Second monitor

Cowabunga

Member
Location
Ceredigion,Wales
I recently bought a new 27" iMac to replace my 2011 21" iMac. Nothing wrong with the old one for basic tasks. Then I had the bright idea of using the 21" as a second monitor. Bought a Thunderbolt3 to Thunderbolt2 adapter, which Apple charge an extortionate amount for, plus a metre long Thunderbolt2 cable and connected both together, press Command-F2 and the 21" magically becomes an extension to the bigger computer.

Moving windows from one to the other screen, as well as the mouse pointer, is seamless and works as if it was one wide screen.

Highly recommended. As an example, yesterday I was filling some complex form out for HMRC and I could keep the instructions open on half of one screen with TFF [what else!] open on the other half, while following the instructions and filling the form, checking and submitting it on the other screen.
Brilliant.

Here is a picture I took just now of me comparing TV models and prices while having TFF open on the left

IMG_3102.jpeg


If you look carefully there are two tabs on the left window. I could have multiple tabs on each of those windows and as it is there are other windows open for the business behind these, including email and a Chrome browser window. The tabs are activated by clicking on them, as you all know, and the hidden windows by sweeping sideways, two-fingered, on the Magic Mouse. If I wanted a view of all available open windows then a two fingered double tap on the top of the mouse shrinks all windows and displays them at the top so that I can choose one to bring to the front, by clicking on it or restore to as before by another two-fingered double tap. A single fingered tap zooms in on a column of text or picture, and another restores.

I just continue to be amazed by these machines.
 
Last edited:

An Gof

Member
Location
Cornwall
I recently bought a new 27" iMac to replace my 2011 21" iMac. Nothing wrong with the old one for basic tasks. Then I had the bright idea of using the 21" as a second monitor. Bought a Thunderbolt3 to Thunderbolt2 adapter, which Apple charge an extortionate amount for, plus a metre long Thunderbolt2 cable and connected both together, press Command-F2 and the 21" magically becomes an extension to the bigger computer.

Moving windows from one to the other screen, as well as the mouse pointer, is seamless and works as if it was one wide screen.

Highly recommended. As an example, yesterday I was filling some complex form out for HMRC and I could keep the instructions open on half of one screen with TFF [what else!] open on the other half, while following the instructions and filling the form, checking and submitting it on the other screen.
Brilliant.

Here is a picture I took just now of me comparing TV models and prices while having TFF open on the left

View attachment 906310

If you look carefully there are two tabs on the left window. I could have multiple tabs on each of those windows and as it is there are other windows open for the business behind these, including email and a Chrome browser window. The tabs are activated by clicking on them, as you all know, and the hidden windows by sweeping sideways, two-fingered, on the Magic Mouse. If I wanted a view of all available open windows then a two fingered double tap on the top of the mouse shrinks all windows and displays them at the top so that I can choose one to bring to the front, by clicking on it or restore to as before by another two-fingered double tap. A single fingered tap zooms in on a column of text or picture, and another restores.

I just continue to be amazed by these machines.

With my OCD looking at those two different size monitors would do my head in 🤣 They really need to be the same size 👍 Looks like a bodge up job like that 🤣🤣🤣
PS thanks for the tip 👍
 

Dry Rot

Member
Livestock Farmer
Well, I grumble about my Mac but I have been using two monitors for years. It is a natural for video editing and I don't really undertand how anyone can make do with one, though with this iMac and the 27 inch screen it is a lot easier. Just amazed the light has only just dawned for some.
 

Cowabunga

Member
Location
Ceredigion,Wales
The size difference is not an issue. Indeed many people use iPads as second monitors.

I've often used a 12" iPad Pro in conjunction with the main computer for the last few years but not controlled by the same mouse and keyboard, independently from each other. That works fine with a stand for the tablet. The second bluetooth keyboard can be used for the iPad as well.
I would probably not have bought a second monitor specifically for this. However since I now have a spare iMac that is worth more to me than to anyone else, might as well use it. With a keystroke it works as its own independent computer if I like, just like I used to use an iPad.

Should mention that my iPad Pro and current iPads can, I believe, be coupled to the latest iMac and Macbooks and used as a second monitor controlled by the main computer, just as the setup I illustrated in the OP works. This can either be wireless or wire-coupled using an app called Sidecar


So there are all kinds of solutions available to suit the equipment available and the demands of the user.
 
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Cowabunga

Member
Location
Ceredigion,Wales
Here is a picture of my 21" decoupled and asleep, but with the iPad used as a second monitor using wireless 'Sidecar'. It works exactly like the sleeping iMac with its screen being a seamless extention of the host machine's screen, in this case the 27".

One thing that tickles me with either setup is that when my screensaver activates, which the 27" initiates on both screens are always different for each screen. The hot corner I use to manually launch the screensaver, the bottom right, also works on the second screen, including the iPad.

IMG_3103.jpeg
IMG_3104.jpeg
 

Cowabunga

Member
Location
Ceredigion,Wales
You need to give that desk a tidy!
Ha! I was waiting for someone to comment. Its a work in progress. You can see three hard drives there, including a RAID pair, and there is another behind, giving the 27" machine seven terrabytes of storage in all plus the 21" with now only the internal 500GB most of which has been copied over to the big'un. Then there's the well worn Vicon Rotoflow fertiliser chart book in red. A couple of smartplugs that work with Alexa that I removed yesterday. A few forms that I need to fill and underneath a pile of cow management action lists and PD results that have already been input. Plus the obligitory calculator of course.
Over the next few days it will be cleared and rearranged so that the two computers fit tidily in the alcove, taking up less space. I've needed access around the back over the last few days to connect them.

Of special delight to me is the result of the Speedtest, which you can see on the larger computer desktop above. Note that it says 76mbps download and 26 upload, which is a record for me and my 4G broadband. It is very variable though and normally measures about 14 to 18 down and 16 to 18 up, which is a vast improvement over the 1.8 to 2.5 down and 0.8 up I get from BT copper wire broadband.

These are the above average results from different times this evening

Screenshot 2020-09-08 at 23.11.26.png
 
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Oat

Member
Location
Cheshire
I have 2 monitors and the laptop screen- so 3x screens.

I know some people just use 1x monitor and close their laptop, so they still have one only screen. I can understand a monitor is often bigger than a laptop screen, but in my opinion once you have more than screen available, you never go back
 

Tomr10

Member
U
Ha! I was waiting for someone to comment. Its a work in progress. You can see three hard drives there, including a RAID pair, and there is another behind, giving the 27" machine seven terrabytes of storage in all plus the 21" with now only the internal 500GB most of which has been copied over to the big'un. Then there's the well worn Vicon Rotoflow fertiliser chart book in red. A couple of smartplugs that work with Alexa that I removed yesterday. A few forms that I need to fill and underneath a pile of cow management action lists and PD results that have already been input. Plus the obligitory calculator of course.
Over the next few days it will be cleared and rearranged so that the two computers fit tidily in the alcove, taking up less space. I've needed access around the back over the last few days to connect them.

Of special delight to me is the result of the Speedtest, which you can see on the larger computer desktop above. Note that it says 76mbps download and 26 upload, which is a record for me and my 4G broadband. It is very variable though and normally measures about 14 to 18 down and 16 to 18 up, which is a vast improvement over the 1.8 to 2.5 down and 0.8 up I get from BT copper wire broadband.

These are the above average results from different times this evening

View attachment 906500
Screenshot_20200910-184027_Speedtest.jpg


For wifi mines not to bad better when hard wired. They do say go to biggest monitor you can before going to more. Run 2 and laptop in work and one plus laptop at home. Did try using tv but could never get res right
 
Ok, so I reneged on my promise but there is a bit of posh totty and some machine porn on offer. You may have to squint a bit. The keyboard is a microsoft comfort curve 4000 I think and the mouse is a Razer Naga that is on it's last legs and soon to be replaced with the same again. Monitors are x2 24inch and 1x 27inch LGs, all the same resolution and not 4K or anything clever so they were literally as cheap as they come. The left hand screen has got a bit of 'freezer burn' from having the same windows open for so long (I used to have my browser open and full of tabs for more than 6 hours a day for a year whilst I was studying full time). You may notice that the colour and contrast balance on all 3 screens differs slightly but I've meddled with them all and can't ge them to match.

20200910_224313.jpg
 

Great In Grass

Member
Location
Cornwall.
Ok, so I reneged on my promise but there is a bit of posh totty and some machine porn on offer. You may have to squint a bit. The keyboard is a microsoft comfort curve 4000 I think and the mouse is a Razer Naga that is on it's last legs and soon to be replaced with the same again. Monitors are x2 24inch and 1x 27inch LGs, all the same resolution and not 4K or anything clever so they were literally as cheap as they come. The left hand screen has got a bit of 'freezer burn' from having the same windows open for so long (I used to have my browser open and full of tabs for more than 6 hours a day for a year whilst I was studying full time). You may notice that the colour and contrast balance on all 3 screens differs slightly but I've meddled with them all and can't ge them to match.

View attachment 906899
I have a Spyder monitor calibration tool by Data color & can I get the two monitors to match!
 

Cowabunga

Member
Location
Ceredigion,Wales
I never knew that multiple monitors were so popular.

The beauty of the Mac is that it is easy to have multiple desktops with multiple windows on each with multiple tabs in use on each window. Nice to be able to spread them out a bit on extra monitors to see more without tapping or swiping sideways with two fingers on the mouse to select windows etc.
 

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