How to fix Lenovo ThinkVision M14 portable monitor perpetually in standby mode
Date: 2024-02-14 | create | tech | lenovo | troubleshooting | thinkvision |
I recently purchased a Lenovo M14 ThinkVision portable monitor to serve as an additional monitor while I travel. I was pretty happy with its performance to weight ratio when I tested it at home but was quite frustrated when I couldn't get it to work on my first trip.
The problem: Every time I connected my M14 to my Windows 11 laptop it would flash on, then go to a "Standby mode" screen, then go blank.
I tried several different cords and lots of different recommendations from support forums before finally getting it to work (I'm typing this post on the M14 now!). In this post I'll share the things I did to fix it in the order I believe is most effective / fastest.
Turn your computer off and on again
This always seems like a dumb piece of advice but restarting a computer solves a surprising number of random issues.
This only takes like 30 seconds so might as well try this first.
Ensure your USB-C cord supports DisplayPort
This was the problem for me. Apparently the cord I used at home had different capabilities than the ones I bring with me on my travels - even though all of them allow data passing.
There are many different kinds of USB-C cords nowadays and the ThinkVision M14 is particularly picky about which ones it works with.
From the forums it seems like it needs DisplayPort capabilities but that's actually a hard thing to search for cause it collides with actual DisplayPort cords. So a better search is to find a cable that supports USB4 or Thunderbolt. Both of these support DisplayPort so works as a good proxy.
I picked up this Thunderbolt / USB 4 USB-C cable from Belkin and it worked like a charm.
My guess is that USB 3 and lower Thunderbolt versions probably work too but I haven't tested them so can't say for sure.
Update your firmware to the latest recommended states
This option has the lowest probability of succeeding and also takes the longest so it comes in last. That said it's generally a good idea to periodically update your firmware so still a good idea even if things are working.
A few things to try updating:
- Your OS - should be an update setting for Windows / Mac
- Your computer model - Manufacturers often have model-specific updates available, check your manufacturer website
- ThinkVision M14 drivers for your particular OS
Install all the recommended updates / drivers and restart your computer.
I'm still playing around with the M14 but generally I like having access to an extra monitor on the go without too much added weight. Plus the design makes it capable of working vertically and I'm a huge vertical monitor fan so that's a plus.
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