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Sbmama5678

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jan 30, 2021
6
1
Santa Barbara, CA
Hi. Hopefully someone can help me. I just got the MacBook Air M1 and Apple only has one usb-usb-c adapter which will only show one external monitor. I need to have two displays. I’ve read a little about DisplayLink being a work around but wanted to see if anyone had first hand experience with this? Both monitors have usb connections so I’d need a third party multi adapter I guess? Any advice would be helpful. Thanks.
 

Sbmama5678

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jan 30, 2021
6
1
Santa Barbara, CA
I guess that should have been my main question-I need advice on decent adapter/docking station. I believe I'll have to download displaylink anyway. Thanks!
 

SPUY767

macrumors 68020
Jun 22, 2003
2,029
113
GA
I guess that should have been my main question-I need advice on decent adapter/docking station. I believe I'll have to download displaylink anyway. Thanks!
 
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macais

macrumors newbie
Feb 2, 2021
2
0
Hello, when calling the link from my region, I only get a list of different devices.
Could you lease tell the exact type.
thanks
 

Sbmama5678

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jan 30, 2021
6
1
Santa Barbara, CA
So the dock needs to have display link ports in order to work?
 

jdb8167

macrumors 68030
Nov 17, 2008
2,655
2,002
So the dock needs to have display link ports in order to work?
The M1 MacBooks only support a single external monitor. As you say, a Display Link hub is a workaround. There really isn’t any other solution though you can use an iPad with sidecar.
 

Sbmama5678

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jan 30, 2021
6
1
Santa Barbara, CA
The M1 MacBooks only support a single external monitor. As you say, a Display Link hub is a workaround. There really isn’t any other solution though you can use an iPad with sidecar.
Thank you and yes I know M1 Macbook air natively only supports one external monitor but I was asking about if I needed to get a display link docking station and/or a docking station that has specific ports for displaylink. See pic
 

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jdb8167

macrumors 68030
Nov 17, 2008
2,655
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Thank you and yes I know M1 Macbook air natively only supports one external monitor but I was asking about if I needed to get a display link docking station and/or a docking station that has specific ports for displaylink. See pic
I'm still not sure what you are asking. DisplayLink isn't really a type of port, it is a hardware solution for connecting monitors that doesn't require a graphics card. Are you confusing DisplayPort with DisplayLink? You need whatever type of port that your monitor supports. Usually either HDMI and/or DisplayPort.
 

JPack

macrumors G3
Mar 27, 2017
8,109
13,798
In short, you need to buy a dock that uses DisplayLink chipset. There are less expensive hubs available with two or more HDMI or DisplayPort connectors. However those rely on DP Alt Mode and do not work with MacBook.
 
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Sbmama5678

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jan 30, 2021
6
1
Santa Barbara, CA
Thanks I got three monitors up and running!
 
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smeetster

macrumors newbie
Sorry to piggyback onto this question, but it's very interesting stuff!
So I could use this solution for an intel laptop as well (2018 MacBook Air 13")?

But is that the best solution? The Air can support two non-mirrored external displays through HDMI if I drive one with each thunderbolt port. Maybe one usb-C can drive both if one is HDMI and one is DP (?).

What are the relative advantages/disadvantages of DisplayLink vs a thunderbolt -> dongle -> HDMI/DP solution?
 

jdb8167

macrumors 68030
Nov 17, 2008
2,655
2,002
Sorry to piggyback onto this question, but it's very interesting stuff!
So I could use this solution for an intel laptop as well (2018 MacBook Air 13")?

But is that the best solution? The Air can support two non-mirrored external displays through HDMI if I drive one with each thunderbolt port. Maybe one usb-C can drive both if one is HDMI and one is DP (?).

What are the relative advantages/disadvantages of DisplayLink vs a thunderbolt -> dongle -> HDMI/DP solution?
Sorry but no it can’t. The M1 MacBook Pro and the M1 MacBook Air can only drive one external monitor through the GPU. There is a workaround using USB but that has limitations and requires an external DisplayLink dock.

Edit: It looks like you are asking about an Intel Air and not the M1. Sorry for the misinformation. The Intel Air can indeed use two monitors.
 
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