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Battery Life And Conclusion

GeChic On-Lap 2501M 15.6" Battery-Powered Monitor, Tested
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Battery Life

To test the battery life, we’re using the same parameters as GeChic’s spec sheet. The brightness is turned up to maximum and the speaker volume is set to 10. Content is fed via HDMI from a standard Blu-ray player, allowing us to simply loop a movie until the battery is completely drained. The panel is fully charged, of course, and the test starts promptly after we unplug the charger.

The On-Lap 2501M manages to handily exceed GeChic's specification in our testing. At seven hours and twelve minutes, the low-battery indicator came on and we called it quits. At this stage, the On-Lap automatically lowers its brightness and audio volume to stretch the battery as long as possible. Since this is more than an hour longer than we were expecting, we're satisfied with the result. You can extend the battery by not using the speakers at all, or by turning down the brightness.

An Interesting Product, In The Right Context

The On-Lap 2501M is a unique product. While it doesn’t knock our socks off in terms of performance, there really isn’t anything else like it out there. What the On-Lap has going for it is excellent battery life and a thin, lightweight form factor. You can easily carry the thing with you in a laptop bag or backpack. And, with a full set of cables included, it can be used with a wide variety of sources right out-of-the-box. The On-Lap is one of those products that you buy for one reason, but then discover a half-dozen other uses for it.

Then again, for $270, it might make more sense to consider a few other portable products, such as a $250 Chromebook. And there’s no escaping the fact that desktop monitors of this size sell for less than $150. Plus, you'll need to decide whether tethering a smartphone or tablet to another device is even practical when integrated solutions exist.

That's not to say this product is without merit; it's just marketed all wrong. Since the On-Lap lacks a touchscreen, you aren't actually turning your smartphone into a large tablet. You still need control everything from your source device. And seeing as how GeChic prices the 2501M higher than some of last year's most popular 7" tablets sell for, it's simply a hard sell in the consumer space.

Busy professionals, on the other hand, can justifiably benefit from this product. Let's say you're a road warrior, and you want to fully utilize that desk in your hotel room. Using the On-Lap, you can add a second 15.6" screen to your laptop's display and create a mobile multi-monitor configuration. After all, the On-Lap is certainly more portable than any desktop monitor. This could have come in handy for those of us who stayed up late writing CES coverage this year in our hotel rooms, flipping between Word, Excel, Outlook, Skype, and Firefox. Additionally, a wide variety of ports and an integrated battery pack make the On-Lap an extremely portable display for mobile PC techs troubleshooting no-video issues.

So, in the right situations, GeChic's On-Lap can be a useful complement to your mobile arsenal. But at $270, it's hardly a gadget accessory.

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  • 0 Hide
    mayankleoboy1 , March 27, 2013 10:18 PM
    So even though the hardware itself is excellent, the final product is too niche-y to sell ?
  • 4 Hide
    slomo4sho , March 28, 2013 12:13 AM
    A portable monitor at the conveniently low price of an entry level tablet or chromebook... I see real utility here.
  • 1 Hide
    Fulgurant , March 28, 2013 12:56 AM
    I might be interested in something like this at some point. Nice review.
  • 0 Hide
    Senor Kalyan , March 28, 2013 3:30 AM
    http://us.aoc.com/monitor_displays/e2251fwu
  • 1 Hide
    warezme , March 28, 2013 7:10 AM
    It is an industry artificial block in my opinion. All they would have to do is include a little extra circuitry to the existing pads for an HDMI input and viola, you could use your pad as a monitor to another device. Most pads have at least that resolution on some even better. I would never buy this item unless it was under $150 or less. It is a one trick pony with a low resolution screen.
  • 4 Hide
    groundhogdaze , March 28, 2013 7:57 AM
    I'd love to have one of these portable monitors. I've go a bunch of headless PC's that I need to check every once in a while and don't want to lug a regular monitor around nor hunt for a power socket for the test monitor. If only the price were a little lower...
  • 1 Hide
    Fulgurant , March 28, 2013 8:56 AM
    warezmeIt is an industry artificial block in my opinion. All they would have to do is include a little extra circuitry to the existing pads for an HDMI input and viola, you could use your pad as a monitor to another device. Most pads have at least that resolution on some even better. I would never buy this item unless it was under $150 or less. It is a one trick pony with a low resolution screen.

    I don't disagree that tablets could easily include an input, but to be fair, this product is far bigger than a tablet. It may only have a niche use, but it is clearly better suited for that niche use than a tablet screen would be.
  • 1 Hide
    Fulgurant , March 28, 2013 9:59 AM
    FulgurantI don't disagree that tablets could easily include an input, but to be fair, this product is far bigger than a tablet. It may only have a niche use, but it is clearly better suited for that niche use than a tablet screen would be.

    Come to think of it, laptops should include inputs too -- but to my knowledge, they never have.
  • 0 Hide
    g00fysmiley , March 28, 2013 11:57 AM
    interesting concept but would be nice if bluetooth connectivity wee there unless i am missing somethign it s hdmi only. touchscereen i know is pricier but again would add to utility. interesting product just as it is looks very limited
  • 1 Hide
    RedJaron , March 28, 2013 3:55 PM
    Senor Kalyanhttp://us.aoc.com/monitor_displays/e2251fwu

    Nice product, except it doesn't have its own power supply and can only take a USB signal over a DisplayLink driver. Makes for a nice quasi-mobile secondary monitor for computers, but it won't connect to most types of mobile devices like the GeChic will.
  • 0 Hide
    shadowfamicom , March 29, 2013 7:50 AM
    Their USB powered HDMI monitor is really well made. I have one I use for when I want to grab one of my booksized PC's or my Mac Mini and take it on the road. It is also really great for testing hardware or with consoles. And adding a separate battery pack that has two USB ports lets me use it with a Raspberry Pi on the go. It is meant to be used to add dual monitor support to your notebook (even comes with metal brackets).

  • 1 Hide
    shadowfamicom , March 29, 2013 7:52 AM
    shadowfamicomTheir USB powered HDMI monitor is really well made. I have one I use for when I want to grab one of my booksized PC's or my Mac Mini and take it on the road. It is also really great for testing hardware or with consoles. And adding a separate battery pack that has two USB ports lets me use it with a Raspberry Pi on the go. It is meant to be used to add dual monitor support to your notebook (even comes with metal brackets).


    Forgot the link to the one I was talking about which is 13.3 inches

    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=9SIA0V108S5365
  • 1 Hide
    ashburner , March 29, 2013 9:01 PM
    I use a 1.99 app called iDisplay. Only works over wifi though with my 3rd gen iPad. It works well.
  • 2 Hide
    occupant , April 3, 2013 6:29 AM
    Reminds me of the Lenovo LT1423, a $350-$400 touchscreen introduced in January at CES2013, which would actually be useful for me since it matches my laptop's 1600x900 resolution. I don't need wireless connectivity or BlueTooth or a ton of features, or even a touchscreen. Somebody package a 1600x900 17 inch laptop screen in a nice aluminum enclosure with a kickstand, and make it thin enough to accompany my laptop in its backpack, and I'd happily pay $300 for it. Dual displays are pretty much required for the work I do, and the typical 27-32 inch TV in many hotel rooms isn't exactly an ideal second display. Toting around a 2 inch thick $69 refurbished 20 inch Acer V203H has been my solution and it doesn't exactly fit in my laptop bag, even if I remove the stand and carry it separately or in my other bags. At least it is 1600x900.
  • 0 Hide
    Some_guy_said , April 10, 2013 1:58 PM
    mayankleoboy1So even though the hardware itself is excellent, the final product is too niche-y to sell ?


    Absolutely.

    You can get a 9 inch IPS TOUCH screen at 1900x1200 resolution, speakers, Weighs only 1.2 pounds and lasts for 8 hours on a charge.

    For $20 more...$270.
    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B008GFRE5A/ref=asc_df_B008GFRE5A?tag=hyprod-20&hvpos=1o2&hvexid=&hvnetw=g&hvrand=1878467891549516394&hvpone=

    And it comes with a tablet included at no extra charge.
  • 0 Hide
    Hadit , April 19, 2013 8:39 AM
    Sorry for a possibly dumb question, but I assume the HDMI connection is only important for videos. I just want a good display for static camera shots that I can paint from. Need good color and resolution.