Primary external monitor question - best method to do this?

Discussion in 'MacBook' started by iMac430, Jul 20, 2009.

  1. iMac430 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2008
    #1
    Hi everybody. I have a white MB (early 2008). I'm going to be getting an external monitor soon with a native resolution of 1920x1200 - the highest that the MB's Intel GMA X3100 will support.

    I know that I can open System Preferences > Display and then click the little menubar and drag it to the other monitor to make it the primary. Here is the thing: I want to just use my 24" monitor and not use the MB's screen with it (I have an external keyboard and mouse).

    Should I...

    1. Use the two displays as an extended desktop and then (leave the MacBook lid open) just turn the brightness on the MB all the way off so the screen is black (no back light)?

    or...

    2. Just close the MacBook and use it in clam shell mode? I watch Hulu and YouTube a lot which causes the CPU load to increase and fans to spin up.... do I have to worry about over heating? I would be using the 24" monitor exclusively all the time and then take the MB when I go to class. Will this just ruin my MB pre-maturely?

    Is there a different method besides theese two? What do you suggest? Thanks.
     
  2. MacMini2009 macrumors 68000

    MacMini2009

    Joined:
    May 22, 2009
    Location:
    California
    #2
    Well if you use apps like aim/skype/itunes/twitter, I would put it on the Macbook's screen. If you don't use those apps, just close the Macbook and use it in calmshell mode. I recommend getting the Griffin Elevator Stand to help the Macbook ventilate air.
     
  3. 3GROC macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2008
    #3
    this is what I do...I dont know if it is right or the best but I only use my blackbooks screen as an extra for a video while browsing or itunes or something toher than my browser and ichat.

    I dont know if it is true but it does seem to get hotter in clamshell...but the temps read the same in istat.

    my blackbook is a early/mid 2008 model.
     
  4. Finlandboy macrumors 6502

    Finlandboy

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2007
    Location:
    Indianapolis, IN
    #4
    same here^^^

    i use my mbp's display as a 'free space' with the icons, dock, files on desktop, small apps (itunes, ichat, etc..) and use my external display as my workspace with everything else...it really makes organizing everything on your screen alot easier to me
     
  5. iMac430 thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2008
    #5
    Thank you both for the quick replies. I would sometimes use both screens at the same time, but most of the time it will be just the 24"

    Also, with the X3100 pumping out a resolution of 1920x1200, do I have to worry about animations in OS X and stuff getting choppy? Like the dock and/or minimizing windows? Thanks.
     
  6. MacMini2009 macrumors 68000

    MacMini2009

    Joined:
    May 22, 2009
    Location:
    California
    #6
    Don't worry, everything will be fine.
     
  7. gouvernor macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 18, 2008
    #7
    Should be fine either way

    I have used a Macbook and Macbook Pro in the same setup you speak of. When I use the external only, I generally close the lid and have no problems, but there are times I wake it from sleep with my external keyboard and then just open the lid afterwards and use the built in mic without turning on the screen. Assuming the computer sits in a spot that would allow for this, you could have your main screen and an open notebook to avoid heat issues.
     

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