Research has long shown that using multiple computer monitors can considerably improves your productivity, but the relentless slide of the world towards mobility has complicated this calculation. For the most part, a multi-monitor setup usually means being strapped to a desk and a phalanx of equipment. Those who try to work remotely – or, especially this year, at the kitchen table – have largely resigned themselves to squinting at a tiny laptop screen.
The sadly named Vissles presents a surprisingly compelling and simple solution: a portable 15.6-inch touchscreen that can double as a secondary display, anywhere.
Conceptually, the Vissles-M looks and acts a lot like an oversized tablet. The 1.4-pound device is just 10 millimeters thick at its thickest point along the bottom edge, where your fingers will find a variety of connector ports and some basic controls, including a volume rocker. . Ideally, the best way to set it up is to use a USB-C connection if your laptop has one. If your laptop has only one USB-C port, and / or if you need this port to charge the laptop, you can simply daisy-chain your AC adapter through a second USB-C port on the Vissles-M, which will supply power to both the external monitor and your laptop.
Got an older machine without USB-C? The Vissles-M also includes a mini HDMI port which can allow you to whip up a solution with a pair of cables that connect using it and a USB-C to USB-A cable. (All of these cables are included, by the way.)
From the moment I connected its USB-C cable to my Windows 10 laptop, the Vissles-M immediately sprang to life, working (almost) exactly as expected. The only issue I encountered was that, out of the box, the touchscreen functionality on the screen was not working, but it turned out to be a simple Windows setup issue that was easily fixed. In fact, the biggest challenge I had while working with the unit was dealing with the awkward screen cover, a plastic magnetic backrest that folds back to serve as a kickstand. It is not a very elegant solution and it can be difficult to maneuver in a busy desk.
Otherwise, the device is a dream. The 1920 x 1080-pixel touchscreen is responsive, colors are vivid, and while the unit isn’t particularly bright, it’s suitable for a secondary display. And since it’s so slender, it can easily fit alongside a laptop in your backpack, adding little extra bulk.
While Windows 10 users are the primary target here, the Vissles-M can also connect to a variety of other devices, including macOS and Windows 7 laptops, iPad Pro, Nintendo Switch, various consoles. games and a variety of Android phones. You’ll want to pay close attention to the wiring instructions in the Slim manual if you try any of these connections, and note that for many of these devices, touch functionality is not supported. (A few more quirks exist; for example, on the iPad, the Vissles can only function as a mirrored screen.)
It’s not perfect – the built-in speakers, a pair of 1-watt speakers, are woefully weak – but I didn’t even mention the best part of the Vissles-M: at just over $ 200. , it’s a steal for a versatile and capable device that will immediately make you rethink everything you thought you knew about laptop productivity. I love this.