Hi, I am trying to purchase a monitor for a new Mac mini but am not sure how to find one. I cannot afford the studio display, but would still like something comparable, or as close as possible, in the $500-$1,000 range. I wish I could see monitors in person but there are no stores near me that have non-apple monitors hooked up to apple computers. Any advice would be greatly appreciate. Thank you.
I have used Dell and LG monitors with my Mac mini and my MacBook Air, both M1 models.
24“ and a 34“ Ultra Wide models from Dell and a 44“ UHD HDR from LG, have worked perfectly fine with both Macs.
With the Dell Ultra Sharp range, you probably can’t go wrong for a decent monitor at reasonable prices. The LG was cheap for such a big monitor with those features, but the corner cutting shows, I have one at home and one at work, one screen isn’t perfectly straight in the frame and it loses 2 pixels for about 100 pixels at the bottom left of the display. On the Mac, you don’t notice it, but you do on windows 10, because the start menu and the underlining for active applications are slightly affected.
This Aussie has pretty good reviews. Of course he’s not focused specifically on using with Apple, but it might give you someplace to start.
I asked Bing AI
One of the sources linked reckons the next best options after the Studio are the two 5k LG Ultrafines. There’s a 27" (27MD5KL) and an ultrawide (34BK95U-W), both look like they are at the top of your budget.
Any HDMI monitor will work. Right now Dell offers the best bang for your buck.
I just went through this having bought an M2 Mac mini when it was announced last month. After researching the subject I chose an Asus ProArt Display PA279CV 27”. Very disappointing. The USB hub feature did not work with the Mac and the quality of the speakers was poor. I returned the display and bought an Apple Studio Display. Absurdly expensive but the USB C ports work and the sound quality is surprisingly good (although I use a connection to my hi-fi for music).
Nevertheless I have had a problem with the combination of the mini + Display: when the mini wakes from sleep the app windows are reduced in size and moved to the bottom left corner of the screen. Apple have tested both the mini and the Display and found nothing. I am in the process of trying to reproduce the problem when the Display is connected to my M1 MacBook Air so that I can determine whether the issue is the mini or the Display.
If I were not concerned about ports or speakers I would go with the Dell.
Mine settled down after a couple of days. The LG turns on slower than the mini, so I need to turn it on, count to 2, then wake up the Mac. The problem seems to be that the Mac wakes up and asks the monitor what resolution it is working at. If the monitor is still doing its POST and doesn’t reply quick enough, the Mac assumes the worst and resizes everything to be visible on the “smallest” allowed resolution.
Then, half a second or so later, the monitor sends back its connection information and the Mac re-adjusts the screen size, but doesn’t replace the windows to their original position. With the LG, it also failed to signal HDR mode availability in the time allowed, when waking up and I’d often have to turn the display off or switch to another input, and then back again and the Mac would re-poll the monitor and then start outputting HDR signals.
Since I now use the routine of turn on/wake up the monitor, then wait a second, then wake up the Mac, the problem hasn’t cropped up since. I think it just depends on how quick the monitor is at POSTing and replying to the Macs requests.
David, thanks for responding. I see the interchange between the mini and the Display – when I wake the mini from sleep the Display shows a reduced size window in the bottom left which snaps to the full screen in a fraction of a second. It does this with some apps which have been minimized to the Dock, but not all.
I have failed to get my MacBook Air to work with the Display to reproduce the problem. The Display works OK with the Air but after putting the Air to sleep and waiting a few hours I keep finding that the Air has rebooted itself!
There’s a lot going on here, too many moving parts and the tests take too much time – the machine has to sleep for more than 1 hour for the effect to show up. I suspect I’ll just have to live with it which is annoying as this is an expensive set of kit and should work as advertised.