M3 MacBook Air Supports More External Displays Than M3 MacBook Pro

If you frequently work with external displays, it's worth noting that Apple's just-announced M3 MacBook Air models support two external displays – one more than the 14-inch MacBook Pro with the same M3 chip.

Apple MacBook Air 2 up hero 240304 feature
Launched last October, the 14-inch MacBook Pro with M3 chip simultaneously supports one external display with up to 6K resolution at 60Hz.

In contrast, both the 13-inch and 15-inch MacBook Air with M3 chip support one external display with up to 6K resolution at 60Hz, and two external displays with up to 5K resolution at 60Hz when the laptop lid is closed, also known as clamshell mode.

Given that the machines use identical chips, it could be that the additional external display support on the MacBook Airs has been made at the software level. If so, there would seem to be no reason that it could not be added to the M3 MacBook Pro in a future software update. However, it could also be a hardware-based change, and we might not know for sure until a teardown is performed on the new laptops.

The new M3-powered MacBook Air models start from $1,099 and can be pre-ordered on Apple's website, with availability beginning on Friday, March 8. The 14-inch MacBook Pro with M3 chip starts at $1,599.

Related Forums: MacBook Air, MacBook Pro

Top Rated Comments

oofio2461 Avatar
6 weeks ago
Tim, isn't the "Pro" model supposed to be better than the "Air" model? I think you need one of these,
Score: 18 Votes (Like | Disagree)
coffeemilktea Avatar
6 weeks ago
One 6K display, or two 5K displays? I think the real question is how many cheap 1080p displays can I hook up to this? :p
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)
vertsix Avatar
6 weeks ago

Tim, isn't the "Pro" model supposed to be better than the "Air" model? I think you need one of these,

This image right here is the stark contrast of what Apple used to be versus the complicated mess it is now with the product lines.
Score: 12 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Onimusha370 Avatar
6 weeks ago
Yeah this is the real headline from today. What’s going on with the M3 MacBook Pro? A lot of people will have been upsold to an M3 Pro for extra display support. I’d feel pretty crappy for the M3 MBP buyers if a software update doesn’t enable this.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
rorydaredking Avatar
6 weeks ago
They are b*******

We all knew it, but to release the same machine in a thinner shell and enable more displays is just a complete piss take. Unless of course they release a firmware/OS update to enable it on the 14 inch too.

My first gen retina MBP ran 3 external displays, it's a farce that they claim their state of the art SoC, worlds best blah blah blah doesn't support 2. And of course now it does support 2.

Oh dear it gets worse. 2 displays only with lid closed. They really take the biscuit.
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
MayaUser Avatar
6 weeks ago
Since its the same SoC, apple could allow the M3 Mbp with the lid closed to supp also 2 external displays
Score: 8 Votes (Like | Disagree)

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