Apple’s 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina Display returns for 2015, this time with the power of the Force. The all new MacBook features the company’s innovative Force Touch touch-pad, which can perform a host of pressure-sensitive commands. It also packs an optional AMD Radeon R9 R9 M370X GPU, which Apple says can deliver up to 80 times the graphics performance as last year’s model. Here is our review for Apple’s MacBook 2015.
The design of MacBook Pro 2015 is exactly same as that of earlier MacBook variant. The laptop is packed with aluminum chassis and black-bordered display that have defined Apple’s highest-end notebook for years.
The MacBook Pro continues to be one of the most magnificent looking notebooks in its category, with two subtle stereo speakers flanking the laptop’s signature black chiclet keyboard. The MacBook’s underside features a set of barely noticeable vents on either side, with the iconic glowing Apple logo adorning the lid.
The MacBook Pro with Retina sports two USB 3.0 ports, an HDMI port, an SDXC card slot and two Thunderbolt 2 ports, the latter of which allow you to perform super-fast file transfers and connect to high-resolution external displays. Despite borrowing the 12-inch MacBook’s Force Touch pad, the new Pro lacks that model’s USB Type-C connection.
Measuring 14.13 * 9.73 * 0.71 inches and weighing 4.49 pounds, the MacBook Pro is pleasingly skinny and fairly easy to carry. Dell’s latest XPS 15 (14.6 * 10 * 0.7 inches, 4.6 pounds) is just a bit heavier and taller than the Pro, while workstations such as the MSI WS60 (15.4 * 10.5 * 0.78 inches, 4.36 pounds) and HP ZBook 15u (14.8 * 10 * 0.84 inches, 4.23 pounds) are slightly lighter but have bigger footprints than Apple’s notebook.
Keyboard and Force Touch Track-Pad
The newest MacBook Pro retains its predecessors’ satisfyingly snappy island keys that comes with a handy function row with keys for adjusting brightness and volume, toggling music playback and pulling up Mission Control to view all open apps. The actuation force required for typing is 56 grams.
The 2015 MacBook Pro comes with Retina’s biggest addition that is its Force Touch track-pad, which is also featured on both the new 12-inch MacBook and the latest 13-inch Retina Pro. This new 4 x 3-inch track-pad doesn’t actually physically click, instead using force sensors to simulate the sensation.
One of Force Touch’s main benefits is the ability to perform a Force click, which activates special functions when you press extra-hard on the pad. For example, Force clicking a link on a website lets you preview that page in a small window, while doing so on highlighted text will pop up a dictionary definition or Wikipedia entry.
The MacBook Pro 2015 features a beautiful 15.4-inch, 2880 * 1800 screen impresses the second you pop it open, with app icons and images that burst with color, and text that practically looks handwritten.
The MacBook Pro’s display secured a wonderful 303 nits on Laptop Mag’s brightness test, outshining the MSI WS60 (216 nits) and 254-nit mainstream notebook average. However, the XPS 15 and HP ZBook 15u were both brighter, at 320 and 307 nits, respectively, as was the 2014 MacBook Pro (317 nits).
The MacBook Pro is capable of rendering 86 percent of the sRGB color gamut, offering better color representation than the MSI (78.1) and the 83-percent mainstream average, but not as good as the XPS 15 (88 percent) or the ZBook 15u (103 percent).
Though, the Apple’s notebook exhibited strong color accuracy, with a Delta E score of 2.11 (closer to 0 is better). That’s far more accurate than the MSI (11.6) and XPS 15 (7.2) and better than the 2.84 average, though not quite as close to ideal as the ZBook’s 1.68.
Graphics and Audio
The MacBook Pro 2015 comes with an AMD Radeon R9 M370X GPU that helps the notebook to deliver 80 times the graphics performance as last year’s model. A lower-cost configuration with integrated Intel Iris Pro graphics is also available. Our AMD-powered unit certainly doesn’t disappoint; 3D titles rendered instantly in Final Cut Pro, allowing me to preview them as soon as I dropped them into a video.
The MacBook Pro with Retina is suitable for mainstream gaming, running World of Warcraft at 1920 x 1200 at a smooth 66 frames per second and a still-playable 37 fps with the graphics kicked to Ultra.
The MacBook’s speakers are crisp, clear and loud enough to fill a small meeting room.
The MacBook Pro 2015 is powered by 2.5 GHz 4th-generation Intel Core i7 processor that comes with 16 GB RAM, thus, consistently providing speedy performance. The notebook is capable of doing multitasks with an ease.
The MacBook Pro secured a whopping 14,423 on the Geekbench 3 performance test, surpassing 4th-gen Core i7-powered competitors such as the XPS 15 (11,816) and the WS60 (13,003), the 5th-gen Core i7 ZBook 15u (6,892), and our 9,455 mainstream notebook average.
As per the Laptop Mag, the MacBook Pro 2015’s 512 GB SSD transferred 4.97 GB of mixed media in a ridiculously quick 8 seconds, for a colossal transfer rate of 636 MB per second beating its predecessor performance with a big margin. The 2014’s MacBook Pro secured 282.7 Mbps. The MacBook Pro also topped the XPS 15’s 512 GB SSD (154.2 Mbps), the ZBook’s 256 GB SSD (175.5 Mbps) and even the WS60’s dual 128 GB SSDs, which finished the test at an impressive 365.2 Mbps.
You can count on the MacBook Pro to stay relatively cool while you work. As per the Laptop Mag‘s heat test, after streaming 15 minutes of HD video, the notebook’s touchpad reached 74 degrees Fahrenheit, while both the center of the keyboard and the notebook’s underside grew to 85 degrees. The MacBook’s monitor hinge was its hottest spot, at 88 degrees, which is safely below the 95-degree comfort threshold.
The new MacBook Pro is built to deliver 9 hours of battery life. According to the Laptop Mag‘s Battery Test, notebook endured 9 hours and 8 minutes of continuous Web surfing over Wi-Fi on our battery test, outclassing the XPS 15 (6:59), the ZBook15u (6:44) and the WS60 (3:05). It also beat out our 2014 MacBook Pro (8:29) by half an hour.
The price for MacBook Pro 2015 starts from $1599 (approx Rs 1,05,000) to $3000 (approx Rs 2,00,000).
The 2015 15-inch MacBook Pro with Retina Display maintains the gorgeous screen and slim design of its predecessors, while gaining some handy new upgrades. The notebook’s optional new AMD Radeon R9 M370X GPU and improved flash storage offer fantastic performance along with the Force Touch track-pad that allows for a host of useful new click functions. The extra half hour of battery life over last year’s model certainly doesn’t hurt, either.
If you’re long overdue for an upgrade or want to go Pro for the first time, Apple’s latest MacBook Pro 2015 is its best yet.