M1 Macs can run six displays if you're willing to jump through hoops

Macbook Air M1
Macbook Air M1 (Image credit: iMore)

What you need to know

  • Someone was able to get an M1 Mac mini to connect to six displays just fine, despite Apple saying that far fewer are officially supported.

Apple's new M1 Macs are already pretty cool for a whole ton of reasons but it turns out they have a party trick – they can connect to up to six displays at once. That despite Apple saying otherwise.

The M1 MacBook Air and 13-inch MacBook Pro are rated for connections to one external display with a resolution of up to 6K at 60Hz. The Mac mini is rated for two displays, although only one can handle the same 6K 60Hz output because of the reliance on HDMI 2.0. But it turns out that using a whole bunch of DisplayLink adapters gets you much more – five external displays on the portable Macs and six on the Mac mini.

That little nugget comes courtesy of YouTuber Ruslan Tulupov. Spotted by MacRumors, they have two videos that show the displays working as well as how Tulupov made them do their thing.

According to Tulupov, the whole thing runs surprisingly well – and it's all powered by a Mac mini.

Be warned though – it isn't a simple process and involves buying adapters and cables and, generally, it's all a bit of a pain. Still, if you're someone who wants all the screen space you can find this might be an option for you.

Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.

Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.