When his parents denied him a Super NES, he got mad. When they traded a prize Sega Genesis for a baud modem, he got even. Years of Internet shareware, eBay'd possessions and video game testing jobs after that, he joined Engadget. He helped found The Verge, and later served as Gizmodo's reviews editor.
When he's not madly testing laptops, apps, virtual reality experiences, and whatever new gadget will supposedly change the world, he likes to kick back with some games, a good Nerf blaster, and a bottle of Tejava. If you're planning to trade in your old MacBook Air or slot-loading MacBook Pro for a shiny new Apple computer , you're going to see a major difference as soon as you open the lid.
All of Apple's latest machines come with a "Retina Display. What does "Retina" really mean? It's just a fancy way of saying you're getting a Mac with a very high-resolution screen. Not a 4K screen, mind you, or necessarily one of the highest-resolution screens on the market -- simply a screen so dense you can't see individual pixels at a normal viewing distance, which makes text easier to read and images seem crisper. The MacBook Air and inch MacBook Pro the one with the optical drive were the only holdouts -- though it looks like the inch MacBook Air is sticking around for now.
The high-end regular laptop scored 18 percent faster than its analogous predecessor, while the 3. Both new MacBook Pros smoked the Retina model in the frame rate test, despite the fact that the Retina laptops and the regular inch MacBook Pros have the same graphics hardware. For the inch models, the low end features a 2. Hard drive space in the current models matches the previous generation at GB for the low-end model and GB for the high-end model.
Our lab tests found that the new low-end inch MacBook Pro, with a Speedmark score of , clocked 9 percent faster than the previous analogous low-end model, which scored The new high-end inch MacBook Pro, with a Speedmark score of , is 15 percent faster overall than its predecessor, which scored on the benchmark.
The most notable improvement showed up in graphics performance, demonstrating the effect of the upgraded Intel HD Graphics chip from the previous Intel HD Graphics The new high- and low-end inch MacBook Pros showed 42 percent and 52 percent more frames per second, respectively, in the Cinebench OpenGL test, over the reference models. Both new inch laptops clocked a 33 percent higher frame rate in Portal 2, and are How We Tested: In Handbrake 0.
In Cinebench, we recorded how long it took to render a scene with multiprocessors. Compared to each other, the new high-end inch 2. Beefed up RAM 8GB as opposed to 4GB in the low-end model accounted for the improvements in the Photoshop results over the low-end model and previous models. However, the upgraded i7 processor is more powerful than the i5 processor in the low-end version, and the consequences showed up across the testing suite as the i7 bested its i5 sibling in nearly every test.
Both non-Retina laptops have the older MagSafe power connector, as opposed to the Retina model, which has an updated part to accommodate its thinner frame. On the left side of the case, the inch model has ports for gigabit ethernet, FireWire , and Thunderbolt, two USB 3 ports, an SDXC card slot, and separate ports for audio in and audio out.
While the inch model can mostly be described as a mini inch model, there are some key differences when it comes to the sound system. The smaller model lacks the topside grilles and thus sound from the speakers is inferior in quality compared to the larger model.
Music sounds flatter, tinnier, and has less resonance and depth than the speakers on the inch MacBook Pro. If sound quality is a big part of your user experience, either in creating or listening to audio, be sure to take that into account. The other side of sound is noise. Apple appears to have mostly solved the noise problem for normal operations with these new models.
Even running a video with the DVD in the drive did not kick up the fans or significantly add to the noise level, though I did hear the drive running, faintly, when I put my ear very close to the machine. When I watched a movie from the hard drive, it was similarly quiet, and I never heard the fan with either model. As for the heat factor, I can say that despite a very small bit of warming, the bottom of the unit stayed cool and comfortable in my lap for a long time during regular use, and even when watching streaming video or video running via DVD in the drive.
Both models heated up significantly however with Handbrake encoding. The bottom of the case, especially near where the lid opens and closes, tended to get too warm to keep on my lap during that operation. The inch MacBook Pro has a built-in We found battery life in the same ballpark throughout the new models, with fairly negligible variations.
All the new laptops topped five hours of continuous use, with the inch 2. The bottom of the line inch MacBook Pro came in second place in battery life at 5 hours and 38 minutes. The poorest battery performance came from the inch model with the i7 processor. It lasted only 5 hours and 3 minutes. All the regular MacBook Pro models compared favorably with the Retina models in terms of battery life.
The traditional MacBook Pros hold fast to their unibody form factor and design, upgradability, and price, and target the mid-market of non-creative professionals that seeks to balance features with affordability. The new MacBook Pros are not flashy like the new Retina MacBook Pros, but they offer advantages in price and the flexibility to get into the system and tailor it to your needs after purchase.
With form factors shrinking, the inch MacBook Pros seem increasingly like desktop machines, with the inch models taking precedence on the portable side of the equation.
Unfortunately, Apple got rid of the SD card slot, which means you'll need to use a USB-C card reader or connect your camera directly to the laptop using a dongle. Apple says that the x pixel Retina display on the inch MacBook Pro is 67 percent brighter than before. We didn't see that much of a difference, but this is still one of the brightest panels around; it registered nits in our testing, which is significantly higher than the nits on the last model.
This display also offers rich colors, as evidenced when I downloaded a 4K photo of a sunrise shot through a wave. I saw vibrant blues, greens, yellows and oranges. When watching the Rogue One trailer, I could make out every scratch on a box a rebel was hiding behind, as well as the drops of sweat on his forehead. My only complaint when watching video is that I wish the black levels were higher. On our tests, this screen reproduced percent of the sRGB color gamut higher numbers are better while turning in a Delta-E color accuracy score of 1.
Whether you like to binge watch Netflix, rock out on Spotify or hear every detail in that movie you're scoring in Final Cut Pro, you'll love the improved stereo speakers on the inch MacBook Pro. In fact, these are the best speakers I've heard on this size laptop. Apple redesigned the speakers to deliver twice the dynamic range and three times the peak power while minimizing distortion. On Twenty One Pilots' "Heathens," the bass line had plenty of bunch which never got lost amidst Tyler Joseph's vocals.
Unless you've used the inch MacBook's keyboard, like I have for the last couple years, you'll find the butterfly keyboard on the inch Pro to be disarmingly flat at first. But while this second-generation layout technically has the same low amount of travel 0. I typed this entire review on the inch MacBook Pro, and found it to be plenty speedy and fairly comfortable. On the 10FastFingers typing test, I averaged between 65 and 70 words per minute with 5 to 6 errors.
I did miss some keys at times, forcing me to correct small mistakes. The Force Touch trackpad continues to click without clicking like before, as there's a Taptic Engine that delivers precise haptic feedback. What's different is the size; this touchpad is positively huge at 5. And yet the trackpad never registered accidental swipes or clicks as I typed. My only advice is to disable the Force Click function in settings; I found myself inadvertently long pressing on words to look up their meanings when I only wanted to select text.
The result is a notebook that's faster than the previous Pro but not as speedy as the competition. On Geekbench 4, which measures overall performance, the inch MacBook Pro scored 7, The inch MacBook Pro should have no problem crunching numbers, but again it fell behind 7th-gen Core-powered Windows notebooks. It took the Apple notebook 4 minutes and 39 seconds to match 20, names and addresses. That beats the average but is more than 30 seconds slower than the XPS 13 and a good minute behind the Spectre x and Yoga The new MacBook Pro does smoke the competition when it comes to its flash storage.
It transfered about 5GB worth of files in just 10 seconds, which translates to It delivered mixed results on our tests. You can certainly game on this notebook, as we saw during a playthrough of the Dirt 3 racing game. At full HD resolution at medium settings, the MacBook Pro notched an average of 35 frames per second, which is perfectly playable. That's higher than the Dell XPS 13's 28 fps at the same settings and the 25 fps category average. Apple rates the On the Laptop Mag web surfing test, in which we set the screen at nits of brightness and surf the web over Wi-Fi, the MacBook Pro lasted a strong 9 hours and 50 minutes.
The inch MacBook Pro runs cool in some spots and warm in others, but the fan kept things quiet during our testing. After streaming full-screen video for 15 minutes, the touchpad registered just 85 degrees, which is well below our degree comfort threshold. However, both the keyboard and the bottom of the notebook reached 98 degrees.
You can even get local repair service when you visit other countries around the world. Configure your MacBook Pro with these options, only at apple. Apple takes a complete product life cycle approach to determining our environmental impact. Learn more about MacBook Pro and the Environment. Or read our Product Environmental Reports for detailed information on the environmental performance of every Apple product. Recycling Apple takes a holistic view of materials management and waste minimization.
Learn more about how to recycle your Mac.
Retina display. inch (diagonal) LED-backlit display with IPS technology; by native resolution at pixels per inch with support for. inch MacBook Pro, now with the new Apple M1 chip for faster-than-ever GB SSD storage; inch Retina display with True Tone; Magic Keyboard. The pixel density of Retina displays is so high that your eyes can't detect inch MacBook Pro models introduced in late or later.