Apple LED Cinema or Apple Thunderbolt Display

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by Karlov, Apr 1, 2012.

  1. Karlov macrumors member

    Mar 18, 2012
    What is the difference between the Apple LED Cinema or Apple Thunderbolt Display?
    I'm going to take one of them for watching TV
  2. simsaladimbamba

    Nov 28, 2010
    The ATD has one Firewire 800, one Gigabit Ethernet and one Thunderbolt port, while the ACD only has three USB 2.0 ports (as the ATD has too).
    At least that is what I found via a quick search.

    And the ATD only works with 2011 Macs.
    The ACD works with any (M)PD capable devices out there, of which there aren't many. Often you need powered converter boxes like the ones from Atlona.
  3. Karlov thread starter macrumors member

    Mar 18, 2012
    Thank you!
  4. Mike Boreham macrumors 65816

    Aug 10, 2006
    This somewaht undercalls the Thunderbolt display!

    The main thing about it that the single TB connection to the Mac (must be TB Mac) is also the way FW800 USB Ethernet are connected to the Mac. So you can have a bundle of connections to the TB display, instead of to the Mac, and when you want to move the mac all you have to do is unplug the one TB cable. Like a docking station. Also the TB display will charge the Mac, so no need to use the power adapter in a TB display set up.

    Also the TB display has built in speakers (don't think the ACD does?)
  5. mattkidd macrumors regular


    Aug 6, 2008
    United Kingdom England Northants
    Im currently in a cross-between deciding on which one to purchase also...

    The thunderbolt has benefits in regards to its 'dock' like functionality with USB,Gigabit,Speakers,FaceTime,Firewire 800.... all of which transfers simply over the thunderbolt connection... with also support for daisy chaining...

    My concern however lies with the fact it ONLY supports current 2011 Macs, which means using a PC,xbox, or anything is out of the question.... my concern is whether it will ever be an option, will thunderbolt come to PC's in the same way they are on the Mac? if so have apple locked the Thunderbolt display to only support Macs?

    Which is why i am considering the cinema display instead, however i don't have the functionality of the single cable and connections such as gigabit which i need :eek:
  6. whitenoise macrumors regular

    Feb 16, 2010
    +1 to mattkidd's comments.

    One of the things I was excited about was using the 27" screen as a monitor for my pc and xbox. I have also been toying with the idea of going with a cinema display just so I can buy an atlona/kanex box to add that functionality, but paying ~£1000 for this stops me. Especially since the entire point was to run one monitor, (although I'm sure I could find something to do with the two 27's ) :)

    I know that Atlona and Kanex are "working on it", but it sounds like they havent been allowed the development kits, (or whatever :p ) yet? So for me its either paying £1000 for a monitor I don't really need or keep waiting for another 6 months or more in the hopes that the thunderbolt adapters come out. Very frustrating, especially since I constantly talk myself into buying the Cinema Display then have to quickly talk myself down again! :D

    I originally thought that If the iMac had a major fault I could still make use of it as a monitor, (but that isn't an option yet). As I was typing this I thought.....can I use one iMac as a second to a newer iMac? - Just thinking for years ahead, (hopefully), when its not worth fixing a hardware fault, (if the screen is still functioning :rolleyes: ), would this an option?
  7. Raublinger macrumors newbie


    Dec 21, 2011
    I was in the same position and chose the ATD. I have had the ATD for about two weeks and the single cable docking ability is great. I have mine hooked to a MBA 13" and the display performs very well and the connectivity options are great.
  8. iKIKO macrumors regular


    Jul 30, 2011
    if your mac its 2011 or more, definitely get the ATB. its a no brainer, you will love it :D
  9. nutmac macrumors 68040

    Mar 30, 2004
    Watching TV using a Mac or other sources?

    If you intend to connect with other sources, I strongly advice NOT getting either displays. You will most likely need an upscaler (1080p to 1440p) and switch box, and even then, you will have to deal with inability to adjust image parameters (e.g., brightness).

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