Connecting MBA with external monitor

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by hohohong, May 30, 2009.

  1. hohohong macrumors 6502

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    #1
    I just got a Samsung 2333sw monitor. When I plug into my 128GB SSD Rev B, it automatically uses the samsung as 2nd monitor. The screen is fully covered.

    But when I select mirror (using the samsung as primary screen and turned the brightness of my MBA to the lowest), the samsung LCD picture is not clear and the screen is like 4:3.

    Does this means that MBA can't support ext LCD as primary screen at 1080 resolution?

    How about for those who has the new Apple 24" Cinema display? Can you use that as primary screen?
     

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  2. r6girl Administrator/Editor

    r6girl

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    #2
    I have no problems with my 20" Apple Cinema Display and my MBA Rev. B. I use the ACD as my main display and the MBA is an extended desktop. The display is set to the maximum resolution available in the Display settings pane: 1680 x 1050.

    The MBA can drive the 30" cinema displays, so yours should not be a problem. Check your display preferences settings...
     
  3. stoconnell macrumors 6502

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    #3
    By selecting mirror, the video output is set to display both on the LCD (1280x800) and the external monitor at 1280x800. The problem is 1280x800 is not the native resolution of the external monitor and so looks like crap (technical term ;) ).

    If you want the external as your only monitor, you need to hook up a keyboard and mouse, put the machine to sleep (close lid) and then wake it up. It will figure things out.
     
  4. hohohong thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #4
    Thanks for your reply. BTW, I like your avatar! Is that you?

    I have played with all possible setting in the system preference as well as my Samsung. Still the same. My initial thought is maybe MBA is not capable for supporting 1080.

    Do you use mirror? When i choose mirror, it still allow me to choose 1920x1080 but it's not full screen and image is not clear and sharp.
     
  5. hohohong thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #5
    Ah!!! Fool the Air,... going to try it now,... will report in 10 min~!
     
  6. stoconnell macrumors 6502

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    #6
    You many need to adjust the resolution once you are in clam shell mode (lid closed).
     
  7. r6girl Administrator/Editor

    r6girl

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    #7
    No problem. That avatar is me – well, at least a manga version of me. :p

    Stoconnell is right about mirroring. I just tried mirroring and it made my main display look terrible. Just uncheck the mirroring box in the Arrangement tab of the Display preferences. Then you can choose a better resolution for your display.
     
  8. hohohong thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #8
    It keeps on turing itself on and off,..... I can use it for a few sec at full screen and clear,... but after a few sec, my samsung lost signal (MBA goes to sleep mode), but turn back on as I use my mouse or keyboard for only for a few sec.

    Any setting i should be aware of?
     
  9. stoconnell macrumors 6502

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    #9
    Hmm.. is your MBA plugged in or on battery? Sounds like an overly aggressive power saving regime is being used. Also, are you using USB mouse/keyboard or blue tooth? Did you uncheck mirror monitor?

    I know there are folks that use their MBAs in this mode all the time, and I do this with my MBP at work. I have a pair mini displayport adapters on order from monoprice, so I should have a better feel for this on this particular machine some time in the next week or so.
     
  10. hohohong thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #10
    Ok,.... I plug the AC into my Air,... and it seems to work now,... knock on wood.

    Does the power supply has to do with it? Doesn't work when you're on battery?
     
  11. stoconnell macrumors 6502

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    #11
    I think you have to adjust your power management settings for when you are on battery in that configuration, but it's probably not worth it as the default behavior is probably right for most situations.

    Glad you were able to get it to work. Is this the behavior that you were after? r6girl rightly points out that you can swap which display is the "main one", leaving both in their native resolutions, in the display preferences setting and leave the machine open.
     
  12. hohohong thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #12
    For some reason, it's not as clear as 24" ACD

    Everytime when i go to Apple store, I was awe by the clear sharp image of 24" ACD.

    But when I plug in a 23" Samsung LCD at max resolution of 1920*1080, it's not as clear as 24" ACD in apple store. Is it coz it's higher than 1920*1080 in apple store? I think it's plug into mac mini (does mini has higher than 1080 resolution?)
     
  13. hohohong thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #13
    And when i plug that samsung to my PC, the picture is as clear as 24" ACD... what gives?
     
  14. stoconnell macrumors 6502

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    #14
    The LED Cinema Display has a max resolution of 1920x1200. Looking online, it looks like the Samsung 2333SW supports upto 1920x1080. Since this monitor doesn't say it has an LED backlight, I am guessing it is using the CCFL backlight. Given the price point, it is not LED. That's not to knock it as it's about $660 less than the Apple monitor.
     
  15. hohohong thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #15
    But when i plug the samsung to my PC, it's as clear as 24" ACD
     
  16. stoconnell macrumors 6502

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    #16
    Are you using DVI or VGA input with the Air? Also, you may need to do some color calibration, etc .. are you using the 2.2 gamma setting?

    Are you basing clarity on fonts? PCs and Macs will look different even on the same monitor and displaying the same web page, etc
     
  17. hohohong thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #17
    Yeah,... i was using 2.2 gamma,... should i change back to 1.8?

    And mini display port to DVI.
     
  18. stoconnell macrumors 6502

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    #18
    Nah. I think 1.8 is a little too washed out. Did you double check that you are using 2.2 on the external? I think it's a per monitor setting.

    I just wanted to see if it was perhaps a DVI vs. VGA issue.
     
  19. Scottsdale macrumors 601

    Scottsdale

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    #19
    I would advise you dump the non-ACD and buy an ACD! Seriously, they are beautiful and the perfect match for an MBA.
     
  20. Unprocessed1 macrumors 65816

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    #20
    Is that a joke? He's satisfied with his monitor and it's $600 less...
     
  21. Scottsdale macrumors 601

    Scottsdale

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    #21
    I have never seen a display as amazing as the 24" LED backlit Apple Cinema Display. Another thing, it works perfect with the MBA... just like a docking station. And there are no problems with connections.
     
  22. Unprocessed1 macrumors 65816

    Unprocessed1

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    #22
    Not everyone can afford an $899 display it's a VERY high price to pay for just a monitor.

    The extra $600 can be better spent on better things, like paying bills, getting an SSD, or upgrading RAM. Just got an 23inch HP ($260) monitor and it looks amazing, as do the Samsung monitors. It would have been a complete waste to spend an extra 700+ on a freaking monitor, when you can still get great quality for a low price!

    Sure the ACD is LED and is an amazing screen, but it terms of quality and price, to 95% of consumer it's a complete rip-off for the price.
     
  23. hohohong thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #23
    Trust me,.... i was seriously considering 24 ACD. $900 plus the $100 dual link cable is a little beyond reach for me.

    My samsung 2333sw is only $148 after tax from dell.com, that's 675% less than the 24 ACD (ACD 24" costs $929 more after 9% tax).

    If I win a lotto today, i'll have everything Mac.
     
  24. benlangdon macrumors 65832

    benlangdon

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    #24
    http://www.monoprice.com/products/p...09&cs_id=1020902&p_id=2408&seq=1&format=6#faq


    i have this one, and no i do not need it for my 19in 1680 x 1050 monitor, but it was cheap and this thing is massive, i mean the cable is half an inch thick and the round cylanders on the end (forgot what they are called) are an inch and half thick.

    wow i had already calibrated my screen (expert mode) and i just went through the non expert and did 2.2, wow. completely washed out at 1.8, jebus that was amazing.

    can not wait to change the setting on my external monitor. im waiting to set it all back up when i get my monitor mount :D
     
  25. stoconnell macrumors 6502

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    #25
    You don't need a dual link adapter for the 24" ACD as it has a built-in mini displayport connector as well as USB and a magsafe power port. Literally you just plunk your mini-displayport laptop down next to it and you get video, power, audio, and USB hub (which supports Apple external DVD drive).

    The dual link is only need for the 30" Cinema Display.
     

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