- Large touchpad
- Muscular configuration
- Touch Bar
We don’t like
- Unsuitable connectors
- Less good autonomy
- Noisy keyboard
Make no mistake, this is a new MacBook Pro 15, although visually only the XXL touchpad betrays it. A great innovation, as is the more muscular configuration that takes place at the heart of the machine. However, despite less energy-consuming elements, this MacBook Pro manages to lose autonomy. Finally, it retains two faults of the previous model: its keyboard is noisy and its connectivity too limited. It remains a good machine, but one that does not have sufficient arguments to replace the MacBook Pro 15 of 2016.
Apple’s portable fleet has been updated. Largely modernized in 2016 with, among other things, the appearance of the TouchBar and TouchID, the 15-inch MacBook Pro is back with new innovations.
We should not expect an explosion of new products either. Recall that the previous MacBook Pro was only released eight months ago. Also, this is more of a technical update, but a few surprises have crept in. It remains to be seen whether the game is worth the effort or whether we can be satisfied with the already very powerful and attractive MacBook Pro of 2016.
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Yes, because it has an XXL touchpad
Closed, it is quite possible to confuse the MacBook Pro 15 of 2017 with that of 2016. The finish is identical, like the measurements or the weight, to the nearest gram. It is necessary to raise its hood to distinguish the first specificity of this new model. Placed under the keyboard, it takes the form of a very large 18.5 cm wide touchpad.
Like the previous MacBook Pro, it does not click, which can be confusing at first. However, its Force Touch offers a good haptic feedback to illusion and above all to provide additional functions depending on the pressure exerted.
With an XXL touchpad, you would think that the typing would be disturbed by the involuntary movements of the mouse, the palms resting on it, but it is not.
In the end, we gain in comfort of use with this new generation touchpad, especially for zooming or scrolling through virtual offices. But those who will sing the most praise are the users of editing software like Final Cut or Photoshop.
No, because his keyboard is always noisy
This was one of the complaints made in the 2016 version: the keyboard was noisy. Apple has not corrected the problem with the 2017 MacBook Pro. The second generation butterfly mechanisms still generate a thud and more serious noise than other Apple keyboards.
As for typing, it’s up to everyone to make up their own mind. Inherited from the MacBook, the keys are very fine, enough to limit the thickness of the machine. In use, this manifests itself in a very short, almost non-existent and very disturbing stroke, especially for those accustomed to mechanical models. It’s not unpleasant either, but this keyboard requires training to be used effectively.
No, because its connection is too avant-garde
Apple has not touched the measurements of the MacBook Pro 15, it is the same for its connectivity. So we get stuck between four USB-C ports and a minijack output. The SD card port did not reappear, as did the MagSafe power connector, which offered good protection with its magnetic system. USB side, it is therefore necessary to have adapters or a compatible HUB in order to use its peripherals, devices in USB-C are not yet legion.
Yes, because it is even more powerful
If visually the MacBook Pro 15 is little renewed, this is not the case with its configuration which has been updated with the latest components available, including Intel’s Kaby Lake processors. The model we had in test is the most expensive of the range. Billed € 3,299, it is powered by a Core i7 clocked at 2.9 GHz (7820HQ). Coupled with 16 GB of RAM, it reaped excellent results under GeekBench, placing itself obviously in front of all other Apple laptops, even surpassing some 27-inch iMacs, except those in Core i7 released this year.
Whatever task is allocated, it will be effective. The 16 GB of RAM are there to streamline tasks, just like the new SSD and its speed of 3 GB / s. The graphic part is also evolving. Still supplied by AMD, it contains a Radeon Pro 560 chip. Compared to the Radeon Pro 450 and 455 available in 2016, the power gain is quite substantial despite the change in generation. However, the Pro 560 is a much more energy-efficient graphics card. In use, it will not allow the latest big video games to run with all the visual parameters to the maximum, but by being more moderate, these games are fluid in 1080p.
No, because he has lost autonomy
Apple hasn’t changed batteries in eight months. The new MacBook Pro 15 is therefore still equipped with a 76 Wh battery. One would have thought that the integration of the thrifty Radeon Pro 560 could have favored it, but this is not the case. On Netflix, so connected via Wi-Fi with the brightness at 50%, it takes just under eight hours. A nice score, but which does not manage to equal the 9 hours of the 2016 edition. A challenge given the few modifications made between the two models.
However, we must put this result into perspective, which remains in the high average of this category of computers.