All you need to turn a MacBook into a workstation [Setups] | Cult of Mac

All you need to turn a MacBook into a workstation [Setups]


Not only does it tell time, this setup and its short list of peripherals and accessories turn a laptop into much more.
Not only does it tell time, this setup and its short list of peripherals and accessories turn a laptop into much more.

These days, MacBook laptops are more than powerful enough to handle most users’ computing needs. So if you don’t need an even brawnier desktop Mac, why not build your laptop into a full workstation with a few peripherals and accessories?

Today’s setup gets by with a 3-year-old MacBook Pro hooked up to a CalDigit Thunderbolt 3 dock and a nice LG 4K display, plus Logitech input devices and a few other items. It’s a complete workstation whether or not the user ever takes the MacBook Pro to go.

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Make a MacBook your workstation with a few peripherals and accessories

Redditor esmdg showcased the simple-but-effective setup in a post simply and effectively titled, “My Setup.”

Their 2020 M1 MacBook Pro sits unobtrusively on a Twelve South BookArc for MacBook laptop stand. The laptop is connected via a well-respected CalDigit TB3 Plus Thunderbolt 3 dock to a 27-inch LG Ultrafine 4k monitor mounted on the stout Ergo arm that comes with it.

CalDigit TB3 Plus Thunderbolt 3 Dock

And truthfully, the CalDigit dock isn’t even crucial to the setup, but it could be with expansion to more external displays and other peripherals.

The popular dock is always welcome, however, with its 87 watts of power delivery for a laptop and ability to drive two 4K displays or one 5K display at 60Hz refresh rates.

The all-aluminum dock bristles with 15 ports:

  • 2x Thunderbolt 3 40Gb/s
  • DisplayPort 1.2
  • 5x USB-A
  • 1x USB-C 3.1 Gen 1 (5Gb/s)
  • 1x USB-C 3.1 Gen2 (10Gb/s data only)
  • Gigabit Ethernet
  • UHS-II SD Card Slot (SD 4.0)
  • Optical Audio (S/PDIF)
  • 3.5mm Stereo Audio In and Out

LG Ultrafine 4K display

The 27-inch LG display is a UHD 4K (3840 x 2160 pixel resolution) IPS panel with sRGB 99%, DisplayHDR 400, USB-C PD at 60W and an ergonomic stand with C-clamp that extends, retracts, swivels, pivots and tilts.

The rest of the setup on the Ikea desktop-and-drawer platform amounts to the popular Logitech MX Keys wireless keyboard and MX Master 3S wireless mouse combo, a Deltahub Carpio 2.0 wrist rest, a ROG Sheath black mouse pad, a HomePod mini for audio and a Philips Hue smart light for atmosphere.

“9.8 out of 10, 0.2 for that mouse pad, it totally does not go with the working vibe of the setup,” voted one commenter.

“I agree!” said esmdg.

And if you like the digital clock screensaver on the display, you can get it here.

Shop these items now:

Computer, stand and dock:


Input devices:


Lighting and furniture:

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, challenges and plans for new additions.

CalDigit TS3 Plus Thunderbolt 3 Dock

87W charging, 7X USB 3.1 Ports, USB-C Gen 2, DisplayPort, UHS-II SD Card Slot, Gigabit Ethernet for Mac and PC, Thunderbolt 4 compatible.

12/03/2023 12:47 am GMT


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