2011 MBA External Displays

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by mbender2004, Aug 9, 2011.

  1. mbender2004 macrumors newbie

    Aug 9, 2011
    First off, I just purchased my first Mac product, the 2011 MBA. I have ditched the windows PC except for work.

    My question is that I have two external DVI displays and would like to use them with the Air. What would everyone recommend to get them working along with the MBA? I have searched google and saw mixed reviews and what not regarding two externals. Is there a special thunderbolt (mini dp) adapter that is recommended?

    Thanks for the help in advance.
  2. LeakedDave macrumors regular

    Jun 26, 2011
    Honestly I can't recommend one but any Mini Display Port to DVI adapter should do fine. See if there's one on the Apple online store.
  3. deeddawg macrumors 604

    Jun 14, 2010
    I don't think the Macbook Air can drive two external displays.

    My 13" MBA is on order, but I use my Macbook Pro with a minidisplayport to HDMI adapter driving a Viewsonic 1080p 24" and it works great. The adapter I have carries audio over the HDMI link (not all do). Check the Apple store, but price-compare to Monoprice.com -- fantastic source for good, inexpensive cables and adapters.

    I might have gone with DVI, but the Viewsonic's DVI port is hooked to my work laptop docking station. Whole idea was to be able to switch without messing with cables; I just plug in the Macbook Pro and switch the monitor input.
  4. nniicckk macrumors newbie

    May 21, 2008
    deeddawg is right on all counts.

    The MBA cannot drive two external displays. (Reference - The anandtech review notes that the Thunderbolt chipset used on the MBA can only drive one external monitor.)

    Your external display can however go to 2560 by 1600 (Reference - Apple MBA specs sheet) if you use a dual link DVI cable.

    And do check out Monoprice. I have had excellent experience with them.

    mini display port -> hdmi (~$7)
    mini display port -> DVI (single link) (~$7)
    mini display port -> VGA (~$14)

    Apple wants $29-$35 for these.
  5. xraydoc macrumors demi-god


    Oct 9, 2005
    The MBA will also do 2560x1600 over display port. Several Dell monitors (and others I'm sure) have display port inputs. Saves on having to buy a dual-link DVI adapter, just a cheap mini-DP to DP cable.
  6. MJedi macrumors 6502a


    Dec 16, 2010
    There are USB to DVI adapters that you can use with your MBA so that you can have another external monitor, aside from the one connected to the DisplayPort. I use one from Kensington, and it works well, but there are other manufacturers. These devices use DisplayLink technology. However, the Lion drivers from DisplayLink are in Beta and have some issues.

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