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Mr. Farmiga
Join Date: May 2004
Location: Tennessee
2022-03-24, 18:50

Her decade-old iMac gave it up last week, so now she's got her MacBook Air (which she'll be updating later this year when the redesigned one hits). So she's going to do the "one computer + external monitor when more space is needed" thing, which I've been pushing for all along...she doesn't need the overhead (updates, backing up, etc.) of full-blown Macs.


- I'm thinking something in the 22-24" range? Can't be too big due to her corner desk design and the amount of side-to-side space in the display cubby area. She's had a 21.5" iMac in there for ages, so it at least fits that sizing with a bit more to spare for something 23-24" . I think the space is right at 24" wide (I'll comfirm tomorrow). No need to be suggesting 27"+ stuff...isn't going to fit/fly/work.

- It's Mom. She surfs/Facebooks/Quicken/occasional greeting cards/emails/texts. Color fidelity, nits, resolution, etc. aren't crucial. Please don't buzzword/spec-whore me to death on this. It's the extra real estate/bigger working area she's after more than anything.

- According to her "About This Mac...", she's got a MacBook Air (13-inch, Early 2014) and, in case it matters, Intel HD Graphics 5000 with 1,536MB

- It "Just Works™", correct? Or are external displays platform-dependent...some work with Macs, some don't, etc.? I'm hoping it's just "connect the two devices together and *boom* extra monitor space without any hassle/aggravation (got enough of that going on with myself this past week - thanks, Catalina - not looking for extra ) when she wants to work with larger (physically) files (she sometimes does spreadsheet stuff).

- Would be wonderful to be under $150. Way under. Not looking for an Apple Studio Display, but I don't think a $69 Complete Piece-of-Shit is the goal either.

- Connection-wise, what do I need to look for on the monitor end? HDMI? DVI? VGA?

According to Mactracker, here's the deal on the graphics for her particular model:

-Iintel HD Graphics 500
- Up to 1.5GB LPDDR3 SDRAM shared from main memory
- Thunderbolt digital video output
- Dual display extended, video mirroring and AirPlay Mirroring
- Up to 2560 x 1600 pixels
Do I look for a Thunderbolt-to-HDMI cable (assuming there's a HDMI port on whatever monitor she gets)?

Thanks in advance.

Remember...basic and affordable/cheap. She's not doing photo/video work, gaming, etc. She surfs, does her Quicken stuff, makes some greeting cards, etc.