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There are more Duet Display alternatives on the market than you think and the options include both free and paid. If you are looking for an innovative and cost-effective way to add a second monitor to your desktop or laptop, the following alternative apps to duet display can help.
Although Duet Display is a smart way to use your iPad, tablet or smartphone as a second monitor, it’s not the only one available, especially for those on a budget looking for a free option to get an extra screen.
After extensive research, we have found that there are both numerous free and paid alternatives to Duet Display. The following list includes mirroring software for everyone. Whether you need a free app or an extremely premium one, you’ll be surprised by the number of options.
Lets dive deeper and take a look at the 10 best Duet Display alternatives and which work best as a secondary display.
1. Splashtop XDisplay: Best Overall Alternative to Duet Display
When it comes to Duet Display alternatives, there’s not many better options than Splashtop XDisplay. The idea behind this app is exactly the same: it’s an innovative way to turn your iPad, Android tablet, Kindle or smartphone into an additional monitor for your desktop or laptop.
Splashtop XDisplay has more than 30 million daily users for a reason. As mentioned earlier, the app is compatible with all Apple and Android tablets and phones (iOS 7.0+ and Android 4.0+).
Duet Display vs Splashtop XDisplay: As for Duet Display alternative… the splashtop app is extremely fast and offers amazing 1080p and 60fps quality. This means you will not have as many issues such as screen lag or poor quality, which is quite similar to the output of duet display.
The Splashtop XDisplay app offers different plans that you can choose from and customize them to suit your needs. From business access to educational products, Splashtop is a complete screen solution. In addition, you can try the software for free for 14 days.
Note: You can also extend your monitor on your laptop with a laptop screen extender (or a portable monitor). This appears to be a common alternative to softwares that turn a tablet into a second monitor.
2. SpaceDesk: Easy to use Duet Display Alternative (Free)
Like Duet Display, SpaceDesk is one of the most popular multi-monitor applications on the market. The main difference is that SpaceDesk is specifically designed to run smoothly on Windows devices. This means you’ll be able to wirelessly display your Asus, Acer, Dell, HP, and other windows based laptops as a second monitor.
In general, SpaceDesk is a Windows desktop extension that can mirror your screen. However, with Pro version, you can set up a second screen on your computer by using a different device. So if you want to use your tablet or smartphone as a second screen, SpaceDesk can help you do that.
Duet Display vs SpaceDesk: While some users do claim that SpaceDesk is not as responsive as Duet Display, the overall experience is satisfactory. It’s interesting that splash top is available on both Mac and windows and requires two separate installations: One version mobile and one version Desktop.
The connection process is extremely fast and the screen quality is top notch. The only downside is that there are sometimes small delays when switching tabs. In any case, SpaceDesk proves to be a good alternative to Duet Display.
3. Luna display: Premium alternative to Duet Display Air & Pro
Luna Display is another practical and premium Duet Display alternative. Putting aside the fact that Luna Display only supports Apple devices, there is nothing better than it.
According to numerous users, Luna Display offers one of the best overall experiences on the market when compared to duet display and makes an ideal duet display alternative.
The Luna app can be used in three different ways:
- Mac to iPad: this is what most of us are looking for. In this mode, you can extend your desktop viewing from your Mac to any iPad. Like Duet Display, Luna supports full touch and gestures.
- Mac to Mac: This is a unique feature that allows you to use a second Mac as an extended monitor for your first Mac. Since this mode also works with earlier models, this is a clever way to reuse older desktops you may own.
- Headless: This mode lets you use your Mac or iPad as the main display for a Mac Mini or Mac Pro.
Since this software is part of the Astropad Studio software, it is important to know that Astropad can be used without the Luna dongle.’
Duet display vs Luna: Comparing the two, Luna Display and Duet Display will both display your iPad as a second monitor. The core difference is that the Luna app requires both software and hardware.
However, just because Duet Display doesn’t require hardware, and Luna does, doesn’t mean that Luna is he inferior second monitor software. In fact, Luna is quite advanced and has capabilities many Duet display alternatives can’t compete with.
For example, Luna has a lower latency when using it via your internet. The quality of the resolution is extremely high with little to no lag (an average of 24 ms via Wi-Fi during our hands on testing).
Compared to duet display’s software that extends a 2nd monitor usage on iPad, Luna uses it’s hardware to utilize your iPad as an actual, proper display that your device will recognize and provide a high level of quality all-around. Its for these reasons Luna is one of the best alternatives for Duet display.
While it’s tough to compete with Luna, there is also Duet Display Pro, an enhanced version of the Duet Display Air software and is ideal for those who need to turn their iPad into a drawing tablet with pressure sensitivity and tilt recognition. for more on this, see our post on the Best Drawing Tablets with Screen Built-in.
4. AirDisplay: Wireless Display Alternative to Duet Display
Just like Team Viewer, AirDisplay lets you connect your Apple mobile device (iPad or iPhone) and use it as an extended monitor for your computer. Although you can not use AirDisplay with Android devices, it works for both Mac and Windows computers.
The process is pretty similar to the software described above. You first need to purchase and download the app from your mobile device, and then download the driver app to your computer. And there you go, you have an enhanced monitor.
One of the best things about AirDisplay is that everything happens wirelessly. Plus, the app comes at an extremely affordable price ($10 range). You’ll be able to wirelessly extend your Apple Device (iPad or iPhone) to your Windows laptop or MacBook/iMac.
Air Display vs Duet Display: Similar to Duet Display, AirDisplay is another ideal method of making your iOS device behave as a second monitor. Using AirDisplay, you will be able to quickly view documents,, web pages, photos, videos, certain PC games, and other content without having a hyper CPU-intensive application ran in the background.
5. SideCar: Top Apple Duet Display Alternative
If you are a big Apple fan, you’ll be happy to hear that Apple recently unveiled its own Duet Display alternative. Apple’s SideCar is an amazing solution for those who own Apple devices. So if you want to connect your Mac to an iPad or iPhone and use them as a second monitor, SideCar is the best solution.
Duet Display vs SideCar: The app works in the same way as Duet Display. However, the big difference is in connectivity. In fact, SideCar works in two different ways: either with a wired connection or via Bluetooth. Some users say that the lack of a Wi-Fi connection is a drawback of SideCar.
However, this should not be a problem if you work within a range of a few meters. In summary, SideCar is a great way for Apple fans to use their iPads as a display for Mac desktops without installing a third-party app. See more here.
6. Team Viewer: Best Free alternative to Duet Display (no iPad 2nd screen)
Team Viewer is much more than just an app for multiple monitors. The app itself allows you to use a fairly straightforward interface and choose the number of monitors you want to add to your PC. We already know that the Team Viewer suite is one of the best when it comes to remote connectivity.
Duet Display vs TeamViewer: The app allows you to monitor devices remotely and is a bit different than Duet Display Therefore, it is obvious that you can use Team Viewer to add a second screen to your computer. The process is quite simple as you just need to download and install the app and you can remotely transfer the screen.
One aspect which his unique, is that team viewer allows for audio to also be played via video player on the remote device. I found many duet display alternative apps had issues with the remote audio feature, while Team Viewer did not.
The TeamViewer app gives you the ability to control the mouse and keyboard of the second device. Most importantly, Team Viewer is free for non-commercial use.
7. Duet Air
Duet Air does exactly what Duet Display does, but the main difference is that it’s designed specifically for professionals. So if you want to turn your iPad, Mac or PC into a fast second display, Duet Air is one of the best ways to do it. Numerous authorities such as the Guardian, Forbs and Insider argue that this is one of the best apps in the niche.
During our testing, Duet Air proved to be exactly what the review says it is: an amazing business solution. It was extremely fast and the screen resolution was simply amazing. So if you are looking to use your iPad as a second screen on the go, we highly recommend giving Duet Air a try.
The app works seamlessly on most Windows, iOS and macOS devices. Finally, Duet Air has proven to consume very little battery power. So if you need an all-rounder, Duet Air is a great choice. It’s important to note that Duet Air does not have the drawing tablet capabilities that Duet pro does. See our post on all the ways to write and draw on a non touch screen laptops.
If you are looking for software that can use your iPad as a second computer screen without Bluetooth, iDisplay is a good choice. The app offers two different connectivity options: You can connect it via USB or Wi-Fi.
However, In the past, I found iDisplay’s second monitor performance to be a bit more laggy than Duet Display, but in the newer versions it appeared to work quite well. It felt like it refreshed a bit slower than other alternatives, though this was subjective and objective tests still need to be ran.
As with most of the apps on our list, iDisplay streams video at 60 frames per second. Another feature of iDisplay is that it supports multitouch on all devices. Also, iDisplay lets you connect more than one device to your computer.
Although iDisplay is not free, it is reasonably priced in relation to the features it offers, especially as a side monitor.
9. AstroPad – (Standard)
AstroPad Standard is an alternative to Luna Display. The main difference between the two is that with AstroPad Standard you do not have to use a dongle. That said, AstroPad Standard only works as a multipurpose mirror of your Mac on your iPad and does not include the other 2 modes.
The process is pretty simple, as all you need to do is connect the two devices wirelessly through the app. After you download the app, the options are endless. Standard is the best choice for anyone who wants to mirror their Mac on an iPad for things like drawing, annotating, or remote whiteboarding. This will allow you to use iPad as second monitor
In addition to the Wi-Fi connection, you can also connect devices via USB. A unique feature of AstroPad Standard is the Apple Pencil support and pressure sensitivity.
10. Super Display: Good second monitor app for Android to Windows
Since we have reviewed many Apple-only mirroring software, it is time to examine Super Display, an Android mirroring software. Super Display is one of the most popular apps that turns your Android device (tablet or smartphone) into a portable display for your Windows PC. All you need to do to expand or duplicate your screen is to connect your devices via a USB cable.
Most users use Super Display to turn their Android tablet or laptop into a graphics tablet. When it comes to using a drawing in apps like Photoshop or Illustrator, there’s nothing better than Super Display. The process is lag-free and the app supports pressure sensitivity.
For all these reasons, Super Display is a prime solution for artists and graphic designers who want to use their tablet as a graphics tablet. The Super Display actually allows you auto turn your android into a graphics tablet. As far as stylus pens go, see our post on the Best stylus for drawing on Android.
Duet Review and Questions
Below I’ll cover duet air and duet pro questions that are commonly asked by the community.
Is there a free duet display
No, duet display is not free and is a one time purchase to turn your tablet/iPad into an extended second display. If you’re using duet display air you’ll be able to use a wireless connection in order to turn your iPad into a wireless second display.
Is duet better than Splashtop
Splashtop is a better professional solution to extending and mirroring your Display to your secondary device, such as iPad. The reason why it is better is that it has more features than Duet Display.
While subjective, I found Splashtop to be a bit quicker in terms of lag when compared to duet display… however, some users report that duet display works well for them and without lag. Depending on your device and needs, it’s ideal to test which one works best based on this.
How do I use a duet as a second monitor
In order to use the word display as a second monitor you’ll need to download the duet display client for your operating system. You’ll then download the duet display app on your iPad/tablet. Depending on if you’re using duet display air or not, you’ll be connecting your iPad either through USB or through a wireless Wi-Fi network. Duet Display can also be used as a third, fourth, and fifth monitor; allowing users to extend your screen even further.
Does duet display lag
I found Duet display to lag minimally, but depending on the device I’m using it appears to vary. On the newer devices and the Duet Display Air, I found an absolute minimal slowing down between the two devices. However, this will depend a bit on your wireless connection if you are using duet air. A wired connection will always be ideal for fast speeds.
We’ve covered other aspects of this information in our Duet Review earlier in this post as well.
When using a recent, up to date iPad Air or Pro, I found no lag present. Occasionally you’ll get a slight ‘stutter’ as some users call it depending on the settings of the resolution you have chose.
Can you use duet display wirelessly
Yes you can wirelessly use Duet Display Air to extend your computer screen to your iPad. While the standard version does not supply this capability, Duet display air does allow for this to occur. Other Wireless alternatives to duet display include Luna and AirDisplay.
The Best Duet Display Alternatives are Splashtop XDisplay, SpaceDesk, Luna Display, Super display, Duet Air, and Team Viewer. In this post I outlined why each of these duet display alternatives are ideal for users looking to have a second monitor for their iPad or Tablet. Certain softwares listed are compatible with both windows and Mac. Others require hardware to be attached.
Luna for example has a hardware solution that allows for high-resolution with minimal lag and is an ideal solution for those looking for the best possible performance. A similar experience is used with the Splashtop XDisplay and are premium options. If you’re in need of a drawing tablet in addition to using your iPad as a second display, Duet Display Pro will accomplish this.