When I first got the Mac M1 I wrote a blog post about my first-month experience with it.
There was and has been until yesterday one thing which irked me about it when using it at home.
I could only attach one external monitor to it.
Why this irked me, I’ve no idea, I was connecting a Samsung ultra-wide as the second display, so o have had plenty of real estate there, however, I have a 2nd external monitor on the wall. My far cheaper Chromebook can use both, my wife’s 6 yr old HP 2 in 1 can use 2 monitors.. why not this M1?
The answer seems to be in the form of the Pluggable UD6950Z USB 3/0 & USB-C Dual Displayport or HDMI Display docking station.
The link I used to buy this is here (it’s not an affiliate link, I make no money from recommending this)
This is not your £29.99 multi-port dongle type system, it is in the pricier £150+ bracket, however, it works.
The key difference between this and many other such docks is the method pluggable use to do their DisplayLink as 2 separate ports.
Before plugging anything in however the DisplayLink software needs to be installed.
I had the 1.5 version installed, and at the time of writing all 3 displays came up but in Mirror mode and I couldn’t seem to get them to work independently. Installing the 1.6 Beta on Montaray fixed that problem.
Under Display in Settings, I was able then to set the layout
Which translated into this
I have noted a couple of bugs that I think are more to do with Montaray than the DisplayLinks beta driver.
When rebooting the M1 make sure the dock isn’t plugged in until you have logged in
I have rebooted the M1 a couple of times over the last day and a bit and when doing so the ultrawide won’t be recognised and the displays will only provide mirror capabilities. If I unplug the Dock, reboot/shutdown (either) and then login, THEN plug in the dock it all works fine.
The far-right screen on a couple of occasions has given up displaying virtual screens.
I make heavy use of the Virtual desktops, I noticed that the screen to the far right won’t always let me use them.. a reboot fixes this.
It’s a pricy way to get the multi-screen setup I had on my old mac back again, however, I can promise it works well and between MacOS and Displaylink I think it will only get better.