GeChic On-Lap Monitor review

Extend you MacBook's display with this portable clip-on second monitor

GeChic On-Lap Monito
The GeChic On-Lap Monitor is a good way to increase productivity by adding an extra screen

TechRadar Verdict


  • +


  • +

    Easy to install


  • -

    Not great image quality

  • -

    No Micro-DVI support

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You might think that extending a workspace with an additional monitor is a feature only available to desktop-bound Macs, or MacBooks tethered to monitors via an awkward cable. The people at GeChic have tried to dispel these assumptions with a convenient portable monitor called the On-lap monitor.

Installation was easy, with four sturdy suckers being screwed on to the monitor housing, and then suctioned onto the back of our MacBook Air. Four stick-on plastic circles are provided if you have a Mac with a less compliant surface.

The display can be folded out to use in landscape mode next to your main screen or kept rear-facing for presentations. You can also stand it next to your notebook and use it in portrait orientation.

On-Lap monitor

The monitor is powered by an attached USB lead so you don't have to worry about finding a spare plug socket in a wall. A word of warning though – the GeChic On-Lap Monitor only comes with HDMI-to-mini HDMI and VGA-to-mini HDMI cables, so we needed to use an adapter for it to work with our MacBook Air.

On-Lap monitor

With the monitor connected and the MacBook powered up, the monitor was detected right away and our desktop was shown. Setup couldn't have been easier then, which is just as well considering the manual isn't particularly helpful.

When the monitor is tucked away behind the MacBook it doesn't add too much bulk. And while it doesn't quite match the sharpness and clarity of the MacBook Air's screen, it's not too bad.

In our tests the default settings performed badly colour-wise, but they were easily fixed. But if you're working with images and photos and depend on the best possible image quality, we wouldn't recommend the GeChic On-Lap Monitor – certainly not as the main monitor anyway.

On the other hand, if you want an easy way to add more space to the desktop for extra programs and websites to be open at once, this is a handy gadget for a pretty good price.

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Matt Hanson
Managing Editor, Core Tech

Matt is TechRadar's Managing Editor for Core Tech, looking after computing and mobile technology. Having written for a number of publications such as PC Plus, PC Format, T3 and Linux Format, there's no aspect of technology that Matt isn't passionate about, especially computing and PC gaming. Ever since he got an Amiga A500+ for Christmas in 1991, he's loved using (and playing on) computers, and will talk endlessly about how The Secret of Monkey Island is the best game ever made.