Dave recently got a new purple M1 iMac and he wants to get a 4K monitor for video editing. Should he use Thunderbolt 4 or USB? Leo says definitely Thunderbolt 4. It will give up to 6K resolution at up to 60hz. Anker has a TB4 docking station for around $300. Great deal.
Chris recently picked up an M1 MacBook Air. He did a data migration, and it crashed and never recovered. So he took it back to the Apple Store, and they fixed it. But what he wants to know is if he can now add a second monitor and how. Leo says that there's a single port on the MacBook Air, and you need an HDMI to USBC dongle to connect the monitor to the system. Leo got a Thunderbolt 3 dock from Anker, which is $250. So that's not cheap.
Thomas is looking to get an iPad to supplement his iPhone and iMac. The 12.9" iPad Pro seems too big. So he's looking at the 11". Or should he get the iPad Air? Leo says to get the iPad Air. It has a true motion screen, can now use the Apple Pencil, and is a great first iPad. It's also just as fast or even faster. Not to mention a lot less expensive. It also has the A14 Bionic chip, which is essentially the M1 processor. The only real advantage the pro models have is storage. The Air only gets him 256GB. But that's enough.
John recently recycled a 2013 iMac for a client who loves Photoshop. He used a Thunderbolt 2 adapter to display port for a second monitor. But with the latest 5K iMac, he needs a Thunderbolt 3 to Thunderbolt 2 adapter so he can use the second monitor. But it doesn't recognize it. What can he do? Leo says that John needs a DVI adapter to keep it digital. Apple suggests starting up in safe mode to see if it works. If it does, there's a driver issue causing the problem. But it may be time to update the monitor. You can get one for under $100. Leo likes the AOC USB monitor.
Mark has a 2012 iMac and a 2018 Mac Mini, along with a 2016 MacBook Pro and 12" iPad Pro. Can he hook up his Macbook Pro or his MacMini to his iMac and use the display? It can on a limited number of iMacs and is called Target Display Mode. IT requires a thunderbolt connection. Here's how - https://support.apple.com/guide/mac-help/use-an-imac-as-a-display-mh30822/mac. It may not work with Mark's model, but you can do it. Only for models mid 2011 to late 2014.
Jay would like to plug in a Raspberry Pit and Mac Mini into the same monitor. Is there a switch for that? Leo says that while the Pi has an HDMI, the MacMini also offers Thunderbolt 3. So you want to get an HDMI capable monitor. Jay also says that Pi 4 is going to be TB3 compatible. Leo says if that's the case, then a splitter could be easy. Or one that has multiple inputs. KVM switches are more flexible. IOGear makes some of the best ones. Monoprice have some that are good. Most use software to control them. Leo has one called IHSE DRACO for the studio.
Kris wants to get a new hard drive for his Mac. Leo says to get a 512GB hard drive that will house the OS and programs, and then an external drive for data. Going with a Thunderbolt 3 will make it faster than the internal drive.
Brian runs an external Thunderbolt 2 drive and Parallels to dual boot into Windows. He upgraded his SSD, which works on his laptop, but it won't attach to his Mac Mini. How can he adapt it? Leo says that the Thunderbolt 3 connector is the same as the USB-C connector. But that doesn't mean it has the Thunderbolt controller built in. So he may need to get a Thunderbolt 3 external enclosure to use it, but it's not cheap. He could use a Type A USB 3.1 data cable connector to the Type-C drive and he should get full throughput.
Mike has an old collection of miniDV tapes and a camcorder that works over FireWire. How can he transfer them to his computer? Leo says that FireWire was a great format back then, but nobody really supports it anymore. So he'll have to get a box that will convert it to USB 3. The good news is that because the miniDV tapes are digital, he won't be degrading the image any. If he has a tower computer, he can buy a FireWire card for about $15. But if he only has a laptop, then he'll have to think outside the box. He'll also have to play the video tapes in real time to transfer the data.
Brian wants to upgrade his MacBook Pro RAID drive and wants the fastest drive possible. Leo says that a Thunderbolt 3 external drive would be the fastest he can get for it. Leo recommends the Envoy Pro EX from OWC. It's also bus powered. But a 6TB drive is over $1,000, so it's not cheap.