Apple adds 5K support to MacBook Pro as target display mode remains absent for Retina iMac

Posted:
in Current Mac Hardware edited October 2015
The new 15-inch MacBook Pro has become the third Apple computer to ship with the ability to drive high-resolution 5K displays, but Apple's flagship 5K device -- the iMac with Retina 5K display --?continues to lack the popular target display mode feature.




Apple revealed 5K support for the latest 15-inch MacBook Pro revision in a Thursday support document update. The company says its latest power-user laptop can drive Dell's UP2715K 27-inch 5K monitor when equipped with the optional AMD Radeon R9 M370X graphics chip.

Previously, only the latest Mac Pro and iMac with Retina 5K display were certified for use with that monitor, which remains the only 5K monitor Apple officially supports.

Meanwhile, Apple has yet to enable target display mode for its high-resolution iMac. This popular feature, which until now was present on all Mini DisplayPort-equipped iMacs, allows users to connect their iMac to another Apple computer and use it as though it were an external display.

There is no official word on why Apple has not added target display mode for the Retina iMac, but bandwidth restrictions imposed by DisplayPort 1.2 are a likely culprit. That situation may change this fall, when Intel's Skylake platform --?which ships with DisplayPort 1.3 --?is rumored to begin rolling out and will likely bring with it wider support for 5K displays throughout Apple's lineup.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 19
    Quote:

    the iMac with Retina 5K display — continues to lack the popular target display mode feature.


    And so appropriate that the article shows us a picture of the supported Dell monitor!  Brilliant... and emphaszes the "missing" Apple product!

  • Reply 2 of 19
    calicali Posts: 3,495member
    27 inch 5k display?

    What a freaking joke.
  • Reply 3 of 19
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by cali View Post



    27 inch 5k display?



    What a freaking joke.



    How so? I absolutely love my iMac 5K. 

  • Reply 4 of 19
    suddenly newtonsuddenly newton Posts: 13,762member
    I'm kind of curious as to why a non-existent feature that Apple never promised in the iMac 5K Retina (target display mode) is mentioned as "still not available" in an article about MacBook Pro. There are lots of non-existent things that Apple has never promised, such as the fabled Apple television or a standalone 5K display or 4K movies in the iTunes Store. How does it make sense to report on non-existent features still not existing?
  • Reply 5 of 19
    9secondko9secondko Posts: 929member
    Larger 5k MBP incoming...
  • Reply 6 of 19
    sflocalsflocal Posts: 4,674member

    I came close to buying the 5K iMac to replace my aging 2009 model.  I just felt it was let out of the oven a bit too soon.  I wouldn't mind using my old iMac as an external monitor alongside the new iMac.  They way they got the current Thunderbolt spec to run on 5K - while impressive - seemed more a bandaid approach until the new Thunderbolt spec would arrive alongside Skylake.



    I see that 5K iMac at the store on those occasions I walk in, and it's a beautiful piece of hardware.  Whatever iMac I buy next will be for the next 5+ years.  I want to make sure it's what I want that justifies the money I will spend on it.

  • Reply 7 of 19
    dysamoriadysamoria Posts: 2,257member
    Wait, so how does the new MacBook support 5K if displayport/thunderbolt doesn't currently support it?
  • Reply 8 of 19
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by dysamoria View Post



    Wait, so how does the new MacBook support 5K if displayport/thunderbolt doesn't currently support it?



    Using two DisplayPort cables.

  • Reply 9 of 19
    suddenly newtonsuddenly newton Posts: 13,762member
    9secondko wrote: »
    Larger 5k MBP incoming...

    BREAKING!!! The non-existent 17" MBPr continues to still not exist.
  • Reply 10 of 19
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by 9secondko View Post



    Larger 5k MBP incoming...



    but please dont hold your breath.....

  • Reply 11 of 19
    jessijessi Posts: 302member
    This is just software, likely fixed in the next OS X I bet.
  • Reply 12 of 19
    mstonemstone Posts: 11,510member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Suddenly Newton View Post





    BREAKING!!! The non-existent 17" MBPr continues to still not exist.



    I would buy one though. My reason is when I travel, I remote desktop into my Mac Pro or iMac 5K a lot because I need access to the internal network storage and servers and the screen size disparity with my retina MBP 15 makes things really small so I waste a lot of time zooming and panning. I have to admit that the new iMac 5K is really quite crisp even on the compressed remote view.

  • Reply 13 of 19
    haggarhaggar Posts: 1,568member
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post



    Meanwhile, Apple has yet to enable target display mode for its high-resolution iMac.

     

    Do you mean no target display mode at 5K resolution or no target display mode at all?

  • Reply 14 of 19
    foljsfoljs Posts: 341member
    Quote:


    I'm kind of curious as to why a non-existent feature that Apple never promised in the iMac 5K Retina (target display mode) is mentioned as "still not available" in an article about MacBook Pro. There are lots of non-existent things that Apple has never promised, such as the fabled Apple television or a standalone 5K display or 4K movies in the iTunes Store. How does it make sense to report on non-existent features still not existing?


     

    First of all, because this is an Apple rumor site (or at least that's what it started primarily as). So it's frequently all about things rumored to come but not existing yet.



    Second, because this is a feature that was present in previous iMac models and has been removed from this model. It's also quite a major and useful feature, unless you want your iMac to be a large door-stop when the CPU it has gets behind the times. So it makes sense to think of it as a "still not available" feature that will make a comeback. 



    You know, like the early iPhone didn't have 3G support or cut-and-paste, but everybody knew it would be coming. Those were "still not available" features too. There are literally tons of similar examples.



    What doesn't make sense to me is why would you want all this spelt out to you. Isn't it obvious?

  • Reply 15 of 19
    konqerrorkonqerror Posts: 685member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Jessi View Post



    This is just software, likely fixed in the next OS X I bet.

     

    No it's not. Target Display Mode works by having a DisplayPort switch between the graphics card and panel. The panel runs on eDP which is simply routed to an external port. The problem seems to be that the Retina panel runs a overclocked eDP link which exceeds the standards for current DP.

  • Reply 16 of 19
    I want a 5K Macbook!
  • Reply 17 of 19

    The 5k iMac is a work of art.

     

    I can't wait for the Skylake one to arrive with a better gpu to push that 5k display.  (Oh, and those 15 inch MacbookPro PCIe SSD speeds too...)

     

    Then I'm on it.

     

    Lemon Bon Bon.

  • Reply 18 of 19
    asciiascii Posts: 5,941member

    Target Display Mode was a major feature for me in the past. It allowed me to have an iMac as my main computer, and a gaming PC under my desk, plugged in to the back of the iMac, and just press Command-F2 if I ever wanted to game.

  • Reply 19 of 19
    aknabiaknabi Posts: 173member
    Quote:


    Quote:

    I'm kind of curious as to why a non-existent feature that Apple never promised in the iMac 5K Retina (target display mode) is mentioned as "still not available" in an article about MacBook Pro. There are lots of non-existent things that Apple has never promised, such as the fabled Apple television or a standalone 5K display or 4K movies in the iTunes Store. How does it make sense to report on non-existent features still not existing? 


     



    First of all, because this is an Apple rumor site (or at least that's what it started primarily as). So it's frequently all about things rumored to come but not existing yet.



    Second, because this is a feature that was present in previous iMac models and has been removed from this model. It's also quite a major and useful feature, unless you want your iMac to be a large door-stop when the CPU it has gets behind the times. So it makes sense to think of it as a "still not available" feature that will make a comeback. 



    You know, like the early iPhone didn't have 3G support or cut-and-paste, but everybody knew it would be coming. Those were "still not available" features too. There are literally tons of similar examples.



    What doesn't make sense to me is why would you want all this spelt out to you. Isn't it obvious?


     

    And even with the refresh still missing.

     

    So funny reading the comments... I've been into Apple since the 1st West Coast computer faire and Woz was my hardware mentor in high school and Jobs and I had many mutual friends. This is a bozo move (and yes they can technically support it... but it would cost a slight bit of money and hurt margins, though I would argue they'd get higher sales for those on the fence).

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