So no chance at Thunderbolt 3 MacBook Pros with DP 1.3 this year?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by PatriotInvasion, Mar 16, 2016.

  1. PatriotInvasion macrumors 65816

    PatriotInvasion

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2010
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    Boston, MA
    #1
    My ideal setup would be a MacBook Pro and Retina 5K Thunderbolt Display. But, it sounds like there's no chance that will happen this year given that Skylake doesn't support DisplayPort 1.3 which is needed to drive 5K over SST (Single-Stream Transport). The 3 questions I have are as follows:

    1.) Would Apple consider releasing a 5K Thunderbolt Display over MST (Multi-Stream Transport) that uses Thunderbolt 3 and DisplayPort 1.2 and live with that like Dell has with its 5K display?

    2.) Does Apple have any tech tricks up it's sleeve like the 5K iMac's custom timing controller that would allow for a 5K Thunderbolt Display with great performance over a single cable despite DP 1.2's limitations?

    3.) Would Apple consider a 4K Thunderbolt Display and just take people's money while they wait for Intel to adopt DisplayPort 1.3? o_O

    I really don't want to wait until Cannon Lake for the possibility of this setup, but given that Apple has essentially abandoned it's display business (somehow still savagely selling a 2011 27" Thunderbolt Display for $999 in 2016), the wait may be longer.:(
     
  2. poematik13 macrumors 6502a

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    #2
    MST is done for, it was only a temporary solution to get 5K to the market ASAP with current hardware bandwidth limitations. SST is the future, and TB3 will be able to support a 5K signal with one cable. The iMac does 5K because Apple built their own custom display controller for it- thus why it can't be used as a target display like the older iMacs do.

    In addition, Apple would never make you do something clumsy like plugging in 2 cables for video (MST). That's why they are waiting on TB3 to mature so they can release a 5K retina display with a single TB3 connector that would with all TB3 enabled 2016+ macs.
     
  3. PatriotInvasion thread starter macrumors 65816

    PatriotInvasion

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    #3
    Problem for 2016 Macs is that Skylake chips currently do not support DisplayPort 1.3, which is required for 5K over SST with a single cable. As the MacRumors article I linked to states, not even Kaby Lake will support it, which would mean a wait into 2017. Very puzzling why Apple wouldn't have upgraded the existing Thunderbolt Display at some point between 2013-2016 to 4K with USB 3 and a thinner design. At least they could have taken our money for that display while the long wait for 5K happened.

    If a 5K iMac in a new enclosure comes this fall, I won't be able to resist it and will go with that and my iPad I suppose. First world problems.
     
  4. Shamgar macrumors regular

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    Jun 28, 2015
    #4
    You've got some information confused here. TB3 allows for 5k on one cable because it can carry both streams for MST, but it lacks DisplayPort 1.3 support needed to do it as SST. It's an improvement over two cables, but still a kludge.

    So far, Apple has strictly stuck to pixel doubling when upgrading displays to retina. A 27" 4k display would have had a significantly lower DPI than any other retina display they've done, and would not have lent itself to a clean pixel doubling. 27" is too large for a 1080p equivalent, and making 1440p equivalent the default would have required downscaling rather than native display. They could have dropped back down to a ~23" display and gone with a 1080p default, but that may have been perceived as a regression or not a viable market.
     
  5. Freyqq macrumors 68040

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    Dec 13, 2004
    #5
    Even if it lacks DP1.3, it can still do 5k as thunderbolt - as long as it has the requisite bandwidth. Thunderbolt is just raw PCIe data.
     
  6. PatriotInvasion thread starter macrumors 65816

    PatriotInvasion

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2010
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    #6
    This makes sense, but they could have released say a 24" 4K Thunderbolt Display pixel doubling the 21.5" iMac's 1920x1080 to 3840x2160, added USB 3, and MagSafe 2 and called it a day a few years ago.

    They obviously chose not, but in the meantime, it is insane that they are still selling the 2011 model for $999 when other 27" 2560x1440 IPS displays sell for less than half that price.

    In the end, it appears the MacRumors article on this is correct. If we ever see a Retina Thunderbolt Display, it will be in the form of USB-C/Thunderbolt 3/DisplayPort 1.3 spec on Cannonlake MacBook Pros in late-2017.
     
  7. poematik13 macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 5, 2014
    #7
    I see. That's lame, I guess Intel did that to preserve their upgrade roadmap.
     

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