This update in 2016 rather modest MacBook 12-inch is not consistent enough to make it the new benchmark laptop. The performance gains and autonomy are sufficient for this model to seduce beyond who prefer portability for productivity. Still, the MacBook now has serious competitors including HP Spectre, the Surface Pro 4 Microsoft and Galaxy TabPro S from Samsung.
With this release 2016, Apple fixes some of the MacBook defects 2015, but not all. Now the Core M processor offers closer to those machines equipped with Core i3 and Core i5 performance. In addition to these new Core m3 and m5, the new MacBook inherits an Intel graphics processor 515. The latter does not turn the MacBook machine for “Gamers” but it still improves video performance. Also note that the flash memory capacities have been enhanced.
The most notable difference from the 2015 model is the addition of a fourth color. Rose gold that is already on the iPhone and iPad.
Our test model was the version equipped with a Core M5 with 512 GB of storage SSD to 1799 euros. Apart from the color, the frame is identical to the MacBook 2015, with a weight of 920 grams and 13.1 mm thick.
By comparison, the spectrum of HP includes a screen 13-inch (Full HD 1920 x 1080 pixels) in a frame of 10.4 mm but exceeds kilogram. This model also offers the Core i5 and i7 which gives it a significant superiority in performance.
Here we have the Mac more end Apple has ever designed. A feat due in part to the keyboard and key system. These are very big but with a very short stroke. They emerge only the chassis and it takes time to adapt when you’re used to the depth of chicklet keys other MacBook or most current laptops. That said, we made it and had no trouble using the keyboard intensively.
The touchpad has the Force Touch technology that can distinguish pressure levels and allow calling different contextual functions or tasks
screen. small but very clean
the 12-inch Retina display 2304 x 1440 pixels which gives a resolution of 226 dots per inch in a 16:10 format which differs from the standard 16: 9 which is found on most other laptops and HDTVs. The surface is slightly shiny, but the screen offers wide viewing angles. It is very clear and bright. Despite the size of 12 inches and high resolution, icons, text and images are quite readable with similar displays of 1440 x 900 pixels, 1280 x 800 pixels 1152 x 720 pixels, 1024 x 640 pixels , a choice. The edge of the screen may well be fine, it does not compete with that of the excellent Dell XPS 13.
The audio performance is pretty average but sufficient for the streaming video on Netflix or YouTube. Although Apple has the Beats brand for quite some time, it is astonishing that Mac have still not entitled to a more sophisticated sound technology. Another defect inherited the MacBook 2015, the webcam. Its definition still tops out at 480p, giving in general a fairly bland image on FaceTime, Photo Booth or other such applications.
Always one port USB-C
is remembers the MacBook 2015 for the adoption of a single port to the new standard USB-C. A radical choice which, it was hoped, might be moderate on the issue in 2016 with the addition of at least a second port.
Las, the new MacBook rest on a single port USB-C, which is probably the most regrettable thing about this machine. A single connection for data, video and power is frankly not convenient. But we must admit that after using the 2015 model for many months, we realized that it was actually not that problematic. Autonomy was good enough that we did not have to worry about always having the charger with you. Furthermore, the use of storage services in the cloud has become so prevalent that it is really necessary to use a USB stick-type external storage device (provided you have good connections to Wi-Fi .)
If, however, you need a daily Ethernet connection, if you use USB keys regularly or want to connect a monitor: it will be more problematic. Of course, there are USB-C adapters for all needs, but they are not practical and often expensive. Apple offers a multiport adapter for connecting the MacBook to an HDMI display while connecting a standard USB device and a USB-charging cable C which costs 89 euros. If we personally came to the conclusion that we could survive with only one port, it is not necessarily the case for everyone.
The first generation of Core processors M promised thin portable, lightweight, powerful and durable. But it turned out that these chips, which are found in particular on the Yoga 3 Pro Lenovo, were not up to much in terms of performance and autonomy. All models equipped with Core M, the MacBook 2015 was the one who was doing the best, certainly the fact that Apple mastered both the hardware and software optimization to make the most of this new chip. Sometimes still he suffers as he slowdowns when too many windows or tabs were active. Good news, all systems equipped with the second generation of Core M (S Pro Galaxy Tab, HP Spectre x2) are significantly more efficient even though they are still down compared to Core i5. The MacBook 2016 is available with a Core m3 or m5. We tested the Core m5 version of
The score MacBook in 2016 with its new Core m5 with the performance test Geebench.
for comparison, the same test scores iMac 21.5 “2012 (top left), a 15″ MacBook Pro 2013 (top right), a MacBook Air 13 “late 2011 (bottom left) and the MacBook 2015 (bottom right):
After a few days of use, we can that this new processor is faster. He suffers less slowdowns mentioned above. the results of the test bench confirm this.
regarding autonomy, Apple announces another hour that a machine equipped with the first generation of Core M. During video playback tests of our American colleagues, MacBook held 10 hours and 33 minutes, which is half an hour more than the latest MacBook Pro 13-inch. From our side, the MacBook vintage 2016 6:30 held at our video loop test reading.
In use, the new MacBook (2016) is almost identical to the 2015 model so if you have a MacBook last year, there is no need to change it. For those who waited to see what the second generation of Core M give, gain performance and autonomy is enough to make this machine a laptop everyday, especially for travelers. However, the scrawny connectivity and feel on the keyboard could discourage some, especially those who use their laptop primarily sedentary way.