Do you use an external monitor? 13" v 15"

nStyle

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Dec 6, 2009
1,149
282
I have a 13" rMBP and I find it a bit too small to use the small screen exclusively. Thus, I have a 27" Thunderbolt Display. In some ways, I'm trading a superior screen for a larger screen (though the net effect seems to be better since 1440p is still fine and the same goes for screen accuracy)

I owned a 15" rMBP but that was back when I still had a desktop PC. I got rid of the desktop in order to consolidate as I really dislike having more than one computer as things get fragmented too easily. Anyway, the 15" was too big for travel which was what I primarily used my laptops for anyway, so I sold it in favor of the 13".

I'm somewhat of a minimalist. I'm thinking now I could *possibly* get by with just the 15". I won't really save any money. In fact, I may end up spending more. But, I'll get a larger screen (than the 13"), dedicated GPU, faster processor, more storage, etc. The 15" retina screen definitely is amazing, even in comparison to the 13" variant. I couldn't justify trading my 13" for the 15" solely as I don't particularly *need* more power, but I just thought I might be able to kill 2 birds with one stone.

Anyway, just wondering if any of you all get by with just a laptop and don't worry with an external monitor?
 

dagamer34

macrumors 65816
May 1, 2007
1,359
101
Houston, TX
I use just a 15" at work. 2012 model can't drive a 4K display at 60Hz so I don't bother hooking anything up to it. At home, I have a retina iMac with far more space.

Can't really answer your question unless we know what you're doing with your laptop. I work fine on my 15" doing coding, but any time I need large screen space for app layout, it's not terribly pleasant (still not bad enough to get a 2nd monitor though).
 

0983275

Suspended
Mar 15, 2013
472
56
Yep, when I'm not out, it's always connected to a monitor (see sig)

Considering on getting a 2560x1440 or higher monitor, having the extra screen estate would be nice, I just need to look around for a decent and affordable monitor.

I run 1920x1200 on my 13" rMBP (can be done with tools like Pupil or ScreenResX), still looks nice even if it's not scaled/native, pixel density of the screen helps here, and since it's not scaled, the lag associated with the retina scaling settings isn't there.
 
Last edited:

stu.h

macrumors 65816
May 8, 2010
1,127
203
West Midlands, England.
I've just sold my Late 2013 13" rMBP and Thunderbolt Display.
I've bought the new 2015 15" w/dGPU And an Acer B326HK 32" 4k monitor.
I like the portability and also the real estate of 3840x2160 (none scaled hence me getting the 32") when doing longer pieces of work.
I used to hate working on the MacBook for a while, then going to the TBD, it looked terrible.
 

yjchua95

macrumors 604
Apr 23, 2011
6,725
231
GVA, KUL, MEL (current), ZQN
I have a 13" rMBP and I find it a bit too small to use the small screen exclusively. Thus, I have a 27" Thunderbolt Display. In some ways, I'm trading a superior screen for a larger screen (though the net effect seems to be better since 1440p is still fine and the same goes for screen accuracy)

I owned a 15" rMBP but that was back when I still had a desktop PC. I got rid of the desktop in order to consolidate as I really dislike having more than one computer as things get fragmented too easily. Anyway, the 15" was too big for travel which was what I primarily used my laptops for anyway, so I sold it in favor of the 13".

I'm somewhat of a minimalist. I'm thinking now I could *possibly* get by with just the 15". I won't really save any money. In fact, I may end up spending more. But, I'll get a larger screen (than the 13"), dedicated GPU, faster processor, more storage, etc. The 15" retina screen definitely is amazing, even in comparison to the 13" variant. I couldn't justify trading my 13" for the 15" solely as I don't particularly *need* more power, but I just thought I might be able to kill 2 birds with one stone.

Anyway, just wondering if any of you all get by with just a laptop and don't worry with an external monitor?
At home, I have a Dell S2240L 21.5" display for my 13" rMBP. My 15" rMBP is hooked up to a 32" Sharp PN-K322B 10-point multitouch 4K display.

In my office, there's a 27" TB display for each of my rMBPs.

But I could've managed with the 15" rMBP not being hooked up to anything if I wanted to.
 

nStyle

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Dec 6, 2009
1,149
282
I've just sold my Late 2013 13" rMBP and Thunderbolt Display.
I've bought the new 2015 15" w/dGPU And an Acer B326HK 32" 4k monitor.
I like the portability and also the real estate of 3840x2160 (none scaled hence me getting the 32") when doing longer pieces of work.
I used to hate working on the MacBook for a while, then going to the TBD, it looked terrible.
I have the exact same setup (2013 13" and TBD). Do you think you could use just the 15" with a stand or something?

I too think the 13" is a little too small to get some serious work done. It's great for portability though. Tradeoffs!
 

ckeck

macrumors 6502a
Jul 29, 2005
711
62
Texas
Considering on getting a 2560x1440 or higher monitor, having the extra screen estate would be nice, I just need to look around for a decent and affordable monitor.
Dell U2715H is an incredible 1440p monitor. Great panel, sleek design and can't go wrong with a premium panel guarantee. Not the cheapest but not too outlandish either.
 

Toutou

macrumors 6502a
Jan 6, 2015
673
957
Prague, Czech Republic
My 13" rMBP is my one and only computer (college student), so I have a nice 23" FullHD monitor (via HDMI) for movies and browsing, but I find pretty much everything doable on the MacBook (1440x900 scaled). Coding, photo editing, Minecraft, you name it.
 

maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
66,786
33,746
Boston
I have an apple cinema display that I use with my rMBP. Its at this point more of a "desktop" computer since I use my Surface Pro 3 for my mobility needs. Even before the SP3, I had my rMB hooked up to a monitor.
 

tyzjames

macrumors newbie
Jun 2, 2015
10
0
Ive got the new AMD 2015 15" rMBP and I use it with a 23" Dell via HDMI. However, when I plug it in, the fans starts to become audible, and somewhat annoying. Is that normal?
 

McDLT

macrumors regular
Feb 11, 2006
138
115
Dell U2715H is an incredible 1440p monitor. Great panel, sleek design and can't go wrong with a premium panel guarantee. Not the cheapest but not too outlandish either.
Is there a hub that you recommend to go with it? I am in the market for a display. Love the all in one aspect of the apple thunderbolt but cant being myself to buy it with the old tech in it.
 
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