| Cult of Mac

Wildly expansive USB-C hub jacks up new Mac Studio [Setups]

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With the dock it sits on, that Mac Studio is even more formidable.
With the dock it sits on, that Mac Studio is even more formidable.
Photo: Affectionate-Degree3@Reddit.com

A cool aspect of both Mac minis and the newer Mac Studio are the platform-like USB-C hubs festooned with ports and added storage capacity that third parties have designed for them to sit on. Satechi was quick out of the gate with one for the mini, but there are other such cleverly designed, space-saving hubs on the market. And many of them also fit the Studio.

Today’s featured setup boasts a powerful new Mac Studio perched on a Qwiizlab hub as it drives an LG UltraWide display, among other gear.

Seriously, how big is too big for desktop speakers? [Setups]

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Side by side images show the computer setup's front and back sides.
Side by side images show the computer setup's front and back sides. Can you spot the speakers? Squint if you must.
Photo: Kulimeya@Reddit.com

We love serious audio here at Setups Central. But is it possible for the audio gear in your computer setup to be too serious? For example, can your desktop speakers be too comically oversized, as if you’re making some sort of visual joke about your life being all about the music?

In today’s featured setup, a magnificent 32-inch Pro Display XDR actually manages to look puny in between two monstrously huge Yamaha powered studio monitors. And yet, believe it or not, they may not actually be too big.

Is it OK to use a Mac mini as a stand for your display? [Setups]

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Is it OK to rest your display on top of your Mac mini?
Is it OK to rest your display on top of your Mac mini?
Photo: techsteveo@Reddit.com

We’ve written about storing a Mac mini in an upright rather than a flat position to save space. It’s OK to do if the machine’s intake and exhaust vents are not blocked. But what about using your Mac mini as a stand for a display, as in today’s featured computer setup?

It’s not necessarily quite as cut-and-dried as the upright mini question. Whether it’s totally fine or a little risky depends a little more on the specific Mac mini and the kind of monitor you use.

Clean M1 Mac mini station is an audio-visual beast [Setups]

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This clean, M1 Mac mini-based setup packs a lot of audio-visual firepower.
This clean, M1 Mac mini-based setup packs a lot of audio-visual firepower.
Photo: Halzen@Reddit.com

Some computer setups are remarkably cool for their awesome computing power. Others wow you with incredible displays, with several high-def monitors. And still others blow you away with premium sound. Or, in the case of today’s featured setup, premium audio-visual gear many people would be psyched to get their hands on.

Part 2: From PC pigsty to prim M1 Pro MacBook workstation [Setups]

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In round 2, I experiment with an open laptop stand, a mechanical keyboard with a wrist rest, a Magic Trackpad 2, an ergonomic mouse with a trackball and a monitor light bar.
In round 2, I experiment with an open laptop stand, a mechanical keyboard with a wrist rest, a Magic Trackpad 2, an ergonomic mouse with a trackball and a monitor light bar.
Photo: David Snow/Cult of Mac

I wrote recently about the shameful squalor of my previous “setup” — basically a borrowed PC laptop perched on a pile of junk — and my effort to build something worthwhile around a gleaming new 14-inch M1 Pro MacBook. Well, like a lot of people in the throes of building a computer setup, I found that second-guessing haunted me into buying a whole lot of alternative gear.

You know, for testing purposes. Trial and error. Not because of my apparent shopping addiction. Or not much, anyway.

Blow your ears clean off with perfectly mounted desktop speakers [Setups]

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Ready, aim, fire! Get the perfect sound with mounted desktop speakers.
Ready, aim, fire! Get the perfect sound with mounted desktop speakers.
Photo: rovervogue@reddit.com

These days, you can find computers and monitors with pretty good speakers. Or you can set up a pair HomePod minis or some other nice little Bluetooth speakers for solid computer setup sound.

But some people aren’t happy unless they have massive audio power on the desktop, complete with perfectly positioned speaker stands for maximum balance and clarity — and all of their speakers’ impressive wattage pointed right at their face.

The fine art of getting your workstation just how you like it [Setups]

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They finally got it just like they like it. How would yours look?
They finally got it just like they like it. How would yours look?
Photo: PlaZma64@Reddit.com

There’s nothing like toiling over a computer setup until you get it just how you like it. Of course, that can mean many different things to different people. Some folks’ setups are as austere as a monk’s workbench while others look like Mission Control on steroids.

Redditor PlaZma64 recently drew attention to their newly completed setup with a post entitled, “Finally got my setup how I like it.” It’s centered on a MacBook Pro, an iPad Pro and a slew of Apple peripherals.

Super-clean rig relies on Magic Trackpad and mouse combo [Setups]

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It seems more and more people swear by the Magic Trackpad and Magic Mouse combo.
It seems more and more people swear by the Magic Trackpad and Magic Mouse combo.
Photo: i_am_cris@Reddit.com

When you travel the online highways and byways in search of cool computer setups, you start to notice certain patterns. One is that lots of people seem to love Apple’s Magic Trackpad. Another is that plenty of folks hate the Magic Mouse. And a third seems to see a growing number of people absolutely love using a Magic Trackpad + mouse combo — which some onlookers find mystifying.

Curved 40-inch HD display is too much monitor for some [Setups]

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Not bad for something stashed in the corner of your kid's room.
Not bad for something stashed in the corner of your kid's room.
Photo: c2cherry@Reddit.com

In the ongoing discussion about whether a gargantuan ultra-wide monitor beats dual monitors or vice versa, some people still chime in favoring one modest display to either of the above choices. Of course, these days, “modest” can mean in excess of 30 inches, plus a lot of bells and whistles.