Apple has debuted a super-powerful new MacBook Pro in 14 and 16-inch versions. The Touch Bar is no more, replaced by function keys again and in many ways, this Mac goes back in time with MagSafe charging returning too (thankfully you can still charge via Thunderbolt). Both will be available with the redesigned M1 Pro and M1 Max processors which have some formidable raw specs.
M1 Pro has up to 10 core CPU and a 16 core graphics unit. It’s around 70 per cent faster than last year’s M1 chip inside the MacBook Air, 2020 MacBook Pro, Mac Mini and 2021 iMac. M1 Pro adds a ProRes accelerator meaning faster and more power-efficient video processing than with M1.
M1 Max is available with up to 64GB of memory and has a 10 core CPU and 32 core graphics. It boasts four times the graphics performance of last year’s M1 chip. Apple says that M1 Max offers an enhanced media engine with two ProRes accelerators, meaning that you can edit 30 simultaneous streams of 4K ProRes video or up to seven streams of 8K ProRes video in Apple’s Final Cut Pro software.
That’s more powerful than Apple’s high-end 28-core Mac Pro with an Afterburner graphics card.
Most of the talking will be around the fact the webcam is now in a slightly unsightly notch at the top of the screen, but despite the camera being Full HD, there’s no support for Face ID or the Centre Stage follow-me tech from the iPad.
There are HDMI and SD card ports, too, while the headphone jack stays. There’s a 6 speaker setup with Spatial Audio support. Up to 64GB of memory is also supported but a top specification will cost you dearly – it’s almost £6,000 at maximum specification although a significant £2,000 chunk of that is to get the top-spec 8GB SSD.
Apple says battery life can deliver up to 17 hours of battery life on the 14-inch and 21 hours on the 16-inch when watching video but don’t expect the M1 Max configurations to be able to deliver this.
You can can order the new 14 and 16-inch MacBook Pro models today, and they will be available beginning Tuesday 26 October.