As an avid Apple product enthusiast, I have been eagerly awaiting the release of the newest MacBook Pro. When I heard that it might have a 4K display, I was ecstatic. But, after doing some research, I’ve come to the conclusion that this is not the case. In this blog post, I’ll be exploring the pros and cons of the MacBook Pro, and sharing with you the tips and tricks I used to solve my dilemma and the other solutions I discovered.
The newest 16-inch (2021) MacBook Pro’s screen isn’t native 4K yet. It has a screen resolution of 3456 x 2234 which falls just a bit short of 4K. However, there are still ways to view 4K media with your MacBook Pro.
Keep reading to find out more about these techniques so you can successfully enjoy viewing your media in 4K.
What Is 4K?
4K describes the resolution of your screen or the media you’re viewing. It refers to the number of pixels that are displayed. The dominant standard for 4K has a size of 3840 x 2160. With this resolution, you’d get an aspect ratio of 16:9.
This means that 4K monitors and media have columns made up of 3,840 pixels from left to right, and columns of 2,160 pixels up and down. So, while the 16-inch MacBook Pro exceeds this in height, it does not meet the standard in width.
4K resolution, also known as Ultra High Definition, allows for sharper and more detailed images. 4K will also give you deeper colors that you wouldn’t get at lower resolutions.
What is the MacBook Pro’s Liquid Retina Display?
According to Apple, their devices’ Liquid Retina displays have such a high density of pixels that you won’t even be able to tell them apart when looking at your screen from a normal distance.
The 16-inch MacBook Pro has 254 pixels per inch and can support one billion colors. Liquid Retina displays are supposed to look smoother and more natural compared to non-Retina displays, as they’re made using LCD (Liquid Crystal Display) technology.
How to Change the Resolution of the MacBook Pro’s Display?
After purchasing a new MacBook Pro, its display is automatically set to 1080p as the default. This is so that applications still appear to be the same size as they did in older models and it’s called display scaling. Basically, the interface looks the same, just much sharper because of the increase in pixels.
If you don’t like how your display looks in the default setting, you can change the resolution using the following steps:
- From the Apple menu, click on System Preferences.
- Click on Displays.
- Under Resolution, select Scaled instead of Default for Display.
- From there, you can select any of the options available.
Opting for lower resolutions such as 1080p will show you larger texts and objects for easier viewing. Higher resolutions will make apps and windows smaller so you can have more space to work with.
How Can I Play 4K Videos on the MacBook Pro?
So you’re watching a YouTube video and you can’t see the 4K or 2160p option while changing the video’s resolution. Here are some steps you can take if you’re using Safari:
- Click on Safari and choose Preferences.
- Go to Advanced and check the Show Develop menu box.
- In the Develop drop-down menu, click on Experimental Features. Make sure no video is playing so you can click on the options.
- You’ll want to pick the following options: HDR Media Capabilities, VP9 SW decoder on battery, and VP9 decoder.
- Restart Safari and 4K should be available now.
If you want to view videos in HDR, go to your System Preferences and click on Battery. Turn off the “Optimize video streaming while on battery” option. Restart Safari again and you should be able to watch videos in 4K HDR now.
Can the MacBook Pro Support 4K External Monitors?
If you need extra screens for your workspace or simply want to hook up your laptop to the TV, you can do that with your MacBook Pro using a USB-C or HDMI cable.
How Many Monitors Can the MacBook Pro Support?
Your MacBook Pro can support up to two external displays with 6K resolution with an Apple M1 Pro chip, or up to three 6K monitors and one 4K monitor with an Apple M1 Max chip. You can then view your screen in higher resolutions.
How to Organize Multiple Monitors?
If you want to arrange your multiple displays, you can go to your Settings and choose Displays. From there, you can set your main display as well as adjust the resolution for each of them.
What’s the Best Monitor for the MacBook Pro?
The best monitor for your MacBook Pro would be the Apple Studio Display which has a 5K resolution. They are extremely compatible and will maximize both devices’ features.
The MacBook Pro has a stunning display that’s so close to the 4K standard. Its Retina display technology allows for smooth and clear images and it’s a vast improvement from their older models.
This computer is also able to support multiple external monitors that have up to 6K resolution so you’ll probably never be found lacking in options.
Read more: does 4k work on any TV?