New MacBook Pro Has Better Keyboard Than 12-Inch MacBook, But It's Expensive and Lacking Ports

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Apple provided the media with demo units of the new MacBook Pro sans Touch Bar, and a handful of websites have now published their early thoughts and first impressions about the 13-inch notebook. The articles reveal some interesting tidbits beyond yesterday's Touch Bar model hands-on and first impressions roundups.


While the new MacBook Pro's keyboard is a controversial topic, with some users preferring Apple's traditional scissor design, most reviews said Apple's second-generation butterfly mechanism offers an improved typing experience compared to the 12-inch MacBook's first-generation butterfly keyboard.

Brian Heater of TechCrunch said the keyboard "feels more natural" and that individual keys have "better give":
The new technology certainly marks a step in the right direction. The process feels more natural, and the keys have better give. I still prefer the tactile feel of older keyboards, but a lot of that may just have to do with familiarity. After all, the device was only announced yesterday.
Jim Dalrymple at The Loop echoed that sentiment, noting there is "a little more travel distance when you press down on a key":
It seems to me that there is a little more travel distance when you press down on a key with the newer keyboard. I actually like that a bit better. After using both, the MacBook keys didn't have enough travel. This one feels much better to me.

Stuart Miles of Pocket-lint said the new keyboard is sandwiched between "louder, clearer, and cleaner" speakers with bass-heavier sound:
The keyboard is now sandwiched between two speakers that run the height of the keyboard and deliver a louder, clearer, cleaner noise which is considerably more rounded and bassy than the previous outings. That's achievable because Apple has changed the speaker technology moving away from bouncing the sound off the display, instead placing the direct firing speakers either side of the keyboard.
Likewise, Heater said the speakers deliver richer sound than before, noting that "things get loud. Really, really loud."
They're good for casual listening and maybe an episode or two of a TV show. Anything longer than that, I would go with a pair of headphones or Bluetooth speaker. Also things start to deteriorate when things hit top volume.
Dan Ackerman at CNET said the new non-Touch Bar MacBook Pro might be "the new default MacBook for most people," although its price is disappointing:


Meanwhile, Andrew Cunningham at Ars Technica highlighted the new MacBook Pro's brighter display and wider DCI-P3 color gamut:
Both screens are 2560×1600 and 227 PPI, the same resolution and density as the old design, though the screens are brighter and support the DCI-P3 color gamut, which is increasingly becoming the norm for Apple's devices.
Cunningham added that the new MacBook Pro scales to 1,440×900 pixels out of the box, which makes it look like it has a higher screen resolution:
The new 13-inch MacBook Pro support four display scaling modes: 1024×600, 1280×800, 1440×900, and 1680×1050. The old Pros used the 1280×800 mode out of the box, which just happened to match the display's native resolution. The new Pros use the 1440×900 mode out of the box, which means they look like they have a higher screen resolution even though they don't.
Cunningham said making comparisons between the new MacBook Pro and MacBook Air is "understandable but flawed." He argued "it's only really a comparison that works when all else is equal," which is not the case given the new MacBook Pro is upwards of $500 more expensive than the remaining 13-inch MacBook Air.


Dana Wollman at Engadget applauded the new MacBook Pro's smaller footprint, particularly compared to the MacBook Air:
Let's start with the design: Holy moly, is this thing small. I noticed it right away, just because my normal work laptop is a MacBook Air, which means I'm used to something much larger than this. The difference is especially obvious if you stack one machine on top of the other. Though both have 13.3-inch screens, the new MacBook Pro has a much smaller footprint -- it's shorter and less wide. Truly, trimming down that humongous bezel from the Air makes a world of difference.
One aspect of the new MacBook Pro often criticized is its lack of ports. The non-Touch Bar model has only two Thunderbolt 3 ports, which carry power, USB, DisplayPort, HDMI, and VGA for video out over a single port. As with the 12-inch MacBook, customers will have to purchase adapters to connect certain devices and accessories.

Steve Kovach at Business Insider said the need for "a lot of dongles" is "the most frustrating thing" about the new MacBook Pro:
If you want to use older accessories or even charge your iPhone, you're going to need to buy a separate adapter or brand-new cable. That's going to be super annoying for a lot of people as the industry continues to shift to USB-C. For example, the cable that lets you charge your iPhone in the MacBook Pro will cost you $25. Yikes.
The new MacBook Pro is also expensive, although the non-Touch Bar model is slightly more affordable at $1,499. The non-Touch Bar model is currently available for pre-order and ships in 1 business day. Touch Bar models start at $1,799 and $2,399 for the 13-inch and 15-inch models respectively and ship in 4-5 weeks.

Article Link: New MacBook Pro Has Better Keyboard Than 12-Inch MacBook, But It's Expensive and Lacking Ports
 

thisisnotmyname

macrumors 68020
Oct 22, 2014
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"Older accessories." I'm sure many will think that sounds harsh but the world will follow suit and USB-C will become the norm on PCs as well.
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Not to mention graphics power that is years behind, even in the top of the line $4k 15"er. To bump up the little 13"er pushes you close to $2500.

wtf/.

Now that the App Store is saturated and no longer highly profitable, the need for a mac is thankfully pretty much gone.
Years behind what? Specialty gaming laptops?
 

macsrcool1234

macrumors 65816
Oct 7, 2010
1,442
1,805
The stupidity/absurdity of the ports is the only reason I didn't order one.

Keep the headphone jack out of the iPhone but leave it in the Macbook, continue to use the garbage known as Lightning in iPhone rather than USB-C....do they just roll dice and arrive at these nonsensical decisions?
 
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alksion

macrumors 68000
Sep 10, 2010
1,703
102
Orange County CA
I like my MacBook keyboard because it's a lot better than my iPad. I essentially got the new MacBook to replace my iPad because I wanted a physical keyboard but I did not want the "clunkiness" of a MacBook Pro.

I have a more powerful desktop iMac, which suits my needs for the heavier tasks. On the other hand, if I was looking for a portable laptop to be both powerful and portable, I might not be too happy with the butterfly keyboard as my main driver.
 

LillieDesigns

macrumors 6502
Oct 18, 2005
323
56
Los Angeles
Been on a mac for 13+ years now and have owned every iPhone since the original. I was due for an iPhone 7 and a new notebook this year and have been mind-numbingly underwhelmed by both keynotes so far this season.

I know it's been beat to death, but the biggest issue for me is the lack of ports and need for dongles on both devices. It's impractical and I can't help but feel I just happened to land in the beginning stages of a shift in the industry and everything I buy now will be looked back on as a mediocre hybrid of the past and future in terms of tech.

Still not sold on Windows or Android devices though. Kind of at a stand still and will most likely wait it out with my 128 gb base level 2013 MBA and my iPhone 6...which blows.

I wanted to spend my money Apple, just not that much for so little.
 

Three141

macrumors 6502
Jan 1, 2016
391
323
London
I'm surprised people are surprised about the price hike.
I thought fans were going to hammer them for not being consistent with their headphone jack decision, graphics card choice, no 32gb ram option and not at least updating the MBA screen which is criminal at this point.

Less ports is trade mark Apple.
 

neosupreeth

macrumors newbie
Feb 13, 2011
19
29
Should have the dongle for accessories as part of the packaging. Its not generally used, but when it is needed, users shouldn't have to shell out additional amount. Also, how tough is it to have a mag safe add on to the port? Wouldn't that make it best of both worlds? The worst part with all new systems, you cannot upgrade. Its fast, its great, but then you are forced to change in 5 years. Not the same with old macs. I have '10 macbook pro, removed optical drive for SSD, need to add RAM. The bottleneck is now the processor. Core 2 duo.

Pretty expensive machines overall...







Apple provided the media with demo units of the new MacBook Pro sans Touch Bar, and a handful of websites have now published their early thoughts and first impressions about the 13-inch notebook. The articles reveal some interesting tidbits beyond yesterday's Touch Bar model hands-on and first impressions roundups.


While the new MacBook Pro's keyboard is a controversial topic, with some users preferring Apple's traditional scissor design, most reviews said Apple's second-generation butterfly mechanism offers an improved typing experience compared to the 12-inch MacBook's first-generation butterfly keyboard.

Brian Heater of TechCrunch said the keyboard "feels more natural" and that individual keys have "better give":Jim Dalrymple at The Loop echoed that sentiment, noting there is "a little more travel distance when you press down on a key":

Stuart Miles of Pocket-lint said the new keyboard is sandwiched between "louder, clearer, and cleaner" speakers with bass-heavier sound:Likewise, Heater said the speakers deliver richer sound than before, noting that "things get loud. Really, really loud."Dan Ackerman at CNET said the new non-Touch Bar MacBook Pro might be "the new default MacBook for most people," although its price is disappointing:


Meanwhile, Andrew Cunningham at Ars Technica highlighted the new MacBook Pro's brighter display and wider DCI-P3 color gamut:Cunningham added that the new MacBook Pro scales to 1,440×900 pixels out of the box, which makes it look like it has a higher screen resolution:Cunningham said making comparisons between the new MacBook Pro and MacBook Air is "understandable but flawed." He argued "it's only really a comparison that works when all else is equal," which is not the case given the new MacBook Pro is upwards of $500 more expensive than the remaining 13-inch MacBook Air.


Dana Wollman at Engadget applauded the new MacBook Pro's smaller footprint, particularly compared to the MacBook Air:One aspect of the new MacBook Pro often criticized is its lack of ports. The non-Touch Bar model has only two Thunderbolt 3 ports, which carry power, USB, DisplayPort, HDMI, and VGA for video out over a single port. As with the 12-inch MacBook, customers will have to purchase adapters to connect certain devices and accessories.

Steve Kovach at Business Insider said the need for "a lot of dongles" is "the most frustrating thing" about the new MacBook Pro:The new MacBook Pro is also expensive, although the non-Touch Bar model is slightly more affordable at $1,499. The non-Touch Bar model is currently available for pre-order and ships in 1 business day. Touch Bar models start at $1,799 and $2,399 for the 13-inch and 15-inch models respectively and ship in 4-5 weeks.

Article Link: New MacBook Pro Has Better Keyboard Than 12-Inch MacBook, But It's Expensive and Lacking Ports
 

jujufreeze

macrumors 6502a
Jan 7, 2016
511
532
I'm surprised people are surprised about the price hike.
I thought fans were going to hammer them for not being consistent with their headphone jack decision, graphics card choice, no 32gb ram option and not at least updating the MBA screen which is criminal at this point.

Less ports is trade mark Apple.
All of it together is just a toxic brew that's hard to take in
 

TMRJIJ

macrumors 68040
Dec 12, 2011
3,206
5,211
South Carolina, United States
USB-C is the norm now. More Powerful and efficient in every way compared to the other ports. I have no problem making the jump.
I don't buy dongles, I buy devices and there are a lot of old hardware and traditional hard drives in my room that will get dropped. The only thing old that I will keep will be the Macs I patch.