Thunderbolt Display alternative compatible with nMP

Discussion in 'Mac Pro' started by GreenWater, Mar 31, 2014.

  1. GreenWater macrumors member

    GreenWater

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2013
    Location:
    Venice, CA
    #1
    I was nudged away from buying a TBD by someone who told me to get a cheaper alternative. I assumed this would be an easy purchase but I read there were compatibility issues with monitors and the nMP. Can anyone confirm success in using a lower cost 27" display than the TBD on a nMP or should I pay $999 to avoid problems? I will add a second 27" display and a higher quality 30" as a center later in the year.
     
  2. Reno Richter macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 31, 2012
    #2
    I have a Dell U2713H currently connected via HDMI, originally via Display Port and it has issues waking up with Display Port all the time and less with HDMI and some odd issues with Firefox and pages flickering Blue from time to time. Still have yet to get text in certain apps to display correctly. Can't say I would buy another if I had too.


    The U2713H is flanked by 2 Dell U2412M left and right that work flawlessly connected by Display Port. The U2412M's came from my retired oMP setup. Dell has discontinued the U2412M's but they can still be purchased from various online retailers. I would buy these again as support real estate to a main monitor in a heartbeat.
     
  3. snouter, Mar 31, 2014
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2014

    snouter macrumors 6502a

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    May 26, 2009
    #3
    I have a 27" HPZR2740w 1440p connected via a mini DisplayPort to DisplayPort cable with no issues. I also have a 27" LED Apple Cinema Display 1440p.

    The HP and Apple screens behave and color very similar except the Apple is glossy. Basically you could get two ($449 each) for less than the price of one Apple.

    http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produ...d_XW476A8_ABA_ZR2740W_27inch_LED_Backlit.html

    EDIT: The market has fallen out on 1440p monitors with the coming 4k monitors. It's a good time to buy. There is nothing special about the Apple TBD. It looks nice. It has thunderbolt. After that it's just an LG panel and frankly, not worth $999. It's IPS, the color is ok. the speakers are handy. But it is 8-bit and bands and only has a prosumer color space. You can def do better for the money. I have two of these HP monitors on my PC as well, so, I own 3 of them and have been happy with them given their limitations. I have no delusions that they are Dreamcolor 10 bits or super accurate Eizo or NEC. They are pretty good though. The Dell monitors are also good. I've only heard some complaints about a sparkling anti-glare, but I'm not sure which monitor had that and I heard they revised it at some point anyhow.

    I calibrated both my Apple Cinema and my HP and they looked very similar before, and very similar after. Neither needed a whole lot of calibration, just got some of that blue out mostly.
     
  4. Cubemmal macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 13, 2013
    #4
    I like HP monitors. They give you a good stand, for one thing. I don't get why so many monitors have crappy stands that you can't use for portrait.

    The big advantage for TB monitors is the Thunderbolt. I have three Cinema, a regular and two TB. The Cinema hogs one bus as Mini-DP, and the TB go off the second bus daisy chained. That leaves the third bus by itself which I use for data.

    If I had three 27" monitors they all would be hogging all of the TB busses, and putting data on those would halve the bandwidth as they would all default to TB 1.0.
     
  5. lemonade-maker, Apr 1, 2014
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2014

    lemonade-maker macrumors 6502

    lemonade-maker

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2009
    #5
    I have two HPZR2740w and two crossover q27s. The HP's are great. The crossovers are also but sometimes emit a buzz when the power brick is cold and the dvi-d to mdp adapter isn't working with 10.9.2 drivers, had to use the last working amd drivers from 10.9.2 beta 2. I'll probably buy 2 more HPZR2740w and call it a day.
     
  6. Cubemmal macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 13, 2013
    #6
    Yeah, I'd rather not muck with drivers, buzzes and other potential glitches. Pick your poison. My time is extremely limited and I don't want to add to the list of problems I've got to work on. I'd like to keep them creative problems.
     
  7. GreenWater thread starter macrumors member

    GreenWater

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    Jul 30, 2013
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    Venice, CA
    #7
    Thanks for alerting me to the Dell U2713H glitches. I was considering that display.
     
  8. GreenWater thread starter macrumors member

    GreenWater

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2013
    Location:
    Venice, CA
    #8
    Thanks for the advice. It looks like the rest of you guys like the HPZR2740W which looks like a great option with a quality build. It sells at under $500 too. The other monitor I liked was the Asus PB278Q which seems to perform similarly, but is $100 more. Is there any advantage to using HDMI as video connection to the nMP - might not need an adapter for example? The HPZR2740W does not have HDMI but I am not a gamer so it probably doesn't affect me. I'll wait till they ship my nMP before I buy as it looks like the display prices change on a weekly basis (unless it is made by Apple).
     
  9. orpheus1120, Apr 1, 2014
    Last edited: Apr 1, 2014

    orpheus1120 macrumors 65816

    orpheus1120

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    Jan 23, 2008
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    Malaysia
    #9
    You could daisy-chain 2 TB displays on one TB bus, while the third occupying a second TB bus. That will leave the third TB bus empty for you to use for data.

    Considering that the current TB displays have yet to be upgraded to TB 2.0, they need to be situated at the end of the TB daisy chain with current TB 2.0 equipped Macs. This is what most users will do if they have a nMP, Apple TB displays with other TB 2.0 external peripherals.
     
  10. Cubemmal macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 13, 2013
    #10
    That's what I said, it's what I'm doing. Two TB on one bus, an older Cinema on the second, and data on the third.
     
  11. orpheus1120 macrumors 65816

    orpheus1120

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    Jan 23, 2008
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    Malaysia
    #11
    You mentioned three 27" monitors and hogging all TB busses, which I assumed to be TB monitors, hence my reply.

    Unless of course if you meant an additional TB monitor to your existing ones, then you are correct.
     
  12. Cubemmal macrumors 6502a

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    Jun 13, 2013
    #12
    I was referring to the previous post quoted here

    Three HP 27" monitors with adapters on the nMP - my point was that they are cheaper but they'll eat up your TB busses.
     
  13. Chancha macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2014
    #13
    It depends on how new the 3rd party monitor models are, but if you check to see if the specs on them clearly states a version of DisplayPort 1.2, it means you can daisy chain from just one TB2 port on the nMP. For 2560x1440 resolution 8-bit I think the limit is 2 monitors per chain. If you have one or two 1920x1080 there you may be able to get 3 or 4 in one chain.
     

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