External Displays- what's the point?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by newmacguy88, Jun 13, 2007.

  1. newmacguy88 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2007
    #1
    I'm not trying to be critical, but what is the purpose of external displays in addition to the screen on your computer. Isn't it awkward to type while looking at a screen that isn't directly in front of you. Just curious.:confused:
     
  2. flopticalcube macrumors G4

    flopticalcube

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2006
    Location:
    In the velcro closure of America's Hat
    #2
    External keyboard?

    The answer you seek is real estate.
     
  3. gr8tfly macrumors 603

    gr8tfly

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2006
    Location:
    ~119W 34N
    #3
    Even if you continue to use the MacBook/Powerbook keyboard, you can use the internal display as primary, so it's still in front of you. Then, the external display is used as a work area. For instance, editing video - you can place your working video on the external, and keep the tools on the internal. Or, Photoshop, keeping a myriad of tools/palettes on one display and the work area on the other.

    You can adjust the virtual placement of the screens in System Preferences -> Display. For instance, if the external display is physically to the right side of your 'book, you drag the 2nd display to the right side of the main, graphically. Then, your cursor will naturally pass from one to the other like you'd expect. You can also change the primary display (main) by dragging the graphic of the menu bar from one to the other.
     
  4. dswoodley macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2002
    #4
    To paraphrase - itty bitty laptop = itty bitty screen. External displays give you the best of both worlds - portability and real estate. I also like monitor spanning. I love my setup for those reasons.
     
  5. TheAnswer macrumors 68030

    TheAnswer

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2002
    Location:
    Orange County, CA
    #5
    Yeah...if you are just typing, it's a little awkward. It's people doing graphics, video, and music work that probably have the most use for external/multiple monitors.
     
  6. munckee macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2005
    #6
    Yeah, you have to consider the external keyboard and mouse as well. For example, I do a lot of design work, but don't really need a desktop at home (I have one at work for heavy-lifting). This way I can use an external monitor, keyboard, and tablet at home and have a true desktop-like setup, but still have a portable that I can take on the road or even just use around the house.

    Of course, I use my MB in clamshell mode as well.
     
  7. kuebby macrumors 68000

    kuebby

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2007
    Location:
    SFV
    #7
    It really is just about real estate. Often while I'm using my MB I like to have a video playing on my external monitor, just for the background noise and entertainment while a page is loading or something.
     
  8. ACbc macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 14, 2007
    #8
    while real estate is a big big plus for an external display. the other important factor is color accuracy. laptop displays are no good for video, photo, layout etc if you need color accuracy to move to different media (dvd, photo prints, etc).
     
  9. greyhouse macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2007
    #9
    You can never have too much screen real estate. I have a 24" dell LCD that will be the primary monitor for my new MBP. I can run my MBP in lid-closed mode when I'm at my desk and use an external keyboard & mouse. When I want to be away from my desk, I can just grab my laptop. Best of both worlds.
     
  10. FleurDuMal macrumors 68000

    FleurDuMal

    Joined:
    May 31, 2006
    Location:
    London Town
    #10
    Kinda related to the topic, but I'm considering getting rid of my 24" Dell and replacing it with a hi-rez 17" MBP.

    Am I mad?
     
  11. newmacguy88 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 11, 2007
    #11
    Alright.:p Thanks everyone, I always wondered. I probably won't need one myself, but it's nice to know the uses.:)
     
  12. siurpeeman macrumors 603

    siurpeeman

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2006
    Location:
    the OC
    #12
    don't they have the same number of pixels? you could just get a 15" and use the dell as an external.
     
  13. FleurDuMal macrumors 68000

    FleurDuMal

    Joined:
    May 31, 2006
    Location:
    London Town
    #13
    Yep. Same number of pixels. But in the squalid little spaces in which I frequently find myself living in, space is a premium. A MBP and an external monitor actually takes up quite a lot of space. Plus there's the extra 50Gb of storage. :eek:
     
  14. dartzorichalcos macrumors 65816

    dartzorichalcos

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2007
    Location:
    Atlantis
    #14
    If you don't have enough space at your house, do it. You won't lose anything in display resolution.
     

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