Buying a display..

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by ShaneBunting, Oct 19, 2013.

  1. ShaneBunting Suspended

    Aug 10, 2009
    United Kingdom
    In December, I'm planning on buying an external display for my 11" MacBook Air, and a Magic Mouse to go with it - I already have an Apple wireless keyboard.

    Also, a Time Capsule 2TB for convenient, reliable backup.

    But I have no idea what monitor to look for or what aspects make a good monitor?!

    Any help would be great
  2. iAppl3Fan macrumors 6502a


    Sep 8, 2011
    The best monitor for a mac is the Thunderbolt Display. The worst mouse is the Magic Mouse. You're better off with the Magic TrackPad.
  3. theluggage macrumors 68040

    Jul 29, 2011
    Basic choices:

    Apple TB display:

    + Lovely high-def (2560x1440) 27" display
    + Adds extra webcam, microphone half-decent speaker system, Ethernet, Firewire, extra USB2 ports with just one cable.
    + Includes a Magsafe PSU for your laptop.
    - Expensive
    - Some people hate glossy, glass-fronted displays
    - USB2, not USB3
    - Loses some of its Unique Selling Points If you don't use Firewire or Ethernet.
    - Restricted tilt/swivel & no height adjustment.
    - Will (probably) only ever work with post-2011 Macs. Forget plugging in your PC, XBox, Bluray Player etc.

    ...may have been updated by December, but don't hold your breath.

    Third-party 27" 2560x1440 displays: Lots of options from Dell and others discussed elsewhere in this forum.

    + Comparable image quality to Apple TBD
    + Substantially cheaper
    + Anti-glare versions available
    + Tilt/swivel/height/pivot adjustment usually better than TBD.
    + Lots of inputs for different equipment
    - No Magsafe, no Ethernet, No Firewire, No webcam, no microphones, no speakers (mostly - some have optional soundbars).
    - USB hub needs an extra cable, lots of reports of "USB3" hubs not working well.

    ~ Look for one with DisplayPort input and get a MiniDisplayPort to DisplayPort cable: otherwise you'll need the (expensive) Dual Link DVI adapter (not the regular one).

    Third party 24" 1920x1200 display (My recommendation: Dell U2412M)
    + Decent size, decent resolution much easier on the wallet
    ~ Use either Displayport cable or regular DVI adapter
    +/- everything else said about third-party 27" screens

    Third party ??" 1080p monitor or TV
    + Cheap, big screens. Great for gaming.
    - Relatively low resolution - larger (27"+) screens of this type sound like a bargain but will look blocky when used as a desktop monitor.
    ~ Use HDMI adapter

    Personal recommendation is the Dell 2412M (24") - but I'm pairing it with a 17" MacBook Pro on a riser stand, so I get a dual-screen setup. With an 11" Air, the internal screen isn't going to be so hot, so I'd look at 27" options.

    Minor warning: some third party DisplayPort & HDMI monitors have a glitch with some Macs. Check before buying, but if you get stuck with one see the fix here.

    Seconded about the Tragic Mouse - although some people seem to like them.
    I do like the Magic Trackpad for general use, but there are still some things (graphics, games) that need a mouse.

    (For benefit of original poster) pretty much any USB, Wireless+USB transmitter or Bluetooth mouse will work with a Mac. Go to a real shop and find one that feels comfortable.
  4. Fishrrman macrumors G5


    Feb 20, 2009
    My opinion, and mine only.

    I would recommend that you DO NOT buy an Apple mouse. Instead, try out some Logitech mice (office supply stores might be a good place to do that). Apple's mice may look snazzy, but third-party offerings are far better designed and more useful.

    I would also recommend that you DO NOT buy a Time Capsule. They have a history of failing due to overheating -- because Apple tends to design for "style", and not substance, they neglected cooling with the Time Capsule design.

    You'd do far better to buy a 3rd-party external drive, and then use CarbonCopyCloner or SuperDuper to create and maintain a bootable "clone" of your internal drive.

    As far as displays go, you have to first decide what size you want. Then, start reading reviews and doing research.
    Again, I would NOT recommend a Thunderbolt display at this time. The product is aging, hasn't been updated, and remains WAY overpriced. Educate yourself, and you will do MUCH better.
  5. MCAsan macrumors 601


    Jul 9, 2012
    We love our rMBPs hooked up to ATDs via Thunderbolt that multiples the audio, video, and either net connections. Also it lets hookup LaCie 2Big arrays for large fast storage.

    Our wifi is via a new 3TB Time Capsule that has a new Extreme as an extender. This beam-forming combo also does Time Machine backups. Could not be happier with the wifi network.

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