The Apple Studio Display has only just been announced, but the monitor could soon be succeeded by a 'Pro' version with mini LED tech, according to one prominent leaker.
Display analyst Ross Young (opens in new tab) stated on Twitter than a mini LED version of Apple's new prosumer monitor, possibly called the 'Studio Display Pro', could arrive as early as June.
Apparently, the leaker has "confirmed it with multiple companies in their supply chain" and that "production has already started on the panel for the new display". That June release date would, of course, likely mean a launch at WWDC 2022.
Still expecting a 27” MiniLED display from Apple in June. Guess it might be a Studio Display Pro…Have confirmed it with multiple companies in their supply chain…March 10, 2022
While the arrival of a 27-inch Studio Display Pro just three months after the Studio Display might seem unlikely, it also wouldn't be a huge surprise. Mini LED tech, which is also found in TVs, is expected to be the future of high-end monitors.
The Apple Studio Display does also lack some features that many pro creatives would appreciate, including HDR support and speedier 120Hz refresh rates. Apple is no stranger to mini LED tech, either, with its pricier Pro Display XDR packing such a panel, along with its latest MacBook Pro and iPads.
But the arrival of a mini LED-equipped Studio Display is far from a certainty. The Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo (opens in new tab) threw some uncertainty on the claims, but stating on Twitter that "Apple may not launch new mini-LED products this year due to cost concerns".
While the Apple Studio Display is still only up for pre-order (ahead of a shipping date of March 18), it looks like we won't have to wait long to find out if it will indeed be joined by that rumored higher-end sibling.
Analysis: There's room for a Studio Display Pro
Apple's current monitor lineup consists of two wildly varying options – the aging Pro Display XDR ($4,999 / £4,599 / AU$8,499) and the new Studio Display ($1,599 / £1,499 AU$2,499). In theory, this means there is definitely a gap for a Studio Display Pro – particularly one that fills in a few of the feature gaps left by its new sibling.
While the Apple Studio Display isn't cheap, it also isn't exorbitantly priced considering the tech it packs in, which includes a six-speaker sound system with spatial audio, a three-mic array and 12MP ultrawide camera. The 5K display panel itself, though, isn't a radical step up from existing rivals, which is perhaps why it has a relatively sensible price tag.
Mini LED tech is the future, though, and Apple has shown an increasing willingness to use it in most of its lineup. The tech's smaller diodes mean more can be packed into a display compared to a standard LCD – and this brings superior brightness, but also more precise backlighting. In other words, potentially OLED-level performance.
For a pro monitor, this would mean impressive contrast and support for HDR video editing, a lack of which has been one of the early criticisms of the Studio Display. In reality, the current Studio Display is aimed more at prosumers, so a Studio Display Pro for high-end professionals would certainly make sense – the only question is where that might leave the Pro Display XDR.
Given the Pro Display XDR is now almost three years old, it could well be the successor to that panel – and it looks like we won't have to wait long to find out.
- Check out our guide to the best monitors for video editing