7 Replies Latest reply: Aug 7, 2012 8:48 PM by hardc0r3
drchrisdavis Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

I recently bought four MacBook Airs (all the new 2012 release) and I can not get any of them to work with an LCD projector. I have tried generic and authetic mini display adapters and have tried a few different projectors.  All I am able to see when I connect them in a black screen with lines running down. 


Interestingly enough, if I connect the MBA to an LCD monitor, it works just fine.  Then, once I have connected it to an LCD monitor, I can then connect it to a projector.  Also, if I shut down the MBA, plug in the dongle, and restart the computer, I can use the projector immediately. 


Additionally, I can not get the projector to work at all when using BootCamp with Windows 7 Professional.  It doesn't even see the projector at all not matter what I do.


Does anyone have any suggestions?  This is extremely frustrating and Apple is being NO HELP whatsoever. 

MacBook Air, Mac OS X (10.7.4)
  • samberl Level 4 Level 4 (1,990 points)

    I don't have a solution for you, but have you thought of using a USB-to-VGA adapter, while waiting for Apple to come up with a fix.


    Here is one from Newertech.



  • drchrisdavis Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I have heard that these do not work very well or produce a not so nice picture.  Do you have any experience using them?

  • samberl Level 4 Level 4 (1,990 points)

    I don't have any personal experience with USB-to-Video adpaters. I've not had a need for one.


    Perhaps, other members on the forum may have.


    Newertech is a reputable Mac supplier. I would be surprised if their adapter didn't work as advertised.

  • drchrisdavis Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    Thanks! I will keep this in mind and will probably purchase one today.  In the meantime, I hope a community member may have a solution using the mini display adapters.

  • hardc0r3 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    This seems to be a common problem with the MiniDP to VGA adapters. The problem is especially common on the official Apple adapters.


    Some VGA cables do not have all the pins connected, so depending on the driver version and the adapter, the external display might not get detected. In Windows Boot Camp on the older MBAirs, there were certain versions of the Intel display driver that were good and always detected external VGA monitors.


    One solution was to buy certain 3rd party active miniDP to VGA adapters that seem to work under more scenarios.

  • ChrisBZA Level 1 Level 1 (5 points)

    Guys, I've found a workaround that works for both VGA and HDMI issues, to enable you to use the MBA at clients/concerts/universities/other offices etc. It's not elegant, but it works:


    - Turn off MBA completely

    - Plug into an HDMI or VGA (perhaps ANY) screen

    - Boot up and it'll be perfect; as others have already reported. Thus far these steps are OK for anyone who doesn't need to pre-load content. But for those of us that do...

    - Now, here's the trick, u can suspend/sleep the MBA now, THEN unplug the screen, move to your new venue, THEN plug in the ANOTHER screen/projector, and turn back on again and it'll work! Yes, even tho it's a different screen, it'll flash a bit and work things out exactly like we're used to with our older macs.

    - ie this enables you to set up an external display at work/home, pre-load all your presentation/content/web pages, close the MBA and go to client/lecture hall, then plug into a projector there without having lost your content.


    So, in short, provided the MBA is fooled into thinking it was powered up with a screen connected, it'll work thereafter. PROVIDED it is not given the chance to think otherwise ie don;t unplug screen whilst it is awake.


    This SO speaks to a perfectly solvable firmware/driver issue. Probably around power management.

  • hardc0r3 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)

    I've found a solution.


    I bought the Moshi MiniDP to VGA adapter. Works like a charm for me, even under bootcamp Windows 7.


    I had a certain TV connected via VGA where the Apple VGA adapter just would not work under Windows 7, but worked okay under Mac OS. Swapped the Apple VGA adapter with the Moshi VGA adapter and it worked with both Windows and Mac OS.


    I've given a few presentations on a few different projectors now (using Windows 7), and the Moshi adapter is working great.


    This is with my Macbook Air 2012 i7.