Toshiba unfolds a second monitor to go

Toshiba unfolds a second monitor to go

Summary: I am a firm believer in using a second monitor at the desk, and this is the thing I miss most when I travel and leave it behind. Toshiba aims to rectify that with a portable monitor that plays second fiddle to most laptops.

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TOPICS: Hardware, Toshiba
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Like many, I am totally addicted to having multiple monitors at my desktop. That second monitor is the thing I miss most when I travel and leave it behind. Toshiba aims to rectify that with a portable monitor that plays second fiddle to most laptops.

The PA3923U-1LC3 is a 14-inch monitor that connects to any Windows PC via the USB port. The display folds into a compact form for transport, and forms a second monitor for such systems running a decent 1366x768 resolution. The suggested retail price of $199 means you must have a real need to justify it, but those with such a need should be all over this display. The 2.8 pound weight will factor into the decision to carry this in addition to a laptop.

I would never carry such a monitor to the coffee shop on a daily basis, but it might be a good fit for trips when a second display would make things easier. I have been known to use the iPad with Air Display for such trips, which works well enough for me.

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Topics: Hardware, Toshiba

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18 comments
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  • RE: Toshiba unfolds a second monitor to go

    For those of us without iPads, this seems like a pretty slick option. I would definitely consider it, especially because at home right now I do not have a second monitor at all. My wife and I keep considering getting a second monitor, but haven't as of yet. I could see us getting this to use both as a second monitor in our home office and as a portable second monitor when needed.
    jglopic
    • Sooner or later, all cell phones will have desktop software and support

      large monitors. This is a lot cheaper than the Motorola docking notebook. Add a folding keyboard, and there you have it.
      DonnieBoy
      • RE: Toshiba unfolds a second monitor to go

        @DonnieBoy

        However, this product is available now. I wouldn't buy one for all my laptop users, but I am seriously considering keeping two or three of these things around for borrowing when necessary. At this price, if I can get three years use out of them this is a bargain if I ever saw one.
        Michael Kelly
  • My two cents worth. (Really, that's all its worth. Grin!)

    We share similar wants and desires when it comes to our choices in computer hardware. A dual desktop monitor system used to be a luxury but with the not-so-recent price drop in LCD large screen monitors, this type of home computer environment can be easily enjoyed by most consumers today. (I've enjoyed those benefits for the past four years myself.)

    Actually, while surfing the tech sites yesterday, I came across a description of this Toshiba display and was intrigued enough to follow an embedded article link to Toshiba's home product website. Apparently, it uses a USB connection to supply power to the display from the host computer (better have a large capacity mobile battery handy) And, Toshiba only mentions compatibility with Windows systems.

    But, you also mentioned an iPad being used as a secondary display. Not surprisingly, I've experimented with that arrangement via the previously mentioned Air Display app. This arrangement works rather well if the intent is only to use the iPad screen to display static images. But since Air Display requires a WiFi signal to work its magic, it does not supply a universal solution for a dual display mobile setup. (Although available WiFi can often be found on most business trips, it is not a sure thing for other locations.)

    Of course, the real issue is weight when mobile computing is discussed. (Less weight, the better .. much better) Personally, I have a MacBook and an iPad 1 (combined weight is six pounds: 4.7 lbs and 1.3 lbs, respectively) And, I've used those two in combination on trips in the past. The weight is manageable for this combo (but really pushing the mobile weight ceiling, so to speak)

    I've since ordered the second generation iPad and I was thinking about the MacBook Air 11" model. (A friend has that MacBook Air computer and I really like the performance and form factor of this model) This combo might prove ideal for a road warrior since the total weight for these two computers would be even less than my MacBook alone! (combined weight: 3.6 lbs: 2.3 lbs and 1.3 lbs for the MBA and iPad2, respectively) BTW, I tried out Air Display using this combination and the results were excellent. (I hated to give back the MBA to my friend!)

    Throw in a HDMI cable and a few adapters and any available HDTV could act as a very large display on the road for both mobile devices.
    kenosha77a
    • Yeah, I would prefer an all Apple solution too

      @kenosha7777
      I'm really impressed with your arsenal of Apple products. iPad 1, iPad 2, MacBook, MacBook Air. SWEET!!

      I'm kind of reminded of the song: "Anything you can do I can do better" but in the context of your post it is more like "Anything Microsoft can do Apple can do better". Keep coming up with ways that an all Apple solution kicks butt over anything else out there! I look forward to reading your next well thought out post.
      edtimes
      • RE: Toshiba unfolds a second monitor to go

        @edtimes
        Thanks. I didn't mention that last year I purchased the top of the line BTO iMac 27" core i7 model and paired it with a Samsung 24" secondary monitor. With the SSD and the additional (non-Apple) 16 gb of installed memory, this dream system replaced my still functional 20" PPC iMac as my desktop unit. You might as well throw in an Apple TV2 and a few iPods to round out the home Apple ecosystem. ( It helps being retired with a nice income. Grin)

        BTW, I don't have an MBA yet. We have to leave something for next year. I'm waiting for the MBA Sandy Bridge CPU model with Thunderbolt tech.
        kenosha77a
  • For what it is worth ...

    I spend 95% of my time using my "desktop" machine (actually, a rather large Cooler Master CM Comose 1000 tower), with a 22"W HP center monitor, flanked by two Envision EN9250 19" monitors, and off to one side, just to hold my program shortcut icons, a smaller 15" monitor. Altogether a very productive system. And when I'm forced to use my Samsung laptop in my home location, I flank it with a pair of 17" monitors. Of course, the product you talk about sounds like an outstanding solution for those who must travel ... fortunately, for me that is a rare experience!
    websquad
  • RE: Toshiba unfolds a second monitor to go

    I like it (and the idea) but right now, for my work, 14 inch would be a bit too small for me. > 17 inch (and preferably a 22' ) would be something I would be to quite open to buying.
    duplai@...
    • RE: Toshiba unfolds a second monitor to go

      @duplai@...

      I agree, however I cannot blame Toshiba for not being willing to take the gamble on larger models for the first generation.
      Michael Kelly
    • RE: Toshiba unfolds a second monitor to go

      @duplai@... my only problem with the larger "(and preferably a 22')" would be a question of how the heck are you gonna carry the thing around? certainly wouldn't fit in my laptop bag (which would be a requirement for this being "road warrior" certified)

      (and yes, I know you meant 22" not 22')
      gavin142
  • RE: Toshiba unfolds a second monitor to go

    200 bucks for a 14" monitor isn't even close to a bargain. I just moved my old monitor to secondary position replacing it with a 23" for primary. The cost - less then $170 delivered, and it runs 1980x1080 resolution. Granted it isn't portable but you would think that for half that price you could get a portable 14" monitor. Toshiba needs to go back to the drawing board.
    shanedr
    • RE: Toshiba unfolds a second monitor to go

      @shanedr Remember that this is a 14" portable monitor that can connect to a computer via USB and be powered over the USB cable (no power connection required). Should it cost $200? Probably not. Is there any competition out there for similar monitors? Nope. Toshiba can price this however they want, and even at the inflated price, I would consider it.
      jglopic
  • RE: Toshiba unfolds a second monitor to go

    http://www.google.com/products/catalog?q=portable+projector&hl=en&prmd=ivns&biw=1600&bih=1017&bav=on.2,or.r_gc.r_pw.&um=1&ie=UTF-8&cid=14727249710973160727&sa=X&ei=HWmKTY7EHqWY0QH39_2JDg&ved=0CMcBEPMCMAg#
    sfaid
  • USB? Only Windows?

    Cool idea, but it would make more sense if it had a standard HDMI connection so that you could also use it with other devices, like smart phones or tablets that run something other than Windows.
    Bit-Smacker
  • 3 FTW

    tried 2 monitors ... not very ergonomic when think about it... i like to be central to my equipment which means you are looking at a gap in your screens the whole time or alternativly you are bending your neck one way the whole time .. go for 3 its even and incredibly much more immersive and handy ... photoshop supports 2 ... the 3rd for flicking between files... gpedit polices under admin on one user account checking on 2nd and following guide on 3rd
    makes much more sense :)
    trojan@...
  • RE: Toshiba unfolds a second monitor to go

    Nice option who don't use Apple products for ethical reasons.
    tshinder@...
    • Ethics can be a two edged sword

      @tshinder@...

      You probably recall a 1987 incident involving Toshiba and the security of the United States. Those were amazing times. In case you forgotten, an internet search will reveal the details but this incident is summarized by a Wikipedia article on the subject.

      "... In 1987, Tocibai Machine, a subsidiary of Toshiba, was accused of illegally selling CNC milling machines used to produce very quiet submarine propellers to the Soviet Union in violation of the CoCom agreement, an international embargo on certain countries to COMECON countries. The Toshiba-Kongsberg scandal involved a subsidiary of Toshiba and the Norwegian company Kongsberg Vaapenfabrikk. The incident strained relations between the United States and Japan, and resulted in the arrest and prosecution of two senior executives, as well as the imposition of sanctions on the company by both countries.[4] The US had always relied on the fact that the Soviets had noisy boats, so technology that would make the USSR's submarines harder to detect created a significant threat to America's security. Senator John Heinz of Pennsylvania said "What Toshiba and Kongsberg did was ransom the security of the United States for $517 million."

      Of course, my point is that actions by certain individuals can taint the reputation of a whole Corporation composed of honorable individuals. That statement is true for Toshiba as it is for Apple.
      kenosha77a
    • RE: Toshiba unfolds a second monitor to go

      @tshinder@... Both of you?
      jpdemers@...