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Macbook Pro Question

Tw4winTw4win Registered User regular
edited July 2008 in Help / Advice Forum
A couple of months ago I purchased a new Macbook Pro and now I'm starting to make the switch from PC to Mac for everything other than gaming (email, web surfing, financial stuff, etc...). Things are going great but I have one question...

I have a spare 21 inch LCD monitor, keyboard, and mouse at home. Is there a way to easily use these with the macbook? Ideally, when I'm home I'd like to have the macbook on my desk, closed, and using the monitor, mouse, and keyboard for input. In effect, I'd like to just turn it into a CPU while at home.

Is this possible?

Will it damage the macbook or it's built in screen in anyway?

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Tw4win on

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    digital.aarondigital.aaron Registered User regular
    edited July 2008
    Not sure about the MacBook Pro, but my MacBook has a mini-DVI out that i can use to connect the laptop to a monitor (or my HDTV, yay!). I'm pretty certain your MacBook Pro has the same thing. Check the manual, it'll tell you all about it.

    Edit: If it's mini-DVI, you'll need the adapted from Apple to convert it to something you can use with your monitor.

    digital.aaron on
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    KrisKris Registered User regular
    edited July 2008
    I'm pretty sure the Macbooks vent heat from the keyboard, and as such it's recommended not to operate while the thing is closed (head directly onto the screen). Not sure if this is the same with the Macbook Pro's though.

    Kris on
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    Tw4winTw4win Registered User regular
    edited July 2008
    Kris wrote: »
    I'm pretty sure the Macbooks vent heat from the keyboard, and as such it's recommended not to operate while the thing is closed (head directly onto the screen). Not sure if this is the same with the Macbook Pro's though.

    According to Apple it's OK to operate the machine in "clamshell" mode.

    I am still interested in some anecdotal evidence. Does anyone on the forums do this?

    Tw4win on
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    saltinesssaltiness Registered User regular
    edited July 2008
    I use my MacBook (non-pro) closed as a CPU. I use InsomiaX to prevent it from going into sleep mode when I shut it. I haven't had any problems with overheating but I do prop it up on its edge so it has maximum surface space exposed to air.

    saltiness on
    XBL: heavenkils
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    WeretacoWeretaco Cubicle Gangster Registered User regular
    edited July 2008
    Weretaco on
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    supabeastsupabeast Registered User regular
    edited July 2008
    I’ve been doing this with Macs for years without any problems.

    supabeast on
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    DeathPrawnDeathPrawn Registered User regular
    edited July 2008
    If you're on a MacBook Pro you're 100% fine running it closed.

    If you're on a white/black MacBook, you have to download InsomniaX and you run the risk of overheating (how much of a risk is debatable).

    Either can use an external keyboard and mouse, just keep in mind that neither laptop has a PS/2 port.

    DeathPrawn on
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    saltinesssaltiness Registered User regular
    edited July 2008
    Also, if you have a USB hub things will be a lot easier for you. My 20" Dell monitor has a hub built in so I just have my keyboard and mouse hooked into that and swap out the hub cord between my PC tower and my MacBook. I also use the new Mac keyboard with my PC because I like the low profile key design, the only downside is there is no print screen button.

    saltiness on
    XBL: heavenkils
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    Tw4winTw4win Registered User regular
    edited July 2008
    It seems to be working perfectly for now, however I did have to download InsomiaX in order to keep the display from sleeping when I closed the laptop. I do have a Macbook Pro but it still sleeps when I close the lid without InsomiaX. Is there some setting I'm missing here?

    Also, the display isn't crystal clear on my LCD monitor. Any settings I can adjust to fix that?

    Tw4win on
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    Project MayhemProject Mayhem Registered User regular
    edited July 2008
    Your macbook pro will normally go to sleep when you close it, but since you're using an external keyboard and mouse just press the spacebar a few times or click the mouse and it should wake back up.

    As far as the display, click the apple logo in the top left, go to system preferences, and go to display. Make sure the resolution is set to the native resolution for the display, which is usually the one at the bottom of the list.

    Project Mayhem on
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    Tw4winTw4win Registered User regular
    edited July 2008
    Your macbook pro will normally go to sleep when you close it, but since you're using an external keyboard and mouse just press the spacebar a few times or click the mouse and it should wake back up.

    As far as the display, click the apple logo in the top left, go to system preferences, and go to display. Make sure the resolution is set to the native resolution for the display, which is usually the one at the bottom of the list.


    I did that. I think that when I have "mirror mode" checked it forces the resolution of the Macbook pro display to my monitor. When I don't have mirror checked the image is just as clear as it can be.

    Tw4win on
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    RyakStormRyakStorm Registered User regular
    edited July 2008
    My Macbook Pro is used pretty much all the time at work closed in clamshell mode, it's hooked up to a 30" Cinema display. I work this thing hard, HD video editting in Final Cut Studio 2, and heavy Creative Suite work (mainly Photoshop and InDesign).

    No problems here.

    RyakStorm on
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    LewishamLewisham Registered User regular
    edited July 2008
    I don't understand why you wouldn't just keep it open and enjoy having another screen?

    Lewisham on
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    Tw4winTw4win Registered User regular
    edited July 2008
    Lewisham wrote: »
    I don't understand why you wouldn't just keep it open and enjoy having another screen?

    Good question. I guess there's really no reason not to. It would probably help with heat issues as well.

    Keeping that in mind, I now have another question. Using "spaces" is there a way to assign a specific space to a specific screen? Assuming 4 spaces I could have space #1 as my main workspace (large monitor) and space #2 as my secondary workspace (small monitor) for things like IM and email.

    Tw4win on
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    DeathPrawnDeathPrawn Registered User regular
    edited July 2008
    Lewisham wrote: »
    I don't understand why you wouldn't just keep it open and enjoy having another screen?

    The only time I really want to close the screen is when I'm watching a movie via TV-Out, and then the last thing I want is another bright light source competing for my attention.

    DeathPrawn on
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    saltinesssaltiness Registered User regular
    edited July 2008
    Lewisham wrote: »
    I don't understand why you wouldn't just keep it open and enjoy having another screen?

    Desk space, and the screen quality is terrible compared to a good desktop monitor when you need color accuracy.

    saltiness on
    XBL: heavenkils
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