Larger Screen needed = TV?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by modene1, Aug 23, 2014.

  1. modene1 macrumors newbie

    modene1

    Joined:
    May 3, 2011
    Location:
    Istanbul
    #1
    Hi folks,

    I have a MacBookPro and find that using it constantly for work and home stresses my eyes.

    I was wondering if a nice solution might be to buy a TV and connect it to my Mac. The reason I say TV instead of a large screen is the notion of killing two birds with one stone (we don't have a TV at home and watch all our TV series and movies on the Pro - I know - not ideal).

    Questions:
    1. Is connecting my Mac to a TV a good idea?
    2. What are the connectivity issues:
    - a. special cables or other hardware?
    - b. special software?

    NB: this is not an Apple TV enquiry.

    Many thanks :)
     
  2. austinpike macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2008
    Location:
    MN
    #2
    Which Macbook Pro do you have? You may be able to just connect directly to the TV with an HDMI cable. But generally TVs do not make great monitors - the text is typically not as crisp. Should work fine for video/movies though.

    First thing is to turn off overscan in your display preferences (note this will not show up unless you have a TV connected.) This is left over from CRT days. Another thing that helps is if the TV can do 1:1 pixel mapping - you would think this would be automatic, but between the computer and the monitor it can be difficult to ensure each pixel is being directly mapped to one pixel, and not being scaled ever so slightly (which will crud up the text.) Every manufacturer will call this something different, and it will be buried in the menus somewhere (if it is available at all.) Many TVs have a "PC mode" which removes most of the the smoothing/processing and should make text look somewhat better.

    You could try taking your laptop into Best Buy or wherever and plug it into various TVs and see how it looks. You'll want to have the remotes available in order to dig into the menu settings, which might be tough for the display models.
     
  3. simsaladimbamba

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2010
    Location:
    located
    #3
    Only if you use it to display moving images, meaning films or TV episodes.
    A TV is normally quite big, big pixels and such (30" for 720p, while 23" computer displays can easily display 1080p) and would make for a blurry experience when using the rest of the computer. Text is blurry, icons and buttons are blurry and so forth.

    Only an adapter from Mini DisplayPort to HDMI is required, but depending on your model, more is needed, thus the following guide with appendices should be able to help your research.

     
  4. modene1 thread starter macrumors newbie

    modene1

    Joined:
    May 3, 2011
    Location:
    Istanbul
    #4
    Great responses. Many thanks. :)

    Actually, what you're both clearly telling me is that a TV is the wrong option.

    If I understand you both correctly, I need to buy a monitor.

    Any recommendations in terms of monitor spec? Are there some key issues I need to be aware of?

    Answer to your question:
    13" Mid 2010 :: 2.4 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo :: 4 GB RAM :: NVIDIA GeForce 320M 256Mb :: OS X 10.9.4
     
  5. austinpike macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2008
    Location:
    MN
    #5
    I would look for something in a 27" 2560x1440 - it will provide a massive productivity boost over your 13" screen. If you want to go the Apple route you could get a refurbished Cinema Display (note the Cinema Display is discontinued, and the newer Thunderbolt display requires a Thunderbolt port, which your macBook does not have.)

    There plenty of other 27" monitors that will work, with screens that are just as nice for about half that price. They vary widely depending on build quality and warranty. Cheapest are the "Korean imports" with essentially no warranty, like the Qnix Evolution. Something like the Asus PB278Q or Benq GW2765HT would be higher quality with a 3-year warranty for a bit more than the Korean versions. Those are just a few of the top of my head, there are tons of other options. Whatever you get just make sure it has DisplayPort input, then all you would need is a DP -> miniDP cable to connect. If you are watching movies you might want something with speakers (DisplayPort will carry the audio signal also) - though built-in monitor speakers leave a lot to be desired.
     

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