How Apple Silicon on a M1 Mac changes monitor support and what you can connect

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Comments

  • Reply 21 of 51
    Damnit Damnit Damnit. I have been waiting for these M1 computers since the transition was announced, money set aside and everything, but as I also invested in dual LG Thunderbolt 4K displays (which are bomb I may add), there is no way I'm buying another non-matching display just to use the Mac mini.

    Seriously, seriously disappointed. Apple absolutely dropped the ball here; there is literally no excuse to not support dual 4K over TB3. It was already frustrating that they dropped form 4 TB3 ports to 2 (I have zero use for USB-A now having already fully converted over due to the 13" MBP).

    Seriously Apple, WTF!?!?
    williamlondonsvanstromnmouraLahmy88
  • Reply 22 of 51
    djfriar said:
    Damnit Damnit Damnit. I have been waiting for these M1 computers since the transition was announced, money set aside and everything, but as I also invested in dual LG Thunderbolt 4K displays (which are bomb I may add), there is no way I'm buying another non-matching display just to use the Mac mini.

    Seriously, seriously disappointed. Apple absolutely dropped the ball here; there is literally no excuse to not support dual 4K over TB3. It was already frustrating that they dropped form 4 TB3 ports to 2 (I have zero use for USB-A now having already fully converted over due to the 13" MBP).

    Seriously Apple, WTF!?!?
    The fact that you're "accustomed to two monitors" and the fact that you opened with those three words forced me to think of the closing song from my favourite movie:



    On a technical point, it was for this very movie they invented the wireless mic, for Rex Harrison.
    edited November 2020 philboogiewatto_cobra
  • Reply 23 of 51
    wizard69wizard69 Posts: 13,377member
    neilm said:
    neilm said:
    Very surprised the M1 MBP can only support a single external monitor. Probably half our current MBP users have a dual monitor setup, usually a pair of 4K, in addition to the built in display. This limitation takes the M1 off my list.

    Clearly it’s not an inherent limitation of the M1 GPU, since the M1 mini can drive dual monitors.
    So can the M1 in the MBP or MBA. The internal display just counts as one of the two.

    It is absolutely a limitation of the M1.
    Duh! Of course you’re right. 

    Then it’s a surprising limitation of the M1’s GPU. Guess we may have to wait for an M2 for that.
    I'm not convinced that the GPU is powerful enough for two displays anyways.   I'm not too concerned on the entry level machines, but on the MBP, I think Apple jumped the gun! The SoC does not appear to support everything that would be ideal on a MBP.

    However they have turned the MBA into a machine that replaced both the Mac Book and the Mac Book Air.   I'm waiting on benchmarks but this really looks like the ideal travel computer for people with light needs.   The only thing it needs is a solar charging option.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 24 of 51
    wizard69wizard69 Posts: 13,377member
    Hap said:
    Hap said:
    To be clear. The ports are still USB3/TB3. They are not USB 4.

    USB 4 would mean USB data rates of 40Gbps regardless of TB support. That is not the case for these ports.

    According to Apple, the ports support this:
    • Thunderbolt 3 (up to 40Gb/s)
    • USB 3.1 Gen 2 (up to 10Gb/s)

    Yes, they have TB3, but USB4 does not require TB to operate at those speeds.
    They are USB4. 

    While the TB3 thing is correct, Apple has told us that they support full USB4 speeds, and use a USB 4 controller, making them beyond a shadow of a doubt, USB4. Because a port supports a speed, does not mean it is limited to those speeds.

    For the time being, though, there isn't very much around in regards to peripherals that support USB4.
    You're right. I missed that Apple called them USB4 above. I think was is somewhat deceiving about them though is that they don't support a lot of USB4 speeds - only 10Gb/s and not the 20Gb/s or 40Gb/s. Note I'm talking about USB speeds and not TB speeds.

    Would be nice if they actually said it support DisplayPort 2.0 which is part of the USB4 spec as well.
    We're not happy about how Apple has labeled this either. We shouldn't have had to hammer on PR folks to find out.
    Mike;
    You are not the only ones that are not happy with Apple and how they have handled this release.   It would be nice if you and AI can use whatever influence you have to express how revolting the dog and pony show was.   Much of what we are seeing confusion wise would never exist if Apple had decent spec sheets for the machines, and spent far more time in the video concisely relaying information.    Instead they went way out of  their way to commit to nothing.   As far a conveying useful information, the show is the worse I've seen from Apple.   

    This is really disgusting because M1 deserves better.    I really believe we are at the foot of a step hill of new innovation from Apple.   At least that is my hope for the future of the company because innovation in the Mac sector has been non existent for some time.   The problem is Apple can make or break any product and frankly they need to pull head form butt and stop treating their customers like idiots.
    jdb8167williamlondon
  • Reply 25 of 51
    wizard69wizard69 Posts: 13,377member
    anome said:
    neilm said:
    Very surprised the M1 MBP can only support a single external monitor. Probably half our current MBP users have a dual monitor setup, usually a pair of 4K, in addition to the built in display. This limitation takes the M1 off my list.

    Clearly it’s not an inherent limitation of the M1 GPU, since the M1 mini can drive dual monitors.
    I expect, although I have no information either way, that when we finally see an Apple Silicon 16" MBP, it will have support for two external monitors. Whether that will be through having an additional GPU, or an improved SoC GPU remains to be seen (I think they're pushing for all Apple Silicon inside the box, but there might be a transition period). This is for the reason you specify - two external monitors is a common configuration, even for just boring administrative work.

    I also hope it will come with more than 2 TB ports. I'm all in on TB3 and USB-C connectors, but only two of them isn't enough. The mini does have two additional USB-A ports and HDMI, but it's still a bit annoying to only have the two TB ports.
    People need to realize that these are entry level machines with entry level SoC's that just happen to perform really well.   Beyond performance I really doubt that the higher performing MBP, iMac and MacPro chips will look anything like this.   the M1 is clearly derived from the A series.   For the higher performance machines they will need a more robust feature set.
    jdb8167
  • Reply 26 of 51
    wizard69wizard69 Posts: 13,377member
    djfriar said:
    Damnit Damnit Damnit. I have been waiting for these M1 computers since the transition was announced, money set aside and everything, but as I also invested in dual LG Thunderbolt 4K displays (which are bomb I may add), there is no way I'm buying another non-matching display just to use the Mac mini.

    Seriously, seriously disappointed. Apple absolutely dropped the ball here; there is literally no excuse to not support dual 4K over TB3. It was already frustrating that they dropped form 4 TB3 ports to 2 (I have zero use for USB-A now having already fully converted over due to the 13" MBP).

    Seriously Apple, WTF!?!?
    It sucks but it is also a good lesson, never buy on hope!   That applies to just about everything.

    Speaking of hope, I have to wonder if the imitation is software.
  • Reply 27 of 51
    tmaytmay Posts: 5,498member
    Hap said:
    Hap said:
    To be clear. The ports are still USB3/TB3. They are not USB 4.

    USB 4 would mean USB data rates of 40Gbps regardless of TB support. That is not the case for these ports.

    According to Apple, the ports support this:
    • Thunderbolt 3 (up to 40Gb/s)
    • USB 3.1 Gen 2 (up to 10Gb/s)

    Yes, they have TB3, but USB4 does not require TB to operate at those speeds.
    They are USB4. 

    While the TB3 thing is correct, Apple has told us that they support full USB4 speeds, and use a USB 4 controller, making them beyond a shadow of a doubt, USB4. Because a port supports a speed, does not mean it is limited to those speeds.

    For the time being, though, there isn't very much around in regards to peripherals that support USB4.
    You're right. I missed that Apple called them USB4 above. I think was is somewhat deceiving about them though is that they don't support a lot of USB4 speeds - only 10Gb/s and not the 20Gb/s or 40Gb/s. Note I'm talking about USB speeds and not TB speeds.

    Would be nice if they actually said it support DisplayPort 2.0 which is part of the USB4 spec as well.
    I recall that it was on one of the graphics that Apple showed, but otherwise, not mentioned. Pretty casual for such a big deal.
  • Reply 28 of 51
    williamlondon said:
    If they showed it with a cheaper monitor then people would say, "yeah I bet it can't drive the expensive Apple monitor."

    Actually they did connect the Mini up to a 3rd party screen:


    watto_cobra
  • Reply 29 of 51
    wizard69 said:

    The SoC does not appear to support everything that would be ideal on a MBP.
    yeah this is clearly a chip that's not meant for Pro machines (and not because of the performance), Apple felt they could slap it on the 13'' MBP just because the thermals on the Intel one are horrible. I think the "actual" 13'' MBP successor will come with the redesign, in 14'' with 4 ports, and launch alongside the 16'', while the M1 will be relegated to the 12'' ultra-portable (Air / Vanilla MB). The Macbooks that just came out are clearly something that's meant to disappear quickly and personally I just see them as a DTK for the masses.
    edited November 2020 watto_cobraLahmy88
  • Reply 30 of 51
    wizard69 said:
    Hap said:
    Hap said:
    To be clear. The ports are still USB3/TB3. They are not USB 4.

    USB 4 would mean USB data rates of 40Gbps regardless of TB support. That is not the case for these ports.

    According to Apple, the ports support this:
    • Thunderbolt 3 (up to 40Gb/s)
    • USB 3.1 Gen 2 (up to 10Gb/s)

    Yes, they have TB3, but USB4 does not require TB to operate at those speeds.
    They are USB4. 

    While the TB3 thing is correct, Apple has told us that they support full USB4 speeds, and use a USB 4 controller, making them beyond a shadow of a doubt, USB4. Because a port supports a speed, does not mean it is limited to those speeds.

    For the time being, though, there isn't very much around in regards to peripherals that support USB4.
    You're right. I missed that Apple called them USB4 above. I think was is somewhat deceiving about them though is that they don't support a lot of USB4 speeds - only 10Gb/s and not the 20Gb/s or 40Gb/s. Note I'm talking about USB speeds and not TB speeds.

    Would be nice if they actually said it support DisplayPort 2.0 which is part of the USB4 spec as well.
    We're not happy about how Apple has labeled this either. We shouldn't have had to hammer on PR folks to find out.
    Mike;
    You are not the only ones that are not happy with Apple and how they have handled this release.   It would be nice if you and AI can use whatever influence you have to express how revolting the dog and pony show was.   Much of what we are seeing confusion wise would never exist if Apple had decent spec sheets for the machines, and spent far more time in the video concisely relaying information.    Instead they went way out of  their way to commit to nothing.   As far a conveying useful information, the show is the worse I've seen from Apple.   

    This is really disgusting because M1 deserves better.    I really believe we are at the foot of a step hill of new innovation from Apple.   At least that is my hope for the future of the company because innovation in the Mac sector has been non existent for some time.   The problem is Apple can make or break any product and frankly they need to pull head form butt and stop treating their customers like idiots.
    I think “disgusting” is a little strong but I agree with the sentiment. I watched the keynote hoping for more insight into Apple Silicon beyond, 3x faster, 2.5x faster etc. These SoCs are tremendously important to the industry and I barely know more after watching the keynote than I did before watching. Only once the actual Macs were up on Apple’s store did we find out that these are actually pretty low end parts when it comes to RAM and TB3/USB4 ports. That should have been explained. I can’t see the point of hiding the info for a couple of hours. A coherent explanation would have helped me understand where Apple Silicon is going. 

    I can probably assume that the “M2” will be higher end with expanded RAM and more ports but right now I really don’t know what to think. 
    edited November 2020
  • Reply 31 of 51
    neilm said:
    neilm said:
    Very surprised the M1 MBP can only support a single external monitor. Probably half our current MBP users have a dual monitor setup, usually a pair of 4K, in addition to the built in display. This limitation takes the M1 off my list.

    Clearly it’s not an inherent limitation of the M1 GPU, since the M1 mini can drive dual monitors.
    So can the M1 in the MBP or MBA. The internal display just counts as one of the two.

    It is absolutely a limitation of the M1.
    Duh! Of course you’re right. 

    Then it’s a surprising limitation of the M1’s GPU. Guess we may have to wait for an M2 for that.
    I think you've got it exactly right about the M2.
    Or the M1X?
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 32 of 51
    djfriar said:
    Damnit Damnit Damnit. I have been waiting for these M1 computers since the transition was announced, money set aside and everything, but as I also invested in dual LG Thunderbolt 4K displays (which are bomb I may add), there is no way I'm buying another non-matching display just to use the Mac mini.

    Seriously, seriously disappointed. Apple absolutely dropped the ball here; there is literally no excuse to not support dual 4K over TB3. It was already frustrating that they dropped form 4 TB3 ports to 2 (I have zero use for USB-A now having already fully converted over due to the 13" MBP).

    Seriously Apple, WTF!?!?
    I share your disappointment. I’ve bought a MBP two weeks ago, returned and bought the M1 version and didn’t even think this was something to check. This is the kind of thing you never imagine they would do. You tacitly take it for granted.

    Anyway, until they launch a better one with support for more than 1 external display, I’d like to explore all the possibilities I might have. Currently I use two external monitors with a single USB-C cable on a Kensington Docking Station (SD4700P) that has DP and HDMI outputs. I don’t need 4K+ monitors, but I really need two external monitors for my productivity developing/engineering.

    Is it possible to use two external monitors as one big stretched display in this M1, like a big wide monitor? If yes, what are the best options in your opinion to improve the usability to the closest as possible as of having two external displays? Someone mentioned the Matrox QuadHead2Go, but it’s pricey. I found that there’s the DualHead2Go that costs around 150 pounds in UK (I’m from Ireland), but I don’t know if it works for the intended purpose. Even if it works, I’d like to consider all possibilities. For a long time I thought of giving a chance to try one of those window managers apps like BetterTouchTool, Divvy, etc., but never tried. Does anybody recommend any of these?

    At first I thought of using the split view configuration on these two monitors working as a single display, but it’s too limited and too far from having two external displays.
    watto_cobrawilliamlondon
  • Reply 33 of 51
    nmoura said:
    djfriar said:
    Damnit Damnit Damnit. I have been waiting for these M1 computers since the transition was announced, money set aside and everything, but as I also invested in dual LG Thunderbolt 4K displays (which are bomb I may add), there is no way I'm buying another non-matching display just to use the Mac mini.

    Seriously, seriously disappointed. Apple absolutely dropped the ball here; there is literally no excuse to not support dual 4K over TB3. It was already frustrating that they dropped form 4 TB3 ports to 2 (I have zero use for USB-A now having already fully converted over due to the 13" MBP).

    Seriously Apple, WTF!?!?
    I share your disappointment. I’ve bought a MBP two weeks ago, returned and bought the M1 version and didn’t even think this was something to check. This is the kind of thing you never imagine they would do. You tacitly take it for granted.

    Anyway, until they launch a better one with support for more than 1 external display, I’d like to explore all the possibilities I might have. Currently I use two external monitors with a single USB-C cable on a Kensington Docking Station (SD4700P) that has DP and HDMI outputs. I don’t need 4K+ monitors, but I really need two external monitors for my productivity developing/engineering.

    Is it possible to use two external monitors as one big stretched display in this M1, like a big wide monitor? If yes, what are the best options in your opinion to improve the usability to the closest as possible as of having two external displays? Someone mentioned the Matrox QuadHead2Go, but it’s pricey. I found that there’s the DualHead2Go that costs around 150 pounds in UK (I’m from Ireland), but I don’t know if it works for the intended purpose. Even if it works, I’d like to consider all possibilities. For a long time I thought of giving a chance to try one of those window managers apps like BetterTouchTool, Divvy, etc., but never tried. Does anybody recommend any of these?

    At first I thought of using the split view configuration on these two monitors working as a single display, but it’s too limited and too far from having two external displays.
    I just received a promotional email from OWC. They say this thing works on M1 Macs, but I don't see how you could get two unique outputs from a M1 MBP. Maybe one external display is the same as the internal MBP display? Try contacting them, describe what you want to do and find out what they say. It's pretty cheap, so worth a try:

    OWC Thunderbolt 3 Dual displayport Adapter
    watto_cobraLahmy88philboogie
  • Reply 34 of 51
    neilm said:
    Very surprised the M1 MBP can only support a single external monitor. Probably half our current MBP users have a dual monitor setup, usually a pair of 4K, in addition to the built in display. This limitation takes the M1 off my list.

    Clearly it’s not an inherent limitation of the M1 GPU, since the M1 mini can drive dual monitors.
    So can the M1 in the MBP or MBA. The internal display just counts as one of the two.

    It is absolutely a limitation of the M1.
    In conclusion:  M1 is hardware-limited to two displays—either internal + external or two external displays.

    How/if Sidecar and MBA/MBP ( M1) in Clamshell-mode is affected by this limitation is presently uncertain.
    watto_cobraLahmy88
  • Reply 35 of 51
    mjtomlinmjtomlin Posts: 2,490member
    djfriar said:
    Damnit Damnit Damnit. I have been waiting for these M1 computers since the transition was announced, money set aside and everything, but as I also invested in dual LG Thunderbolt 4K displays (which are bomb I may add), there is no way I'm buying another non-matching display just to use the Mac mini.

    Seriously, seriously disappointed. Apple absolutely dropped the ball here; there is literally no excuse to not support dual 4K over TB3. It was already frustrating that they dropped form 4 TB3 ports to 2 (I have zero use for USB-A now having already fully converted over due to the 13" MBP).

    Seriously Apple, WTF!?!?

    Keep in mind that this is a first generation SoC and they are being used in low-end systems. Most of these expendability imitations all point to the Gen. 4 PCI controller not supporting enough lanes. This may be corrected in the next SoC variant (M1X?), or we may have to wait until the M2.
    Lahmy88
  • Reply 36 of 51
    For “lower-end” machines (although Apple redefined what that means with the M1), I find it personally more than an acceptable limitation.

    A 4K monitor next to the laptop screen, or two monitors on the Mini is already quite a hefty setup. 

    The iMac, Mac Pro and MacBook Pro 16” are clearly not moving to the M1 yet because they will be most likely powered by a M1X or M2, with probably more max memory, much faster GPU performance, more ports support and the ability to hook up additional monitor(s).
    williamlondonLahmy88
  • Reply 37 of 51
    flydog said:
    mr lizard said:
    I can’t work out what planet Apple are on with that photo of the six thousand dollar display connected to a $700 machine. 

    The stand for that display costs more than the computer in the same photograph. 

    Is this seriously a combination Apple expects people to buy? Do they really think that customers in the market for a $6000 display are going to buy a $700 computer to go with it?
    People on the forums are already whining that it only supports one.
    It’s marketing. Why would they visibly hook it up to a cheaper Dell monitor? 
    Sure they could partner with a vendor for the marketing but as of late Apple seems to be focusing on “first party hardware” mainly.

    The XDR Apple monitor is a poor deal for pros anyway as of today - Apple needs to refresh the specs because monitors from competitors have better specs and lower prices by now. I also feel they should introduce a much cheaper sibling akin to what they put in the recent iMacs, which could be a 5K sub $1000 monitor.
    edited November 2020
  • Reply 38 of 51
    djfriar said:
    Damnit Damnit Damnit. I have been waiting for these M1 computers since the transition was announced, money set aside and everything, but as I also invested in dual LG Thunderbolt 4K displays (which are bomb I may add), there is no way I'm buying another non-matching display just to use the Mac mini.

    Seriously, seriously disappointed. Apple absolutely dropped the ball here; there is literally no excuse to not support dual 4K over TB3. It was already frustrating that they dropped form 4 TB3 ports to 2 (I have zero use for USB-A now having already fully converted over due to the 13" MBP).

    Seriously Apple, WTF!?!?
    If you have a dual 4K monitor setup, you are not the target user of the M1 chipset, but its follow-up bigger brother chip next year. 
    It was clear from this transition early on Apple would start with replacing the low-end spec. Why are you then disappointed? Just keep using whatever machine you have that powers the monitor setup, and transition into something even more awesome next year. 
    Lahmy88
  • Reply 39 of 51
    I have 2 x LG Ultrafine 4K monitors and an Intel MBA.

    I run both monitors from a single TB port, the monitors are daisy chained.

    Is this not possible with the MM M1?? 

    Are there any downside to connecting one LG to TB and the other LG to HDMI if I went with the MM M1? Apart from untidy wires?
    Lahmy88williamlondon
  • Reply 40 of 51
    I have 2 x LG Ultrafine 4K monitors and an Intel MBA.

    I run both monitors from a single TB port, the monitors are daisy chained.

    Is this not possible with the MM M1?? 

    Are there any downside to connecting one LG to TB and the other LG to HDMI if I went with the MM M1? Apart from untidy wires?
    Apparently not. The SoC seems to be bandwidth limited. It looks like even though the SoC supports two TB3 ports, it doesn’t have enough bandwidth to support video out to both. Surprising to me. I guess doing your own TB3/USB4 hardware is pretty difficult. 
    Lahmy88
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