Studio Display Supports 5th-Gen iPad Air, But Not the 4th-Gen or the iPad Mini 6 [Updated]
According to Apple, the new 27-inch 5K Studio Display supports a range of Macs going back to 2016 MacBook Pro models, but its compatibility with iPads is notably limited to the 11-inch iPad Pro, 12.9-inch iPad Pro (third-generation and later), and the new fifth-generation iPad Air.
This limitation has left some Apple users wondering why other iPad models with USB-C like the fourth-generation iPad Air and latest iPad mini aren't compatible with the Studio Display. Basically, it comes down to data throughput.
The iPad Pro models supported by the Studio Display feature USB-C with 10Gbps throughput (also known as USB 2.1 Gen 2), whereas the fourth-generation iPad Air and iPad mini 6 include a USB 3.1 Gen 1 5Gbps USB-C connection. This connectivity standard supports a single external display with up to 4K resolution at 30Hz.
By contrast, the new iPad Air uses a USB 3.1 Gen 2 connector, which doubles its data throughput compared to the model it replaces, matching the USB 2.1 Gen 2 (10Gbps) of the compatible iPad Pro models. Hence these devices are able to support the Studio Display's output.
It's unclear at present whether connecting an unsupported USB-C iPad would output a degraded picture or simply nothing at all, but suffice to say, customers should heed Apple's compatibility list if they want to ensure a fully functional experience with the new display.
Studio Display specs list only latest iPad Air as supported, even though previous model had USB-C too. Other USB-C-based models *are* supported, like the earlier 11” and 12.9” iPad Pro. Misprint, or is there some technical reason the A14-equipped iPad can’t when an A12X iPad can? — Steve Troughton-Smith (@stroughtonsmith) March 8, 2022
Customers can order the Studio Display starting now through Apple's online store, with availability starting March 18, although delivery dates for both the new Mac Studio and its accompanying Studio Display have begun to slip well into April.
In the U.S., the Studio Display is priced at $1,599 with a tilt-adjustable stand and at $1,999 with a tilt- and height-adjustable stand. The monitor can also be configured with nano-texture glass and/or a VESA mount adapter.