MacBook Pro drives dynamic, well-mounted displays [Setups]


A 34-inch ultra-wide display in landscape mode and a 24-inch monitor in portrait mode make a good combo.
A 34-inch ultra-wide display in landscape mode and a 24-inch monitor in portrait mode make a good combo.

Powerful MacBook Pro — check. Extremely capable USB dock — check. Dazzling displays properly mounted in different orientations — check. Two of the best input devices you can buy — check.

Today’s featured computer setup seems to have it all without going overboard, and it all rests easily on a solid standing desk from New Zealand.

And the user even recommends deals on truly stellar noise-canceling headphones. Read on for more and don’t miss the gear list at the bottom of the page.

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Tidy setup’s MacBook Pro drives well-mounted Dell displays in landscape and portrait modes

Redditor PassiveInterfce (PI) showcased the clean setup in a post entitled, “It’s not a lot but it makes me really happy 😊 built it over the course of two years. What else would you add to it?”

Answers to the question in the post’s title about what to add were few in number. One person suggested a desk mat for the Deskbird Signature Standing Desk. Others showed more interest in complimenting the MacBook Pro setup and asking a question or two.

Nice monitors on nifty mounts

Commenters inquired about the nicely mounted Dell displays. The MacBook, on its vertical laptop stand at left, connects to them via a Dell WD19TBS Dock with 10 USB ports and 130W of charging power for the laptop.

“It powers on my Mac and charges it too,” PI said in answer to a question.”Any of the [Dell] WD19 series will do. They are awesome docks!”

The mounts make it so the monitors can sit flush to the wall or move around easily for the best viewing angle.

The display in landscape (horizontal) mode is a 34-inch Dell P3421W UltraWide monitor. Its wide-quad, high-definition (WQHD) screen features 3440 x 1440 pixel resolution and 1.07 billion colors. It sits on a Loctek Monitor Mount, which features a heavy-duty, single-monitor ergonomic gas-spring arm for displays up to 35 inches.

The monitor in portrait (vertical) mode on the right is a 24-inch Dell U2419H display with 1920 x 1080 pixel resolution, Flicker Free tech and a refresh rate of 60Hz. It sits on a Sylex Ergonomics mount. PI described the mount as “cheap.” It’s probably on par with the Amazon Basics mount.

MacBook Pro used in ‘clamshell’ mode

Here's the setup as it appeared on the old desk, before PI replaced it with a "proper" standing desk. This shot also shows the portrait-mode display's Silex Ergonomics mount.
Here’s the setup as it appeared on a previous desk, before PI replaced it with a “proper” standing desk with almost no monitor-wobble. This shot also shows the portrait-mode display’s Sylex Ergonomics mount.

PI’s MacBook Pro sits on a vertical stand in clamshell mode, meaning it operates while closed.

“Do you ever get issues with waking the computer after sleeping?” asked a commenter. “I’ve got an M1 MBP in clamshell mode and it takes a long time and a lot of switching the monitor off and on again just to wake it after it sleeps. Can’t find a fix for it.”

Here’s how PI replied:

I know exactly what you mean. I was able to put that issue to bed by selecting the right display cables between the monitors and the docking station ([Dell] WD19TBS). I have one normal display cable going from the vertical monitor to the docking station. And another cable (display port to USB-C) cable going from the horizontal monitor to the docking station.

Proper input peripherals

For input devices, PI uses a classic combination of a Keychron K4 wireless mechanical keyboard and a Logitech MX Master 3 wireless mouse. If there are two companies that easily rival Apple for dominance over input devices even in Mac setups, it’s those two.

“I’m pretty sure the MX Master is currently the best mouse out there,” PI said when a commenter expressed a similar sentiment.

Classy headphones

And finally, this setup features a great set of active noise-canceling (ANC), over-ear headphones.

“Those are the Sony WH-1000XM4 headphones, just got superseded by the XM5 variant and can be had for a pretty fantastic price right now,” PI said. “Fantastic headphones if you’re looking for noise cancelling and all-day comfort.”

As he said, the XM5 cans are Sony’s new ANC flagship headphones, but the XM4 are still great — especially if you can find a good deal. While new ones on Amazon cost about $350, some refurbished XM4 sets go for about $100 less than that. XM5s typically cost $399.

And here's a head-on view of the setup.
And here’s a head-on view of the setup, with its Baby Groot desktop wallpaper. The little guy is from Marvel Comics and the “Guardians of the Galaxy” films.

Shop these items now:

Computer, stand and dock:

Displays and mounts:

Input devices:



If you would like to see your setup featured on Cult of Mac, send some high-res pictures to 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.


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