MacBook Pro 16 Finally Lives Up to Its Name

When you put the word “Pro” in your products, people expect them to have professional-level capabilities. For the longest time, this meant some spec bumps from the base models of devices. Whether that’s something that you’re okay with is a matter of discussion. But lately, technology has evolved in a way that had made spec bumps more like a blip in the radar. The gap between low-end and high-end processors, for example, have become slimmer and slimmer. MacBook Pros and MacBook Airs, for example, are not very different machines in terms of capabilities. Sure, you have the option for a graphics card with the Pro, but the fact of the matter here is that the integrated graphics processor that comes with the Air can do the same job… just for a little longer processing time though. Slapping the Pro in this case simply translates into a convenience in terms of the speed. Output-wise they’re the same.
To me, this sounds a bit like overselling. A real professional can do as much with a MacBook Air as he or she can with a MacBook Pro. If you put into account that the top-tier models of the last generation MacBook Pros had thermal throttling issues, then you've got a recipe for a useless pro moniker. What's the point of buying a MacBook Pro when it slows down while doing pro-level tasks?
This makes the 2019 release of the MacBook Pro, such an important one for Apple. Its improvements over the previous generation are squarely aimed at increasing professional productivity.

Minor Professional-Grade Spec Bumps

It’s not an upgrade if there’s no spec bump so Apple obliged on this aspect. Because it's the bigger version of the MacBook Pro it gets the 9th Generation Intel Core i7 which can further be configured to a Core i9 chip. This should be enough for the heaviest of photo and video editing tasks that professionals might get themselves confronted with.
The least expensive version that you can buy will have 1TB of PCIe SSD which can further be upgraded to 8TB if you’re willing to pay more than $2,799. For professionals who edit videos on the go, these amounts should suffice even if you’re using 4K HDR footage.
Multitasking should also be no problem for this workstation as it starts with 16GB of RAM. If that’s not enough for you, there’s are upgrade options that range from 32GB to 64GB.
Of course, these improvements don’t mean much if you’ve already got a hold on last year’s models. The 9th and 8th generation CPUs are so slight improvement-wise that it might not even be worth the bother to compare them. However, if you’re coming from a MacBook Pro from 2 generations ago, then the spec bumps might be compelling enough to make you upgrade.

Slightly Larger Screen and Chassis Makes a World of Difference

The heating issues were the downfall of the last generation MacBook Pros, especially for the top-of-the-line Core i9 version. It throttles the performance midway through a CPU intensive task. This effectively negates the spec superiority of the MacBook Pro from MacBook Air in terms of high-intensity CPU tasks such as video rendering.
The larger 16-inch screen is an industry-first. Apple had shrunk the bezels even further than they already have which translates into noticeably bigger screen real estate without adding too much bulk to the chassis.
To fit in the new 16-inch screen, Apple decided to make the new larger MacBook Pro a bit bigger. The change is small enough that it’s barely noticeable in the physical realm. It’s what Apple did with this extra real estate inside the device itself that makes a whole lot of sense. With it, they installed larger heatsinks which improved ventilation immensely. This improvement eliminated the throttling issues from last year.
For a workstation laptop, this small improvement makes a huge difference in terms of user experience. The bigger screen real estate means an easier time fitting all the tools you need on standby on your screen. It also helps you see more of your subject. And when you’re done editing, the larger heatsink helps keep rendering times low.

One Last Thing…

True to Steve Jobs’ spirit, the new MacBook Pro 16 also improved on a few fronts that even tech pundits failed to predict. In this new version, they’ve improved audio quality in both input and output side.
Upon initial testing, the speakers sound much like a built-in speaker from high-end TVs. This is a huge improvement because, for the longest time, we have accepted laptop speakers as the lesser audio delivery system. To achieve this, Apple again made use of the slightly larger chassis to install 3 speakers on each side of the laptop. This two of these speakers are woofers that dramatically improve the bass while minimizing vibrations. This enables the laptop to play deeper and richer bass without contributing to making the audio sound tinny. The result is astoundingly rich sounds with stereo separation. If you like watching movies on your laptop without headphones, this might just be the only acceptable way to do it.
Lastly, Apple also improved the microphone on this thing. Some reviewers even recorded full songs on them with surprisingly acceptable results. They now use a three-mic setup that mimics a studio-array which cancels out echoes and hiss that we normally find in other laptop mics.

The Whole Package

Apple’s approach with the MacBook Pro 16 is a wholistic one. It improved on everything it could including dropping some features from the previous model that didn’t work. They've rolled back their butterfly switches and completely took out the touch bar to name a few.
This new MacBook Pro 16 has become the full package laptop that fans have, for the longest time, been clamouring for.