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I have a 2015 Macbook Pro (Thunderbolt 2 port) for which I would like to use my iMac 2019 (USB-C Port) as an external monitor. What type of adapter and cable should I buy to make this work?

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  • This is not possible, although Apple employees may tell you otherwise. Here's a brief synopsis of my recent experience: 1. Apple Support says yes, a new (2019) iMac can be used as an external display 2. Local Apple Store concurs 3. Tech Support rep concurs 4. Further technical questioning leads support rep to dig deeper 5. Tech Support rep places me on hold, eventually returning to apologize for misinforming me. A new (2019) iMac cannot be used as an external display. Employee confusion on this point is somewhat understandable as it's fueled by their personal experience.... Jul 21, 2019 at 19:40
  • ....Apparently, Apple commonly uses older iMacs as external displays in their tech support areas. Seeing this, employees assume iMacs have this capability, obviously not realizing that it's been removed in newer models. Jul 21, 2019 at 19:40
  • see support.apple.com/guide/mac-help/… -- I've not had time to try it yet, but from the title it probably provides a more recent, working answer (?)
    – Kay V
    Apr 7 at 9:55

3 Answers 3

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Some newer iMac models cannot be used as external monitor for another Mac.

iMac (Retina 5K, 27-inch, Late 2014) and later iMac models can't be used as Target Display Mode displays.

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Nimesh Neema is correct, you cannot use your iMac in Target Display Mode as this feature has not been supported in iMacs manufactured for about the past five years.

However, there are some software options you can investigate, but I have no personal experience with them. Two of these options are listed below:

In summary, they promise to allow users to share their Mac screens on a variety of devices, including other Macs.

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Apple has dropped Target Display Mode support to the 5K iMacs since the bandwidth restrictions when it debuts. There are news mentioning the Intel chip or whatsoever giving further restrictions to the later iMacs and Apple has officially removed TDM support since 10.13.

You may use a pricey workaround like game capturing device to display (and capture) HDMI signal as an app on iMac. It is initially for YouTubers’ use.

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