Turn your iPad into a
wireless second display
wireless second display
I use this headless mode with my M2 Pro Mac Mini, and I'm loving how useful it is in increasing my Macs portability. Connecting my iPad to the Mac mini provides a great connection without any wifi which is perfect. In many cases, however, I'm using the iPad as a second monitor on my desk and in its wireless mode, even with the Mac Mini on Gigabit ethernet, it is usually laggy, rubberbanding, and latency feels super high. Sometimes the connection becomes stable, but this is not the norm - I hope to see future updates to work on this issue and to provide more features for the Luna Display!
It does what it is supposed to do, but the lag is ridiculous. Makes it not worth it unfortunately
So Luna Display came from a random event of recommended media. I have a First Gen iPad Pro, so it is limited with 2GBS of RAM. For the longest time I was considering upgrading to a new device as I was using the same iPad since 2014. The low RAM was getting in the way of doing high resource tasks, majority being digital artwork, so I needed a way to increase my RAM to get the more beefy tasks done. I was considering new devices, and even interactive display tablets for my Desktop as it has 8x more RAM. Although I still wanted something to use on the go. I never considered turning my iPad into an interactive display tablet until this showed up.
This came to be an excellent solution I never considered but works well. I can work on beefy projects on my PC, using the iPad as an interactive monitor that can still use my apple pencil, and use my iPad for smaller projects on the go that need less power.
There is one thing I wish they would include in the packaging of the dongle and possibly on the menus of the app, is an addition on how to get the service to work correctly.
After much trial and error, I found the sequence you want to do to get it working first try is to plug the dongle in or already have it so, open the host device app(see if it wants you to re-plug before continuing), plug in or connect the secondary device to wi-fi, and then open the app on the secondary device. Going outside this order leads to issues and it not setting up correctly. Which if you mess up the order, it is best to just close the apps, disconnect the secondary device, restart the host device, and make sure you get the order right on the next try.
A little card or an addition to the "getting started" card in the box the dongle is shipped in will help a long way. If possible, add an internal help message that doesn't need to go on internet explaining this order inside the apps.
I had a lot of trouble getting started. Luna simply wouldn’t connect even though I was doing everything right. I tried wired and manual wifi. No dice. It took reading through several troubleshooting pages before I found out that Macs have a limited number of external displays, and the Luna display counts against that amount. My MacBook can only have 2 external displays. I already had 2, and wanted to add my old iMac as a third display. So the Luna didn’t quite work for what I wanted to do.
Once I unplugged one of my other external monitors, the Luna display connected immediately and worked great. The screen was crisp and quite responsive. When swiping between desktops or moving windows around, it loses some clarity, but it resolves into high quality crispness in less than a second. Videos are lower quality because they change constantly. The quality for static graphics is a little better than I can get from using AirPlay to use my iMac as another monitor. The tradeoff is the loss of clarity with video and when moving/opening windows and such. The advantage of using AirPlay is I can have two external monitors PLUS AirPlaying to my old iMac for a third monitor.
When it works, it’s great. I now use my Late-2014 iMac as a secondary monitor next to my Studio Display. However, getting Luna Display to run is a struggle. I never was able to boot to it and run it in headless mode. I’ve also found it struggles with ethernet-only connection. It wants a wifi connection to star and will then switch to ethernet but that’s not ideal. It also takes about 5-6 times to connect after multiple connection errors. …but when it finally does work, it allows my to use my old iMac which is a huge benefit. It seems there are still many things for the company to work out with this product. I hope they continue with updates.