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MacBook Professional 13-inch with Contact Bar (2019) – Full Overview and Benchmarks


Editor’s Word 7.19.21: Laptop computer Magazine would not usually advocate laptops two years or older. When you’re out there for a brand new MacBook, please try our opinions on the MacBook Professional 2020 (13-inch) and Apple MacBook Professional (13-inch, M1, 2020)

It is a stretch to name the 13-inch MacBook Professional with Contact Bar new for 2019. That is as a result of it is largely only a spec improve — with one essential exception. Now that includes quicker quad-core processors, the 13-inch MacBook Professional (beginning at $1,799, or $1,999 as examined) provides extra pace than final 12 months’s mannequin, together with the zippiest SSD you will get in a laptop computer. 

But it surely’s the keyboard that is getting probably the most consideration, as Apple quietly modified a cloth in its butterfly mechanism in order that it is much less vulnerable to issues. These updates assist the MacBook Professional retain its spot as among the finest 13-inch laptops you should buy. 

I have been utilizing the up to date 13-inch MacBook Professional for per week, and it stays among the finest performing laptops in its class. And whereas I did not encounter any issues with the keyboard, it’s going to take extra time to find out whether or not Apple’s design change shall be sufficient to handle the majority of complaints. The battery life and design each stay good, however they may very well be higher.

13-Inch MacBook Professional 2019 Worth and Configuration Choices

The 13-inch MacBook Professional with Contact Bar (launched in August 2019) continues to be one of the vital costly 13-inch laptops on the market. The MacBook Professional’s value begins at a steep $1,799 with an Eighth-Gen, 2.4-GHz Intel Core i5 processor, 8GB of RAM and 246GB of storage. We opted for 16GB of RAM (which I extremely advocate for many who maintain a number of apps and dozens of tabs open), which provides $200 to the worth.

Different upgrades embrace a Core i7 CPU ($300) and a number of other SSD choices. Upgrading to 512GB prices $200, whereas 1TB ($600) and 2TB ($1,200) price significantly extra.

Design

Cease me should you’ve seen and heard this earlier than. The 13-inch MacBook Professional with Contact Bar is a strong and chic piece of aluminum obtainable in Area Grey or Silver. However the look is getting stale at this level, because the bezels across the display screen look fairly thick in comparison with the likes of the Dell XPS 13 and different Home windows notebooks and 2-in-1 laptops.

This MacBook Professional is pretty transportable, at 3.02 kilos and 0.59 inches thick, however once more, different Home windows laptops are a lot sleeker. The XPS 13, for instance, weighs 2.7 kilos and is 0.3 to 0.5 inches thick. The HP Spectre x360 is a bit lighter (2.9 kilos) and slimmer (0.5 inches) than the MacBook Professional, too, regardless of packing a contact display screen.

Ports

One of many advantages of splurging for the Contact Bar mannequin of the 13-inch MacBook Professional is that you simply get 4 Thunderbolt 3 ports (two on the left and two on the suitable).

The non-Contact Bar MacBook Professional makes do with simply two Thunderbolt 3 ports, on the left facet. The headphone jack is on the suitable on this Contact Bar MacBook Professional.

What’s lacking is any kind of reminiscence card slot; the Dell XPS 13, HP Spectre x360 13-inch mannequin and Lenovo Yoga C930 all squeeze in a microSD card reader. Plus, the HP and Lenovo embrace a full-size USB 3.1 port.

Keyboard

The unhealthy information is that the newest model of Apple’s butterfly keyboard on the 13-inch MacBook Professional provides the identical shallow journey as earlier editions. It is simply 0.6mm, once we favor 1mm or above for ultraportable laptops and Ultrabooks. The excellent news is that I typed shortly and comfortably on this laptop computer, because the actuation drive of 60 grams offered sufficient suggestions that typing did not really feel mushy.

On the 10fastfingers.com typing check, I surpassed 77 phrases per minute with 95% accuracy. That is barely quicker than the 72 wpm I bought on the 2018 MacBook Professional, however I achieved even higher accuracy on that system, with 97.6%. On my on a regular basis 2016 MacBook Professional with out Contact Bar, I hit 75 wpm with 93.8% accuracy.

MORE: Apple’s Professional Show Stand Prices a Grand, And Even Mac Followers Are …

So, what about this new materials on the keyboard, and what is going to it do? Apple is not offering any particulars, apart from to say that the adjustments ought to stop points just like the double typing of letters or keys that fail to register. In accordance with iFixit, which carried out a tear down on the 15-inch MacBook Professional with the identical design change, the swap cowl now appears to be made from polyamide (aka, nylon) as a substitute of polyacetylene, however the profit to customers of that change just isn’t clear.

We plan on utilizing this MacBook Professional for a number of weeks to see how the improved butterfly keyboard holds up.

Touchpad, Contact Bar and Contact ID

At 5.3 x 3.2 inches, the trackpad on the 13-inch MacBook Professional is as huge as ever, and it is simply as responsive and correct. Scrolling on this laptop computer is silky easy, and it is a cinch to execute gestures like swiping up with three fingers for Mission Management or spreading three fingers to point out the desktop.

After debuting practically three years in the past, the Contact Bar on the MacBook Professional hasn’t turn into as helpful as I initially hoped — and I used to be a kind of individuals who mentioned it was not a gimmick. The Contact Bar can turn out to be useful while you’re utilizing some apps. For instance, in Photographs, this slender secondary show enables you to skim by way of images simply by sliding your finger. And in Safari, you may click on on one in all your favourite websites with out wanting on the predominant display screen.

However the utility of this sliver of actual property pales compared to what Asus is doing with its bigger ScreenPad and what you could possibly do with a full-touch-screen, 2-in-1 laptop computer. The upcoming macOS Catalina enables you to use an iPad as a secondary show with the Sidecar characteristic, however that is not the identical as having a touchscreen baked in.

The 13-inch MacBook Professional does have a built-in Contact ID button, which doubles as an influence button. This makes it simple to log in to your system with a easy press, although I might prefer to see Apple add Contact ID to MacBooks to make issues even quicker. Nonetheless, it is good that you should utilize Contact ID for Apple Pay and passwords on web sites.

Show

Though I might prefer to see Apple soar to 4K, it is exhausting to argue with the fantastic thing about this 13-inch MacBook Professional’s display screen. The 2560 x 1600-pixel Retina show is vivid, colourful and correct. Whereas watching the Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker trailer, I may make out each fold in Rey’s outfit and a number of other wisps of her hair off to the suitable facet. Her blue lightsaber beamed in opposition to the sandy backdrop as she flipped over an enemy ship rushing towards her.

The panel itself additionally beamed in our lab exams, because it registered a mean brightness of 408 nits. That soundly beats the HP Spectre x360 13-inch mannequin (287 nits) and the Lenovo Yoga C930 (273 nits), and the MacBook’s end result additionally outshines the XPS 13’s (375 nits).

MORE: Finest MacBook – A Information to Apple Laptops – Laptop computer Magazine

The MacBook Professional’s display screen is not probably the most colourful; it reproduced 118% of the sRGB coloration gamut in our exams, which is healthier than the Yoga C930’s end result (100%) however behind these from the XPS 13 (119%) and Spectre x360 (150%).

You will not discover a show with more-accurate hues, although. The 13-inch MacBook Professional’s panel turned in a Delta-E rating of 0.12. A rating of zero is ideal.

Audio and “Hey, Siri”

I might put the audio system on the 13-inch MacBook Professional up in opposition to these on any Home windows laptop computer, and Apple would in all probability win. Not solely is there a ton of energy right here — “Night time Working” from Cage the Elephant and Beck crammed a big convention room with sound at 50% quantity — however there’s additionally a powerful quantity of bass right here. I additionally appreciated the stereo separation on Twenty One Pilots’ “Chlorine.” The drum line was punchy however completely balanced with the slacker-melancholy vocals.

If you wish to converse to the MacBook Professional, you are able to do simply that with “Hey, Siri” help, which is enabled by the laptop computer’s T2 chip. I may ask Siri to point out me what my day appeared like, which allowed me to see my appointments at a look. Plus, I used the characteristic to open Photographs and present footage of simply my canines and open the browser to cnn.com. I additionally discovered it helpful to change to different apps with my voice, particularly once I had an excessive amount of open.

Efficiency

The 13-inch MacBook Professional with Contact Bar is definitely one of many quickest laptops ever of its measurement. Our configuration packs a quad-core Eighth-gen Intel Core i5 processor operating at 2.4-GHz, 16GB of RAM and a 256GB SSD. I did not see any lag whilst I jumped between 17 tabs in Chrome whereas additionally operating Skype, Slack and Pixelmator.

On Geekbench 4.1, which measures general efficiency, the 13-inch MacBook scored a really excessive 18,221, which wipes the ground with the Dell XPS 13’s mark of 14,936 (Core i7-8565U, 16GB of RAM) and the HP Spectre x360 13-inch mannequin’s rating of 14,935 (Core i7-8565U, 8GB of RAM).

In our video-editing check, by which we transcode a 4K video file to 1080p, the MacBook Professional was a full 5 minutes quicker than its closest competitor, the XPS 13, which wanted 19:20 to finish the identical duties. Each the HP Spectre x360 13 and Yoga C930 took over 20 minutes.

MORE: 9 Calls for for the MacBook Professional

The MacBook Professional’s SSD continues to be off-the-charts quick. On the BlackMagic Disk Velocity Take a look at, this technique turned in a write pace of two,573 MBps. The Dell XPS 13 hit simply 226.4 MBps on the identical check, whereas the HP Spectre x360 13 hit 616.3 MBps.

You should not anticipate the best graphics efficiency from this MacBook Professional, nevertheless. On low settings, it turned in a body price of 38 fps on the Dust 3 racing recreation, whereas the XPS 13 hit 88 fps and the Spectre x350 reached 56 fps. The Yoga C930 was similar to the MacBook Professional, at 37 fps.

Battery Life

Though Apple charges the 13-inch MacBook Professional for as much as 10 hours of internet browsing, we noticed much less endurance in our testing. Apple’s laptop computer lasted for 8 hours and 41 minutes on the Laptop computer Magazine battery check, which includes steady internet browsing over Wi-Fi at 150 nits of display screen brightness. That is about the identical runtime as final 12 months’s 13-inch MacBook Professional with Contact Bar and a Core i7 CPU (8:43).

This runtime beats the end result from the XPS 13 with a 4K show (7:50), however the HP Spectre x360 13-inch lasted an epic 12:07 and the Lenovo Yoga C930 (10:10) additionally outlasted the MacBook Professional considerably.

Warmth

Although it is one of many quickest 13-inch laptops ever, the MacBook Professional with Contact Bar stored its cool. After streaming video for quarter-hour, we measured temperatures of 84 levels Fahrenheit on the touchpad, 90.5 levels between the G and H keys, and 90.5 levels on the underside of the chassis. All of these temps fall under our consolation threshold.

macOS Catalina

Out of the field, the 2019 13-inch MacBook Professional with Contact Bar ran macOS Mojave, which incorporates welcome options like Darkish Mode (which makes content material simpler on the eyes) and desktop Stacks (for higher administration of all of your muddle).

Now you can improve to macOS Catalina totally free. That replace says goodbye to iTunes in favor of devoted Music, Podcast and TV apps. And Venture Catalyst brings extra iPadOS apps to the Mac App Retailer, together with high quality video games. One other huge spotlight is Sidecar, which permits iPad house owners to make use of the pill as a secondary show, full with help for Apple Pencil.

MacBook comparability

When you’re wanting to economize, the 13-inch MacBook Air ($1,199) is a strong alternative, because it delivers a number of the identical advantages because the 13-inch MacBook Professional, together with a Retina Show, Contact ID and superfast SSD storage. The Air additionally lasts practically an hour longer on a cost (9:32).

MORE: Apple Will Discontinue iPhone SE and iPhone X (Report)

Nonetheless, the MacBook Professional with Contact Bar sports activities a full-power U-series processor, whereas the Y-series chip on the MacBook Air is slower. You additionally get a brighter display screen on the MacBook Professional and extra Thunderbolt 3 ports (4 versus two), plus the improved keyboard. The Contact Bar might be good to have, however I do not see it as a deciding issue.

To determine which 13-inch MacBook is greatest for you, try our MacBook Professional vs Air (2019) face-off.

Backside Line

General, the 13-inch MacBook Professional is the Apple laptop computer I might purchase for myself, even with its $1,799 beginning value. It offers me all the facility I may need, a superb show, nice audio and an improved keyboard that ought to show extra dependable over time. I additionally proceed to understand such facilities as Contact ID button and “Hey, Siri”

When you favor Home windows, you may have loads of nice alternate options, resembling Dell’s XPS 13; it is lighter and thinner, with a greater keyboard and a extra aggressive value. Favor a 2-in-1? HP’s Spectre x360 13 boasts 3 hours extra battery life than the MacBook Professional. However neither of those techniques beats Apple on sheer efficiency.

I do want Apple would debut a sleeker design with slimmer bezels and that the corporate may squeeze extra battery life out of this platform. However general, the 13-inch MacBook Professional with Contact Bar is a blazing-fast laptop computer for energy customers on the go.

Credit score: Laptop computer Magazine



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