| Cult of Mac

The best of CES for the Mac? More Retina displays.

By

Left to right: The Samsung ViewFinity S9, Apple Studio Display and Dell UltraSharp 32.
Left to right: The Samsung ViewFinity S9, Apple Studio Display and Dell UltraSharp 32.
Image: Samsung/Apple/Dell

The Mac is hardly ever the focus of events like CES. But at this year’s massive tech conference in Las Vegas, two promising displays were announced by Samsung and Dell.

Any new Retina display options for the Mac are a welcome treat. Let’s see how these new monitors stack up.

Apple-hating programmer now swears by Mac Studio, Pro Display XDR [Setups]

By

The person who uses this setup used to hate Apple.
The person who uses this setup used to hate Apple.
Photo: MutedStudy1881@Reddit.com

Some folks insist people never change, others say they often do. And proof of the latter shows up in today’s featured Mac Studio computer setup featuring Apple’s magnificent 6K Pro Display XDR.

It belongs to a Linux-loving software programmer who used to be strongly anti-Apple, according to her husband.

Developer shows Mac Pro is not Apple’s only ‘cheese grater’ [Setups]

By

Photos almost always show the front of the Pro Display XDR, not the back.
Photos almost always show the front of the Pro Display XDR, not the back.
Photo: Car333@Reddit.com

The Mac Pro of recent vintage is famously compared to a cheese grater because of the holes in its casing’s design that look like a huge version of the kitchen tool. But did you know it’s not the only high-end product Apple makes that follows that design?

Today’s featured M1 Max MacBook Pro setup shows it. How often do you see the back of a Pro Display XDR in photographs? Plenty of people admiring the setup expressed surprise that the backside of Apple’s top display is full-on cheese grater.

This sick rig sports 9 Macs and 3 Apple displays [Setups]

By

Can you picture needing 9 Macs, including 3 top-shelf machines?
Can you picture needing 9 Macs, including 3 top-shelf machines?
Photo: Dalvenjha@Reddit.com

Occasionally a computer setup displayed on social media makes you swoon. Usually it’s a combination of amazing gear, artful arrangement and exceptional photography, like something staged by a pro. But sometimes it’s just a sick amount of awesome Apple computers and displays.

Today’s featured setup, run by a consultant who “works for several companies,” relies on four high-spec Macs, five very-nice-but-not-exceptional Macs and three Apple Displays, including a Pro Display XDR — which goes for $5,000 or more by itself.

Does your wallet hurt yet? We just took ours to the ER.

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

By

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.

New Vivid app doubles brightness of mini-LED screens for Mac

By

The new app Vivid can just about double screen brightness on mini-LEDs for Mac (but not iPad).
The new app Vivid can just about double screen brightness on mini-LEDs for Mac (but not iPad).
Photo: Jordi Bruin

When you watch HDR videos on the mini-LED screens of a Pro Display XDR or a 2021 MacBook Pro, the displays can crank out up to 1,600 nits of brightness. But under most conditions, they’ll emit about 500. So a new app called Vivid, by developers Jordi Bruin and Ben Harraway, now offers to double usable screen brightness under all conditions.

“Full Brightness, System-Wide,” reads the app’s tagline.

How Apple Studio Display stacks up against Pro Display XDR and others

By

The Studio Display, Pro Display XDR, iMac 24″ and 16″ MacBook Pro.
From left to right: The 16″ MacBook Pro, the 24″ iMac, the Studio Display and Pro Display XDR.
Photo: Apple

We have been blessed to live in interesting times. For the first time since 2010, we have not just one, but two external monitors from Apple.

How does Apple’s latest offering — the Studio Display, introduced during Tuesday’s “Peek Performance” event — stack up against the high-end Pro Display XDR, the outgoing LG UltraFine 5K and the displays of other Macs?

Let’s dive in.

Apple Studio Display brings high-end monitor down to affordable price

By

Apple Studio Display
The new Apple Studio Display.
Photo: Apple

The Apple Studio Display, revealed Tuesday alongside the new Mac Studio desktop, finally brings a high-end Apple monitor at a more-affordable price point.

Like the MacBook Pro and Pro Display XDR, the new 27-inch 5K monitor features TrueTone, P3 wide color gamut, studio-quality microphones, a six-speaker sound system, a thin bezel and optional nano-texture glass. But at $1,599, it costs just a fraction of the Pro Display XDR’s eye-watering price.

“The Studio Display is in a class of its own,” said Nicole Kordes, Apple’s engineering program manager for Mac, during Tuesday’s Peek Performance event. “Along with a gorgeous screen. It’s loaded with incredible features that no other desktop display can deliver. And it provides that integrated experience Mac users love.”

Drool-worthy gear: Former PC gamer goes all-in on Mac conversion [Setups]

By

You don't see two Pro Display XDRs in one setup very often.
You don't see two Pro Display XDRs in one setup very often.
Photo: UncreativeWhale@Reddit.com

When a software engineering manager who works from home decided to leave PC gaming behind, he went all-in on his Mac conversion. In part he did it for work. He slings a lot of native code for macOS in building HR recruitment software. But, working and playing from home full time, in part he did it for himself.

So why wouldn’t he buy a super-tricked out 16-inch M1 Max MacBook Pro, not one but two Apple Pro Display XDRs and pretty much top-shelf everything else?