Connecting Macbook Pro to Monitor

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by hmc07, May 29, 2015.

  1. hmc07 macrumors newbie

    May 29, 2015
    New Zealand
    Total newbie at this, please explain as simply as possible.

    I have a MacBook Pro (Retina, 13-inch, Late 2013).

    I would like to buy a monitor to use along side my laptop. I am thinking of purchasing AOC 23.6" Full HD LED Monitor. I don't know where to go from there.
    What do I use to connect them together?
    Am I able to use them both at the same time, like a split screen.. (e.g. panels/windows and stuff on the macbook, photography screen and working image on the monitor)?
    Do I use the Macbook keyboard with the monitor, or do I need a new keyboard all together? Does it have to be an Apple keyboard?

    If somebody can direct me to a link or explain how to do this so I can get started researching what I need to buy, its much appreciated!

    Thank you :)
  2. mcarling macrumors 65816

    Oct 22, 2009
    Make the connection to the monitor using DisplayPort if your monitor supports it. If your monitor does not support DisplayPort, then use HDMI.

    Yes, you can use both screens together. In the System Preferences app, Displays, you can arrange them the way you want.

    You can use either the MBP's built-in keyboard or you can use any USB or Bluetooth keyboard.

    I use Apple's USB keyboard with numeric keypad plus Apple's Magic Trackpad with my mid-2015 15" MBP. This allows me to leave my MBP closed and use only a pair of attached 4K monitors.
  3. snaky69 macrumors 603

    Mar 14, 2008
    I numbered your questions for ease of answering.

    1. I googled the screen to answer that one. There are many ways you could connect that particular monitor. I personally would recommend this type of cable(that particular one is 3ft long, you may need longer):

    2. Of course, just like on any other modern computer.

    3. You can, but ergonomically it may bother you in the long run. I would recommend buying a keyboard and mouse simply for comfort.

    4. Of course not. A Mac is just a regular PC in a pretty case that can run OS X. Any USB, bluetooth or wireless keyboard and mouse will work with it.
  4. hmc07 thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 29, 2015
    New Zealand
    Thank You

    Thank you both, that's really helped me.
    The monitor I originally posted was unavailable in my nearest stores, so I will go with another. I will also try the HDMI cable first, since I already have one.
    And will see how I go with the MBP Keyboard too before purchasing a new one (though they aren't too expensive).

    Thank you :)
  5. mcarling macrumors 65816

    Oct 22, 2009
    I'm happy with the Dell 24" 4K P2415Q monitors. I'm driving two of them with my mid-2015 15" MBP. I paid about $430 each from Amazon, with free shipping.

    If you like the Retina display of your MBP, get a 4K monitor.
  6. BoojumBoy macrumors newbie

    Nov 27, 2015
  7. SDAVE macrumors 68040


    Jun 16, 2007
    Honestly, the Thunderbolt display is such a convenience that it doesn't make sense getting a different monitor when you can get a really well taken care of (used or refurb) for around $450-500. The single cable gives you ethernet, firewire (if needed), USB 2.0 (not 3.0 unfortunately) and an additional TB port...and lets not forget charging (You will need the MagSafe to MagSafe 2 adapter, which is $10 on ebay).

    Fact of the matter is 4k monitors or other brand monitors like Dell don't have the same gamut as the Apple displays. And your rMBP and Thunderbolt display color will match perfectly, not so with the Dell monitor.

    So in other words, look into the Thunderbolt 27" monitors. I bought a perfect condition one for $450 off craigslist.

    Of course it would've been nice if it was a Retina monitor, but once Apple makes one, it will definitely be worth it. I don't like the Dell's coating on their monitors and they're always ugly and plastic with ports placed in inconvenient locations.

    My two cents.

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