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hajime

macrumors 604
Original poster
Jul 23, 2007
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Hi, I am a bit confused about the wordings in the specs. Am I correct that both models cannot support even one external display (in extended mode) with more than 4K at higher than 60Hz? For example, in addition to the built-in screen, can they all support in extended screen mode, an external 5K display at 120Hz, a 5120x1440 display at 240Hz or a 3440x1440 display at 175Hz?
 

PeteBurgh

macrumors 6502
Jun 25, 2014
281
622
Am I correct that both models cannot support even one external display (in extended mode) with more than 4K at higher than 60Hz?
Correct.

The Mac Pros support displays with higher than 4k, and they support higher than 60Hz (in various combinations, depending on M2 Pro or M2 Max, and how many displays you want to use at a time), but not both at the same time.
 

hajime

macrumors 604
Original poster
Jul 23, 2007
7,859
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Thanks.

If I connect a M2 Pro/Mac MacBook Pro 16" to a display of 5120x1440 or 3440x1440, it should work but at 60Hz. Am I correct?

How come more than 60Hz at above 4K is not available? Will M3 Pro and Max be the same?
 

PeteBurgh

macrumors 6502
Jun 25, 2014
281
622
If I connect a M2 Pro/Mac MacBook Pro 16" to a display of 5120x1440 or 3440x1440, it should work but at 60Hz. Am I correct?
Correct.
How come more than 60Hz at above 4K is not available?
If you're using 5K, 6K, 8K displays at 120hz or above, that's a lot of data, especially if you're also using a wide colour space and dynamic range. So it comes with a lot of overheads and cost in terms of processing and transmitting this data. (Somewhat infamously, when the 2014 iMac came out, 5K even at 60Hz wasn't supported by the DisplayPort standard at the time, so Apple created a weird custom output with two separate DisplayPort streams which were then merged back together).

Relatedly, most 5K/6K monitors (not that there are many) are limited to 60Hz - e.g. the LG UltraFine, the Studio Display, and the Pro Display XDR are all 60Hz.

I'm not really sure what the use case would be anyway to be honest. Things like the Studio Display are intended for design work, where high pixel counts and colour accuracy matter, not refresh rates. Many gamers prioritise high/variable refresh rates prefer to play at 1440 or even 1080, not 4k. 5K and 6K aren't even in the picture.

It's always fun to have a higher number, and to fantasise about 8K monitors running at 480Hz, but at some point you're creating huge technical challenges without actually making something more useful.

Will M3 Pro and Max be the same?
Maybe! Or maybe they will be different!

Friend, you have posted more than 7,000 times in this forum - I would think that means you've been around long enough to know that Apple doesn't reveal specs ahead of time, and everything else is just speculation!
 
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LoopsOfFury

macrumors member
Sep 12, 2015
54
90
California
Hi, I am a bit confused about the wordings in the specs. Am I correct that both models cannot support even one external display (in extended mode) with more than 4K at higher than 60Hz? For example, in addition to the built-in screen, can they all support in extended screen mode, an external 5K display at 120Hz, a 5120x1440 display at 240Hz or a 3440x1440 display at 175Hz?
You're (somewhat) correct, but that's more because such monitors don't exist than because the MBP couldn't drive them. I'm not aware of any monitor >4K with a refresh rate >60 Hz. I've been waiting years for such a thing with no luck. They should have no problem with your examples of 5120x1440 @ 240 Hz and 3440x1440 @ 175 Hz though, because both of those are less than 4K (3840x2160), which Apple says the M2 can drive at 240 Hz.
 
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hajime

macrumors 604
Original poster
Jul 23, 2007
7,859
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You're (somewhat) correct, but that's more because such monitors don't exist than because the MBP couldn't dive them. I'm not aware of any monitor >4K with a refresh rate >60 Hz. I've been waiting years for such a thing with no luck. They should have no problem with your examples of 5120x1440 @ 240 Hz and 3440x1440 @ 175 Hz though, because both of those are less than 4K (3840x2160), which Apple says the M2 can drive at 240 Hz.

Do you mean even M2 Pro Macbook Pro 16" 2023 can do that?
 

hajime

macrumors 604
Original poster
Jul 23, 2007
7,859
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If I put a M2 Pro Macbook Pro 16" to clamshell mode, will the maximum number of external displays increases from two to three? M2 Pro Mini supports three external displays.
 
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LoopsOfFury

macrumors member
Sep 12, 2015
54
90
California
If I put a M2 Pro Macbook Pro 16" to clamshell mode, will the maximum number of external displays increases from two to three? M2 Pro Mini supports three external displays.
No - the Mini gets an extra monitor because it has no internal screen. It doesn't matter whether the lid is closed or not for the MacBooks.
 
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