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Apple Macbook Pro 16-inch review: Everything you missed in the last Macbook, and more

If you didn’t buy the 15-inch Macbook Pro because of the reported keyboard or performance issues, Apple has a solution. While the company isn’t officially calling it a replacement, the new 16-inch Macbook Pro fixes a lot of the issues with its older counterpart and has a happy new addition.

First, Apple uses a more conventional keyboard now over the older butterfly mechanism now. It’s less prone to breakdowns and provides an excellent typing experience.

Apple has also reduced the size of the keycaps, improving better ‘pitch’ between the keys. That’s the distance between the centers of consecutive keycaps, which is essential to the science of making keyboards that are good for typing. Too high or too little pitch are both bad, but Apple is nearly spot on with this one.

It might take you a few hours to get used to the Macbook Pro’s keyboard, but a few hours is all it will take. Another essential change is the fact that the inverted T design for the arrow keys and the escape key are both back, which lowers the overall learning curve for using this keyboard.

The Macbook Pro isn’t necessarily meant for those who type a lot, but it’s certainly amongst the best for typists too.

The addition of the escape key though makes the Touch Bar slightly smaller than it used to be. That, however, makes little difference to the overall experience of using this laptop. The Touch Bar does have some handy shortcuts for many apps, it’s hard to find a critical use-case for it. It will perhaps take a few more years before the Touch Bar becomes absolutely essential.

What’s more important in the list of changes Apple made to the 16-inch Macbook Pro though is its thermal performance. The 15-inch version faced user complains about throttling, meaning the processor wouldn’t maintain its performance levels over prolonged periods.

On this one, Apple has changed the fan design and made a larger heat sink, which allows the laptop to remain cool when used for resource intensive tasks. As a result, you will get more sustained performance from the processor.

Our review unit has the 9th octa-core generation Intel Core i9 processor, coupled with an AMD Radeon Pro 5500M graphics processing unit (GPU). There’s also a hexa-core Intel Core i7 version for this device, with the Radeon 5300 GPU. According to Apple, it wants to gauge the demand in India before bringing in more SKUs to the country.

The Macbook Pro remains one of the most powerful laptops you can buy today. If your daily work schedule includes software like Adobe Premiere Pro, the Macbook Pro certainly fits your requirements. The overall performance gains over last year’s 15-inch Macbook are slight, meaning if your keyboard isn’t broken, you don’t need this one. However, Apple isn’t looking for people to upgrade their Macs every year either.

The 16-inch Macbook Pro is slightly more powerful than last year’s version, so if you’re buying a new laptop today, this is the one to go for. Especially since the prices remain unchanged, starting at Rs. 1,99,900. It’s also Rs. 10,000 cheaper on Amazon listings as of writing this review.

The improved keyboard and performance alone make this Macbook a better laptop than before, but Apple also packs in an impressive screen. To be clear, it’s not surprising from a Retina display from Apple, and it’s not very noticeably better than before. However, the fact that the 16-inch Macbook Pro has one of the most colour accurate screens is undeniable.

If you really think about it, were it not for the 15-inch Macbook Pro’s failings, this wouldn’t even be considered a new laptop. Having said that, the 16-inch Macbook Pro would take a comfortable spot near the top of any ‘best laptops for creators or power users list’. And we haven’t even mentioned out favourite aspect of this laptop yet – the speakers.

Companies often claim “improved” speakers on laptops, but they only really amount to slightly louder speakers. Not so for the Macbook Pro.

Apple has three speakers on either side, two of which are woofers that have been designed to cancel each other’s vibrations out. As a result, the laptop gets noticeably deeper bass than any laptop we have reviewed.

Some might say it’s not very loud, but the Macbook Pro is certainly loud enough for almost anything you will do on it. It doesn’t deliver speaker quality audio, but watching a movie or even a video you just edited to perfection will be much more satisfactory on this laptop than any other.

In sum, the 16-inch Macbook Pro is certainly a laptop that power users and creators should consider. It’s expensive, but so are most of its competitors. For creators, the Macbook Pro 16-inch is an investment and given that it’s not a laptop you will need to update yearly, it’s worth buying.

Source: Livemint