Problems with external display resolution

cdow

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jan 24, 2012
15
0
Phoenix/Flagstaff, AZ
Finally have an issue that I can't seem to figure out myself. After a long time of reading MR, this seems like a fitting place to try to get some help. I've searched many placed and have yet to find a solution. I also posted this on the Apple support forum a few days ago, but no response.

I have a 21" Gateway display from my old PC that was collecting dust after I got a '11 Macbook Pro 13", so I've decided to use it as an external display. My issue is that the display's native resolution is 1680 x 1050, but I am not able to use ANY other res setting other than 800 x 600, wich makes everything huge. Also, 1680 x 1050 is not listed under the res options when I have the display settings up and any other resolution i choose results in the external going dark. It will only come back on when it is returned to 800 x 600. I am doing this through VGA and for extended desktop, not mirroring or anything else. Maybe the adapter is faulty? I'm pretty certain it is not the VGA cable itself because I was able to get HD with my PC.

Let me know if any other info is needed. Thanks!
 
Last edited:
Nov 28, 2010
22,670
28
located
What model is the external monitor? It should be visible on the backside of it.

Have you tried MIRROR DISPLAYS yet?

System Preferences > Displays >> Arrangement >>> Mirror Displays (but know, that the display with the lowest resolution determines the maximum resolution used on both, thus one display will have a lower than native resolution, except when both displays have the same native resolution)
 
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cdow

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jan 24, 2012
15
0
Phoenix/Flagstaff, AZ
I'm not home so I don't know the exact model number but it's a Gateway, I'll find the exact model when I get home later. But as far as mirroring, that brings my MBP down to 800 x 600 too, rather than what should be happening.
 
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cdow

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jan 24, 2012
15
0
Phoenix/Flagstaff, AZ
Well, I've settled on a bad VGA adapter for that problem since I tried the cable with a different monitor and got no connection whatsoever.

BUT now I've run into ANOTHER problem..... :mad:

Just today, I received the brand new DVI adapter and cable I ordered because I read that DVI was the better route to go. I've plugged everything in but am unable to get a signal through DVI. It's like the other display is there, I just can't get a signal. I can however move my mouse to the right of the screen and it disappears, as if it is going to the other screen, and comes back when I bring it back to my main MBP screen.

Looks like I can't catch a break with this pesky monitor....
 
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heisenberg123

macrumors 603
Oct 31, 2010
6,497
9
Hamilton, Ontario
Well, I've settled on a bad VGA adapter for that problem since I tried the cable with a different monitor and got no connection whatsoever.

BUT now I've run into ANOTHER problem..... :mad:

Just today, I received the brand new DVI adapter and cable I ordered because I read that DVI was the better route to go. I've plugged everything in but am unable to get a signal through DVI. It's like the other display is there, I just can't get a signal. I can however move my mouse to the right of the screen and it disappears, as if it is going to the other screen, and comes back when I bring it back to my main MBP screen.

Looks like I can't catch a break with this pesky monitor....
Do you have to change the input source on the monitor?
 
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D.T.

macrumors G4
Sep 15, 2011
10,303
9,304
Vilano Beach, FL
I'm using a Kanex (v2) DP-to-HDMI adapter, and have had no problems with my MBP driving a 24" 1920x1080, a 22.5" 1680x1050, and using the 22.5 with an late '10 MBP13, and using both with our 54" plasma.

I mean I just make the physical connection and everything is good to go, minus setting mirror vs. dual (and audio out for the TV).

Your MBP will easily drive that external to it's native resolution too (rarely do you want to let it upscale a non-native res...)

FWIW, I think the HDMI is a little more flexible adapter, then you can use a HDMI-to-DVI for monitors, or HDMI-to-HDMI for TVs.

Are you sure the monitor is actually working? Got a TV and the right cable you can try?
 
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