Will you rue the day you choose the wrong color peripherals? Will you ask strangers on social media to help you fix the problem? The owner of today’s striking M1 MacBook Air-based computer setup did just that.
But if you ask us, they could just take solace in the setup’s strengths. Those include an epic OLED smart TV and some top-shelf, professional-level audio gear, plus a cool Edison desk lamp.
But we’ll share some good advice we saw about the keyboard issue. Read more below.
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Fabulous AV gear but the wrong-color keyboard
Redditor emarossa (“Ema”) displayed a space-gray MacBook Air-centered workstation in a post entitled, “Should have bought the black keyboard.”
As you can see in the photograph, the silver-and-white Magic Keyboard sticks out like a sore thumb against the dark-colored setup. Framed album cover art from the British metalcore band Architects looks on, darkly.
Naturally, the post’s comments section filled up with space-gray and black keyboard recommendations.
“MX Mac Mini keyboard. Then toss the apple one in the closet for a rainy day LOL,” one person said, recommending the popular Logitech keeb. “Ninja edit: I personally use a Nuphy Air 75 for Mac, I recommend the MX keys for most people. Beware the keyboard rabbit hole is deep and unyielding.”
Other folks made the same Logitech MX Keys wireless keyboard recommendation, and one tossed in the new MX mechanical versions.
Other suggestions popped up, some in a humorous vein.
“Spray paint, my friend. Spray. Paint,” said one.
“Nah. If anyone asks, you can say you wanted to be diverse,” said another.
“Maybe add some white stuff and make it black and white,” said a third. “That will look dope!”
And we can’t overlook this practical gem, which is an $8 fix that doesn’t result in having an extra keyboard: “Get a keyboard cover. I can’t stand the feel of the magic keyboard without mine.”
‘Cheap’ OLED via smart TV
The display Ema runs with the MacBook Air is actually a 48-inch LG C1 OLED Smart TV rather than a computer monitor.
When someone asked why you’d use that instead of a monitor, one reply said “‘Cheap’ OLED would be one reason.”
But it’s not that cheap, really — if not for sale prices, anyway. Normally $1,500, the TV is marked down to $897 on Amazon (see list below).
OLED stands for organic light-emitting diode. Each pixel in an OLED display is made of a material that glows in response to an electric current. There is no backlighting, which allows truer blacks and remarkable contrast.
OLED monitors are on the rise, but remain relatively expensive.
Arguably, the big, 120Hz LG is better for watching movies than peering at spreadsheets, as one commenter implied. The TV has an advanced AI 4K processor, Cinema HDR, Dolby Vision IQ, Dolby Atmos and a “Filmmaker Mode.” It features built-in access to Apple TV, Netflix, Prime Video, Disney+ and more.
And gamers get a Game Optimizer with Auto Low-Latency Mode, plus the OLED benefit of fast pixel response speeds for minimal blurring.
The setup’s audio gear is impressive. And, as some commenters noted, some of it is on the pricey side.
An Audio Technica AT2020USB+ cardioid condenser microphone sits on a MaxMount SLIM Microphone Boom Arm. The mic features a USB output for digital recording.
It also boasts a high-quality analog-digital converter with 16 bit, 44.1/48 kilohertz sampling rate for crisp sound.
And you can get it for 52% off at Amazon, marked down to $129 from $269.
The headset is nice, too. Premium Audeze LCD-X over-ear open-back headphones are given even bigger sound by a Fostex HP-A3 USB DAC and headphone amp.
Made in Southern California, the planar magnetic headphones have “an efficiency of 103dB/1Mw and an impedance of 20 ohms they are the perfect option for anyone seeking a reference quality headphone,” according to Audeze, plus “large ultra-thin 106 mm diaphragms with Audeze’s proprietary Fazor elements and double-sided magnetic arrays. Frequency response from 12Hz – 20kHz extended out to 50kHz.”
Planar magnetic cans don’t come cheap, though. You can pick these up for $1200 for a 2021 model and $1,699 for a newer one. Not all planar magnetic headphones come at that dear a price, but many do.
All sale prices noted above were in effect as of Sunday afternoon Pacific time on Amazon.
Shop these items now:
- Audio Technica AT2020USB+ microphone
- MaxMount SLIM Microphone Boom Arm
- Audeze LCD-X over-ear open-back headphones
- Fostex HP-A3 USB DAC and headphone amp
If you would like to see your setup featured on Cult of Mac, send some high-res pictures to firstname.lastname@example.org. 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.