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Apple Releases Studio Display Firmware 15.5 With Webcam Update

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source link: https://forums.macrumors.com/threads/apple-releases-studio-display-firmware-15-5-with-webcam-update.2344879/
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Apple Releases Studio Display Firmware 15.5 With Webcam Update

MacRumors

macrumors bot

Original poster

Apr 12, 2001 56,502 19,259
Apple today released a new 15.5 firmware for the Studio Display, with the update coming after a few weeks of beta testing. The Studio Display Firmware improves the performance of the webcam.
studio-display-camera.jpg
The Studio Display firmware can be updated by connecting it to a Mac running macOS Monterey 12.4, which was also released today. After installing the new Mac software, Studio Display owners can go to System Preferences > Software Update to install the firmware.

Apple has been working on a firmware update for the Studio Display since March, to address complaints about the quality of the webcam.

The Studio Display is equipped with a 12-megapixel Ultra Wide camera that supports Center Stage, but Studio Display reviewers and owners discovered that the camera consistently produces grainy, washed-out images, which Apple has said is the result of the system not behaving as expected.

According to Apple's release notes, the firmware refines camera tuning, offering improved noise reduction, contrast, and framing. We tested out the firmware update when it was in beta, and there is a clear difference in camera quality, mostly as it pertains to the way the framing works.


In addition to better framing, colors are not quite as pale, the contrast has been improved, and the overall look is more vibrant. Skin tones are also better than before, and there is less de-noising for more clarity, but ultimately Studio Display owners should not expect dramatic changes.

Article Link: Apple Releases Studio Display Firmware 15.5 With Webcam Update

pauldunlop

macrumors newbie
Jul 23, 2002
When do we start to worry that this is a more fundamental problem with the hardware, and Apple are scrambling to work around them? I had always assumed it was a last minute bug and it would be a fairly quick fix to enable the better image quality - but it seems not?
Reactions: AAPLGeek

connormw

macrumors member
Mar 24, 2018 New York
When do we start to worry that this is a more fundamental problem with the hardware, and Apple are scrambling to work around them? I had always assumed it was a last minute bug and it would be a fairly quick fix to enable the better image quality - but it seems not?
Should have started worrying when the reviews came out.

Software can only do so much. I think Apple thought they could get away with a middling webcam and call it a day. However, when you put it into context that this is a $1500 display, "middling" doesn't do it.

Frankly this is just turning into another overpriced Apple display that doesn't offer much more than competing panels at this price point (or lower).

pauldunlop

macrumors newbie
Jul 23, 2002
Should have started worrying when the reviews came out.

Software can only do so much. I think Apple thought they could get away with a middling webcam and call it a day. However, when you put it into context that this is a $1500 display, "middling" doesn't do it.

Frankly this is just turning into another overpriced Apple display that doesn't offer much more than competing panels at this price point (or lower).
I just find that hard to believe. The webcam in my M1 iMac is better than the Studio Display right now, and that doesn't seem like a hardware skimping thing, that seems like something else. I can't figure they intentionally shipped a worse camera in the Studio Display than the consumer-targeted M1 iMac.

danbalsh

macrumors 6502
May 7, 2003
Having been using the Betas, it's certainly an improvement... but still not great.

Still seeing very bad Power Management bugs with the Stupid Display tho, i.e. the fans running 24x7 even when the connected MacBook Air is asleep and fully charged...

Benjamin Nabulsi

Contributor
Apr 28, 2020
it would be great if anyone finds traces of Studio Display Pro

dugbug

macrumors 68000
Aug 23, 2008 1,661 1,269 Somewhere in Florida
When do we start to worry that this is a more fundamental problem with the hardware, and Apple are scrambling to work around them? I had always assumed it was a last minute bug and it would be a fairly quick fix to enable the better image quality - but it seems not?
So center stage is a wide angle camera system that pans in sw. By definition then the framed image you see on a zoom call is a subset of the pixels available from the camera, thats some of our resolution problem there. One person sitting close to the webcam in a dimly lit room is not what this technology was intended for so overall its a bad fit for most of us. No sw update is going to turn it into the right camera lens.

That being said, the webcam is decent enough for zoom calls and the like. I have not tested this new firmware but have seen the noise get bad if there is light behind me like through a window.

The monitor though is really amazing otherwise. I feel like the webcam gets way too much press compared to the overall build quality and display sharpness.

jmonster

macrumors newbie
Mar 21, 2022
I just find that hard to believe. The webcam in my M1 iMac is better than the Studio Display right now, and that doesn't seem like a hardware skimping thing, that seems like something else. I can't figure they intentionally shipped a worse camera in the Studio Display than the consumer-targeted M1 iMac.
The fact is the iMac does have a much better camera (I also have both) because it's using the entire sensor instead of cropping it down to 1/4-1/6 of its area.

They chose the gimmicky center stage feature. The Touch Bar of 2022.

jha

macrumors newbie
May 4, 2021
Quality has definitely improved with the update. More than good enough for web meetings even before, not sure what everybody expects.

pauldunlop

macrumors newbie
Jul 23, 2002
The fact is the iMac does have a much better camera (I also have both) because it's using the entire sensor instead of cropping it down to 1/4-1/6 of its area.

They chose the gimmicky center stage feature. The Touch Bar of 2022.
Yeah, that's actually a good point. I had forgotten that. Urgh. It's a great monitor, but I'm super unhappy that I've had to mount a spare iPhone with Camo software right above it to have a reasonable camera. Just feels wrong, having spent so much on something brand new. ::Grumble::

Reeneman

macrumors member
Nov 25, 2021
How many Updates will we see with camera updates?
Still waiting for a firmware update on my Galaxy s7 to bring the camera quality on par with newer devices 😅

ececlv

macrumors regular
Sep 26, 2014
Should have started worrying when the reviews came out.

Software can only do so much. I think Apple thought they could get away with a middling webcam and call it a day. However, when you put it into context that this is a $1500 display, "middling" doesn't do it.

Frankly this is just turning into another overpriced Apple display that doesn't offer much more than competing panels at this price point (or lower).
What competing 5k monitor do you recommend?

TIMO_737

macrumors newbie
Sep 16, 2019 Hasselt - Belgium
Having been using the Betas, it's certainly an improvement... but still not great.

Still seeing very bad Power Management bugs with the Stupid Display tho, i.e. the fans running 24x7 even when the connected MacBook Air is asleep and fully charged...
Yeah power management is really poor. Even connected to a Mac mini the fans constantly come on. If I change my focus or I take a picture for example on my iPhone and this ‘wakes’ the mac mini to connect to icloud, fans start spinning. Any minor background task the Mac mini does it engages the fans of the display even with the screen staying black. Really needs fixing. Already sent feed-back to Apple. Disappointing.

alexandr

macrumors 68040
Nov 11, 2005 3,410 5,574 11201-121099
Quality has definitely improved with the update. More than good enough for web meetings even before, not sure what everybody expects.
Yea, but what the hell isn't good enough for web meetings?..

Apple Knowledge Navigator

macrumors 68030
Mar 28, 2010 2,595 7,147
When do we start to worry that this is a more fundamental problem with the hardware, and Apple are scrambling to work around them? I had always assumed it was a last minute bug and it would be a fairly quick fix to enable the better image quality - but it seems not?
I'm surprised you thought it was a bug. It's been said so many times - the 'issue', if you can even call it that, is simply that Apple is using too small a sensor for the size of the display. The reason the image quality appears worse than on an iPad is because it is being magnified to 27".
Reactions: 3Rock

Sir Ruben

macrumors 68000
Jul 3, 2010 1,781 UK
Yeah, that's actually a good point. I had forgotten that. Urgh. It's a great monitor, but I'm super unhappy that I've had to mount a spare iPhone with Camo software right above it to have a reasonable camera. Just feels wrong, having spent so much on something brand new. ::Grumble::
I think you are justified in being unhappy with the quality of the camera. It’s an expensive monitor where apple priced it as high as they could get away with and saved as much money as they could get away with. I mean the screen is great but let’s not pretend it’s anything other than a slightly better iMac screen that have been knocking around for YEARS. The camera IS poor, but Apple know they can get away with it now and we’ll just eat it up.

Regards,

A Fellow Studio Display Owner 😆
Reactions: siddavis and SSDGUY

connormw

macrumors member
Mar 24, 2018 New York
So center stage is a wide angle camera system that pans in sw. By definition then the framed image you see on a zoom call is a subset of the pixels available from the camera, thats some of our resolution problem there. One person sitting close to the webcam in a dimly lit room is not what this technology was intended for so overall its a bad fit for most of us. No sw update is going to turn it into the right camera lens.

That being said, the webcam is decent enough for zoom calls and the like. I have not tested this new firmware but have seen the noise get bad if there is light behind me like through a window.

The monitor though is really amazing otherwise. I feel like the webcam gets way too much press compared to the overall build quality and display sharpness.
I think the larger issue here is the quality at the price point. The display panel is almost exactly the same as the LG UltraFine 5K, which launched with the new Mac Pro several years ago. This wasn't a ground-breaking, custom panel design with additional features like we saw in the XDR display.

Apple essentially took a several year old panel, put a new wrapper on it, added some additional IO and a relatively meh camera, and upped the price. Representing the display as anything extraordinary (which, to be fair, Apple does with nearly every product) was just not accurate. And frankly, the price point - without a height adjustable stand - is a sin in 2022.

Most pro users (who aren't editing 4K footage) would be well served with a much lower cost 4K display in my mind. The extra resolution afforded on a 5K display is primarily helpful for 4K workflows. But once again, the net was cast wide on the Studio lineup, and a large number of users of these devices most likely aren't in the 4K video editing space.
Reactions: fwmireault

SSDGUY

macrumors 6502a
Jul 27, 2009 1,455
I think you are justified in being unhappy with the quality of the camera. It’s an expensive monitor where apple priced it as high as they could get away with and saved as much money as they could get away with. I mean the screen is great but let’s not pretend it’s anything other than a slightly better iMac screen that have been knocking around for YEARS. The camera IS poor, but Apple know they can get away with it now and we’ll just eat it up.

Regards,

A Fellow Studio Display Owner 😆
Feeling a little better about my $725 LG 32" 4K purchase. Though when I use my 2015 iMac (now relegated my music studio) I do miss the UI sharpness and extra brightness of the 27" 5K. I didn't need a webcam or built-in speakers so I simply could not justify the $'s for SD, and the XDR price is out of reach.
Reactions: Sir Ruben

CPx

macrumors 6502a
Sep 6, 2013

danbalsh

macrumors 6502
May 7, 2003
Yeah power management is really poor. Even connected to a Mac mini the fans constantly come on. If I change my focus or I take a picture for example on my iPhone and this ‘wakes’ the mac mini to connect to icloud, fans start spinning. Any minor background task the Mac mini does it engages the fans of the display even with the screen staying black. Really needs fixing. Already sent feed-back to Apple. Disappointing.
Yep, it’s not great - I’ve had a couple of chats with Apple and they don’t seem to understand the issues

Kissmo1980

macrumors regular
Feb 16, 2021
I have a MBP 14 inch m1 Max - the camera on it is disgusting -> mainly because you cannot turn off the skin smoothing…
I literally join meeting connecting a Brio 4K - as I am tired of looking like a toy.

I am 42 - I want to show my wrinkles!

Why on earth Apple doesn’t have a slider for the amount of processing is applied to the skin and other components?
It would make people happier.
I imagine these displays have the same problems.
Reactions: Alfredo_Delgado

MisterSavage

macrumors 68040
Nov 10, 2018 3,432 3,769
I almost had to return mine when I tried to update the software on it. Not looking forward to applying the update.

petvas

Contributor
Jul 20, 2006 5,276 1,545 Munich, Germany
After the update the web cam quality has noticeable improved. Of course nobody should be expecting miracles here. I cannot say that the camera now is worse than what we have on the MacBook Pro or the iPad Pro. Please also consider that we are viewing images on a much higher res display, so of course everything will be much more noticeable..The web cam is good for me now. Others might still want/need something better, but I am happy now with the camera as it is.

mikethemartian

macrumors 65816
Jan 5, 2017 1,086 1,467 Melbourne, FL
The fact is the iMac does have a much better camera (I also have both) because it's using the entire sensor instead of cropping it down to 1/4-1/6 of its area.

They chose the gimmicky center stage feature. The Touch Bar of 2022.
Is there a setting where they let you turn off center stage and allow you to use the entire sensor?
Reactions: cw75

thejadedmonkey

macrumors G3
May 28, 2005 8,826 2,351 Pennsylvania
Quality has definitely improved with the update. More than good enough for web meetings even before, not sure what everybody expects.
A camera worthy of a $1500 display, I'm guessing?

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