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Apple’s New Mac Studio & Display: Real Impressions - 2 Weeks Later!

Thursday, April 28, 2022 10:30 pm


What’s up everyone, it’s been a minute since my last video. I was under the weather, negative for covid, negative for the flu, but I had flu like symptoms. Weird! Anyway, I’ve had the Mac Studio and the Studio Display for 2 weeks now and I wanted to give you all my real world impressions.


First of all, the Mac Studio is such a sleek aesthetically pleasing, simple steel box. The width & length of the Mac Studio is 7.7” with the height measuring 3.7”. The base model weights about 4 to 5 pounds. The M1 Ultra model weights more based on the heavy heat sink.


Let’s address the Pros & Cons of the Mac Studio. Let’s start with the Cons:


Cons:

  • According to several reviews, the M1 Max version of the Studio doesn’t outperform the M1 Max-based version of the MacBook Pro by much. I haven’t tested this, but there are several videos establishing a slight difference in performance of the same chip in the Studio and the MacBook M1 Max.

  • You must purchase a keyboard and mouse if you don’t them already. You will run into issues if you don’t have a dedicated Apple mouse or keyboard. I thought I could use my MX Master 3 by way of bluetooth, No! Then I tried the Magic Mouse from my iMac, No! So I just so happen to have my old Logitech m185 with a USB nano receiver and success. That took about 15 to 30 minutes. So, again, use a mouse with a USB receiver to connect to your Mac Studio and you’re off to the races.

  • Although Apple stated that the Mac Studio is modular, it’s not user upgradable after purchase. - Make sure you choose the right configurations at check out before clicking that buy button. First - choose the right M1 chip for your needs - M1 Max or M1 Ultra. Honestly, for 99% of you, yes, 99% of you, the M1 Max contains enough power to handle all of your needs. There’s a small percentage of individuals who need processing power of the Ultra chip.

Pros:

  • M1 Max chip is an impressive processor with great performance. I’m switching from a base model intel 27 in iMac to the M1 Max. There’s no comparison. Apps open and run faster, MacOS is snappier, and FCP, especially with the new software update makes editing video a breeze…

  • Although it doesn’t have a small form factor as the Mac mini, this beefier taller Mac mini has a sleek portable design, portable, yes, portable! If you don’t have a laptop or if you can’t complete a certain task using an iPad, you could pack the studio, keyboard, and mouse with you if you had a display to use when you arrive to your destination. You might think that’s crazy, who would travel with this thing. You’d be surprised.

  • Lots of ports - port on top of ports! (Discuss all the ports) Ports on the back, and yes, ports on the front! Making this new computer - a true pro machine. You can connect just about everything to the Mac Studio. TV monitors, additional computer monitors, etc.

Okay, who is this computer for? This new computer has the processing power to handle big task - from huge editing projects to medical imaging and animation, etc. This machine is for professional studios - sound engineers, videographers, animators, and digital artist. The Mac Studio is capable to handle the workload and at the same time, look great sitting on your desk.


With that said, here’s my real-world impression:

I’m gonna keep it real with you. I’m your usual computer user. I check my email, surf the web, binge watch YouTube videos, I also create and edit my YouTube videos for my channel, please like, subscribe, and hit that notification bell. I also create my thumbnails and I create content for my website, appleaddress.com. Thanks for visiting and reading my blogs!


As I mentioned before, I’m switching from an intel base model 27in iMac to a base model M1 Max Mac Studio! Therefore, I’m experiencing major performance differences. I want to reiterate again, apps open faster and the software is snappier. The biggest difference I’ve experienced is the FCP performance. I began to get beach balls on the iMac and the export times were slower when compared to the Mac Studio. So…. I’m very pleased with the Mac Studio and I plan to keep it for several years. Well, if Apple decides to release an aesthetic pleasing 27in iMac, I might think about trading in this entire set-up. But I think it will be a year or two before we see a new 27 or 30 in iMac!! Honestly, this set-up, the Mac Studio and Studio Display is the new 27 in iMac.


Speaking of the Studio Display, let’s address Apple’s new studio monitor…


This is the most controversial monitor ever…

Let’s address the Pros & Cons:


Cons:

  • The stand! Don’t get me wrong, I like the regular stand. It looks great, but the height of the regular stand is too low. You really need a monitor stand or riser. Apple should have created one option - a height and adjustable stand and add $250 to price. Boom, problem solved. But no… In typical Apple fashion, they gotta charge you $400 dollars to add the tilt and height adjustable stand. I wanted the tilt and height adjustable stand, that was my first purchase. But my delivery date got pushed back to I cancel my order, purchased the base model.

  • The camera is not high quality. Apple recently released a new software beta to upgrade the quality of the camera. I haven’t downloaded it because you have download the beta version of MacOS Monterey first before downloading the camera upgrade and I don’t want to do that on my main machine. So I guess I’ll have to wait to notice if there’s a change in picture quality. Observing the videos of different reviewers, especially Patel from the Verge, the quality looks better. But honestly, this is a huge disappointment. Apple really dropped the ball shipping the camera in the monitor based on the price and the build quality.

Pros:

  • The aesthetics! This monitor looks good. The build quality is second to none. Steel, not plastic, steel cashing all around the monitor and the stand. Perforated holes at the top for fan cooling and at the bottom for the speakers!!

  • Speaking of speakers… the average person who’s not a studio professional but want a really nice monitor without purchasing speakers, will be extremely happy with the speaker performance in this monitor. The sound is really great. I’m not an audiophile but the highs are crisp and the bass is just right without any adjustments.

  • 5K - 5K - 5K - there are many 5K monitors that has the same aesthetic, same build quality, and speaker performance. Don’t get me wrong, there are a few 5K monitors that outperform the Studio Display if you compare pixels and contrast ratios. But the 600 nits of brightness and all the other panel technology built into this display makes this monitor a top choice for consumers.

So, who should buy this monitor? True Apple fans will buy this monitor if they’re in the market for or just want the new hotness. I really can’t justify the price or convince someone in my family to buy this monitor if they don’t understand why it’s priced so high. If you can get over the shock of the sticker price, the fact that there isn’t an adjustable stand or decent web cam, but you really like the look of the monitor and let’s be honest, you want a really nice computer and monitor greeting you and providing that inspiration everyday when you sit at your desk ready to work. If you value pixels, web cam, and don’t care about the build quality - you just want a good monitor for less, this monitor is not for you.


My real-world impression after two weeks with this monitor. I love it. I love it for the all of the positives I mentioned and the cons don’t bother me. I don’t use the camera that much, most of my Zoom meetings take place at my day job and I’ve solved the height issue by using a monitor stand or riser. The monitor is so simple! You don’t need a power button. Shut down the Mac Studio and the monitor goes to sleep. If the monitor is sleeping, a finger on the Touch ID button will instantly wake the monitor.


The past two weeks have been great, no complaints at all. I think it’s a great investment, especially for content creators and professionals. If you’re an average user, don’t buy the Mac Studio. Apple’s M1 line-up, the Mac mini, MacBook Air, M1 iMac, are great options at great price-points. The monitor recommendation, that’s a difficult decision and it’s based on your want and needs.


Well, I hope that I provided some information that would help you make a decision on whether you should buy the Mac Studio or the Display. I will soon post my video covering this review so if you enjoy watching tech YouTuber, check out my channel. I would really appreciate a like and click the subscribe button, and give me comment - let me know where you stand. Do you like the Studio Duo? Or is it a waste of money and you’re going to wait for the new M2 processors?


Take care everyone.


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