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alexandero

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Apr 19, 2004
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As the LG UltraFine 21" 4K display has a shipping time of 5-7 weeks and a rather high price:

What 4K displays are suggested to use with the new MBPs? I've not heard of any others with USB-C/Thunderbolt 3, so I'm wondering if one should look for displays with HDMI, Thunderbolt 2 or other connection types. Especially as it seems that there's a high chance to end up with a 30Hz refresh rate (but I'm unsure if that's a limitation of the dongle or display or connection type).

PS: as I'm not willing to carry my charger from place to place, I'd prefer to charge my MBP via the display. In case that's not possible with anything but the new LG, I'd have to factor in the price for an additional charger (and the necessary dongle from USB-C to whatever is suggested).

Thanks.
 

inhalexhale1

macrumors 65816
Jul 17, 2011
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As the LG UltraFine 21" 4K display has a shipping time of 5-7 weeks and a rather high price:

What 4K displays are suggested to use with the new MBPs? I've not heard of any others with USB-C/Thunderbolt 3, so I'm wondering if one should look for displays with HDMI, Thunderbolt 2 or other connection types. Especially as it seems that there's a high chance to end up with a 30Hz refresh rate (but I'm unsure if that's a limitation of the dongle or display or connection type).

PS: as I'm not willing to carry my charger from place to place, I'd prefer to charge my MBP via the display. In case that's not possible with anything but the new LG, I'd have to factor in the price for an additional charger (and the necessary dongle from USB-C to whatever is suggested).

Thanks.

I justice noticed those USB-C ports are USB 2. How can this be possible. I can't imagine they would do that.

Edit: What the hell is wrong with them.

4K: Ports: One USB-C (input), three USB-C (USB 2, 480 Mbps)

5K: Ports: One Thunderbolt 3 (input), three USB-C (USB 3.1 gen 1, 5Gbps)
 
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Foss

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Sep 11, 2008
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Thanks, but that one has the same US$ 699 price tag. I'm looking for a 21" display in the 400-500 US$ price range. Any other suggestions?

USB-C Monitors are pretty new and the pickings are slim currently. Everyone is expecting more models to come out from all the major players and hopefully the price to come down some. Apple is the first to push USB-C very hard, and it's clearly the future. I'm tempted by the LG monitor that I mentioned. Power, 4K@60, downstream USB ports via one cable is awesome!
 
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inhalexhale1

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Jul 17, 2011
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USB-C Monitors are pretty new and the pickings are slim currently. Everyone is expecting more models to come out from all the major players and hopefully the price to come down some. Apple is the first to push USB-C very hard, and it's clearly the future. I'm tempted by the LG monitor that I mentioned. Power, 4K@60, downstream USB ports via one cable is awesome!

USB 2.0
 
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JTToft

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Apr 27, 2010
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Aarhus, Denmark
Remember that any monitor connected purely over plain USB-C will have its USB hub downgraded to 2.0 speeds if used at 4K 60 Hz.

The LG UltraFine one seems to go one step further by always limiting the ports to 2.0 regardless of resolution or refresh rate.

For a truly capable one-cable solution, Thunderbolt 3 is the only game in town.
 
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alexandero

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Apr 19, 2004
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Everyone is expecting more models to come out from all the major players and hopefully the price to come down some.
So what's the second best option for 4K/60Hz, if not Thunderbolt 3 / USB-C? Thunderbolt 2? HDMI?

I'm asking as the company I work for is willing to provide a 4K display, as long as it's in the 'normal' price range of 400-500$, and I'm unsure what model to suggest to them.
 
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cube

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If you want real estate, not retina, look at 4KTVs starting at 39".

With HDMI 2.0, 4K@60Hz will not be full color.

There are some older Panasonic with DisplayPort.
 
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alexandero

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Apr 19, 2004
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If you want real estate, not retina, look at 4KTVs starting at 39".
That might be a smart move for my living room, but unfortunately I'm looking for a solution for my office desk. It should therefor be 21-24", retina, 60Hz and moderately priced. Is a display with Thunderbolt 2 (DisplayPort 1.2) an option? (seems as if HDMI does not support 4K with more than 30Hz)

E.g. the Dell Ultra HD 4K Monitor P2415Q costs $350 and has DisplayPort 1.2. Would it run 4K/60Hz? And using the Apple Thunderbolt 3 to Thunderbolt 2 adapter, would it be able to charge the MacBook Pro?
 
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cube

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That might be a smart move for my living room, but unfortunately I'm looking for a solution for my office desk. It should therefor be 21-24", retina, 60Hz and moderately priced. Is a display with Thunderbolt 2 (DisplayPort 1.2) an option? (seems as if HDMI does not support 4K with more than 30Hz)
I have a 3D curved 48" Samsung Series 8 SUHD on my desk.

I was looking for 40", but I wanted 3D and curved and found a great deal.

A bit too big for the Apple menu bar, but I got used to it.

For text it is great, it is the equivalent of 4x 24" Full HD monitors.
 
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spacebro

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That might be a smart move for my living room, but unfortunately I'm looking for a solution for my office desk. It should therefor be 21-24", retina, 60Hz and moderately priced. Is a display with Thunderbolt 2 (DisplayPort 1.2) an option? (seems as if HDMI does not support 4K with more than 30Hz)

I'm using a 43" wasabi mango 4k display with a max 2015 rmbp 15". This is sufficient to drive it at 60hz. It takes up most of the span of my desk but it is flat so it can be pushed up against the wall giving me a lot of space on my desk. It really changed my work life being able to use my computer desk as a work bench. Tools like a usb microscope and usb oscilloscope are so much more useful displayed on a giant 4k screen right behind what you are working on, right up next to the code and schematics you also need to look at.
 
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JTToft

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Apr 27, 2010
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So what's the second best option for 4K/60Hz, if not Thunderbolt 3 / USB-C? Thunderbolt 2? HDMI?
- Depends what you're looking for. Thunderbolt has full docking capabilities, plain USB-C has some, while traditional connections such as DisplayPort and HDMI have none. In order of preference, I would say, generally speaking:

Thunderbolt 3 > Thunderbolt 2 > USB-C > DisplayPort > HDMI

(With the USB-C caveat I mentioned above, which might make DisplayPort or HDMI preferable in some cases.)

That might be a smart move for my living room, but unfortunately I'm looking for a solution for my office desk. It should therefor be 21-24", retina, 60Hz and moderately priced. Is a display with Thunderbolt 2 (DisplayPort 1.2) an option? (seems as if HDMI does not support 4K with more than 30Hz)

E.g. the Dell Ultra HD 4K Monitor P2415Q costs $350 and has DisplayPort 1.2. Would it run 4K/60Hz? And using the Apple Thunderbolt 3 to Thunderbolt 2 adapter, would it be able to charge the MacBook Pro?
- HDMI does support 4K 60 Hz. Just has to be HDMI 2.0 rather than 1.4. DisplayPort is preferable, though.

The Apple Thunderbolt adaptor can't be used for DisplayPort connections. And for charging, a monitor connection with Thunderbolt 3 or USB-C is required.

The best way to connect something like a P2415Q would be a direct USB-C to DisplayPort cable from Mac to monitor.
 
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zaphoyd

macrumors regular
Jun 25, 2002
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Wisconsin/Illinois
I justice noticed those USB-C ports are USB 2. How can this be possible. I can't imagine they would do that.

Edit: What the hell is wrong with them.

4K: Ports: One USB-C (input), three USB-C (USB 2, 480 Mbps)

5K: Ports: One Thunderbolt 3 (input), three USB-C (USB 3.1 gen 1, 5Gbps)

The USB Type-C connector has dedicated USB2.0 lanes and 4 flex lanes. Those flex lanes can be allocated to USB 3 data or Displayport or Thunderbolt.

The 4K display uses DisplayPort 1.2 alt mode on all four 4 flex lanes and USB 2.0 on the dedicated lanes. There are no lanes left for USB3 data.
The 5K display uses Thunderbolt alt mode on all 4 flex lanes but Thunderbolt 3 has enough bandwidth to supply Displayport *and* USB 3.

The reason they did the 4K display using raw DisplayPort alt mode is so that machines without Thunderbolt 3 (like the 12 inch macbook) can use it. There isn't enough bandwidth in the DisplayPort only lanes to drive a 5K display so Thunderbolt 3 is the only choice for that one.

The thing I can't figure out yet is why the 4K display is advertised as only 60W (not enough for a 15 inch MacBook Pro). Do they think that MacBook Pro users will only get the 5K display (which does 85W)??
 
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alexandero

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Apr 19, 2004
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The best way to connect something like a P2415Q would be a direct USB-C to DisplayPort cable from Mac to monitor.
Thanks a lot, your post does help a lot.

As I will need to connect to Ethernet, the display and a charger, I guess one of the two (I'm looking into the MBP w/o TouchBar) available USB-C ports will be used for the DisplayPort cable, and additionally I'll need to buy a dock that will allow charging and Ethernet. When adding the price of a second charger (I'm not willing to carry it from home to work on a daily basis), I guess I'll have to add another $150-200 for dock+charger+cable. Sigh.
 
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zaphoyd

macrumors regular
Jun 25, 2002
121
32
Wisconsin/Illinois
Thanks a lot, your post does help a lot.

As I will need to connect to Ethernet, the display and a charger, I guess one of the two (I'm looking into the MBP w/o TouchBar) available USB-C ports will be used for the DisplayPort cable, and additionally I'll need to buy a dock that will allow charging and Ethernet. When adding the price of a second charger (I'm not willing to carry it from home to work on a daily basis), I guess I'll have to add another $150-200 for dock+charger+cable. Sigh.

A thunderbolt 3 dock might be a good solution. Something like this (http://www.belkin.com/us/p/P-F4U095/) has a charger, ethernet, and a full size displayport (that you could plug a P2415Q into without extra cables).
 
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cube

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HDMI 2.0 4k@60Hz does not support 4:4:4 color, which is what you would really want with a computer.

DisplayPort has always been ahead.

DP 1.3 > TB3 > HDMI 2.0
 
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JTToft

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Apr 27, 2010
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Thanks a lot, your post does help a lot.

As I will need to connect to Ethernet, the display and a charger, I guess one of the two (I'm looking into the MBP w/o TouchBar) available USB-C ports will be used for the DisplayPort cable, and additionally I'll need to buy a dock that will allow charging and Ethernet. When adding the price of a second charger (I'm not willing to carry it from home to work on a daily basis), I guess I'll have to add another $150-200 for dock+charger+cable. Sigh.
- Yeah, those two ports are going to become limiting when connecting traditional peripherals such as a DisplayPort monitor.

For 4K 60 Hz as well as high speed peripherals such as Gigabit Ethernet and USB 3.0, you would need a Thunderbolt 3 dock. And that probably won't be available for less than $200.
 
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alexandero

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Apr 19, 2004
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For 4K 60 Hz as well as high speed peripherals such as Gigabit Ethernet and USB 3.0, you would need a Thunderbolt 3 dock. And that probably won't be available for less than $200.
Ouch, back to square one, as I only need 100Mbit Ethernet and don't have any other peripherals I'd want to connect. Seems like it will take more time to find the cheapest combination of necessary adapters. Thanks anyway.
 
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shareef777

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A thunderbolt 3 dock might be a good solution. Something like this (http://www.belkin.com/us/p/P-F4U095/) has a charger, ethernet, and a full size displayport (that you could plug a P2415Q into without extra cables).

The Belkin dock is what I'm looking at myself as it's the only one that offers full charging ability for the 15". Along with this: https://www.amazon.com/LG-34UC98-W-...r_du_8_map?ie=UTF8&qid=1477951032&sr=8-8&th=1, will give me less resolution, but a larger screen at $300 cheaper.

Plus I have the bonus of saving on USBC to USBA dongles as the dock has a couple already.
 
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inhalexhale1

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Jul 17, 2011
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The USB Type-C connector has dedicated USB2.0 lanes and 4 flex lanes. Those flex lanes can be allocated to USB 3 data or Displayport or Thunderbolt.

The 4K display uses DisplayPort 1.2 alt mode on all four 4 flex lanes and USB 2.0 on the dedicated lanes. There are no lanes left for USB3 data.
The 5K display uses Thunderbolt alt mode on all 4 flex lanes but Thunderbolt 3 has enough bandwidth to supply Displayport *and* USB 3.

The reason they did the 4K display using raw DisplayPort alt mode is so that machines without Thunderbolt 3 (like the 12 inch macbook) can use it. There isn't enough bandwidth in the DisplayPort only lanes to drive a 5K display so Thunderbolt 3 is the only choice for that one.

The thing I can't figure out yet is why the 4K display is advertised as only 60W (not enough for a 15 inch MacBook Pro). Do they think that MacBook Pro users will only get the 5K display (which does 85W)??

You're defending their choice to go with USB 2.0?
 
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cerberusss

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Aug 25, 2013
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The thing I can't figure out yet is why the 4K display is advertised as only 60W (not enough for a 15 inch MacBook Pro). Do they think that MacBook Pro users will only get the 5K display (which does 85W)??
I bet 60W is really enough for day-to-day usage of the 15". If there's not enough power, it'll dip into the battery power but who cares about that? You really have to stress that machine to let it use more than 60W. Think about it; where's that heat going to go? The fans will be screaming for hours. If you have that kind of load, you'll know it (and your colleagues will know as well).
[doublepost=1477985541][/doublepost]
You're defending their choice to go with USB 2.0?

He's explaining on a technical level why it's USB 2.0. There's no "defending", there's only explaining their choice.
 
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JTToft

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Apr 27, 2010
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He's explaining on a technical level why it's USB 2.0. There's no "defending", there's only explaining their choice.
- Except there isn't a technical reason it has to be fixed at USB 2.0. 3.1 Gen 1 is possible when driving 4K at 30 Hz, but based on the monitor's specifications they seem to have made a choice to fix it at the slower speed. I guess we'll have to wait until someone tests it to really confirm how it behaves.
 
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