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IndustryArena Forum > CAM Software > Autodesk CAM > External monitor for 13" 2011 Macbook pro & Fusion 360
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2009

    External monitor for 13" 2011 Macbook pro & Fusion 360

    I want to get a 24" monitor to use with my Macbook for Fusion 360. I'm just an occasional user, but the display on the Macbook is just too small. Looking for an understanding of what specs are important, and maybe some inexpensive recommendations.

    Early 2011 13” Macbook Pro
    2.3 GHz Intel Cor i5
    8 GB 1333 MHz DDR3 memory
    Intel HD Graphics 3000 512 MB graphics
    Mini Display/Port


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2009

    Re: External monitor for 13" 2011 Macbook pro & Fusion 360

    You will need an adapter, depending on which display you get.

    Your Mac can drive a 1920x1080, 2560x1440, or 2560x1600 display. The higher resolutions tend to be found on larger displays, however - for example, I have an Acer 27" K272HUL hooked up to my iMac as my second display (it had been hooked up to a 13" 2013 MacBook Pro, until I got the iMac).

    If you get a 1920x1080 display, you will need either a Mini-DisplayPort to DVI adapter, or a Mini-DisplayPort to HDMI adapter, depending on if the display has a DVI input or a HDMI input. Occasionally, you may find a display in this resolution class that has a full-size DisplayPort connector on it; in which case (kinda obvious, but) you need a Mini-DisplayPort to DisplayPort cable.

    Larger resolutions will require either a Dual-Link DVI adapter; a higher end HDMI adapter (version 1.3 or better); or a Mini-DisplayPort to full size DisplayPort cable.

    Otherwise, it's pretty much plug-and-play.

    Specs to pay attention to for LCD panels in general that would matter to someone using Fusion360 would primarily be the brightness of the display (often specified in nits - more is better); and while not a spec per se, it's overall color rendering and appearance should be OK (not necessarily great - like a calibrated high-dynamic-range display that's intended for photo and movie editing would be... but OK) - and for that you will either have to trust the online reviews, or have a look at it in person at a retail store. IPS (In-Plane-Switching) displays in general have better image quality.

    Switching speed, for your application, isn't that important (gamers care about it, because they need super fast update rates to shoot the baddies, but for the most part you will be looking at things that aren't moving very fast). Any display that you pick should be able to support at least a 60hz refresh rate; but just about anything built recently does.

    Just as a matter of practicality, I would avoid a display that needed an external power brick - at least around here, they have a tendency to get lost. If the display has a standard IEC C13 power cable, then you can plug in any C13 cable and have it work.

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