SOLO PRO HD 15.8” Portable Monitor
The SOLO PRO HD 15.8” Portable Monitor is a very easy way to have a full workstation - even when you work remotely. It's easy to connect with minimal cable support and has controls to adjust monitor output settings, too. The SideTrak monitor is lightweight and very portable. It has a comparable price to other stationary monitors and because of its portability - the price seems reasonable.
- EASE OF USE
A portable monitor creates a workstation anywhere you are.
Working remotely can be a pain – especially if you are used to using multiple monitors as a part of your standard workstation. Fortunately, there are options available for adding a portable second monitor to your remote set-up, and one of them is the SideTrak SOLO PRO HD 15.8” Portable Monitor.
The SideTrak SOLO PRO HD 15.8” is a freestanding portable monitor designed to boost productivity from anywhere. The 15.8” screen provides full 1080p HD resolution on an anti-glare LED display. It features HDR & FreeSync for an amazing streaming experience and it provides a wide color gamut on an 8-bit color display. The portable monitor is lightweight, durable, and easily connected. It has ultra-thin bezels and a matte finish that keeps it looking slim and sleek. The monitor has inline controls to adjust brightness, volume, and other display settings. The Solo HD is one of nine monitors in the Solo product line.
Dimensions & Weight
- Dimensions: 14″ x 9″ x 0.4”
- Weight: 1.2 lbs
- Screen Size: 15.8″
- Panel Type: IPS
- Display Type: LED
- Resolution: 1920×1080
- Brightness: 300 cd/m2
- Response Time: 9 ms
- Refresh Rate: 60 Hz
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Contrast Ratio: 800:1
- Power Consumption: 8W
- Operating System: Windows, Chrome, & Mac
- Ports Required: Thunderbolt USB-C or USB-A and HDMI (may require 2 cords)
- Device Size: Any
- Download: Not Required
The SOLO PRO HD 15.8” Portable Monitor came in a basic retail box. An image of the monitor is on the front of the box along with some details about the product. When you open the box, you’ll find the monitor, three cables, and a user manual.
One of the nicest things about this portable monitor is that it’s just plug-and-play. There is no special software that has to be installed for it to function properly. You just plug a cable into the monitor and the other end into your computer and you are off to the races.
The monitor comes with three cables – one (1) USB-C to USB-C, one (1) USB-C to USB-A, and one (1) HDMI to Mini-HDMI. The manual states that you should first try to use the USB-C to USB-C connection. It also says, “Some laptops may not provide enough power to the monitor. If the monitor won’t turn on, connect the USB-A to USB-C cable along with the Mini-HDMI cable.”
I was using the SideTrak monitor alongside my 2020 Macbook Air and my work computer a 16-inch 2019 MacBook Pro, which has USB-C/Thunderbolt ports on it. So, connecting using the USB-C to USB-C cable was no problem. The ports on the monitor are on the side of the stand.
When I plugged the monitor in, it automatically came on and started acting as my laptop’s second monitor without any manual programming from my end. I opened up System Preferences just to see how the SideTrak was configured. The only options available to me were the “Use as” setting, the Resolution, the Color Profile, and the Rotation.
When it came on, I noticed right away that the brightness was very low. On the left side of the monitor on the stand, there is a dial just above the power button. This dial is the control to access the menu of the monitor. Once you open it, adjusting it is very much like adjusting a TV’s settings. This is really the only criticism I have of the SideTrak monitor – the lack of setting controls remotely. It would be nice if the brightness could be controlled by the computer rather than a tactile control on the monitor itself. NOTE: there are third-party apps that will allow you to control the settings of the monitor but you will need to download them. My suggestion is, Monitor control lite. But DisplayBuddy might work for you as well.
Aside from that, the SideTrak Solo Monitor did an excellent job of being a second screen for my MacBook Pro. Since I had the USB-C functionality, I only had to use one cable between the two devices.
One thing that would make the connection between devices nicer is if the cable had 90-degree right angles for the plugs so that it wasn’t sticking straight out. I turned the SideTrak on its end so that it was vertical in orientation – which was really cool by the way – but it was somewhat unsightly because the USB-C plug was sticking out the top of the monitor. A right-angle cable would have clean that up a bit.
Since the resolution on the MacBook Pro’s screen is 3072 x 1920 and this Solo’s resolution is 1920 x 1080, there were some noticeable differences between the way the two screens looked and rendered visual information. With that in mind, if you are a designer or content creator, I wouldn’t use the SideTrak to judge color correction or other visual adjustments over the MacBook Pro’s screen. That said, the SideTrak is great for tools, emails, chat windows, and other types of productivity functions. In fact, it’s the best option for a portable monitor for your laptop.
At around $290 (at the time of publishing), the SideTrak Solo Pro HD 15.8” Portable Monitor is a nice investment for someone who works remotely on a frequent basis. It’s thin enough to slip into any laptop bag and with a single cable (in most cases), you can connect to a second screen with little difficulty. Having a second screen can increase productivity and having the Solo HD available is a great way to have that option.