M1 Mac trick lets you use up to 6 external displays at once

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M1 Mac with six external displays
Apple officially supports up to two.
Photo: Ruslan Tulupov

A newly discovered M1 Mac trick lets you use up to six external displays simultaneously. It is simple to set up, and a YouTube video by an M1 Mac owner suggests performance is decent.

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One of the downsides to buying an M1 Mac right now is that they officially support just two displays. If you’re using a MacBook Air or MacBook Pro, that’s one external display plus the built-in screen.

But Ruslan Tulupov stumbled across an easy workaround that lets M1 machines run up to six external displays at once with no apparent negative impact on performance.

Use 6 displays with an M1 Mac

Tulupov tested the trick on the new Mac mini and MacBook Air using a mix of 4K and 1080p displays. In case you’re wondering, six 4K screens isn’t possible because of bandwidth limits.

So long as you don’t try to exceed those Thunderbolt port limits, however, six displays work just fine. Don’t believe us? Check out the impressive demonstration in Tulupov’s video below.

Not only do the displays work, but Tulupov was able to run full-resolution videos on all six displays simultaneously without a hitch. Performance looks snappy, and the new Mac mini doesn’t even get warm.

What you need

Tulupov hasn’t tested this setup with Sidecar yet, but he says it might be possible to use seven screens at once — if you count an iPad.

To use more than two displays with an M1 Mac, you’ll need the DisplayLink software for macOS (free), which works fine under Big Sur, and a 4K DisplayPort to USB-C adapter.

You can then follow Tulupov’s separate video on how to set it all up.