Macbook pro 2011 to external SSD and two monitors

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by minws13, Jan 18, 2015.

  1. minws13 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2011
    #1
    Hi everyone,

    I am planning on setting up an external SSD to boot an extra OSX + two external monitors from my macbook pro 15 early 2011.

    Since my macbook has only one thunderbolt (1) port and no USB 3:
    I though of buying this thunderbolt dock
    HERE and connecting the SSD and two monitors through the dock:

    1) a Lacie thunderbolt SSD 256 gb through thunderbolt to boot OS

    2) A monitor through the HDMI output

    2) Another monitor through one of the USB 3 ports with a USB3-HDMI adapter.

    Do you think it to much for a thunderbolt port to handle, or the macbook thunderbolt port will start spiting fire? :D

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. BoneDaddy, Jan 18, 2015
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2015

    BoneDaddy Suspended

    BoneDaddy

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2015
    Location:
    Texas
    #2
    You'll make the same mistake my friend did. That dock isn't going to somehow double the output. You can connect two monitors, but they will be mirrored, UNLESS you daisy chain the monitors. In which I believe they would both need to be thunderbolt monitors and I don't know if you can do this with thunderbolt 1.0.

    Unless you go out through two different outputs on the Mac, you will need to use the Dualhead2Go. There are different models. 1 is the ME, and another is the DP. They are expensive on the web sight, but I got mine like new but used, for 60 dollars shipped off of ebay.

    What THIS does, is it makes both monitors think it is ONE big desktop. So the menu bar will flow all the way through. Being that it is one big desktop, when you go full screen, the both screens will go into full screen mode and the app will take up both. So if you want one app FS in one monitor and another app in the other, they have what they call the "Matrox power Desk" app, which allows you to use quick commands to enlarge apps on one screen or the other. So for me, it is command 1, or command 2. Command one will blow up the app into monitor one. So it is like full screen, but the menu bar is still on top. When I use my music production software, I go full screen and it is full screen in both monitors. Gaming is fun like this.

    The thunderbolt dock only gives you more ports, cause you can do many different things on one thunderbolt port. In order for it to do what you want it to do, it would have to have one graphics card internally, for each output. This is not the case. The only way you can do this, is with a device like the Dualhead. Dell also produced one. I don't know of many others. They even have them for triple monitors. I highly reccomend it. I personally think it's awesome. On my Mid 2010 macbook, it's a great way to have dual monitors without that laggy USB card.

    On my new Retina, it allows for me to have 2 monitors on one output, and one other on the other thunderbolt. I could still use my built in display, and also run one thunderbolt, one HDMI, and another through a passive thunderbolt adapter. If I want to get ridiculous, I can even run another through USB with the USB external card. Thats a total of 6 monitors on one device. I did this just to see what it was like, and it was INSANE. Very unnecessary though.

    Good luck.
     
  3. BoneDaddy, Jan 18, 2015
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2015

    BoneDaddy Suspended

    BoneDaddy

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2015
    Location:
    Texas
    #3
    Here's some examples.

    First, is how the desktop will look, minus monitor bezel.

    Second, is the windows full size but not full screen on their own monitors.

    Third, is one window dragged further into the left monitor.

    Last, is full screen.
     

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  4. minws13 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2011
    #4
    Thanks a lot for the info!

    Its much more complicated than I thought. Its also sad that I can only connect my macbook pro 2011 to only one external monitor ...come on!!!

    Well, I will have to think about the Dualhead2Go or go for a new macbook.


    In the case that I use the Dualhead2Go from the docks' thunderbolt and connect two monitors, will I be able to use in its full capacity a USB3 SSD hard drive connected to the dock?

    Thanks again!
     
  5. BoneDaddy, Jan 18, 2015
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2015

    BoneDaddy Suspended

    BoneDaddy

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2015
    Location:
    Texas
    #5
    No problem. The dualhead won't change or interfere with anything else. It isn't en external graphics card and draws it's power from USB (you can also use a USB outlet), so it's no different from just plugging in a monitor.

    What I would do, if I were you, is just run the SSD in the optical bay and use a Dualhead. It also depends on what you use your Mac for. You may need more power anyway. In that case get a new Mac. If not, what you have is fine.

    If you don't mind me asking, what DO you do with your mac that requires this? If the second monitor isn't going to be doing anything extensive, you can use a USB graphics card. Those cost around 30 dollars. May as well go for a used Dualhead. If you've got the disposable income, get the new Mac, but I'd wait to see what the new models get. I love using my Retina as my main work horse and using my mid 2010 for other things. Sometimes the geek in me just wants to setup 8 monitors and both macs so my room can look like the Ninja Turtles command center.

    And trust me, if my loving beautiful wife were ok, I'd make it as sewery as possible. I have 3 daughters and a dog, so I can put a blue, red, purple and orange headband on them all, and dress in a Japanese robe so I can be master splinter. I'd then ask my wife to hold a knife, and we'd all kick her ass (shredder).
     

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  6. minws13 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2011
    #6
    I think the optical drive option + Dualhead is the best. This is what I will go for.

    I work a lot with 3D software, which stress the video card a lot and I wanted a secondary SSD for my works' data OSX.

    Overall, the best option would be to buy a new mac, but the cost in Greece is really high (basic macbook retina 15, 2200 euros .....)

    Thanks a lot again!
     

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