Triple 4K displays: Too many or just right? [Setups]


Triple 4K displays in Mac Studio setup
That is an awful lot of screen real estate.

How many external displays would you consider ideal in your computer setup? Surprisingly, a lot of folks who assume it’s at least two end up regretting the idea. Today’s Mac Studio rig with triple 4K displays — three 32-inchers — sparked some debate on the matter.

That’s an awful lot of screen real estate that calls for a lot of head turning.

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Triple 4K displays in Mac Studio setup: Too many or just right?

Software engineer and Redditor Imtog (“Tog”) showcased the display-heavy setup in a post entitled, “Might have overdone it with triple 32″ 4K.”

Right in his title he cops to the possibility he may have gone a bit overboard with three large, high-resolution displays. His post led to a typical social media debate over how many is the right number of displays, and which resolution is best.

“I did 2 27-inch LGs and that was too much for me lol,” said Jon Young, whose setup update we covered recently. We also wrote about his rig when he downsized to one external display.

“It took a bit of adjustment to get used to having so much screen space,” Tog replied. “But as a full-stack software engineer who typically has 6-8 windows open at once, I’ve found that I no longer need to switch between them. Having them all open simultaneously has actually lightened the mental load of constantly searching for the right window.”

That sounds reasonable. The appropriate number of displays comes down to how you’ll use them. Got a whole bunch of crucial windows open at once? Well, it could be the more displays the merrier — up to a point. After all, a super-wide screen scenario can be tough on the neck, as some commenters pointed out.

What’s the optimal monitor setup?

“What do you suggest for an optimal monitor set up?” someone asked.

“There’s really only the Apple Studio Display, Pro Display XDR or Samsung Viewfinity S9, which have a retina resolution of 5K or 6K and scale perfectly with macOS,” another person replied

So that whittled the debate down to a nutshell. Others recommended various options:

  • “I found the 32-inch 4k scales pretty well at 150%. Apples XDR Pro is 6k at 32 inches so at 150% they should be the same UI size wise, no?” another person offered.
  • “2560 x 1440 is actually big enough to see without hurting your eyes, and the 2K/QHD scales to 4K extremely sharply by doubling,” another commenter said.

Naturally, people wanted to know how which scaled resolution Tog uses with his triple 4K displays and how he likes it.

“How’s the scaling working out for you and which scaled resolution are you using?” a commenter asked. “I’m thinking of doing 4k 32, just worried about text and UI sharpness since I’d be lowering PPI.”

“I was worried about that too,” Tog replied. “I’m using 3360 x 1890 and very happy with the sharpness.”

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