Review: Apple's 2019 13-inch MacBook Pro is an excellent, inexpensive workhorse

13

Comments

  • Reply 41 of 76
    pentaepentae Posts: 36member
    Honestly i'm going to defend Apple here for once - 128GB is small yes but in this day and age you don't need much drive space. Gone are the days of downloading all your MP3s and pirated movies to disc. You're streaming all that stuff now on spotify/itunes/netflix. Personal photos and videos should really be on iCloud.

    Apple want to get you into the ecosystem as cheaply as possible and then sell you on services, this is their goal.

    I'd rather they cheaped out on the SSD and let us upgrade it and diverted the costs towards premium quality materials, screen, and so on.

    Frankly I think the machine offers an amazing value and for someone who really needs more of a client side experience on their Macbook for browsing, word processing, listening to music and watching media. Anyone who needs more space than that will order more storage or plug in an external drive.

    The only thing wrong with the new Macbook designs are dropping USB-A. I think they were too ahead of the curve on that one. People will still be using USB-A for at least the next 5-10 years and I think it was a very arrogant move and carrying around a dongle is shit, theres no way to sugar coat it.
    edited July 2019
  • Reply 42 of 76
    JokingJJokingJ Posts: 3member
    Inexpensive is relative, but... This it ain't it.

    As nice and insular as Apple-land can be, the rest of the personal computing world deserves some consideration when talking about value, and Apple missed the mark big time here.

    Consider that for $1299 USD you can get a Razer Blade Stealth 13 with a 256gb SSD, 16gb RAM, 8th Gen quad-core i7, and with dedicated Nvidia MX150 (not to mention niceties like, you know, other ports or a reliable keyboard). That's a premium laptop from a reputable company that even has Applecare-esque service options available.

    Value doesn't exist in a vacuum, and it's exactly this sort of nonsense that's been pushing would-be "pros" in the Apple space to consider a switch. This underwhelming and over-priced base model isn't changing that, however comparatively "inexpensive" it may be.
    williamlondonirelandMplsPkestraldysamoriamuthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 43 of 76
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 11,421member

    ...non-upgradable = unappealing from this camp...
    I suspect (and have read educated guesses from writers here) that the vast majority of Apple laptop customers didn’t perform DIY upgrades. You’re confusing yourself as a DIY tinkerer with the mass market. 
    Quite the contrary.   These AI pages have been filled over recent years with reports of Mac users upgrading both memory and storage.   And, it certainly doesn't have to be done by a "tinkerer" -- I can pop a drive out of my Lenovo in literally seconds (remove ONE screw and pull out the tray) and upgrading memory isn't much harder.   But, if Apple or the user chooses, it could be like changing an iPhone battery -- not a user replaceable part, just take it to the Apple Store.

    I'm not buying the "nobody does it" argument.
     


    AI forum-goers are not representative of the much larger user base. You all are more tech savvy, and heavier users of gear than the vast majority of the market.

    It isn't nobody. But, for the last 15 years, it far and away hasn't been the majority.
    Yeh, ok, it's not the majority of users.
    The analogy might be the battery in the iPhone or Mac:   Many simply trade in or (often) scrap the thing and buy a new one rather than upgrade the battery.  Or, Apple could simply make the battery non-replaceable and make all users do that.

    The crazy thing is:
    1)  Apple does not intentionally put a too small battery into their phones or Macs.
    2)  The battery is a lot harder to replace than either memory or storage should be.

    If there were an advantage to the user of making both of these non-replaceable that would be different.   But so far, all I have seen are claims of better performance and reliability -- while both of those claims may be true, the benefit here is marginal at best.
  • Reply 44 of 76
    macplusplusmacplusplus Posts: 2,096member
    JokingJ said:
    Inexpensive is relative, but... This it ain't it.

    As nice and insular as Apple-land can be, the rest of the personal computing world deserves some consideration when talking about value, and Apple missed the mark big time here.

    Consider that for $1299 USD you can get a Razer Blade Stealth 13 with a 256gb SSD, 16gb RAM, 8th Gen quad-core i7, and with dedicated Nvidia MX150 (not to mention niceties like, you know, other ports or a reliable keyboard). That's a premium laptop from a reputable company that even has Applecare-esque service options available.

    Value doesn't exist in a vacuum, and it's exactly this sort of nonsense that's been pushing would-be "pros" in the Apple space to consider a switch. This underwhelming and over-priced base model isn't changing that, however comparatively "inexpensive" it may be.
    Do corporations buy that beast by ten thousands? Maybe they will, for their employees play the most demanding games easily on the corporate laptop. It has even AppleCare-esque service, when the motherboard burns during the gameplay they can make it replaced cheaply by a refurbished one, great for corporations !!!
    edited July 2019
  • Reply 45 of 76
    entropysentropys Posts: 3,458member
    JokingJ said:
    Inexpensive is relative, but... This it ain't it.

    As nice and insular as Apple-land can be, the rest of the personal computing world deserves some consideration when talking about value, and Apple missed the mark big time here.

    Consider that for $1299 USD you can get a Razer Blade Stealth 13 with a 256gb SSD, 16gb RAM, 8th Gen quad-core i7, and with dedicated Nvidia MX150 (not to mention niceties like, you know, other ports or a reliable keyboard). That's a premium laptop from a reputable company that even has Applecare-esque service options available.

    Value doesn't exist in a vacuum, and it's exactly this sort of nonsense that's been pushing would-be "pros" in the Apple space to consider a switch. This underwhelming and over-priced base model isn't changing that, however comparatively "inexpensive" it may be.
    Do corporations buy that beast by ten thousands? Maybe they will, for their employees play the most demanding games easily on the corporate laptop. It has even AppleCare-esque service, when the motherboard burns during the gameplay they can make it replaced cheaply by a refurbished one, great for corporations !!!
    Corporations buy HP And Dell laptops. The HP at least is comparable to this machine but both would have slower performing SSDs, RAM and SSD is upgradable. Usually the HP can act as a tablet and it will come with a pen. The SSD in say, an elite book would be 256 GB minimum, 8GB RAM and a comparable cpu, but has a lower res touchscreen. Price wise I would say comparable, maybe the MBP slightly cheaper!  The Mac would be faster too.
    Edit:
    Actually, the MBP is better value.
    In AUD, a 256GB MBP RRPs at $2299 including 10% GST. 
    At my work, the HP Is the elitebook 1030 G3 which is AUD$2530 inc GST on sale at the HP website.  It’s specs are:
    • Intel® Core™ i5-8250U Processor with Intel® UHD Graphics 620 (1.6 GHz base frequency, up to 3.4 GHz with Intel® Turbo Boost Technology, 6 MB cache, 4 cores)
    • Windows 10 Pro 64
    • 13.3" diagonal FHD IPS eDP BrightView WLED-backlit touch screen (1920 x 1080)
    • 8 GB LPDDR3-2133 SDRAM (onboard)
    • 256 GB PCIe® NVMe™ SSD

    The work Dell is comparable, similar specs to the HP but is an ugly black latitude 5300, is currently AUD$2148 inc GST on the dell website ($400 off on sale).

    I would get the faster MBP with a much brighter and better screen, and a superior, easy to use trackpad. Let’s face it, touch screens are as underused as the touchbar, people really only use them for scrolling.

    Edit2: the razor blade stealth above is currently on sale at Computer Alliance, for AUD$2499 ($300 off). It isn’t a work machine. The MBP upgraded to an i7 and 256gB SSD is $2799 but it won’t have the discrete GPU, although it’s battery will last much closer to that claimed by the Razer than the Razer actually will.
    edited July 2019 pscooter63
  • Reply 46 of 76
    macplusplusmacplusplus Posts: 2,096member
    entropys said:
    JokingJ said:
    Inexpensive is relative, but... This it ain't it.

    As nice and insular as Apple-land can be, the rest of the personal computing world deserves some consideration when talking about value, and Apple missed the mark big time here.

    Consider that for $1299 USD you can get a Razer Blade Stealth 13 with a 256gb SSD, 16gb RAM, 8th Gen quad-core i7, and with dedicated Nvidia MX150 (not to mention niceties like, you know, other ports or a reliable keyboard). That's a premium laptop from a reputable company that even has Applecare-esque service options available.

    Value doesn't exist in a vacuum, and it's exactly this sort of nonsense that's been pushing would-be "pros" in the Apple space to consider a switch. This underwhelming and over-priced base model isn't changing that, however comparatively "inexpensive" it may be.
    Do corporations buy that beast by ten thousands? Maybe they will, for their employees play the most demanding games easily on the corporate laptop. It has even AppleCare-esque service, when the motherboard burns during the gameplay they can make it replaced cheaply by a refurbished one, great for corporations !!!
    Corporations buy HP And Dell laptops. The HP at least is comparable to this machine but both would have slower performing SSDs, RAM and SSD is upgradable. Usually the HP can act as a tablet and it will come with a pen. The SSD in say, an elite book would be 256 GB minimum, 8GB RAM and a comparable cpu, but has a lower res touchscreen. Price wise I would say comparable, maybe the MBP slightly cheaper!  The Mac would be faster too.
    Edit:
    Actually, the MBP is better value.
    In AUD, a 256GB MBP RRPs at $2299 including 10% GST. 
    The HP elitebook x360 G5 is AUD$2905 on sale at the HP website with a $200 discount.  It’s specs are:
    • Intel® Core™ i5-8250U Processor with Intel® UHD Graphics 620 (1.6 GHz base frequency, up to 3.4 GHz with Intel® Turbo Boost Technology, 6 MB cache, 4 cores)
    • Windows 10 Home 64 – HP recommends Windows 10 Pro.
    • 13.3" diagonal FHD IPS eDP BrightView WLED-backlit touch screen (1920 x 1080)
    • 8 GB LPDDR3-2133 SDRAM (onboard)
    • 256 GB PCIe® NVMe™ SSD
    I would get the faster MBP with a much brighter and better screen, and a superior, easy to use trackpad. Let’s face it, touch screens are as underused as the touchbar, people really only use them for scrolling.
    They bought Macbooks by ten thousands since many years. If not, from now they will buy the only unhackable and the most secure laptop on the planet, or they will fall victim of cyber warfare to end with thousands of zombie laptops seized by botnets.

    Just a quick search:
    https://www.techrepublic.com/article/6-of-the-largest-enterprise-mac-deployments/

    Here are six of the largest publicly disclosed Mac enterprise deployments that have been confirmed by TechRepublic: 

    1. IBM 

    In just over a year, IBM passed its original goal of deploying 50,000 Macs, and is now at over 100,000 Macs and continuing to grow. 

    2. GE 

    GE announced in October that it would promote Macs as the desktop computer of choice for its global workforce of 330,000 employees. At this point, thousands of Macs have been deployed.

    3. Concentrix

    Business services company Concentrix has deployed more than 18,000 Macs to employees. 

    4. Oath

    Oath, the collection of media and technology brands owned by Verizon, has deployed more than 15,000 Macs. 

    5. SAP 

    Multinational enterprise software corporation SAP has deployed more than 14,000 Macs to employees. 

    6. Capital One 

    Banking company Capital One has deployed more than 12,000 Macs.”


    edited July 2019 GeorgeBMacpscooter63chia
  • Reply 47 of 76
    entropysentropys Posts: 3,458member
    that’s nice macplusplus. Most corporate IT departments are anti Mac. Always have been, always will. 
    Its stupid, but that is the way it is.

    my point  is this MBP is comparably priced to work laptops.
    edited July 2019
  • Reply 48 of 76
    danvmdanvm Posts: 1,251member
    entropys said:
    that’s nice macplusplus. Most corporate IT departments are anti Mac. Always have been, always will. 
    Its stupid, but that is the way it is.

    my point  is this MBP is comparably priced to work laptops.
    I wouldn't said IT departments are anti Mac.  Apple just don't have the ecosystem MS have in the enterprise.  Neither provide the tools to manage and deploy Macs and iOS devices in a large scale.  IT have to go thru Jamf and even MS tools to manage iOS devices.  Instead of blaming IT departments, you should point Apple for their poor business / enterprise ecosystem.  
    muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 49 of 76
    entropysentropys Posts: 3,458member
    danvm said:
    entropys said:
    that’s nice macplusplus. Most corporate IT departments are anti Mac. Always have been, always will. 
    Its stupid, but that is the way it is.

    my point  is this MBP is comparably priced to work laptops.
    I wouldn't said IT departments are anti Mac.  Apple just don't have the ecosystem MS have in the enterprise.  Neither provide the tools to manage and deploy Macs and iOS devices in a large scale.  IT have to go thru Jamf and even MS tools to manage iOS devices.  Instead of blaming IT departments, you should point Apple for their poor business / enterprise ecosystem.  
    I concede you are right there. 
    muthuk_vanalingam
  • Reply 50 of 76
    wood1208wood1208 Posts: 2,741member
    How much costs for adding one port on right side ? Have at-least 3 USB-C ports on Macbook Air or entry level Macbook Pro, please.
  • Reply 51 of 76
    macplusplusmacplusplus Posts: 2,096member
    danvm said:
    entropys said:
    that’s nice macplusplus. Most corporate IT departments are anti Mac. Always have been, always will. 
    Its stupid, but that is the way it is.

    my point  is this MBP is comparably priced to work laptops.
    I wouldn't said IT departments are anti Mac.  Apple just don't have the ecosystem MS have in the enterprise.  Neither provide the tools to manage and deploy Macs and iOS devices in a large scale.  IT have to go thru Jamf and even MS tools to manage iOS devices.  Instead of blaming IT departments, you should point Apple for their poor business / enterprise ecosystem.  
    You mean an “ecosystem” that fails every time a new botnet is released? The tools to manage and deploy PCs didn’t prevent the spread of botnets and didn’t reduce the number of zombie computers. Security is built from the ground-up, not a late night addition. I blame IT depts for millions of zombie computers they stupidly watched slipping from their hands to date.
    edited July 2019
  • Reply 52 of 76
    ivanhivanh Posts: 597member
    Inexpensive? With this spec? Com’on!

    dysamoria
  • Reply 53 of 76
    I just got one, and for my workflow, it destroys my old 2016 13". I write code that compiles for apknite's apps - what used to take over a minute is done in less than 20 seconds now. So for short bursts, this machine is a beast. I don't do video or photo editing, so I am overall thrilled with my purchase. If I needed sustained power, I would look at other Windows laptops or a desktop.
    It's a shame, though, that Apple does not provide a laptop that can flex its power for more than a short period.
    GeorgeBMacchiafastasleep
  • Reply 54 of 76
    nhtnht Posts: 4,522member
    JokingJ said:
    Inexpensive is relative, but... This it ain't it.

    As nice and insular as Apple-land can be, the rest of the personal computing world deserves some consideration when talking about value, and Apple missed the mark big time here.

    Consider that for $1299 USD you can get a Razer Blade Stealth 13 with a 256gb SSD, 16gb RAM, 8th Gen quad-core i7, and with dedicated Nvidia MX150 (not to mention niceties like, you know, other ports or a reliable keyboard). That's a premium laptop from a reputable company that even has Applecare-esque service options available.

    Value doesn't exist in a vacuum, and it's exactly this sort of nonsense that's been pushing would-be "pros" in the Apple space to consider a switch. This underwhelming and over-priced base model isn't changing that, however comparatively "inexpensive" it may be.
    The $1299 version has 8GB RAM (non upgradable), 1080p screen, m2 SATA drive and no MX150.  It only has 1 tb port and not 2 which isn’t nearly as nice if you want to use a egpu and a tb3 raid.

    Since the beginning there have been cheaper windows machines with better paper specs.  

    That’s not even true in this example. 
    macplusplusfastasleep
  • Reply 55 of 76
    ClarusClarus Posts: 41member
    All good points that you made.   But this is the first time I have heard anybody mention that: (in my words), the Touch Bar requires too much looking and thinking.   A keyboard or any other input device should just get out of the user's way.   Or maybe it would be better to say "become an extension of the user's body" such as you don't have to think about moving your finger -- it's just there and does what its supposed to do without looking at it or thinking about it.   The analogy might be a baseball mitt or bat -- they become extensions of the ball player rather than separate parts to be manipulated.

    In the early days of typewriters that was an important concept:   making the keyboard intuitive where the typist didn't have to spend even a quarter of a second thinking about where the key was and they conducted studies to streamline the whole thing and eliminate that 1/4 second --- because it turned out that it made a difference.
    I remembered another thing that bothers me about the Touch Bar. The applications that support the Touch Bar will display a row of icons in the Touch Bar. But a lot of times, I have no idea what they mean. They represent commands and options which, on the screen, are either labeled with text, or have a Tool Tip so if you hover the cursor over the item you will get a descriptive label. But as far as I know, there is no such contextual help for a Touch Bar item. Am I missing something?

    The problem is that if I don't know what an icon is, I sure don't want to tap it. What's going happen to the content in my document if I tap this mystery Touch Bar icon? Who is interested in playing this Data Integrity Roulette? I'm not, so I don't tap on buttons I don't recognize, and go back to good old menu commands, keyboard shortcuts, and icons I can hover over with the mouse to see a tool tip that can tell me what the heck it does.

    Back to the subject of the 13" MacBook Pro, the 2018 has been an pleasant quad core workhorse for me. A few weeks ago I had gotten done with about a month of intensive work projects, sometimes involving graphics and video editing. When I was finally able to catch a breath, I checked my MBP's uptime. It had been over a month since the last restart. I usually restart after 1 or 2 weeks (for no good reason), but forgot. It got through all that work without crashing or balking. It just powered through it all, day after day. People might complain, and the damn thing is too expensive, but at least it can take a month of me throwing everything at it that came my way.
    edited July 2019 dysamoriaGeorgeBMac
  • Reply 56 of 76
    dysamoriadysamoria Posts: 3,430member
    Clarus said:
    ...
    But there is another frustrating side to the Touch Bar.

    With function keys, if I press a key without looking thanks to muscle memory, it does what it is supposed to do. But since the Touch Bar constantly changes depending on the context, you cannot rely on muscle memory. You have to look at the Touch Bar to make sure that what you are about to hit is what you thought was going to be there, because it might be something else. Plus, you have to look carefully to hit the right button, because you can no longer orient by touch for the four-key groups of tactile function keys.

    .....

    I use a MacBook Pro but my favorite Mac keyboard right now is the one on the MacBook Air, which no other Mac has: You get a real tactile function key row plus Touch ID, which I find really useful.
    All good points that you made.   But this is the first time I have heard anybody mention that: (in my words), the Touch Bar requires too much looking and thinking.   A keyboard or any other input device should just get out of the user's way.   Or maybe it would be better to say "become an extension of the user's body" such as you don't have to think about moving your finger -- it's just there and does what its supposed to do without looking at it or thinking about it.  
    Many people have mentioned why the touchbar is a bad idea. Just like many people have mentioned all the other ways Apple have been falling down on the job they used to be famous for doing right (GUI, user interaction). It’s been a serious issue since iOS 7 in 2013. Same thing with the proliferation of bugs (it’s new, and worse than ever before with Apple products).

    These things just don’t get discussed much HERE (or on other Apple news pages), because this website is mostly pro-Apple editorializing, fandom, and average apologists. The Apple that earned the respect of designers for good human interfacing, intuitive & simplistic design is not the Apple we have today. That expertise was squandered and blown off in the pursuit of style and change for the sake of change. Maybe some day we will find out who was the real problem (my guess is Jony Ive, since he was put in charge of user interface design when it all started going wrong, but clearly Tim Cook also has no interest in the actual details of usability or the need to refine software before throwing a ton of arbitrary changes at it again just to sell the same products again and again to the same people), and maybe we won’t ever know (the apologists will always deny insider sources anyway). Either way, Apple need to relearn a LOT of what they’ve lately considered irrelevant and unimportant.
    GeorgeBMac
  • Reply 57 of 76
    sphericspheric Posts: 2,189member
    ...non-upgradable = unappealing from this camp...
    I suspect (and have read educated guesses from writers here) that the vast majority of Apple laptop customers didn’t perform DIY upgrades. You’re confusing yourself as a DIY tinkerer with the mass market. 
    Quite the contrary.   These AI pages have been filled over recent years with reports of Mac users upgrading both memory and storage.   And, it certainly doesn't have to be done by a "tinkerer" -- I can pop a drive out of my Lenovo in literally seconds (remove ONE screw and pull out the tray) and upgrading memory isn't much harder.   But, if Apple or the user chooses, it could be like changing an iPhone battery -- not a user replaceable part, just take it to the Apple Store.

    I'm not buying the "nobody does it" argument.
    I am. I was in Apple sales (reseller) for eight years and did support for a while longer. "People" don't upgrade. RAM was occasionally upgraded, but only ever once on any laptop. Often enough done by our service guys — mostly when the machine was purchased. Hard drives were usually only replaced when they broke or upgraded when the machine was purchased (or ordered BTO in the first place). 
    We had a service where we'd replace the optical drive with an SSD. Hardly ever done, but available.

    In mentioning that "these AI pages have been filled […] with reports of Mac users upgrading", you forget that "the vast majority" of Mac users never post on troubleshooting forums on the internet. Ever. 
    The people who are talking on here are by definition total dweebs, not "regular users". 
    There's what — probably a couple hundred semi-regular active users here, and probably about 50 to 100 or so accounts that do 90% of the posting. 

    There are two BILLION active iOS devices.
    There were 100 MILLION active Macs in use as of 2018. 
    The vast majority of Macs sold have been laptops, for at least a decade. 
    No Mac laptop has been upgradeable in any meaningful sense since 2016 (and even before then, the aftermarket SSDs were kind of spotty, unreasonably expensive, and certainly nothing ever approaching a mass market). 

    You do the math. 

    Nobody* does it. 



    *) obviously the proverbial, slightly hyperbolic, "nobody".
    macpluspluschiafastasleep
  • Reply 58 of 76
    GeorgeBMacGeorgeBMac Posts: 11,421member
    entropys said:
    that’s nice macplusplus. Most corporate IT departments are anti Mac. Always have been, always will. 
    Its stupid, but that is the way it is.

    my point  is this MBP is comparably priced to work laptops.
    Yeh, they want to be in control -- and with Macs that control is limited.
    Plus Macs are far more expensive than most business computers.  A Thinkpad T series is the ultimate business laptop and more than what most businesses are willing to go for -- but sells for under $750
  • Reply 59 of 76
    entropysentropys Posts: 3,458member
    I must be relatively fortunate to choose from elitebooks or latitudes then.  And all I want is a MBP.
  • Reply 60 of 76
    danvmdanvm Posts: 1,251member
    danvm said:
    entropys said:
    that’s nice macplusplus. Most corporate IT departments are anti Mac. Always have been, always will. 
    Its stupid, but that is the way it is.

    my point  is this MBP is comparably priced to work laptops.
    I wouldn't said IT departments are anti Mac.  Apple just don't have the ecosystem MS have in the enterprise.  Neither provide the tools to manage and deploy Macs and iOS devices in a large scale.  IT have to go thru Jamf and even MS tools to manage iOS devices.  Instead of blaming IT departments, you should point Apple for their poor business / enterprise ecosystem.  
    You mean an “ecosystem” that fails every time a new botnet is released? The tools to manage and deploy PCs didn’t prevent the spread of botnets and didn’t reduce the number of zombie computers. Security is built from the ground-up, not a late night addition. I blame IT depts for millions of zombie computers they stupidly watched slipping from their hands to date.
    From what I know, and in my own experience, MS enterprise ecosystem have been very secure, although not perfect.  I haven't something related to the MS Enterprise ecosystem and botnets.  Do you have a link, so I can read about it?
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