LinkRS

macrumors regular
Oct 16, 2014
220
164
Texas, USA
I love mine :). I don't use it connected to an external monitor, just the built-in screen. I purchased mine In late May, received in early June 2020. FWIW, folks who are generally happy, don't say much. So most of the noise comes from folks that are having issues, so you shouldn't assume that it means that most folks have issues. There has been an issue posted recently where someone gets a brand-new 16" MBP, and won't power on or charge, right out of the box. Those folks ended up having to exchange it, some multiple times, to get it to work. Good luck!
 

JLee14

macrumors newbie
Nov 18, 2015
7
6
P-Pines
I love my 16 inch as well. The keyboard is great, screen is nice, just runs hotter than what I would like it to be at. I use the fan controller software to keep it at a good temp.
 

fishmoose

macrumors 68000
Jul 1, 2008
1,791
218
Sweden
I’m very happy with mine. Screen is good. Keyboard is honestly the best I’ve tried on a notebook. Only caveat is that it isn’t optimized for gaming at all, I only game some basic games such as CIV 6 and the fans and temperature go crazy. Can’t have it all.
 

davidf18

macrumors member
Sep 27, 2013
65
21
I purchased one about a month ago when my 2015 15" totally failed.

I love this machine. For me the battery life is good. I used Coconut Battery to watch my battery consumption doing various tasks (Word, Netflix, VLC, ....) and the energy use is quite good. I consume from 10 to 14 watts typically for a 100 watt battery (now with full brightness).

If you plan on purchasing, consider waiting until November because I think an updated model might ship by then.

I was going to wait to purchase but as I said, my previous Mac died.
 

Biscotti

macrumors regular
Jun 25, 2008
159
22
I just acquired my 16" for work over the summer. The screen is nice, and the keyboard is amazing - way better than the butterfly for me. Battery life is good, but I don't use it too mobile, I usually am connected to a plug or monitor. Overall, this computer and the 12" MacBook are the best computers I've owned since my champion 2011 13" MBA.

The only downside with the 16" has been the screen brightness. It seems really dim and I use it on 90% brightness most days, as 50-75% is just too dark for me. 80% is comfortable and 90% is typical.

Not to hijack, but any others with that issue?
 

ght56

macrumors 6502a
Aug 31, 2020
807
765
I think it is a great computer, Apple did a TON of things right, but it is not perfect. This is just my personal opinion. At the end of the day, the nice thing with Apple is the two week return policy, so I don't want to discourage someone from trying one of these systems.

I was not completely satisfied with the 5500M version I initially had and the more I used the 5500M model, the more hesitant I was to recommend it to anyone using externals without them understanding the implications carried by that GPU...and even without externals, the GPU generated quite a lot of heat, and more than I would prefer on something I hope to use for a 5-10 year run.

I read a lot of reviews before buying, but did not peruse forums...and looking back I feel like most reviews were not as comprehensive as I would have liked. If I could write a collective summary, I might highlight areas where it excels, such as:
  • stellar form factor,
  • fit and finish,
  • keyboard...finally,
  • speakers...WOW!,
  • trackpad...10 cuts above the rest, palm rejection works flawlessly,
  • display color reproduction and brightness,
  • powerful processing,
  • great battery, especially when compared to other laptops with these high-wattage CPUs,
  • capable IO,
  • ability to dissipate a ton of heat despite using such a tiny frame,
  • great implementation of Bluetooth (even though Bluetooth kind of sucks but Apple makes the best of it),
  • generally excellent support with individual issues,
  • how incredibly awesome the 5600M GPU is and how the High Bandwidth Memory it uses absolutely rocks! No, like seriously, this is an absolutely amazing GPU - it's super powerful, and yet it is almost unbelievably efficient,

as well as its shortcomings, such as:
  • occasional OS bugs (applies to any computer but Catalina seems to be more quirky than other macOS versions),
  • 5300M/5500M GPU power draw and heat, which can become especially problematic with external displays (due to both increased fan noise as well as significant loss in both CPU and GPU performance),
  • UI microstutter with the iGPU (which many don't notice),
  • some reports of issues with screen refresh rate (not personally had an issue with this),
  • webcam quality,
  • the SSD can make audible noise (my 5500M version did not, my 5600M version does, it's not very loud but with the way the MBP is made, in a room with zero noise you may hear a soft high-pitched sound if you are young enough to still have the higher frequency hearing [the ability to hear this fades with age]...some call this sound "coil whine" and for most users, myself included, it's not an issue but it should be noted if if someone works in a 100% silent room with padded walls),
  • USB-C's charge limit of 100W = battery discharge in Windows under extremely heavy loads when on AC power,
  • reported ongoing compatibility issues with some professional/prosumer audio equipment,
  • Apple's way of dealing with systematic issues is not always consistent or predictable, and they don't always do a great job communicating what they are doing to address systematic issues,
to try to give a comprehensive overview to a reader before their shelling out a substantial sum of money on a product likely to see major revisions in the near future (at most a year or so). IMHO, this is a design that should have used a GPU with HBM from the very start...the system is absolutely brilliant with the 5600M.

Also, the proportion of individuals satisfied with the system is likely extremely high. Forums are where we are going to see discussion about issues and weaknesses rather than continued discussion of strengths. If everything is working perfectly, there likely isn't a lot to be said. All laptops are going to have their pros and cons. I like the MacBook Pro 16-inch a lot, but I do think individual usage scenario will strongly (more so than ever) determine how good of a match it is, or if a certain spec is a must-have.


edit - added a few things on 10/20. The more I use my 5600M model, the more I love it, and I really cannot say enough good things about it. A lot of reviewers have talked about how much power this GPU has, but they haven't focused as much on the efficiency aspect, which is what makes it so great IMHO. Its operating temps are low, battery runtimes on the 5600M are spectacular, and when using multiple high resolution displays it has only a minor parasitic effect on CPU performance. When using my external displays, my 5600M MacBook Pro has idle temperatures that are about 30F cooler than my 5500M MacBook Pro was and my 5600M MacBook Pro is also somehow capable of bleeding heat off much, much, much faster. Other than the high cost, everything about it is great!


This shows the (minimal) parasitic loss with external displays on a 2.3 GHz 8-core i9 16-inch with 32GB of RAM and the 5600M GPU.

Here is a benchmark showing the system without any displays and the 5600M dGPU active:
Screen Shot 2020-10-19 at 10.41.45 AM.png


Here is a benchmark showing the system with dual QHD displays (60Hz refresh rate) + the clamshell open (obviously dGPU is active):
Screen Shot 2020-10-20 at 2.02.33 PM.png

(These are the middle numbers based on multiple runs in each situation.) As you can see, the loss in performance is absolutely minimal even with dual QHD displays (where the 5600M is drawing about 6-7 watts at idle). With my 5500M model this was a completely different story, with much more substantial losses in benchmark tests, but more problematically slower real-world performance.
 
Last edited:

Chompineer

Suspended
Mar 31, 2020
502
1,174
Ontario
There certainly doesn't exist the perfect device, but Apple got decently close with the 16". I have no complaints. Much better than anything Dell or Lenovo can conjure up.
 
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TL24

macrumors 65816
Oct 20, 2011
1,205
779
I think it is a great computer, Apple did a TON of things right, but it is not perfect. This is just my personal opinion. At the end of the day, the nice thing with Apple is the two week return policy, so I don't want to discourage someone from trying one of these systems.

I was not completely satisfied with the 5500M version I initially had and the more I used the 5500M model, the more hesitant I was to recommend it to anyone using externals without them understanding the implications carried by that GPU...and even without externals, the GPU generated quite a lot of heat, and more than I would prefer on something I hope to use for a 5-10 year run.

I read a lot of reviews before buying, but did not peruse forums...and looking back I feel like most reviews were not as comprehensive as I would have liked. If I could write a collective summary, I might highlight areas where it excels, such as:
  • stellar form factor,
  • fit and finish,
  • keyboard...finally,
  • speakers...WOW!,
  • trackpad...10 cuts above the rest,
  • display color reproduction and brightness,
  • powerful processing,
  • great battery, especially when compared to other laptops with these high-wattage CPUs,
  • capable IO,
  • ability to dissipate a ton of heat despite using such a tiny frame,
  • great implementation of Bluetooth (even though Bluetooth kind of sucks but Apple makes the best of it),
  • generally excellent support with individual issues,

as well as its shortcomings, such as:
  • Occasional OS bugs (applies to any computer but Catalina seems to be more quirky than other macOS versions),
  • 5300M/5500M GPU power draw and heat, which can become especially problematic with external displays,
  • UI microstutter with the iGPU (which many don't notice),
  • some reports of issues with screen refresh rate (not personally had an issue with this),
  • webcam quality,
  • USB-C's charge limit of 100W = battery discharge in Windows under extremely heavy loads when on AC power,
  • reported ongoing compatibility issues with some professional/prosumer audio equipment,
  • Apple's way of dealing with systematic issues is not always consistent or predictable, and they don't always do a great job communicating what they are doing to address systematic issues,
to try to give a comprehensive overview to a reader before their shelling out a substantial sum of money on a product likely to see major revisions in the near future (at most a year or so). IMHO, this is a design that should have used a GPU with HBM from the very start...the system is absolutely brilliant with the 5600M.

Also, the proportion of individuals satisfied with the system is likely extremely high. Forums are where we are going to see discussion about issues and weaknesses rather than continued discussion of strengths. If everything is working perfectly, there likely isn't a lot to be said. All laptops are going to have their pros and cons. I like the MacBook Pro 16-inch a lot, but I do think individual usage scenario will strongly (more so than ever) determine how good of a match it is, or if a certain spec is a must-have.

Exactly my thoughts.

Things I love:

  • Build quality is just top notch, there are only 2-3 other laptops that come close but are nowhere near the MBP's.
  • Display is amazing, I recently purchased and returned (before getting my MBP 16) a Gigabyte Aero 15S XB (4K OLED) gaming/content creation laptop and my god the display on this laptop was amazing. Color accuracy wasn't all there as everything was way over saturated but for gaming and watching movies it was excellent. The MBP 16's display is the only non-OLED screen I've had the pleasure of seeing that comes anywhere close to it, yes it doesn't have inky blacks like OLED's but it's damn good compared to other non-OLED displays.
  • Speakers, man oh man the speakers. To this day I have no idea why other laptop makers haven't put quality speakers into their laptops. Yeah I understand space and thermals play a part but if the MBP 16 can do it then others can as well. I'm specifically referring to gaming laptops that are typically way thicker than a MBP 16, there's no excuse as to why they're cutting their customers short. The speakers on the MBP 16 blow me away every single day. Simply amazing.
  • Keyboard, what else can I say that hasn't already been said? They're amazing to type on and feel excellent.
  • Trackpad, another home run for Apple. Nothing on any other laptop even comes close. Best there is.
  • Processing power is excellent with the i9 and the combination of the 5600m GPU, editing 4K+ content on this thing handles it like a dream. Gaming is also a big plus since the 5600m GPU doesn't draw as much power so it runs cooler, a big plus.
  • Connectivity is a breeze on my MBP 16, I've never had any WiFi issues and even though we don't have WiFi 6 I'm constantly getting over 600mbps down. I am however using a WiFi 6 capable modem/router (Xfinity XB-7).
  • Battery life is also excellent, I've never had a Windows based laptop last as long as my MBP 16.
  • Lastly, to me at least, the biggest positive is having FULL performance while on battery. This is truly a powerhouse on the go, you know, what a laptop is supposed to be. Windows based laptops may have better GPU's but you'll never get their full performance while on battery. This is a major win for Apple.
Things I don't love:
  • Apple's optimization of how the iGPU (Intel UHD 630) is being utilized. There's a lot of stuttering while on the iGPU that can be resolved if Apple simply didn't throttle it down so much. As I've already mentioned on these forums over and over again the Gigabyte Aero 15S XB had a 10th gen Intel i7-10875 that uses the same iGPU (UHD 630) and it had zero issues pushing 4K as the native resolution. It ran everything so god damn smooth that I was amazed at how smooth everything looked and felt. Not once did it struggle to display contents for me in sites that had a heavy dose of high quality photos and videos/gifs.
  • Only having USB-C ports.
  • No ethernet port.
  • Some ghosting is noticeable on these displays, not up to the standard I'm used to seeing with MBP's but I can live with it.
  • Trash webcam, just trash. Might as well not include one if it's going to be this bad.
Overall, there are more things I love about my MBP 16 then I hate. It's a keeper for sure and I'm super excited to see what Apple has in store for us when they transition the MBP 16 over to their Apple Silicon.
 
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johners

macrumors newbie
Jul 8, 2019
6
2
Zürich, Switzerland
I've only been seeing negative reports as of late, and am curious if there's anyone who is happy with their 16"?
I think the bigger issue is buying 1st Generation Apple hardware. It is the one that gets left behind. From memory from MacPro (intel) to iPhones, iPads and watches, it seems the first generation is the beta test. Updates only extend back to version 2. I am itching to buy the new tech, but I have been bitten so many times. I skipped a whole generation just to avoid that keyboard. Think about buying what works. By the time it needs an upgrade, A-silicon will be well established.
 

PhallicPhillip

macrumors newbie
Jul 8, 2019
26
21
Michigan
I really love mine. I think it's the perfect balance of laptop portability with a desktop-like screen and performance, which is exactly what I need. The build quality is wonderful. I bought a skin and ended up taking it off because it took away from the wonderful design. My only regret is missing out on the 5600m gpu, as I purchased mine just a couple months before it was released. The kernel panics and external display issues I was having have stopped. Overall, it's my favorite computer I've ever owned.
 

marzfreerider

macrumors 6502
Jun 13, 2014
282
173
Canada
Had mine since April and nothing but a good experience. Keyboard is finally better after the last crappy butterfly one (my 2017 15" was going on it's 4th in about 1.5 years).
 
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oriberu

macrumors newbie
Oct 9, 2020
6
7
Not really happy. I very much dislike the keyboard compared to my previous 2013 13" MBP. On the old MBP, I could just lightly touch the keys to type and I have to type much harder now. Right Shift button is close to failure, only works like 20% of the time. Touchpad is not as reactive as it was 6 months ago and my battery capacity has fallen under 80 % after 83 cycles.
 

JosepPont

macrumors regular
Oct 25, 2019
184
84
Albaida, Valencian Country
I sold mine a few weeks ago but I was happy with it. No problems with a external 21:9 monitor in clamshell, no coil wine, no kernel panics, it was perfect. I sold it coz I want more RAM (64GB), also it fall down to the floor and had has a scratch and a little dent, after all, I sold it for 3k bucks, not bad. I'm now waiting for a possible refresh before buy a new one.
 
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Crash0veride

macrumors regular
Oct 10, 2016
213
125
Cincinnati
I want to love mine and overall I'm more positive about my 16" than most on here, but there seem to be a plethora of issues with the GPU and apps crashing for me. A year out and the problems are still persistent. Really made me loose faith in Apple on this one.

Overall I'm happy I made switch from my previous iMac, but apple is making it tougher to love this one.
 

ght56

macrumors 6502a
Aug 31, 2020
807
765
Exactly my thoughts.

Things I love:

  • Build quality is just top notch, there are only 2-3 other laptops that come close but are nowhere near the MBP's.
  • Display is amazing, I recently purchased and returned (before getting my MBP 16) a Gigabyte Aero 15S XB (4K OLED) gaming/content creation laptop and my god the display on this laptop was amazing. Color accuracy wasn't all there as everything was way over saturated but for gaming and watching movies it was excellent. The MBP 16's display is the only non-OLED screen I've had the pleasure of seeing that comes anywhere close to it, yes it doesn't have inky blacks like OLED's but it's damn good compared to other non-OLED displays.
  • Speakers, man oh man the speakers. To this day I have no idea why other laptop makers haven't put quality speakers into their laptops. Yeah I understand space and thermals play a part but if the MBP 16 can do it then others can as well. I'm specifically referring to gaming laptops that are typically way thicker than a MBP 16, there's no excuse as to why they're cutting their customers short. The speakers on the MBP 16 blow me away every single day. Simply amazing.
  • Keyboard, what else can I say that hasn't already been said? They're amazing to type on and feel excellent.
  • Trackpad, another home run for Apple. Nothing on any other laptop even comes close. Best there is.
  • Processing power is excellent with the i9 and the combination of the 5600m GPU, editing 4K+ content on this thing handles it like a dream. Gaming is also a big plus since the 5600m GPU doesn't draw as much power so it runs cooler, a big plus.
  • Connectivity is a breeze on my MBP 16, I've never had any WiFi issues and even though we don't have WiFi 6 I'm constantly getting over 600mbps down. I am however using a WiFi 6 capable modem/router (Xfinity XB-7).
  • Battery life is also excellent, I've never had a Windows based laptop last as long as my MBP 16.
  • Lastly, to me at least, the biggest positive is having FULL performance while on battery. This is truly a powerhouse on the go, you know, what a laptop is supposed to be. Windows based laptops may have better GPU's but you'll never get their full performance while on battery. This is a major win for Apple.
Things I don't love:
  • Apple's optimization of how the iGPU (Intel UHD 630) is being utilized. There's a lot of stuttering while on the iGPU that can be resolved if Apple simply didn't throttle it down so much. As I've already mentioned on these forums over and over again the Gigabyte Aero 15S XB had a 10th gen Intel i7-10875 that uses the same iGPU (UHD 630) and it had zero issues pushing 4K as the native resolution. It ran everything so god damn smooth that I was amazed at how smooth everything looked and felt. Not once did it struggle to display contents for me in sites that had a heavy dose of high quality photos and videos/gifs.
  • Only having USB-C ports.
  • No ethernet port.
  • Some ghosting is noticeable on these displays, not up to the standard I'm used to seeing with MBP's but I can live with it.
  • Trash webcam, just trash. Might as well not include one if it's going to be this bad.
Overall, there are more things I love about my MBP 16 then I hate. It's a keeper for sure and I'm super excited to see what Apple has in store for us when they transition the MBP 16 over to their Apple Silicon.

I didn't even think of the WiFi connectivity but you're absolutely right...it's spectacular in its consistency. It's been implemented extremely well and despite not having the newest WiFi card, it's still fast and it's super power-efficient even during periods of heavy usage. On many other computers, this tanks battery. And on 2.4 GHz WiFi, I've observed that it seems to work well even in environments with large amounts of interference.

I kind of wish they made the 5600M the sole GPU on this system. In super mass production it might bump the price of each unit a hundred bucks or so, but it is such a vast improvement and IMO it turns the system into an actual desktop replacement...as I am sure you have noticed as well, everything on the system simply works better. For desktop class GPUs I've read debates regarding whether or not the benefits of HBM is sufficient enough to justify higher costs, but for laptops and especially this MacBook Pro, this particular GPU is such a great match. Its efficiency on battery is especially notable. Hopefully the next generation 16 inch brings HBM to a more affordable reach, or possibly even becomes a standard throughout the entire product line as it is just a delightful GPU.
 
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