Using Thunderbolt vs HDMI for my external monitor

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Xeroday, Oct 27, 2013.

  1. Xeroday macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2013
    #1
    I recently purchased a new rMBP 13", which has both a dedicated HDMI port and Thunderbolt ports. I previously owned a Macbook Air, which only had a Thunderbolt port.

    I have a Thunderbolt to HDMI cable that I used on my Air to hook up an external monitor.

    The big question is: On my new Macbook Pro, is there any benefit to using the dedicated HDMI port or should I continue using my Thunderbolt to HDMI cable?

    Also quick bonus: Does running a higher resolution (for more space) actually impact performance?
     
  2. zipur macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2011
    Location:
    The great state of Texas
    #2
    Good Question I would like to know also.
     
  3. yokken macrumors member

    yokken

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2013
    #3
    If the Thunderbolt->HDMI cable supports audio through Thunderbolt alone, then you're fine. Otherwise the HDMI port definitely passes audio. Haven't tried any DRM'd movies to test HDCP compliance but I'm guessing it'd work in both scenarios. I switched to the native HDMI port just so I don't have to use my adapter that can break.
     
  4. Agent-P macrumors 68030

    Agent-P

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2009
    Location:
    The Tri-State Area
    #4
    As yokken pointed out, the main difference would be whether or not your thunderbolt/hdmi cable supported audio. Otherwise there is no difference using one or the other. Use whichever you find more convenient.

    Are you referencing running a higher resolution on the external monitor or on the built in display of your Mac?
     
  5. Xeroday thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2013
    #5
    Thanks for the responses. My monitor doesn't have speakers, so the sound isn't really an issue. I'll continue using my Thunderbolt for now since there's not much of a difference.

    I meant running a higher scaled resolution on the retina display on my mac. Since the default on my 13" seems to be 1280 by 800, and I'd rather prefer the 1440 by 900 version.
     
  6. Agent-P macrumors 68030

    Agent-P

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2009
    Location:
    The Tri-State Area
    #6
    Some people say it does, but I'm also running my 13" rMBP at 1440x900 scaled and I haven't noticed any significant drops in performance. Though it may just depend on what you're doing.
     
  7. Yodabeesh macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2013
    #7
    I also had this question. I currently have a rMB with HDMI. I'm looking at external monitors that support 2560x1440. These are significantly less expensive than the 27" Apple display. If I used HDMI-to-HDMI connection, would I be able to realize the full 2560x1440 resolution on a non-Apple external display?
     
  8. Freyqq macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Dec 13, 2004
    #8
    No reason not to use the hdmi, as it leaves the thunderbolt open for other things.
     
  9. Zeov macrumors 6502a

    Zeov

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2011
    Location:
    Odense
    #9
    theres no difference. Use the HDMI port, and leave the thunderbolt open for other things in the future ,
     
  10. nateo200 macrumors 68030

    nateo200

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2009
    Location:
    Northern District NY
    #10
    Depends. The HDMI port can support up to 4K 30Hz on the early 2013 rMBP's while the late 2013 rMBP's support up to 4K 60Hz....either way its a software issue since Apple didn't want 4K over HDMI on the earlier MBP's but updated it. Theres a whole thread for this topic.
     

Share This Page