We recently reviewed the Innocn 15A1F, which is a 15.6-inch portable monitor that includes a full HD color OLED panel at an affordable price of $349. However, $349 isn’t the bottom line for Innocn’s OLED foray; the company also offers the 13.3-inch 13K1F for just $249.
13.3 inches is a bit small for a portable monitor, as most companies in this segment offer at least 14-inch panels. However, the 13K1F’s smaller size results in a thin and light device with a stylish look and an adjustable stand. Like its bigger brother, the 13K1F offers excellent build quality. However, it also inherits the large chin at the bottom of the display.
But the main reason people will look at the Innocn 13K1F is the promise of OLED color performance at an affordable price. While the MSRP of $249 is already a bargain, the current retail price is under $200, making it competitive with best portable monitors on the market.
Innocn 13K1F Portable Monitor Specifications
|Panel Type / Backlight||OLED|
|Screen Size / Aspect Ratio||13.3 inches / 16:9|
|Maximum resolution and refresh rate||1920×1080 at 60Hz|
|Maximum brightness||400 rivets|
|Reaction time||5 ms|
|Viewing angles||178 degrees (horizontal and vertical)|
|Ports||1x Mini-HDMI, 2x USB-C (DisplayPort 1.2 Alt Mode)|
Innocn 13K1F design
The Innocn 13K1F has a similar design language to its big brother, the 151A1F, but there are some key differences. While the 15A1F has flat sides and curved corners (think Apple iPad Air or iPad Pro), the 13K1F has flat sides along with a rounded bottom and top. Weighing just 1.39 pounds and just 0.28 inches thick, the 13K1F will fit into even the smallest laptop bag.
For better or worse, the 13K1F also has thick bezels like the 151A1F. While the top and side bezels are innocuous, measuring roughly 0.25 inches, the bottom bezel has a pronounced “chin,” measuring a full inch. The Innocn logo is depicted in the center of the chrome-plated lower panel under the cover glass.
The 13K1F features a glossy glass finish instead of the matte finish typical of this segment. We can attribute this design decision to the OLED panel, as the glossy finish adds quite a punch to the colors. The downside, however, is that reflections can become a hindrance at lower brightness levels and especially problematic outdoors, even at maximum brightness. The use of a glossy finish also means that fingerprints quickly appear when using this portable monitor. Fingerprints aren’t an issue with a desktop monitor, as placement is usually a matter of “set it and forget it.” However, a portable monitor is often used frequently and transported to multiple locations, resulting in fingerprints on the screen. It’s just something to keep in mind when looking at a portable monitor with a glossy screen.
All of the Innocn 13K1F’s ports are located on the right side of the 13K1F, including two USB-C ports and one Mini-HDMI port. Also located on the right side of the monitor are cutouts for one of the two built-in speakers and two buttons that control volume (these buttons also double as OSD navigation aids).
On the top of the Innocn 13K1F is a power button and an LED that indicates the power status (blue for on, orange for standby). The left side of the 13K1F only has circular cutouts for the second speaker. Like the 15A1F, Innocn decided not to include a headphone jack.
The back of the 13K1F is very similar to the 15A1F, with a circular marking in the upper center. Magnets are mounted behind the circle, allowing you to easily attach the adjustable metal stand. The stand has rubber feet to prevent the monitor from moving and can support the 13K1F in a nearly upright position. Although the removable stand is made of high-quality materials, we would have preferred a built-in solution. The detachable stand is another thing you can lose when you travel.
Screen Display for Innocn 13K1F
You can access the Innocn 13K1F’s OSD by pressing the power button. Navigating the OSD is done by pressing the volume up/down buttons. Command execution is achieved by pressing the power button once. To exit the submenu, you need to hold the power button for one second.
You’ll need to make settings changes fairly quickly while in the OSD, as it will automatically exit if you don’t make any inputs for five seconds. The OSD interface, while mostly focused on icons, is easy to understand.
While using the power and volume buttons is fine at this price point, I’d prefer a five-way navigation stick. And while I’m adding to my wishlist, it would be nice to have at least a 10 second OSD timeout instead of the stingy five seconds we currently have.
Image quality and performance of Innocn 13K1F
The Innocn 15A1F is a 13.3-inch 60Hz portable monitor, Full HD (1920 x 1080) panel. Innocn bucked the trend of using an IPS panel at that price and opted for a color OLED panel instead. OLED panels have extreme contrast ratioswhich contribute to their stunning, deep black levels.
The Innocn 13K1F has a claimed contrast ratio of 100,000:1 and promises a maximum brightness of 400 nits. However, we ran into a few issues with the claimed brightness specification. When first testing the monitor using a USB-C cable with DisplayPort Alt-Mode, we couldn’t get the brightness slider to move past the 20 percent mark in the OSD, reaching 100 nits using our tools. Tried PC and Mac with same result. I then used the included HDMI video cable and USB-C cable to power the 13K1F using a free USB-C port on my computer. The brightness level still does not exceed 20 percent.
Confused, I contacted Innocn and a representative informed me that the maximum 400 nits is achievable when you connect the supplied USB-C to an external power supply. Armed with this information, I plugged the included USB-C cable into a spare USB-C wall adapter and was able to crank the display up to 100 percent brightness.
This situation is problematic for several reasons. For starters, there is no wall adapter included in the box. Innocn only provides USB-C to USB-C cable and HDMI to Mini-HDMI cable. Making matters worse, neither the retail box nor the user manual explains that a power adapter is required to achieve maximum brightness levels.
Once we were able to increase the 13K1F’s brightness, we got to 264.8 nits versus the claimed 400 nits. While this score is higher than the Zion Pro and other IPS panels we’ve tested, it pales in comparison to the 15A1F (373.6 nits). It’s a disappointing result that’s even more embarrassing than the power adapter nonsense.
Things were more positive in terms of DCI-P3 and sRGB color results. The 13K1F showcases the benefits of OLED with 142.6 percent DCI-P3 coverage. The 13K1F also showed increased values in sRGB coverage, reaching 201.1 percent. Both numbers put it comfortably ahead Zion Pro with its 15.6-inch 4K OLED panel.
Black levels on the Innocn 13K1F’s OLED panels were stellar in my testing, matching the performance of its big brother, the 15A1F. I visited again Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness on Disney Plus and was equally impressed by the vivid colors, especially in the action-packed final hour of the film.
And as a car geek, I watched a few episodes of Hagerty’s Revelations with Jason Camisa. I was particularly impressed with how the 13K1F handled the blacked-out scenes in a recent episode where Cammisa spoke to the camera with the Toyota 2000GT’s gorgeous banana yellow piercing the display.
As adept as the 13K1F was at displaying video, it also handled my workload as a second monitor. The 13.3-inch is a bit small for my taste, but with the Full HD resolution, I mostly used it to handle my Slack conversations, iMessages, and editing Microsoft Excel spreadsheets. Sometimes I used Sling TV in full screen with the 13K1F on my peripheral while I worked.
Given that maximum brightness was just over 264 nits against the claimed 400 nits, plus the added drawback of a glossy screen, indoor reflections were an issue (even at maximum brightness). Annoyingly, I could see the reflection of my Apple Watch on the display while typing at my desk with the 13K1F positioned to the left of my center-mounted 32-inch 4K Dell monitor. Outdoor visibility took an even bigger hit as reflections were clearly visible – everything from tree branches to clouds showed merrily as I worked in the blazing sunlight.
I wasn’t expecting much from the integrated stereo speakers given the size of the Innocn 13K1F. As with the 15A1F I reviewed earlier, the speakers here are “good”. These should be enough for users who don’t have a better option when watching movies or TV shows. By default, I used my MacBook Pro’s speakers because they sound so much better. Your laptop’s internal speakers are probably better too if you plan to use the 13K1F as a second screen while on the go.
The Innocn 13K1F represents a great value in the portable monitor segment, especially for users looking for an inexpensive OLED panel. The 13K1F is currently priced at $249.99 on Amazon, plus a $50 coupon is available at checkout, bringing the price to $199.99 with free shipping. That’s incredible value for an OLED panel housed in an aluminum alloy chassis that exudes excellent fit and finish.
However, concessions were made to achieve this low price. Innocn has ditched the 3.5mm headphone jack, the stand (albeit sturdy) is another part to keep an eye on when travelling, reflections on the glossy screen are annoying, and there’s a confusing brightness situation. It’s bad enough that Innocn doesn’t include all the necessary accessories to achieve maximum brightness in the box, but it doesn’t even come close to the 400-nit mark when all requirements are met.
It’s up to you to decide whether these flaws are enough to take the 13K1F out of consideration. . To the 13K1F’s credit, the sub-$200 retail prices are certainly intriguing, and the lack of a power adapter can easily be solved, as many of us have an extra one lying around the house. Nothing else available under $200 – IPS or OLED – can compete with the 13K1F, so that puts it in a class of one. It’s not perfect, but it’s worth your attention if you’re looking for an affordable portable monitor.