Dual Studio Display rig comes with a light show [Setups] | Cult of Mac

Dual Studio Display rig comes with a light show [Setups]


Nanoleaf Lines, behind the displays, are the primary lights in this show.
Nanoleaf Lines, behind the displays, are the primary lights in this show.
Photo: apple_tech_admin

Recently we wrote about a PC gamer converting to the Apple ecosystem, happily, with an M1 MacBook Pro-based setup. Now we have a lucky recipient of not one but two recently shipped Studio Displays, freshly arrived to replace a pair of gaming monitors.

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Dual Studio Display and M1 Max MacBook rig comes with a light show

We last wrote about Redditor apple_tech_admin (“ATA”) several week in weeks ago in “M1 Max MacBook drives engineer’s dual-display, dual-HomePod rig.” At the time, he’d acquired an 16-inch M1 Max-powered MacBook Pro with 32GB of integrated memory.

He paired the powerhouse laptop with two 27-inch LG Ultragear displays and two original (large) paired HomePods for big stereo sound. He still has the HomePods, plus AirPods Max and a standard array of Apple input devices, but not the LG gaming monitors.

He replaced the dual LG screens with two Studio Displays and showed off the big update in a post entitled, “Replaced my gaming monitors with Studio Displays. I love them!” He runs one monitor through a Thunderbolt dock and plugs the other one directly into the MacBook.

Studio Displays in demand

Most of the post’s comments were expressions of envy. Some people are waiting for their Studio Display shipments and others would love to have one — or two — but aren’t ready to hand over $1,600. Some commenters mentioned checking store inventories daily, hoping to find a display.

Others simply wanted to know how ATA likes the pair of 5K Studio Displays.

“How is your experience with them coming from gaming monitors?” asked a commenter. “I’m hoping to get one eventually!”

“It was jarring initially,” ATA admitted. “Having 144Hz dual monitors was nice, however because of the way macOS scales 4K monitors, I wasn’t satisfied. I miss the smoothness of it, but 5K with crystal clear text is worth it for me.”

Another person called ATA the “target market” for Studio Displays, as someone “who wants and appreciates the perfect scaling.” And that led to a discussion of why that scaling is better than that of 4K displays

Here’s an interesting answer to the question:

macOS doesn’t do percentage scaling like windows, rather it doubles a virtual resolution and downscales the rendered resolution. The upside is that you don’t get weird scaling like Windows, the downside is the slight loss in quality UNLESS the rendered resolution matches the native resolution of the display. The optimal base resolution for a 27 inch monitor is 1440p on macOS, double that on both sides and you get 5k.

Light show

And if you appreciate the light show in the photograph above, it’s courtesy of Nanoleaf Lines smart lights behind the displays and Nanoleaf Canvas light panels on the wall to the left.

Lines, by the way, recently received a new accessory in the form of skins that allow for more color options. And Nanoleaf lights became the first non-Apple Thread border routers for HomeKit early this year.

The photo below gives you a clearer look at the gear, which, as always, is available in a list of links at the bottom of this article.

And here's the M1 Max MacBook and dual Studio Display setup in broad daylight.
And here’s the M1 Max MacBook and dual Studio Display setup in broad daylight.
Photo: apple_tech_admin@Reddit.com

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If you would like to see your setup featured on Cult of Mac, send some high-res pictures to info+setups@cultofmac.com. Please provide a detailed list of your equipment. Tell us what you like or dislike about your setup, and fill us in on any special touches or challenges.