data sheet, price and reviews
A few weeks late, Apple finally unveiled the second generation of 14- and 16-inch MacBook Pros in January 2023. The recipe does not change much compared to the first one, but due to more efficient chips, there is a speed of execution. This is also the spearhead of the technical report. But other notable assets are now in play. Let’s check.
1 – Performance
Therefore, first of all, it is the processors that allow you to distinguish MacBook Pro 2023 from its predecessors. Apple has chosen here to bet on the M2 Pro and M2 Max chips, which the user can configure only at the time of purchase. The base version of the M2 Pro features a ten-core CPU with a sixteen-core graphics card and a sixteen-core Neural Engine. As for the most powerful M2 Max, its CPU goes to twelve cores for thirty-eight for the GPU.
For this, of course, it will be necessary to add a certain amount of RAM. The minimum is 16GB with the M2 Pro chip, which can go up to 96GB by upgrading to the M2 Max. This feature cannot be changed after ordering a MacBook Pro.
On the charging side, the 2023 MacBook Pros come with a 67-watt USB-C power adapter. However, this only applies to the slowest models, as the 16-inch MacBook Pro with the M2 Max chip automatically comes with the same accessory, but at 140 watts.
2 – High quality screens
The 2023 MacBook Pro comes in two sizes. First, it comes with a diagonal of 14.2 inches, as opposed to 16.2 inches for the largest. On the pure definition side, it will be 3,024×1,964 pixels and 3,456×2,234 pixels respectively. Brightness maxes out at 1600 nits, but keep in mind that this is an exponential factor in power consumption.
Also, know that the two screens of the MacBook Pro 2023 are equipped with True Tone technology, which adjusts colors to the environment to make the owner’s eyes less strained. Night mode is also a part of it. Finally, Apple thought of an adaptive refresh rate of up to one hundred and twenty frames per second. This makes playing video games with Apple Arcade or other services even more attractive.
It should be noted that Apple is also launching a version of the MacBook Pro with the M2 chip and without the notch.
3 – The autonomy of the 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pros
From 2023, the 14-inch MacBook Pro and 16-inch MacBook Pro come with a big upgrade: their durability. Indeed, the 14-inch MacBook Pro now offers twelve hours of wireless web browsing battery life versus eleven hours for its predecessor. As for the 16-inch MacBook Pro, it will now have fifteen hours on the clock. Enough to make a good day’s work.
Of course, these numbers remain estimates obtained by Apple in the laboratory. The use of each may change the contract. However, there is not much difference between M2 Pro and M2 Max on the power consumption side.
4 – Memory options for 2023 MacBook Pros
When ordering a new MacBook Pro, you’ll also need to choose internal storage. There is no traditional hard drive here, but an SSD that allows you to run programs faster. Here again, it is not possible to change the option after purchase, but as we will see later, there are USB ports for connecting accessories to external memory if necessary.
In general, customers have a choice between:
- 512 GB SSD
- 1 TB SSD
- 2 TB SSD
- 4 TB SSD
- 8 TB SSD
Be careful, though, because the 512GB MacBook Pro 16-inch isn’t available with the M2 Max chip in 2023.
5 – Design, dimensions and weight
Now let’s move on to the issue of design. Without a doubt, MacBooks are among the best on the market. The only negative and not least: the weight, quite heavy. Here we are talking about more than 2 kilograms for the 16-inch MacBook Pro and about 1.6 kilograms for the 14-inch MacBook Pro. Also note that the M2 Max motherboard adds a few grams to the scale, but it’s negligible.
The shell of the MacBook Pro 2023 is made of aluminum. There is an advantage and a disadvantage here. The advantage is ecological, because the material is recycled. On the other hand, it is also very fragile: it is enough to knock the MacBook Pro a little to register it. However, this is a factor that can lower the price of a trade.
As for sheer dimensions, the 2023 14-inch MacBook Pro measures 1.55cm x 31.26cm x 22.12cm. The 2023 16-inch MacBook Pro is thicker (1.68 cm) and larger than an A4 sheet: 35.57 cm x 24.81 cm. The bezels around the screen are quite thin, especially with the notch at the top turning the camera around. It’s not very aesthetic, and we know that Apple is also working on sensor technology under the screen, but that will come later.
The MacBook Pro 2023 is a pleasure to use on a daily basis. The touch is soft and smooth, without the slightest obstruction. Small pads under the cover also prevent the laptop from sliding when placed on a flat surface. As for the various ports for connecting peripherals or charging the device, these are located on both sides of the keyboard, on the two left and right edges. This is more practical than the rear-mounted hatches, as many competitors do.
6 – Smart keyboard
Now let’s talk about the keyboard specifically. The Touch Bar hasn’t been available on MacBook Pros for some time now. Instead, users can use traditional function keys which do the same job very well. You can adjust the screen brightness, mute the sound or even show an overview of all open applications in macOS in a blink of an eye.
The button is also dedicated to Touch ID. To register a fingerprint in the system, just place your finger on it. After that, you can use it to unlock the computer without typing your password. As with the third-generation iPhone SE, it works very well on the MacBook Pro 2023. Note that the escape key is also included to finish with the keyboard, for example to quickly exit full-screen mode.
7 – MacBook Pro 14 and 16 inches: link
On the networking side, the 2023 MacBook Pros offer an entirely new standard: Wi-Fi 6E. This is said to offer better speeds than Wi-Fi 6, which is very practical when watching series with Netflix or Apple TV+. As a bonus, Apple chose this time to bet on Bluetooth 5.3, which consumes less energy and is faster for wirelessly transferring files between devices.
Apple also offers its own AirDrop solution for sending documents. It uses Wi-Fi and works only with other devices of the same brand: iPhone, iPad or Mac. Speed is the order of the day; with a good connection, it only takes a few seconds for a 100MB photo folder to be fully functional.
However, unlike iOS mobile phones, 2023 MacBook Pros do not offer satellite connectivity: you must have an access point nearby to access the internet. Unlike some iPads, the case also lacks a SIM card port. This is quite unfortunate. Also, know that a modem made by a subcontractor is very effective in the city. Elsewhere, it depends on your access provider, but Apple’s hardware always does.
8 – 2023 MacBook Pro camera and sound
The 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pros from 2023 are equipped with a front-facing camera, so it is cut with a notch. It offers 1080p resolution, which is quite limited but sufficient for video. Unfortunately, the Centered Frame functionality of iPads or Studio Screen is not included. It’s a shame, especially at this price.
On the audio side, the speakers work very well. It’s the best sound we’ve seen in any laptop we’ve tested in the last five years. A speaker is installed on each side, right and left of the keyboard. We regret that a very high level of warning is not provided to protect the health of users.
9 – MacBook Pro 2023 slots
2023 MacBook Pros come with USB-C sockets for connecting third-party accessories, although it is recommended to prefer the Apple brand for this. An HDMI plug for your external monitors is also included, but we don’t understand the manufacturer’s choice as most display manufacturers have now moved to a universal standard.
Same for charging: you’ll have to deal with the MagSafe slot here. It must be admitted that it is very practical with a magnet, which will not damage the port if mishandled. But that also means you won’t be able to get the cable from anyone, and given the price of the equipment, that’s a real shame.
10 – macOS Ventura and its applications on MacBook Pro
All 2023 MacBook Pros, whether 14-inch or 16-inch, come with macOS Ventura. This version is the most advanced version of Apple’s custom operating system at the time of release. Several very handy applications are automatically installed, such as the iWork suite, which includes the Pages word processor, Numbers spreadsheet, and PowerPoint-like Basic applications.
With the MacBook Pro 2023, Apple is also emphasizing security. Thus, it is quite difficult to install services that are not from the App Store, which theoretically prevents you from encountering viruses. Users also rarely install antivirus. With iCloud, the editor even offers end-to-end encryption for files synced online. And this at no extra cost.
macOS Ventura is also seamlessly integrated with the rest of the Apple ecosystem. Thanks to the Handoff function, you can, for example, start watching a series on Apple TV with your iPhone and continue immediately on your MacBook Pro 2023 without interrupting the audio or video stream for a second. We can also mention AirPlay, which launches Spotify or Apple Music playlists in the blink of an eye on HomePod or AirPods Pro.
11 – Conclusion: our opinion
So what do we think of the 2023 14-inch MacBook Pro and 16-inch MacBook Pro? No doubt they are real nuggets. These are the fastest Apple laptops on the market. The screens are great, especially the big 16-inch screen. We regret the very compact format for only 14 inches, as well as the thickness than the 16-inch MacBook Pro with an Intel chip.
MacBook Pro 2023