Hands-On With the New July 2019 13-Inch MacBook Pro

Discussion in 'MacRumors.com News Discussion' started by MacRumors, Jul 22, 2019.

  1. LizKat macrumors 603


    Aug 5, 2004
    Catskill Mountains
    Yeah I've decided to skip this iteration if possible even though I'm starting to consider my next laptop. So I'm getting my 2012 MBP keyboard replaced out of warranty. I inadvertently dragged a vase down onto it quite awhile back while flipping a cable out of my way, ding'd one key so bad it even broke the underpinnings and mysteriously also disabled a bunch of adjoining keys... so I've been using an original magic BT kb with it.

    I was waiting for the warranty to expire bc I know my kb replacement is not covered. So now I'm going to get that addressed and also get the spinning drive swapped out for an SSD. The 2012 machine is a 2016 apple refurb purchase, so warranty just expired, and the thing still does meet my needs now. Plus tbh I do still really like having an inbuilt optical drive, I have a bunch of favored DVD movies.

    So I'd rather postpone a replacement buy for awhile and see what comes after this interim update.... but if the 2012 machine I bought in 2016 croaked right now I might go for the 2019 update. I'm not a big fan of how that butterfly kb feels but knowing it's replaceable under the 4y warranty, I could live with it. But not unless it turns out I have to. :)
  2. tubomac macrumors member

    Aug 26, 2013
    My bad.
    You are right instead. Apple refers to Macbook Pros in the way you wrote.
    It seems that if you buy the Macbook Pro 2 TB3 you get a progressive increase in speed depends of SSD size:

    128GB slow speed
    256GB a little faster
    512GB the same speed of Macbooks Pro 4 TB3 (that starts with 256GB SSD)
  3. FairlyKors macrumors regular


    Jun 21, 2018
    Staines, East London
    Well, why not cut the 128GB drive in the entry level machine to 64GB or 32GB then? Apple can save $10 in parts and no one will be wasting unused space?
  4. PickUrPoison Suspended

    Sep 12, 2017
    Sunnyvale, CA
    Why not skip the straw man argument and respond to what I actually wrote?

    Nothing in your reply is responsive to my post, do you want to try again? I mean, feel free to post crap, but there’s no point in quoting me, is there?
  5. WRX-SRQ macrumors member


    Sep 5, 2012
    As a professional photographer, I would love to go back to a MacBook Pro, but Apple has since distanced itself from the creative professional and our "needs." I'm not the only photographer who's made the jump back to PC, so have others like Glyn Dewis and Trey Ratcliff to name just two. Cook and Co. seem to care more about quantity over quality, form over function and profit margins over features.

    All I want is a large HDD (or SDD) upgradable RAM (16 or 32GB), multiple ports for HDMI, USB 3 and C, and most importantly, an SD card slot. The fact that I need adapters and dongles to make all of this work defeats the point of a portable powerhouse. I don't want to move around and travel with what looks like a collection of cable and dongles hanging off my machine, just to get a few things to work.

    If I were to spec out a MacBook Pro, with the same specs as a powerful PC laptop, I'd spend close to $3,000 ($2,985, last I checked) rather than $1,875 for a PC laptop that I built, that has everything I need, 32GB of RAM 1TB SSD, a RTX mobile card, and an i7 processor and of course, ports, where all I need is my charger and the computer itself, maybe a wireless, Bluetooth mouse.

    I don't always need a computer that's as thin as a slice of cheese, keep that for the Air's, for the Pro's, we "Pros" don't care about 1 extra lb or .5mm of thickness. We want performance, battery, and features (i.e. ports).
  6. ikir macrumors 65816


    Sep 26, 2007
    SSD is incredibly fast, CPU too don't be fooled. T2 and other killer features makes it really worth the price. Sure even with APFS I could not use a 128GB machines but it depends.
    --- Post Merged, Jul 24, 2019 ---
    Me too, love this keyboard and my friends and workmates too.
  7. Peperino macrumors 6502a


    Nov 2, 2016
    Apple insisting to upgrade the current Macbook Pro, is like trying to upgrade and sell us a Ferrari with flat tires and no gas.
    It looks nice, but it is pathetic. Courtesy of Mr. Ive.
  8. theluggage macrumors 601

    Jul 29, 2011
    ...many "pros" also use pro "apps", that take up quite a lot of space on the system disc, create large working files, need fast access to large libraries etc. 128GB is a bit tight even for that, especially as your machine will slow to a crawl if your system disc gets anywhere near full (especially with an SSD).

    ...and on top of that, its a laptop - generally people buying laptops want to move it between locations, use it in the field, on trains, in hotel rooms etc. You won't have fast access to your fileservers/NAS/SAN over WiFi or a cellular modem and you don't really want to have to plug in an external drive every time you sit down to use it. Sorry, but a laptop needs to have adequate fixed storage to let you carry a useful chunk of your work around with you.

    These 128GB machines are for people who need a web browser, basic office software and otherwise live in the crowd. Maybe that's OK for "entry level" - but 256GB SSDs, even fairly fast NvME ones, aren't exactly luxury items these days, and these are fairly expensive laptops, so having a Macbook "pro" start at 128GB - non-expandable after purchase - really isn't a good look.
  9. pweicks macrumors regular


    Dec 23, 2016
    10 years ago, who would have ever thought that Apple would stoop so low in the quality of their products, and get so high on their greed, that they would literally be selling products out of the box with replacement programs already in place due to the poor quality of those products. Pathetic. Thanks Timbo.
  10. PickUrPoison Suspended

    Sep 12, 2017
    Sunnyvale, CA
    You’d probably be surprised how many entry-level Macs Apple sells. (You might also be surprised how man non-pros buy MBP.) 128GB is apparently sufficient for many. If you need more, it’s available. The “entry level should be moar” complaint is just a version of the “Macs are overpriced” complaint we’ve been hearing for 35+ years.
  11. KI45, Jul 24, 2019
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2019

    KI45 macrumors member

    Jun 5, 2017
    No its not, 1300 for a laptop with that specs is expensive in general but people who purchase Macs buy them generally for their reliability, the OS and the product design, even if they have to pay more than similar devices spec wise.

    We can argue whats a good starting price for a laptop with that specs or a Mac with that specs and wether they are overpriced or not, but thats a different argument than saying a product like that should have 256 at least considering how people use more storage nowadays and for a way to differentiate it to the Air for example.

    People who like Macs are gonna get one regardless and if they feel that 128 is not enough they will then upgrade but like i said in 2019 256 should come standard.
  12. lazybrowndog macrumors newbie


    May 26, 2016
    Mainz, Germany
    Well, I am a professional writer and I tested the new keyboard in Apple Stores since it first came out in 2016. I really wanted to love it but couldn't. Because of the little key-travel the keyboard feels like typing directly on the table. I also made much more mistakes, which breaks my concentration and is annoying.

    I also know two people who had their butterfly keyboard repaired three times.

    So last week I bought a MacBook Air 2017 - and guess what? I am absolutely happy with it. I am coming from a 2011 MBP 13, so everything is fast to me. Even the screen looks much better. The SSD is upgradeable with a drive from OWC and the battery is fixed with screws and can be replaced easily.

    I know the new MBP has much more power - but I am not so sure that I really need it. While I am typing this, the MBA is cool, activity monitor shows 90 percent idle, the battery remains at 100 percent since half an hour and I have not ever heard the fan. I will not cut 4k videos in the foreseeable future. I type. So yes, I will stay with this little machine until Apple unveils a better one.
  13. theluggage macrumors 601

    Jul 29, 2011
    ...but this isn’t the entry-level Macbook, it’s the entry-level Macbook Pro - and I was mainly responding to your argument about “pros” (whatever they are) using external storage or networks - so make up your mind.

    128G might be sensible for the base MacBook Air, but in anything further up, it looks like penny-pinching and planned obsolescence.
  14. PickUrPoison Suspended

    Sep 12, 2017
    Sunnyvale, CA
    Don’t be ridiculous. You’re making an artificial distinction between the customer base of MB/MBA, compared to MBP.

    There’s a huge amount of crossover of non-pros (home/consumer usage; those who don’t use their Mac to make their living) buying MBP, as well as pros (those who use their computer to earn their living; business/corporate) who buy MB/MBA.

    A home user who buys a $1,299 MBP may no more need internal storage greater than 64/128GB of screaming fast SSD as a business executive with a MB who spends the day connected to a file server.

    Buyers aren’t stupid. A corporate IT purchasing department—or a home user, for that matter—who buys a 128GB Mac, whether that’s a MB, MBA or MBP, is doing so because they don’t need (or want to pay for) a 256+GB internal boot drive.

    As I said in my post above (but that you deleted) complaints about insufficient base configs—not enough for you, maybe, but not generalizable to everyone else—is nothing more than a “Macs are too expensive” complaint.

    You want a 256GB base config MBP? Fine, that’s now a $1,499 entry level machine. No one pays less.

    You want a 512GB base config MBP? Fine, now we’ve got a $1,699 entry level MBP. No one pays less. No $1,299 128GB config, no $1,499 256GB config. How is that better for those who don’t want/need a 512GB SSD? Would that please you?

    No, of course that wouldn’t make you happy. Because you want a 512GB machine for $1,299. Guess what? Not going to happen. Macs are expensive, get over it.

    btw, this exact situation just played out with the Mac mini. People complained about 4GB, HDD and Fusion configs that used to be available for the mini. Ok, so Apple made the minimum config 8GB/128GB SSD, and raised the price for that config from $749 for the previous model to $799 for the new model.

    Some here complained that Apple raised the price on the mini from $499 to $799. Nope, not in the least. They just discontinued lower performing configs. (Which is fine, 8GB/128GB is an acceptable base config in 2019.)

    What you didn’t get was an 8/128 config for $499—because Apple doesn’t sell products at a loss. An 8/128 mini is a $799 machine. (As I mentioned, there was a $50 price increase, from $749 to $799, compared to the previous model, but that $50 bought a lot of increased performance and capabilities. And considering inflation, it’s actually a price cut.)
  15. theluggage macrumors 601

    Jul 29, 2011
    The most you can read into "pro" attached to a computer (if you credit it as anything more than marketing fluff) is "suitable for more than just general office productivity and communication". Sure, a lot of businesspeople will buy Airs because all they need is Office and email. A lot of home/consumer users will buy 'pro' machines because they're doing (or aspire to doing) more than just Facebook. It's about the capabilities of the computer - not the employment status of the user.

    My argument is not that 128GB fails to support my egotistical aspirations as a self-appointed "pro" - its that, in my experience, 128GB of storage in 2019 isn't "suitable for more than just general office productivity and communication"... and - also in my experience - for people who do just want a Mac for business/office/writing the MacBook Air has been the go-to choice for years (I'll give the new Air the benefit of the doubt, especially now its had a price cut).

    ...and neither of them necessarily need a quad-core processor, touch bar, retina display, more than 4GB of RAM or - for that matter - a laptop - especially the business executive who is tethered to a file server anyway. You're just cherry-picking SSD as something that 'not everybody needs' for the sake of argument.

    Seriously? The price difference between 128GB (link) and 256GB (link) of PCIe3x4 SSD (not talking about cheap SATA junk here) is about $20. That's retail price - so it includes a profit margin for the manufacturer, distributor and retailer. Apple are probably the biggest consumer of flash memory in the world so they won't pay close to that. Yes, Apple need to make a profit, but (unless you're Gordon Gekko) there is no justification on earth for the $200 they charge for an upgrade to 256GB.

    Samsung don't even bother to make a 128GB version of their PCIex4 SSD stick. Outside of the Apple bubble, less than 256GB is becoming false economy.

    No. I don't. I just want the base config to meet the reasonable minimum spec for 2019. Which, outside of the Apple bubble, is 256GB.

    Oh for crying out loud, the "previous model" of the Mac Mini was 4 years old - and a 256GB SSD in 2019 costs little more than a 1TB spinner did in 2014. There's no point in comparing the performance between 2014 and 2018 - what counts is the comparison with similar products in 208/9. (Fun fact - according to everymac.com the upgrade to 256GB SSD cost $200... in 2014 - apparently the price/performance of flash hasn't changed in 5 years in Apple land).

    ...and the big ruse that is that the "performance upgrade" of the new Mac Mini was achieved by switching from a mobile, 28W i5 to a cheaper, desktop 65W i3 processor. Yes folks, back in the real world low-power processors cost more than faster, hotter desktop ones. According to ark.intel.com the RRP of the i3 8100B is $133 and the nearest modern equivalent of the 2014 i5-4278U, the i5-8779U, is $330 (...and the other low-power options, which include the only 2-core ones that Intel bothers to make anymore, are $281). Obviously, that's not what Apple pays, but the relative prices are indicative. Switching to desktop processors may have been a sensible choice but its no justification for raising prices vs. more expensive mobile tech.

    ...but apparently, you can le a product whither for 4-5 years, update it, then con the fans into paying more money by waving around the performance comparisons with the hopelessly outdated old model (see also: Mac Pro).
  16. chucker23n1 macrumors 68020


    Dec 7, 2014
    Yeah, so?

    The Mac mini used to be available in a wider range of CPUs (cf. the 2012 revision, which had 35W and 45W choices). Then Intel no longer offered suitable parts, and Apple would have had to either make multiple different logic boards, or choose one TDP or the other. To the dismay of those who wanted something more powerful, they opted for the lower end, at 28W. OTOH, that means lower power draw.

    This time, they went for something higher.

    How is that a "big ruse"?

    Who's being "conned"? And has it occurred to you that not every Apple customer is a "fan"?
  17. theluggage macrumors 601

    Jul 29, 2011
    ...because they haven't gone for something "higher" - they've gone for something cheaper and yet still put up the price... Desktop processors deliver more bang for less buck.
  18. PickUrPoison, Jul 26, 2019
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2019

    PickUrPoison Suspended

    Sep 12, 2017
    Sunnyvale, CA
    Your whole argument boils down to “Macs are overpriced”. They’re not. But they are expensive, that is true.

    Apple charges $1,299 for an 8/128 MBP, $1,499 for an 8/256 and $1,699 for an 8/512. If you want 16/256 it’s $1,699, while the 16/512 costs $1,899. Apple could use any of those configs as the base config. They choose to set the entry level config at 8/128 so that users who don’t need more than that don’t have to pay more than $1,299 for what they need.

    If you want the base config to be 16/512, then the least expensive MBP a customer can buy is $1,899. Even if they’re only doing Facebook. (In reality they could actually make their margin at, who knows, maybe $1,599 or 1,699 if that were the minimum price for a MBP. But that price reduction is “paid for” by people that would have bought a $1,299 or $1,499 machine being forced to pay more by setting a higher floor.)

    Yes, that’s expensive. Macs are expensive, no argument there. Yes, people have been complaining about Apple’s pricing for 35+ years. They’re not overpriced, but they are high-priced. Get over it. If they’re not “worth it” to you, don’t buy them. Simple.

    btw, Apple’s component costs are not especially relevant; if the entire BOM were only $200 and it took a selling price of $1,899 for Apple to make its after tax target of 20% profit, then a selling price of $1,899 it shall be.

    Similarly, even if 128GB SSD only cost Apple $10, and 256GB cost them $20, they would still have a $200 difference in selling price. Whatever the costs, whatever the selling prices, Apple needs to have an average gross margin of 32% on whatever mix of configs customers ultimately purchase. That’s the only way—besides having high-margin services (further) subsidize hardware prices—they can achieve their target 20% after tax profit.
  19. KI45 macrumors member

    Jun 5, 2017
    Mine and most peoples arguments is that 256GB in laptops were options back then in 2012, with phones that have storage spaces of 128-256GB you cant have pro laptops that have 128GB storage as an option. Samsung don't even sell them at retail, lowest they do is 256.

    Even Ram is a 200$ price option, its like they put the lowest memory and storage options they can do and charged double for exactly double the amount you get in either. A better way to make profit was to also sell more of these and that could have been done with providing better specs that coincide with the times and improve the keyboard, actually provide the value that people want from Apple.

    I mentioned this before and you are correct, people who want a Mac and want more storage will buy it regardless and upgrade, its the principal of the matter.

    Back in 2012 i wanted a Mac with 16GB of Ram and at least 256 of storage, that wasnt an option back then if i recall so i ended up with an Air with 8/256 and in 2019 if u are getting a pro device i would recommend you go with the 16/256 option for sure.
  20. PickUrPoison, Jul 26, 2019
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2019

    PickUrPoison Suspended

    Sep 12, 2017
    Sunnyvale, CA
    The thing is, many users don’t have requirements for 256GB or greater storage. Having a 128GB option enables Apple to sell (and buyers to buy) at a lower price point.

    For instance, 128GB is a tremendous amount of storage for a novelist, and 16GB completely unnecessary. If a 16/256 were the entry level config, $1,699 (actually somewhat less since product line ASPs would skew higher) would be the cheapest 13” MBP available. That’s not good for customers, nor for Apple.

    As I mentioned in an earlier post, when Apple was still reporting unit sales, the average selling price (in the 2016-2018 timeframe) was in the $1,350-1,450 range. That tells you there are millions upon millions of entry level Macs being sold (including a ton of $999 8/128 MBA).

    What people don't like to hear is that the alternative to a $1,299 8/128 MBP is not a $1,299 16/256 MBP—it’s a $1,599 16/256 MBP. The higher the specs of the entry level machine, the higher the price. That makes sense, right?
  21. KI45 macrumors member

    Jun 5, 2017
    It does, but these are specs that have been around like i said since around 2012, as time goes on technology improves and some parts like Memory & Storage become cheaper if their technology generally stays the same. It made sense they were upgrade options back then because of their high prices and consumers were still shifting to them but now its not an excuse to still put them as the base model when the specs have become outdated.If that were the case make the base model an m3/4gb/64 with an even lower price point than 1.3K and sell more.

    My 8GB of rams are usually mostly taken and i mostly use my Air in browsing, watching videos, trading etc nothing to intensive, if you have some pics and a couple of apps and games installed that can easily take up close to 100GB easily. Like i said these were great base options back then, not anymore in my opinion.
  22. PickUrPoison, Jul 27, 2019
    Last edited: Jul 27, 2019

    PickUrPoison Suspended

    Sep 12, 2017
    Sunnyvale, CA
    But are the specs outdated?

    Take a look at the Dell Latitude 5400. It’s a 15W CPU, 14” FHD (1920x1080—yuck), 3.4lb laptop.

    They’ve got:

    i7-8665u/16GB/512GB M.2 NVMe for $1,883

    i7-8665u/8GB/128GB M.2 NVMe for $1,533

    i5-8265u/8GB/256GB M.2 NVMe for $1,263

    OK, fine. But they’ve also got what quite a few here on the MR forums would consider outdated tech, for example:

    i5-8365u/8GB/500GB SATA HDD for $1,293


    i5-8265u/4GB/500GB SATA HDD for $1,063


    i3-8145u/4GB/500GB SATA HDD for $903


    There’s no doubt that Dell has those i3, 4GB RAM and 500GB HDD models available for one reason and one reason only: price. But you can be sure that those low-end models sell sufficiently well to keep them around.

    I have no doubt that if Apple still had 4GB or “spinning rust” MacBook Pros available, some would be screaming bloody murder. Even if it were only $900. (You should have seen the complaints about the 4GB, HDD and Fusion drive SKUs Apple used to have for the previous Mac mini—even though they were priced starting at $499. So fine, now 8/128 is entry level, but consequently the mini now starts at $799. And of course, people screamed.)

    Point being, just because you see 8/256 as a minimum config, that’s not the reality for others. If Apple offered an 8GB/500GB HDD MBP for $999 I’m sure they’d sell quite a few. But it would be a low margin SKU, and would cannibalize the $1,299 8/128 model, where Apple makes decent margin. So it’s not available.
  23. KI45, Jul 27, 2019
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2019

    KI45 macrumors member

    Jun 5, 2017
    You have a point there but my argument was mainly comparing MacBooks and their evolution over time, i am not comparing them with products from other companies. But if we are the 1263$ has 256 and 8GB of ram that is expandable. It does have a lower GPU and a close cpu but like i said thats another conversation when were are talking about Windows laptops.

    If i am getting one, i would prob get a 13 inch one that is the thinnest with the lowest storage and ram i can get and upgrade accordingly when an amazon deal pops up. It's a totally different thing than getting a Mac, but i get what ur saying that other companies offer close specs with similar prices, which makes the Macs a way better value for a variety of reasons.
  24. PickUrPoison Suspended

    Sep 12, 2017
    Sunnyvale, CA
    You’re right, being upgradable does change the equation with respect to purchasing decisions, especially for techies. I imagine a fair number of those lower-end configs will be getting relatively inexpensive upgrades sooner or later. No doubt, like you, some specifically buy the lowest config knowing they can do low-cost upgrades later.

    (I’ve done exactly the same thing, I remember picking up some cheap Dell 4600/4700 mini-towers 15+ years ago for $299/399—one of which I still fire up occasionally when I need a Windows 7 box).

    But we’re more of an edge case than you might think; most (easily 90+ percent) will never update a desktop or laptop in its lifetime. Especially from a business or pro perspective, those customers rarely buy less than they need with the idea of upgrading later.

    btw I don’t really disagree with you; I’d like a higher end config for the same price or lower, and I’d love to have upgradable CPU/RAM/HDD. Relatively expensive base configs and soldered parts are certainly not my personal preference.

    But I do understand why Apple does what they do. They’re a huge company, with a certain cost structure driven by things like the upwards of $1.5 billion per month(!) in R&D expenditures. They’re never going to participate in a “race-to-the-bottom” commodity PC industry where cutthroat players earn minimal profits, or even lose money in a bad year.

    I’ve seen usable PC laptops for $300-400; sure they don’t have the greatest of specs and they probably won’t last to the 5-year mark, but they’re usable (and much more affordable than a $1,099 MacBook Air). Apple has no interest in trying to compete in that market, just as they willing cede the $50-400 smartphone market to others.
  25. KI45, Jul 28, 2019
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2019

    KI45 macrumors member

    Jun 5, 2017
    True, thats why when we started talking about other brands or windows PCs in general i said that was an entirely different thing because like u said Apple don't compete there, and u are correct that people generally don't upgrade or don't like to do it themselves. They use a device for a couple of years and sell it or give it to a family member or keep it as a second device or something.

    Maybe i had different expectations to reality but that came mainly from a couple of things, the desktop i was using at the time, the Air i got and when i saw Razer put the NVIDIA GTX 765M in their 14inch in 2013. I thought by now Apple would have replaced the Air with a non fan model with some improvements [the MacBook] and they would hav put a stronger dedicated GPU in their Pros and the specs i choose at the time would have been the norm. In reality they are prob moving with the market and based on peoples usage and like u said they prob sell a ton of the base models.

    They are heading in the right direction though, when i upgrade my Air that will be my choice for sure.

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