Portable monitors come in various sizes with widely varying feature sets. Some models cater to the productive set with vivid OLED panels and others with hyperactive refresh rates, like the Nexigo NG17FGQ, that gamers seek after. But for those who just want a monitor to expand their workspace (and game on the side) at a reasonable price, this 15.6-inch entry from Arzopa deserves your attention.
The Arzopa G1 Game portable monitor offers a 1080p resolution, 144 Hz refresh rate, HDMI and USB-C connectivity, and built-in speakers. It does all this with a list price of $189.99, which is already low among portable monitors. However, the monitor currently sells for $149.99 at Amazon, and an additional $20 off coupon takes it to $129.99. The price is right, but are you getting enough bang for your buck for consideration among the best portable monitors? Let's find out.
Arzopa G1 Game Portable Monitor Specifications
|Panel Type / Backlight||IPS / WLED|
|Screen Size / Aspect Ratio||15.6 inches / 16:9|
|Max Resolution & Refresh Rate||1920 x 1080 @ 144 Hz|
|Max Brightness||300 nits|
|Ports||1x HDMI, 2x DisplayPort (USB-C Alt Mode), 3.5 mm headphone jack|
Design of the Arzopa G1 Game Portable Monitor
The G1 Game is a 15.6-inch portable monitor that is a lot lighter compared to some of its peers. This is due to its design, which lacks an integrated kickstand or an I/O base like the Asus ZenScreen MB16QHG. However, this streamlined design means the G1 Game has some glaring downsides, which I’ll discuss later in this section.
On the plus side, the G1 Game makes a good first impression. Rather than the usual plastic that proliferates throughout the portable monitor segment, the G1 Game is constructed out of aluminum alloy. That gives it a premium feel, and the chassis has very little flex. The overall feel bodes well for the durability of the G1 Game, especially for frequent travelers.
The design is rather basic, with thin bezels surrounding the sides and top of the display. A larger bezel sits below, with a thin silver accent line adding a touch of visual interest. Below the accent line is the Arzopa logo.
There’s a headphone jack, a three-way rocker switch for the OSD, and a back button for the OSD on the monitor’s right side. The left side houses the inputs, which include two USB-C ports and a full-size HDMI port.
Since the G1 Game doesn’t have a built-in way to prop up the display, you must rely on the included faux leather case, which doubles as a stand. And that’s where the problems come in. While the case protects the screen when transporting it, it is horrible as a stand.
You must flip the screen cover portion of the case backward so that the upper portion attaches magnetically to the back of the monitor. The lower half then extends slightly to prop up the monitor.
The problem is that this design only allows the monitor to sit at one fixed angle. Even worse, the contact points between the monitor and the area of the case that touches your desk are so shallow that even the lightest touch can cause the entire thing to fall over. It’s a shame because Arzopa made a conscious decision to use high-quality materials for the actual monitor. Compromising the whole effort with a shaky and non-adjustable case/stand is a huge letdown.
Image Quality and Performance of the Arzopa G1 Game Portable Monitor
The G1 Game has a 15.6-inch IPS 1080p panel with a 144 Hz refresh rate. The latter is a relatively lofty figure for a portable monitor and lives up to the “Game” in its name. Arzopa also quotes a contrast ratio of 1,000:1 and a maximum brightness of 300 nits.
Our instrumented testing showed that the G1 Game far surpassed the manufacturer’s estimate on brightness, achieving an average of 357.2 nits in Standard mode (354.2 nits in Game mode). The IPS panel covered 84.1 percent of the DCI-P3 color space and 118.7 percent of sRGB. In this grouping, the G1 bested all the other portable gaming monitors across the board, including a considerable lead in brightness.
Regarding refresh rates, the G1 Game is well above the 60Hz average for portable monitors. We recently looked at the Asus ZenScreen MB16QHG, which has a 120 Hz panel. The G1 Game ups the ante with a 144 Hz panel for on-the-go gamers. Despite the 144 Hz maximum, the G1 Game does not support Adaptive-Sync, which means that Nvidia G-Sync and AMD FreeSync compatibility is nonexistent.
Given that this is a gaming monitor, I decided to see how it handled Overwatch 2. I hooked the monitor to a Hades Canyon NUC with an Intel Core i7-8890G processor with AMD Radeon RX Vega M GH graphics.
With the graphics presets to High, I quickly hit up against the 144 Hz limit at 1080p resolution. However, I did occasionally notice some frame tearing, which is unsightly in the heat of combat. I also hooked the monitor up to my son’s Nintendo Switch OLED (using the Switch’s dock and HDMI) and did a few rounds of Mario Kart 8 Deluxe without issue.
Everyday productivity performance on the monitor was excellent. My standard daily workload involves multiple Microsoft Edge and Google Chrome windows, Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel, Slack and a photo editor. The monitor handled each easily, and the amped 144 Hz refresh rate afforded me smoother scrolling in apps but otherwise was indistinguishable from lesser monitors.
Overall, the colors for the monitor looked good, but not great. However, this is a monitor that retails for less than $200. For everyday productivity use and for gaming, the G1 Game will serve your needs just fine. However, if you’re into color-critical work, you might want to look at something like the ZenScreen MB16QHG or Zion Pro.
On-Screen Display for the Arzopa G1 Game
The G1 Game uses a three-way rocker switch to evoke and partially navigate through the on-screen display (OSD). Pushing the switch up or down translates into the respective movement through the menu system. Pressing in on the rocker will take you to the next sub-menu and finally confirm a settings choice. The separate back button will take you to the previous menu in the OSD. Pressing the back button while not in the OSD will display the currently selected signal source.
The OSD is relatively barebones, with the usual brightness, contrast, color temperature, and OSD position/timeout controls. There are also settings to control the maximum brightness, low blue light, and Eco mode. In addition, the monitor’s current resolution and refresh rate is displayed at the top of the OSD.
Audio on the Arzopa G1 Game
Like most speakers on portable monitors, the ones included in the G1 Game are more of an afterthought. They sound worse than laptop speakers, which is bad. There’s distortion as you pass 80 percent volume and there’s no base. I played “Canela” by Santana and it sounded like the song was recorded in a gas station bathroom. It was empty, lifeless and hollow.
But remember that most folks buy portable monitors to increase their productivity rather than listen to music. So, consider it a bonus, albeit one that doesn’t add much to the entire package.
The Arzopa G1 Game represents a remarkable value for those looking for a portable gaming monitor. The aluminum chassis feels durable, and the build quality is excellent. In addition, the thin and lightweight design makes it an easy travel companion.
However, while the included case does a good job of protecting the G1 Game’s IPS panel, it serves as a poor stand. You cannot adjust the monitor's angle when the stand is in use, and it’s not very sturdy in this position. We expect more, given the quality of the monitor itself. And while the 144 Hz refresh rate is nice in this space, the lack of FreeSync/G-Sync support is a big bummer.
The G1 Game retails for $189.99, but it has been on sale for $149.99 for the past month at Amazon. On top of that, a $20 instant coupon takes the price down to $129.99. That’s a screaming bargain for a 144 Hz portable monitor, which helps us to overlook some of its downsides (like subpar speakers).
If you want something with better color and inky blacks, look at the InnoCN 15A1F. However, the G1 Game is untouchable as a portable gaming monitor at this price.
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