I'm looking to connect two Thunderbolt displays to a single MacBook Pro. I've seen another thread here which mentioned hubs and display ports, but it seems this can be accomplished natively with the ports.


However, when I plug the second display into the first, the second one does not power on. I think the issue might be because the Thunderbolt displays are slightly different. One is a newer Thunderbolt which has the little "thunderbolt" icon on the video cord. The other is a little bit older and has a "video" icon on the video cord. The "video" Thunderbolt doesn't have a Thunderbolt port on the back, while the "thunderbolt" monitor does. Both screens will work independently, but when I plug the "thunderbolt" display into my MacBook and try to get the other to display by plugging the "video" cord into the thunderbolt port of the first monitor which on, nothing happens. Does it sound like an adapter issue, or something I need to adjust via preferences or a software update?

  • 1
    What year and model of MBP do you have? Not all support dual TB displays. Jan 25, 2015 at 3:54
  • Bought it in mid 2013 but it's a mid 2012 model. Could that kind of issue be resolved a software upgrade, or would it require getting into the hardware?
    – JWK
    Jan 25, 2015 at 6:38
  • Odd. The mid-2012 MBP definitely supports dual Thunderbolt displays. This really is a case of it should just work out of the box. There's no configuration necessary. Jan 26, 2015 at 9:04
  • 1
    Are you 100% certain both displays are Thunderbolt displays? Your comment about the "video" display not having a Thunderbolt port on the back suggests to be that perhaps it's an older Apple Cinema Display (as of mid-2015 Apple has only released one model of Thunderbolt display). How many Thunderbolt ports does your MacBook Pro have?
    – mjturner
    Aug 25, 2015 at 7:58

2 Answers 2


That symbol you see is the Mini DisplayPort icon (https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT204149).

Apple has stated that Mini DisplayPort adapters won't work in a Thunderbolt chain.


Its not possible to connect two displays through a thunderbolt connection however I believe you can connect a display through the thunderbolt connection and also a third monitor through a USB connection.

If your not to fussed about the quality of the required two extra monitors, this

Checkout Slide N' Joy

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