2016 MBP sans TB: what's crippled?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by vyruzreaper, Dec 4, 2016.

  1. vyruzreaper macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2015
    #1
    I don't need the TB and really want my f-row keys. Want to understand what am I getting/losing on the "base" MBP model:

    Pro:
    • It has a bigger battery
    • Lower TDP CPU means more battery life (maybe?)
    • function row keys (depends on your perspective I guess)
    • $300 cheaper
    Cons:
    • CPU performance is worse (if going with 15w I wonder why no kaby lake here?)
    • GPU is worse with lower intel HD card
    • Cheaper and lower performing wifi card used
    • Does not have touch ID (unlike the TB, I think TID is great)
    • 2 usb-c ports instead of 4

    Anything else I am missing?
     
  2. fs454 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 2007
    Location:
    Los Angeles / Boston
    #2
    That's about it - the TB3 bandwidth is limited in some way compared to the four port version (which is further limited in some way compared to the 15"), but it's a non issue for pretty much all use cases that this level of notebook is going to be doing.

    You're probably going to get very noticeably better battery life - both the lower wattage CPU and the bigger battery (and lack of touch bar display) should amount to a pretty solid battery.
     
  3. johngwheeler macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2010
    Location:
    I come from a land down-under...
    #3
    I expect that a 15W Kaby Lake CPU was not chosen because currently there are no versions with Iris graphics in the same category as the SkyLake Iris 540 iGPU used in the ntMBP. The current Kaby Lake 15W CPUs (i5-7200U and i7-7500U) only have HD 620 iGPUs, which are a fair bit slower than the Iris 540 for many tasks. I guess Apple didn't want to compromise GPU performance just to gain a small increase in CPU. It's a juggling act!

    However, 15W Kaby Lake CPUs with Iris graphics are expected to be launched in Feb/Mar 2017, so there is hope that a refresh of MBP range could happen in mid 2017. I hope Apple decides to do a silent refresh for WWDC rather than wait until Oct/Nov 2017. Apparently this could be just a CPU "drop-in" with no changes to the chipset (although I think TB3 is natively supported in Kaby Lake, which could allow the removal of separate Alpine Ridge TB controllers).

    I'm tempted by the ntMBP as a light-weight alternative to my 2013 rMBP 15, but I really don't need it, and will wait to see whether the next generation MBPs with Kaby Lake or Cannon Lake to see if some of the reported teething problems are resolved.
     
  4. vyruzreaper thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2015
    #4

    thanks make sense!

    Should I be worried about the wifi card compared to the tb version?

    I wish apple would include the new killer cards on all their macs
     
  5. wchigo macrumors 6502

    wchigo

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2015
    #5
    Been using it for a week now and haven't noticed any differences from my 2015 12" MacBook. Granted, the internet speeds I have available to me are far from blazing fast, but unless your internet can reach the top speeds as listed on the 13" TB and 15" models, you shouldn't notice much if any difference.
     
  6. kwandrews macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2012
    Location:
    Colorado, USA
    #6
    I had a non-touch 13"....I can answer from experience on both sides.

    Pro:
    • It has a bigger battery YES, it does
    • Lower TDP CPU means more battery life (maybe?) YES, it does. I got 8-11 easily.
    • function row keys (depends on your perspective I guess) Yes
    • $300 cheaper Yes
    Cons:
    • CPU performance is worse (if going with 15w I wonder why no kaby lake here?) Not much worse in actual use unless you plan to render 4k video or other heavy duty tasks.
    • GPU is worse with lower intel HD card Unless you plan to game with it, I wouldn't worry about it
    • Cheaper and lower performing wifi card used True, but how much of a difference did it make to me? None.
    • Does not have touch ID (unlike the TB, I think TID is great) AGREE
    • 2 usb-c ports instead of 4 True, and they are both on the left side.
     

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