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This has always been a big want for me. I love using multi-monitor setups but only want a single laptop. Does the 2011 MBP Thunderbolt support chaining multiple monitors together? I know that you can add a monitor and say, a few hard drives, but can you connect it to 2 27" monitors and your flat screen TV (for example)? Thanks!

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DisplayLink make USB-graphics adapters supported by OS X. You can connect up to four adapters (and hence monitors) this way. A bit slower but plenty fast for office work. displaylink.com/support/mac_downloads.php –  Thorbjørn Ravn Andersen Feb 25 '11 at 9:32
    
@Thorbjørn Yeah, I've seen them before but always found the latency to be a bit of a pain. –  Kevin Sylvestre Feb 25 '11 at 15:49
    
Be warned that the DisplayLink drivers installed on a boot camp partition (Windows 7 for example) makes the image unusable via Parallels 7. Spent many many hours freaking out because I couldn't boot into Windows all because of the DisplayLink drivers. –  Adam Lewis Jan 20 '12 at 19:13
    
You can find decisive information about this question in the comments to the question here apple.stackexchange.com/questions/42835/… as the gentleman asking the question ACTUALLY HAS an MBP new with two extern new thuderbolt monitors. Hope it helps! –  Joe Blow Mar 14 '12 at 10:48
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6 Answers 6

up vote 16 down vote accepted

Apple maintains a knowledge base article listing which Mac models support either one or two external thunderbolt displays.

The technology does allow for multiple monitors to be daisy chained. In fact, the devices you daisy chain doesn't matter, nor does the order they are in. However, like with the Display Port and eSATA, the problem at the moment is finding actual devices that support this feature. Until Apple or another manufacturer provides monitors with the ports needed for daisy chaining, this will not be possible.

The advantage here is unlike eSATA and Display Port, the bandwidth available will make this more then manageable from the port itself. The biggest obstacle will be the ability to provide enough power to run all these daisy chained devices. Therefore just getting a cable will not be sufficient. Each device will be required to have its own incoming and outgoing port.

Give the technology another year or so it will be more then doable and more mainstream. Apple would most likely also add these ports to their monitors fairly soon, I suspect during the next iMac/Monitor refresh schedule.

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So does a 'splitter' exist? –  Kevin Sylvestre Feb 24 '11 at 19:57
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@Kevin I would say at this stage it's too early. Apple is the first company to my knowledge to introduce this technology to the mainstream. –  Diago Feb 24 '11 at 20:31
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The new Apple Display has two thunderbolt ports, so technically it should be possible to chain them… see apple.stackexchange.com/questions/9087/… –  Martín Marconcini Jul 21 '11 at 12:56
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The MacBook Pro allows two Thunderbolt displays to be hooked up:

More info here.

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Exactly +1. "Expand the capabilities of your MacBook Pro. Connect two Thunderbolt Displays to a 15- or 17-inch MacBook Pro or to an iMac and put an extra 7 million pixels to work. To make a desktop workstation out of your MacBook Pro, just daisy-chain additional Thunderbolt devices, including high-performance storage and video and audio capture devices, through the display." –  Martín Marconcini Jul 21 '11 at 12:59
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It should be noted that only MacBook Pros that have a discrete graphics card can drive two displays. The 13 inch and some of the 15 inch machines can only drive one display. –  andynormancx Jul 24 '11 at 15:58
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It is possible now with the new MBP's and the new Thunderbolt displays.

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Just saw the release today! Very exciting news! –  Kevin Sylvestre Jul 20 '11 at 18:00
    
It should be noted that only MacBook Pros that have a discrete graphics card can drive two displays. The 13 inch and some of the 15 inch machines can only drive one display. –  andynormancx Jul 24 '11 at 16:00
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"Any DisplayPort 1.1 device needs to be the last in a daisy chain." So you will need some newer monitor (which doesn't seem to exist yet) in the middle.

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Now that the Thunderbolt Display has been released, we can safely say Yes! It even has a picture of it being used this way on the Thunderbolt Display's features page on Apple.com =D

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Talked to Apple reseller today, and they seemed to confirm that at the moment no such displays are available. There is also the challenge of providing power, and also how to mix different units (and also what about older standards which can be connected to Thunderbolt?), so I guess a lot has to happen in the time to come. I'm optimistic, but don't believe that this will solve all our problems...

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Is it worth keeping this around now that the limited window of not having thunderbolt displays has passed? –  bmike Mar 2 '12 at 3:59
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