Can you Connect More than One Monitor to a Mac?


Many Mac users, particularly MacBook users, may require more screen real estate than their built-in displays give. However, how many external monitors are supported? Additionally, what display choices are available for those linked screens – such as screen mirroring and expanded display. Can M1 Macs use external monitors in the same way that Intel Macs do? In this article, There are several ways for to connect and use multiple monitors with your Mac. Learn about the different options and the benefits of each.


How Many Displays can you Connect?

  • Intel Macs with Thunderbolt 3 (USB-C) ports: Using the right cable, adapter, and/or hub, you can connect a display to each port on your Mac.
  • Silicon-based Apple Macs: A single external display can be connected to your Mac. (The Mac mini can support up to two screens, one of which can be connected via the HDMI connector.) Apple may include a patch for the issue with the single external display in future macOS versions. Until then, if you’re interested, you can do a search for unofficial methods of adding more monitors to an M1 Mac; these methods require the purchase of extra hardware and the installation of third-party software.
  • MiniDisplayPort, Thunderbolt, or Thunderbolt 2 equipped Macs: Two displays can be connected. You may either connect one Thunderbolt display to another and then to your Mac, or, if your Mac has two Thunderbolt ports, you can connect two monitors to your computer independently.

Display Options

Extended Desktop

With an extended desktop, you can use your displays in one of two ways:

  • Option 1: Create a single huge desktop that spans two or more monitors.
  • You can create multi-monitor windows.
  • Your pointer will travel seamlessly across the screens.
  • Option 2: You can configure the system so that each monitor displays a distinct desktop space.
  • Each monitor will have its own window open.
  • When you drag your mouse pointer off the edge of one screen, it will automatically go to the adjacent screen.
  • You can drag a window between monitors.
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To configure your displays for extended desktop mode, follow these steps:

  1. Navigate to the Apple menu > System Preferences > Displays.
  2. To access the Arrangement tab, click on it.
  3. Ensure that Mirror Displays is not selected.
  4. Drag the blue rectangle pictures around to rearrange the displays. To determine which blue rectangle corresponds to which monitor, click it; your display will flash a red border.

To choose between options 1 and 2, navigate to System Preferences and select Mission Control. Uncheck “Displays have distinct Spaces” for option 1. Check the box next to “Displays have distinct Spaces” for option 2.

Display Mirroring

To configure monitors to mirror your built-in display, follow these steps:

  1. Navigate to the Apple menu > System Preferences > Displays.
  2. With the Display tab selected, you should adjust the resolution of both monitors to the same.
  3. To access the Arrangement tab, click on it.
  4. Select the checkbox adjacent to Mirror Displays.

Mixed Mirroring and Extended Desktop

If you have three or more monitors, you can configure some to mirror your primary display and others to expand it.

  1. Click on Display in System Preferences, then on the Arrangement tab.
  2. Ensure that Mirror Displays is not selected.
  3. To mirror a display, hold down the Option key while dragging one of the blue display icons on top of another.

Tips and Troubleshooting

  • Connecting additional monitors and modifying the display settings may result in a crash of your Mac.
  • If a connected display begins to flicker or behave strangely, you can switch it back on by pressing the power button (or disconnecting the monitor) (reconnect it).
  • If your Mac fails to recognise a connected monitor, try the following:
    Select the Display tab in System Preferences > Displays. To begin, click the Detect Displays button. If the button is not visible, hit the Option key and it will appear in place of the Gather Windows button.
  • Sleep your Mac – Apple menu > Sleep — and then wake it up again.
  • Conduct a visual inspection of the cable connections and power buttons.
  • Ascertain that you are using the appropriate cable/hub. Not all cables or hub ports — for example, some USB-C cables and many USB-C hub ports – support video/media transfer. For more information, see How to Choose a USB, Multi-port Hub for Your MacBook.
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Kuldeep Sathwara
Kuldeep Sathwara
Kuldeep is an iOS lover loves to write about the iphones ,iPad, Mac Updates, issues , Fixes and More.

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