A couple of screen/monitor questions for mac mini

LeeM

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jan 1, 2012
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Ive pretty much decided on a mac mini instead of a mbp, I have no need for a portable computer now I've got the iPad.

Initially I want to use the mm plugged in via hdmi to my 40" Bravia, I'll use it like a big screen for working on it as well as watching downloaded media and some big screened browsing.
But, can I also plug in a 22" VGA at a later date using the mini display to VGA adapter plugged into the thunderbolt port?
If so, can I run the VGA screen to do uni work on it while the tv is just on a normal channel then later on turn the tv to the hdmi channel and switch to the tv as the main screen? Or would I have to have one permanently set as the main screen and the other a second screen?

I've never used os x or owned a modern mac so apologies for all my questions I'm trying to work out of the mac mini will do what I want it to
 

jimboutilier

macrumors 6502a
Nov 10, 2008
647
42
Denver
Ive pretty much decided on a mac mini instead of a mbp, I have no need for a portable computer now I've got the iPad.

Initially I want to use the mm plugged in via hdmi to my 40" Bravia, I'll use it like a big screen for working on it as well as watching downloaded media and some big screened browsing.
But, can I also plug in a 22" VGA at a later date using the mini display to VGA adapter plugged into the thunderbolt port?
If so, can I run the VGA screen to do uni work on it while the tv is just on a normal channel then later on turn the tv to the hdmi channel and switch to the tv as the main screen? Or would I have to have one permanently set as the main screen and the other a second screen?

I've never used os x or owned a modern mac so apologies for all my questions I'm trying to work out of the mac mini will do what I want it to
All the minis can easily support two monitors. Directly either HDMI or thunderbolt/display port are supported. Included is an HDMI to DVI adapter too. And you could certainly use any display port adapter like the VGA one you mentioned.

The mini can sense when monitors come and go and will generally gather windows and menu bar to a remaining monitor if one goes away. But depending on how your tv is set up it at or may not turn off the HDMI port going to the mini just because you switch to another input so you many have to manually drag windows to your 22" before switching. Also the main header menu on a Mac is tied to a particular monitor and it will only appear there as long as that monitor is present unless you go into display settings and move it to another monitor. As with gathering windows if a display goes away the main header menu will move to the remaining monitor but if your tv leaves the HDMI port on when not using it to display you may need to keep the Menu associated with your monitor or move it periodically.

So if your devices are well behaved the whole thing is seamless. If not you may have to manually drag windows around or go into display settings occasionally to move your menu bar.
 

LeeM

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jan 1, 2012
603
0
its a pretty new bravia, with hdmi cec so i think when you switch off the hdmi channel it turns it off.
this is good news, gonna be buying one in the next couple of weeks i reckon
 

LeeM

macrumors 6502a
Original poster
Jan 1, 2012
603
0
also can the tv be used as an only monitor? probably wont buy another monitor for another couple of months