Damning Pro Display XDR review says that it can't compete with reference monitors

Pro Display Xdr Rear
Pro Display Xdr Rear (Image credit: iMore)

What you need to know

  • Respected display calibrator and reviewer Vincent Teoh turned his attentions to Pro Display XDR.
  • He compared it with Sony's $43,000 BVM-HX310.
  • The result wasn't great for Apple.

There haven't been all that many reviews of Apple's Pro Display XDR. We've seen the odd one, but not many. Now we have another to add to the mix, and it's the one person I've been hoping would get around to Pro Display XDR – display calibrator and reviewer Vincent Teoh.

Teoh has a great YouTube channel where he reviews displays and TVs, with technical analysis married with more subjective reporting. So when he turned his attention to Pro Display XDR I knew things could get interesting. And that's exactly what happened when Teoh compared the display with Sony's $43,000 monitor.

At first, you might think that's unfair. Pro Display XDR might be costly at $4,999, but it's a fraction of the cost of Sony's own reference monitor. But this is the same monitor Apple called out at WWDC when it first announced Pro Display XDR. And it made a big song and dance about the new screen being "the world's best pro display". So, is it?

Well, not according to this review.

Teoh takes us through the display's specifications and even shows us exactly where the 576 local dimming zones are. He uses professional grading equipment to see just how the display's color, contrast, and brightness performs, too. There are highlights, if you pardon the pun. But there aren't enough of them to suggest that this is a real alternative for professional color graders.

But what if you're a YouTuber who wants a display that will let them create HDR content on a relatively small budget? That's a different story.

Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.

Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.