Who doesn’t love a clean, uncluttered computer setup? It doesn’t have to be “minimalist,” like it’s trying to impersonate a Zen rock garden, it just has to be simple and productive.
Today’s featured 15-inch M2 Pro MacBook Air and 11-inch M2 iPad Pro setup gets by quite nicely with one external monitor and the use of Sidecar.
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15-inch M2 Pro MacBook Air and 11-inch M2 iPad Pro setup relies on one external monitor and Sidecar
Redditor SeamustheAmos showcased the clean setup in a post entitled, “MacBook Air 15-inch setup. Feedback is welcome.”
His Fully standing desk — with a cable-management tray underneath — holds a 15-inch M2 MacBook Air (closed) driving a 17-inch Dell 4K IPS thin-bezel monitor mounted on a Kensington monitor arm. Having the screen on an arm rather than a stand helps clear up desk space and makes positioning easy. The little black item on top of the monitor is not a webcam but a Belkin mount for iPhone that allows the use of Continuity Camera functionality.
In addition, the desk holds some familiar suspects for input devices — the very popular Logitech MX Keys wireless keyboard and Logitech MX Master 3 wireless mouse.
Other than that, it’s pretty much down to an 11-inch M2 iPad Pro and a Universal Audio Volt audio interface where he can plug in a microphone and his high-end Sennheiser reference over-ear headphones for videoconferencing, calls and tunes.
Sidecar makes iPad a screen extension
Seamus makes typical use of Apple’s Sidecar functionality to get his killer M2 iPad Pro in on the setup action.
“I’ve got the same comp,” a commenter said. “How do you justify the iPad in your work flow?”
“I use Sidecar and move apps to the iPad when I just passively want to have something open, but not have it take up screen real estate on the big monitor (e.g. Google Chat for work or Gmail),” Seamus replied. “I’ll usually snap Safari tabs side by side on the big monitor.”
Try a vertical stand for MacBook Air
Another person made a suggestion regarding the MacBook Air, sitting closed in the upper right corner of the desk.
“If you aren’t going to open the MacBook for another screen, then I would suggest putting it in a vertical stand to reclaim even more desk space,” they said.
Seamus loved the idea and asked if the TwelveSouth Bookarc for MacBook would do the trick. And it would, the commenter agreed.
For that matter, keeping the MacBook Air open on a stand (or not) would make a functional three-screen setup, another user pointed out.
Monitor serves as USB-C hub
On aspect of the setup that helps keep it simple is that the Dell display serves as a USB-C hub and power source.
“The monitor has a hub built-in,” Seamus explained. “All I have to do it connect the one cable and turn the monitor on. Supplies power and data to the MBA. No hub needed as there’s a hub built into the monitor. Supports USB 3.0 and has UCB-C for charging the laptop and data connection. Helps me deal with only having two USB-C ports on the [MBA].”
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