iPad Air 4 and iPad Mini 6 Do Not Support Apple’s Studio Display [Update]

BY Chandraveer Mathur

Published 9 Mar 2022

Studio Display

Apple’s new standalone Studio Display was launched at the Peek performance event on March 8. It boasts compatibility with a wide range of Macs going as far back as the 2016 MacBook Pro models. On the downside, iPad users don’t stand to benefit much from the Apple Studio Display because of the monitor’s limited compatibility.

Apple’s new Studio display makes a strong case for itself as an ideal premium standalone monitor. It has a 27-inch display with a 5K resolution. However, compatibility with the iPad lineup is somewhat limited. It will only work with the new iPad Air 5, the 11-inch iPad Pro, and the third-generation 12.9-inch iPad Pro or newer models.

If you’re wondering why the Studio Display’s compatibility with iPads is so limited, let us explain. It all boils down to bandwidth. The supported iPad Pro models sport USB-C ports with 10Gbps throughput because they use the USB 3.1 Gen 2 standard. On the other hand, the unsupported models such as the iPad Mini 6 and iPad Air 4 have a 5Gbps bandwidth on their USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type-C ports. The latter specification can only be used to drive a single external 4K monitor at 30Hz.

Like the iPad Pros, the new iPad Air 5 features a USB 3.1 Gen 2 port that offers 10Gbps data throughput — twice as much as the Gen 1 standard. Thanks to this, the new iPad Air can drive Apple’s Studio Display.


Presently, it isn’t clear if the unsupported iPads would be capable of driving the Studio Display with slightly worse picture quality or if they simply won’t work. So, if you want to pair a Studio Display with an iPad, make sure you have one of the compatible iPads for now.

Apple is already accepting pre-orders for the Studio Display priced at $1,599 with the included stand. You can buy it with a tilt and height-adjustable stand for an additional $400. Apple’s anti-reflection Nano-texture glass is a $300 add-on.

Update: Studio Display Works with Unsupported iPads at Lower Resolution

Apple told MacRumors that its 5K Studio Display will operate at less than half its maximum resolution if it is connected to an unsupported iPad. The display output will be downscaled to 1440p or 2K resolution to account for the lesser data throughput that the USB-C ports of the incompatible iPads offer.