iPad Pro as a 2nd Display

Discussion in 'iPad' started by whodatrr, Oct 21, 2015.

  1. whodatrr macrumors 6502a


    Jan 12, 2004
    Honestly, this would be my killer app. This would be the only reason I'd buy an iPad Pro, and might be the reason I'd buy two of them. Screen real estate has a bigger impact on my productivity than performance. It's hard to go from the office, where you have several large displays, to the road or set up in a dining room, the guest room, etc... where you only have a 12-13 or even 15" screen. If I could throw an iPad Pro into a bag with my rMB or a 2015 MacBook and double the pixels, I'd be thrilled!

    Yes, I know there are a few third party solutions out there... been there and tried that. Sorry, but they suck. If Apple did something so that it just worked and was supported, I'd be all over it!!!!

    Anyone else interested in this?
  2. sonicrobby macrumors 68020


    Apr 24, 2013
    New Orleans
  3. whodatrr thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Jan 12, 2004
    I don't want to diss them, and doing so wouldn't be fair since I haven''t tried it for a few months. However, there was some lag, significant CPU cost, and I bumped into stability issues. If memory serves, it was the best of the bunch. But it was still not as elegant as what I'd love to see.

    But again, that was a while back...

    What I'd love to see is Apple do this in a more elegant and better-engineered way, assuming that extended display was on elf the use cases for iPads. Ensure it's state. Ensure there's no lag. Let the iPad take some of the load, instead of bringing performance of the Macbook to a halt. Make it just work...

  4. Lobwedgephil macrumors 601


    Apr 7, 2012
    Yeah, I agree. I use Duet, there is some lag, but best option out there right now that I know of.
  5. Starfia macrumors 6502a


    Apr 11, 2011
    I'm certainly on the sidelines, and I was an Air Display 2 customer a year or two ago. (Conflicts with native AirPlay stuff made me put the hassle aside during an OS upgrade step.)

    Is Air Display 3 a contender or not, these days?
  6. thedon1 macrumors 6502

    Jun 26, 2010
    Duet is pretty reliable in my opinion. A native option would be awesome though.
  7. sjleworthy macrumors 65816


    Dec 5, 2008
    Penarth, Wales, UK
    hi guys

    i can see what Duet claims in the App Store, but how exactly will it benefit me? what exactly does it do?

    is there someone here, who uses it for small business needs, fill me in on exactly how it can benefit me and how i can use it effectively? only i cant see any use for it at the mo. think I'm missing something this morning :p

    I'm a designer (looking forward to ipp and pencil) and constantly do emails and invoicing stuff too. how can I benefit from it?

  8. yowoody macrumors newbie

    Oct 25, 2011
  9. eyeseeyou macrumors 68030

    Feb 4, 2011
    Install the duet app on your MacBook/desktop and on your iPad. Launch both apps and connect through lightening cable and voila. it's exactly like connecting a 2nd monitor to your workstation. Super crazy easy and for me personally as a designer has added a lot of value to my aging iPad Air.
  10. eyeseeyou macrumors 68030

    Feb 4, 2011
    I switched to duet since you need to be connected to a wifi network to use airdisplay. It is nice though having a wireless disPlay.
  11. pika2000 macrumors 603

    Jun 22, 2007
    Have to agree that although Duet is not great, it's the "best" one around so far. Mainly because it is wired, using USB. Any solutions that use wifi will have lag due to the nature of wifi.
  12. Macalway macrumors 68030

    Aug 7, 2013
    Duet is the iOS equivalent to Displaylink. It makes the iPad into a USB monitor. It works VERY well, and is vastly better, smoother, and more reliable than wireless.

    the downside is that like any USB monitor, it takes cpu resources, and is not very good for video or heavy bandwidth material. Also, it can't be used with a hub.
  13. whodatrr thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Jan 12, 2004

    This isn't Duet's fault, it's just the state of things with USB. Now, perhaps when Apple switches to USB-C across the board the CPU consumption and lag will be less of an issue? Or, maybe they could have done something with a lightning to Thunderbolt or USB-C cable? it'd be nice for Apple too think about this use case and do something about it.

  14. Jinzen macrumors 6502

    Oct 16, 2012
    Eh, you might say Duet works "very" well, but Duet really just works "Acceptably".

    It still lags, you still feel the difference, and there are still weird glitches and issues. Frame rate stays at 60 fps but latency skyrockets on both screens.

    So nah, it should work like connecting a second display via DisplayPort but it doesn't. Maybe not its fault, probably just USB 3/Lightning.
  15. adam9c1 macrumors 68000


    May 2, 2012
    I've used Air Display years ago and I abandoned it. It was too glitchy.

    Found Duet last year and was happy with it for the most part. Much Much better performance than anything else I've tried.
    Recently in the last several months have been using their Windows version more and more (my work machine is a PC) and it helps to have a 2nd screen on the go.

    No it's not perfect but compared to others it's the best thing there is.
    It works for my needs. I don't have media heavy content on the display.

    All I can say nice job to the devs.
  16. Starfia macrumors 6502a


    Apr 11, 2011
    Helpful, thank you.

    I found Air Display pretty darn response for wireless when I was using it (a lot of just moving the cursor and typing – I didn't need to edit video over it or anything), but still easily discernible from a true second display.

    iPad Pro, though? It seems like it's about time if Apple ever planned to support an iPad as a second display for a Mac. Mayyybe it's possible for the next major OS X and iOS, one might dare think.
  17. Atomic Walrus macrumors 6502a

    Sep 24, 2012
    Increasing the connection bandwidth could help latency and/or quality, but the reason for the CPU strain is that these systems rely on software handling of the video on both ends. You're essentially creating a video stream on your host PC (which uses CPU time to encode), broadcasting it to the iPad as a USB data stream, and then decoding/rendering it on the iPad (uses CPU time on the iPad).

    A monitor skips this because it has specialized hardware that can take HDMI/DVI/displayport data the video card is already producing and send it directly to the screen. So optimally you'd want the iPad to detect an incoming video signal and trigger a "bypass" which sends the data directly to a display controller and cuts the OS out of the loop entirely. This probably won't happen unless Apple decides that iPad Pro 2 needs to be able to act as a Cintiq (pen input monitor for other systems)
  18. whodatrr thread starter macrumors 6502a


    Jan 12, 2004
    By implementing target mode, like they did with iMacs until recently. And USB-C would support direct video, as would Thunderbolt via mini-d. Or something like that...

    Anyhow, doesn't seem to be on Apple's radar. They could easily implement, but have no interest in doing so. But I am keeping an eye out for low-end droid or Win 10 tablets and such that'd offer this.

  19. Atomic Walrus macrumors 6502a

    Sep 24, 2012
    I know that Wacom's Companion 2 has this functionality, but I wouldn't recommend it as a general tablet unless you actually wanted a Cintiq. It's really expensive and not a great tablet beyond its pen input quality.
  20. eyeseeyou macrumors 68030

    Feb 4, 2011
    I think if you're mobile and need to use your iPad as a 2nd display duet more than does the job.
  21. andyw715 macrumors 65816

    Oct 25, 2013
    This is my use case. Web dev work with at least 2 monitors is a must. Its nice to be able to stick the iPad in the laptop bag and have a second monitor without needing a bulky display cord and power cord/brick.

    Even better with iPad Pro's screen size.
  22. eyeseeyou macrumors 68030

    Feb 4, 2011
    Actually added a lot of value to my ipad air 1 although I do have a usb monitor that I don't use that could also do the job.
  23. Macalway macrumors 68030

    Aug 7, 2013
    Ok back to this thread :)

    Apparently (wishful thinking?) The Pro has USB 3. Now, this would be awesome for Duet, right?

    I'm just not going to hold my breath for this one :D

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22 October 21, 2015