Thread: Macbook Pro (retina) as an External Display for New Mac Pro?

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  1. #1 Macbook Pro (retina) as an External Display for New Mac Pro? 
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    I haven't had the pleasure of upgrading to Mavericks yet due to so many moving targets and support updates for software so perhaps this question is out of date but:

    Can you use the rMBP as an external display yet?

    As the nMP's begin shipping I'm tooling together a flypack that would house the "Tower" and the screen on top with a folding lid. Suddenly the idea for a rMBP screen popped to mind where I could just avoid having to fabricate a protective cover for any other display and just deal with a folding 15" laptop that's higher resolution anyway. If the keyboard and trackpad can be implemented this seems like a killer mobile package with a small footprint but decent horsepower.

    Thoughts?
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  2. #2  
    Senior Member Bob Gundu's Avatar
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    Isn't this just simple screen sharing?
    http://computers.tutsplus.com/tutori...mac--mac-30736
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  3. #3  
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    I thought about Screen Share but was hoping for something more direct like the Target Display Mode option with iMac's. I could try Screen Share over Thunderbolt IP and see if it functions decently. I feel any IP or Wifi display options will perform pretty poorly though like Airdisplay or Screenrecycler.
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  4. #4  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jason Osterday View Post
    I thought about Screen Share but was hoping for something more direct like the Target Display Mode option with iMac's. I could try Screen Share over Thunderbolt IP and see if it functions decently. I feel any IP or Wifi display options will perform pretty poorly though like Airdisplay or Screenrecycler.
    afaik Target Display mode which works great with imac does not work with any of the portables....yet?
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  5. #5  
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    Screen Sharing from a MacBook Pro retina and another Mac does work... sort of.

    My old 17" MacBook Pro connects via ethernet to my Hackintosh tower, both set to 1920x1200, and it works seamlessly. It feels like I'm only using the laptop, not connecting to another computer.

    However, my brand new and better 2013 MacBook Pro retina is having trouble. I can't seem to find a sweet spot resolution-wise due to the HiDPI settings/methodology of the retina display. I've been playing with SwitchResX, which has helped, but usually the Screen Sharing is sized wrong, or there is video or cursor lag. It's annoying, and frankly, not good enough. I thought I was going to sell my 17", now I may keep it just as a monitor and keyboard/trackpad for my tower or future Mac Pro.

    A deeper issue is trying to connect via Screen Sharing using only the laptop display... i.e. no display connected to the tower (or new Mac Pro). It doesn't really work. The tower needs (wants) a monitor to connect to. You can trick it with a fake dongle, according to instructions here:

    http://blog.macminicolo.net/post/338...dless-mac-mini

    I just bought the dongle and transister, hopefully I can find a workable solution and write back.
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  6. #6  
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    I've wondered the same thing and as an owner of the rMBP and with a new mac pro on order... I was thinking that for a DIT set up or freelance colorist this could be a really sweet option for a couple reasons:


    1. You use both simultaneously. For example, Data Mgmt could be set up and initiated on the rMBP. Then switch over to target mode for everything else. Simply check back in on the rMBP every 15 minutes or so to switch mags, verify checksums, etc...


    2. No need for the extra space another screen will take up. True, they can be really lightweight, but no matter what, require space. Essentially, an entire DIT kit could fit in one Pelican case: nMP, rMBP, 17" OLED, 2x BMD DA, 2x HDLink Pro, cables, etc...


    3. The rMBP will act as a back up station should the nMP fail; and the nMP would be the back up if the rMBP failed, just using the color reference monitor as a GUI (worst case scenario).
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  7. #7  
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    Johnny, thanks for the info. I'm gonna try using Thunderbolt networking with a pair of rMBP here shortly once I get them updated to 10.9 and if not I'll just network them with ethernet and use a dongle method.

    Justin - My thoughts exactly. I have this spec'd out right now to be a cart and a couple cases. My big 24" and bigger monitors for GUI are what kill this setup so I could do away with all that. Plus I have a built in keyboard and mouse right here on the rMBP. I'll let you know what I find with Thunderbolt Screen Sharing.

    edit: I could have sworn I saw someone use the same commands for Target Display Mode followed by CMD F1 or something like that to make a MBP work. I tried digging up the forum that had it but no luck.
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  8. #8  
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    Has anyone had any luck with this?
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    Senior Member Burke Doeren's Avatar
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    I'd love to know if this idea works for connecting a MBP to a nMP through Thunderbolt as well.

    Totally agree with Justin - it could be a killer setup on the go.
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  10. #10  
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    this Luma Forge demo is running 2 mac pros on one mbp screen (and output to projector from there)
    http://www.fcp.co/hardware-and-softw...-and-new-speed
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