Will I need a Dual-Link DVI adapter?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by martynmc7, Mar 29, 2010.

  1. martynmc7 macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2008
    #1
    Hi guys,

    I'm looking at getting an external monitor to setup with my 13" MBP in my office come August. I've been looking at this Dell SP2309W: http://accessories.euro.dell.com/sna/productdetail.aspx?c=uk&l=en&s=dhs&cs=ukdhs1&sku=193757 as I've heard good things about it.

    I was planning on getting just a simple mini display to DVI adapter, however, on this thread (http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=883264) someone mentioned that to drive a resolution higher than 1920x1200 you need a Dual-Link DVI adapter. The Dell monitor I was looking at supports up to 2048x1152, which does equal more pixels than 1920x1200 (2,304,000 vs. 2,359,296). So will I need Dual-Link?

    Also, if I did drive the display at full resolution how would that impact on performance, and is the 9400M even capable enough? If not, am I better sticking with a lower resolution monitor?
     
  2. Darth.Titan macrumors 68030

    Darth.Titan

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2007
    Location:
    Austin, TX
    #2
    If you want to run the display at full res, yes you will need the MDP to dual link DVI adapter.

    The 9400M is quite capable of driving your display at full resolution.

    - EDIT -

    I stand corrected. Apparently the SP2309W can in fact output the 2048x1152 resolution over a single link DVI connection. Apparently you don't need the pricier adapter.
     
  3. -Ryan- macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2009
    #3
    You are correct in suggesting that Single Link DVI only supports up to 1920x1200. You can run a higher monitor without the Mini-Displayport to Dual Link DVI cable but it will look like crap (likely to be grainy, have panning problems, not display properly etc). 2560x1600 is the maximum resolution through Dual Link DVI so that will run fine through this. The 9400M is more than capable to drive the monitor, but if you're playing games, try running them at a much lower resolution.
     
  4. martynmc7 thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2008
    #4
    Thanks for the quick replies guys. Looks like I'll be putting down some more pennies for the dual-link adapter! Thanks again!
     
  5. Hmac macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    May 30, 2007
    Location:
    Midwest USA
    #5
    I got in on the Dell E2210H (21.5 inch diag) for $149 (now $169). My daughter's 13 inch MacBook drives it at its max resolution extremely well (1920x1080) using only the regular miniDisplay port -> DVI adapter. The dual link adapter will take up one of your USB ports too.

    That 2210H also has the advantage of coming with a VGA cable and port, so it will do either VGA or DVI. It's a nice monitor, if you can get by with something just a little smaller.
     
  6. crayonshin macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2008
    Location:
    Japan
    #6
    Don't buy the dual link adapter! What the other guys said is technically correct. However, I'm guessing they don't have this monitor. Regardless of the fact that it is higher than HD resolution, Dell manages to make it work over a single link connection. I have the exact same monitor on my 13" MBP connected with the standard Apple mini displayport to DVI adapter. Works beautifully. Native resolution, no panning, etc. Again, don't ask me how they did it but bottom line is it works.
     
  7. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    Location:
    NYC
    #7
    I don't normally doubt what people post, but that's quite unbelievable. Running a 30" model at 2650x1600 on a single-link connection will not even give you the option to run at that resolution. I have many Dell monitors and I've tried.
     
  8. crayonshin macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2008
    Location:
    Japan
    #8
    Yeah, but we're talking about a 23" monitor with a 2048x1152 resolution. He mentioned it in his post.
     
  9. martynmc7 thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2008
    #9
    That's very interesting, well what I might do is get the regular DVI connector, and if that doesn't do it take it back and replace it with the dual-link DVI.

    What's the monitor like btw?
     
  10. jtara macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2009
    #10
    Single-link DVI isn't necessarily limited to 1920x1200. It's limited to any combination of height and width that fits in the bandwidth of 3.96 Gb/sec.

    Dual-link DVI isn't going to do you any good unless you have a monitor that supports it. I would guess that this monitor doesn't. You're only going to get dual-link DVI on a monitor that has a much higher resolution than this.
     
  11. alphaod macrumors Core

    alphaod

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2008
    Location:
    NYC
    #11
    I misread the OP. My mistake. Sorry. :eek:
     
  12. crayonshin macrumors member

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2008
    Location:
    Japan
    #12
    The first one I received made a really loud humming sound. After the fact, I read some other reports on the web about this issue. Dell replace it quickly though and the replacement was perfect.

    Be aware that the screen is not matte, it's a glossy screen. Not as bad as the unibody MacBooks though, maybe like the MacBook Air or previous MacBooks.
     

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