Using an HDMI Splitter to Extend Displays on a Mac. Possible?

The more screen space you have, the more efficiently you work. If you now have a Mac machine, it’s better to connect a second display to it to boost your productivity. However, Apple has changed the ports on its Mac over the years, making it difficult to know what connectors you need to extend the display on your Mac. 

You may be wondering if an HDMI splitter works on your Mac. Well, you are not alone out there. We got asked a lot about whether it’s possible to use an HDMI Splitter to extend displays on a Mac. We will help you find out in the section below. 

Can I Use an HDMI Splitter to Extend Displays on Mac?

Using an HDMI Splitter to Extend Displays on a Mac

The short answer is NO. If you want to extend your image and use dual displays simultaneously, an HDMI splitter won’t work. A splitter can only split the image into two duplicates but cannot extend the image. To do this, you need a proper adapter.

So, Which Port Does My Mac Have?

The hardest part of connecting a display to your Mac is to find out what cable or adapter you need to connect a display to your machine. The cable you need changes depending on the model of Mac you now use. This is because Apple has changed a few different ports on its Mac lineup over the years, with the most recent ones boosting Thunderbolt ports only. 

The M1 Pro and M1 Max MacBook Pro 14 and 16 inches feature Thunderbolt 4 ports and an HDMI port, so you have two options to connect a second monitor. Meanwhile, the 2020 M1 MacBook Pro only supports Thunderbolt ports. 

How Many Monitors Can I Connect to my Mac?

This depends on which model you have. Some Macs can support up to five additional displays, while the M1 Macs, including the Air and 13 in Pro, only support one additional display. 

The 2021 M1 Pro MacBook 14 and 16 or Mac Studio (2022) can connect to two external displays, while the M1 Max variant can have up to 4 simultaneously. 

How to Extend Displays on Mac

In the section below, we tried connecting an LG UltraFine 5K Display to our 16-inch M1 Pro MacBook Pro (2021). If you own a 2016 MacBook Pro or newer one, you can connect up to two LG UltraFine 5K Displays simultaneously. We connected the display directly to our MacBook Pro via the included Thunderbolt 4 cable. 

Once you are done, go to the Apple menu > System Preferences > Displays > Arrangement > uncheck the box next to the Mirror Displays option. Now, arrange your displays and move the second one to your preferred position. 

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