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Does the MacBook Pro (Retina, Mid 2012) output 2560x1600 to the HDMI port?

The reason I ask is that I would like to drive 2x30 inch 2560x1600 monitors while still using the Gigabit Ethernet adapter. (My backup plan is to get the USB 2 to 100 Mbit adapter and use that and then just use the Thunderbolt for graphics). So I would appreciate any additional caveats to this plan as well.

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If the HDMI port can't do that, you could consider daisy-chaining multiple 27" ThunderBolt displays. Also, if you use even one 27" ThunderBolt display, that has the FireWire and GigE ports built-in to its internal hub. Or you could use one of the upcoming third-party ThunderBolt "port dock" devices that have been announced (such as from Belkin). –  fluffy Jun 25 '12 at 18:10
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6 Answers

While the HDMI spec supports that resolution, but the 15" MacBook Retina Pro HDMI port does not. (Unfortunately I don't have a reference for this information, but it's based on first-hand experience).

I have just switched from a 24" Dell 2407WFP (4:3) to a 27" Dell U2713HM (16:9), and the 24" monitor works over HDMI at it's native mode of 1600x1200. (Interestingly, this is better vertical resolution than the 1080p mentioned by others.

The 27" Monitor has a native resolution of 2560x1440, but via HDMI, I can only get 1920x1080 resolution displayed. Using a DisplayPort cable should give native resolution, but I've yet to test that.

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Have you tried booting Windows on it, and using HDMI that way? I read somewhere online that someone claimed Windows can output 2560x1440 even if OS X can't. –  jtbandes Oct 24 '12 at 8:43
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Yes, I've tried. No difference AFIACT, but maybe there's an updated driver hanging around... Can you post a link to "somewhere online" if you find it again? –  Roddy Oct 26 '12 at 9:25
    
Yes, here it is. I actually posted this same question on the support forums here a couple weeks ago. –  jtbandes Oct 26 '12 at 19:40
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I can confirm that the HDMI port on the Mid-2012 Retina MacBook Pro (1GB NVIDIA GeForce GT 650M) works out of the box at 2560x1440 resolution on Windows 8.1, but not on OS X Mavericks. –  thomasfuchs Jan 5 at 15:53
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If it's HDMI 1.4 as noted above, it should support "4k" resolution (4096×2160p24)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HDMI#Version_1.4

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Although it would be Nice to know If it does support these resolutions… –  Paul Wagland Jun 28 '12 at 19:29
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The hardware on the mid-2012 Retina MacBook Pro technically supports up to 4K resolution over HDMI.

However, OS X seems to limit the resolution to 1080p60 (1920x1080 at 60 hertz).

The NVIDIA drivers on Windows support higher resolutions, for example I have no problem using an Asus 27" 2560x1440 at 60 hertz over HDMI on the rMBP (Windows 8.1 in Bootcamp). The same display will only go up to 1080p when run on OS X Mavericks (10.9).

It might be possible to enable higher resoutions on OS X via HDMI using SwitchResX (I haven't tried).

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Given that the new (late-2013) Mac Pro supports 4k over HDMI, this is wrong.

I believe HDMI is limited to full HD resolution, i.e., 1080p (1920x1080), so nothing can drive a larger screen through that.

Even if HDMI isn't restricted to 1080p, 2560x1600 requires dual-link DVI and I'm quite certain that HDMI doesn't have those pins, restricting it to the resolutions single-link DVI is capable of (2,098 × 1,311).

Your best bet is to use the 10/100 Fast Ethernet adapter over USB.

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"HDMI 1.3 increased that to 340 MHz, which allows for higher resolution (such as WQXGA, 2560×1600) across a single digital link." (From Wikipedia). I read on a forum that the HDMI port on this model is 1.4 –  Kyle Brandt Jun 25 '12 at 17:46
    
I've never heard of HDMI supporting larger resolutions like that, but Wikipedia tends to be right about this sort of thing. I've never seen an HDMI to dual-link DVI adapter, not have I seen a screen advertised to accept higher resolutions from HDMI. –  CajunLuke Jun 25 '12 at 18:19
    
Nope, HDMI supports higher resolutions than 1080p, if your graphics drivers and the display does. –  thomasfuchs Jan 5 at 15:54
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DisplayPort can display without problem at 2560x1440. Under Windows 7, you can set a personalized resolution for HDMI to use 2560x1440. Under Windows 8, this personalized resolution didn't work :( Perhaps W8 is too young and we must wait a bit. Under Mac, I don't know. -> HDMI is in standard limited to FullHD, but with some tweak, you can go higher.

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Where is all this "HDMI is limited to full HD" falseness coming from? For years HDMI has supported resolutions well beyond any what TV set could display... or at least any TV set mere mortals can afford.

If you don't trust Wikipedia, then go to the source and look at the HDMI 1.4 specs for yourself. http://www.hdmi.org/download/press_kit/PressBriefing_HDMI1_4_FINAL_8_0_061809.pdf

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It's not an issue of "what does HDMI support?", it's an issue of "what does this particular MacBook's HDMI port support?" –  gabedwrds Nov 4 '13 at 20:49
    
@gabedwrds The hardware supports it (it works fine on Windows 8.1), but OS X's graphics drivers don't. –  thomasfuchs Jan 5 at 15:55
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