The first reviews have surfaced for Apple’s new Studio Display, and a common finding among reviewers was that the built-in webcam’s image quality ranges from “awesome” anywhere from “old Blackberry” in their hands-on testing.
The studio display houses a 12-megapixel ultra-wide front camera that can be used for FaceTime and Zoom calls. While the camera is a welcome addition compared to the webcam-less Pro Display XDR, the image quality has been criticized by reviewers.
You can understand why I anticipated that the Studio Display’s webcam would be GOAT (greatest ever). With a 12-megapixel camera and A13 Bionic chip, it should be on par with the front-facing camera of the iPhone 11 Pro.
Yet Apple’s camera consistently produced grainy and washed out images. There was so much detail missing in some shots that it reminded me of my old Blackberry’s camera. On the other hand: no one could see my curly hair.
The bad thing is that I have no idea what’s going on with this webcam. Apple has a long history of creating amazing images with its 12-megapixel sensor and A-series chips, and for some reason this thing just looks awful.
In fact, it looks terrible in good light and downright pathetic in low light. I’ve tried connecting it to Mac Studio and on my MacBook Pro running macOS 12.3, and on both machines it produces a grainy, noisy image with almost no detail. I tried it in FaceTime, in Zoom, in Photo Booth, in Quicktime – you name it, it’s the same sad image quality. Turning off the Center Stage feature that follows you around the room doesn’t help. Toggling portrait mode on and off doesn’t help.
In response to inquiries about webcam quality, an Apple spokesperson told both Stern and Patel that Apple had “discovered an issue where the system is not behaving as expected” and that “a software update will improve it.” ” Apple did not specify what “fixes” would be made, and no time frame was provided for the update.
We’ve reviewed both the Studio Display and the Mac Studio for those who want to see both new products practically.