How do I connect 2 HDMI Monitors to my MacBook Pro?

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by savie, Mar 20, 2013.

  1. savie macrumors newbie

    Mar 20, 2013
    I want to use my MacBook Pro (early 2011, Software OS X 10.8.2) and connect 2 Phillips 26" 720p LED HDTV's to it... basically I want one big screen/extend my display across 2-3 screens (if I can use my MacBook Pro as a third screen, awesome, if not - no big deal - the 2 26" Monitors are sufficient).

    Right now, I have 1 Monitor hooked up to my MacBook Pro and can use both the 1 Monitor's screen and the screen on my MacBook. I'm currently using a Rocketfish Adapter & 1 HDMI cord (I bought a 2 pack and haven't been able to make use of the second one).

    My question is: what do I need to order to make both Monitors display 1 extended screen from my MacBook, and I also want the quality on the screen to be pretty decent (right now the quality is mediocre coming from the cheapest HDMI cord I could get at Best Buy). I need to use this set up for graphics, web, etc.

    - The attached pic is basically what I am looking to do -
    Help please! & thanks! :D

    Attached Files:

    • 1.jpg
      File size:
      131 KB
  2. paulrbeers macrumors 68040

    Dec 17, 2009
    I'd recommend using something like this:

    It would be much faster than any USB video adapter.
  3. savie thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 20, 2013
    Funny I finally found that Matrox site after posting this thread (which has in turn been after endless hours of research). I almost purchased it, but at $180 I need to know if it is exactly what I am looking for! Guess there's only one way to find out... would love to hear from someone with hands-on experience ?
  4. jdechko macrumors 68040

    Jul 1, 2004
    I'd actually recommend against the Matrox products in this case. If you read the description, it actually makes both monitors appear as one monitor.

    So (2) monitors @ 1920x1200 show up as a single 3840x1200 monitor.

    What Giuly suggested would actually give you 2 separate 1920x1200 monitors.

    In your case, it would be 720p monitors, but you get the point.
  5. paulrbeers macrumors 68040

    Dec 17, 2009
    Explain why this would be worse? The only dissadvantage is that you can't do 1920 x 2400 (meaning you can't "stack" two monitors on top of each other). Otherwise, every setup I've ever seen is having two monitors side by side so it basically gives you 3820 x 1200 or 2560 x 720 or whatever.

    Using a USB VGA adapters are extremely slow especially on USB 2.0. That's not a lot of bandwidth to provide a good experience.
  6. jdechko macrumors 68040

    Jul 1, 2004
    I never said it would be worse. I suppose it comes down to personal preference though and is largely dependent on your workflow and intended results.

    For instance, full screen apps (whether we are talking about Lion full screen or Windows-style full screen) are going to function differently depending on what type of setup you have. When I'm doing CAD work, I prefer to have a drawing full-screen on one monitor and all palettes and reference work on another monitor.

    Movies for another. It's much easier with discrete monitors to put a movie onto its own screen and to go full screen.

    Having discrete monitors also allows for flexibility in placement (including bezel sizes). Not to mention flexibility in upgrading, he could choose to upgrade 1 monitor at a time and he wouldn't suffer from having mismatching resolutions.

    Personally, that's enough disadvantages to steer me to something like a DisplayLink (USB to something) adapter.

    Maybe not for gaming or movies, but likely good enough for text-based activities (web browsing, coding, word processing, chat, iTunes).
  7. Giuly, Mar 21, 2013
    Last edited: Mar 21, 2013

    Giuly macrumors 68040


  8. macman312, Mar 11, 2015
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2015

    macman312 macrumors 6502

    Oct 10, 2010
    Melbourne, Australia --> Cincinnati,OH
    Thought I'd continue on from this thread. I have a early 2011 15" Macbook pro with a samsung S23B350 and I want to buy something similar to have 2 monitors plugged in.

    At the moment I am just tossing up options but one thing is I don't want to spend more than $50 on an adapter... The adapter suggested above at $170 is way to much as I am likely to replace this computer soon in fact with the launch of the new Macbook replacing it soon is extremely tempting.

    Does everyone know if this would work?

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