Luna Display turns iPad into Mac mini touch screen

2019-05-08 11:28 #0 by: Niklas

Astro HQ are the creators behind a small USB dongle, called Luna Display. Put it in a Mac and combine it with an iPad and it turns the iPad into a Mac display.

Pairing is very easy. You install the Luna Display app on both the iPad and the Mac. Then you start the iPad app. After a few seconds, you will see your Mac screen on the iPad. You can touch the screen to push buttons and manipulate things, but since the Mac was made to work with a mouse or trackpad and a keyboard, I recommend you use them as well. For my Mac mini, I use an Apple Magic Keyboard and a Magic Trackpad. The Mac itself is hidden behind a cover on a hallway wall. I can sit in the living room with the iPad, wireless keyboard and trackpad working in macOS.

My Mac mini has never had its own display, so Luna Display is a perfect solution to temporarily use an iPad when I need to use the Mac. My iPads are my 99 percent work and leisure devices, but I need to do things on the Mac mini now and then.

The connection between an iPad and the Mac feels instantaneous. I notice no lag at all (as with VNC tools). I probably could work fulltime with this type of setup.

A Luna Display dongle costs 80 USD. They come in two types, with USB-C contact, and with Mini DisplayPort. My Mac mini is a 2011 model so I use the Mini DisplayPort Luna Display.

If you want a cheaper, but not wireless, solution for using iPad as a Mac display, try the Astropad app (also by Astro HQ). You connect iPad and Mac with a regular Lightning to USB cable.

I almost forgot! Off course you can use the iPad as a second display if your Mac already has one. That was the primary use of it. 🙂

Do you have the need for a solution like this?

» Luna Display | Turn your iPad into a second display

» ‎Luna Display in App Store

» Astropad turns your iPad into a pen display

» ‎Astropad Standard in App Store

2019-05-08 14:14 #1 by: Leia

With the Luna display, keyboard and tracking pad do you think this could be a cheaper alternative to buying an MacBook laptop/computer?

All the best, Leia

Host of  Gluten-Free Living | News  | English Language Heart

2019-05-08 15:55 #2 by: Leia

Perhaps save your money! I've just heard rumours that this year's Worldwide Developers Conference, or WWDC (June 3), Apple may present a new feature that will let users use their iPad as a second Mac screen with the ability to draw with an Apple Pencil, expand the viewing area, and get Mac notifications. 

All the best, Leia

Host of  Gluten-Free Living | News  | English Language Heart

2019-05-08 17:25 #3 by: Niklas

#1: As long as you have a Mac or buy a cheap Mac mini it will be cheaper than buying a new MacBook.

#2: I have heard those rumors but not in any detail so it's difficult to compare.

2019-05-13 22:32 #4 by: jordan

This looks like a handy tool to have! Sadly though I do not own an Apple PC of any kind. Is there any way for the iPad to mirror PCs?

2019-05-14 06:32 #5 by: Niklas

#4: None that I have seen, but it's not unthinkable that Astro HQ eventually makes a Luna Display that works with Windows. I think that could be a big market.


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