MacBook Pro late 2016

The new MacBook Pro – still artists’ top choice?

As it is always the case with Apple product launches, there was a lot of buzz generated by yesterday’s launch of MacBook Pro laptops – especially since the Pro line had not been significantly changed in a few years.

Well, those who feared small incremental changes were proved wrong. Apple has taken some bold decisions and has introduced big advances in their Pro laptops. Now, whether all these changes will be welcomed by Applle fans is to be seen.

Although Tom and I are not users of Apple computers, we realize that MacBook Pros are very popular among filmmakers and other visual artists. Certainly, their popularity is based on very sound reasons (although we personally find more reasons to use Windows-based computers).

So, considering the strong popularity of MacBook Pros among Tom‘s followers, we wanted to ask you what you think of the newest iteration of this laptop?

Although there are some new things to be excited about, like the Touch Bar, the faster CPU and memory and the Thunderbolt 3 ports, there are also some surprising omissions.

The main “surprise” is the lack of an SD card slot. I am not really sure why Apple thinks this port unnecessary since SD cards are still the most popular recording media for cameras (other than smart phone cameras, of course). Since photographers and indie filmmaker are a big part of the user base of the MacBook Pros, the omission of this port is a puzzling decision. But maybe I am wrong. So, MacBook users, please let us know what you think of this.

The second questionable move is that the new MacBook Pro offers only one type of a port – the USB-C Gen 2 with Thunderbolt 3 (it includes four of these ports; there is not even a power port – the USB-C supplies power too).

I am of two minds on this move. I love the versatility of the USB-C Gen 2. However, right now there is a a shortage of peripheral devices that work with this port. So, although I love where the technology is going, I think these ports are impractical for people who use these laptops for work.

Yes, once Apple leads the way, other companies usaully follow. So, there is a good chance that the market of USB-C devices will grow. But, as it is usually the case, it is tough to be an early adopter for technology when you are using this technology for your livelihood.

For an interesting article about the struggles of finding a good USB-C port hub for the newest MacBook (this 12″ lightweight device comes only with one port – USB-C Gen 1), please see this article at The Verge.

To find out more details about yesterday’s launch, please check out this article at BH Photo Video. Their website has also started to take pre-orders for the new MacBook Pros, should you consider this laptop still visual artist’s top choice.

One clarification of the statements above: both the latest MacBook and the MacBook Pro laptops do include the audio jack (unlike iPhone 7).

Also, if the USB-C Gen 1 and 2 ports have you confused – I know they had me confused for a good while – then please refer to this short article or to this article that goes really deep into the subject.

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