Samsung ViewFinity S9 vs. Apple Studio Display specs compared.

Samsung ViewFinity S9 vs. Apple Studio Display specs compared.

Samsung ViewFinity S9 vs Apple Studio Display: A Battle of Premium Studio Monitors

When Samsung unveiled the ViewFinity S9 studio monitor at CES 2023, it immediately drew comparisons to the Apple Studio Display. Now, several months later, we finally have official pricing and availability details. According to Samsung, customers will be able to purchase the ViewFinity S9 starting in August at a starting price of $1,599.

Specs and Features

Judging by the price and features, it is evident that Samsung has positioned the ViewFinity S9 as a direct competitor to the Apple Studio Display. Both monitors offer a similar 27-inch panel with a 5K resolution and impressive color reproduction capabilities. The ViewFinity S9, however, offers some additional features at a lower cost.

The ViewFinity S9 comes with an additional video port (Mini DisplayPort), a higher resolution webcam, and a matte panel. Apple’s Studio Display charges an extra $300 for the matte panel option. Additionally, the ViewFinity S9 supports Wi-Fi 5, Bluetooth 4.2, and AirPlay, providing seamless integration with compatible Apple products.

Design Comparison

In terms of design, Samsung’s ViewFinity S9 bears a striking resemblance to the Apple Studio Display. Both monitors feature a slim industrial design with a light grey finish. The ViewFinity S9 measures 17mm thick, while the Studio Display is slightly thicker at 19mm. The ViewFinity S9 also boasts a better screen-to-body ratio with smaller bezels, offering a more immersive viewing experience.

Apple has managed to incorporate a built-in power supply into the Studio Display, eliminating the need for an external adaptor, unlike the ViewFinity S9. However, Samsung compensates by bundling a tilt- and height-adjustable stand, as well as offering VESA mounting options. Apple’s Studio Display gives users the option to choose between a standard stand, an adjustable stand, or a VESA mount, but these options come at an additional cost.

When it comes to the webcam, the Studio Display features a built-in 12MP camera with support for Center Stage. On the other hand, the ViewFinity S9 comes with a detachable 4K camera that snaps onto the top of the monitor. Both options provide quality video-conferencing capabilities.

Image Quality and Display

While we haven’t had the opportunity to test both monitors side by side, it is expected that both the ViewFinity S9 and the Studio Display offer excellent image quality. Both monitors feature an IPS panel, but the ViewFinity S9’s matte finish should handle glare better than the Studio Display’s glossy finish. Apple does offer the option to upgrade to Nano-texture glass, but this comes at an additional cost of $300.

Both monitors claim to offer an impressive 600 nits of brightness, more than sufficient for most users. They also support 10-bit color and DCI-P3 gamut. However, the ViewFinity S9 goes a step further with HDR600 support, offering better dynamic range and contrast compared to the Studio Display.

Port Selection and Additional Features

Samsung’s ViewFinity S9 takes the lead in terms of port selection. With a Thunderbolt 4 port, three USB Type-C ports, and a mini DisplayPort, users have greater flexibility in connecting multiple devices simultaneously. Apple’s Studio Display, in contrast, offers a single Thunderbolt 3 port and three USB Type-C ports. The ViewFinity S9 also includes a control joystick for adjusting settings, a feature not found on the Studio Display.

In addition to its superior connectivity options, the ViewFinity S9 comes packed with extra features. It includes 5W stereo speakers, multiview (split screen), and support for Samsung DeX. Wireless connectivity allows users to connect the monitor to speakers, keyboards, game controllers, and other peripherals using Bluetooth, or easily stream content from compatible Apple devices using AirPlay. The ViewFinity S9 also features built-in Wi-Fi and the Tizen TV operating system, granting access to a variety of apps, including popular streaming services.

On the other hand, the Apple Studio Display is powered by the company’s A13 Bionic chipset and offers features such as Center Stage and “Hey Siri.” It also boasts a six-speaker setup that supports Spatial Audio. However, the Studio Display lacks direct user-accessible settings, with control primarily through the operating system.

The Verdict

Considering the price and the range of features offered, the ViewFinity S9 appears to provide better value compared to the Apple Studio Display. Its wider compatibility with devices, wireless connectivity, and better access to settings make it an appealing choice. Moreover, the inclusion of the Tizen TV OS transforms the ViewFinity S9 into a versatile smart TV.

However, as image quality is subjective and requires thorough real-world testing, a final determination cannot be made without comparing the two monitors side by side. Regardless, the ViewFinity S9 appears to have the potential to rival the Apple Studio Display in terms of both performance and value.