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How to connect Multi displays to a MacBook Air in 2024

Using Multiple Monitors On Your Laptop Can Greatly Expand Your Workspace And Make Working And Playing More Comfortable. However, With Most Of The Latest Mac book Air Laptops, Connecting Multiple External Displays Can Be Difficult And Can Cause A Lot Of Problems .

Fortunately, There Are Several Ways To Get The Multi-Monitor Setup You Want. If You Have An M3 Macbook Air , The Whole Process Is Very Easy. With The M1 And M2 Models, Things Get A Little More Complicated. A Docking Station And Software Workaround Is Required. But It’s Still Quite Doable.

What Are Docking Stations? These Are Hubs That Connect To Your Computer, Providing A Large Number Of Additional Ports And Connections. Be Sure To Look For One With Multiple Display Connectors (Usb-C, Hdmi, Displayport, Etc.) And Make Sure You Have The Appropriate Cables To Connect It To Your Mac And Monitor. You Can Also Check The Supported Resolutions And Refresh Rates And How Fast Their Transfer Speeds Are (For Example, Thunderbolt 4 Offers 40 Gbps, While Usb4 May Only Reach 20 Gbps). There Is).

You Should Also Note That If You Use A Software Workaround, Macos Updates May Break Functionality, So You’ll Need To Check For App Updates To Get It Working Again.

Now You Can Start Connecting Some Displays To Your Macbook Air. Let’s See How It’s Done.



Connect A Display To Your M3 Macbook Air

In March 2024, Apple Announced That The M3 Macbook Air Will Now Be Able To Connect To Two External Displays Instead Of The Usual One, As Long As The Monitor Is Closed. This Makes Connecting Multiple Displays Much Easier Than With The M1 Or M2 Models, And Doesn’t Require Any Software Workarounds To Get It Working.

Closing Your Laptop’s Lid Is An Important Part Of The Equation. If You Open The Lid When Two Displays Are Connected, One Display Will Be Disconnected. You’ll Also Need To Connect An External Mouse Or Trackpad And Keyboard, Since They’re Not Accessible When The Macbook Air Lid Is Closed. Please note that your MacBook Air must be running macOS Sonoma 14.3 or a newer version for this method to be effective.

Step 1: First, Connect Your Keyboard And External Mouse Or Trackpad And Make Sure They Are Working Properly. If You Want To Connect Via Bluetooth, Open The System Settings App And Select Bluetooth In The Sidebar . Press The Pairing Button On Your Mouse Or Keyboard (If Needed) And It Will Appear In Your Mac’s List Of Bluetooth Devices. Select Connect And Wait Until Paired.

Step 2: We Recommend Connecting Your Macbook To A Power Source. If Your External Monitor Is Powering Your Laptop (You Can Check This In Your Display’s Manual), You Don’t Need To Connect Your Macbook To A Power Adapter.

Step 3: Connect Your First Display To Your Macbook. It Operates Up To 6k Resolution And 60hz Refresh Rate (Or 4k At 144hz).

Step 4: Next, Close The Lid Of Your Macbook Air.

Step 5: Now You Can Connect Your Second Display. It Operates Up To 5k Resolution And 60hz Refresh Rate (Or 4k At 100hz). Both Displays Should Now Work On Your Macbook Air.


How To Connect Multi Displays To Your M1 Or M2 Macbook Air Using Instant view

Officially, Neither The M1 Nor The M2 Macbook Air Supports Multiple Displays, With The Company’s Documentation Stating That They Are Limited To A Single Display Running At Up To 6k Resolution And A 60hz Refresh Rate. Masu. Apple Also Warns That “The Dock Does Not Increase The Number Of Displays You Can Connect.”

At Least That’s The Official Stance. However, Unofficially, You Can Run Multiple Monitors On M1 And M2 Macbook Air Laptops. This Requires Some Workarounds, But Is Doable.

First, You’ll Need A Third-Party Docking Station. These Devices Make Additional Ports Available To Your Mac And May Include A Display Connector. Be Sure To Check The Dock Manufacturer’s Website To See If Their Product Supports Running An External Display On His Macbook Air. Supported By Many Products, But Not By Some.

Next, You Need A Software Solution That Can Compress Your Mac’s Video Output And Send It To An External Monitor. Here I’ll Show You How To Do That Using An App Called Instantview.

Step 1: Download And Install The Instantview App From The Developer’s Siliconmotion Download Page . Some Docking Stations May Also Come Bundled With This Software. During The Installation Process, You Will Be Asked To Give Permission To Record Your Display. Please Do Not Worry. The App Doesn’t Actually Record Or Save Anything. All You Need To Do Is Capture What’s On Your Display, Compress It, And Send It To An External Display.

Step 2: Return To Installation. At The Prompt, Select The Button To Open System Settings. Alternatively, Open System Settings Separately And Go To Privacy & Security > Screen And Audio System Recording . In Either Case, You’ll Need To Enable The Toggle Next To Macos Instantview . Once That’s Done, Select Exit And Reopen In The Pop-Up Window That Appears . Instantview Will Restart.

Step 3: Connect The Docking Station To Your Mac And Connect An External Monitor To The Station.

Step 4: The Content On Your Mac’s Screen Should Now Appear On All Connected Monitors.

Step 5: Open The Instant view Application To View Its User Interface. Either Mirrored Display Or Extended Display Will Be Displayed . Select This To Change The Mode To Mirror Or Extend Your Macbook Air’s Screen Content To An External Display. You Can Also Access These Controls From Your Mac’s Menu Bar.


How To Connect Multi Displays To Your M1 Or M2 Macbook Air Using Display link

If Instantview Doesn’t Work On Your Mac Or You’d Prefer To Use A Different App, You Can Try Displaylink Instead. This Is A Very Similar App That Works Similarly To Instantview, Allowing You To Compress Your Video Feed And Connect To Multiple External Monitors.

Step 1: Install Displaylink Manager From The Developer’s Website . Some Docking Stations May Also Come Bundled With This Software. Like Instantview, You Must Allow Screen Recording. Open The System Settings App And Go To Privacy & Security > Screen And Audio System Recording . Enable The Toggle Next To Displaylink Manager .

Step 2: Once Displaylink Manager Is Installed, Open The App. The Menu Bar Icon Will Open Automatically.

Step 3: Check The Box Next To Automatically Launch After Login .

Step 4: Next, Connect Your External Display To The Docking Station. At This Point, You May Need To Select Allow At The System Prompt.

Step 5: Your Monitor Should Now Be Properly Connected.


If You Have An M3 Macbook Air, Connecting Two External Displays Is Very Easy. If You Have An M1 Or M2 Model, The Workaround Above Should Help You Avoid The Limitation Of Running Multiple Monitors.

However, It’s Important To Note That Some Copyrighted Content ( Such As Content Shown On Netflix Or Disney+) May Not Work On Displays Connected Using Instantview Or Displaylink . Is. Because These Apps Use Screen Recording, The Copyright Protection Features Used By Streaming Services Will Assume That The Content Is Pirated And Will Not Display It Properly On Your Monitor. If Instantview Or Displaylink Is Detected By The Copyright Protection Feature, It Will Prevent Playback On All Monitors , Not Just Those Connected Using This Software .

To Restore Content Playback, Try Disconnecting Any Monitors Using Instantview Or Displaylink. Alternatively, Try Viewing The Content Using A Web Browser Such As Firefox . This Type Of Content Blocking Works In Safari And Chrome, But May Not Work In Other Browsers. In Safari And Chrome, Disabling Hardware Acceleration May Help. In Chrome, Go To Settings > System And Disable The Graphics Acceleration Option.

Or, Try Removing The Docking Station And Watching Content On Your Macbook Air’s Built-In Display Or On A Monitor Connected Directly To Your Laptop.

After You Connect Your Display, You Can Position It In Macos. This Allows The Mouse To Move Correctly On The Display. For Example, If You Have One Monitor Placed On Top Of Another Monitor, Moving The Mouse Up From The Bottom Screen Should Cause That Monitor To Appear On The Top Monitor. To Adjust Your Display, Open The System Settings App And Go To The Display Section. Select The Place Button And Drag The Monitor To The Correct Position. If You’re Not Sure Which Monitor Is Which In The System Settings App, Go To The Display Section And Hold Down The Option Key.Select The Identify Button (When You Release The Option Key, This Button Will Display “Night Shift” ).

If You Have Two Displays Connected To Your M3 Macbook Air, Be Aware That Opening The Lid Will Cause The Second Display To Disappear Or Be Disconnected. When You Remove The First Display And Open The Lid Of Your Macbook Air, The Second Monitor Becomes The Primary Display For Macos.More Details on official Website Apple


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