Apple MacBook Pro 2021 Review: Everything Fans Want


Apple’s 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro laptops will be available in stores this week. I’ve been testing 14-inch models for the past few days.

The new MacBook Pro has a clear focus on design and functionality. This is a change from 2016 that has offended some customers by removing ports that Apple still finds useful in the name of a cleaner design. These customers also had to buy an adapter to connect the camera and card reader to the port. To make matters worse, the keyboard wasn’t very good and was broken for many until it was updated last year. Today, Apple customers have a MacBook Pro with no design compromises. It has lots of ports and a great keyboard.

This shows that Apple has listened to its most loyal fans.

The new MacBook Pro is Apple’s highest-end laptop and will be available in stores on Tuesday. They are loved by people who frequently edit photos and videos, and developers who need a Mac to create apps for Apple products such as the iPhone. The 14-inch model starts at $ 2,000 and the 16-inch version starts at $ 2,500.

MacBook sales are at a loss. Apple CEO Tim Cook said in June that the first M1 chips in computers such as the MacBook Air “promoted” Mac growth, in addition to increasing demand for new computers due to the corovirus pandemic. rice field. Mac sales increased 16% year-over-year in the June quarter.

The new MacBook Pro helps Apple maintain its momentum, especially among app developers and video and audio professionals who need more power than the MacBook Air offers. It may also appeal to those who haven’t upgraded from a MacBook Pro prior to 2015, as previous models don’t have a port option.

I tested a 14 inch model. This is the finest Apple laptop I’ve ever used and is much more powerful than I know what to do. Here’s what you need to know about this:

How is it

The new MacBooks Pro has been completely redesigned from a relatively boxy look to a new, more rounded design that I really like. The 14-inch model I have is reminiscent of a much thinner and lighter version of the 15-inch PowerBook or Apple’s plastic MacBook, which was discontinued in 2011. And I like it not too big.

MageSafe, two Thunderbolt 4 USB-C ports and a headphone jack.

Both models have a better screen, HDMI port, SD card slot, and faster Apple M1 Pro or M1 Max processor. There are also three Thunderbolt 4 ports for adding external monitors and other accessories.

Apple has revived MagSafe this year. This is a popular magnetic charger that was discontinued after the 2017 MacBook Air. I like the fact that I can charge my MacBook Pro up to 50% in just 30 minutes. It’s also pulled out if you stumbled on the code, so your entire MacBook won’t crash. If you prefer, you can also use the Thunderbolt port to charge with a USB-C power adapter.

The new 14.2-inch Liquid Retina XDR display may be my favorite feature. Experts will probably understand the main reason it exists: so you can color grade really sharp HDR videos and photos accurately. But I like it because it’s incredibly bright.

It doesn’t make much sense to most people, so I don’t often drop numbers in reviews, but it’s easiest to explain. The brightness of the 13-inch MacBook Pro in 2020 is 500 nits, while the brightness of the MacBook Air is 400 nits. In contrast, the new 14-inch MacBook Pro has a brightness of 1,000 knits, but thanks to the new mini LED backlight, certain areas of the display can be very bright in movies and photos, so it’s 1,600 knits. May reach. The contrast ratio of the screen is also 1 million to 1. That means very dark black and light white. The combination of sharp resolutions, rich colors, high brightness, and high contrast ratio provide better image quality than some high-end HDTVs.

For a normal person like me, it means that colors really pop in movies and TV shows. Even photos snapped using HDR on the iPhone 13 look the same as iPhone screens that support HDR. That’s a big difference from my M1 MacBook Air. We are also grateful for the addition of ProMotion to make scrolling smoother. This is a feature that is also included in Apple’s new iPhone 13 Pro models and iPad Pro, which makes a difference when scrolling through news articles. Also, if you’re not scrolling or doing something that requires a high refresh rate, make on-the-fly adjustments to extend battery life. However, if you are a video editor who needs a specific refresh rate, you can turn it off or select a specific rate.

The speaker is much better than any other laptop speaker I have tested. They have a significantly rich bass and can fill the room with audio. It also supports spatial audio, such as surround sound when playing Dolby Atmos-encoded movies and music. It produces the sound of movies and music as if it were coming from anywhere, not just from the left or right of the laptop.

The keyboard works the same as previous generation models that received major updates after Apple’s Butterfly keyboard caused all sorts of problems, from sticky keys to repetitive keystrokes. It’s as easy to type as my M1 MacBook Air. I like Apple removing the touchbar screen from the top, which wasn’t very useful on previous MacBook Pro models. Instead, I replaced it with a full-sized function key that was easy to tap to adjust volume and screen brightness. more.

Next is the new M1 Pro chip. It’s a lot more powerful than what I need on a laptop, that’s why it’s really sold to professionals. I’ve tested some demos that can test 6 iOS apps running side by side in Xcode. For example, a developer wants to see how well a new app works on different models of iPhone. Edit multiple 8K HDR video scenes (or Apple’s brighter XDR content) in real time within an app like Final Cut Pro, or render and tweak how the sun hits a 3D model in Cinema 4D. .. Everything can be done without waiting for the computer to render. Experts will appreciate the ability to perform these tasks from a laptop with screens and processors that enable them. Finally, if you’re upgrading to the M1 Max chip, you can add up to two displays or three screens on your M1 Pro. This is from a single external monitor with an M1 chip last year, which is a big problem for people like me who prefer to run multiple screens at once.

Let’s go back to something that everyone can enjoy. I have a 1080p webcam. Apple has finally migrated from previous models of 720p cameras. Last year, it was actually a huge improvement, thanks to the M1 chip, which used software to improve quality. But this year, sharper resolutions stand out and are finally visible in video chat. I hope Apple can find a way to add a Center Stage feature to your laptop that keeps track of you as you move around on your iPad. Studio mics are also useful for clear sound.

Finally, battery life is good considering all the power available. Apple promised up to 17 hours of battery life for HD video playback on an 8-notch brightness screen, and I approached it in a video playback test, losing about 23% of battery life every 4 hours of video playback. rice field. Of course, your mileage will change. For example, video rendering reduces that. However, if you need this for web browsing or document editing, you can get the job done on weekdays without any problems.

What’s wrong

There is a notch for the webcam at the top of the display. People will have a strong opinion about it. I don’t care about it in most situations.

Everything around the notch is dark anyway, so if you have a dark mode laptop that I did, you won’t notice it. And I like trade-offs. You’ll see a slim bezel at the top of the screen instead of the big borders of previous models. If you have a light background and menu, you’ll see a notch, but it will fade into the background rather than an iPhone that switches to video content, for example. However, I wish I had Face ID in the notch. This is a facial recognition feature that unlocks iPhone and some iPad models.

The Touch ID fingerprint reader is familiar to other Macs, so it’s okay. However, Face ID allows you to quickly launch your laptop from your desktop while you’re sitting. In addition, some Windows laptops, such as Microsoft’s Surface products, have face recognition options similar to Windows Hello.

2020 MacBook Air on top of the 2021 14-inch MacBook Pro

Also, all that power comes with small trade-offs. It’s a bit heavier than I expected at 3.5 pounds.

2020 MacBook Air on top of the 2021 14-inch MacBook Pro

Not too heavy, but heavier than the 2.8-pound MacBook Air and 0.5-pounds heavier than last year’s 13-inch MacBook Pro.

Should you buy it?

The 14-inch MacBook Pro is a nearly perfect combination of power and portability. Everyone appreciates great screens, great speakers, fast charging, and an improved webcam, but this laptop has all the ports, additional power supplies, and display technology not available on other Apple laptops. Great for professionals who need. The M1 MacBook Air is still a laptop for most people and costs $ 1,000 cheaper, but I wouldn’t blame you if you bought it instead.