You can use iMac as monitor for PC with its target display mode. We will show you some criteria that your iMac should have to fulfil the requirement.
SO, what are the requirements that your iMac should complete? Using iMac as an external monitor for a PC is not that easy as you think. Obviously, some more factors and features meet those devices to fulfill the needs of both iMac and another Mac. Let’s focus on the main features.
Using iMac as a monitor for PC / The main iMac criteria
When speaking about iMac, this category can be divided into two main classes according to the made year of your iMac.
Models introduced in 2011 to 2014 for using iMac as monitor for PC
These iMac models are certainly older compared to recent models. So, let’s focus on the requirements on how to use iMac as monitor for PC.
– The iMac you are trying to set up as the monitor has pre-installed versions of macOS High Sierra or earlier.
– The other iMac that you are going to connect to it should be introduced in 2019. Also, it must have pre-installed MacOS Catalina.
– There should be a cable to connect those two iMac devices. The cable should be either Thunderbolt or Thunderbolt 2 cable.
Models introduced in 2009 and 2010 for using iMac as PC monitor
Of course, you can set those models as an external monitor. But they must have below capabilities.
– Like the previous models, these models also have pre-installed versions of macOS High Sierra or earlier.
– Again, same as the above models, the other iMac that you will connect to should be introduced in 2019. Also, it must have pre-installed MacOS Catalina.
– But the cable that you are trying to connect those devices are different. The cable must be a Mini Display Port cable.
Short summary of the connectivity possibility for using iMac as PC monitor
But your Mac must be running with MacOS 10.6.1 or later versions.
|iMac model||Port type||Compatible Mac source|
|2009 to 2010 27 inch iMac||Mini Display Port||Mac with mini Display Port or Thunderbolt|
|2011 to 2014 iMac||Thunderbolt||Mac with Thunderbolt|
|!014 to 2015 Retina iMac||Thunderbolt||Not supportive for iMac display mode|
How can you set to use iMac as monitor for PC
Let’s focus on the main content to use iMac as monitor for PC stepwise for a better understanding.
– Make sure the iMac you are trying to set up as the monitor meets the requirements mentioned above.
– If not, you need to install and ready the device at first.
– You need another Mac to connect your iMac to empower the monitor.
– Switch on the particular Mac and ready the device by logging into a macOS user account.
– Then, you need to connect those Mac devices using an appropriate thunderbolt cable or Mini Display Port cable.
– Switch on relevant iMac and press F-2 on the keyboard. Then you can see the desktop of another Mac in your iMac.
– Now you use iMac as PC monitor to enjoy and carry on the work that you had in your mind.
– Once you finish the work, you can easily exit by re-pressing the command F-2 on the iMac keyboard.
– Or you can disconnect both Machines by removing the cable.
– If not, you can restart your iMac to terminate the connection between another Mac.
Some important facts you need to remember when use iMac as monitor for PC
There are some certain facts you need to pay attention for the use iMac as PC monitor regarding the connectivity of those devices.
– You can use more than one iMac as your display without an issue. But make sure to connect those iMac devices directly to your Mac device using appropriate cables.
– It means you cannot use multiple iMac displays while connecting them to your current iMac device.
– Suppose you are working on your iMac for music when iMac is connecting to your other Mac. Then you can start to use iMac as your display without an issue. But your music does not pause or stop because of the new display mode. It will work continuously as a background app in your iMac.
– When you need to use built-in cameras or ports other than the remaining ports of your Mac, you need to add them separately. You cannot use the built-in cameras and ports of your iMac device.
– All this means you can only use the display of the iMac for your Mac device. You cannot use any single parameter from your iMac other than the display.
What parameters can you control of the iMac using another Mac?
All parameters, as mentioned above, show the thing you cannot do while both devices are together. But there are a few things you can do to control iMac using your other Mac. So it is worth studying them as well.
– You can control the sound and use the microphone of the iMac with the control of your other Mac.
– You need to visit Apple menu > system performances > Sounds > Output
– At the state of the output, you will see the options you can take.
– See and choose the option of iMac carefully as the output mode.
– Then, you can use the sound and media keys of another Mac keyboard to control the sound and microphone outputs of your iMac.
– Same as the sound and audio, you can change the brightness of the iMac.
– To control the brightness of the iMac display, you can use the settings of another Mac.
– When iMac is in connecting mode to another Mac, you can display preferences in another Mac.
– Or you can simply use the brightness keys on the keyboard of another Mac.
Amount of thunderbolt port connections of Mac devices to use iMac as a monitor for PC
It is important to know the number of ports that your Mac device obtained.
MacBook Air – 2011 1
MacBook Air- 2012 to 2014 2
MacBook Pro 13inch 2011 1
MacBook Pro Retina 2012 2
MacBook Pro 15inch 2011 2
MacBook Pro 17inch 2011 2
Mac mini 2.3GHz 2011 1
Mac mini 2.5GHz 2011 2
Mac Pro 2013 6
So if you need more displays from your iMac, you need to use multiple ports from another Mac.
What happened if you cannot use iMac as a monitor for PC
Sometimes your iMac does not support another Mac as a display. It is a common issue among iMac and Mac connections. So here we will give some simple tips to overcome that issue.
– Simply restart your iMac for once.
– If no development, go for the restart of another Mac also.
– Unplug the connecting cable from both end and re-plug again.
– Then press the F-2 button of your iMac.
Still, your iMac does not support a PC? Then you need to go for deeper settings to use iMac as monitor for PC by solving this matter.
– If you are currently logged in to the iMac that you need to use as the display, return to the main login window. For that, press Apple Menu > log out.
– Then press F-2 again to connect to another Mac.
Sometimes it is also not going to work. Because some older keyboards of iMac devices are not supported to above display transferring. So, you need to go for more advanced settings.
– At this time, you have to go for Apple menu > system performances.
– Then, use F-1 and F-2 together to take the output.
– Or you can try F-n and F-2 for more settings.
If still there were no clue at opening the display in your iMac, you should pay attention to the app that installed in the iMac. Only macOS High Sierra 10.13. 6 or earlier apps allow for this operation. You cannot use the latest versions of macOS or booth camp and windows for this connection. Therefore make sure your device is correctly equipped with the appropriate software.
What about the use of iMac as a monitor for PC 2017
According to Apple’s latest statement, they do not allow to use new 2017 iMac as a monitor for PC. Apple permitted to connect iMac as a target display mode only for Mac from 2009 to 2014.
The conclusion at last
Now you will see what are the important factors for using iMac as external monitor for PC. Even everything like performances, sounds, colors, brightness, and motion are marvelous, and you need to try hard for the best compatible device pairing for better output.
But this connection is not recommended for a longer time. This is good for a temporary period. Because using a longer period, you will harm the computing power of iMac. Because it is a waste to pay for iMac only for the display.