New 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pros Powered by M1 Pro and M1 Max Chips

Originally published at: New 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pros Powered by M1 Pro and M1 Max Chips - TidBITS

Apple has redesigned the MacBook Pro, with 14-inch and 16-inch models powered by new M1 Pro and M1 Max chips, along with impressive new screens, improved battery life, and a welcome return to the era of ports, MagSafe charging, and F-keys. The only downsides? Weight and a camera notch that cuts the menu bar in half.


I was watching this with a friend and they unveiled the M1 Pro. No surprise. The only question was the name. The lead was M1X and there was talk of M2. (I bet they came up with name M1 Pro yesterday just to throw everyone off).

My friend’s comment: The other computer companies are going need a package of clean underwear when they see this.

Then they introduced the M1 Max. I told my friend they’re going to need a three pack.

What gets me is everyone is talking about that stupid notch. People are claiming they won’t get the MacBook Pro because of the notch. It’s the lead article on the tech sites: Apple’s new MacBook Pro has a notch.

I have an iPhone with a notch, and I barely notice it. The worst thing I can say for the notch is that I can’t see the battery percentage because there’s not enough room on the status bar.


Looks like these new machines will be hard to beat by the competition for the time being. Intel CEO’s remarks about winning Apple back sound like science fiction.

I’m permanently joining the Salivation Army as I won’t be able to justify the purchase of machines like this. My maxed out M1 MBP provides everything I need for on the road and at home with a 34" LG monitor. But it’s good to see Apple catering for the creative pro community.


This is merely the second salvo. Wait for the 2022 M2, M2 Pro, M2 Max built on perhaps 3nm offering an automatic 30% energy savings from 5nm without any other optimization. Even higher memory bandwidth, more cores and more GPU.

This is not going to stop, Apple is going to be reloading and firing every year.

I was very disappointed as there was no mention of either the Mac Pro, iMac, MacBook, or MacBook Air. I’m guessing there will be another event for the Mac Pro and the iMac (maybe in November?) but why were the more reasonably priced MacBooks left out of the MacBook event?

I ordered the 14 inch M1 Pro model with 32 GB RAM and 2 TB SSD, without any CPU upgrades. I can finally bring in my Photos library from the external SSD and back it up with Time Machine and Carbon Copy Cloner!

This will be my first new Mac in 8 years so I’m looking forward to it! Delivery is expected in 8 to 10 business days.

I just wanted to mention, since you brought up extra weight, that it weighs the same as my late 2013 MBP retina 13 inch. So I was actually pleased when I checked the specs on that.

I might need some sort of adapter for my USB hub, but I think that’s about it.

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The MacBook Air, the 13” MacBook Pro, and the 24” iMacs are extremely powerful machines. I would say even most power users would be thrilled with their performance.

My wife has a minimally configured 24” M1 iMac I bought her the day after her old seven year old 21” iMac blew a power supply. It has a seven core M1 with only 8Gb of memory, and it runs circles around my MacBook Pro with 16Gb of memory, an i7 chip, and a Radon graphics card.

It is fast. It is powerful. And, it runs circles around most professional machines. There are three classes of people who wouldn’t be happy with a minimally configured iMac or a 13” M1 MacBook Pro:

  • People who spend all day rendering graphics. (They need one of these new systems)
  • People who are avid PC gamers (They’d want a gaming PC no matter how wickedly fast these machines are)
  • Developers who insist that you must have a minimum of three monitors (mainly to show those losers with just two monitors that they’re basic).

Maybe five years from now, when MacOS becomes even more complex and software does even more tasks, the M1 machines will feel a tad sluggish, but I am hard pressed to think of anyone who wouldn’t be thrilled with last year’s M1 machines.

The only thing that surprised me is that the 27” iMac wasn’t included with a M1 Pro chip. Truthfully, that iMac may just be obsolete. For the longest time, processors were divided into laptop class (efficient but not as powerful) and desktop (extremely powerful, but power hungry). The M1 breaks that divide. One chip rules them all.

The people who use to buy that 27” iMac/iMac Pro would be very happy with that 16” MacBook Pro, a second monitor, and desktop setup. Like those old dedicated car phones or iPods, desktop systems might be a thing of the past.

I’d be interested to see how a fully decked out MacPro compares against a fully decked out 16” MacBook Pro. We might see a Mx Mac Pro next year, or it might be that the Mac Pro is just obsolete.

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Finally. Sorry, had to say it. Wanted ports and real keyboard.

Ordered 16" M1 Pro with 1TB SSD. Replaces my 15" 2013 MBP at almost the same dimensions. Image editing and some web development. This should do fine.

And maybe $340 trade-in. Depends on their judgement of the condition. Screen a bit smudged or abraded (from the keyboard).


I see that Apple moved the announcement to Monday in order to make it into this week’s TidBITS. Smart.


As great as all the speed and power of these new machines are, Apple needs to address some issues people are having with the 1st gen of M1s. A friend’s M1 Mac mini kernel panics on a regular basis and my own M1 MacBook Air has experienced two hard freezes that even Force Quit will not get you out of, requiring a total forced restart (and fingers crossed that you haven’t either lost data or had what data/file structure on the hard drive get corrupted by the freeze). All system updates are up to date. These kinds of issues are not good omens for what is essentially a brand new system for Apple, after years of being on “other people’s” CPUs…

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Do you think the Thunderbolt Ethernet adapter I am using with my late 2013 MBP will work with the new M1 Pro MBP?

Just counting ports, it seems there is a total of one less on the new M1 Pro (three thunderbolt) than there are on my late 2013 MBP (two thunderbolt and two USB). Good I’m only using three of them now.

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The speed and screen sound great, but most else was rather unimpressive or disappointing to me. Sure, Mag-Safe and the other outlets are good, but it’s yet another charger that’s apparently incompatible with the 20 other ones that Apple has produced. Ouch!

Most shocking: the TouchBar is gone: it was a brilliant idea but sooo badly executed. App-specific F keys could be super useful if the TouchBar had ever had gotten some attention and customizability. Now back to the F keys that nobody remembers what they do in each of 30 different apps (ignoring the even more functions and icons the TouchBar could have gotten via Keyboard Maestro or BetterTouchTool).

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it’s a USB-c charger

… at 140W (my current USB-C one has 87W), but sure, it may still charge :slight_smile:

Older lower wattage charger will still work just fine either through USB-C or by attaching the USB-C-MagSafe3 cable. The worst that will happen is they’ll take longer to charge. Very few users that run this thing full tilt over prolonged periods of time will need the beefier charger to keep up, but people doing that kind of professional work, will easily have another $150 for extra chargers and MagSafe cables should that be necessary. The rest of us, we’ll be fine either way.

It might charge faster with a big fat charger, but what do I care when this thing gives me whole day battery life. It’ll charge over night. I’ll continue using my various ~60-W USB-C chargers.

I’ll use the new MagSafe charger perhaps as a travel accessory. At my desk at work I want to plug into my TB4 dock and have that power my MBP at the same time. Same deal at home with my simpler USB-C hub setup. I really like plugging in just one cable to be connected to all my peripherals and power.

I wonder what would happen if you inadvertently or on purpose connected one of these chargers to a phone. Would you blow it up, or would it charge super-fast?

I don’t understand how these new MBPs can incorporate an HDMI port and still be as thin as the last Intel-based MBPs. Or aren’t they, I only saw mentions of a small weight increase?

A Thunderbolt Ethernet adapter, which has a Thunderbolt 2 connector, will work with a newer Mac but requires a Thunderbolt 3-to-2 adapter to fit in the USB Type C port. It’s cheaper to get a USB-C adapter with Ethernet.

A colleague just mentioned being happy using the UtechSmart 6 In 1 USB C hub with their new 2020 MacBook Pro. It has Ethernet, HDMI, 3 USB Type A ports plus a Type C power pass-through (up to 100W) port and is only ~$30. It’s only USB 3.0 so it’s not great for higher-performing external storage (SSDs, disk arrays).

Any word on whether these new laptops will do clamshell mode? That’s been an issue with previous versions.