Dual-screen laptops, or computers with two screens built into a single chassis, have become quite the rage. Ever since many leading brands announced interests in this realm at mega-events like the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) and Computex, audiences have been enraptured.
While the initial targeting for these devices is, obviously, creative professionals like film-makers and editors, their utility goes way deeper.
In essence, anyone who presently uses two screens with their desktop computer stands to benefit from this ground-breaking design.
The right choice of a laptop with a secondary display can help you navigate through meetings at work, defeat foes on the arena, and get much more done vis-à-vis creative projects. It is quite a winsome deal!
Many manufacturers have come up with products in this space. Asus, HP and Lenovo remain the best picks at the moment. Machines in these portfolios combine the benefits of an additional display with high-end processing configurations.
They also offer impressive primary displays (FHD, 4K UHD) to ensure you are well sorted for multimedia-based endeavors.
Of course, the new design comes with some limitations, not to overlook their more expensive pricing. So, is buying one of these laptops worth it? Or is this another fad you are better off ignoring?
Our Picks: 5 Best Dual-Screen Laptops 2023
Here are some of the finest laptops with secondary displays that can beautifully slip into different roles at the office, your gaming den, and elsewhere.
1. ASUS Zenbook Pro 14 Duo OLED 14-inch Dual-Screen Laptop
ASUS is one of the leading brands that introduced the concept of dual-screen laptops, so we had to kickstart the list with the Zenbook Pro 14 Duo.
This stunning device stands out with its next-gen ScreenPad Plus, a 12.7” secondary touchscreen display panel with the unique AAS ultra that enhances the tilt for a more comfortable visual experience.
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Built on the Intel Evo platform, the laptop is powered by the 12th generation Intel Core i7-12700H processor with integrated Intel Iris Xe graphics for the ultimate performance and responsiveness.
The primary display in the laptop features a 14.5” 2.8K OLED display with 120Hz refresh rate and 16:10 aspect ratio.
As for the internal specs of the model, users get to further maximize their performance and productivity with the 1TB SSD storage and up to 32GB RAM for superior multitasking.
Since its catered towards creators, the laptop comes with 3-months Adobe Creative Cloud subscription too.
Reasons to buy
- Sleek and modern design
- Responsive display panels
- Built on Intel Evo platform
Reasons to avoid
- A little pricey
- Lacks good thermal solution
2. ASUS ZenBook Pro Duo 15 OLED UX582 15-inch Dual-Screen Laptop
If you don’t mind paying a higher price to channel your creativity, the ASUS ZenBook Pro Duo 15 is another worthy mention in the list.
It features a lot similar features like the ZenBook Pro Duo 14 but comes with a larger and more expansive display.
The ScreenPad Plus in this one measure 14” and is a 4K matte touchscreen secondary display that optimizes the user productivity. The primary display is a 15.6” 4K OLED display panel with 2160p screen resolution.
Designed for creators, no one will ever have to complain about the display’s brightness and vividness ever in the future.
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As for the performance, the model is powered by the 12th generation Intel Core i9-12900H processor with RTX 3070 Ti GPU for the ultimate content creation and gameplay.
It is also integrated with 1TB SSD storage and 32GB RAM for faster application boot-up and multitasking.
Reasons to buy
- Features the unique ErgoLift hinge design
- Superior display quality
- Prolonged battery life
Reasons to avoid
- Very expensive
- Noisy cooling fans
3. ASUS ROG Zephyrus Duo 16 Dual-Screen Gaming Laptop
For the gaming enthusiasts looking for a dual-screen gaming laptop, the ROG Zephyrus Duo 16 is a bestseller. It is no doubt an expensive laptop but the specifications make up for the price you pay for it.
Fueled with the latest AMD Ryzen 9 6900HX and RTX 3080 Ti, gaming performance is out of this world.
That aside, the primary and secondary display in the model feature a 14” 4K ScreenPad Plus secondary touchscreen display and a 16” mini-LED QHD primary display with 1600p screen resolution and 165Hz refresh rate.
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Also, the combination of 2TB SSD with 32GB RAM takes the overall gameplay to the next level.
As for the thermal solutions go, the ROG Zephyrus Duo 16 is backed with ROG Intelligent Cooling to prevent overheating after longer gaming hours. It is pre-installed with Windows 11 OS.
Reasons to buy
- Stunning and premium build
- Responsive display
- Superior and uninterrupted performance
Reasons to avoid
- Quite expensive
- Audio output doesn’t live up to the expectations
4. Lenovo ThinkBook Plus Gen 3 17-inch Dual Screen Laptop
A budget-friendly but 17” dual-screen laptop, the Lenovo ThinkBook Plus Gen 3 is for business professionals, creators and students alike.
Check Price on Lenovo Official
This multitasking PC features a very unique 8” multitouch secondary display beside the keyboard.
As for the primary display, it is equipped with a 17.3” 3K display panel with 1440p screen resolution and 400 nits brightness.
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Moving ahead from the dual-display setting, the model is powered by up to 12th Gen. Intel Core i7 processor with integrated Intel Iris Xe graphics.
What further propels the performance and productivity of the model is the combination of 1TB SSD storage with up to 32GB RAM configuration.
Lenovo also doesn’t compromise on the battery life since the model supports up to 11 hours of prolonged battery life and productivity without any compromise.
Also, it comes pre-integrated with Windows 11 OS.
Reasons to buy
- Expansive 17” display panel
- Responsive performance
- Affordable price range
Reasons to avoid
- Secondary display isn’t that useful
- Port selection could be better
5. Lenovo ThinkBook Plus Gen 2
Welcome to a whole new category of computing devices: multitasking pros!
The 13.3” Lenovo ThinkBook Plus Gen 2 has been specially designed for modern-day professionals who need to collaborate with their colleagues and get multiple things done at once.
Equipped with a 13.3” FHD monitor and a 12” e-ink display, this novel laptop lets you take notes directly on the cover. You can even sync with OneNote and transform your notes into diagrams or text.
So, what is the net result? Well, arguably, you should be able to experience much faster reviews and team-work during meetings and discussions.
As per the company’s research, the multitasking-friendly offerings of this device should let you save as much as 2.1 hours per day. (Incidentally, that’s the amount of time that reportedly gets lost in re-focusing while switching tasks.)
This offering comes with additional bonuses such as integrated Alexa and a fingerprint reader. It is committed to giving you a secure user experience, which is why it also includes a camera shutter and a TPM chip.
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When the concept was first floated, the second screen was pictured as a canvas for artists, architects, photographers, etc.
It would come in handy for tasks like viewing timelines and context menus—essentially activities with which creative people dabble.
In recent times, however, dual-screen devices are emerging as productivity- and convenience boosters for a wider audience, including businesspersons and gamers. In fact, an additional screen can prove to be useful even for basic web browsing.
Perhaps the greatest win of these laptops is their focus on optimizing the way users interact with the interface.
Typically, companies have invested energies in making laptops lighter and thinner. This advancement goes the extra mile to make your usage more intuitive and wholesome.
A Second Screen: Distraction or Innovation?
A common perception among some users is that an additional screen in a laptop causes distraction.
It lowers focus on the current task and creates a cluttered workspace and mind-space.
In newly launched dual-screen laptops, this perception is rapidly emerging to be flawed. Added screens like the ScreenPad Plus in Asus laptops let you work with multiple windows and apps so neatly that it is a multitasking triumph.
You will probably find it saves time on a regular basis, similar to a desktop-with-multiple-screens arrangement.
Brands like Lenovo are using this opportunity to leverage on new-age technologies like e-ink. Highly beneficial for scribbling notes and reading, this is a smart and energy-efficient way to interact with your laptop.
E-ink displays are also popular for saving battery life, which is a blessing for people with travel-intensive lifestyles.
Things to Consider Before Buying a Dual-Screen Laptop
While the benefits are evident, is there anything you should be wary of before purchasing one of these computers? Here are some potential limitations of which you should be mindful:
- Smaller keyboard: The keyboard experience may be sub-par. Some laptops with two screens may have to compromise on the keyboard size, leading to a cramped typing experience.
- Slower response rate: More displays, more processing! You may experience higher response time, depending on the specs you end up with and your usage patterns.
- Risk of damage: No surprises here—a second screen could potentially limit portability. In the case of drops and shocks, you are likelier to cause damage.
- Greater heat generated: It is natural for these laptops to produce more heat. This can be a problem unless the cooling mechanism is intelligent enough to handle things. Effective heat dissipation becomes a must in high-end machines intended for gaming or intensive tasks like coding and multimedia content editing.
- More expensive: Currently, you will have to shell out a greater sum for these laptops. For instance, the 14” ZenBook Duo by Asus costs around $1500. However, whether or not this fits into your budget is best decided keeping the productivity wins in sight.
- Difficult to use on the lap: The keyboard design can make such laptops awkward to use on the lap. The lack of a wrist rest can make the usage experience tricky unless the device is kept on a table or a workstation.
That said, dual-screen devices have several possibilities and can fit right into the lives of busy professionals who miss having a workstation-like experience outside the office. The extra screen can make a terrific difference to the way you perceive work—or play—and how you get it done.
Dual-screen laptops are swiftly becoming popular with audiences that wish to magnify their productivity and overall user experience.
In the act of adding a display, makers are radically expanding horizons for the people, and this comes in handy for today’s time-starved, ambitious, task-switcher user.
In purchasing one of these, you would be well-advised to make a selection based on your overarching priority.
For instance, if you are looking at amplified gaming, then a laptop like the ASUS ROG Zephyrus Duo 16 or the HP OMEN X 2S can be an excellent choice. You stand to benefit from features like brilliant cooling for sustainability, tremendous storage space, and a wide color gamut for absorbing imagery.
If, however, your prime lookout is multitasking, consider picking something like the Lenovo ThinkBook Plus. It promises to work out gloriously for note-taking, managing meetings—basically, getting stuff done.
Computers like the Asus ZenBook Pro Duo 15 OLED or the Asus ZenBook Pro Duo 14 OLED are also worth your consideration for day-to-day work, particularly if you are already familiar with ZenBooks and wish to prioritize portability.
Only time will tell if dual-screen laptops become the next big thing in the computing market. They will have to overcome current shortcomings and gripes in the areas of keyboard comfort and cooling.
But this much is certain—they are a testimony to the thought that manufacturers have started putting into human interface design. This goes beyond the routine advancements in laptop build that the industry has seen all this while. In itself, that is quite a victory.