Apple today announced the new MacBook Pro line with Touch Bar as well as some other new features they claim will set the new MacBook as the notebook to beat, they say;
It’s faster and more powerful than before, yet remarkably thinner and lighter. It has the brightest, most colorful Mac notebook display ever. And it introduces the Touch Bar — a Multi-Touch enabled strip of glass built into the keyboard for instant access to the tools you want, right when you want them. The new MacBook Pro is built on groundbreaking ideas. And it’s ready for yours.
The main new feature on the Apple MacBook Pro is the new Touch Bar which eliminates the function keys and replaces them with a touch strip that can both change depending on the app being used and also be customised by the user, depending on the app. Along with the extended force touch trackpad Apple aim to offer the user a new way of working with apps. It also doubles up as a Touch ID strip which can be used to unlock the Mac and to use Apple Pay.
Pricing And Spec
The new Apple MacBook Pro with Touch Bar comes in both 13" and 15" version with the 13" version starting at $1799 and the 15" starting at $2399. If you wish to keep conventional function keys then the new Mac Pro line up start at $1499.
These new MacBooks see the removal of standard USB, HDMI and Thunderbolt ports now replaced with 4 USB C style Thunderbolt 3 ports which Apple say;
Thunderbolt 3 combines ultra-high bandwidth with the ultra-versatility of the USB-C industry standard to create one revved-up universal port. It integrates data transfer, charging, and video output in a single connector, delivering up to 40 Gbps of throughput for twice the bandwidth of Thunderbolt 2. And both sizes of MacBook Pro are available with four ports, so you can do all that from either side. Existing devices are easily connected with a cable or adapter. And Thunderbolt 3 is reversible, so no matter how you plug in, it’s always right side up.
MacBook Pro or Not?
The million dollar question about the new MacBook Pro machines is will the professional community adopt them?
Is the new Touch Bar and larger touch pad going to revolutionise the workflow for those using Pro Tools and other creative applications. Furthermore are professionals happy to deal with the inconvenience of only having USB C style Thunderbolt connections, which arguably offer more power and flexibility but at the same time require adaptors or docks to interface with existing peripherals.
Of course there will be the usual suspects throwing rocks just because it has an Apple on it, but there will also be some with genuine concerns about workflow and connectivity. On the other hand there will be others already placing orders before we have finished writing this article, as they say one man's meat... will this be your new Pro Tools computer?
What about you, hit or miss?