Everybody needs a sidekick. Even your laptop. Let’s say you’re on the road and like using a second screen. Maybe you have too many files that you need open at once…maybe your presentation demands something a little bigger than your slim little laptop can muster. That’s where something like the HP U160 comes into play. This is essentially a flip-up 15.6 inch LED backlit display.
Now, I haven’t had a ton of play-time with this guy – but I can give you a couple quick observations after seeing it recently.
I really like how it comes in a simple folio format. In fact, it will take you seconds to get this thing open, propped-up and ready-to-use.
One-plug use! All you need is an open USB port on your computer and you’re good-to-go.
You get a good 180-nit, 1366 by 768 resolution Twisted Nematic (TN) panel.
It’s a portable 3.4-pound monitor. Think of it as an extra laptop screen-a-go-go without the excess hardware to lug around.
I don’t have a breakdown of how much of a power drain it’d be on a laptop’s batteries, but the HP U160 only draws 5 Watts of power.
A couple things that you’ll need to bear in mind for the U160:
This panel was intended for commercial use and extending your desktop, not for mainstream consumer use. That said, I would love to try using this for editing video. Have your main laptop screen showing the picture, but leave the controls and menus on the U160.
Because of the power draw required for the U160 to work, don’t try plugging into an ElitePad 900 or the ENVY x2. I know, the allure of going super-light with your PC and plugging into a big screen sounds good. However, the U160 still requires a little more juice to run (like I said above, 5 Watts). There obviously are many types of computers and we cannot specify how much power their USB ports provide. While many computers may power the U160 with a single USB port, connecting the Y cable to two USB ports is recommended.
It’s got a 90-degree viewing angle. So if you’re showing off that screen to a couple people, no problem, but as your audience grows….well, it’s just something to keep in mind.
When I do get my hands on a final unit, come on back because I’ll be happy to give you a deeper dive on what the deal is with the HP U160. (Available in Jan. 2013 for $179.)