Zotac dual HDMI adapter on MBA

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by jamesr19, Nov 27, 2011.

  1. jamesr19 macrumors 6502

    Nov 7, 2009
    I would like to have a 3 monitor setup (MBA, primary 24" and a 3rd 19"). I'm looking at USB -> DVI but have come across the Zotac Dual HDMI adapter which supports Mac.

    I was wondering if anyone has any experience with it..can you run two displays with different resolutions? does it show up as one display or multiple displays? does it actually work with the MBA '11 13"?


  2. Heavertron macrumors regular

    Jun 2, 2011
    MBA can only run two screens (including it's built in display) due to the intel HD3000 graphics.

    The product you linked is a splitter, so it will allow a mirror of one display to be shown on two external displays. It would not allow two external displays in screen spanning mode.
  3. jamesr19 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Nov 7, 2009
    thanks for the reply but I don't want a technical reply with a theory more real world experience.
    For instance it works with a MBP which doesn't allow for dual Display Port even though the 2011 model can support 2 thunderbolt it can't support 2 mini display port...
  4. The-Pro macrumors 65816

    Dec 2, 2010
    what was posted is all you need to know really.
    The MacBook Air can't support 3 screen set ups. As the product you linked is a splitter it will not be able to display 2 different images on different screens but only mirror the images on two screens.
  5. paulrbeers macrumors 68040

    Dec 17, 2009
    Just tried it on my setup: The HDMI outputs would only allow me to mirror the additional two screens. My MBP allows me to use all three as seperate displays, but not on my MBA. Bummer.
  6. jamesr19 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Nov 7, 2009
    Thanks! Looks like USB -> DVI it will be
  7. obsidianreq macrumors newbie

    Dec 2, 2011
    Hey paulrbeers, do you have the Thunderbolt Model MBP?

    I got one of the Zotac Adapters with my 2011 MBP and cannot get it to detect my displays. Did you have to do anything special?
  8. monnone macrumors newbie

    Dec 3, 2011
    I'm looking into this solution as well. Subscribed...
  9. winchest macrumors regular

    Aug 5, 2006
    Anyone have any luck getting the Zotac to work with a 13" Thunderbolt MBP? I can get it to mirror displays, but nothing more. Possibly this is related to the integrated graphics similar to the MBA?
  10. Macman45 macrumors G5


    Jul 29, 2011
    Somewhere Back In The Long Ago
    Out Of Interest

    What would that look like on my Toshiba HDMI smart TV.....? Worth buying?

    I don't really need it in this room, but I have a 42 (older) HD tv in the bedroom that would be great for my AIR (and my tired eyes) !
  11. paulrbeers macrumors 68040

    Dec 17, 2009
    Sorry hadn't looked at this thread in awhile....

    Yes all my mac's are now thunderbolt enabled. I am able to do use the Zotac device on my thunderbolt enabled MBP as well as my Mac Mini and MBA (see note above that the screens are mirrored only for the MBA, although I suppose in clam shell mode it might to dual screens, haven't tried it).


    Yes this is the same issue as my MBA. The integrated graphics chip only allows for two displays (i.e. the LCD in your laptop and a single output display).
  12. notdavis macrumors newbie

    Jan 5, 2012
    I just tried this on my 13" MBP pre-thunderbolt. Display shows as "Dual-HDMI" and spans both monitors.

    It won't detect the two external monitors as separate devices but treats them as one giant monitor (slightly annoying because everything that pop's up centered shows up 50/50).

    This is while the MBP is closed. Using two external displays that are the same make / model.
  13. TheJing macrumors 6502a


    Jun 13, 2011
    Somewhere in Europe
    I have the Macbook Pro 13". And as I speak I'm running two external 24" screens plus the built-in one. I bought a Deltaco USB-DVI graphics display adapter. It works really well except that mission control is a little slow to come up. Except for that, I can watch videos and everything on the screen runnning of the USB adaptor without any sort of lag. System Preferences recognizes the third display connected via USB as a seperate screen so it behaves exactly like only one display connected via the display port would.
  14. hobbsh macrumors newbie

    Feb 19, 2012
    Anyone have any updates about this? I bought one before I did the research and I am only getting the displays to mirror, they won't span. I am running a Late 2011 13" MBP with Thunderbolt. Thinking it is a limitation with the HD3000. Or the device could not be Thunderbolt compatible. I spent an hour on the phone with Apple about this and have been referred to the highest level "specialist" who takes 4 days to respond. I plan on calling Zotac tomorrow.

    @paulrbeers - I'm assuming you got it to work on your 15" MBP with an ATI/NVidia GPU?
  15. Acorn macrumors 68020


    Jan 2, 2009
  16. hobbsh macrumors newbie

    Feb 19, 2012
    Are you saying Zotac is misadvertising when it claims it adapter can support two external displays with a maximum spanned resolution of 3840x1080?

    Theoretically, a 15" macbook pro (with an Intel HD 3000 and an ATI/Nvidia graphics card) will work with this as paulrbeers claims. I don't think it's the adapter, I think it's the HD 3000. I actually just spend $2000 to see if this $50 adapter will work like I want it to. Hope I'm right.
  17. jamesr19 thread starter macrumors 6502

    Nov 7, 2009
    That's the same adapter that I bought. It works well on mac. The drivers aren't great but it still does a good job for a good price!

    My friends have 15" Pro fully specced and it works as mentioned above. It creates one monitor out of two (so the menu bar will span across both monitors and so too will the windows. Divy will be a good solution for using this setup. The only other setup to the USB->DVI for two independent monitors would be duel ATDs

    It will support 3840x1080 = 2x 1080p monitors. Monitors need to be the same resolution to work well

    Hope that helps clarify stuff
  18. msun macrumors newbie

    Dec 14, 2011
    actually, display link doesn't have it's own graphics card. it still uses the gpu in your mac but provides a virtual graphics card. the downside is that you don't get any extra video processing power, and there is a lag in converting the video to usb and back to dvi.
  19. Acorn macrumors 68020


    Jan 2, 2009
    thanks for the information :)
  20. dtjames macrumors newbie

    Apr 3, 2012
    I have two HDMI 1920x1080 monitors.

    If I got one of these adapters, what would be the maximum resolution I could run on EACH screen?

    I know, technically, the adapter supports the full resolution, but does the graphics output of my 15" MacBook Pro (Late 2011) also support it?

    The Apple site quotes "Dual display and video mirroring: Simultaneously supports full native resolution on the built-in display and up to 2560 by 1600 pixels on an external display, both at millions of colors".

    Would this not mean 2 x 1280 x 1600 maximum on the external screens ?

    Clarification from someone 'in the know' would be fab.

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