New Apple MacBook Pro 14” and 16”: redesigned design, notched mini-LED screen and increased performance

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Martí Micolau
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During its October 18 keynote, Apple unveiled its new 14” and 16” MacBook Pro. Many things are changing on the design side with a notched screen and a completely revised chassis. Added to this are the promising SoCs M1 Pro and M1 Max.



Apple MacBook Pro 14 2021 (M1 Pro 8/14) Introductory price €2249


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  • LDLC 2 258,94
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  • Macway 2 749,00
  • Cdiscount 2
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How the 16 Apple MacBook Pro 2021 (M1 Pro 10/16) Price Chart Works


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  • LDLC 2 758,96
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  • eBay 2 749,00
  • Amazon 2 979,00
  • Boulanger.com 2
  • Rakuten 2 979,00
  • Macway 2 979,00
  • Ubaldi 2 979,00
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  • Cdiscount 2
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  • LDLC 2 988,95
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  • eBay 2 979,00
How the price table works

The MacBook Pro M1 announced in 2020 had a lot of talk about it and its ARM architecture which offers excellent performance, but some users regretted the absence of a large screen model or the lack of RAM. After months of all kinds of rumors and many questions about future MacBooks, now Apple is providing the expected answers with the presentation of two new models: the MacBook Pro M1 Pro and M1 Max in 14” and 16” versions.


M1 Pro and M1 Max: new ultra-fast SoCs


© Apple

To power its two new laptops, Apple has developed two chips named M1 Pro and M1 Max. Still engraved in 5 nm, they are larger than the M1 chip unveiled last year. This overweight is due to the integration of more calculation blocks - processor, graphics, artificial intelligence, video - in order to offer much faster chips, but still energy efficient compared to the competition, we promises Apple. These chips are also again accompanied by a RAM housed at their side, a technology called unified memory. This memory is also faster and pushes the RAM capacity to a maximum of 64 GB (optional). As many points as we detail in a dedicated article.

The SSD housed inside these latest laptops is listed as operating at 7,4 GB/s. In other words, Apple has swapped the PCIe 3.0 SSD of old Macs for a PCIe 4.0 SSD, as we find more and more on desktop computers – but this is a first on a laptop as far as we know. . The capacity of this SSD starts at 512 GB and can reach 8 TB as an option.

These chips, as well as various improvements allow Apple to claim even better autonomy than on the first generation MacBook M1s. The 14” MacBook Pro would thus be able to last 17 hours in video playback and the stopwatch would climb to 21 hours on the 16” version. A fast charging system is also on the program with the ability to store 50% battery in 30 minutes, which is almost enough to last a day's work.


A changing design and the disappearing Touch Bar


© Apple

In terms of design, the 14” and 16” MacBook Pros retain a monolithic 100% recycled aluminum chassis. The screen edges, on the other hand, are much thinner (3,5 mm) and a notch appears at the very top. This accommodates a light sensor and the webcam. Apple ensures that macOS has been designed to manage this notch which is no higher than the menu bar. Incidentally, we appreciate that the webcam is finally evolving, leaving aside the aging 720p model in favor of a 1080p Full HD specimen. On the other hand, the Face ID technology allowing you to unlock your computer by facial recognition is still not present. The manufacturer also explains that this webcam is made up of four lenses in order to obtain an f/2 aperture and thus avoid noise in dark environments.


© Apple

The dimensions are for the 14” version, 31,26 cm wide, 22,12 cm deep and 1,55 cm thick. For comparison, the 1” MacBook Pro M13 measures just under 1cm in width and depth (30,41 x 21,4 x 1,56cm). The weight is contained since the 14” version weighs 1,55 kg, conceding only 150 g to the lower one-inch model.



© Apple

The 16” version sees its dimensions almost unchanged compared to the 2019 series with Intel Core processor: 35,57 cm wide, 24,81 cm deep and 1,68 cm high. However, it takes a little fat with 2,1 kg for the M1 Pro version and 2,2 kg for the M1 Max version.


© Apple

Although present on the 13” version of the MacBook Air M1, the Touch Bar has been abandoned by Apple on its 14” and 16” MacBook Pros. The new keyboard is therefore identical to that of the iMac M1 presented earlier this year. It also has a Touch ID fingerprint sensor to unlock your session and switch users with a simple touch.


© Apple

Apple only keeps two colors for its 14” and 16” MacBook Pros, space gray and silver. We therefore do not find the extravagance of the colors of the latest iMacs, too bad.

(Finally) more extensive connectivity

Two USB-C ports on a “pro” model is not much. This is what was offered by Apple on its latest generations of laptops, but the manufacturer has reviewed its position and the 14” and 16” MacBook Pros now also include an HDMI 2.0 port (4K at 60 Hz) and an SDXC card reader. Welcome the good news!


Charging via MagSafe connector is back. © Apple

The MagSafe charger is also making a comeback in a third iteration to make connecting the cable easier. The power connector is thus magnetic – hence the name – and connects very quickly to the computer. It also prevents accidents: tripping over the charging cable does not cause the laptop to waltz, but only unplugs the wire, without damage. The Thunderbolt 4 / USB-C ports are three in number and are also Power Delivery compatible, thus allowing charging in this way. A universal aspect that can always help if you forget the MagSafe charging block.


© Apple

The audio part has also been revised with no less than six speakers for the 16” version, allowing, according to the manufacturer, to obtain 80% more bass and Dolby Atmos-certified spatial sound. Accompanying the 3,5 mm jack with management of high impedance headsets, three microphones also allow you to clearly hear the voice of the user – videoconference enthusiasts will appreciate.

A mini-led screen with notch


© Apple

Rumors in recent months have been of mini-led displays and, indeed, they will be found on MacBook Pros. Few consumer computers are equipped with this technology rather reserved for televisions, but its advantages are multiple, in particular a much higher maximum brightness, better contrast and wider coverage of the color space.

The 16” MacBook Pro is equipped with a 16,2” panel with a resolution of 3456 x 2234 px, while the 14” version is decked out with a 14,2” panel displaying 3024 x 1964 px. These two panels are ProMotion compatible and their refresh rate therefore varies according to use from 24 Hz to 120 Hz. Thanks to mini-LED technology, the brightness reaches peaks with 1000 cd/m² and peaks at 1600 cd/m² in HDR. The contrast is announced at 1:000, which we will not fail to check when it passes through our laboratories.


© Apple

All these elements are in any case welcome and widen the gap between MacBook Air M1 and MacBook Pro M1, which were ultimately (too) similar. We look forward to studying the performance of these new machines and will bring you a full test of them as soon as possible.

Apple MacBook Pro 14 2021 (M1 Pro 10/16)

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How the Apple MacBook Pro 16 2021 (M1 Max 10/32) Price Chart Works Launch Price €3850

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  • LDLC 3 858,95
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  • Rakuten 3 936,20
  • Mac Trader Spain 4
  • Macway 3 849,00
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  • LDLC 3 858,95
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How the price table works

Pricing starts at €2249 for the 14” MacBook Pro with its M1 Pro chip (14 GPU cores) and 512 GB of storage. The version with 16 GPU cores and 1 TB of storage is priced at €2749. The 16” MacBook Pro starts at €2749 with an M1 Pro and 512 GB of storage. To benefit from the M1 Max, you will have to pay 3849 €. And for those who are not afraid to sell one of their organs, know that the “all options” version of the MacBook Pro 16” is marketed at 6839 € (M1 Max chip with 32-block GPU, 64 GB of RAM and 8TB SSD). A trifle…

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