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2012 MBP 13" (w/ KVM and Henge) and Dell 27" or Thunderbolt 27"???


macrumors newbie
Original poster
Aug 29, 2012
Hello. My first post.

My employer is giving me the new 2012 MBP 13" w/ SSD (I can get the 15" retina, but I want something more portable and w/ an optical drive). With it, I have a choice of any monitor. I am leaning towards the Dell U2711 (I opted out of the Dell 30" because it's just too big) or the Apple Thunderbolt 27". I can also get the Henge docking station (which I don't know anything about). I understand there's a significant cost difference in monitors, but price is not a factor. I can get either monitor without reservations.

Currently, I have a 4-port KVM switch (dual-monitor dvi) to switch between the upcoming MBP (replacing a Mac Pro) and a Windows machine. I have a dual monitor setup now (both are Samsung 245BW matte screen 1920x1080). The MBP will be mainly used for word processing and Internet in the office. I have no idea if the switch will work with the new monitor to achieve full resolution. I understand that I need to used either display port or dual-dvi to achieve full resolution on the new monitors. Yes?

Here are my concerns:
1. The glossy screen on the Thunderbolt (I'm assuming that having a mostly white background minimizes this effect).
2. How the Henge docking station will interact with the KVM and new monitor.
3. Use of a non-display port KVM switch with new monitor.
4. Adjustability and customization (e.g., height adjustment).

If cost is not a concern, which monitor would you get? I have never owned a Macbook Pro and don't know too much about thunderbolt. I want to be able to use my current KVM switch, but it looks like there are going to be problems with this new setup. Do I need to buy a new switch with display port?

Thank you.
Last edited:


macrumors 68030
Oct 14, 2011
For point 4, a TBD doesn't have height adjustment but you can tilt the screen from -5 to 25 degrees. Unless you mount it or put it on a small shelf.


macrumors 6502
Nov 7, 2009
If you go for the Thunderbolt display, you won't be able to use it on your desktop. If you plan on using a henge dock, the Thunderbolt display is a bit pointless as the main advantage of using a thunderbolt display is that you only have to connect one cable to have everything plugged in. With the henge dock you will place your laptop in it and it will connect all your peripherals (and monitor).

I'm not sure if the henge dock supports USB3.0 (the thunderbolt display doesn't support it..yet).

The henge dock is pretty much just a mould for you to put your connectors in. Your KVM will work with it, it just depends on the monitor

If you use the Dell, it has multiple inputs so you don't need to use a KVM at all for the monitor input.
The Thunderbolt display will only support Thunderbolt Macs (and possibly future PCs)

The Dell has lots of adjustability. The thunderbolt has minimal. You can mount both using VESA onto an adjustable desk/wall mount.


macrumors newbie
Original poster
Aug 29, 2012
Thanks for pointing that out.

"If you go for the Thunderbolt display, you won't be able to use it on your desktop."
What do you mean by this statement? I'm not following.

And, I want to be able to use my existing Samsung 24" and either Thunderbolt or Dell 27". Wouldn't I need to use a KVM to connect both monitors at the same time? That's how it's setup now.
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