Apple Studio Display: Long Term Review
Apple Studio Display Review

Apple Studio Display: Long Term Review

So I’ve owned the Apple Studio Display for just over two years now. I’ve been using this 5K monitor on a daily basis for all my creative work, and whilst it’s been a solid buy for me, it might not be the best choice for everyone.

In this review I’m going to discuss the positives and negatives of this monitor, what type of user it’s really aimed at, and see if it’s still worth your money in 2024.

Image Quality

So first up the image quality is about as good as it gets for an LCD panel with no local dimming. The 5K resolution makes everything look super sharp and offers pixel perfect scaling for MacOS.

Whilst this isn’t a HDR display, it does have 600 nits of SDR brightness and has excellent colour accuracy right out of the box. You’ll also get colour consistency with your other Apple displays and devices. These attributes make the Studio Display a great solution for all kinds of Mac-based creative work, be it design or photo and video editing.

Black levels are pretty good for an LCD panel, but of course won’t match a Mini LED or OLED in this regard, so the studio display might not be the best choice if you want to watch lots of movies or other content.

I should also point out that I have the base model with the glossy screen finish, which I would definitely recommend, as this helps with perceived contrast and black levels. Only pay extra for the Nano-texture glass if you have a large window directly opposite your desk, and you really need to reduce glare and reflections.

Apple Studio Display Review


In terms of design the Studio Display makes a beautiful centrepiece for any modern desk setup. This monitor has a minimalist industrial design style that is classic Apple. If you care about the aesthetics of your workspace, then the studio display has got you covered.

With brushed silver aluminium and jet black bezels, it also pairs nicely with a MacBook, Mac mini or Studio. Build quality is excellent, this is a super solid display that won’t shake around on your desk.

There simply isn’t another 5K monitor on the market that offers this level of design quality combined with great colour accuracy and perfect integration with your Mac.

Apple Studio Display connections


Connectivity on the Studio Display is fairly limited, so this may be a possible negative for some users. We only get one Thunderbolt port and three USB-C ports.

Sadly there is no HDMI port, so there’s no way to directly connect your chosen games console. Whilst it is possible to connect a games console via a HDMI to USB adapter, that isn’t going to work very well due to audio and frame rate issues.

The Studio Display is really only intended to be paired with Apple Mac computers, so if you want a versatile monitor you can also use for PC or console gaming, then this is not the product for you. I have an OLED TV in my living room that I use for all my movies and gaming, so for me the Studio Display is purely used for my creative work.

You’ll also notice the lack of a power button, the Studio Display automatically turns on when you power up your Mac. Thankfully this has always worked perfectly, having it automatically turn off and on just works, it also auto-wakes instantly from sleep mode.

Unlike many third-party monitors, the Studio Display will integrate seamlessly with your Mac.

Apple Studio Display Review

Speakers & Microphone

So the built-in speakers are another real positive for the Studio Display, offering the best sound I’ve heard from a monitor or computer. Sure they won’t beat a decent pair of external speakers, but they should be more than good enough for most people.

I did previously have a HomePod Mini in my office, but I got rid of that as the sound quality offered wasn’t any better than the Studio Display.

The built-in microphone is perfectly usable for video and audio calls, but if you’re doing voiceovers or streaming, then I’d still recommend investing in a dedicated external mic.

Apple Studio Display Review

Still Worth It?

So to conclude is the Studio Display still worth it in 2024? Well if you’re a Mac-based creative, I’d say it definitely is.

Sure the price tag is fairly high, but no other 5K monitor on the market offers the same combination of image quality, design, colour accuracy and seamless integration with MacOS.

I also appreciate the fact the Studio Display has excellent built-in audio, which alleviates the need for any external speakers, so I’m left with a clean looking Mac setup that can handle all my creative work.

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