Using an HDMI switch to share a 20" Apple HD Cinema Display

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by quantum003, Sep 28, 2009.

  1. quantum003 macrumors 6502a

    quantum003

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2009
    Location:
    Superposition
    #1
    Hi all,

    I have two towers next to my desk at home... my main Mac Pro and my "workhorse" 1.8Ghz dual G5 tower. I have two monitors connected to my Mac Pro, a 20" Apple HD Cinema Display (DVI) and a 23" Apple HD Cinema Display (DVI). I have been using one of the cute 17" Plastic Apple Displays with ADC to view the output of the G5 tower while it's toiling away on something, but I'd prefer to switch the output of the secondary 20" Apple HD Cinema Display between my Mac Pro and the G5 instead, if possible.

    So, I've had my eye out for a cheap DVI KVM switch that will support 1600x1200 resolution for the 20" monitor. But then today I came across one of these HDMI switches brand new at the thrift store for $5:

    [​IMG]

    So of course I bought it. But I don't have the necessary dongles I would need to connect my Macs yet; so I want to ask whether or not this would work before I buy them:

    Connect a DVI to HDMI cable to both the Mac Pro and the G5 and send them both into the HDMI switch. Then, take the HDMI dongle out of the switch box and into the DVI connector of the 20" Apple display. Would I still have beautiful, dreamy resolution on my 20" Apple Display when I switch back and forth between the Mac Pro and the G5? Would the switch even work?

    Thanks. :D
     
  2. JKColo22 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2009
    #2
    Can't think of any reason it wouldn't... Since it is a monitor and not an LCD TV the resolution should come out just fine. Now as for whether a $5 switch procured from a thrift store will actually *work* or not, is a matter of trying it out!
     
  3. quantum003 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    quantum003

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2009
    Location:
    Superposition
    #3
    Excellent point good sir. :D

    Reading some of the reviews for the switch on Amazon is disheartening because a lot of people report that it is a piece of junk. Interesting enough the device was originally offered at $400... and is now on sale for just $45 new... :eek:

    Kind of makes you wonder...
     
  4. jw2002 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2008
    #4
    I've never liked these switches since the bad old days when people used them to "share" their dot matrix printers. If you have one mac that you use most of the time, then dedicate the best display(s) to that mac. Let the other mac go headless and just use screen sharing to view its current state. That's why we have networking: so we don't have to flip clunky switches to see what is going on with the adjacent computer...
     
  5. quantum003 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    quantum003

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2009
    Location:
    Superposition
    #5
    :eek: It's all about the dual monitors homeslice! :eek:

    Shockingly enough, the HDMI switch worked perfectly. The resolution is 1680x1024 or something similar and both computers display perfectly taking the HDMI signal out of the switch. I set up the HDMI switch on a ledge directly beneath the glass surface of my desk, when I point the remote and press the button it switches from my Mac Pro's secondary display to a primary display for my G5.

    I'm thrilled to have such a great solution for so cheap. BUT I still have to get up to switch the keyboard/mouse, which is an enormous pain in the butt. I don't want to move. At all. I need a tech tool to do it for me. :D
     
  6. skorpien macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2008
    #6
    A tool such as a KVM switch? :p

    Great solution for the video part though.

    Edit:

    Looky what I found.
    Or for the DIYers out there.
     
  7. milk242 macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2007
    #7
    Try using teleport for your mouse and keyboard switching needs. It's a small software that runs on both computers and its free.
     

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