Thunderbolt Display update speculations

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by luffytubby, Jul 24, 2013.

  1. luffytubby macrumors 6502a

    luffytubby

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2008
    #1
    In Anandtechs review of last years Thunderbolt Display, Anand Shimpi basically said that the thunderbolt display was a display-meets-docking-station (VR here, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Z7RxvkqF5I ) .


    The idea is great, because it theoretically means, that one person could have one display, which could have USB devices, audio, charging, sound ecetera all in-one, leaving the user only having plug in the thunderbolt cable, to get the functionality of a full computer.

    With the possibility of now it being possible to make external graphics card, a small Macbook Air could suddenly become much more powerful, when docked into the display.



    But Apple has not updated the display, and the price has not gone down. Many people believe the TB Displays will have similar design to the fat-butt iMacs for aesthetics, while some have speculated for a darker Mac Pro like-look.
    4K and 3D are no good. Could it have a build in optional space for a 2,5 HDD/SSD? will it ship with Thunderbolt 2.0? What about USB3?


    What exactly is going on with this Display???
     
  2. mm201 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2013
    #2
    Nobody knows~
    Everyone was expecting an update to the iMac's laminate process and thinness back at WWDC but they didn't deliver.

    It's looking more and more like small form factor 4K will come from a third party before Apple.
     
  3. throAU macrumors 601

    throAU

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2012
    Location:
    Perth, Western Australia
    #3
    I think thunderbolt 2 compatibility and USB3 ports are a no-brainer. Given that all new macs since the HD4000 were released are capable of displaying 4k, a 4k display may be possible. Just not sure if the pricing is there yet, last I checked a 4k monitor was a about 3 grand at least.

    I am keen to see whether they include a GPU in it, or maybe an option for one.

    Ideally i'd personally love to have a TB display with a PCIe slot in it that I could run a GPU in and connect to my macbook. There is ZERO benefit for me to having a GPU actually inside the machine. Unless i'm at a desk on AC power, the discrete GPU is useless as it halves battery life, or worse (have seen battery life estimate of 45 minutes when the machine is working hard from 100% battery) when it is active.

    So why put it in the box that I use when not at a desk?
     
  4. EricT43 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2011
    #4
    GPU inside the display is a great idea. I would love that.
     
  5. Commy1 macrumors 6502a

    Commy1

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2013
    #5
    The only thing I'm hoping for is:
    21.5" form factor as well as 27"
    Thinner profile, that's a given
    and a lower price please!...

    I'd enjoy some kind of wireless functionality as well. Thunderbolt for the best performance and a wireless option for those running laptops.
    And of course Retina... but I don't see that happening until the speculated Apple TV is released. If they made a 27" Retina TBD I think they'd have to include some kind of help for the GPU, pumping out that many pixels at 60+ FPS would be intensely hard for ANY video card let alone the stuff they put into Mac computers, excluding the Mac Pro with a 680/780 or higher.
     
  6. brand macrumors 601

    brand

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2006
    Location:
    127.0.0.1
    #6
    21.5" form factor as well as 27" [Doubtful]
    Thinner profile, that's a given [Guaranteed]
    and a lower price please!... [Not going to happen]

    1 out of 3 ain't bad, I guess.
     
  7. Commy1 macrumors 6502a

    Commy1

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2013
    #7
    Why is a 21.5" TBD on the no list? iMac users who don't need the TV Wall panel sized computer should be able to have a matching second display to. With Mavericks supporting multi displays I think it'd be a smart move.
    I agree that the 27" won't be lowered in price, but if they made a 21.5" the price had better be lowered.
     
  8. flynz4 macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2009
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #8
    I don't understand. The laptop already has wireless. What would the display add? It is not a typical usage to run dual concurrent wireless connections.

    I would speculate that the chances of this happening are about zero.

    /Jim
     
  9. Koodauw macrumors 68040

    Koodauw

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2003
    Location:
    Madison
    #9
    I think he was refering wireless connectivity to the display a la Airplay and the appletv.
     
  10. Commy1 macrumors 6502a

    Commy1

    Joined:
    Feb 25, 2013
    #10
    Yes this is the line I was thinking on, to clean up the desktop of wires and such. Obviously Thunderbolt is a great port with obvious benefits, but I'd like the option to be able to use a TBD wirelessly.
    It's not likely, but one can hope.
     
  11. flynz4 macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2009
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #11
    Sorry... my mind went to "WiFi"... to compliment the Ethernet included in the display. I wasn't thinking about AirPlay functionality.

    /Jim
     
  12. JayMBP macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2011
    Location:
    Richmond, BC/Bellingham, WA
    #12
    I think the GPU-in-display, or rather, PCI-e-in-display would be a really cool idea. But from Apple's design philosophy, it doesn't sound all that feasible unless Apple find a way to nicely wrap current GPU cards (2 slots/gigantic heatsink and fan) and integrate into the display.

    But I guess Apple could come up with a cartridge kinda standard for other to design plug-and-play solutions.
     
  13. throAU macrumors 601

    throAU

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2012
    Location:
    Perth, Western Australia
    #13
    They stuff an entire iMac (including GPU, CPU, disk, etc) into smaller space than the current thunderbolt display, I'm sure it can be done...
     
  14. brand macrumors 601

    brand

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2006
    Location:
    127.0.0.1
    #14
    Why does the graphics card need to be huge PCIe cards? You are aware that currently out of all of the Macs with discrete GPUs the only one with a PCIe card is the Mac Pro?
     
  15. sinser macrumors 6502a

    sinser

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2003
    #15
    I'd love a 21" or 24" ACD, I can't understand why only the 27" model...
     
  16. EricT43 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2011
    #16
    Performance :)

    MacBooks and iMacs use mobile GPU's to save space, and they just can't compete with the desktop GPU's out there today. That's why Macs are not popular with gamers. And the Mac Pro is WAY overpriced to just use as a gaming rig.

    That's why for the best of both worlds, those of us that love Macs but also like playing games would love to have Apple hardware that allows PCIe graphics cards. Or at least a Thunderbolt Display that we can hook up to a PC easily. That way we could have a home-built gaming PC under the desk, and just swap with our Mac when we want to play StarCraft II or whatever.
     
  17. akm3 macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2007
    #17
    You mean like the one they just unveiled in the Mac Pro preview?
     
  18. brand macrumors 601

    brand

    Joined:
    Oct 3, 2006
    Location:
    127.0.0.1
    #18
    I guess you are not aware that desktop GPUs chips can still be used without the need of a PCIe card? Apple will not do it but it is possible.

    Additionally the GPU is not the only reason that gamers might dislike Macs like you are implying.


    Its easy, just hook the Thunderbolt Display up to a Thunderbolt capable PC. If you don't have a PC capable of Thunderbolt then buy a Cinema Display.
     
  19. EricT43 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2011
    #19
    The GPU is the main reason most gamers don't go with a Mac. By the way, I am a gamer and I chose a Mac because I love Macs. Having Ultra graphics settings in my games is not terribly important to me. When you're playing, you don't really notice anyway.

    Most Thunderbolt capable motherboards will only send video via TB from the onboard graphics. This then requires a program like Virtu GPU to redirect the GPU's output to the TB port. The possible exception is the ASRock Z77 Extreme6/TB4, which appears to have a jumper cable that will connect a GPU DisplayPort to the TB port on the mobo. I just started researching this yesterday, so far I have not seen any user-confirmed examples of someone using this to drive a ATD.
     
  20. pgiguere1, Jul 30, 2013
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2013

    pgiguere1 macrumors 68020

    pgiguere1

    Joined:
    May 28, 2009
    Location:
    Montreal, Canada
    #20
    I made a mockup of such a display on Photoshop 2 years ago. I'm reuploading it just for fun: (click to enlarge)

    [​IMG]
    My concept also had an optical drive, Gigabit ethernet, FireWire, audio line-in and an IR receiver, so basically what the MBA was lacking.

    The thing is, other than the fact that you'd likely want to upgrade your GPU more often than your display, there's also the fact that Thunderbolt doesn't have enough bandwidth to power discrete graphics to their full potential. Not even Thunderbolt 2, according to Anandtech:

     
  21. JayMBP macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2011
    Location:
    Richmond, BC/Bellingham, WA
    #21
    The thing is, ideally Apple still has to work with the industry standard to some extend.

    Thus, by going too proprietary, it reduces incentive for 3rd party manufacturers to make products for Apple.

    Think it this way, the market for TBD is already limited (among all people I know, myself and two other guys are the only few with TBD or even multi-monitor setup)

    If Apple make it too restrictive (asking 3rd party to basically custom-design a solution for an apple product that only appeal to a small percentage of Apple users), it might as well save the trouble and make it in-house. But if Apple allows an industry standard (or something with minimum modification), it would be more appealing to both current and potential users (say, people who find Apple's GPU offering too limited)
     
  22. EricT43 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2011
    #22
    I would be happy if they just put an HDMI in port on the stupid thing.
     
  23. flynz4 macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2009
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #23
    While it is technically feasible to put remote graphics into the monitor... the issue is one of bandwidth.

    Traditionally, GFX adapters are among the most demanding users of I/O bandwidth... typically using the latest generation interface (currently PCIe Gen 3), with multiple lanes and/or channels (PCIe supports up to 16 lanes). Hence, they may be designed with about 128Gb/s of total bandwidth.

    I THINK that Thunderbolt supports 4 lanes of PCIe up to a total of 10 - 20 Gb/s.

    So the issue would be getting enough performance to make it worthwhile.

    /Jim
     
  24. ggibson913, Aug 1, 2013
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2013

    ggibson913 macrumors 6502a

    ggibson913

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2006
    #24
    Curious as well

    I am kind of curious as to where Apple is going to go with this as well. Aside from no USB 3.0, there is one big weakness in the TB display, as far as I know, you cannot hook a PC up to it. That and the high price prevent me from jumping on board with it.
     
  25. DisplacedMic macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    May 1, 2009
    #25

    not so! there are PC motherboards on the market now w/ TB ports :)
    i think they're pretty expensive though-- but we mac users are used to dropping hundreds on a "logic board," so a $300 motherboard shouldn't be that big a deal.:p

    Dong Ngo is hilarious
     

Share This Page