sell it and it's like a whole thing. So, yeah, for many years, I really missed having another display, but I didn't know any solution. I even tried using an iPad Pro as an external display, which was pretty nice, but the iPad screen is pretty small and so it didn't really help things a lot. So, yeah, I had no idea what to do about this until a few months ago. This company called U Perfect, reached out to me and offered to send me one of their portable external monitors. The cool thing about this is that these are thin, these are light, they are not heavy, they're easy to carry around. And I'd seen a lot of people using these at coffee shops and at airports, but I never really had the opportunity to try one myself. So yeah, I was super excited. The big question was, was this going to solve all of my monitor problems while traveling? Another big question was, would I have benefited from this monitor when I was a student? Long story short? Yes, for both of these questions, I definitely wish I had one of these when I was a student and there's one specific feature of this monitor that really makes it for me full disclosure. This is not a sponsored blog, but UPERFECT did send me the monitor for free in exchange for my thoughts in this video.
So, they've actually got a bunch of different external monitors available. But the one I got was a 4K 17-inch external monitor. Both the resolution as well as the size are perfect for my workflow. As a video editor and video creator having a 4K monitor makes it really nice for me to actually preview my videos in 4K when I'm editing.
Even otherwise, while using it, it basically looks like a retina display, which is what I'm used to on my MacBook as well as my iPhone. I think anything smaller than 17 inches would have been a little too small for me.
Carrying UPERFECT Monitor
The trade off here is that it makes it a little hard for me to put it into a backpack. So, every time I have to carry it around with me in the city, I have to put it into a little tote bag, but this isn't really an issue when I'm traveling because when I'm traveling, I basically just put it into a suitcase and it's thin and light so it doesn't really occupy my space.
The monitor also comes along with this folio cover which is similar to those iPad style covers that you've seen and just like an iPad, it protects the screen and also allows you to prop it up when you want to use it.
A really cool addition to this monitor is that it has visa mounting screws on the, if you don't know what they are, they basically allow you to attach the monitor to any standard monitor, standard monitor arm. And so that's exactly what I've done when I use it on my desk at home. It makes it way more versatile because not only can you use it as a portable external monitor, you can also use it as like a semi-permanent or even a permanent monitor on your desk setup. I got this monitor arm from Amazon and it allows me to prop up my monitor at the right spot as well as allowing me to rotate it between horizontal and vertical, which is super, super cool. A lot of times I use the monitor in vertical orientation because I just put things like WhatsApp and Slack on that monitor so that I can constantly monitor instant messages coming in when I'm working. which is particularly useful when I'm working at home without it being like too into my face with the main monitor. So honestly, I think it's really great for that too.
Why I like this Monitor
There's one feature that I mentioned in the beginning that really, really makes the monitor for me. And that feature is that I can plug in this monitor to my laptop or even my Mac mini with one single USB C cable. And the best part is that one cable is able to connect my laptop to the monitor and also power the monitor. So, I don't need to have an external power supply for this monitor. This means that if I'm using it outside or if I'm using it at a desk with my laptop, I can basically just power it with my laptop's battery. And I think that is so incredible. That's what really makes it super different from any other monitor that you would just buy. Because not only is it like thin and light and portable, you can also just plug and play just like plug it into your laptop, it powers the monitor and transfers the video. I think that's like incredible. But yeah, obviously you should keep in mind that if you're powering the monitor with your laptop's battery, it's gonna drain the laptop battery more quickly than like otherwise because it's a 4K external display. So, it's, definitely a battery drain, but it's still super useful to have that option, especially if I know I'm just gonna be working for one or two hours.
Ports and Plugin
However, there is a solution to that two, the monitor actually has two USB C ports. One of them can be used to connect to the laptop to transfer video. And the second one can be used to connect to a power supply. So, you can basically connect your laptop power supply to the monitor with one of the USB C ports and then plug the monitor to the laptop with another USB C port. And that way one single power supply will power both your monitor as well as charge your laptop, the monitor otherwise also has a normal standard H D M I port. You can plug in an Xbox or a PS4 or PS5 or whatever and like play games on that too. otherwise, even if your laptop doesn't have a USB C port, you can still connect it with like normal HDMI. So that's pretty cool. I was actually super surprised, very pleasantly because all these cables, an HDMI cable, two USB-C cables as well as even a power adapter. All that stuff came in the box of the monitor. So, I didn't have to go out and buy more cables just to be able to use it. That was pretty awesome.
The monitor is built really, really nicely. It's made of brush metal. It feels super durable and I've actually taken it with me on multiple different trips already. I've put it in checked luggage all the way from France to India and back. I've taken it with me as a carry on. I've taken it on a trip within France. I've traveled around India with it and yeah, it, it's held up so far. The design is pretty industrial and it's even got this little hole at the bottom, which I'm not exactly sure what that's for. You could probably use it to hang up the monitor somewhere from a hook or you could poke a stick or a pen through it and use that as a stand.
The quality of the screen, as I mentioned before is fantastic. It pairs really well with my MacBook Air M two. The colors are slightly saturated. It's not a huge problem for me, but it's just still something to keep in mind. This screen also has a matte finish, which is really nice because when you're using it outdoors, you don't really get that much of the glare and reflection. So that's pretty cool. And the screen is also sufficiently bright, actually, probably more than sufficiently bright in most conditions. I've been using this monitor for the last three months, four months or so. And I've really been enjoying watching videos on it, reading text on it and using it as a second display, not just for my laptop, but also for my desktop on my desk.
In my opinion, if you are looking for an external portable monitor, especially while you're a student and you might be moving around here and there and you're going to be working from cafes, different libraries on your college campus, maybe even taking it with you to class and being like that cool guy or girl. I honestly think this is a really great option and once you settle down a bit and you want something a little bit more semi-permanent, the visa mounting screws will allow you to use it on your desk. Again. The fact that I can power everything with one single cable, I think that's really a huge selling point for me. The monitor however, is not exactly cheap at €450. But that's also because I got the 4K version and maybe not everyone needs like such high resolution. So, if you're on a budget, you can also consider the two K option or even just good old full HD, both of which are cheaper and UPERFECT has all these monitors. On the other hand, if you have even more money to spend, UPERFECT. Also has options that have a touch screen. I think there's even one that they have, which has a battery and they have an OLED panel as well. So yeah, what I found is that they do really have different things for different budgets and different needs. So, that's pretty awesome. You can check out the link to this specific monitor in the description below and you can also just check out UPERFECT website to go check out other monitors that they might have, which may better suit your budget or your need.