After Apple released the 2020 13″ MacBook Pro in May, it got me thinking about the primary laptop I have been using to operate my blog and online businesses for the last few years. Up until recently, I have been using a 2016 MacBook Pro.
In November, Apple’s new 16″ MacBook Pro launched and with it came the implementation of Apple’s new Magic Keyboard.
When this model launched in November, I hadn’t paid much attention to it because I had only recently returned from living overseas and I had other priorities. I was in the heart of readjusting to living here so upgrading my laptop was not on my radar.
Once I began to research the specs, I realized I had no idea how much of a powerhouse this Mac actually is in comparison to the versions preceding it. More recently, when I saw the 16″ Mac had gone on sale on Amazon, I finally decided to purchase it.
What better time to bite the nearly $3,000.00 bullet than amid a pandemic when you’re stuck at home working remotely, right?
All joking aside, the new MacBook Pro’s certainly aren’t cheap so I didn’t take the decision lightly. I will say I find the price warranted given how powerful it is. The 2019 rendition has all of the signs (and none of the red flags) that would lead me to believe that, unlike last time, this computer will legitimately serve me well for years to come.
In this blog post, I’ll share some of my thoughts now that I have upgraded to a newer and powerful computer and explain my opinion on whether or not I would recommend it for bloggers and other creative professionals.
If you aren’t using Apple’s Magic Keyboard, it’s time to upgrade.
First and foremost, when judging a computer, I prioritize the typing experience above all else.
While multi-core processing and excessive RAM are great for export times, I’ve come to realize those specs mean relatively little when you’re frustrated with your hardware.
In 2016, I bought the first Touch Bar MacBook Pro which also happened to be the first Pro series laptop to feature the new butterfly mechanism keyboard. Oh… what a mistake that was. While most aspects of that laptop were wonderful, typing was absolutely dreadful. As you can see in the photo above, I even broke a key at one point.
I compared the sensation of using it to typing against concrete. My fingers would ache after writing a few paragraphs from the low-travel, thin design. It has to be one of the worst keyboards (actually, not one of. The worst one*) I’ve ever used.
As so many others around the world have reported, the butterfly keyboard’s design is faulty by design. Even a spec of dust is enough to break a key. (Apple has since acknowledged it with the creation of their Keyboard Replacement Program.)
The Magic Keyboard is AMAZING.
I could immediately tell after using it for a few seconds that the magic keyboard is exactly what I was missing from my previous laptop.
The keys move. They press. They aren’t painful.
If I had to explain the experience of its sensation, the keys feel somewhere between the butterfly keys and the original scissor switch keys that Apple used prior to 2016. It’s this fabulous middle-ground where the keys are easy to press, but still move.
The butterfly switches were lackluster. Typing felt shallow and dull. It lacked spirit.
Bloggers, writers, and other content creators will love typing on this.
The computer is blazingly fast.
While everyone has their own uses for why they require a computer, I tend to do a lot of work between word processors, internet browsers, Adobe’s Creative Suite programs, and various other software for occasional video editing. I’ve found this laptop to be super fast at everything.
Videos export rapidly. The computer is able to juggle Photoshop, Lightroom, Illustrator, and InDesign like butter. It has enough RAM to hop between programs without stutters or crashes.
Admittedly, I went from using a dual core i5 to now using an 8-core i9 processor so the performance jump was to be expected. Except, I didn’t expect it to be as noticeable as it turned out to be. Also, a dedicated graphics card makes the world of a difference.
If you work using programs where you’re constantly exporting and hopping across programs you’ll love using the 16″ version.
The computer is also blazingly hot.
The new 16″ has an all new thermal architecture which allows for greater processing power. Apple redesigned the fans and built a 35% larger heatsink to boost airflow by 28%. Because of this improved cooling system, it’s able to deliver and sustain more power. So that all sounds great, right?
It’s great until you’re sitting outside on a hot summer day trying to use Photoshop and your laptop is radiating inferno-like hot air directly against your skin. So that mild inconvenience is the tradeoff you have to make for a powerful process, I suppose.
(Maybe Apple Silicon will fix that but that is likely still months away at the earliest.)
The screen size is perfection.
Apple made the bezels thinner on the 16″ version. The extra screen real estate is wonderful. One of my close friends recommended downloading a Mac app called Magnet which has really increased my productivity while working on this laptop. Take advantage of the space!
People will find it so much more comfortable to use since you can enlarge things and see everything so clearly on the bigger screen.
It’s not that heavy, honestly.
People love to complain when given the chance.
Anytime people on the internet ask if they should buy the 13″ or the 15/16″ version, the common piece of advice is to get the 13″ if portability is a concern for you. (I’ll admit it. It’s why I bought the 13″ the first time!)
Even if you travel with this laptop, the 16″ isn’t all that heavy…
As you can see, it is only slightly larger in total body size than my 2010 13″ unibody MacBook Pro! And it’s actually slightly lighter than my unibody MacBook Pro!
Heck, I carried that thing everywhere in high school and for 3/4 of my time in college. If I could lug that thing around, I shouldn’t have any issue with the 16″ MacBook Pro.
The price is high, but worth it.
For an everyday user, I probably wouldn’t recommend this laptop unless you either have money to burn or a need for higher-end specs. The base model costs $2,400 and the one I have normally sells for $2,800.
If you are going to be spending your time using it to do tasks like checking e-mails, watching YouTube or Netflix, or casual web browsing, there are other laptops on the market that are just as capable of those tasks selling for much less money. Although if you have the budget and can afford it, go right ahead and get it. You certainly will enjoy it.
If you’re a programmer, designer, developer, or video editor, you are going to love using this MacBook. Creative professionals will enjoy amazing color accuracy and double the storage space and RAM compared to the previous generation all for the same price!
It’s honestly a great value. A great time to buy.
This is the laptop I’ve been looking for.
Special thanks to my close friend who encouraged me to buy it when I was on the fence.
Not regretting my impulse buy one bit.
The speakers are unreal. The keyboard is a joy to type with. The battery life is up to 11 hours and it has the largest size battery legally allowed inside of an airplane. This laptop is amazing and if you can’t tell, I am totally obsessed and in love with it.
If you’re on the fence, take my word.
BUY THIS COMPUTER.
You will not regret it.