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  1. #1

    happyforyou's Avatar
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    Jan 09, 2014
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    Specs:
    2011 2.5 GHz i5 iMac
    Connecting two 20" Cinema Displays (A1081) to Early 2011 13" Macbook Pro
    Can't believe how difficult it is to find the exact scenario I find myself inů

    I have an early 2011 13" MBP that I hope to connect two 20" ACD's (model #A1081) to. Is this a possibility? If so, in addition to the $29 MiniDisplay to DV adapter, what else do I need to get the second ACD set up?

    The only similar scenario I was able to find used two 30" ACD's and it was not successful.

    Thanks for any suggestions.

  2. #2

    bobtomay's Avatar
    Member Since
    Dec 22, 2006
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    Specs:
    15" MBP '06 2.33 C2D 4GB 10.7; 13" MBA '14 1.8 i7 8GB 10.11; 21" iMac '13 2.9 i5 8GB 10.11; 6S
    Matrox dualhead2go - link

    If you haven't found a ton of google results try searching for "Macbook Pro dual monitors"
    I cannot be held responsible for the things that come out of my mouth.
    In the Windows world, most everything folks don't understand is called a virus.

  3. #3

    pigoo3's Avatar
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    May 20, 2008
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    2011 13" MBP 2.3ghz, 8gig ram, OS 10.8.5
    Quote Originally Posted by happyforyou View Post
    The only similar scenario I was able to find used two 30" ACD's and it was not successful.
    FYI. In order to connect one of the older 30" ACD's to newer MBP's...you need the $99 dollar Dual Link DVI adapter:

    Mini DisplayPort to Dual-Link DVI Adapter - Apple Store (U.S.)

    How do I know...I have 30" ACD connected to a 2011 MBP (with the $99 adapter).

    This doesn't solve how to connect two of these 30" displays to a 2011 MBP...but it explains how to properly connect one.

    As far as your situation. The Thunderbolt port does allow for multiple external displays...but you need to purchase Thunderbolt capable external monitors ($$$$ Big Bucks $$$$).

    Realistically...Apple laptops & iMacs are really setup to easily attach a single external display. Attaching multiple external displays with these computers gets more difficult and/or expensive. It's not impossible...just harder & more expensive.

    If you REALLY need a lot of external displays...desktop Mac Pro's are definitely better suited for this need.

    - Nick
    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
    - Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some slow computer tips: Speedup
    - Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
    - Apple Battery Info. Battery

  4. #4

    happyforyou's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jan 09, 2014
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    Specs:
    2011 2.5 GHz i5 iMac
    Sorry, bobtomay... I should have been more clear. I did google extensively on this topic and none of the scenarios matched mine, which is why I came here. Thank you for the link. I'll have to take a closer look at that, though it seems more geared toward Windows.

    pigoo3, thank you very much. I read your posts about the 30" monitors and was hoping you would respond! Not able to switch to the Thunderbolt displays just yet, just stuck with a pair of A1081's at the moment. I have a Mac Pro1,1 but given Apple's propensity for surprising unsuspecting customers (and their wallets), I suddenly cannot run the new release of Logic X, which is why I asked about the 2011 MBP using the two ACD's from my now defunct 2006 MBP forever lodged at 32-bit obsolescence

    Thanks for the replies. I'm now a single-monitor muso for the time being.

  5. #5

    bobtomay's Avatar
    Member Since
    Dec 22, 2006
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    15" MBP '06 2.33 C2D 4GB 10.7; 13" MBA '14 1.8 i7 8GB 10.11; 21" iMac '13 2.9 i5 8GB 10.11; 6S
    No, it's not more for Windows.

    Your other option will be to use the mdp to DVI adapter for one monitor and a USB to DVI adapter for the 2nd monitor - something like this.
    I cannot be held responsible for the things that come out of my mouth.
    In the Windows world, most everything folks don't understand is called a virus.

  6. #6

    pigoo3's Avatar
    Member Since
    May 20, 2008
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    Specs:
    2011 13" MBP 2.3ghz, 8gig ram, OS 10.8.5
    Quote Originally Posted by happyforyou View Post
    Not able to switch to the Thunderbolt displays just yet, just stuck with a pair of A1081's at the moment. I have a Mac Pro1,1 but given Apple's propensity for surprising unsuspecting customers (and their wallets), I suddenly cannot run the new release of Logic X, which is why I asked about the 2011 MBP using the two ACD's from my now defunct 2006 MBP forever lodged at 32-bit obsolescence
    Thanks a lot for all the "situation details". A completely understandable situation...and I see where you are coming from wanting/needing all the monitors.

    One suggestion that may seem like a lot of work...but may be a nice solution in the long term. Sell the old Mac Pro 1,1...then get at least a Mac Pro 3,1 or 4,1.

    With the 3,1 or 4,1 you get (as I figure you may know):

    - 64 bit EFI
    - 8 cores
    - able to run the latest OS (Mavericks)



    - Nick
    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
    - Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some slow computer tips: Speedup
    - Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
    - Apple Battery Info. Battery

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