Apple MacBook Pro (TouchBar) | Review
Being the lightest and thinnest MacBook Pro ever made, the new MacBook Pro makes a difference with its Touch Bar that feature the function keys. We reviewed the MacBook Pro with TouchBar, which is Professional users preference.
The new MacBook Pro, which we were curious about, is finally available globally. We’ve brought together the advantages and disadvantages of a new generation Macbook Pro.
The new MacBook Pro makes a difference with its sleek, lightweight body, brighter display, powerful performance, Touch Bar and Touch ID, all at first glance. The new MacBook Pro looks pretty cool with the addition of color options to space-grey color, and it incorporates features that will satisfy all the expectations of professionals.
Introduced in 2006 for the first time and celebrating its 10th year this year, MacBook Pro comes with a monolithic body made of aluminum, just like the previous model. This year’s MacBook Pro has two color options for the first time. Apart from the silver color option, the new MacBook Pro also includes space grey color, familiar to iPhone, iPad and MacBook models. With this color option, and with the screen frames being refined, the computer has two different screen sizes, 13 inches and 15 inches.
The 13-inch MacBook Pro is 17 percent thinner than its predecessor with a thickness of 14.9 mm. Delivering 23 percent less volume, the MacBook Pro weighs 1.37 kilograms. The 15-inch model has a thickness of 15.5 mm, which is 14% thinner than its predecessor and the laptop has 20% less volume. The weight of the laptop is 1.83 kilograms. Introduced to the 25th anniversary of Apple notebooks, the new MacBook Pro features a larger Force Touch trackpad than the previous model. This trackpad, which grows about 2 times, provides more space for the fingers to click and move. The bigger trackpad makes it much easier to carry out many finger movements.
Providing a much better experience compared to the previous one, this TrachPad is undoubtedly the best trackpad on the market.
The innovation on the keyboard of the laptop is also striking. For the first time, the butterfly-type mechanism used on the 12-inch MacBook’s keyboard is outdated by the second generation of the new MacBook Pro. The keyboard height of the keyboard on the computer has been increased for more comfort and sensitivity. It may take a while to get used to the keyboard in the first place. With the completion of the learning process, the keyboard provides a very comfortable working experience. Although technically using the same mechanism, we can easily say that the new generation MacBook Pro keyboard is more successful and comfortable than the MacBook’s keyboard.
The loudspeakers integrated into the left and right side of the keyboard have also been improved. The new speakers provide a 58 percent higher sound volume, and two times more bass level. Just as it is on the 12-inch MacBook and iPad Pro, the new MacBook Pro delivers a very high quality sound experience. Let’s just say that from the stereo speakers that receive the power directly from the system, we are very satisfied with the movies we watch on Netflix and the music we listen through Apple Music. Looking at the computer’s ports, there are four Thunderbolt 3-enabled USB-C connections, two on the right and two on the left. In addition to the USB-C, there is also a standard headphone jack on the MacBook Pro. It’s gratifying that Apple didn’t not forget professional users on audio.
Thanks to Thunderbolt 3, data transferring can reach up to 40 GBs, which is unfortunately not possible with USB, SD card and Ethernet connections. You need to purchase an extra adapter to use these connections. For example, we used the optional USB-C-USB adapter to charge iPhone 7 via computer. The USB Type-C adapter brings a regular USB port to the computer and the more expensive one brings USB-C, USB and HDMI ports. The irony part though is that you do not need to use any adapter to charge any Android-powered USB-C phones, even though you need an adapter to charge the iPhone. All you need to do is use the double-sided USB-C cable included with your MacBook Pro adapter. The computer without a MagSafe connection supports a USB-C connection that allows double-sided use, and the computer can be charged from both the left and right side. It is sad that MagSafe is not featured; it was a feature that most of the people loved about old MacBook models.
Moreover, the battery adapter that came with the computer does not include the LED light as on the previous adapters. In other words, there is no visual feedback when the computer is being charging. However, as you plug and unplug the adapter, the laptop generates a sound like the iPhones. Let’s not forget that the iconic Apple logo on the back of the MacBook Pro does not have a light.
Touch Bar is the biggest innovation that the laptop computer has ever had. The key difference that separates the new MacBook Pro from its predecessor and other notebooks is the Touch Bar. Touch Bar, Apple’s innovative push, is at the top of the keyboard. By the way, it can detect multiple touches.
At the far left of the Touch Bar, which is keyboard wide, there is the “Esc” key. This key is accompanied by buttons for turning on and off the display brightness, Mission Control, Launchpad, turning the brightness of the keyboard keys on and off, and turning the volume on and off. It is also possible to customize these keys as you like. You need to go to the keyboard tab of your system preferences and click on the Control Strip. After this, you can drag and drop the screen saver, notification center, screen shot and many more of your favorite settings to the Touch Bar with ease. If an application supports the Touch Bar, it can be customized from the image tab.
For example, while you are in Safari, it’s possible to change the existing stuff with whatever you want. When we opened the iMessage, we were quite happy to see all of the emojis in the Touch Bar area. Apart from Apple’s applications, Touch Bar has also begun to support many applications. Shortly before Touch Bar support, Photoshop provides quick access to features such as masking, cropping, and more with layer features. Brush color and stiffness can easily be changed by touching the Touch Bar. In addition to Photoshop, we tested the Touch Bar feature in DJ application Djay Pro, and the whole team spent quite pleasant minutes. It can be painful to leave old habits and get used to the Touch Bar, but it will not be easy to get back to it after a while – after having done it.
The brightness of the 2170×60 pixel Touch Bar can not be changed and the Touch Bar automatically turns itself off when the computer is not in use.
On the outside, the Touch Bar, which offers a high-level view under the sunlight, is hiding the Touch ID with the power key added to the side. With the Touch ID on iPhone and iPad, it is possible to safely open the lock of the computer with your finger. With the practicality of the Touch ID, you can now choose even more challenging passwords for your computer. The Touch ID, which can be used for shopping, works quite fast and smoothly.
The design of the MacBook Pro is as fascinating as the screen. Like the previous model, the new MacBook Pro has a 15.4-inch screen size and uses IPS technology and an LED backlit Retina display. The 2880 × 1800 pixel resolution value has not changed, the computer is leaving its predecessors with improvements on the screen.
So far, the screen is the best we have ever seen on a Mac laptop, which indeed deserves all the praise. As with the iPhone 7 and iPad Pro, the computer’s screen is both brighter and much more vibrant when compared to its predecessor. We need to mention that the screen, which offers higher contrast and more colors, is much more successful than the screen used on previous MacBook Pros. With the Full HD videos we watched on iTunes, Netflix and Amazon Prime Video, the screen performed exceptionally well. The screen, which managed to get a full note from us, is pretty good in terms of brightness. Let’s say that the display on the MacBook Pro has a higher visibility than its predecessor, especially in sunny environments.
The 15-inch MacBook Pro we tested is powered by a 2.7 GHz quad-core Intel Core i7 processor and 16 GB of RAM. Intel sells seventh-generation Kaby Lake processors to the manufacturers, but Apple chose the sixth-generation Skylake processors in its new MacBook Pro. The MacBook Pro is quite powerful even if the computer uses Skylake-based processors. Unlike the 13-inch model, the 15-inch model also features both Intel HD 530 graphics processor and the Radeon Pro 455 graphics processor with 2 GB of GDDR5 memory. While this configuration is sufficient for most professionals, Apple also offers an optional 2.9 GHz quad-core Intel Core i7 and a 4 GB Radeon Pro 460 graphics processor. If these processors are preferred, extra few hundred dollars must be paid respectively. It is also possible to increase the 512 GB SSD to 2 TB. Of course, you have to pay $1.200 for this. The RAM capacity on the computer where 16 GB of RAM is preferred can not be increased to 32 GB unfortunately.
Power consumption is the reason why Apple does not offer an optional 32 GB ram. If more RAM is involved, the MacBook Pro will consume more power, according to Apple.
Given the overall performance of the computer, let’s say that it performs great. We ran a variety of applications including Safari, Photoshop, Photos, iMovie, Djay Pro, iTunes, Pages and Mail on MacBook Pro that we tested throughout the day. Even though all applications were opened, it has received a full note from us with the transition between computer applications that worked very smoothly. In the computer Geekbench 4 test, which came easily from the top of the programs requiring high performance, it got 3,936 in single core performance and 12,874 in multi core performance.
The new MacBook Pro draws attention with its design and powerful processor performance, but battery life is not as expected. In our first test, we worked on a typical office day in Photoshop, Safari, Pages and Apple Music on the last level computer screen brightness. With all these applications open, the MacBook Pro worked about 4 hours out of charge. With the screen brightness of 75% ( as Apple used in its tests), we have used Safari, Mail, Messages, Slack, Twitter and applications that require less processing power. In this test we made up to 6.5 hours. Of course it is possible to further reduce the screen brightness and extend this time depending on the applications. Apple continues to publish updates on the management of battery life though. The estimated usage time displayed from the status menus that we are familiar with from the older generation devices is not included in the new MacBook Pro with the latest update ( nor is it available on the other MacBooks ).
The battery can be recharged in 1.5 hours and the MacBook Pro has some very successful and innovative features in it. We can say a higher price is one of the bad points of the new MacBook Pro, which provides a more comfortable use with its lightweight and inspired chassis. Instead of spending $2,599 to the 15-inch model, you can also go with the smaller 13-inch model. There is also a 13-inch MacBook Pro without a Touch Bar, but the new model is all about this touch strip.
Score | 9.5
- macOS Sierra
- 2,7 GHz quad-core Intel Core i7
- 15 inches, 2880 x 1800
- 16 GB 2133 MHz LPDDR3
- 512 GB
- 720 FaceTime camera
- Up to 10 hours of wireless connectivity
- Watch movies up to 10 hours in iTunes
- Wait up to 30 days
- Built-in 76.0 watt-hour lithium polymer battery
- Wi-Fi 802.11 a / b / g / n / ac
- Bluetooth 4.0, NFC, USB Type-C, 3.5 mm headphone jack
Dimensions / Weight
- 34,93 x 24,07 x 1,55 cm
- 1,83 kg
- Silver and Space Grey
Why / Why Not?
Why: Marvelous display, attractive design, Touch Bar, Touch ID
Why not: Battery life could be better, external ports