The Xebec Tri-Screen is an awesome piece of equipment. It adds two additional HD resolution screens to your laptop so you can work with more than one active window at a time. Transferring data back and forth between compound documents (a document that contains, elements from more than one application, like a Word Processor, Spreadsheet, and a Database) is a lot easier with more than one screen. Here, the Xebec trumps just about any other additional screen that I’ve seen (like my Vinpok Split).
Extra productivity tools are a big deal with me. I’m interested in nearly anything and everything that will help me realize productivity gains. Tools like the Xebec Tri-Screen fall directly into this category of device; and to be honest the Tri-Screen is right up my alley.
I have three displays on my home office desk for my MacBook Pro. At the other end of my desk, I have a dual screen system setup on a KVM that swaps between my SurfaceBook 2 and an older Mac Pro that I’m using as a digital darkroom. With tools like the Xebec Tri-Screen, I can have a triple display setup no matter where I go. The fact that its portable and adds two additional HD screens to your laptop allows you to put both spreadsheets and rich, full text in your presentations, or put rich graphics into your publications while editing a movie.
So where does the Xebec excel and where does it fall down? That’s easy. I’m going to throw these into a simple Pros and Cons list and we’ll go from there.
|Universal Connectivity||Won't fit in most backpack laptop sleeves|
|No External Power Needed||Multiple cables required|
|Portable||Multiple, potential technical issues (upside down display, resolution problems, etc.
See the Xebec FAQ
|More viewing surfaces than Vinpok Split or Apple's Side Car||Small screens at 10.1 inches, diagonal|
|Additional screens are a bigger drain on the battery|
There are a number of things that you should know about the Xebec Tri-Screen. While the company is AWESOME to deal and to work with, the device itself has come challenges. Its biggest issue is that its bulky.
Xebec recommends that you leave the device attached to the back of your laptop when you travel with it. At that point, all you’ll need to do is reattach the cables and you’re set to go. The problem here is that the device itself is bulky and adds a GREAT deal of thickness to the overall travel form factor of your laptop. I know it won’t fit in the laptop sleeve of my Nomatic Travel Backpack. I’m not certain if it will fit in the DAWN Tech Urban Backpack, either, once it arrives.
Xebec’s other issues, while easily “resolved,” have other lasting effects. For example, the screens are small. If you use the screens at their standard 1920×1200 resolution, they are very difficult to read. You can scale the display and it will be much easier to read, but you’re going to do a lot of extra scrolling on it. The resolution for the “small screen” issue can be found here.
The Xebec can also inappropriately flip a screen at times. I’m not certain what causes this or how you can prevent it from recurring. Thankfully, both Windows and macOS do provide fixes for this that can be easily implemented in their Display Settings.
The unboxing video above is more exploratory than a demonstration. I had not attached the device to my MacBook Pro until this point. What you saw was me working with the device for the first time. Many of the other unboxing videos you’ve seen on the internet show use of the device AFTER the user figured out how it all worked. I wanted to show this discovery so that you could see what that process looked like as well.
The Xebec Tri-Screen has a number of pros. For the price, it provides a great multi-screen solution for on-the-go professionals or power users that require more screens. The device isn’t without its challenges, however. Its displays can often “become confused,” and either display contents upside down or at an unreadable resolution. While these are easily resolvable, you may have to do them more than once. I have.
The display is also bulky. Xebec recommends you fold it up and leave it attached to your laptop while traveling. Its supposed to be portable, but I have found difficulty fitting it into the standard 15″ laptop sleeve in my Nomatic Travel Pack. Its replacement, the Dawn Urban Backpack likely won’t be a better replacement in this regard.
The device has some limitations and some minor issues; but if you’re willing to live with them, the Xebec is an awesome addition to your mobile tech and is hard to beat for its price.