Monitors, Monitors, Monitors... 2013 Air (13")

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by logo3801, Feb 24, 2014.

  1. logo3801, Feb 24, 2014
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2014

    logo3801 macrumors newbie


    Feb 24, 2014
    Waukesha, WI
    :eek: Monitors! The crazy topic when Mac users start to discuss what is right and wrong in the world of displays.

    Before I begin, a few ground rules:

    1. Not everyone can afford or wants to spend $1000 on Thunderbolt Displays no matter how deliciously sexy they are :apple: :cool:

    2. USB monitors work! They are still around for a reason, sure they may not be for gaming, but they can be used in a day to day use.

    3. Lastly, I want your opinions! Facts are nice, but your opinions make this topic fun and wild to discuss. :D

    Okay lets get going, :eek:

    So I have currently a Windows 8.1 Machine I custom built a few years back, I could go on about the crazy specs but that is a waste of text/time. So basically I have 5 displays. 4 Desktop sized (19"-27") monitors and one 42" (netflix) monitor.

    I have two nVidia cards supplying information to the 5 displays (can support 6) ;)

    I plan to rid myself of this Windows machine and move entirely to apple. I may purchase a Mac Mini or the new Mac Pro. I do not want to purchase more monitors considering I have 5! :rolleyes:

    I read on the apple support site that apple thunderbolt ports (thunderbolt 1) supports two monitors, but the only use (real world case) that I can find is 2 Thunderbolt Displays daisy-chained.

    I want to power either 1 or two (if possible) displays through the thunderbolt on my Macbook Air 2013 (13") :apple: ( I have thunderbolt to DVI and a thunder to VGA ) and Then I want to power 2 monitors through the USB 3.0 ports on my mac.

    These adapters!
    Supports up to six displays 1 display per device. Maximum 6 devices per system
    Fully integrated into Windows XP™, Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 8 and MAC OSX

    Is this pushing it? I may just end up trying all this and posting the results.



    Attached Files:

  2. bleedblue12345 macrumors newbie

    Sep 18, 2013


    (if needed)

    Should get you 2 displays out of your thunderbolt port. You can then add 2 of these guys I suppose to get you 4 displays in total.

    I've never used USB adapters for displays, but they should work for basic desktop stuff (although it won't be as fluid as native thunderbolt/dvi).

    Keep in mind all your displays will be limited to 1920x1200 max resolution.
  3. logo3801 thread starter macrumors newbie


    Feb 24, 2014
    Waukesha, WI
    Wow thanks!:D I will certainly check all this out! :cool:
  4. bleedblue12345 macrumors newbie

    Sep 18, 2013
    You might be able to run the two USB monitors off the thunderbolt dock, so that you'd only have one port going to your MBA. However, I'm not sure if there would be any complications in doing that vs. native USB.
  5. L T macrumors 6502

    L T

    Feb 24, 2013
    That dock also give you an HDMI out as well so you should be covered
  6. alphaod macrumors Core


    Feb 9, 2008
    I'm not sure the MacBook Air can support that many monitors.
  7. logo3801 thread starter macrumors newbie


    Feb 24, 2014
    Waukesha, WI
    Why not? Elaborate... :confused:
  8. RCAFBrat, Mar 2, 2014
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2014

    RCAFBrat macrumors 6502

    Jul 10, 2013
    Montreal, QC
    Officially dual displays are supported per tech specs:

    With respect to connecting more than one display using the CalDigit (which does seem to have very favourable reviews), you need to use the HDMI output plus daisy chain a couple of devices together in order to achieve desired results as in MacBook Air > CalDigit > other two port Thunderbolt device > monitor.

    I think the following thread offers some explanation:

    There was another thread with specific examples of people's setups as well:

    You have to go about 6 or 7 pages in; one person had four displays running including the MacBook Pro but I don't believe the Air will be near as capable.

    Good luck!

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