non-Retina MBP to use external monitor, what's supported screen resolution?

oldguru

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 18, 2012
65
1
If I get a 27' or 30' LCD, the resolution might be 1920 x 1080 or 2560 x 1440

Does non-Retina MBP support such high resolution external LCD monitor?
 
Nov 28, 2010
22,684
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A good 27" display comes with 2560 x 1440 pixel, a good 30" display comes with 2560 x 1600 pixel, both are supported in current and past Macs.

Apple tells us here.
 

Walter Bell

macrumors regular
Mar 25, 2010
209
0
Non retina no. Retina is based on ppi, not actual resolution. Retina is apples patented name for such high ppi on screens, like the iPhone, iPad, and new rMBP

PPI= Pixels Per Inch
 

oldguru

macrumors member
Original poster
Jun 18, 2012
65
1
Thanks guys, I went to apple website site, redo the homework, and found:

Intel HD Graphics 4000 (all 13- and 15-inch configurations)
NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M with 512MB of GDDR5 memory (15-inch 2.3GHz configuration) or NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M with 1GB of GDDR5 memory (15-inch 2.6GHz configuration) and automatic graphics switching
Dual display and video mirroring: Simultaneously supports full native resolution on the built-in display and up to 2560 by 1600 pixels on an external display, both at millions of colors


So, almost any kind of external LCD monitor should be supported.
 
Nov 28, 2010
22,684
27
located
Non retina no. Retina is based on ppi, not actual resolution. Retina is apples patented name for such high ppi on screens, like the iPhone, iPad, and new rMBP
Even my 2009 MBP and a 2005 PowerBook can support 2560 x 1600 pixel on an external 30" display, it has nothing to do with "Retina", which is just a term Apple uses for quadrupling resolutions.
 

eron

macrumors 6502
Dec 2, 2008
394
0
Be aware of the connection required. For running high res, you will probably need a mini-dp to DP adaptor/cable, or a significantly more expensive dual-dvi adaptor (50-$120).
 

tenshu2k

macrumors member
Oct 13, 2002
42
0
does anyone know if its possible to use "retina"-like scaling on an external display.

When I'm connected to the 27/30, things look really small.
 

Walter Bell

macrumors regular
Mar 25, 2010
209
0
does anyone know if its possible to use "retina"-like scaling on an external display.

When I'm connected to the 27/30, things look really small.
I think apple will only scale the resolution if it's the same. Need boot camp to mirror the resolution.

I had a Mac Pro/30" monitor back in the day. I bought a graphics card for it and it would run like crazy when I played WoW on it.

Running things in windowed mode helps out quite a bit.
 

SlyMac

macrumors 6502
Jun 16, 2008
292
43
Be aware of the connection required. For running high res, you will probably need a mini-dp to DP adaptor/cable, or a significantly more expensive dual-dvi adaptor (50-$120).
That's where MONOPRICE comes in to play :D
 

gentlefury

macrumors 68030
Jul 21, 2011
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Los Angeles, CA
The 11" MBA supports 2560x1600.....all modern macbooks do.

I am currently running 1 HDMI 1920x1080 display and 1 30" 2560x1600 display simultaneously at work.

185440_4513903289185_990094010_n.jpg

Also using thunderbolt to ethernet. The middle one is a 3D display.

BTW, don't waste money on a dual link dvi cable. Get one of these:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16815158233&nm_mc=KNC-GoogleAdwords&cm_mmc=KNC-GoogleAdwords-_-pla-_-NA-_-NA

it supports full resolution and its $10! Most dual link displays also have display port these days.
 

chaseychasem

macrumors regular
Aug 4, 2012
137
0
Strange how cable documentation often specifies a maximum external resolution of 1920x1080. Glad that's not a hard cap, though.
 

gentlefury

macrumors 68030
Jul 21, 2011
2,848
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Los Angeles, CA
Strange how cable documentation often specifies a maximum external resolution of 1920x1080. Glad that's not a hard cap, though.
depends on the cable. DVI limit is 1920x1200. Some older HDMI is 1920x1080 (higher bandwidth can do up to 4k) Dual Link DVI limits each signal to half of your output resolution if your display excedes 1920x1200 (so if you plug a dual link display into a computer using a single link cable you get half res, 1280x800) I don't know the limit of display port...but I know it does 2560x1600, because I am currently using it for that.
 

chaseychasem

macrumors regular
Aug 4, 2012
137
0
depends on the cable. DVI limit is 1920x1200. Some older HDMI is 1920x1080 (higher bandwidth can do up to 4k) Dual Link DVI limits each signal to half of your output resolution if your display excedes 1920x1200 (so if you plug a dual link display into a computer using a single link cable you get half res, 1280x800) I don't know the limit of display port...but I know it does 2560x1600, because I am currently using it for that.
So in other words DisplayPort supports a higher limit than DVI, but a resolution that exceeds said limit could still be transmitted as a DVI signal using a DisplayPort-to-DVI adapter?
 

gentlefury

macrumors 68030
Jul 21, 2011
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0
Los Angeles, CA
So in other words DisplayPort supports a higher limit than DVI, but a resolution that exceeds said limit could still be transmitted as a DVI signal using a DisplayPort-to-DVI adapter?
You would have to get a dual-link DVI to mini display adapter if you want to go higher than 1920x1200 through DVI. So for 2560x1600 you either need to spend $50-$100 (depending on brand) for a Dual-Link to mini display adapter, or spend $10 for a display to mini display adapter.

Sadly, cinema displays only support Dual Link DVI....and Thunderbolt displays support thunderbolt which is a $50 cable.