Late 2012 MBA - Two external (non Apple) monitors possible?

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by mattwolfmatt, Dec 31, 2013.

  1. mattwolfmatt, Dec 31, 2013
    Last edited: Jan 1, 2014

    mattwolfmatt macrumors 65816

    mattwolfmatt

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2008
    #1
    I have a late 2012 MBA, with one Thunderbolt port. I'd like to connect two external monitors to it (neither of them are thunderbolt monitors, I'll use mini display port to DVI adapters).

    Is this possible? I'm willing to buy a dock, it looks like either the Belkin or the CalDigit may do it.

    Thanks all!
     
  2. Boyd01 macrumors 68040

    Boyd01

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2012
    Location:
    New Jersey Pine Barrens
    #2
  3. mattwolfmatt thread starter macrumors 65816

    mattwolfmatt

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2008
    #3
    Thanks but that doesn't answer my question. I saw that thread already. I don't want to use USB for this, I'd like to have both monitors through the thunderbolt.
     
  4. Gav2k macrumors G3

    Gav2k

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2009
    #4
    http://support.apple.com/kb/HT5219

    Section 18
     
  5. mattwolfmatt thread starter macrumors 65816

    mattwolfmatt

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2008
    #5
    [/COLOR]
    I don't want to sound like a jerk, but - again - this did not answer my question. The Apple article talks about connecting up to 2 Apple thunderbolt displays. I'd like to connect 2 non-Apple displays, using mini-display or DVI or HDMI or something like that.

    I'm wondering if a Thunderbolt hub would work. Hoping that someone out there has this setup already.
    __________________
     
  6. Boyd01 macrumors 68040

    Boyd01

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2012
    Location:
    New Jersey Pine Barrens
    #6
    You can only connect one regular monitor to the the Thunderbolt port. That is why people are using USB adaptors. There's also this dock, but the two monitors are treated as one long skinny virtual screen that spans both monitors. I wouldn't find that useful, but maybe it would meet your needs? http://forums.macrumors.com/showpost.php?p=17881669&postcount=57
     
  7. DisplacedMic macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    May 1, 2009
    #7
    that's WHY people are using usb in the first place.... a thunderbolt hub like this one (which is i assume the one you are looking at already) costs around $300 and you'd still need adapters to run non-TB monitors.

    using mini-dvi would kill the data-transfer capability of the thunderbolt so can i ask why you are so against USB?
     
  8. Boyd01 macrumors 68040

    Boyd01

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2012
    Location:
    New Jersey Pine Barrens
    #8
    Maybe I'm missing something? How would you connect two non-thunderbolt monitors to that hub? It appears to only have two thunderbolt ports. One of them connects to the MBA and the other is free for a peripheral.

    For monitors, I don't see how that adds anything you don't already have on the MBA. :confused:
     
  9. DisplacedMic macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    May 1, 2009
    #9
    i could be misunderstanding myself (very possible) but i imagine the way OP wants this to work is MBA thunderbolt to TB hub, then he wants to connect two non-tb monitors to the TB hub via mini dvi adapter or something other than USB.
     
  10. Boyd01 macrumors 68040

    Boyd01

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2012
    Location:
    New Jersey Pine Barrens
    #10
    Well the thunderbolt hub might be handy for other things, but it only has one free thunderbolt port. The MBA already has one free port without the hub. Either way, there's only one "hole" to plug a monitor into.
     
  11. mattwolfmatt thread starter macrumors 65816

    mattwolfmatt

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2008
    #11
    Thanks all, actually I'm gonna try using a monitor hooked up to Apple TV for my 3rd display; I didn't want to take up a USB port. I haven't hooked it up yet, I need a female HDMI to female DVI adapter first (thanks monoprice!). I tried it briefly with another apple tv (to a TV not a monitor) and it is possible to use Apple TV as a 3rd display.
     
  12. jdechko macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2004
    #12
    Additionally, that's not the way that thunderbolt works. The thunderbolt data stream consists of 2 streams: A display port (video) stream and a PICe stream (output as thunderbolt).

    The Display Port signal gets stripped off and sent to the monitor while the PCIe stream can be sent along to different parts of the hub or another thunderbolt stream where it can be split again into Display Port & PCIe.

    So, as I posted a few months ago:

    Code:
    Thunderbolt = DisplayPort + Thunderbolt
    
    so 
    
    Thunderbolt = DisplayPort + (DisplayPort + Thunderbolt)
    
    etc...
    That's why you can daisy chain TB devices and a Thunderbolt monitor, like Apple's, can be connected anywhere in a chain.

    It's also why you can't daisy chain a TB display with a Non-TB display directly (the first monitor takes the video stream), but you can chain an TB display, a TB peripheral and a Non-TB display. The TB display passes a new thunderbolt stream (with both DP & TB) to the peripheral which can pass the DP on to the second monitor.
     

Share This Page