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Old Nov 5, 2012, 07:33 PM   #1
Kyle Sherriff
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Mac Mini Duel 2560x1440 Monitor Issue

Hey all.
I do apologise If I am posting this in the wrong section but bare with me as I'm new to the forum! Anyhow onto my question.

I am currently looking to purchase a Mac for music production, this time I've decided to go with a desktop istead of a laptop as it's just more practical for Music, anyhow after thinking back and fourth I narrowed my discisions down to 2 options.

The late 2012 Ivy Bridge Mac Mini - i5 (My first choice)
Or
The 2009 Mac Pro. (If I have to)

I understand these are both very different machines but here me out!

The reason I have picked these machines is because they have one thing in common, they dont come with monitors, obviously. (Like the iMac)

I'm looking to run 2 2560x1440 27" monitors they are the the
[QH270-Lite] Achieva ShiMian 27" IPS monitors. they are essentially a budget thunderbolt display. However here is my problem.

the monitor requires a DVI-D only to power it at full resolution. Now, is there any way in hell I can power two of these monitors from a Mac mini?

(WITHOUT using a Matrox Duel Head To Go type product that gives you one big display)

As the Mac mini would be much more cost effective and practical than the Mac Pro I've tried almost every forum I can think of to find an answer to this, and there doesnt seem to be any clear cut way of powering both monitors from the Mac Mini. I don't mind using something like a USB 3.0 adapter to DVI-D to power the second monitor, even if it's a big laggy) But there is a small problem.. I can't seem to find one that supports 2560x1440.

If you guys have ANY idea how I can power both of thease monitors without using a Matrox DuelHead2Go Type product that links both displays into one big display, please let me know.

Here is the link to the Ebay listing insace I've missed something screemingly obvious, Thanks!

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/QH270-Lite...item4ab5f0365a
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Old Nov 5, 2012, 09:27 PM   #2
FreakinEurekan
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I have an older Mini so not speaking from authority here, but I would presume you would hook one monitor up to the HDMI port (using the HDMI-DVI adapter included with the Mac Mini), and use a Mini-DP to DVI adapter to drive the 2nd monitor from the Thunderbolt port. That's been my plan when I upgrade my Mini in a few months, hopefully it will work
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Old Nov 5, 2012, 09:33 PM   #3
TRAV9614
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FreakinEurekan View Post
I have an older Mini so not speaking from authority here, but I would presume you would hook one monitor up to the HDMI port (using the HDMI-DVI adapter included with the Mac Mini), and use a Mini-DP to DVI adapter to drive the 2nd monitor from the Thunderbolt port. That's been my plan when I upgrade my Mini in a few months, hopefully it will work
The hdmi adapter will only support a resolution of 1920x1080.
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Old Nov 5, 2012, 09:49 PM   #4
philipma1957
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so you want to push 2 1440p monitors with an intel hd4000 integrated gpu. lets say the 2012 mini came with 2 t-bolt ports and the hook up was easy peasy. (not true but just saying) do you expect good quality video moving all those pixels around with the 4000 gpu?

not going to be great. so you are stuck with a mac pro. I think a 2010 mac pro will let you drop in a gtx 670 and your problems will be solved. cost more like 2k or 2.5 k vs 700 or so.
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Old Nov 6, 2012, 07:21 AM   #5
Kyle Sherriff
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Quote:
Originally Posted by philipma1957 View Post
so you want to push 2 1440p monitors with an intel hd4000 integrated gpu. lets say the 2012 mini came with 2 t-bolt ports and the hook up was easy peasy. (not true but just saying) do you expect good quality video moving all those pixels around with the 4000 gpu?

not going to be great. so you are stuck with a mac pro. I think a 2010 mac pro will let you drop in a gtx 670 and your problems will be solved. cost more like 2k or 2.5 k vs 700 or so.

I might well just buy a Mac Pro. Which is the cheapest model I can get which would support 2 2560x1440 monitors? or atleast the one with the GPU that would handle it.
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Old Nov 6, 2012, 08:10 AM   #6
FreakinEurekan
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TRAV9614 View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by FreakinEurekan
I have an older Mini so not speaking from authority here, but I would presume you would hook one monitor up to the HDMI port (using the HDMI-DVI adapter included with the Mac Mini), and use a Mini-DP to DVI adapter to drive the 2nd monitor from the Thunderbolt port. That's been my plan when I upgrade my Mini in a few months, hopefully it will work
The hdmi adapter will only support a resolution of 1920x1080.
OK, I see HDMI only supports single-link DVI. Should handle my 1600x1200 OK but not a good solution for the OP. Thanks for the clarification.
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Old Nov 7, 2012, 07:46 AM   #7
DitteVilladsen
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In addition to a dual line DVI, a mini-DisplayPort to (regular) DisplayPort cable should give you the 2640 x 1440 resolution. That's what I'm using on my Dell U2417HM display. The DisplayPort cable is a third of the price of a dual line DVI cable.
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Old Nov 7, 2012, 09:52 AM   #8
Fishrrman
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Suggestion:
Get the i7 Mini instead of the i5.

The extra cores may help with processing power, particularly if you run a lot of plugins...
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Old Nov 7, 2012, 10:06 AM   #9
omvs
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It is possible to drive 2560x1440x40Hz out the mini's HDMI port using switchresx. I have a QH270 variant at home (the one with HDMI/vga/etc) and it will *not* work at 40Hz.

But the Auria EQ276W will ($399 from microcenter) - I have that and 30" (2560x1600x60Hz) hooked up to a 2011 mini for my work setup.

In theory, the HDMI port on the mini can support the bandwidth, and I believe others have managed to do 2560x1600x60Hz through windows. But no luck doing it under OSX that I'm aware of.

I suspect for music work you'd be fine with 40Hz.
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Old Nov 7, 2012, 04:53 PM   #10
Kyle Sherriff
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Thanks for all your suggestions guys, however I am going to buy a Mac Pro I think. I like watching allot of movies so I think an 8 core mac pro with 2x DVI-D ports is perfect for what I need, I'll have to work a few extra shifts to get it but who cares!

Cheers all!
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