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pax-eterna

macrumors regular
Original poster
Feb 24, 2022
169
22
As we know the M2 mini can run graphics out the USB-C port instead of the HDMI. I have been reading elsewhere that the image quality from the USB-C port is better quality than the HDMI, so I thought I would ask here to get the truth of it.
 

FreakinEurekan

macrumors 603
Sep 8, 2011
5,263
2,374
Depends on the display, and the resolution, and on your port requirements. I use HDMI so as not to block a USB-C port.
 

pax-eterna

macrumors regular
Original poster
Feb 24, 2022
169
22
Thanks it is a 4k display, but sadly only 60 refresh rate max...cannot do any better as I have researched the model and that is all it can do. Didn't realise when I bought it that some makers restricted refresh rates to that maximum, I naively thought all makes of 4k could be adjusted. Hence my interest in the question, particularly when it comes to gaming on the M2 mini.
 

HobeSoundDarryl

macrumors G4
4K at 60 means you could readily use either. As #2 suggests, HDMI may be the better choice to simply keep more USB ports free... UNLESS the monitor you chose has a built-in hub and then you'll need a USB connection to use the hub too. While not absolute, HDMI might be thought of as a ONE-WAY video transmission from computer to monitor, while the various Thunderbolt/USB connections are (often) TWO-WAY (transfer the video signal and receive back data, etc from a monitor hub).

So if you have a monitor hub that you want to use, use USB. If you purely want 4K 60 only TO the monitor, use a good HDMI cable.
 

traderdude123

macrumors member
May 12, 2023
69
46
mage quality from the USB-C port is better quality than the HDMI,
I have a Sony A95L connected to mac mini m2. I certainly get better colors when i use the usbc-hdmi adapter. The mac instantly switches to RGB 10 bit and colors are great.

If i use a direct hdmi-hdmi cable , i get YUV 444 and the colors are not that great. If i want RGB over hdmi, i have to go through loops and its still not great.

I have done extensive testing with both type of connections and i used the same HDMI cable with the adapter(usbc-hdmi) and with out adapter(hdmi-hdmi).

Certainly prefer the usb-c connection to the TV.

For some reason usb-c is highly optimized by macos, don't know why. probably because it's been there longer than the hdmi on macs.

If you have the choice , always got with usb-c.

and btw i get 4k 120hz 10 bit RGB instantly out of box with the usbc-hdmi adapter. Lot of issues getting the same with direct hdmi connection.
 
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pax-eterna

macrumors regular
Original poster
Feb 24, 2022
169
22
Thanks folks - I wonder if the monitor is only restricted to 60hz in HDMI mode? Might try using the USB-C and see what happens! the M2 Mac mini has four USB-C ports (sorry, neglected to add it is the M2 Pro) and in my situation there is usually at least one free at all times.
 

pax-eterna

macrumors regular
Original poster
Feb 24, 2022
169
22
If the monitor you own is 60hz, there's generally not going to be some secret tweak to make it >60hz.
haha, no I didn't REALLY think there would be....just thought Samsung may have had a different set of operating instructions for USB-C as apposed to HDMI is all
 

Bazza1

macrumors 6502a
May 16, 2017
676
503
Toronto, Canada
I had an issue (apparently, a random 'known issue' Apple is aware of) where - when my monitor was connected via the Mini's HDMI - the screen would simply black out. No rhyme or reason, and after several moments - length of time also random - it would restore. Solution was to connect monitor via USB-C port on Mini - issue gone immediately.

You'd think Apple would have a grasp on HDMI by now, but apparently not.
 
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manwichmakesameal

macrumors newbie
Jan 24, 2022
1
1
I had an issue (apparently, a random 'known issue' Apple is aware of) where - when my monitor was connected via the Mini's HDMI - the screen would simply black out. No rhyme or reason, and after several moments - length of time also random - it would restore. Solution was to connect monitor via USB-C port on Mini - issue gone immediately.

You'd think Apple would have a grasp on HDMI by now, but apparently not.
I had this EXACT same issue with my last Mini. It wouldn't go black though but kind of static-ey. My AppleTV 4k has done it a couple times too. It has never done it on anything connected via USBC.
 
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dwig

macrumors 6502a
Jan 4, 2015
899
443
Key West FL
haha, no I didn't REALLY think there would be....just thought Samsung may have had a different set of operating instructions for USB-C as apposed to HDMI is all
This would be possible, but it's not a particularily likely arrangement. Generally speaking, the monitor's specs will be the same for all inputs, though there may be exceptions out there.
 
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