Connecting Multiple External Displays to your Mac

Connecting multiple displays to your Mac

External monitor specifications

Ever needed a second or third display for your Mac?

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Flicking between browser tabs and apps, or trying to cram a whole spreadsheet on a 13-inch display can be tiresome, so why not connect a second display to your Mac? It can be easier than you think! Macs have the ability to connect one or more external displays, below is the ultimate guide on the number of displays and the maximum resolutions possible.

Each Mac has slightly different specifications for running an external display so we have split the information up by model to help.

What plugs where?

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The ports that output to external displays differ between models. Since 2015 there has been three main ports to be concerned about.

Thunderbolt 1 and 2

Thunderbolt 3

HDMI / HDMI 2.0

If your display does not have this port you may need an adapter.

MacBook Pro from 2017 onwards will use the Thunderbolt 3 port to connect an external display.

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Setup 1 Setup 2

One display up to 5120 by 2880

Up to two displays with 4096 by 2304

MacBook Pro 13-inch (M1, 2020) šŸ–„

One display up to 6016 by 3384

N/A

Up to two displays with up to 5120 by 2880

Up to four displays with 4096 by 2304

Up to two displays with up to 6016 by 3384

Up to four displays with up to 4096 by 2304

Supports up to four displays with up to 4096 by 2304.

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Supports up to four displays with up to 4096 by 2304.

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Supports up to two displays with up to 4096 by 2304.

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MacBook Air from 2015 - 2017 will use the Thunderbolt 2 port to connect an external display, whereas the 2018 onwards models will use Thunderbolt 3.

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Setup 1 Setup 2

One display up to 3840 by 2160

N/A

One display up to 5120 by 2880

Up to two external displays with 4096 by 2304

One display up to 6016 by 3384

Up to two external 4K displays with 4096 by 2304

MacBook Air (M1, 2020) šŸ–„

One display up to 6016 by 3384

N/A

Supports up to two displays with up to 4096 by 2304.

šŸ–„ šŸ–„

Supports up to four displays with up to 4096 by 2304.

šŸ–„ šŸ–„

Supports one display up to 3840 by 2160.

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Mac mini from Late 2012 will use Thunderbolt 1 and HDMI to connect external displays, Mac mini from Late 2014 will use Thunderbolt 2 and HDMI and 2018 - 2020 models will use Thunderbolt 3 and HMDI 2.0.

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Setup 1 Setup 2

One display up to 1920 by 1200 via HDMI and one display up to 2560 by 1600 via Thunderbolt

Two display up to 2560 by 1600 via Thunderbolt

Two displays up to 2560 by 1600 via Thunderbolt 2

One display with up to 4096 by 2160 (at 24Hz) via HDMI

Two displays with 4096 by 2304 resolution via Thunderbolt 3 plus one display with 4096 by 2160 connected via HDMI 2.0

One display with 5120 by 2880 via Thunderbolt 3 plus one display with 4096 by 2160 via HDMI 2.0

Mac mini (M1, 2020) šŸ–„ šŸ–„

One display up to 4096 by 2160 via HDMI 2.0 plus one display up to 6016 by 3384 via Thunderbolt 3

N/A

Supports up to three displays (see above)

šŸ–„ šŸ–„ šŸ–„

Supports up to three displays (see above)

šŸ–„ šŸ–„ šŸ–„

Supports up to two displays with up to 2560 by 1600.

šŸ–„ šŸ–„

iMacs from 2015 will use the Thunderbolt 2 ports to connect an external display, models from 2017 onwards will use Thunderbolt 3 ports.

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Setup 1 Setup 2

One display up to 3840 by 2160 via Thunderbolt 2 (Intel HD 6000 model)

One display up to 4096 by 2304 Via Thunderbolt 2 (Intel Iris Pro 6200 model)

N/A

Two displays up to 4096 by 2304 via Thunderbolt 3

One display up to 5120 by 2880 via Thunderbolt 3

iMac 24-inch (M1, 2021) šŸ–„

One display up to 6016 by 3384 via Thunderbolt 3

N/A

Supports up to two displays with up to 4096 by 2304.

šŸ–„ šŸ–„

Supports up to two displays with up to 4096 by 2304.

šŸ–„ šŸ–„

Supports one display (see above)

šŸ–„

iMacs from 2015 will use the Thunderbolt 2 ports to connect an external display, models from 2017 onwards will use Thunderbolt 3 ports.

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Setup 1 Setup 2

Two displays with up to 4096 by 2160 via Thunderbolt 2

One display with up to 5120 by 2880 via Thunderbolt 2

Two displays up to 4096 by 2304 via Thunderbolt 3

One display up to 5120 by 2880 via Thunderbolt 3

One display up to 6016 by 3384 (AMD Radeon Pro 5300 and 5500 XT)

Two displays up to 6016 by 3384 (AMD Radeon Pro 5700 and 5700 XT)

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Two displays up to 5120 by 2880

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Supports up to two displays with up to 4096 by 2304.

šŸ–„ šŸ–„

Supports up to two displays with up to 4096 by 2304.

šŸ–„ šŸ–„

Supports up to two displays (see above)

šŸ–„ šŸ–„

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