External display woes

chaseychasem

macrumors regular
Original poster
Aug 4, 2012
137
0
So I purchased a MacBook Pro in August with the intention of primarily docking at home, with the added convenience of going mobile a couple of times a week (plus travel), all without needing to synchronize files. Ten months later I have yet to realize a docking setup for 4-5 days out of the week. An HP monitor rendered blurry text, the ATD screen never woke when my computer did, and now the Dell U2713HM has gone into a sleep/wake/sleep/wake death loop whenever I open or close the MBP, rather than cooperate with clamshell mode. This evening I bumped my computer and/or pressed the wrong key, and suddenly both monitor and computer were sleeping and then awake, but linked in display-sharing mode, rather than clamshell mode. I can't get them back to the latter.

My question, then, has two parts. First, is this clamshell flakiness typical, particularly with a third-party monitor (not that an ATD was any better, in my case)? Second, and more broadly, is this nonsense really worth it? I don't know that I've saved money by investing in a high-end monitor plus MBP, rather than going for an iMac/MBA combo.

EDIT: lolz, MBP had come unplugged, hence the clamshell flakiness. But I'd still be interested to hear your thoughts in regard to my second question.
 
Last edited:

EricT43

macrumors regular
Oct 5, 2011
193
1
So I purchased a MacBook Pro in August with the intention of primarily docking at home, with the added convenience of going mobile a couple of times a week (plus travel), all without needing to synchronize files. Ten months later I have yet to realize a docking setup for 4-5 days out of the week. An HP monitor rendered blurry text, the ATD screen never woke when my computer did, and now the Dell U2713HM has gone into a sleep/wake/sleep/wake death loop whenever I open or close the MBP, rather than cooperate with clamshell mode. This evening I bumped my computer and/or pressed the wrong key, and suddenly both monitor and computer were sleeping and then awake, but linked in display-sharing mode, rather than clamshell mode. I can't get them back to the latter.

My question, then, has two parts. First, is this clamshell flakiness typical, particularly with a third-party monitor (not that an ATD was any better, in my case)? Second, and more broadly, is this nonsense really worth it? I don't know that I've saved money by investing in a high-end monitor plus MBP, rather than going for an iMac/MBA combo.

EDIT: lolz, MBP had come unplugged, hence the clamshell flakiness. But I'd still be interested to hear your thoughts in regard to my second question.
I have also had some issues using 3rd party monitors connected via HDMI. Sleep and clamshell mode were hit-or-miss for me. Have you considered the Apple Thunderbolt Display? Currently I use the ATD at home and I have no issues. I used to have an iMac and 13" MBP, but I sold them both in favor of the 15" rMBP with the ATD, and I am very happy with this setup. Having two computers was kind of a hassle in my opinion. Now I have the best of both worlds - a nice, big display when I'm home, with my fancy keyboard and mouse hooked up, and when I travel I take my computer with me.
 

glenthompson

macrumors 68000
Apr 27, 2011
1,929
128
Florida
.

My question, then, has two parts. First, is this clamshell flakiness typical, particularly with a third-party monitor (not that an ATD was any better, in my case)? Second, and more broadly, is this nonsense really worth it? I don't know that I've saved money by investing in a high-end monitor plus MBP, rather than going for an iMac/MBA combo.

EDIT: lolz, MBP had come unplugged, hence the clamshell flakiness. But I'd still be interested to hear your thoughts in regard to my second question.
I've never had any problem with running my MBP in clamshell mode with an old 23" ACD. I don't remember what my settings for sleep are but I think it doesn't sleep when on AC. I have the display set to sleep.

Have you tried resetting the SMC while in clamshell mode? Something may be set wrong.
 

chaseychasem

macrumors regular
Original poster
Aug 4, 2012
137
0
Thanks for your responses. The clamshell flakiness seems to have stemmed from the fact that I'd knocked the MagSafe out of the MBP without realizing it last night. Behavior was back to normal once the latter was properly powered again. As for the ATD, I gave it a whirl, as mentioned, but between the gloss (which I approached with an open mind yet couldn't get over) and the wake/sleep bugginess (AppleCare was stumped), it was a no-go. Things are humming along today with the U2713HM, though I'm going to call a rep about backlight bleed and a general yellow tinge to the display.