Tech

What’s New in Apple’s MacBook Pro 14- and 16-Inch (2021) Models? 

By Novak Bozovic / October 19, 2021

Users who need more power from their MacBook Pros will be happy to hear that Apple has introduced two new models. Available in 14- and 16-inch display sizes, the new MacBook Pro 2021 models push every imaginable aspect of Apple's notebook lineup while also returning to their roots in many ways. 

In terms of what’s new in Apple’s MacBook Pro 14- and 16-inch models, you’ll find all-new M1 Pro and M1 Max chips, a mini-LED display featuring 120Hz ProMotion technology, an HDMI port and SDXC card reader, MagSafe 3, as well as a display notch housing a 1080p webcam. 

New M1 Chips, More RAM & More Storage!

Apple's M1 Pro and M1 Max Chips

Apple’s 2021 MacBook Pro models come with M1 Pro and M1 Max chips, depending on a chosen configuration. As rumored in the past, the company’s latest chips expand M1’s specs, delivering up to 70% faster CPU performance than the M1 chip. When it comes to GPU performance, the M1 Pro chip doubles that, while the M1 Max is four times faster than the M1 chip. 

However, Apple's latest chips bring more than incredibly fast speeds, highly expanded memory bandwidth, up to 10-core CPUs, and up to 32-core GPUs. They support up to 64GB of RAM as well as up to 8TB of storage. That was previously limited to 16GB of RAM and 2TB of storage (still available via last year's 13-inch MacBook Pro). 

Mini-LED 120Hz ProMotion Display

MacBook Pro 2021 Display and Notch Design

Apple’s ProMotion technology is now starting to appear in Macs as well, with both of the new MacBook Pro models featuring that technology. More precisely, the newly announced notebooks come with 14.2-inch and 16.2-inch mini-LED backlit displays, which Apple calls 'Liquid Retina XDR.' Both of them bring up to 1,000 nits of brightness and up to 1,600 nits of peak brightness (when watching HDR content, for example). 

Speaking of the new MacBook Pro displays, there’s another interesting change. Apple opted to minimize the new computers' bezels and insert a notch that houses a 1080p camera. As expected, macOS will follow that change, which means the notch will become part of your system’s top-placed menu bar. 

Greatly Improved I/O Connectivity

MacBook Pro 2021 Keyboard Layout

Following many years of complaints, Apple finally decided to bring back some much-needed ports to their latest MacBook Pros. Both of the newly announced models come with three Thunderbolt 4 ports, two of which are on the left side of the machine and one on the right. There's also a 3.5mm headphone jack, which supports high-impedance headphones. 

Let's not forget to mention that an HDMI port is included as well. As per Apple's specs for the new models, you'll get to use those ports with 2 external displays at up to 6K resolution with the M1 Pro chip and up to 4 external displays at up to 6K resolution with the M1 Max chip. 

We also need to mention that Apple’s TouchBar is no longer available. The newly introduced MacBook Pros come with a row of physical keys instead, and you’ll also find a dedicated Touch ID button. However, the TouchBar that we all knew (and some even loved using) is no longer available. 

Better (More Intelligent) Battery Life

MacBook Pro 2021 Model MagSafe Charging

The newly announced 16-inch MacBook Pro replaces Apple's Intel-powered 16-inch MacBook Pro. And with that said, know that the latest model brings up to 3 additional hours of Web browsing (14 hours in total), as well as to 10 extra hours of movie playback (21 hours in total). Those numbers are somewhat smaller on the 14-inch model (11 hours for Web browsing / 17 hours for video playback). 

Finally, know that the new MacBook Pros are already available for pre-order (starting at $1,999 / $2,499) and will begin shipping next week. 



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