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HP DreamColor Mac connectivity & functionality: update 2012.2

MacBook Pro Retinas’ hardware is kosher for DreamColor, but Apple software currently disqualifies them without a change of religion.

By Allan Tépper | August 15, 2012


When I published HP DreamColor Mac connectivity & functionality: update 2012.1 on July 3, I had a feeling that there would likely be plenty of more news this year. That turned out to be so, and that’s why i am now publishing HP DreamColor Mac connectivity & functionality: update 2012.2. Here you’ll find out the first round of strange and ironic results when testing the HP DreamColor Monitor with the Retina version of the MacBook Pro (June 2012), and wonder why Apple is -so far- favoring Windows 7 over Mac OS 10.7 and 10.8 for the DreamColor. Thanks to readers Andrew Huebscher and Noel Adams for their input for this article.

Prior DreamColor articles in ProVideo Coalition magazine

In the past few years, I have published at least ten related articles, and Art Adams and Patrick Inhofer have also published related articles too. Many of those articles are kind of a prerequisite for this new article, and are listed and linked at the end of this article for those who may have missed them.

What you may have missed in HP DreamColor Mac connectivity & functionality: update 2012.1

  • New Mac calibration software for DreamColor

  • General challenges for directly-connecting a critical video monitor to a computer for video editing or grading

  • Solving framerate issues

  • New problem caused by Apple’s Mini DisplayPort/Thunderbolt output gone YUV, and a few solutions

  • Retina MacBook Pro’s new HDMI output: Is it kosher for DreamColor?

  • Will AJA’s upcoming T-TAP be the messiah for the DreamColor (for those who otherwise don’t need a full i/o)?

If you missed any or all of that, here’s the link to review HP DreamColor Mac connectivity & functionality: update 2012.1 before continuing here.

Reports from 2 readers who have MacBook Pro w/Retina and DreamColor

Readers Andrew Huebscher and Noel Adams have both contacted me “off air”. Andrew Huebscher is a DP/colorist who has been featured on the AJA website here. Both Andrew and Noel tried their MacBook Pro w/Retina display (June 2012 model) with their HP DreamColor monitor with Mac OS 10.7.x using an HDMI cable, and both had the undesired result of having the DreamColor monitor de-activate its DreamColor Engine. This means that the DreamColor was unfortunately receiving YUV instead of RGB. (If you don’t know what I’m talking about, please read the related DreamColor articles listed ahead.) Then both Andrew and Noel tried a Mini Display Port to DisplayPort cable and unfortunately had the same results. Both checked the Displays control panel in Mac OS’s System Preferences but found no way to “request” RGB. Later, Andrew Huebscher decided to try this cable but instead of using Mac OS, he used Windows 7 using Bootcamp, and that pleased the DreamColor. Before publishing this, I waited for 10.8 (Mountain Lion) to be released and then asked Andrew to try it with that. He gave me the bad news that the results were the same. So we now presume that the Retina MacBook Pro’s hardware GPU can deliver RGB, but the current Mac OS (both 10.7.x and 10.8.x) as of the publication date of this article unfortunately deliver only YUV, which is kryptonite for the DreamColor Engine. This is both sad and ironic. Of course, we hope that Apple will fix this soon with a software update, or that some 3rd party software developer will do it. In the meantime, the MacBook Pro with Retina is only kosher with DreamColor (without a professional i/o device from AJA, Blackmagic, Matrox or MOTU) by using Windows 7/Bootcamp or by using it with a DVI adapter, which has all of the other limitations i mentioned in HP DreamColor Mac connectivity & functionality: update 2012.1. Other HD monitors in the price range of the HP DreamColor would work… but would not have many special features that the DreamColor offers, like a true 10-bit panel and so many available color spaces just a click away. Stand by for my upcoming article: DreamColor versus its closest competitor. To make sure you continue to see my upcoming articles, sign up to my mailing list here.

Related DreamColor articles

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MikePals: | September, 18, 2013

Hi Allan,

Was wondering what your opinion was regarding the link below?  It seems they have found a way to force RGB through the display port in OSX.

Alternatively, as this seems to be a thunderbolt port issue, could i just connect my monitor via a thunderbolt>dvi adapter and achieve RGB and not YUV?  Or is the fact that the thunderbolt port is being used as the source that still forces YUV - regardless of what the cable ends with/converts to on the other end?

Thanks in advance! M

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