MacBook Pro Overview Updated May 17, 2017

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August 2010 - May 2017


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Apple finally updated its MacBook Pro range in October 2016 – the first major update since the original Retina models in 2012. The main changes include:

  • Skylake processors
  • Radeon Pro GPUs (15-inch models only)
  • Faster PCIe SSDs in capacities up to 2TB
  • Improved display, with greater brightness & contrast, and a wider color gamut
  • Four USB-C sockets incorporating Thunderbolt 3 (replacing all older ports except the headphone jack)
  • Touch Bar replacement for hardware function keys (a Retina OLED display)
  • Touch ID power button for log ins, Apple Pay
  • Larger Force Touch trackpad
  • 2nd-generation butterfly keyboard
  • Smaller and slimmer form-factor
  • Space Gray color option in addition to the usual silver

2016 MacBook Pro

The flagship is the 15-inch MacBook Pro with Touch Bar, available in two standard specs: a 2.6GHz Core i7 processor, Radeon Pro 450 GPU and 256GB PCIe SSD, and a 2.7GHz Core i7 processor with Radeon 455 GPU and 512GB PCIe SSD. This can be maxed-out with a build-to-order 2.9GHz i7 CPU, Radeon Pro 460 with 4GB memory and 2TB PCIe SSD. All models have 16GB RAM and four USB-C/Thunderbolt 3 ports. Pricing starts at $2399.

The 13-inch MacBook Pro with Touch Bar is also available in two models: a 2.9GHz Core i5 CPU, Intel Iris 550 GPU and 256GB PCIe SSD, and a 2.9GHz Core i5 SSD, the same Intel Iris 550 GPU and 512GB PCIe SSD. Both models have 8GB RAM. The maxed-out version offers a 3.3GHz i7 CPU, 16GB RAM and 1TB PCIe SSD, but there’s no option for a discrete GPU. All models have four USB-C/Thunderbolt 3 ports. Pricing starts at $1799.

Additionally, Apple launched a new 13-inch MacBook Pro without the Touch Bar, with a 2GHz i5 CPU, Intel Iris 540 GPU, 256GB PCIe SSD and just two USB-C/Thunderbolt 3 ports.

Older models

Premiered in 2012 as a successor to the MacBook Pro, the MacBook Pro with Retina Display is sold in 13.3″ (2560×1600-pixel) and 15.4″ (2880×1800-pixel) versions.

Non-Retina models (discontinued)

First released in 2006 and last redesigned in 2008, the non-Retina MacBook Pro was at one time known as the ‘MacBook,’ and remained on sale right up until the launch of the 2016 models.

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Read below for all of our MacBook Pro coverage

MacBook Pro Stories May 17

AAPL: 150.25

-5.22
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A few weeks ago we reviewed Aukey’s USB-C to HDMI Cable for the MacBook Pro. It worked, but since it featured HDMI 1.4, it only allowed for connecting to 4K displays at 30Hz max.

While such an adapter works well for watching movies with lesser refresh rates, 30Hz is not the ideal refresh rate for working on a computer monitor. Such a refresh rate can often lead to headaches and eyestrain, not to mention the choppiness and laggy cursor movement.

Accell’s new USB-C adapter promises to address this issue by including HDMI 2.0. How is this possible when USB-C only supports HDMI 1.4b? Watch our hands-on video inside for the details. expand full story

MacBook Pro Stories May 16

AAPL: 155.47

-0.23
Stock Chart

WWDC 2017 may be quite the hardware event this year despite the recent focus on software alone in recent years. iPad Pro updates and a possible Siri speaker have already been rumored, and now Bloomberg reports a MacBook Pro update will happen:

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MacBook Pro Stories May 15

AAPL: 155.70

-0.40
Stock Chart

I recently got my hands on the Atomos Ninja Inferno external recorder and monitor for my Panasonic GH5. This 7-inch monitor allows you to record 4K video directly to 2.5-inch SATA SSDs. It’s a wonderful tool for my video workflow, because it allows for extra long recording times, and fast data transfers to my Mac.

The only problem is that the external monitor doesn’t ship with the needed USB-enabled caddy for transferring data from the SSD to my MacBook Pro. Atomos sells a docking station, but it’s limited to USB-A connections.

That’s where StarTech’s wonderful USB-C to SATA adapter comes in. This inexpensive adapter makes it super-easy to transfer data from a SATA-enabled SSD to the MacBook Pro via USB-C. Watch our hands-on video inside for the details. expand full story

9to5toys 

MacBook Pro Stories May 12

AAPL: 156.10

2.15
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Satechi has just announced the availability of its take on the USB-C hub for the 2016 MacBook Pro. While USB-C ports may be standard in a few years, today they’re just not, and many creatives still rely on external hubs to get their work done. Satechi’s new aluminum Type-C Pro Hub will bring back the ports and expansion power users need.

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MacBook Pro Stories May 2

AAPL: 147.51

0.93
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Mantiz’s Venus is an upcoming eGPU box and docking station for Thunderbolt 3-enabled laptops like the 2016 MacBook Pro. The Taiwanese-based company is working on bringing two eGPU boxes to market — the eccentric-looking Saturn, and the more subdued-looking Venus.

The friendly folks at Mantiz agreed to send over a Venus eGPU/docking station, allowing me to take it for a quick test drive when paired together with my 13-inch 2016 MacBook Pro. Featuring an all-aluminum outer shell with classic Mac Pro cheese grater-inspired perforated design, the Venus is one of the more attractive eGPU solutions that I’ve seen thus far. Have a look at our hands on video walkthrough inside for more details. expand full story

From 9to5Toys:

Ever since Apple made the decision to leave the display game (and subsequently return), we’ve seen an abundance of new releases from brands like Philips, LG and others trying to fill the void. Today, one of those major players is returning with another fresh announcement.

LG has quietly unveiled a new 42.5-inch 43UD79-B 4K IPS monitor with its FreeSync technology. Designed as a slightly more budget-friendly alternative to its UltraFine 5K display, this release has a few special tricks up its sleeve. Most notably is the inclusion of four HDMI inputs as well as support for USB-C connectivity. All this comes in at a sub $700 price tag…

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