Retina MBP and Retina External Display???

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by renosausage, Sep 22, 2012.

  1. renosausage macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2012
    #1
    Hey Everyone,

    I have searched the internet all over and I can't seem to find any information about the best external display to buy for my retina MBP.

    I love doing video editing so an external display makes it much easier to navigate, but going from the retina resolution on my rMBP to normal resolution on an external display is very unfortunate.

    I know the rMBP is still pretty new, but can anyone recommend a good external display to go along with it?
     
  2. Tea-Aholic macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2011
    Location:
    Melbourne, Australia
    #2
    Apple Thunderbolt Display. Or for cheaper, any IPS display.
     
  3. Stetrain macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2009
    #3
    There aren't going to be any "Retina" external displays for a while probably, at least without being extremely expensive. With cutting edge pixel density the size of the display really matters as far as cost and ease of production goes.

    As for what's currently on the market, I would recommend either Apple's Thunderbolt display or one of the Dell Ultrasharp models.
     
  4. rrm998 macrumors regular

    rrm998

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2012
    Location:
    Houston, TX USA
    #4
    I'm using a older Dell 27" running at 1920x1200 and a Apple Thunderbolt Monitor. I run the Retina display at 1920x1200 so I'm getting at least the same resolution on the externals (More on the Apple) as I get on my laptop display.

    The native 2560x1440 resolution on the Thunderbolt monitor looks really crisp.
     
  5. MCAsan macrumors 601

    MCAsan

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2012
    Location:
    Atlanta
    #5
    Apple has not offically said what constitues a Retina external display in terms of pixels per inch. The current Thunderbolt display is 27" and does 2550x1440. That is the same resolution as other 27" IPS panels from Dell, HP, Samsung, DoubleSight, NEC, and Eizo. Viewsonic should release their new 27" panel this coming week. Asus should release their on October 8. You can see them all listed in the monitor section at NewEgg if you look for 2550x1440 resolution.

    The costs range from $699 to $2000 depending how critical the color management (color gamut coverage and accuracy) is for what you do. Not that with these monitors you do not get any kind of docking station you do not get a Thunderbolt interface from the laptop and no real docking station features. You might get a USB hub.

    To me the big advantage of an Apple Thunderbolt display is you get a 27" IPS panel plus a docking station. The monitor give the MBP both a thunderbolt cable for data and a power connect for recharging. The current display also has a USB 2 hub and FW ports. It also is where you connect your ethernet cable.

    To try to duplicate that with 3rd party products you would need a 27" IPS panel and you would need something like the Delkin Thunderbolt docking station. The docking station has a list of $399. Assuming you can get it for $300 that would put the cost of both the panel and station at least to $1000 with the cheapest of the IPS panels. And that combo would still not recharge a MBP and may not have integrated camera or speakers.


    So if color management is CRITICAL, go with a mega dollar Eizo panel or maybe an NEC one. But if you want a good value in a panel plus the docking station features for your MBP, IMHO you are looking at Apple Thunderbolt Display. Let us hope for a minor refresh in the next few weeks to change from USB 2 to USB 3 ports.
     
  6. rrm998 macrumors regular

    rrm998

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2012
    Location:
    Houston, TX USA
    #6
    Just a note, in my experience the Thunderbolt Monitor's USB hub is very, very slow compared to my existing USB 2.0 hub. The ethernet is fast through the monitor and it does reduce the number of things I need to plug into the Mac when "docking."
     
  7. MCAsan macrumors 601

    MCAsan

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    Jul 9, 2012
    Location:
    Atlanta
    #7
    USB 2 is why I will wait for a display refresh with USB 3 before I order one.
     
  8. gbit macrumors member

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    Aug 20, 2012
  9. switon, Sep 22, 2012
    Last edited: Sep 22, 2012

    switon macrumors 6502a

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    Sep 10, 2012
  10. br3nt macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2012
    #10
    *Does not support external monitors when running on integrated gfx.

    There we go, fixed it for you :)


    Note: this bugs me, but can't really do anything about it. will it still use nvidia in clamshell mode?
     
  11. maxwelltech macrumors 6502

    maxwelltech

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2011
    Location:
    Irvine, CA, USA
    #11
    I will go with an Apple Thunderbolt Display. I don't believe there are "retina" level external displays on the market right now.
     
  12. Tea-Aholic macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2011
    Location:
    Melbourne, Australia
    #12
    I think the Thunderbolt/DisplayPort is actually directly connected to the NVIDIA GPU which is why you can't use the Intel.
     
  13. MCAsan macrumors 601

    MCAsan

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2012
    Location:
    Atlanta
    #13

    Apple has not said what resolution constitutes Retina on an external monitor of any size. All we have from them is iPhones, iPads, and the rMBP that are officially Retina. I doubt we will see a huge increase beyond 2550x1440 soon in a 27" IPS panel. Doubling that pixel level means serious video boards and bandwidth to do fast refreshes of the screen.
     
  14. wlossw macrumors 6502a

    wlossw

    Joined:
    May 9, 2012
    Location:
    Montreal, Quebec, Canada
    #14
    This. Even if apple did release a retina external 27" monitor, chances are that our current rMbp couldn't drive it anyway.
     
  15. MCAsan macrumors 601

    MCAsan

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2012
    Location:
    Atlanta
    #15
    Fully agreed. The rMBP can drive the current Thunderbolt Display. But it could not handle something in the range of 5000x3000. So I doubt if we will see a Thunderbolt Display with higher resolution soon.
     
  16. Stetrain macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2009
    #16
    Huh?

    [​IMG]
     
  17. wiznet macrumors regular

    Joined:
    May 30, 2012
    Location:
    Canada
    #17
    It's actually 2560x1440.

    And yes, it all depends on the size of the monitor, and average viewing distance. The resolution for the Thunderbolt would probably be 5120x2880, or maybe a bit lower due to farther viewing distance.

    As far as externals go, the only HiDPI display I've seen is 10000 USD. Go with the Thunderbolt display, I got a refurb and I love it.
     
  18. MCAsan macrumors 601

    MCAsan

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2012
    Location:
    Atlanta
    #18
    Has Apple said that a 27" display would be at least 5120x2880 to be Retina? I think that is guesswork from folks outside Apple about what 27" Retina means. Who has a GPU to push that? Definitely not rMBP.

    Unless I can get refurbed ones (one for me and wife) at a very good price, I will hold on and see if there is a minor refresh by the end of October from Apple.
     
  19. calderone, Sep 23, 2012
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2012

    calderone macrumors 68040

    calderone

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2009
    Location:
    Seattle
    #19
    Well of course it is guesswork.

    We can get a pretty good idea of what a Retina external display would mean by looking at the typical factors that go into determining "Retina." The critical one being typical viewing distance.

    Fortunately, some have done the legwork here: http://www.tuaw.com/2012/03/01/retina-display-macs-ipads-and-hidpi-doing-the-math/

    and here:

    http://appcubby.com/blog/os-x-at-2x/

    The gist is that, no we don't need an exact pixel double to reach "Retina" on a 27". Instead something between 2560x1400 and 3840x2600 could achieve "Retina."

    The 650M can drive 3840x2160: http://www.geforce.com/hardware/notebook-gpus/geforce-gt-650m/specifications

    Assuming Apple could get the scaling right, we could see a display at a resolution around there meaning more affordable but still "Retina."

    Hitting 3840x2160, might allow for "Best for Retina" of 1920x1080, keeping us at 16:9.
     
  20. dmccloud macrumors 6502a

    dmccloud

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2009
    Location:
    Anchorage, AK
    #20
    That's not even close to true. I've used external monitors via both a Thunderbolt to HDMI adapter as well as the built-in HDMI port.
     

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