MacBook Pro 15-inch with Touch Bar review

Apple MacBook Pro MLW72LL/A 15.4-inch Laptop with Touch Bar (2.6GHz quad-core Intel Core i7, 256GB Retina Display), Silver

$2,249.99 $2,399.00

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Review Score

8.9 Total Score
Summary

Being one of the most powerful laptop is the world, the MacBook Pro 2016 comes with a beautiful Retina Display surrounded by a strong aluminum chassis. The new Touch Bar proves that Apple hasn't lost its innovative touch, and the 2016 15-inch MacBook Pro is an excellent piece of engineering

Design
9
Keyboard and TrackPad
9
Display
9.5
Touch Bar
8.5
Performance
9
Hardware
8.5
Battery Life
9
PROS
  • USB-C is an enabler
  • Touch Bar has some brilliant uses
  • Touch ID is welcome
CONS
  • Not very latest-gen Intel chips
  • 16GB a restriction for some
  • Touch Bar is a costly addition

Overview

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The new MacBook Pro is finally here. It’s costly, dependent on USB-C and has a fancy new touchscreen atop the keyboard. It’s fair to say there have been a few negative reactions around Apple’s new MacBook Pro line-up. There’s a (somewhat important) school of thought that says this laptop should have been a new MacBook Air, with Apple declaring a workstation-level notebook known as the Pro. The 15-inch MacBook Pro (starts at $2,399; $2,799 as tested) is the closest you will get to promoting the ability of an Apple desktop just like the iMac around the office or in your carry-on luggage. The new model’s long list of changes also includes Touch ID support, immensely well audio and display, an all-new keyboard, and trackpad, and a highly efficient new processor and graphics chip, all tucked into a redesigned ultra slim body.

Design

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15 inch MacBook pro-2016 compare with 15 inch MacBook pro-2015.

The new MacBook Pro features a lovely design that’s clearly inspired by the looks of the 12-inch MacBook (assume clear lines and no glowing Apple logo). There’s also a brand new Space Gray color that fits the notebook quite well. Apple’s pursuit of slimness and lightness give the interest in the design category. The thinner display sheds the illuminated Apple logo for a polished logo, which appears unique on the silver MacBook Pro. This thinner USB-C/Thunderbolt 3 ports are smaller overall and supply a fresh, clear, and almost-symmetrical look to the edges of the MacBook Pro. As with any Apple device, design, and build quality is the MacBook Pro’s most fast response. The fit and finish of this notebook simply best the earlier generation. No company performs their old products feel old like Apple. And the 15” MacBook Pro works in making this impression within seconds.

Keyboard and Trackpad

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The 13 and 15 inch MacBook Pro models now sport the same ultra-low travel butterfly keyboard with domed switches because of the polarizing 12″ MacBook keyboard.  Apple has completely redesigned the keyboard on the MacBook, and it’s a bit like Marmite. We loved it, however, different times we’ve not been so keen, and it certainly takes some getting used to it. There’s less wobble if you punch the keys and it’s good to sort on. However, this new design has a slightly hollow sound and bashing out copy can appear surprisingly noisy.

The trackpad has grown 50% over past models (more on the 15-inch model), and with pressure, sensitivity is also joining the fray. Combine the lot together, and you have a device that lets you stroll through whatever work you have to handle. Drag & Drop (via the second finger in the corner) and the response times were excellent in our tests. The palm rejection worked properly. However, it’s also necessary due to the larger surface because you will typically put a finger or two on the touchpad. Accidental cursor movements have been very rare when we used the keyboard.

Display

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The new 15 inch MacBook Pro has a smaller footprint than the outgoing model due to shrunken bezels, and it’s simply 15.5 mm thick (0.61 inches). That is thinner than the current (and probably last ever) MacBook Air. Weight has been dropped considerably to merely 4.02 lb (1.83 kg).  The 15-inch features quad-core Intel Core i7 chips, the 13-inch a still-speedy 2.9GHz Core i5. The weakness of 16GB of low power memory isn’t preferred for some people who would have considered this notebook. However it’s a few individuals – for many, 16GB will do fantastically.

Touch Bar

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Apple has apparently determined that its Macs shouldn’t have touchscreens and this has resulted in the Touch Bar. That’s all well and good. However, Microsoft has finally made touch helpful with Windows 10, and more and more of us expect to be able to contact screens, especially kids who love to touch the screen of devices like Apple’s iPad.

You can customize the small part of system controls on the right-hand aspect of the Touch Bar, often called the Control Strip. While editing the contents of the strip, the icons wobble, just like in your iPhone. Whenever you add something, you can change its position by dragging it on the Touch Bar in this view – that is tremendously cool. And also you’re also able to choose what seems in the collapsed view, as well as what looks in the full expanded Control Strip view.

Performance

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This part will be dependent on the model and specifications you order. I’m utilizing a 2.7GHz, Core i7 quad-core processor with Radeon 455 Graphics and 16GB RAM. That model comes with 512GB internal flash storage, whereas others can have as much as 2TB storage. The MacBook Pro’s fast SSD (and doubled RAM) make for a night-and-day improvement in Adobe Lightroom. Images load nearly immediately. Edits look on screen the moment I make them. Switching between modules gets the place without turn beach balls. And the application itself launches within 5 seconds.

 

Battery Life

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Apple had a distinct advantage over the Windows competition in years previous, with battery life that was truly impressive. Their claimed battery life was correct, with the new 13″ MacBook Pro and 15″ MacBook Pro Touch Bar models, battery capability has decreased substantially, yet runtimes aren’t horrendously lower. The new model has a 76 WHr battery whereas the old model had a 99.5 WHr battery. Skylake’s power efficiency and the more power saving display help significantly, Still, MacBook Pro with dGPU that could run 8 to 8.5 hours. With moderate use, we received 5-5.5 hours (about 1.5 hours less than the outgoing model). When streaming video utilizing the Silverlight plugin (required to watch Amazon Video using Safari), we received just 5 hours with brightness set to 40%. Simply Silverlight and Adobe Flash Player are more processors intensive than HTML5 video.

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Configuration Options

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The 15-inch MacBook Pro with Touch Bar starts at $2,399, and it has a 256GB PCIe SSD, 2.6-GHz Core i7 processor, Radeon Pro 450 graphics and four USB-C ports. The higher-end Touch Bar model that we reviewed prices $2,799, which features a bigger 512GB PCIe SSD, a 2.7-GHz Core i7 processor And Radeon Pro 455 graphics.

For those who can dwell without the Touch Bar, the previous-gen version of the 15-inch MacBook Pro prices $1,999 and packs 16GB of RAM, a 2.2-GHz Intel Core i7 processor, a 256GB SSD and two USB-C ports. This version only comes in Silver.

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Conclusion

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The new Touch Bar proves that Apple hasn’t lost its innovative touch, and the 2016 15-inch MacBook Pro is an excellent piece of engineering. It gives the performance that professional users want, wrapped up in a gorgeous, light-weight design that also provides all-day battery life. However, it’s extravagantly costly, and the complete lack of upgradeability is a real weakness in a laptop aimed at professionals — especially one which will need to justify its high price tag over a period of several years.

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Where To Buy

Apple MacBook Pro MLW72LL/A 15.4-inch Laptop with Touch Bar (2.6GHz quad-core Intel Core i7, 256GB Retina Display), Silver

$2,249.99 $2,399.00

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