Mac Studio review roundup: Incredible speed, that not everybody needs

Initial reviewes of the Mac Studio are here

AppleInsider may earn an affiliate commission on purchases made through links on our site.

The first reviews of Apple's Mac Studio are starting to appear, with the new machine getting praised for its speed, on top of questions about who it's for.

First announced at the Apple event on March 8, the Mac Studio starts at $1,999 - although certain configurations are already available for up to $400 less. The first ones should arrive with customers on March 18, although one arrived early.

Just ahead of the official delivery date, the first reviews of the Mac Studio have been released. Coming from a mix of technology and news journalists, YouTubers, and professionals, the reviews consistently show up the same points.

Mac Studio desktop computer

Apple Mac Studio

The 2022 Mac Studio can be configured with the M1 Max chip -- or the brand-new, high-end M1 Ultra chip. The latter supports up to 128GB of RAM.
Coupon at Adorama

Use coupon code APINSIDER with this pricing link in the same browsing session.

The Six Colors review says the Mac Studio "fills a very specific ecological niche to perfection." Apple went with function over form by offering ports in the front of the device and plenty of ports in the back. While those who are satisfied by the M1 will never need this computer, people who have been waiting for an option between the Mac mini and Mac Pro finally have one.

Wired describes the Mac Studio as "a near-perfect middle ground" for those seeking a desktop for creative work. The reviewer is surprised by the number of ports and is happy that there is no need for dongles to attach accessories. And, the performance of the Mac Studio leaves them asking what the point of the Mac Pro is.

There are plenty of port options for the Mac Studio
There are plenty of port options for the Mac Studio

Engadget praises Apple for finally offering a desktop that can go toe-to-toe with PC workstations under $5,000. The headphone jack placement in the back isn't ideal, and the Magic Keyboard and Mouse leave a lot to be desired. However, they say if you want a powerful Mac desktop and are fine with the lack of upgradability, the Mac Studio will serve you well for years.

Tom's Guide calls the Mac Studio "expensive for what you get, especially at the high end." It is a great Mac for creatives, families, and students since it has more power than the Mac mini for less money than the Mac Pro.

YouTube producer iPhonedo put a maxed-out Mac Studio with M1 Ultra to the test. Scrubbing through RAW 8K video produced no noticeable lag and the fans were never audible during use. He passed an 85GB ProRES video file through Compressor and what took the M1 Max MacBook Pro four and a half hours took the Mac Studio with M1 Ultra only two and a half hours.

Early reviews of the Studio Display were also released early Thursday. Many praised the quality display, though the price is still high depending on your needs.

The Mac Studio fills a gap in Apple's desktop lineup. It also raises the question, though, of how to decide which desktop Mac to buy.