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Daisy chain two display port monitors (Dell U2913WM) to new Mac mini Thunderbolt?

28986 Views 30 Replies Latest reply: Feb 12, 2014 8:15 PM by Big.Lou RSS
  • ryip Calculating status...

    I have a mid 2010 MacBook Pro 15" i7 and two U2913WM. Extended the screen from MBP, but the issues is those two U2913WM are mirroring. I'm using the miniDP-DP cable that came with U2913WM. Cable connection is miniDP on MBP, DP-in on the 1st U2913WM. Then DP-out on 1st U2913WM to miniDP-in on 2nd U2913WM.


    Result are the same with or without both U2913WM DP1.2 were set to enable or disable.


    Below are some of the research that I did...


    In this articule, it said "These Apple computers supply multichannel audio (up to 8 channels) and video signals over Mini DisplayPort", so does it mean it is DP1.2 ?


    Spec. of MBP


    Dell's site said "support daisy chain functionality that allows extension or replication" 1/16/new-dell-ultrasharp-u2913wm-29-ultra-wide-monitor-seamlessly-blends-work-an d-play.aspx


    If any futher findings can be posted will be highly appreciated.

  • Lopezzi Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Not sure if this helps or not, but I have almost the same setup and I can't get it to work either.  I am trying to connect one Dell U2913WM from the mini DP port on the laptop to the DP port on the monitor, then from the DP OUT to a DP-to-DVI adapter to a 20" Cinema Display.  No luck for me.  The Dell monitor shows, but nothing is recognized through the DP out to the Cinema Display.  I've tried enabling the 1.2 mode on the Dell but either way, nothing shows on the Cinema Display.  Sad day.

  • neu242 Level 1 Level 1 (10 points)

    I dont know if the cables that comes with it are 1.2 capable so I ordered the "Accell B143B-003J UltraAV Mini DisplayPort to DisplayPort 1.2". Also be sure to configure the settings on the monitor when you press menu > other settings > enable 1.2.


    Ill post an update if it works with the accells.


    @kevinks: How did it go?

  • .Monger. Calculating status...

    I just got my new Haswell 2.6GHz Macbook Pro today and the first thing I did was try to daisy-chain my two U3014 displays with no success.  Even with Thunderbolt 2 on the Macbook Pro and with "DisplayPort 1.2" enabled on both Dell monitors both monitors are mirrors of each other, with the Macbook Pro seeing them as a single display.


    I find this odd because this Macbook Pro uses NVidia's GeForce GT 750M to connect via Thunderbolt and the 750M is DisplayPort 1.2 compatible.


    There must be one last piece of the puzzle missing... whether that's a required firmware update or an OS update.  As far as the hardware is concerned, these monitors should successfully daisy-chain.

  • Big.Lou Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    Monger, I just tried with the same results.


    I hooked up my brand new MBP (same graphics card) with TB2 ports to my crappy Dell U2713H montiors that are DP 1.2 compliant with no luck.   Same outcome...mirror images of the displays. 


    Help anyone?   Has anyone had success?

  • Resno Level 1 Level 1 (55 points)

    Add me to this as well. I have the latest rMBP 15 with Nvidia card, and 2 Dell U3014 chained via displayports. The two monitors are mirrored to each other.


    Right now, I just hooked up the second monitor to my rMBP directly via HDMI so I can get true 3 monitors.


    Has anyone tried daisy chaining the exact same monitors to a Windows machine? I don't have any PC  with displayport..

  • Resno Level 1 Level 1 (55 points)

    Someone on this thread says that daisy-channing Dell displayports will only give mirror images. It has to be Apple's thunderbolts:

  • pauljb1 Calculating status...

    Monger, BigLou and Resno, since the new MacBook Pro has 2 thunderbolt ports, have you tried connecting each monitor to its own thunderbolt port on the MacBook Pro (instead of daisy chaining them off one thunderbolt port) ?


    I would assume you would get a proper extended desktop (instead of mirroring) in this case...



  • .Monger. Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    pauljb1, yes of course the two displays behave as expected (extended desktop, no mirroring) when using both MBP TB2 ports but then there are no TB2 ports left to use for anything else.

  • Theosg Calculating status...

    But wouldn't most other thunderbolt devices have two TB ports enabling you to daisy chain thru them per typical practice (displays at end of each chain)?! Granted, it means ensuring you only get other TB devices that have min 2 ports... Or am I missing something?   ( and, yes, I totally agree that daisy chain on one of the ports would be ideal -Apple should have ensured compatibility with 1.2 daisy chaining sooner imho. Unless there's a tech block, seems they snoozed a bit re cutting edge.

  • AnotherAppleUser Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Ironically, it was determined in another thread that if you had Win8 running, you could daisy chain 2 displays and extend your desktop via just one of the TB2 ports.

  • athale Calculating status...

    I was planning on buying a Dell u2413 so I could daisy chain a 2nd monitor until I read this. I have the Haswell MBP with the 750m. It's very annoying that this functionality doesn't work, surely it must be an OSX issue.


    Any idea if this is something that Apple will be working on a fix for, or is it more likely that they won't because they don't make the u2413? Afterall, they don't stand to make a profit out of it?


    I would guess (I'd put money on this) that, for whatever reason, they won't do a thing about it - which means I can add it to the list of other things that make me wonder why I spent over £2000 on a machine that doesn't have the performance or functionality of a windows laptop that costs less. Are Apple being lazy, purposefully unsupportive of other manufacturers, or just dumb?


    It's hard to tell sometimes.

  • .Monger. Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I used to build my own Windows systems since the late 90’s.  About three years ago I saw the value in the mobility of a laptop so I bought a Dell Precision.  That thing was so heavy and had so many overheating issues and audio driver issues that I finally decided to try my luck with Apple and their new Thunderbolt 2 equipped Macbook Pro last October.


    What I’m starting to observe (and other Mac users have probably known this all along) is that Apple is not in the business of making its machines compatible with third-party hardware.  If the third-party wants to manufacture their hardware to Apple’s specs — fine.  Otherwise, Apple is not going to invest any effort into designing for compatibility because they already make hardware that is compatible with their machines.


    What is so frustrating to me is that Apple only has to implement a concrete specification for a hardware standard: DisplayPort 1.2 and they’re not even doing that.  And yes, as others have pointed out it is an OS issue because you can daisy chain two DisplayPort 1.2 Dell’s just fine if you’re running Windows on Mac hardware.


    But DisplayPort 1.2 support isn’t the only issue with Apple’s lackluster OS when it comes to these new Dell monitors.  Mavericks sees these monitors as televisions and as a result sends a YPbPr signal instead of RGB.  If you do a Google search for “osx dell monitor” you’ll see on the first page “Blurry text on Dell Monitor + Mac OS X” and “Force RGB mode in Mac OS X” among other results that all describe how to run a Ruby script that forces OS X to recognize these monitors as monitors.  I had to run the script for my two U3014’s.  And no, the scripts didn’t fix the daisy chain issue. 


    So like everyone else with a new MBP and non-Apple monitors, I’m stuck using both Thunderbolt ports as DisplayPorts if I want full resolution on both monitors.  And I’m stuck having to run a script every time there is a Mavericks OS update just so that the damned OS will send an RGB signal to my monitors.


    It makes me feel like an idiot for spending so much on what would otherwise be the perfect system — much to the schadenfreude of Windows and Linux fanboys.  Honestly, if Apple could just figure out this one little thing I’ll still take it over Windows 8 or Ubuntu + Unity any day.

  • .Monger. Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Finally, allow me to drive a nail through any shred of hope lest anyone be still holding out for Dell monitor support from Apple:


    The first line from that page sets the stage for all of the Dell-Apple monitor issues outlined thereafter: "We do not validate our monitors with any apple proprietary hardware or software."




    Guess the best place for these monitors now is eBay.  And goody -- I get  to wait like every other Mac owner for Apple to release a Thunderbolt Display that offers my current Dell's resolution or better (2560x1600).  Oh and I'll get to pay a premium for it too!  Thanks Apple!  I thought freedom of choice and compitition were good things for me as a consumer but that was really stupid of me -- obviously a complete lack of choice and sumbission to your exclusive product specs and timelines are the best thing for all of us!  More Cool-Aid please!


  • athale Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks for the info on RGB and YPbPr signals, .monger. No doubt I would have been sorely dissapointed at finding this out after buying one.


    I've worked with a 2010 MacPro for the last 2 years, connected to an Eizo Flexscan 24" (can't remember the exact model right now), and the image quality is fine. It's a work machine, maintained by an IT department at a publishing company, and it's still running 10.6.8. The display is connected using DVI from an ATI 5770. Why doesn't this have any problem outputting correctly? Or, more to the point, why does the 2013 MBPr have a problem with monitors from other manufacturers.


    I would guess that Apple have purposefully written it in to the OS that the GPU should output YPbPr singals in order to push people towards their own brand of displays. What I mean to say is that it is not a mistake by Apple, it is intentional. If Snow Leopard could put out an accurate signal back in 2009, surely Mavericks is capable in 2014.


    I would happily buy Apple displays, however, the problem is that Apple's displays are over priced, and under specked - I don't care how pretty they are. They can't do what the Dells can do.


    It would seem that no matter what Apple system you're using, if you have invested in an Apple product in 2014, and you want to use that system for professional work, you're going to be stuck behind your peers working on Windows systems. That's a shame because Apple used to make machines that were design to let you be creative, using cutting edge technology, on stable platforms. That just isn't true anymore.


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