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best monitors mac mini - cover

Best Monitor For Mac Mini of 2024 (inc. M1, M2 & M2 Pro Mac Mini)

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If you’re looking for the best Mac compatible monitor for the Mac Mini, here we look at the best external display for the Mac Mini of 2024 including for the latest Apple Silicon M1 & M2 chip models.

The Mac Mini is a favorite with many graphic designers, video editors, gamers and music producers on a budget because it’s one of the cheapest Macs on the market.

In fact we still think the M2 Mac Mini is the best budget Mac on the market in 2024.

Apple even dropped the price of the new 2023 M2 Mac Mini by $100 compared to the previous M1 Mac Mini making it even more attractive.

However, since the Mac Mini doesn’t come with a display included, you need to buy an external one separately.

In our extensive testing and research, we found the brilliant new 32 inch BenQ PD3225U is the best display for the Mac Mini of 2024.

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1. BenQ PD3225U 32 inch 4K Monitor

4K 32 inch BenQ PD3225U

Although it costs almost twice as much as the cheapest Mac Mini, we think the superb BenQ PD3225U is the best monitor for the Mac Mini of 2024.

BenQ has gone the extra mile to make its latest monitors as Mac friendly as possible and the new BenQ PD3225U simply “works” with Macs seamlessly compared to many others we tried.

The PD3225U is an upgrade on the older 4K 32 inch BenQ PD3220U but with much greater brightness (400 nits compared to 250 nits), deeper blacks and greater color depth than its predecessor.

In our review of it, one thing that really stood out is the way BenQ has calibrated it to work instantly with Macs thanks to its “M-Book mode”.

Although this is designed to calibrate with MacBooks, it works just as well when calibrating it with any Mac including the Mac Mini.

If you’ve got an Apple keyboard connected to your Mac Mini, it also allows you to use the brightness controls from it to adjust the brightness of the monitor itself.

For designers and photographers using a Mac Mini, BenQ’s PD3225U is easily one of the best displays for editing images due to the crystal clear sharpness and color accuracy of its images.

This is also due to BenQ’s clever ColorTone software which allows you to fine tunes the colors with a little help from ColorTone.

The PD3225U supports a DCI-P3 99% color gamut so it’s suitable for Pros working with Adobe RGB profiled images and RAW photos which covers Rec BT 709.

The pixel density of the BenQ PD3225U is a bit low at just 140 ppi but its really hard to discern this even compared to monitors with higher pixel density.

Apart from all this, there are lots of connectivity options including two Thunderbolt 3 ports, USB-C ports, HDMI and DisplayPort to connect to your Mac Mini.

The Thunderbolt ports also enable you to “daisy-chain” multiple monitors together if you want.

There’s also an external HotKey puck to control the monitor with, KVM switch, ability to hot-swap color profiles and display two color profiles at once.

There are internal speakers in the BenQ PD3225U and although we’d recommend getting some external ones for a Mac Mini, they suffice as a basic speaker system too.

We even found it wasn’t a bad display for gaming on either although at 60Hz, it’s not really designed for that.

The BenQ PD3225U is an excellent choice for Mac Mini owners and you can check out our full BenQ PD3225U review for more.

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Pros:

  • Mac mode designed for connecting seamlessly to Macs
  • Fast user interface access via Hotkey Puck
  • Amazing color depth and blacks thanks to wide P3 color gamut
  • Thunderbolt 3 ports for daisy chaining other monitors
  • Control brightness from your Mac keyboard
  • Excellent ColorTone software
  • Lots of other port connections

Cons:

  • Internal speaker quality is poor
  • No integrated webcam
  • Only 4K resolution

2. LG Monitor 27MD5KL-B Ultrafine 27″

best alternative apple studio display for mac mini

If you want a cheaper alternative to the Apple Studio Display for your Mac Mini, then look no further than the 27 inch 5K LG 27MD5KL-B UltraFine.

The LG 27MD5KL-B UltraFine 27 inch monitor is one of the few high pixel 5K 27 inch monitors on the market outside of the Apple Studio Display and is a great alternative to it.

The LG 27MD5KL-B Ultrafine 27 inch is a 5K Ultra High Definition (UHD) monitor with 5120 x 2880 Resolution and a 16:9 Aspect Ratio.

The 27 inch LG UltraFine 5K display supports up to 218 pixels per inch (PPI) which is the same as the Apple Studio display although only has 500 nits of brightness which is 100 less than the Apple Studio Display.

The LG Ultrafine is a flat-Panel IPS monitor with support for DCI-P3 99% color gamut.

The monitor also features both a built-in camera and a speaker which is another plus for Mac Mini owners.

In terms of connectivity, there are three Thunderbolt 3 ports which can display 5K video, audio and data simultaneously from a Mac Mini. You can also use these for daisy-chaining additional monitors too.

On the downside, the LG 27MD5KL-B Ultrafine 27 inch monitor only has a 60Hz refresh rate but it still performs very well fine for gaming and fast moving media such as when video editing.

You can read our full LG 27MD5KL-B 5K UltraFine 27″ monitor review for more.

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Pros:

  • 5K quality resolution
  • Wide P3 gamut
  • 218 PPI
  • Built-in web camera
  • Built-in speakers
  • Supports volume and brightness control from Mac
  • Excellent alternative to the Apple Studio Display

Cons:

  • Internal speaker quality is poor
  • Webcam quality isn’t great
  • Doesn’t support High Dynamic Range (HDR)

3. LG 34BK95U-W UltraFine 34”

best ultrawide monitor mac mini

The 5K LG UltraFine 34 inch monitor is the best ultrawide monitor for the Mac Mini and features stunning 5K resolution and 163 pixels per inch (ppi)

LG monitors are some of the best displays you can get for Macs and Apple even helped LG develop the UltraFine series as it contains a very similar panel to the 27 inch 5K iMac display.

You can get full 5K 5120 x 2160 resolution (also known as 5K2K) with the LG 34BK95-W including when connected to the M2 Mac Mini.

One advantage of the 5K LG UltraFine 34 inch monitor is that it supports High Dynamic Range (HDR) which, like Dolby Vision, makes bright and dark parts of an image incredibly intense and contrasted.

It can of course also easily handle 4K video and the wide viewing angles make it an excellent choice for those in desktop publishing or video editing.

You can change the tilt and height on the stand that comes with the LG34BK95U-W UltraFine but you can only add swivel with a VESA stand mount connection.

In terms of ports, apart from the standard HDMI port there’s a dedicated Thunderbolt 3 port with 85W of power which offers DisplayPort Alt Mode.

There are also an additional 3 USB-C ports so there’s no shortage of connection options for the Mac Mini.

The refresh rate of the LG34BK95U-W UltraFine is 60hz but that’s about as good as you’ll find in an external monitor that’s compatible with Macs and good enough for most gaming.

There are even speakers in the LG UltraFine 34 inch 5K but the sound is poor and it’s best to connect some external speakers to it.

There is no integrated webcam in the LG UltraFine 34 inch either although you can connect one via USB-C or even use a digital camera as a webcam.

You can read our full LG 34BK95U-W 34 inch 5K monitor review for more.

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Pros:

  • 5K resolution with 5K2K support
  • 163 ppi
  • 3 USB-C ports plus HDMI and Thunderbolt port
  • Huge screen estate
  • 3 year LG guarantee
  • Supports HDR

Cons:

  • Sound or brightness can’t be controlled from Mac keyboard
  • Swivel requires mounting a stand
  • No integrated webcam

4. Apple Studio Display

best apple monitor for mac mini

It’s hard to avoid the fact that the 27 inch 5K Apple Studio Display is the best Apple monitor for the Mac Mini.

It’s made by Apple, it works seamlessly with Macs and has the best color calibration of any monitor on the market.

The Apple Studio Display was released in March 2022 by Apple to go with the amazing new Mac Studio.

Although it’s not cheap at $1,499 it offers a much cheaper alternative to the Apple 32-inch Pro Display XDR which costs an eye watering $4,999.

The Apple Studio Display supports a stunningly high 218 PPI and offers 5K2K resolution with a maximum resolution of 5120 x 2880.

This makes it easily the best 27 inch 5K monitor for the Mac Mini outside of the 5K 27 inch LG UltraFine.

However unlike the 5K 27 inch LG UltraFine, the Apple Studio Display has features only Macs can use too such as an automatic sRGB mode which calibrates color perfectly for your applications which makes it a dream for graphic design.

The Apple Studio Display also has a 12 MegaPixel Ultra Wide camera with Center Stage thanks to a powerful internal A13 Bionic chip.

It also has a music studio quality three-mic array and a six speaker sound system with Spatial Audio which makes it definitely the best monitor for music production on a Mac.

Finally, the Apple Studio Display also comes with a tilt and height adjustable stand although you’ll have to add a VESA mount adapter if you want to add swivel to it.

If money is no object and you need a monitor with perfect color calibration and compatibility with a Mac, you can’t do better than the Apple Studio Display.

If the price is out of your budget, you can also check out our guide to the best Apple Studio Display alternatives for some cheaper options.

For more you can check out our full Apple Studio Display review.

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Pros:

  • The best Apple display for the Mac Mini
  • Supports 5K
  • 3 Thunderbolt ports
  • Automatic sRGB color calibration
  • 12MP ultra-wide camera
  • Three-way microphone
  • 6 internal speakers

Cons:

  • Price
  • Maximum size is 27 inch

5. Dell UltraSharp U2720Q 27 Inch 4K UHD

best budget monitor for mac mini

The 27 inch Dell UltraSharp U2720Q is a great all round external display and the best budget monitor for the Mac Mini.

We think it’s certainly the best monitor for the Mac Mini under $500 although the price may fluctuate a touch above that at times.

The 4K display looks great connected to a Mac Mini and makes it ideal for editing photos, watching films, designing and more.

Unusually for a monitor in this price range, it supports HDR (High Dynamic Range) which not even Apple’s own Apple Studio Display supports.

HDR, like Dolby Vision, makes bright and dark parts of an image incredibly intense and contrasted with whiter whites and blacker blacks.

The Dell UltraSharp U2720Q has two USB-C ports and one HDMI port so you can connect it easily to any Mac Mini although there’s no Thunderbolt port.

The Dell UltraSharp U2720Q has a stand that can swivel, pivot and adjust vertically which is another bonus as many external monitor stands don’t offer such flexibility.

If you need an Ethernet connection for your monitor, you should also check out the newer Dell UltraSharp U2723QE which is an upgraded version of this model and allows you to connect the display directly via Ethernet to the Mac Mini.

You can read our full Dell UltraSharp U22720Q review for more.

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Pros:

  • Lots of ports for connectivity
  • Great crisp 4K quality images
  • Excellent color gamut
  • Excellent value for money
  • Supports HDR

Cons:

  • Brightness controls are poor
  • No internal speakers
  • No internal webcam
  • No Thunderbolt port

6. Asus ProArt PA279CV Display 4K

best monitor for artists mac mini

If you need the best in color accuracy outside of Apple’s displays but are on a budget then the Asus ProArt Display is designed with photographers, graphic designers and drawing tablets in mind.

The Asus ProArt Display is available in sizes ranging from 27-inch to 34-inch and the Asus ProArt PA279CV supports 4K HDR UHD (3840 x 2160 resolution).

It also has an LED backlight display with an IPS 178° wide viewing angle panel.

The color accuracy is one of the best things about the Asus ProArt Display with a wide color gamut of 709 and Delta E < 2 color accuracy.

There’s also 2 HDMI 2.0 and a USB 3.1 hub to connect the Asus ProArt Display to a Mac Mini.

For video editors or gamers, there’s also Adaptive-Sync technology that adjusts automatically between 40Hz to 60Hz for animated content or fast action footage.

Asus also include ProArt Presets and ProArt Palettes that allow you to configure and save color settings depending on what you’re working on.

For more check out our full Asus ProArt Display 4K review.

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Pros:

  • Excellent color accuracy for this price range
  • 4K HDR support
  • Good value for money
  • High brightness levels
  • Available between 27 to 34 inches
  • Lots of presets for artists and graphic designers

Cons:

  • No real Adobe RGB support
  • Not suitable for fast gaming

7. Samsung 34 inch CJ791 Curved

best curved monitor for mac mini

The Samsung 34-Inch CJ791 Ultrawide Curved Monitor was the first curved monitor with Thunderbolt 3 ports and we think it’s the best curved monitor for the Mac Mini.

It’s mainly designed for gaming with an incredibly high 100Hz refresh rate.

There are two Thunderbolt 3 ports which means you can connect not only a Mac Mini but also other Thunderbolt peripherals such as external Thunderbolt storage drives.

The Samsung CJ791 also supports daisy chaining Thunderbolt devices meaning you can connect them all together meaning you only need one Thunderbolt cable connected to your monitor.

The Samsung 34-Inch CJ791 Ultrawide Curved Monitor also includes DP, HDMI and USB ports.

The speakers in the CJ791 are also better than most. It includes built-in 7-watt stereo speakers which are ideal for watching videos, films and gaming.

The curved 34 inch widescreen monitor is ultrawide which gives you the feel of two monitors in one in terms of screen estate.

It also has a contrast ratio of 3:1 compared to the 1:1 ratio of many monitors in this price range which gives crisp, clear contrast.

You can even enjoy Picture-in-Picture by displaying two sources of data on the display by resizing one of the sources up to 25% which you can place anywhere.

Initially you may find that text looks a little pixelated and jagged on the Samsung CJ791 Ultrawide Curved Monitor but if you switch Game Mode to “Always On”, it seems to fix the problem.

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Pros:

  • 2 Thunderbolt ports
  • Curved 34 inch display feels huge
  • Good quality internal speakers
  • Supports Picture-in-Picture
  • 100Hz refresh rate ideal for gaming
  • VESA mountable
  • Supports daisy-chaining Thunderbolt devices

Cons:

  • Picture in Picture tricky to configure
  • Large text can look pixelated without Game Mode on
  • No integrated webcam
  • QHD not as high quality as 5K

8. Samsung ViewFinity S9

best samsung monitor for the mac mini

The Samsung ViewFinity S9 is probably the most similar display to the Apple Studio Display in our list and is our pick as the best Samsung monitor for the Mac Mini.

Samsung has clearly positioned the ViewFinity S9 as an alternative to Apple’s Studio Display and it’s pretty impressive.

The Samsung ViewFinity S9 looks very similar to the Apple Studio Display although the price is also the same at $1,599 which is the same as the base model Apple Display.

The specs are almost identical as the Apple Studio Display with a 5120 x 2880 display and a wide 10-bit color gamut that covers 99% of the DCI-P3 spectrum.

The ViewFinity S9 also has 218 PPI which is the same as the Apple Studio Display and ideal for reproducing the best image quality when connected to a Mac.

There’s also HDR600 support to improve shadows and highlights, support for 600 nits of brightness, a 4K webcam, one Thunderbolt 4 port, three USB-C ports and a mini Display port.

The display also has its own remote control with a control joystick meaning the S9 can easily be used as a SmartTV too with preinstalled apps including Netflix, Disney+ and YouTube.

Other nice touches in the S9 include wireless Bluetooth connectivity for speakers, keyboards and game controllers including support for AirPlay.

The sound system features two 5W stereo speakers and there’s also split screen support with Samsung MultiView, WiFi connectivity and Tizen TV OS built-in.

You can also adjust the height of the stand on the ViewFinity S9 – if you want to do the same thing on the Apple Studio Display expect to pay an extra $400 for an adjustable stand.

It’s not exactly the cheapest display for the Mac Mini but it’s definitely one of the best.

You can check out our look at the Samsung ViewFinity S9 vs Apple Studio Display for more.

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Pros:

  • Same specifications as Apple Studio Display
  • 218 PPI
  • 5K resolution
  • HDR600 support
  • Looks similar to the Apple Studio Display
  • Remote control and Smart TV functionality

Cons:

  • Big external power supply
  • Price is the same as the Apple Studio Display

Best Monitors For Mac Mini Compared

Here’s a side-by-side comparison of the monitors we reviewed including pricing.

BenQ PD3225U 32 Inch 4K IPS Black UHD Thunderbolt Monitor for MacBook, AQCOLOR, 98% P3, 100% sRGB & Rec.709, DeltaE ≤2, Factory Calibration, USB-C 85W, USB Hub, Daisy Chain, KVM Switch
LG 27MD5KL-B 27 Inch UltraFine 5K (5120 x 2880) IPS Display with macOS Compatibility, DCI-P3 99% Color Gamut and Thunderbolt 3 Port, Black
LG 34BK95U-W UltraFine 34" 21:9 5K 2K (5120 x 2160) Nano IPS LED UltraWide Monitor, 600 cd/m² HDR, Thunderbolt 3 / USB Type-C Inputs Black
Apple Studio Display - Standard Glass - VESA Mount Adapter
Dell UltraSharp U2720Q 27 Inch 4K UHD (3840 x 2160) LED Backlit LCD IPS USB-C Monitor (7GZ651)
ASUS ProArt Display 27” 4K HDR Professional Monitor (PA279CRV) - IPS, UHD (3840 x 2160), 99% DCI-P3/Adobe RGB, ΔE < 2, Calman Verified, USB-C PD 96W, DisplayPort, Daisy-Chain, Height Adjustable
BenQ PD3225U 32 Inch 4K IPS Black UHD Thunderbolt Monitor for MacBook, AQCOLOR, 98% P3, 100% sRGB & Rec.709, DeltaE ≤2, Factory Calibration, USB-C 85W, USB Hub, Daisy Chain, KVM Switch
LG 27MD5KL-B 27 Inch UltraFine 5K (5120 x 2880) IPS Display with macOS Compatibility, DCI-P3 99% Color Gamut and Thunderbolt 3 Port, Black
LG 34BK95U-W UltraFine 34" 21:9 5K 2K (5120 x 2160) Nano IPS LED UltraWide Monitor, 600 cd/m² HDR, Thunderbolt 3 / USB Type-C Inputs Black
Apple Studio Display - Standard Glass - VESA Mount Adapter
Dell UltraSharp U2720Q 27 Inch 4K UHD (3840 x 2160) LED Backlit LCD IPS USB-C Monitor (7GZ651)
ASUS ProArt Display 27” 4K HDR Professional Monitor (PA279CRV) - IPS, UHD (3840 x 2160), 99% DCI-P3/Adobe RGB, ΔE < 2, Calman Verified, USB-C PD 96W, DisplayPort, Daisy-Chain, Height Adjustable
Screen Size
32 inch
27 inch
27 inch
27 inch
27 inch
27 inch
Refresh Rate
60Hz
60Hz
60Hz
60Hz
60Hz
60Hz
Pixels Per Inch (ppi)
140
218
218
218
164
163
Resolution
4K 3840 x 2160 pixels
5K2K 5120 x 2880 Pixels
5K2K 5120 x 2880
5K2K 5120 x 2880 Pixels
4K 3480 x 2160
4K 3840 x 2160
Ports
2 Thunderbolt 3 ports, USB-C ports, HDMI, DisplayPort
1 Thunderbolt 3 port, 3 USB-C ports
1 Thunderbolt 3, 3 USB-C
1 Thunderbolt 3 port, 3 USB-C ports
2 USB-C, 1 HDMI, 3 USB-A, DisplayPort
USB-C, 2 HDMI, USB 3.1, DisplayPort
Brightness
400 nits
500 nits
600 nits
600 nits
350 nits
402 nits
Color Support
DCI-P3 99% color gamut
DCI-P3 99% color gamut
One billion colors and P3 wide color
One billion colors & P3 wide color
DCI-P3 99% color gamut
Delta E < 2 color accuracy
Speakers
Yes
Yes
Six speaker surround with spatial audio
Six-speaker sound system with Spatial Audio
No
No
Webcam
No
Yes
12MP webcam with Center Stage support
12MP Ultra Wide camera with Center Stage
No
No
Special Features
Mac mode, HotKey puck, KVM switch
Mac keyboard integrations for controls
Face tracking, studio quality three mic array
Face tracking, Studio-quality three-mic array
Supports HDR, LED Backlight
Color presets, ProArt Palletes
$1,099.99
$1,212.45
$604.55
$1,599.00
$711.98
$419.00
Amazon Prime
-
-
Amazon Prime
-
Amazon Prime
BenQ PD3225U 32 Inch 4K IPS Black UHD Thunderbolt Monitor for MacBook, AQCOLOR, 98% P3, 100% sRGB & Rec.709, DeltaE ≤2, Factory Calibration, USB-C 85W, USB Hub, Daisy Chain, KVM Switch
BenQ PD3225U 32 Inch 4K IPS Black UHD Thunderbolt Monitor for MacBook, AQCOLOR, 98% P3, 100% sRGB & Rec.709, DeltaE ≤2, Factory Calibration, USB-C 85W, USB Hub, Daisy Chain, KVM Switch
Screen Size
32 inch
Refresh Rate
60Hz
Pixels Per Inch (ppi)
140
Resolution
4K 3840 x 2160 pixels
Ports
2 Thunderbolt 3 ports, USB-C ports, HDMI, DisplayPort
Brightness
400 nits
Color Support
DCI-P3 99% color gamut
Speakers
Yes
Webcam
No
Special Features
Mac mode, HotKey puck, KVM switch
$1,099.99
Amazon Prime
LG 27MD5KL-B 27 Inch UltraFine 5K (5120 x 2880) IPS Display with macOS Compatibility, DCI-P3 99% Color Gamut and Thunderbolt 3 Port, Black
LG 27MD5KL-B 27 Inch UltraFine 5K (5120 x 2880) IPS Display with macOS Compatibility, DCI-P3 99% Color Gamut and Thunderbolt 3 Port, Black
Screen Size
27 inch
Refresh Rate
60Hz
Pixels Per Inch (ppi)
218
Resolution
5K2K 5120 x 2880 Pixels
Ports
1 Thunderbolt 3 port, 3 USB-C ports
Brightness
500 nits
Color Support
DCI-P3 99% color gamut
Speakers
Yes
Webcam
Yes
Special Features
Mac keyboard integrations for controls
$1,212.45
-
LG 34BK95U-W UltraFine 34" 21:9 5K 2K (5120 x 2160) Nano IPS LED UltraWide Monitor, 600 cd/m² HDR, Thunderbolt 3 / USB Type-C Inputs Black
LG 34BK95U-W UltraFine 34" 21:9 5K 2K (5120 x 2160) Nano IPS LED UltraWide Monitor, 600 cd/m² HDR, Thunderbolt 3 / USB Type-C Inputs Black
Screen Size
27 inch
Refresh Rate
60Hz
Pixels Per Inch (ppi)
218
Resolution
5K2K 5120 x 2880
Ports
1 Thunderbolt 3, 3 USB-C
Brightness
600 nits
Color Support
One billion colors and P3 wide color
Speakers
Six speaker surround with spatial audio
Webcam
12MP webcam with Center Stage support
Special Features
Face tracking, studio quality three mic array
$604.55
-
Apple Studio Display - Standard Glass - VESA Mount Adapter
Apple Studio Display - Standard Glass - VESA Mount Adapter
Screen Size
27 inch
Refresh Rate
60Hz
Pixels Per Inch (ppi)
218
Resolution
5K2K 5120 x 2880 Pixels
Ports
1 Thunderbolt 3 port, 3 USB-C ports
Brightness
600 nits
Color Support
One billion colors & P3 wide color
Speakers
Six-speaker sound system with Spatial Audio
Webcam
12MP Ultra Wide camera with Center Stage
Special Features
Face tracking, Studio-quality three-mic array
$1,599.00
Amazon Prime
Dell UltraSharp U2720Q 27 Inch 4K UHD (3840 x 2160) LED Backlit LCD IPS USB-C Monitor (7GZ651)
Dell UltraSharp U2720Q 27 Inch 4K UHD (3840 x 2160) LED Backlit LCD IPS USB-C Monitor (7GZ651)
Screen Size
27 inch
Refresh Rate
60Hz
Pixels Per Inch (ppi)
164
Resolution
4K 3480 x 2160
Ports
2 USB-C, 1 HDMI, 3 USB-A, DisplayPort
Brightness
350 nits
Color Support
DCI-P3 99% color gamut
Speakers
No
Webcam
No
Special Features
Supports HDR, LED Backlight
$711.98
-
ASUS ProArt Display 27” 4K HDR Professional Monitor (PA279CRV) - IPS, UHD (3840 x 2160), 99% DCI-P3/Adobe RGB, ΔE < 2, Calman Verified, USB-C PD 96W, DisplayPort, Daisy-Chain, Height Adjustable
ASUS ProArt Display 27” 4K HDR Professional Monitor (PA279CRV) - IPS, UHD (3840 x 2160), 99% DCI-P3/Adobe RGB, ΔE < 2, Calman Verified, USB-C PD 96W, DisplayPort, Daisy-Chain, Height Adjustable
Screen Size
27 inch
Refresh Rate
60Hz
Pixels Per Inch (ppi)
163
Resolution
4K 3840 x 2160
Ports
USB-C, 2 HDMI, USB 3.1, DisplayPort
Brightness
402 nits
Color Support
Delta E < 2 color accuracy
Speakers
No
Webcam
No
Special Features
Color presets, ProArt Palletes
$419.00
Amazon Prime

Can You Use Any Monitor With The Mac Mini?

best monitor m1 mac mini - ports

As long as the monitor has a USB-C/Thunderbolt port (indicated by the lightening bolts) or HDMI port (which almost all displays have at least one of nowadays) it will work with any Mac Mini including the Intel and M1, M2 and M2 Pro Mac Mini.

This means you can use any non Apple monitor with a Mac Mini – it doesn’t have to be the Apple Studio Display.

Thunderbolt and USB-C use the same cables to connect to a Mac Mini and are generally preferable to HDMI for stability, ease of connection and image transfer speeds.

Thunderbolt and USB-C also support 5K displays with a Mac .

If you want to use the monitor with a MacBook Pro too, Thunderbolt and USB-C connections will also charge MacBooks while you use the monitor.

However, the upgraded HDMI 2.1 port in the latest M2 Mac Minis is considerably more powerful than in the previous M1 Mac Mini.

The HDMI 2.0 port in the M1 Mac Mini could only support a maximum of one 4K display at 60Hz but the upgraded HDMI 2.1 port in the M2 and M2 Pro Mac Mini supports one display at up to 8K at 60Hz or one display of 4K at up to 240Hz.

The HDMI port also means that you can easily connect a TV to a Mac Mini and use it as a display too. If the Mac Mini is connected to an Apple TV, you can also connect to a TV to a Mac Mini wirelessly via AirPlay.

Mac Minis also have an Ethernet port which allows you to connect over a network which is supported by some monitors such as the Dell UltraSharp U2723QE.

For more, check out our guide on how to connect a display to a Mac Mini.

How Many Displays Can I Connect To A Mac Mini?

The number of external monitors a Mac Mini can support depends on which model you have.

Here is a breakdown of how many external displays the different models of Mac Mini can support:

M1 Mac Mini:

connect external display mac mini m1

  • Up to two displays: One display up to 6K at 60Hz via a Thunderbolt 4 (USB-C) port and one display up to 4K using the HDMI 2.0 port.

M2 Mac Mini

m2 mac mini external displays

  • Up to two displays: One display up to 6K at 60Hz via a Thunderbolt 4 (USB-C) port one display with up to 5K resolution at 60Hz over Thunderbolt or 4K resolution at 60Hz over HDMI

M2 Pro Mac Mini

m2 pro mac mini external monitors

The M2 Pro Mac Mini supports the following combination of external displays and specifications:

  • Up to three displays: Two displays with up to 6K resolution at 60Hz over Thunderbolt and one display with up to 4K resolution at 60Hz over HDMI.
  • Up to two displays: One display with up to 6K resolution at 60Hz over Thunderbolt and one display with up to 4K resolution at 144Hz over HDMI
  • One display: Up to 8K resolution at 60Hz or 4K resolution at 240Hz over HDMI

If the display you want to connect to your Mac Mini only has a DVI or VGA ouput, you can also connect them to an M1/M2 Mac Mini using an adapter:

The M2 Pro Mac Mini clearly has the best support for external monitors.

There are ways of making the basic M1/M2 chip Macs support more external monitors but it depends on the resolution you need and you’ll require a Thunderbolt Hub, Docking Station or third party device.

Intel Mac Mini:

The Intel Mac Mini supports the following combination of displays:

  • Up to three displays:
    Two displays with 4096-by-2304 (4K) resolution at 60Hz connected via Thunderbolt 3 plus one display with 4096-by-2160 resolution (4K) at 60Hz connected via HDMI
  • Up to two displays:
    One display with 5120-by-2880 (5K) resolution at 60Hz connected via Thunderbolt 3 plus one display with 4096-by-2160 (4K) resolution at 60Hz connected via HDMI

connect external display intel mac mini

Like with the Apple Silicon Mac Minis, if the display you want to connect to only has a DVI or VGA ouput, you can also connect them to an Intel Mac Mini using an adapter.

Note that as of 17th January 2023, Apple only stocks M2 Mac Minis from new.

The M1 Mac Mini and Intel Mac Mini are only available as older refurbished models from Apple or from third party vendors such as Amazon.

Does The Mac Mini Support HDMI 2.1?

The latest M2 Mac Mini supports HDMI 2.1. One of the big upgrades in the new M2 Mac Mini was the addition of the HDMI 2.1 port.

Previously both the Intel Mac Mini and M1 Mac Mini only supported HDMI 2.0.

HDMI 2.0 supports up to 240 Hz when using 1080p resolution, 144 Hz at up to 1440p resolution, and 60 Hz at up to 4K resolution.

HDMI 2.1 supports 120 Hz at up to 4K resolution and 60 Hz at up to 8K resolution. If you use a lower resolution than 4K, HDMI 2.1 can even handle up to 240 Hz.

Can You Use An iMac As A Monitor For The Mac Mini?

If you’ve for an old iMac lying around you can use an iMac as an external display for the Mac Mini – but it’s not as straightforward as it should be.

The latest iMacs support up to 5K resolution which is the same as the Apple Studio Display so in theory, it would make perfect sense to use an old iMac with the Apple Studio.

However, Apple dropped what’s known as Target Display Mode for retina Macs like the iMac back in 2014 which previously allowed you to use an iMac as an external monitor with another Mac.

There are still ways to use an iMac as a monitor but there is no method that supports 5K resolution reliably and our advice is you’re much better off getting a dedicated external monitor.

Speakers & Webcams In External Monitors

If you need integrated speakers and a webcam with your external monitor then by far the best external monitor for Mac Minis with both integrated speakers and a webcam is the Apple Studio Display.

With a 12MP face tracking camera and six high fidelty speakers, there’s simply no monitor on the market that can touch it in terms of webcam and sound.

Most external monitors have very poor integrated speakers and many don’t even have a webcam.

Our advice is to use external speakers with an external monitor and for the best quality webcam images, use a digital camera as a webcam with your Mac Mini.


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