Please Help : 2 iMac's linked up for display & Processing

Discussion in 'iMac' started by ShinraiShinzou, Mar 15, 2013.

  1. ShinraiShinzou macrumors newbie

    Mar 15, 2013
    Hey guys.
    Hey Guys.

    My New 27" iMac (late 2012 Model) arrived today and I'm thrilled to bits with it.
    My old 24" iMac (2009) is still here, and wish to find a way to combine the two and run them simultaneously. I do alot of photo/video editing and will soon be doing alot of 3D modelling, and processor intensive rendering.

    How can I hook these two up, to use my old imac as a second display and use both processors to speed up rendering? - is it possible? if not then can i at least use the old mac as a second monitor?

    Any help is hugely appreciated.

    New Mac Specs
    3.4Ghz Intel Core i7
    8GB RAM (More in the post)
    GeForce GTX 680MX 2048MB

    Old iMac Specs
    2.66GHz Intel Core 2 Duo
    GeForce 9400
  2. jmthigpen macrumors regular

    Apr 18, 2011
    Charleston, SC
    You can't combine the power, but you should be able to connect them both with a mini displayport cable and then hit cmd + F2 on your old mac to enable target display mode.
  3. ShinraiShinzou thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 15, 2013
    Cheers for getting back to me.
    I read on another forum (trying to google my problems away) and someone said that the old iMac 2009 does not have, target display mode. can anyone confirm/deny this before I go wasting money on a displayport to no avail?

    Also any idea what to use? Thunderbolt to Thunderbolt?

    Ive also experimented with using teleport but its abit laggy and not very good.
  4. AppleNewton macrumors 68000


    Apr 3, 2007
    1 Finite Place
    you will need a Thunderbolt cable to do target display mode on Mid-2011 and newer iMacs.

    24" iMacs do not support that. only 2009-2010 27-inch iMacs with displayport, Mid-2011 and Late 2012 21-inch and 27-inch iMacs with thunderbolt support target display mode
  5. ShinraiShinzou thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 15, 2013
    cheers for clearing that up for me.. Its a shame I cant do do - does anyone know any other workarounds other than teleport ??
  6. 12dylan34 macrumors 6502a

    Sep 3, 2009
    The "using both processors" thing that you refer to is possible, and is built into most modern 3D programs.

    It's not as simple as hooking them together with a cord and having them both contribute, though. Not sure which 3D app you use, but basically, you have to have a machine that acts as a server, and one that acts as a client. The server machine can also act as a client simultaneously.

    For animation, each machine is assigned its own frames by the server to render, then it uploads those frames to the server machine, which, depending on your settings, assembles them into a video file upon completion of the entire sequence. This is complicated by things like global illumination and dynamics, which need to be simulated and cached on a single machine before starting the distributed render.

    For stills, you can have each work on pre-defined tiles of the image, then put all the tiles together in Photoshop.

    It's really not worth it to go through the hassle of this unless you're working with a scene that will take multiple days to render without splitting it up. Just starting out as you mentioned, it'll probably be a while before you're taking on things that require that much power anyway.

    I usually only do it if I estimate total render time on my fastest machine alone to be greater than 16-24 hours.
  7. SR20DETDOG macrumors regular

    Jan 25, 2011
    Queensland Australia
    I've never tried it myself as I don't have a 2nd computer but I found this program, Synergy, recently. It allows you to move your mouse and keyboard from one computer to the other seamlessly, or at least that's what it claims, could be helpful. Something to look into anyway. It's free too.
  8. ShinraiShinzou thread starter macrumors newbie

    Mar 15, 2013
    thank you - i will have a look - perhaps it is more stable then teleport.

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