Hands-On With Twelve South's New Universal BookArc for MacBooks

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Twelve South today unveiled an all new design for its popular BookArc, introducing a revamped version that's compatible with all current Apple MacBook models, including the 12-inch Retina MacBook, the Retina MacBook Pro, the non-Retina MacBook, and the MacBook Air.

The BookArc, for those unfamiliar with the product, is designed to hold a MacBook while it's being used in clamshell mode when connected to an external display, keyboard, and mouse for an organized desktop setup. A vertical docking station like the BookArc can keep a MacBook in clamshell mode out of the way and cooler than it would be when flat on a desk.


Twelve South's new BookArc has the same general arc shape as previous BookArcs, but it ships with several silicone inserts that can be swapped out to fit different MacBooks. Taking out a silicone insert takes just a few seconds, and while putting one in is a bit tricker, it's a painless process that should allow people with multiple MacBooks to switch between inserts with ease.


An insert that fits both the Retina MacBook Pro and the MacBook Air ships with the BookArc, and inside the packaging, there are additional inserts sized for the thicker non-Retina MacBook Pro and the thinner 12-inch Retina MacBook. Customers who previously owned a BookArc for the Retina MacBook Pro will be familiar with the different inserts, as that model also came with inserts to fit different MacBooks.


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Article Link: Hands-On With Twelve South's New Universal BookArc for MacBooks
 

mac1984user

macrumors 6502a
Dec 10, 2009
793
347
United Kingdom
This is something I've been considering for a while, as I frequently have to plug my rMBP into an external monitor at work and at home. I can't stomach the cost and questionable utility of the HengeDock. Anyway, it's nice to see a bit of added versatility - it would just be nice to see something similar at a $30 price point.
 
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Aluminum213

macrumors 68040
Mar 16, 2012
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These are nice and well made if you are really short on space, I bought one years ago and never touched it because it was just a hassle to use everytime

If I had absolutely NO room on my desk I would have kept using it
 

mattopotamus

macrumors G5
Jun 12, 2012
13,682
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I used one with a rMBP and it really is a clean solution. The tabs on the bottom for cables is pretty weak though and they slide out.
 

thasan

macrumors 65816
Oct 19, 2007
1,088
1,019
Germany
With all due respect to the designers, I just cannot believe people would buy this (but many have.. As I can see from the comment above).
It's neat that right but I would have probably put it behind the external display. Or against books or wall etc etc :p plus, those who have access to a 3D printer can print a funkier one :)
 

macs4nw

macrumors 601
Twelve South is one of several companies whose products I like a lot (BlueLounge is another one). Their accessories aren't cheap, but their products are generally well thought-out and beautifully constructed, so you kinda get what you pay for.

I have however always wondered if these MBAs or MBPs can cool adequately in clamshell mode. Don't they cool thru air intake at the keyboard and out the back? So being closed wouldn't that impede the airflow? A Genius told me this when I was considering one of those silicone kb covers a few years ago.

The new MacBooks are of course not affected by that and would look real smart in the BookArc but shucks, no gold or SG. :(
 

dsburdette

macrumors member
Apr 9, 2010
67
46
Alpharetta, GA
I can understand if you're short on space... but it seems kinda silly to totally ignore the built-in monitor on the laptop.

Multi-monitor computing is great! Surely you can use the 2nd monitor for something:

Yep, I've got a three monitor setup (thanks to the 2 lightning ports) with my MacBook Pro. I use a similar stand like you have - think it's the M Stand but not near it at the moment. As a web developer and graphic designer, multiple monitors are a godsend for work efficiency.
 

Kr15

macrumors newbie
Feb 13, 2014
27
14
London
Why to bother with the dock at all? + Especially lose one extra screen by using those docks?
You spend a money on the dock and keyboard which still takes up a space on your desk.
Maybe I don't understand.

I do use my MBP as a keyboard and Mail/iTunes/Misc screen while larger screen sits on some books at the back. (+ Testing iMac in Target Display Mode)

This setup works very well for me.
Photo attached.
 

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SkimMilk168

macrumors regular
Mar 19, 2014
150
2
Singapore
I own 2 of the previous version for my wife's and my rMBPs. Holds them really well, and I got them on offer from Amazon. Think I paid $29.90 each. It's kind of a space saver for us on our small and full desk.

For the IKEA napkin holder, it's a great idea, but it can hold at most the 13" MBP and not the bigger ones.
 

576316

macrumors 601
May 19, 2011
4,056
2,556
Got the lighter wood one last Christmas. Still a gorgeous, elegant MacBook stand solution and looks great on my Jacobean console table!

Is this new one any different apart from the new inserts?
 

Dicelu

macrumors member
Jun 2, 2015
96
82
I can understand if you're short on space... but it seems kinda silly to totally ignore the built-in monitor on the laptop.

Multi-monitor computing is great! Surely you can use the 2nd monitor for something:

What's really silly is assuming that everyone has the same needs, tastes and idea of practicality as yours, or that they have a small external monitor like you do.
 

Michael Scrip

macrumors 603
Mar 4, 2011
5,714
5,104
NC
What's really silly is assuming that everyone has the same needs, tastes and idea of practicality as yours, or that they have a small external monitor like you do.
I was simply stating my opinion. But your reply sounds a little assholish.

Look... I understand if someone has an extremely tiny desk. They can certainly put their laptop into clamshell mode and stand it up in a napkin holder.

However I still think the benefits of dual monitors still outweigh the problems of a cramped desk. Again.. that's the opinion part of my earlier comment.

BTW... that wasn't my desk... just an image I pulled off of Google. I was trying to show that an open laptop stand doesn't take up much more room than a stand-up laptop stand. And you get to actually use the screen on the laptop with an open laptop stand.

But hey... they spent all that money on a Macintosh laptop to NOT use its screen? More power to 'em.
 

Dicelu

macrumors member
Jun 2, 2015
96
82
kinda silly to totally ignore the built-in monitor on the laptop
But hey... they spent all that money on a Macintosh laptop to NOT use its screen? More power to 'em.
That sounds assholish to me. This is basically subtext that someone who prefers clamshell mode over dual screens is stupid. There are better ways to share your opinion.

Spend that money and not use the screen? As if they are not using the screen at all. Pretty ridiculous hyperbole there. How about they use the screen when they are actually using the machine as a laptop, when not at their desk?

Besides, some people do not like multiple screens of *significantly* different sizes, or screens at different heights, etc. To each his own.
 

Michael Scrip

macrumors 603
Mar 4, 2011
5,714
5,104
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That sounds assholish to me. This is basically subtext that someone who prefers clamshell mode over dual screens is stupid. There are better ways to share your opinion.

Spend that money and not use the screen? As if they are not using the screen at all. Pretty ridiculous hyperbole there. How about they use the screen when they are actually using the machine as a laptop, when not at their desk?

Besides, some people do not like multiple screens of *significantly* different sizes, or screens at different heights, etc. To each his own.
I made a comment yesterday that no one had a problem with...

...except you.

Why? What kind of crusade are you on?

My original comment wasn't directed at anybody. It was a standard internet comment where I shared my opinion. I'm allowed to do that... welcome to the internet.

BTW... six people liked that comment... so it couldn't have been that controversial.

Yet it got you all excited for some reason. Sorry for that.
 

Traverse

macrumors 604
Mar 11, 2013
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I can understand if you're short on space... but it seems kinda silly to totally ignore the built-in monitor on the laptop.

Multi-monitor computing is great! Surely you can use the 2nd monitor for something:
Why to bother with the dock at all? + Especially lose one extra screen by using those docks?
You spend a money on the dock and keyboard which still takes up a space on your desk.
Maybe I don't understand.
I use one to save desk space because I already have two external monitors. OS X or the hardware one have a tough time pushing a Retina display. I see a dramatic difference in fluidity of the general OS when using my computer in clamshell with multiple external. The minute I open the display and the 750M has to power the retina display too, my fps drop on everything.

And no matter how good a display it may be, a 15" display is a 15" display. I'd rather work on two large monitors at home and just use the built-in display when I'm out.

https://forums.macrumors.com/attachments/img_0022-jpg.549558/
 

Michael Scrip

macrumors 603
Mar 4, 2011
5,714
5,104
NC
I use one to save desk space because I already have two external monitors. OS X or the hardware one have a tough time pushing a Retina display. I see a dramatic difference in fluidity of the general OS when using my computer in clamshell with multiple external. The minute I open the display and the 750M has to power the retina display too, my fps drop on everything.

And no matter how good a display it may be, a 15" display is a 15" display. I'd rather work on two large monitors at home and just use the built-in display when I'm out.

https://forums.macrumors.com/attachments/img_0022-jpg.549558/
Oh sure. I wasn't referring to having two external monitors.

Nice setup!

:D
 
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